Tag: vampires

Halfway to the Grave by Jeaniene Frost Review

Halfway to the Grave (Night Huntress, #1)

Title: Halfway to the Grave

Series: Night Huntress #1

Author: Jeaniene Frost

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Synopsis:  

Flirting with the Grave…

Half-vampire Catherine Crawfield is going after the undead with a vengeance, hoping that one of these deadbeats is her father – the one responsible for ruining her mother’s life. Then she’s captured by Bones, a vampire bounty hunter, and is forced into an unholy partnership.

In exchange for finding her father, Cat agrees to train with the sexy night stalker until her battle reflexes are as sharp as his fangs. She’s amazed she doesn’t end up as his dinner – are there actually good vampires? Pretty soon Bones will have her convinced that being half-dead doesn’t have to be all bad. But before she can enjoy her newfound status as kick-ass demon hunter, Cat and Bones are pursued by a group of killers. Now Cat will have to choose a side . . . and Bones is turning out to be as tempting as any man with a heartbeat.

description

Format: Audiobook

Pages/Hours: 358 pages / 10.5 hours

Ownership: Own

My Rating: ★★★★☆

Tags: Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Ghouls

Themes: Buffy & Spike, Enemies to Lovers

Halyway to the Grave Night Huntress 1 by Jeaniene Frost Elaine Howlin Book Blog

Review: I have now read this book three times. First time I hated it. Second time I enjoyed it. Third time I loved it! I have no idea what’s going on with me and this book but I’m really happy I gave it another try.

During my first reading I couldn’t get past the fact that Bones was basically a copy of Spike but on my reread I could see him as his own character. It probably helped that I rewatched Buffy between my rereads which highlighted how different the characters actually are. Bones just dresses like Spike and has a similar accent and bone structure.

Overall this is a great book. It’s urban fantasy with a heavy romance plot but never suffers from lack of action and suspense.

Get the book: Amazon | Book Depository

Synopsis and book cover from Goodreads. Photos from my Instagram @elainehowlin_

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Sunglasses After Dark Review

Sunglasses After DarkTitle: Sunglasses After Dark
 
Author: Nancy A Collins
 
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Horror
 
Series: Sonja Blue #1
 
Goodreads Rating: 3.9/5
 
 
Synopsis: One spring night in London, heiress Denise Thorne disappears while partying at a nightclub, never to be seen again. That very same night, Sonja Blue, a tough-as-nails punk vampire/vampire-slayer, conceived in terror and blood, is borne from the city’s gutters. Saved by modern medicine before she could die, she is a living vampire who still possesses a soul and is determined to fight for what remains of her humanity. In the years since her bizarre resurrection, Sonja Blue travels the globe, hunting down and disposing of those creatures that prey on the innocent while searching for the vampire Noble who created her. But when she investigates a sleazy televangelist named Catherine Wheele, who is exploiting Denise Thorne’s parents, Sonja finds herself up against a powerful inhuman adversary. But as dangerous as Catherine Wheele proves to be, Sonja’s greatest foe remains the Other, the demonic personality with whom she is locked in a constant battle for control of their shared body. Can Sonja Blue overcome her inner demon in time to rescue an innocent man from Catherine Wheele’s unholy clutches?
 
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What I thought about the book: It was ok.
I wasn’t aware before reading that the author had edited newer versions of the book. It kind of ruined the flow of the story for me. I knew the book was published in the late eighties and then came across mention of a DVD player which confused me. So I looked up some reviews on Goodreads to find out what was going on. There was also a lot of typos as well. Sometimes whole sentences were repeated with minor changes in the second sentence.
***SPOILERS BELOW***
The beginning was very strong but it teetered out in the middle during the flashbacks. Although Sonja’s were very interesting the editing to bring the novel into modern day created a decades-long gap in time. It would make the mortals mentioned older than I think they were intended to be as well.
Catherine’s flashback sequence was frustrating to read after the childhood scene when she discoveries her abilities. I found it slowed the novel’s momentum quite a bit especially since it came so soon after Sonja’s flashback. At that point, we’re retracted from the main plot for a large portion of the book.
I liked the ending, though, it was suitably dark and dramatic.
 
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My Rating: 3 paws

Get the book on Book Depository. 

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My Super Late June Wrap Up

Better late than never right?….

Books Read

Shadowland (Cassandra Palmer, #4.2) Updating Pritkin (Cassandra Palmer, #5.5) The Force of Wind (Elemental Mysteries, #3) Milk and Honey Sputnik Sweetheart First Drop of Crimson (Night Huntress World, #1) Ride the Storm (Cassandra Palmer, #8) Lover Avenged (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #7) Feral Sins (The Phoenix Pack, #1) Faro's Daughter My Life as a White Trash Zombie (White Trash Zombie, #1)

Highlights

Ride the Storm

Ride the Storm by Karen Chance ★★★★★

The 8th book in Chance’s Cassie Palmer series sees several long running story lines come to a head (at last!). I had been waiting with bated breath for some of these and was not disappointed with the outcome.

The series follows Cassie Palmer, a clairvoyant time-traveling disaster magnet (love her!!), on her adventures ( or misadventures…) as the supernatural community’s new leading clairvoyant, The Pythia. Cassie isn’t your usual urban fantasy leading lady, she’s much more of an “every-woman” than a “warrior-woman” thrust into strenuous situations she isn’t prepared for. And, heck, we’ve all been there!! Cassie handles it all though and comes back swinging.

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Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur ★★★★☆

I gave this 4 stars but 3.5 would be more accurate. A lot of the poems really resonated with me but I disliked the formatting and it occasionally seemed more like whining from a young woman’s diary than observations on life.

A lot of poetry seems to be written in this format now, all lower case and just a few sentences… it doesn’t seem like poetry to me but who the heck am I to judge!

Some parts I loved some I found frustrating but I guess the point of poetry is to make you feel something which it certainly did.

The Force of Wind

The Force of the Wind by Elizabeth Hunter ★★★★★

The 3rd book in Hunter’s Elemental Mysteries series is a slow burner for the most part and then explodes into a rousing inferno. Three anticipated story lines come to a head with varying outcomes.

The Elemental Mysteries follows Giovanni Vecchio and Beatrice De Novo as they unravel the secrets behind Beatrice’s missing father, Giovanni’s long lost library, his iniquitous son and how these things may be connected.

Oh and Gio is a vampire with fire elemental abilities.

First Drop of Crimson

First Drop of Crimson by Jeaniene Frost ★★★★★

Now I know everyone seems to LOVE Cat and Bones from Frost’s Nighthuntress series but I gotta say I preferred this spin-off novel way more. I don’t know what it is about those two but I just don’t like them all that much… Cat and Bones are not the main characters in this book but I would recommend following the authors suggested reading order. There are some definite spoilers for Nighthuntress if you’re reading it.

This one follows two friends of Cat and Bones as they battle a shape-shifting demon. Much more paranormal romance focused than the other series as well. A very fun read, I gobbled it up.

Sputnik Sweetheart

Sputnik Sweetheart by Haruki Murakami ★★★★★

This one really surprised me. I had never read anything by Murakami and only listened to this because it was part of Scribd selects last month. I didn’t really know what to expect from the author or the story (I was flying totally blind) but it grabbed me and sucked me in like a whirlpool. The story follows a disquieting love triangle (not the annoying YA kind) between K, Sumire and Miu. The relationships the three characters have really highlight human emotion, the need for connection, friendship and desire.

Lover Avenged

Lover Avenged by J.R. Ward ★★★★★

Took me ages to get into this book and damn near got whiplash from all the POV’s. Freaking loved it in the end though. This is the 7th book in Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series. The romance plot for this one centres on Rehvenge but the book follows most of the main characters. The story is very exciting and the lessers are finally starting to look like a serious threat and interesting enemy.

Faro's Daughter

Faro’s Daughter by Georgette Heyer ★★★★★

Despite Heyer being considered the mother of Historical Romance by many, I had never heard of her. I had spotted the audio book on Scribd selects a few times but never gave it much of a glance until last month. I couldn’t sleep and this was free and short, I figured ‘what the hey?!’. I ended up loving the story. It reminded me a bit of Elizabeth Hoyt’s or Kresley Cole’s historical romances with a sassy strong willed heroine and a roguish hero engaging in an intriguing têteà-tête. 

My Life as a White Trash Zombie

My Life as a White Trash Zombie by Diana Rowland ★★★★★

First of all, how cool is that cover?! About as cool as this freaking book!! Such a fun story that may seem familiar if you’ve watched iZombie but only as far as both protagonists are blond females who happen to be zombies and work in the morgue. Another similarity is that the zombies seem to remain intelligent and fresh as long as they continue to eat brains. But White Trash Zombie was so much fun!! I listened to the audio book of this and the narrator was amazing, I highly recommend the audio.

The story follows Angel Crawford after she wakes up in the ER after an apparent overdose with no idea what’s going on, a new job and delivery of mystery milkshakes. Her “life” takes some mad turns and then a serial killer shows up to keep things interesting. Brilliant story, I ordered the next book before I even finished this one.


So that’s it for June. I didn’t read too much last month (I’ve already read more this month) but it was a good month. I really enjoyed almost all of the books I read.

Now I’m off to do dishes, make dinner and listen to my audiobook. Laters!

Ride the Storm – Karen Chance

Ride the StormTitle: Ride the Storm
 
Author: Karen Chance
 
Genre: Urban Fantasy
 
Series: Cassie Palmer #8
 
Goodreads Rating: 4.34/5
 
 
Synopsis: Ever since getting appointed the chief seer of the supernatural world, Cassie Palmer has been playing catch up. Catch up on the training she missed being raised by a psychotic vampire instead of at the pythian court. Catch up on the dangerous world of supernatural politics. Catch up on the powerful, and sometimes seductive, forces trying to mold her to their will. It’s been a trial by fire that has left her burned.

But now she realizes all that was just the warm up.

Ancient forces that once terrorized the world want to return, and Cassie is the only one who can stop them.

 
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What I thought about the book:
Wow!! I said finally so many times reading this book!!!
Amazing, it was everything I wanted and so much more and of course now I’m dying for the next one.

My only complaint is that the action scenes sometimes slow down the story and I ended up skimming them a bit after a while. Chance writes great action scenes but I’ve noticed with the last 2/3 books they’re getting more frequent and it kinda stalls the story. Cassie does often make important discoveries during them but there’s more than one way to do that.

***Some Spoilers Ahead***
Some great things about this book:
  • Cassie finally starts taking charge of situations
  • We get so many questions answered
  • Pritkin!!! So much amazing Pritkin stuff
  • We find out what Mircea is really about
  • A certain someone finally makes an appearance

There’s a lot of really interesting character development in this one, especially with Rosier and Roger. Fatherly love seems to be a bit of a theme here with three Dads influencing Cassie in major ways.

And Mircea! I always really liked Mircea (but loved Pritkin) but after this, I’m not sure how I feel. Especially after the last few sentences of the conclusion.

Book Depository Link

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My Rating:
 5 paws
Ride the Storm
I got this as an ARC from NetGalley.

Into the Darkness – K.F. Breene

19162511Title: Into the Darkness
 
Author: K.F. Breene
 
Genre: Paranormal
 
Series: Darkness #1
 
Goodreads Rating: 3.76/5
 
 
Synopsis: Sasha has grown up with one surety: she’s not normal.

She sees things in the darkness that no one else can see. Mysterious men cloaked in shadow, moving through the night. The problem is, pointing out invisible people is a fast track to a padded cell. Orphaned at age five, Sasha quickly learns an important survival tip: keep her mouth shut and stay out of the spotlight.

Until one night, everything changes. She and her boyfriend, Jared, find themselves stranded on the wrong side of town. Suddenly, the men she was convinced were hallucinations, are very real. And very dangerous.

As a new world opens up around her, she meets him. The Boss. An alpha leader who entrances her mind and tugs on her body. Primal and sexual, his people have a different set of rules. And they don’t always play nice.

As danger rises up around her, her differences may be the only thing that saves her life. She must embrace what she’s tried so hard to hide while resisting the person her body craves most. Sasha has finally found her shadow men, and they will change her life forever.

 
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What I thought about the book: I was scrolling through books on my kindle and opened this one by accident. I decided it was a sign from Seshat and read it. I read about 5/6 pages before I decided to check out the synopsis and then expected the book to be filled with sex but it surprised me. Ok, there was a lot of sexual situations but I really thought it was going to be worse (I’ve certainly read worse) and the story and characters were strong enough to make me want to keep reading. I like Breene’s take on vampires as well. They seem like a mix of traditional vamps and fae.
 
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My Rating: 
4 paws
Into the Darkness

Get the book on Book Depository