Early Review: Shades of Wicked by Jeaniene Frost

Shades of Wicked by Jeaniene Frost
Series: Night Rebel #1
Publication Date: October 30th 2018
Links: Ebook • Paperback • HardcoverAudible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

In this thrilling new Night Rebel series set in New York Times bestselling author Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress world, sexy and ruthless vampire Ian finally meets his match!

The Rule Breaker…

Master vampire Ian is unrepentant, shameless…and every shade of wicked. He’s made one too many enemies in his two centuries of existence, including Dagon, a demon who now lays claim to his soul. Ian’s only chance to escape Dagon is to join forces with a Law Guardian, but he’s never been able to abide by the rules for long.

The Law Maker…

Veritas’ normal role is police, judge, and jury to reprobates like Ian. But she has her own ax to grind with Dagon, so if she can use Ian as bait…well, all’s fair in law and war. As they scour supernatural hotspots to perfect their trap, Veritas soon realizes Ian’s carefully cultivated, devil-may-care roguish image hides something much more powerful. And Ian discovers Veritas has shocking secrets of her own. As they’re drawn to each other with a passion as intense as their peril, either love or justice will prevail. But each will have devastating consequences.

Shades of Wicked was one of my most anticipated reads of 2018. I love Jeaniene Frost and her Night World books (Vlad is mine, everyone), so when she announced that everyone’s favorite side character Ian would be getting his own story, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. I had no doubt I would enjoy it, but I didn’t realize I would love it THIS much. I honestly wasn’t sure how Jeaniene Frost was going to make the world’s greatest manwhore fall for one woman and one woman only, but she did it in such an impressive way. This isn’t an instalove story but rather a slow burn romance that was so worth the wait. But now I’m dying over the ending and need book two stat!

Ian is the epitome of everything a manwhore is: beyond sexual, shameless, dirty, and utterly wicked. This worked as a secondary, comic relief character in previous series, but now we get to see something deeper beyond that. Not to say that he changes an inch of his wild ways when he meets his match in Law Guardian Veritas, who is his opposite in every way. He is still his cocky self, but seeing him focus 100% of his sensuality on one woman is a heady thing.

Veritas is quickly becoming one of my favorite PNR heroines. We’ve seen glimpses of her in previous books, but now we get to know who she truly is, and she’s not the stuffy, law-abiding vampire everyone thinks she is. She makes a fantastic, strong, relatable heroine, and I’m so glad that she is the one to knock Ian off his feet (literally and figuratively).

I don’t want to talk too much about the plot, since it’s best to just experience it, but I do want to say that it’s a testament to Jeaniene Frost’s writing skill that it was so easy to dive back into this unique, fantastic paranormal world she created first in Halfway to the Grave. It felt like I never left the world, and we get plenty of cameos of old favorites, which was a plus. It’s not entirely necessary to read the Night Huntress and Night Prince series before starting Shades of Wicked, though I highly recommend it, not just because they are great series themselves. But whether you’re starting Shades of Wicked on its own or after reading 10+ Night World books, you absolutely won’t be disappointed with this sexy, action-filled paranormal romance.


lacey


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Release Day Review: Magic Triumphs by Ilona Andrews

Magic Triumphs by Ilona Andrews
Series: Kate Daniels #10 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: August 28th 2018
Links: Ebook • Hardcover • Audible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Mercenary Kate Daniels must risk all to protect everything she holds dear in this epic, can’t-miss entry in the thrilling #1 New York Times bestselling urban fantasy series.

Kate has come a long way from her origins as a loner taking care of paranormal problems in post-Shift Atlanta. She’s made friends and enemies. She’s found love and started a family with Curran Lennart, the former Beast Lord. But her magic is too strong for the power players of the world to let her be.

Kate and her father, Roland, currently have an uneasy truce, but when he starts testing her defenses again, she knows that sooner or later, a confrontation is inevitable. The Witch Oracle has begun seeing visions of blood, fire, and human bones. And when a mysterious box is delivered to Kate’s doorstep, a threat of war from the ancient enemy who nearly destroyed her family, she knows their time is up.

Kate Daniels sees no other choice but to combine forces with the unlikeliest of allies. She knows betrayal is inevitable. She knows she may not survive the coming battle. But she has to try.

For her child.

For Atlanta.

For the world.

It feels like the final Kate Daniels book has been a long time coming, but at the same time, I can’t believe it’s already here, and that Kate and Curran’s adventures are actually over. This series is without doubt my all-time favorite urban fantasy series ever, so it’s hard say goodbye to characters that have been in my life for over half a decade. I’ll try to keep the spoilers for the rest of the series to a minimum (though the blurb does give you a good enough hint of what’s to come), but just know that this epic finale was everything I ever wanted in the last Kate Daniels book!

The series and all of Kate’s battles, both internal and external, have all led to this final round with her father Roland. With the help of her husband, the former Beast Lord, her friends, the Pack’s shifters, and the People’s vampires, Kate must protect Atlanta and her son from Roland and a mysterious, ancient foe who is hell-bent on ruling the world.

I loved Magic Triumphs. It is jam-packed with action and humor, everything I love in a KD book. There’s no better series that can combine witty banter and epic fight scenes as well as this series. Kate is a hilarious heroine, sarcastic and self-deprecating. She’s also epic and badass, willing to give her all to protect her family. I loved seeing her and Curran in a new perspective as parents with baby Conlan. As much as I hate to say goodbye to Kate and Curran, they have been through hell and back, and this conclusion is a very well-deserved ending for them.

Every book in this series has blown my mind, and I’m just amazed at how everything comes together in this finale. Ilona Andrews has written one of the most incredible urban fantasy worlds with the KD series, and I can only hope that there are more stories to tell. For now, I’m happy that they did justice with Kate and Curran, who will forever be two of my favorite characters in the book world!


lacey


Reading Order: Kate Daniels series

 
   
   

#1 ~ Magic Bites: Ebook • PaperbackSpecial EditionAudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ Magic Burns: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#3 ~ Magic Strikes: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#4 ~ Magic Bleeds: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#5 ~ Magic Slays: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#6 ~ Magic Rises: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#7 ~ Magic Breaks: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#8 ~ Magic Shifts: EbookHardcoverPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#9 ~ Magic Binds: EbookHardcoverAudible • Goodreads
#10 ~ Magic Triumphs: EbookHardcoverAudibleGoodreads


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Early Review: Wild Hunger by Chloe Neill

Wild Hunger by Chloe Neill
Series: Heirs of Chicagoland #1 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: August 14th 2018
Links: Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

In the first thrilling installment of Chloe Neill’s spinoff to the New York Times bestselling Chicagoland Vampires series, a new vampire will find out just how deep blood ties run.

As the only vampire child ever born, some believed Elisa Sullivan had all the luck. But the magic that helped bring her into the world left her with a dark secret. Shifter Connor Keene, the only son of North American Central Pack Apex Gabriel Keene, is the only one she trusts with it. But she’s a vampire and the daughter of a Master and a Sentinel, and he’s prince of the Pack and its future king.

When the assassination of a diplomat brings old feuds to the fore again, Elisa and Connor must choose between love and family, between honor and obligation, before Chicago disappears forever.

I have been a big fan of Chloe Neill’s since I discovered her Chicagoland Vampires series years ago. The first few books are still some of my favorite paranormal/urban fantasy reads. I did however put the series on hold around book 10, but when I heard the author would be releasing a new spinoff series, I knew I had to catch up on the CV series. Fast forward to me racing through the last few books and figuring out just how Merit and Ethan ended up with a baby, and I finally get to Wild Hunger. I honestly wasn’t sure how this spinoff series about their child would turn out, but I have to say that I was not disappointed! I had so much fun returning to the world Chloe Neill created and fell in love with Elisa Sullivan.

Elisa is the only known born vampire to exist. Born to the powerhouse vampire couple of Chicago, she is the princess of Cadogan House, though that doesn’t mean she’s spoiled. She’s smart, headstrong, and responsible – she wants to be treated like any other vampire and goes training in Paris to get that equal treatment. But when she returns home to Chicago for peace treaty talks, tension is brewing between the vampires, werewolves, and fae. All hell breaks loose when one of her friends is framed for murder, with Elisa caught right in the middle.

I loved this exciting, new, fresh take on the vampire world Chloe Neill created. Elisa makes a fantastic heroine and investigator, a role previously held by her mother. I am so happy with her love interest as well: Connor Keene, the future king of the shifter Pack. They’ve known each other their whole lives, most of which they spent annoying each other, but Elisa’s years away from Chicago makes them see each other in a new light. I see so much potential for the two of them and they are definitely what I’m most excited about for the rest of the series! I loved seeing old faces, but Chloe Neill writes them in a way that doesn’t overshadow this new generation. Wild Hunger is a great start to this spinoff series, with plenty of action, political intrigue, chemistry between the main characters, and I already can’t wait for more.


lacey


Wild Hunger is the first book in the spinoff series of the Chicagoland Vampires series. Though it can be read as a standalone, I highly recommend reading the CV series as well.

Reading Order: Chicagoland Vampires series

   
 
   
   

#1 ~ Some Girls Bite: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Friday Night Bites: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Twice Bitten: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Hard Bitten: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#5 ~ Drink Deep: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#6 ~ Biting Cold: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#7 ~ House Rules: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#8 ~ Biting Bad: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#8.5 ~ Howling for You: Ebook • Goodreads
#9 ~ Wild Things: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#10 ~ Blood Games: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#10.5 ~ Lucky Break: EbookGoodreads
#11 ~ Dark Debt: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#12 ~ Midnight Marked: EbookPaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#12.5 ~ Phantom Kiss: Ebook • AudibleGoodreads
#13 ~ Blade Bound: EbookPaperbackAudibleGoodreads
#13.5 ~ Slaying It: EbookGoodreads


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Release Day Review: Burn Bright by Patricia Briggs

Burn Bright by Patricia Briggs
Series: Alpha & Omega #5 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: March 6th 2018
Links: Ebook • Hardcover • Audible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

In her bestselling Alpha and Omega series, Patricia Briggs “spins tales of werewolves, coyote shifters, and magic and, my, does she do it well” (USATODAY.com). Now mated werewolves Charles Cornick and Anna Latham face a threat like no other–one that lurks too close to home…

They are the wild and the broken. The werewolves too damaged to live safely among their own kind. For their own good, they have been exiled to the outskirts of Aspen Creek, Montana. Close enough to the Marrok’s pack to have its support; far enough away to not cause any harm.

With their Alpha out of the country, Charles and Anna are on call when an SOS comes in from the fae mate of one such wildling. Heading into the mountainous wilderness, they interrupt the abduction of the wolf–but can’t stop blood from being shed. Now Charles and Anna must use their skills–his as enforcer, hers as peacemaker–to track down the attackers, reopening a painful chapter in the past that springs from the darkest magic of the witchborn…

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Patricia Briggs is one of the best urban fantasy authors I’ve ever read. I adore her Mercy Thompson series, but the Alpha & Omega series is what I LIVE for. Charles and Anna are two of my all-time favorite beloved characters – the beginning of their romance was slow and sweet, but with each book, they prove just how much they are meant to be mates. I honestly could read about them forever, so to say I was excited about Burn Bright would be an understatement. If you’ve been a fan of the series, you’ll definitely want to pick up Burn Bright.

Ours, said Brother Wolf. She is perfect, our soul mate, our anchor, the reason we were created. So that we could be hers.

I don’t want to go much into detail about the plot because the blurb explains it perfectly. I do want to say that this book shouldn’t be read as a standalone – this is a complex, fascinating paranormal world that Patricia Briggs has created, and it’ll be easier to understand if you start from the beginning. Plus, more Anna and Charles 😉

Anna slipped her hand under Charles’ tee, just at the small of his back, and let her fingers rest against the skin there. Brother Wolf relaxed. Anna made Brother Wolf happier than killing their enemies would have.

The author’s writing always amazes me every time I open one of her books. It reads simply but beautifully, every word holding significance. I love the way she writes all the little details, especially about Anna and Charles, because it makes me more immersed in their world and in love with the characters. It’s usually hard for me to dive back into a series after a year or two wait, but Patricia Briggs is so skilled in bringing me back into the series as if no time has passed. It almost has me not minding the wait… almost.

Anna started to agree but then stopped and shook her head. “No. Then I wouldn’t have Charles. He’s worth all the rest.”
“Charlie?” said Sage. She started to say something else, but she shook her head and gave Anna a rueful smile. “Charlie sure thinks the sun rises and sets on you, that’s for sure.”

Each book in the A&O series is suspenseful and action-packed, and Burn Bright is no different. I loved reading about Charles and Anna again, and already want more of them. This book is a fantastic addition to an incredible series and I can’t wait to see where Patricia Briggs will take us next!


lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.


Series Order: Alpha & Omega series

Cry Wolf by Patricia Briggs Hunting Ground by Patricia Briggs
Fair Game by Patricia Briggs Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs 

#1 ~ Cry Wolf: Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Hunting Ground: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Fair Game: Ebook • Hardcover • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Dead Heat: My Review • Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#5 ~ Burn Bright: Ebook • Hardcover • Audible • Goodreads

The Alpha & Omega series is a spinoff of the Mercy Thompson series!

Reading Order: Mercy Thompson series

Moon Called by Patricia Briggs Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs
 Silver Borne by Patricia Briggs River Marked by Patricia Briggs
Frost Burned by Patricia Briggs   

#1 ~ Moon Called: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ Blood Bound: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#3 ~ Iron Kissed: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#4 ~ Bone Crossed: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#5 ~ Silver Borne: EbookHardcoverPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#6 ~ River Marked: EbookHardcoverPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#7 ~ Frost Burned: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#8 ~ Night Broken: EbookHardcover • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#9 ~ Fire Touched: My Review • EbookHardcover • Audible • Goodreads
#10 ~ Silence Fallen: My Review • EbookHardcover • Audible • Goodreads
#11 ~ Storm Cursed: Goodreads (March 2019)


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Review: Blood Fury by J.R. Ward

Blood Fury by J.R. Ward
Series: Black Dagger Legacy #3 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: January 9th 2018
Links: Ebook • HardcoverAudibleGoodreads
Source: I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

In this sexy paranormal romance novel set in the world of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, #1 New York Times bestselling author J. R. Ward tells the story of two couples—both fighting to find love in the midst of the war with the Lessening Society.

A vampire aristocrat, Peyton is well aware of his duty to his bloodline: mate with an appropriate female of his class and carry on his family’s traditions. And he thought he’d found his perfect match—until she fell in love with someone else. Yet when his split-second decision in a battle with the enemy endangers the life of another trainee, Peyton has to face the idea that his future, and his heart, actually lie with another.

Novo, as a female in the Black Dagger Brotherhood’s training program, feels like she has to prove herself to everybody—and she has no interest in being distracted by falling in love. But when Peyton proves to be so much more than a rich playboy, she is forced to confront the tragedy that has broken her soul and closed her off from love.

As the two grapple with Novo’s past and Peyton’s present, another couple must contend with a connection that is unparalleled—and potentially scandalous. Saxton, who has had his heart broken, discovers in himself a deep-seated attraction to Ruhn, a new member of the household. But will the other male explore the connection? Or will he close his mind and his heart to what could be true love . . . and cost Saxton everything?

The Black Dagger Brotherhood world is one of my favorite PNR worlds out there. If J.R. Ward writes anything even remotely related to the BDB, I will read it. This Black Dagger Legacy is a spinoff of the original series, but it’s got all the goodness from the original (meaning all the OG BDB boys still play a part!), plus a little extra. These books are funny, kickass, sexy, and it’s got its own brand of uniqueness that makes it completely different from any other vampire romance series. I highly recommend you read the BDB and BDL series if you love anything PNR!

I’ve been waiting for the story in Blood Fury ever since I read Lover at Last – because SAXTON! The poor guy got the short end of the stick in LaL, but we finally get his story and HEA in Blood Fury. Alongside his romance, we get the trainees Peyton and Novo’s, which we all saw coming from a mile away, right? I do love the fact that we get a bit of s 2-in-1 in this spinoff series in terms of storylines and romances, because I can never get enough of these vampires!

Peyton is part of an aristocratic bloodline, and he is everything that Novo despises – rich, arrogant, beautiful, and did I mention aristocratic? But despite him being her total opposite, she can’t help but want him. Too bad he’s in love with another trainee in their group… or is he?

Now that Paradise has found her mate, Peyton has lost his best friend and confidante and is in limbo. The only thing that makes sense in his life anymore is his desire for Novo. To say the two of them clash would be an understatement. The chemistry between Novo and Peyton is on fire – they are constantly going head to head with each other, and their lust builds with every fight and banter.

I loved Novo and Peyton together. They were the perfect case of opposites-attract – she is the tough, badass mofo in leathers, while Peyton is always slick in his suits outside of training. But the two of them worked together perfectly. They each had their own individual personal problems to overcome, and when they finally learned to lean on each other, it was magic.

Staring at her in his arms, he knew that he would lay his life down for hers without regret. He would slay dragons and move mountains for her. He would conquer whole worlds at her command and starve to skin and bones just to ensure she had food. She was not his sun or moon, but his galaxy.
“I love you, too,” he said by her ear. “Forever and always.”

And of course, the second romance that parallels Novo and Peyton’s is Saxton and Ruhn’s. I freaking ADORED these two men. They make the sweetest, loveliest couple – there’s a special kind of tenderness with Saxton guiding Ruhn to explore his newfound sexuality. It’s a slow, innocent, and heart-warming kind of M/M romance that I couldn’t be happier about!

Blood Fury is another excellent addition to the BDB world. You don’t need to read the BDB series in order to read the BDL books, though I’d still highly recommend you do. Many of the original cast still play a part in the spinoff series, and there are so many characters you might get a little lost if you’re not familiar with them. If you have read BDB but haven’t gotten to experience the spinoff series yet, you really should, because I can guarantee that your favorite Brother will be in the books! And iff you’re a fan of PNR but haven’t read J.R. Ward yet… what are you waiting for!?


lacey


Reading Order: Black Dagger Legacy series

  

#1 ~ Blood Kiss: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ Blood Vow: Ebook • HardcoverPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#3 ~ Blood Fury: Ebook • HardcoverAudibleGoodreads


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