Friday, June 15, 2012

New series Recommendation

Inhale
Book #1

If you like whales...actually even if you don't especially like them, I would recommend this series. Okay, the first book in the series starts off more like a romance, with some animal storyline thrown in for good measure. An exciting ending and the promise for a continued/resolved romance subplot had me quickly signing up for book 2. That's when I knew this one was a keeper.
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After years of suffocating under her boss’s scrutiny, whale biologist Zoe Morgan finally lands a job as director of a tagging project in Hervey Bay, Australia. Success Down Under all but guarantees her the promotion of a lifetime, and Zoe won’t let anything—or anyone—stand in her way. Not the whale voices she suddenly hears in her head, not the ex who won’t take no for an answer, and especially not the gorgeous figment of her imagination who keeps saving her from the fiery hell of her dreams.

Gavin Cassidy hasn’t been called to help a human Wyldling in over a year, which is fine by him. Still blaming himself for the death of his partner, he keeps the guilt at bay by indulging in every excess his rock star persona affords. That is, until he’s summoned to protect Zoe from hungry Fyre Elementals and learns his new charge is the key to restoring order in the dying Dreaming. He never expects to fall for the feisty Dr. Morgan…nor does he realize he may have to sacrifice the woman he loves to save an entire country.

My thoughts after reading book #2, Exhale:
Holy shnikes, this one is a new favorite. The followup to Inhale, a recent discovery, was more than a little surprising. I have to say, this one definitely doesn't disappoint, and accomplishes in graduating from a promising series that has a good romance and some original animal storyline filler to full-on awesome intrigue and storytelling.

I'm at a loss for words at the moment, but suffice it to say, if you liked the first book, you will be blown away by this one. No saccharine cookie-cutter romance or predictability here. If you guess what ultimately happens, then you are definitely more observant and smarter than me. My only warning is that each book seems end with a semi-cliffhanger. If you hate those like I do, I would recommend holding off until the series ends.

This book starts right where the last book leaves off, with *redacted due to spoilers*. Yes this took an awful long time to happen, but these books aren't filled with unnecessary drivel like some other series (Shades *cough* of Grey *cough-cough*). There is an actual story, worthy of my full undivided attention. The whales take more of an active role in this book, taking on more anthropomorphic characteristics. It actually tugged on my heart strings quite a bit, and I'm not a whale lover by any means.  It's not that I don't like them, I just never really gave them much thought.

I can't describe too much more without giving the plot away, so I'll just say that this book is fast paced and well worth the read if you liked the first book. As in, yes that's my full on recommendation to try this series out.

-Life is too Short to Read a Bad Book-

Monday, June 4, 2012

Future Release PNR

Moonglow
Book #2

This one was really hard to judge objectively, since it followed Firelight, which I enjoyed immensely. I truly couldn't see this plot, about Ian the Alpha Were, being anywhere near as fresh or exciting as the first book. And although my eyes did start to gloss over when Were world-building hit full stride, I did ended-up surprisingly enjoying this book overall.

In Moonglow, we learn more about Ian, the exiled Alpha Were, and about the curvaceous widow-Daisy, who he instinctively protects from the crazed Were that starts to terrorize the city. I give the banter and romance between the two MCs about a B+. It just wasn't as hot as the first book's MCs, since there really wasn't all that much effort put into building the necessary conflict or sexual tension, prior to them resolving their differences.

The Were subplot ended up being rather decent, even though I think I've read enough Were stories for two lifetimes. Thankfully enough, the book didn't just revolve around Ian & Daisy's romance woes, but also on the rest of the sisters & their own interesting supernatural lives, with a deeper focus on Poppy and Winston towards the end, presumably for the upcoming book's setup.  We also get a few nudging hints of a history & possible story between Ian's valet, Jack Talent, and Mary Chase. The weakest part of the whole thing for me was the ending and resolution to Daisy's mortality. It just seemed strange & somewhat unresolved, and the book left a lot of unanswered questions about  a couple of other characters as well.

In summary, this book was better than I expected, yet I was oddly disappointed that it didn't leave me with the same amount of excitement and satisfaction as the first. Having said that, I have to say that this has got to be one of the better PNR series I've read. I look forward to reading about Poppy and Winston in the upcoming book, Winterblaze.

Warning: Violence & Sexual Content

                                 0-Ember
                                 1-Firelight
                                 2-Moonglow (July 31, 2012)  (Ian/Daisy)
                                 3-Winterblaze (Mar 2013) Poppy/Winston

-Life is too Short to Read a Bad Book-

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Top Reads

The Janus Affair
Book #2

Another delightful and cleaver read. The plot was both well thought-out and enjoyable. The editing was much better than the first, making no room for any odd or uncomfortable slow points. I read this one quicker than the last. As before, the 3rd person narration shifts between different POVs, but all scenes seemed to have had a purpose and point.

 I'm also happy to say there is definitely forward movement between our two leads, as they face their romantic pasts. And damn, just as a resolution starts to come to fruition for the two partners, it ends. I really could have used another chapter, or maybe another book to be completely satisfied on that front. No doubt, the wait will be long and tedious, but I'm sure it will be well worth it in the end.
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Evildoers beware! Retribution is at hand, thanks to Britain's best-kept secret agents!!

Certainly no strangers to peculiar occurrences, agents Wellington Books and Eliza Braun are nonetheless stunned to observe a fellow passenger aboard Britain's latest hypersteam train suddenly vanish in a dazzling bolt of lightning. They soon discover this is not the only such disappearance . . . with each case going inexplicably unexamined by the Crown.

The fate of England is once again in the hands of an ingenious archivist paired with a beautiful, fearless lady of adventure. And though their foe be fiendishly clever, so then is Mr. Books . . . and Miss Braun still has a number of useful and unusual devices hidden beneath her petticoats.

-Life is too Short to Read a Bad Book-