Friday Book Club #10

Friday, August 4, 2017

A blog series in the double digits! Woohoo!

I know things have been a little quiet in the book realm lately, but that doesn't mean I haven't been reading - it's really more an expression of how stressed out I was that new books just didn't appeal to me. Luckily a few of them managed to sneak in there and give me a bit of my book mojo back, so here's the highlight real of my bookshelf over the past few months:

Read & Loved:

Guild Hunter Series by Nalini Singh

Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux knows she’s the best—but she doesn’t know if she’s good enough for this job. Hired by the dangerously beautiful Archangel Raphael, a being so lethal that no mortal wants his attention, only one thing is clear—failure is not an option…even if the task is impossible.

Because this time, it’s not a wayward vamp she has to track. It’s an archangel gone bad.

The job will put Elena in the midst of a killing spree like no other…and pull her to the razor’s edge of passion. Even if the hunt doesn’t destroy her, succumbing to Raphael’s seductive touch just may. For when archangels play, mortals break…

My Thoughts: After waiting a ridiculous number of years to actually pick up this series, the DC Public Library is helping me zoom through them all before the next book. While they're not always as comforting as the Psy-Changeling series (some bad sh*t happens in a lot of these books), the core romance of Elena and Raphael is incredible, and the supporting characters interesting enough to deserve all of the individual books they've been getting.

The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

Fate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you're only seventeen?

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of Death and Destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father's kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran's queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar's wife, she finds something else entirely:

Compassion. Protection. Desire...

But Akaran has its own secrets -- thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most. . .including herself.

A lush and vivid story that is steeped in Indian folklore and mythology. The Star-touched Queen is a novel that no reader will soon forget.

My Thoughts: This one was kind of unexpectedly wonderful! I picked it up because I'm a sucker and Dear Author always lets you know when there's a good Kindle deal (and good reviews). I probably haven't read a new-to-me YA author in years, but this is an immediately engrossing tail of a young woman dealing with truly incredible circumstances, steeped in the history and culture of another country. Very recommended, as at its heart it's a tale of understanding and forgiveness, and the ability to meet those who've wronged you with an open heart. Also, there's just enough romance to tug at my little HEA obsessed heart.

White Hot & Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Nevada Baylor has a unique and secret skill—she knows when people are lying—and she's used that magic (along with plain, hard work) to keep her colorful and close-knit family's detective agency afloat. But her new case pits her against the shadowy forces that almost destroyed the city of Houston once before, bringing Nevada back into contact with Connor "Mad" Rogan.

Rogan is a billionaire Prime—the highest rank of magic user—and as unreadable as ever, despite Nevada’s “talent.” But there’s no hiding the sparks between them. Now that the stakes are even higher, both professionally and personally, and their foes are unimaginably powerful, Rogan and Nevada will find that nothing burns like ice …

My Thoughts: SO GOOD. MORE BOOKS PLEASE. Avon, where is their book deal? Why do you taunt us with a potential future where we don't get to keeping reading about House Baylor and House Rogan?! And if you haven't bought these books yet now is the perfect time, because instead of waiting 2 years for book two and months for book three, the full "trilogy" is finally out! (Trilogy is in quotes because while most of the primary plot points concluded, and there isn't a cliff hanger either, there are clear avenues left for more books and I WANT THEM. 

Silver Silence by Nalini Singh

Control. Precision. Family. These are the principles that drive Silver Mercant. At a time when the fledgling Trinity Accord seeks to unite a divided world, with Silver playing a crucial role as director of a worldwide emergency response network, wildness and chaos are the last things she needs in her life. But that's exactly what Valentin Nikolaev, alpha of the StoneWater bears, brings with him.

Valentin has never met a more fascinating woman. Though Silver is ruled by Silence--her mind clear of all emotion--Valentin senses a whisper of fire around her. That's what keeps him climbing apartment buildings to be near her. But when a shadow assassin almost succeeds in poisoning Silver, the stakes become deadly serious...and Silver finds herself in the heart of a powerful bear clan.

Her would-be assassin has no idea what their poison has unleashed...

My Thoughts: Now *this* is the definition of comfort read. The characters were well rounded by familiar, even if this book is technically the kick-off for a new story arc. I wouldn't say any new ground was broken, but I stayed engaged in the couple, their romance, and the story, especially once the second half of the book started.

I'm Looking Forward To:  

A Kiss in Lavender by Laura Florand (September 2017) 

A hardened exile

It had taken Lucien Rosier fifteen years at war to rebuild himself after he lost his family. To remake himself, he had left behind even his name. Now a captain in the Foreign Legion, the last thing he wanted was to face his past. Even for her...

A woman longing for a home

Lucien Rosier had been her hero once, when everyone else had turned away. Now it was Elena Lyon's turn to rescue him. If she could teach him to believe in love and family again, she would pay back her debts. But after a lifetime of abandonment, she wasn't about to make the mistake of believing in love herself. Not even for him...

Could two broken hearts find in each other exactly what they needed to heal?

From international bestselling author Laura Florand, a sensual and heart-warming tale of love, family, and redemption. Explore the south of France, a world of heat and fragrance and tales as old as time, through the stories of the five Rosier cousins, and the women who win their hearts.

Archangel's Viper by Nalini Singh (September 2017) 

Once a broken girl known as Sorrow, Holly Chang now prowls the shadowy gray underground of the city for the angels. But it's not her winged allies who make her a wanted woman--it's the unknown power coursing through her veins. Brutalized by an insane archangel, she was left with the bloodlust of a vampire, the ability to mesmerize her prey, and a poisonous bite.

Now, someone has put a bounty on her head...

Venom is one of the Seven, Archangel Raphael's private guard, and he's as infuriating as he is seductive. A centuries-old vampire, his fangs dispense a poison deadlier than Holly's. But even if Venom can protect Holly from those hunting her, he might not be able to save himself--because the strange, violent power inside Holly is awakening...

No one is safe.

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