Wednesday 31 December 2014

TBR Orphans End of Year Update

As 2014 comes to an end it's time to see how I did on my challenge to read at least one book every month that has been on my shelves for over three months.

December was a slow reading month, but I managed to fit in one last orphaned book: Circle of Desire by Keri Arthur

So that brings the total of TBR Orphans I read in 2014 to 22.
I didn't read any orphaned books in May and November, but read five orphaned books in September and four in June.
So overall my challenge did go well this year.

I will once again set my goals on reading at least one TBR orphan each month in 2015.

I hope you did well on your challenges as well, and I hope you have an amazing New Year's Eve and a wonderful 2015.
May it be filled with happiness and good books!

Tuesday 30 December 2014

The Top Pearls of 2014

And after yesterday's spotlight of one of my Top Pearls authors of 2014 it is now time for my Top Pearls List of 2014!

This year I will first highlight 5 authors who so impressed me with their writing, they ended up on the list with multiple titles. Then I will name some individual books that I loved reading this year as well.

I was late to the party and only started reading Cassandra Clare's The Mortal Instruments series this year. It was the prequel trilogy The Infernal Devices I fell in love with though.

I loved Tin Star by Cecil Castellucci so much, I also tried Boy Proof and Queen of Cool. Those were even better! I will most certainly get my trotters on her other books as well.

Voodoo Bride and I were already fans of Jeffe Kennedy, but this year brought 4 amazing reads, and we were even lucky enough to read an ARC of an upcoming book as well: The Mark of the Tala, The Tears of the Rose, Going Under, Rogue's Paradise and Under His Touch

I devoured the first two books in Shauna Granger's Ash and Ruin trilogy, and I'm eagerly awaiting the last book.

The covers of Shawntelle Madison's Coveted series didn't do much for me, but this fun series showed me that you shouldn't judge a book by its cover.

I was afraid The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addings would be a bit too dry for my tastes, but it turned out to be a wonderful Fantasy read.

Deadland's Harvest by Rachel Aukes was even cooler than the first book in the Deadland trilogy. I'm eagerly awaiting the last book.

Jess Haines continues to blow me away with her books. Enslaved by the Others is awesome and intense.

Servants of the Storm by Delilah S. Dawson is a delightfully creepy and awesome read.

The Katherine "Kitty" Katt series by Gini Koch is still going strong. Universal Alien is the latest addition to this fun series.

It was the cover that made me notice the book, but The Fearless by Emma Pass is an awesome read! I already ordered Pass' other book Acid, because I want more.

And that's my Top Pearls List for 2014.
Let me know what your favorite reads of 2014 were.

And don't forget to enter yesterday's giveaway for one of Jeffe Kennedy's The Twelve Kingdoms books.

Monday 29 December 2014

Top Pearls Interview with Jeffe Kennedy and a Giveaway

The year is almost over, so it's time for my Top Pearls of 2014.

When making my list there was one author who stood out:
Jeffe Kennedy

Voodoo Bride and I read 5 books by Jeffe, and we thought all were Top Pearl Reads. We especially fell in love with her new Fantasy series The Twelve Kingdoms, and the third book in that series is among our most anticipated books of 2015.

So we decided to ask Jeffe for our traditional Top Pearls Interview, and to give away one of her books.

- What was your favorite moment of 2014?
Can I pick a couple? Writing-wise, it was seeing the Tweet that RT Book Reviews gave THE MARK OF THE TALA the June Seal of Excellence ( It had never occurred to me that the book might be highlighted as the best book of the month out of so many hundreds of wonderful books. Because I never knew that could happen, it came as a total surprise – delight without an anxiety of wondering. It was an amazing moment for me. As I look back over the year, though, it was spending a few days on the beach in San Diego with my guy and my family over my birthday that also stands out as really wonderful.

- What will you be doing on New Year's Eve?
We’re going to have another couple over – a writer friend and her graphic artist husband – for dinner. Lots of good food and conversation. And champagne!

- What are you looking forward to in 2015?
So many people are excited for the release of THE TALON OF THE HAWK, the third book in THE TWELVE KINGDOMS, that I’m really looking forward to that coming out. Also, with THE MARK OF THE TALA up for Book of the Year, the RT Convention in May (13-17) should be really fun since I get to be in the awards ceremony. In February I’m going to the Coastal Magic Convention in Florida, which should be really fun, and the RWA convention is in New York City this year in July! I think 2015 will be a great year. J

- What can readers expect from you in 2015?
The next two books in my FALLING UNDER trilogy come out in 2015. UNDER HIS TOUCH comes out January 19 and UNDER CONTRACT around July 13. As I mentioned, THE TALON OF THE HAWK comes out May 26. If all goes as planned, we might see a fourth TWELVE KINGDOMS book next November. Cross your fingers!

One person will win a print copy of either The Mark of the Tala or The Tears of the Rose (winner's choice).

the winner is blodeuedd

Pearls Cast Before a McPig is not responsible for any prizes getting lost in the mail.

Find The Twelve Kingdoms at Bookdepository

Friday 26 December 2014

The Shape of My Heart - Book Review by Voodoo Bride

The Shape of My Heart (2B Trilogy #3)
by Ann Aguirre

What is it about:
Some people wait decades to meet their soul mate. Courtney Kaufman suspects she met hers in high school only to lose him at seventeen. Since then, Courtney's social life has been a series of meaningless encounters, though she's made a few close friends along the way. Especially her roommate Max Cooper, who oozes damaged bad-boy vibes from every pore.

Max knows about feeling lost and trying to move beyond the pain he's been on his own since he was sixteen. Now it's time to find out if he can ever go home again, and Courtney's the only one he trusts to go with him. But the trip to Providence could change everything because the more time he spends with Courtney, the harder it is to reconcile what he wants and what he thinks he deserves.

It started out so simple. One misfit helping another. Now Max will do anything to show Courtney that for every heart that's ever been broken, there's another that can make it complete.

What did Voodoo Bride think of it:
I absolutely adored the first two books in this Contemporary New Adult Romance series, so I had to get my hands on the last book.

And I was a bit disappointed I must say.

I liked Max, he's a very nice guy. Courtney however...

Ok, I know this is probably very personal, but I didn't like the way she made jokes and teased Max and others. It felt like she mocked people. Didn't take them serious. It was that attitude that made me dislike her. And when you dislike one half of a romantic couple, it's hard to invest in that romance.

And sure: her attitude probably all has to do with how she was raised, what happened to her and her first love, etc... But that still doesn't mean I have to like it.

If I had liked Courtney just a bit more this might have been a great book. The story is compelling, and the roadblocks on the way to happiness were convincing as was the way Max and Courtney finally got over them.

All in all this was a nice read, but sadly enough I didn't fall in love with it like I did with the other two books. I will most certainly reread those, but this one I most probably won't.

Why should you read it:
It's a nice Contemporary NA Romance.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Thursday 25 December 2014

On McPig's Wishlist - Suspicion

by Alexandra Monir

A modern-day twist on the classic thriller, Rebecca, with a dash of the supernatural, a powerful romance, and a deadly family mystery.

“There’s something hidden in the maze.”

Seventeen-year-old Imogen Rockford has never forgotten the last words her father said to her, before the blazing fire that consumed him, her mother, and the gardens of her family’s English country manor.

For seven years, images of her parents’ death have haunted Imogen’s dreams. In an effort to escape the past, she leaves Rockford Manor and moves to New York City with her new guardians. But some attachments prove impossible to shake—including her love for her handsome neighbor Sebastian Stanhope.

Then a life-altering letter arrives that forces Imogen to return to the manor in England, where she quickly learns that dark secrets lurk behind Rockford’s aristocratic exterior. At their center is Imogen herself—and Sebastian, the boy she never stopped loving.

Combining spine-tingling mystery, romance, and unforgettable characters, Suspicion is an action-packed thrill ride.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Wednesday 24 December 2014

Circle of Desire - Book Review

Circle of Desire (Damask Circle #3)
by Keri Arthur

What is it about:
In ten years of working for the Damask Circle, shapeshifter Katherine Tanner has never come across anything that goes after kids the way this monster does, and she has never met anything that does to them what this thing does. And it’s not something she wants to confront. But with the Circle’s resources stretched to the limits, she’s given very little choice. The last thing she needs is interference from a cop who has no idea what he’s up against.

Ethan Morgan’s niece is one of the missing children and he has every intention of not only defying the odds and bringing her back alive, but of catching the monster behind these kidnappings and bringing her to justice. Even if he has to break every law in the country to do it. And he's willing to use anyone and everyone to achieve those aims--even a crazy woman who claims to be a witch.

Forced to join forces, Ethan and Kat are drawn to each other, but fight their feelings as they struggle to uncover clues that will lead them to the monster’s lair and battle a seemingly endless supply of zombies and other dead things determined to stop them. But time is ticking away and both know the monster behind these kidnappings rarely keeps her victims alive for more than seven days. And four of those have already gone.

But the greatest threat to Kat might not come from the forces of darkness gathering around them, but from the man she is beginning to love.

Because Ethan is a werewolf...and the full moon is rising...

What did I think of it:
This is a very nice Paranormal Romance.

Of the three books in this series I liked the second one the best. It felt the most solid, and had the best mix of romance and suspense.

This book was very enjoyable, and I loved the suspense part (there were zombies!), but the romance felt a bit off to me. As the title might have told me: it was more about desire than romance. I couldn't believe in the emotional bond between Kat and Ethan. They didn't seem to fit. But that might be just me.

I really liked Kat's grandmother, she was a very interesting character, but her constant presence might also be one of the reasons why the romance didn't work for me. Getting hot and heavy with someone while your grandmother is within hearing distance isn't my idea of fun.

But slightly unsatisfying romance aside this was a very entertaining read, and I will most certainly read other books by Arthur in the future.

Why should you read it:
It's an enjoyable Paranormal Romance

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Tuesday 23 December 2014

Teaser Tuesdays - House Immortal

I'm not making a lot of progress on my reading at the moment, but I'm enjoying this book so far.

"You could still go back," Right Ned said, staring out into the darkness. "We could run. On our own terms. Our own way."

(page 111, House Immortal by Devon Monk)

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: - Grab your current read - Open to a random page - Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) - Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

UNTIL MIDNIGHT - Free e-short + swag giveaway

UNTIL MIDNIGHT is here…and it’s FREE!

Happy Holidays, everyone! I’m Melissa Landers, author of the Alienated series, and I have a present for you—a brand new e-short from Disney Hyperion!

UNTIL MIDNIGHT takes place onboard an intergalactic transport, soon after ALIENATED ends and before the sequel INVADED begins. The story details Aelyx and Cara’s last day together before he returns to Earth to mend the alliance and she continues to his home planet. It’s sweet and romantic, and as a bonus, it includes a four-chapter preview of the sequel, which releases February 3rd.

Oh, and did I mention the best part? IT’S FREE!

You can download UNTIL MIDNIGHT from the following e-tailers:

Google Play:

*If you live outside the USA, no worries. I’ve uploaded the story to Scribd for you. (The only downside is it doesn’t include the bonus preview chapters, due to technical reasons from the publisher.) Link:

To celebrate this new release, I’m offering TWO lucky winners an autographed swag pack complete with a personalized bookplate, mini-poster, bookmarks, and stickers—open internationally! Just fill out the rafflecopter form below.

Best of luck, and happy reading!

BIO: Melissa Landers writes romantic science fiction for teens and the young at heart. To learn more, or just to say hello, visit her at

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday 22 December 2014

Deep Secret - Book Review

Deep Secret (Magids #1)
by Diana Wynne Jones

What is it about:
All over the multiverse the Magids, powerful magicians, are at work to maintain the balance between positive and negative magic, for the good of all.

Rupert Venables is the junior Magid assigned to Earth and to the troublesome planets of the Koyrfonic Empire. When the Emperor dies without a known heir, Rupert is called into service to help prevent the descent of the Empire into chaos. At the same time, the senior Magid on Earth dies, making Rupert a new senior desperately in need of a junior. Rupert thinks his problems are partially solved when he discovers he can meet all five of the potential Magids on Earth by attending one SF convention in England. However, the convention hotel sits on a node, a nexus of the universes. Rupert soon finds that other forces, some of them completely out of control, are there too....

What did I think of it:
Charmed Life by Diana Wynne Jones is one of my all time favorite books, so when I was asked if I wanted to read and review Deep Secret I jumped at the chance.

And this is a really fun book.

It is clear Jones must have loved the idea of multiverses. She used the idea in her Chrestomanci series, and uses it in this book as well. And I must say I love the idea of there being lots of worlds out there, some of them resembling our world, others being very different. I really enjoyed reading about the whole multiverse principle and how it's regulated by Magids.

Rupert is a relatively new Magid. He has the knowledge, but not the experience. He tries to make the best out of a difficult situation, but soon gets in over his head. He's a bit of a nerd, so I immediately connected with him and wanted him to succeed.

There's also parts of the book written from the point of view of another character: Maree. I had more difficulty connecting with Maree, I will confess. Part of it was how she was introduced from Rupert's point of view, part was her actual personality, which is a bit flaky. Luckily she grew on me. I very much liked her younger cousin Nick though.

The story is complex, and seemingly unrelated events later turn out to be connected, making this a read where you have to keep paying attention to what's going on. It's suspenseful, funny and full of action.

If there's one thing I can say against this book, is that a lot of stereotypes are being dragged out. Now of course this book is set largely at a SF convention, but in my opinion a SF convention is more than all the stereotypes that are paraded around here.

But it's a small grumble: overall I very much enjoyed this book, and can recommend it to everyone who likes a fun and good Fantasy read.

Why should you read it:
It's a very enjoyable Fantasy read.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Friday 19 December 2014

The Fearless - Book Review

The Fearless
by Emma Pass

What is it about:
The Fearless. An army, powered by an incredible new serum that makes each soldier stronger, sharper, faster than their enemies. Intended as a force for good, the serum has a terrible side-effect - anyone who takes it is stripped of all humanity, empathy, love. And as the Fearless sweep through the country, forcing the serum on anyone in their path, society becomes a living nightmare.

Cass remembers the night they passed through her village. Her father was Altered. Her mother died soon after. All Cass has left is her little brother - and when Jori is snatched by the Fearless and taken to their hellish lair, Cass must risk everything to get him back.

What did I think of it:
I will confess this book caught my eye because of the cover. Then I read the blurb, and it sounded so cool I had to add the book to my wishlist. So I was over the moon when I got The Fearless as a present from a friend.

Did it live up to my expectations?


The idea of a serum turning people into unfeeling monsters might not be new (zombies anyone), but Pass does a great job on making it feel new and frightening. The fact that the Fearless are still living humans, adds to the horror in my opinion.

The story starts when Cass is ten and the Fearless invade the UK. She is one of the lucky few who end up on a secluded island, away from the mayhem the Fearless bring with them.

After this introduction to Cass, the Fearless and the setting the story skips to seven years later. Cass' brother Jori is kidnapped by Fearless, and Cass has to leave the safety of the island if she wants to rescue him.

The story is told from three different viewpoints: Cass, Sol, Cass' childhood friend, and Myo, a boy who survived on the mainland and who offers to help Cass on her rescue mission.

I loved the setting of this book. First the island where Cass spent 7 years of her life, and then the world outside of this safe haven. Cass encounters many dangers, and there's a constant threat. Are the Fearless out there? What other dangers lurk? Who is Myo, and what is he hiding? Will Cass find her brother in time? I was on the edge of my seat and couldn't put this book down.

I loved reading about the journey Cass has to make to find her brother, and the things she encounters. Pass not only knows how to write action-packed scenes, but also managed to add lots of intense emotional moments.

All in all this book drew me in and wouldn't let me go until I had finished it. It's an awesome Post Apocalyptic read. You can be sure I will get my trotters on Acid, another book by Pass, and I can only hope Pass will decide to write many more Post Apocalyptic awesomeness.

Why should you read it:
It's an awesome Post Apocalyptic YA read.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Thursday 18 December 2014

Winter Warmers - Promo Post by Felicity Heaton


It’s that time of year again where we look forward to the holidays and a new year, and what better way to celebrate and relax than with FOUR FREE books and SIX 99c / 99p books?

That’s right, my Winter Warmers (or Summer Scorchers if you’re south of the equator) are back and this year I have some fantastic deals for you.

Not only can you get your hands on my usual four free paranormal romance ebooks, three of which are firsts in series and one of which is a seasonal offering perfect for the holidays, but you can also get six ebooks at incredible discounts for a limited time only. Those books will be just 99c or 99p until January 15th 2015, representing a total saving of $14 / £7, so be sure to check them out and grab them before the offer ends. And don’t forget to tell your book-addicted friends!

You can find all the links to your favourite retailers such as Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Apple and Kobo Books, and discover more about the books over at my website:


Excerpt from Hunter’s Moon
The hunters maintained their silence as they wove through the woods, giving Nicolae difficulty. It was hard to move without making a sound when the leaf litter was so deep and crisp. He placed each paw carefully, moving with stealth and keeping far enough away that they wouldn’t hear him.
“I still say that she went up,” one of the men whispered after they had been walking for over twenty minutes and Nicolae caught sight of the leader through the dense tree trunks.
The man held his hand up in a fist and the group halted. Nicolae stopped too, one paw in the air. It trembled with the exertion of holding it there. He gradually lowered it to the ground, holding his breath as he did so, and then exhaled when none of the hunters looked his way. The leader turned towards the man who had spoken and something silent passed between them.
Nicolae knew a threat when he felt it. It seemed the man who had spoken did too because he bent his head and remained silent as the group continued down towards the glade. Nicolae reached out with his senses, searching for both the wolf pack and the prey of the hunters. Could it be a bear?
They had talked about her being quick. Bears were fast when they had to be. He’d been on the receiving end of a few charges in his lifetime. They weren’t as fast as wolves though.
He sensed the timber wolf pack on the grazing land far below. The alpha howled and Nicolae paid him no heed, only using the sound to confirm their position on his senses was correct. He couldn’t feel any other animals besides a few birds and small creatures. The high-tech crossbows these men were packing said that they weren’t after prey smaller than a wolf, not unless they enjoyed a challenge. Even then, they would probably go after big game. Hunting large animals with only a bow would be more exciting and dangerous. A challenge most hunters would relish. Which brought him back around to bears.
The men stopped a few hundred metres up the mountain from the glade. Their leader raised his goggles, looked towards the rugged horizon, and then turned towards the other three.
“She might have gone to ground.” It was the one who had almost seen him. The leader looked thoughtful, his face shadowed and difficult to make out.
Two of the men he hadn’t got a good look at earlier were in broken moonlight now, their night-vision goggles pushed up on their foreheads. They were young, one of them around his late twenties and the other into his thirties. Nicolae suspected it had been the youngest man who had sounded scared. The other one had a hard set to his jaw and coldness in his eyes. The sort of look a man got after seeing a lot of death.
Nicolae had that look sometimes.
“I shot her.” There was certainty in the man’s gravelly voice. None of the others looked as though they were about to doubt him.
Nicolae sniffed, trying to catch a scent on the chill air. If they had shot whatever animal they were after, then it would be bleeding. He would be able to track it.
“The poison will take care of her in that case.”
Nicolae froze. Poison? He looked at the bolts loaded in the crossbows. Just what was it they had shot and now wanted to find? Hunters didn’t normally poison their prey.
Not unless their prey was strong enough to survive arrows and bullets and come after them. He shook that thought away. There was no reason for him to get jittery. In the century he had lived in the area, not once had anyone attacked the werewolves.
“I don’t want to risk it. I want to find her.” The leader this time.
The alpha wolf howled again and Nicolae listened.
They were hunting something.
Nicolae tensed, torn between breaking cover and heading down to see what the wolves had smelt, and remaining to listen to the men and ensure they left the mountain.
He raised his nose to the breeze and sniffed. He could smell it now, sharp and coppery, coming up from the valley.
A bolt zipped past him, thudding into a tree barely inches from his nose. Nicolae ran, keeping his rear down and weaving through the narrow gaps between the trees to cover himself. Another bolt narrowly missed him.
“Don’t waste ammo unless you’re sure it’s what we’re here after,” the leader said.
Nicolae pounded through the forest, away from the men and down towards the valley. He picked up the scent of blood and followed the trail. It grew stronger, fresh and sharp in the clear air, cutting through it. He sniffed the ground at intervals, trying to see if the animal had bled onto it so he could investigate the scent and determine what sort of creature it was.
The pine trees grew dense around him as he neared the glade. Their scent obscured the subtler one of the blood, making it impossible for him to tell what it belonged to. It didn’t smell animal.
It wasn’t werewolf.
He rounded a tree and spotted something in the clearing ahead.
The timber wolves broke out of the woods on the other side to Nicolae, heading for the body. His heart slammed against his ribs and he crashed through the undergrowth and out into the glade. He dashed across the open ground, passing the body, and leapt into the group, snarling and snapping at them, driving them back. His teeth clashed with those of the more persistent wolves but he was careful not to draw blood. His attack wasn’t about hurting them. It was purely to force them to leave the human alone. It was to protect them. If they ate the body, the locals would hunt them down and slaughter them all. He couldn’t allow that to happen.
The alpha growled.
The rest of the pack cowered, lowering their rears and bowing their heads. Some of the younger ones at the back whimpered and whined.
The grey alpha came forward, smaller than Nicolae but bigger than the other wolves, and stared at him.
Nicolae breathed hard and held the alpha’s yellow gaze.
The pack was hungry. With winter setting in, it was important that they fed well, but he couldn’t allow them to harm this human. The alpha didn’t move. Nicolae could understand his need to protect his pack and provide for them.
He huffed, turning the air misty for a second with his warm breath, and then came to a decision. He looked deep into the alpha’s eyes, communicating with him alone. He would hunt and leave them a deer at his cabin in exchange for the human. Was that acceptable?
The alpha wolf stared at him a moment longer and then turned and trotted silently into the forest. The pack followed.
Nicolae huffed again.
He would do as he had promised and give them a deer as soon as he could go out and hunt. During harsher winters, he often provided for them. Wolves were a proud race, just like their werewolf brethren, but this pack no longer took offence at his offerings.
Nicolae knew the pain of not being able to provide for the pack, of failing in his duty to protect them, and because of those experiences he knew that he had asked a lot of the alpha tonight. He was grateful the wolf had chosen to accept the deer and, to show it, he would find the largest one he could.
He turned and sniffed his way back to the human. She lay on the leaf litter, motionless and pale. Covered in blood. It had a strange smell. Some part of it was human but the scent was different, familiar. Was it the poison that made it smell so wrong?
The woman’s eyes were closed, her fair hair spread across the ground in a golden wave. Moonlight shone down into the glade, the bare branches of the trees splitting it into bright shafts that bathed her. He sniffed again and listened. No heartbeat but he couldn’t be sure. Twin darts punctured her black fatigues, one in the left of her chest, up from her heart, and the second in the right side of her stomach. Could she have survived that?
He caught the scent of the hunters on the darts.
Why had they killed her?
She was dressed like them.
Nicolae listened again for a pulse. None came.
There were some things that he couldn’t do as a wolf. He shuffled back a few paces to give himself more room and then focused. His bones popped and body twisted, the black fur on it slowly disappearing as he transformed back into his normal form. He grimaced and growled quietly, containing his pain for fear of alerting the hunters to his presence. He wasn’t sure if they had gone and he wasn’t sure if the woman was dead. He couldn’t let either of them know what he was. His ribs stretched and his limbs cracked back into human forms still covered in patches of fur. It swept backwards, towards his shoulders, revealing deformed fingers that pushed out into normal shapes. His muzzle compressed, his teeth receding, and he moved onto his hind legs, standing with a wobble. Pain ripped down his spine with the final shift of his bones beneath his now human skin, and he bit back his desire to throw his head back and scream out his agony.
Nicolae clenched his fists and breathed deep, waiting with closed eyes for the pain to pass and his heartbeat to level again.
Centuries of life as a werewolf and whenever he spent too long in his animal form, he still felt the pain as he had during the first change.
The moment it subsided, he crouched beside the woman, naked and unashamed. He touched her throat. She was cold and he couldn’t feel a pulse. Dead.
He ran his hand over his messy dark hair and frowned, thinking over what he should do.
His gaze assessed the two darts. Blood saturated the black material around them. He touched it, brought his fingers to his nose, and sniffed. He could smell the poison. Strong. Why had the hunters killed her? If he had found her before coming across the hunters, he would have said they had belonged to the same party. Only this woman wasn’t armed.
Nicolae looked around the clearing for a weapon.
When he looked back at the woman, she was staring at him with dark eyes.
Her left fist flew towards him.
Nicolae rolled backwards into a crouch, barely avoiding the punch. She lunged, trying to grab him, gasping and wheezing. Blood pumped from around the arrow in her abdomen. The dart must have punctured her lung.
His gaze met hers again and he froze. The words of warning to keep still fled his lips.
Fiery orange eyes pinned him with the deadliest of stares.
She bore her fangs and Nicolae backed away, his eyes still locked with hers, panic sending an icy wave through his blood.
What was a vampire of the Nocens bloodline doing in Canada?
She snarled and then slumped backwards, hitting the dirt hard. Nicolae didn’t move. He couldn’t tell if she was dead or not but he wasn’t about to risk his neck by checking her. His gaze darted between the arrows. There was a lot of blood on her, and around the glade. The arrows were poisoned. He dragged in a shaky breath.
The scent of her blood hit him and, now that he knew why he recognised it, he couldn’t bear the smell.
Nicolae shook his head at the first assault of memories, desperate to keep them at bay. He wasn’t there now. He was free. He had paid for it in blood and death, but he was free. The images came, relentless, horrifying visions of violence and pain, punishment in dark barred corridors, screams that echoed through the entire compound. He fell forwards, breathing hard, clawing the dirt into his fists and holding on. Cries. Blood. The sting of the whip against his back. He arched forwards and growled, his teeth elongating. The laughter of his cruel masters. His neck burned, aching under the pressing weight of an iron collar. The humiliation of his brethren.
Blood ran in a fetid river before his eyes, trickling over damp dark stones and along the gutter in front of the cells, mixing with faeces and urine. Shackles clanked in the dim light. Bars rattled under the duress of a fruitless attack by a prisoner.
He wasn’t there.
Nicolae yelled his rage at the starlit sky. It burst from him, desperate and feral in its sound, and echoed around the distant mountains. A disconsolate howl from the valley answered him. The alpha. The sound of it and the message it contained soothed him and granted him relief. He shut the pain down, clearing his mind of the past and focusing on the present, but there was no comfort in it now.
His gaze snapped to the vampire.
He pushed himself back onto his feet and stood over her, staring with hatred burning in his gut. The hunters were still searching for her, and it wouldn’t be long before they reached where he was. They would finish her off. If she managed to survive both the hunters and the poison until daybreak, then nature would take care of her. The sky was clear. When the sun rose, it would spill into the glade. She wouldn’t be strong enough to escape it. Her kind deserved to feel pain.
He would never involve himself with vampires.
He strode away from her.
No matter how beautiful they were.
That thought arrested his steps. He frowned over his shoulder at her. The cold air curled around him, chilling and stiffening his bare body. He stared at the vampire and then at the horizon through the trees, and realised with self-loathing that he wasn’t strong enough to do it. As much as he despised her kind, he wasn’t a monster like them. She wasn’t the same bloodline as the ones who had enslaved him. She had done nothing to deserve his bitterness. If he left her, it would plague him and he would regret it. If he needed a reason to help her, he would do it for the sake of information about the hunters. They had to be the reason that she was so far from home.
Nicolae went back to her. She looked small and fragile as she lay on the dirt. Her appearance belied her true nature but it couldn’t fool his senses. When she had come around, he had felt her strength. Was she strong enough to fight the poison? He placed his palm against her forehead. She wasn’t burning up yet. If the poison was the type most vampire hunters used, then there was still time to help her.
Part of him said to leave her. Her kind had given him nothing but pain. She should feel it in return.
He couldn’t bring himself to do such a thing. Watching a dying vampire succumb to the sun and poison would be a petty form of vengeance. His heart had let go of his desire for revenge almost fifty years ago now, cleansed by his quiet life in the wilderness. Only the nightmarish memories kept it alive in him.
Nicolae sighed and picked her up, shifting her into his arms and cradling her against his bare chest in a way that didn’t disturb the bolts. If she woke again, he would drop her in a flash and distance himself. He doubted that she would though. She had probably used the last of her strength fighting him.
Was he really going to do this? If he brought her into his home, if he helped her heal, then he would be helping the enemy.
In times of war, it was acceptable to help the enemy of your enemy. The hunters had tried to kill her. They were a threat to everything he had built here, and everyone that he knew.
He had to help her.
Even when he knew it would place him in danger.
The hunters were after her.
They would be after him too now.


Now, here’s more about each book that is on offer:

Discounted books include:


Olivia thinks it’s her lucky night when a dangerously handsome unconscious fae ends up on her inspection table. He’s her chance to redeem herself with her employer, the demon-hunting organisation, Archangel. But when the tall, dark and deadly immortal warrior awakes, she gets much more than she bargained for…


A heat wave isn't the only thing making London too hot for lawyer Kim. She's been spending each night with a man who sets her body and heart on fire. The problem? He's a man who always sprouts black fur and purrs, and he's only a dream. Walking into her office, the last thing she expects is to meet Erik, a man who sends her temperature soaring and who resembles her dream guy exactly.


Lukas is gorgeous and way out of Annelie's league, but when he confesses that he wants her, she can't resist his passionate kiss and seizes the moment, and Lukas, with both hands. But Lukas has a secret, one that will test Annelie's love for him and threaten to tear them apart. He's a fallen angel. Can she help him prove he didn't commit a terrible crime? Is she brave enough to love an angel?


Callum has come to the city of romance on business, not pleasure, but when he sets eyes on a gorgeous werewolf in a nightclub, he can’t ignore the dark carnal craving she ignites in him. His work for Vampirerotique, the erotic theatre he runs with three other vampires, can wait. The only thing that matters now is satisfying his sinful hunger for a woman who most vampires would consider an enemy.


In a world of darkness and danger, Prophecy will fight to her limit to save the vampire she loves and stop a terrible evil from unleashing Hell on Earth. When her visions show her the dark path they must take, will Prophecy and Valentine be able to do what is necessary to win against the mounting threat of a mysterious enemy?


The horror of the night he failed to save his werewolf pack from the cruelty of their vampire masters has haunted Nicolae for one hundred years, driving him deep into the Canadian wilderness in search of peace. That peace is threatened when unfamiliar hunters and the scent of blood lead him to a beautiful vampire and a hard decision—face his past and help her or risk losing everyone again.

Free books include:


A vampire unlike any other, Prophecy lives life in the dark until the night she encounters a sensual dark-haired vampire who is both her enemy and the man who will change her world forever. When she discovers her extraordinary destiny, will she be strong enough to embrace it and stop a deadly war from igniting?


Serenity is shocked when a gorgeous black-winged angel shows up in her city of Paris claiming that she called him when she was only casting a simple vengeance spell. He's no other than the angel of death! When Apollyon offers to obey her and help her have revenge on her cheating ex, she can't resist the temptation, but can she resist him? Can an angel ever fall for a mortal woman like her?


Javier knows better than to succumb to his hunger for Lilah. The mortal female belongs to a powerful aristocrat patron of Vampirerotique, the theatre he runs with three other vampires. A single touch is all it would take to break the sacred law of his kind, sentencing himself to death, but his passion for her has become too fierce to ignore and he will risk everything to make Lilah his.


It was one last mission. Shannon, a hunter, is desperate to ditch the small town and her vampire partner, Rafe. Things are getting complicated and she wants out, but Rafe isn't about to let the woman he's fallen for go so easily. Can Rafe make her see that he loves her and make her face her feelings? Will a wish on a star bring Shannon what her heart truly desires--a vampire for Christmas?

Author Bio

Felicity Heaton

Felicity Heaton is a New York Times and USA Today international best-selling author writing passionate paranormal romance books. In her books, she creates detailed worlds, twisting plots, mind-blowing action, intense emotion and heart-stopping romances with leading men that vary from dark deadly vampires to sexy shape-shifters and wicked werewolves, to sinful angels and hot demons! If you're a fan of paranormal romance authors Lara Adrian, J R Ward, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Gena Showalter and Christine Feehan then you will enjoy her books too.

If you love your angels a little dark and wicked, the best-selling Her Angel series is for you. If you like strong, powerful, and dark vampires then try the Vampires Realm series or any of her stand-alone vampire romance books. If you’re looking for vampire romances that are sinful, passionate and erotic then try the best-selling Vampire Erotic Theatre series. Or if you prefer huge detailed worlds filled with hot-blooded alpha males in every species, from elves to demons to dragons to shifters and angels, then take a look at the new Eternal Mates series.

If you want to know more about Felicity, or want to get in touch, you can find her at the following places: | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | GoodReads | Amazon

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Wednesday 17 December 2014

Burn For Me - Book Review

Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy #1)
by Ilona Andrews

What is it about:
Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career—a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn’t sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she’s kidnapped by Connor “Mad” Rogan—a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.

Rogan’s after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she’s getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world.

What did I think of it:
Although I wasn't impressed by the first Kate Daniels book, I really liked the Edge series by Andrews. I've been told to try the second book in the Kate Daniels series, as it does seem to get better after the first book, but I've not been that brave just yet. Still I was curious when I heard about this new series, so I was very happy when I got Burn For Me as a present from Melliane.

And this is a really cool read.

I very much enjoyed the setting. It's an alternate world setting: very much like our world, but at some point magic was introduced. And this magic shaped society. The Andrews duo sure thought about how magic would change the world and what influence it would have on those who have magic, and those who have little to no magic. The world that was created felt real and logical.

I also really loved Nevada and her family. They were fun and it was clear they cared about each other. I especially liked Nevada's grandmother, who sounds like someone who deserves her own story to be honest.

Rogan is a really cool character. I liked how his magic shaped his personality and his morals. He's almost not human anymore, and that made it interesting to see how he would react to things.

The romantic tension between Rogan and Nevada was slow and a bit frustrating at times for me. I'm glad this series will most probably be a trilogy, because if the romantic tension and its conclusion is spread out even further than that I might not be able to cope.

The story overall is really cool and suspenseful. There are some things that seemed pretty obvious to me, but others left me wondering and guessing. The ending gave enough closure for now that I'm not frustrated, but you can bet I'm going to get my trotters on the next book, because I want more.

Why should you read it:
It's a really cool Paranormal Romance.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Tuesday 16 December 2014

Teaser Tuesdays - The Shape Of My Heart

Both his brows shot up, and for, like, thirty seconds, he seemed as if he wasn't sure if he should laugh or run. "You're a freak, you know that, right?"

(page 119, The Shape Of My Heart by Ann Aguirre)

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: - Grab your current read - Open to a random page - Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) - Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!