Review: A Vampire’s Passion (A Romance In Central City, Book 3) by Jordan K. Rose

a vampire's passionReviewed by Sandra Scholes

Synopsis: Brandt is aware of homeless going missing and an evil army vowing to take control of the city, but if he has anything to do with it, they won’t get the chance. Brandt has enough trouble on a reconnaissance mission to find out more on Menhadens, a restaurant in Central City. There he meets Rachel a waitress working there who takes his fancy almost in an instant with her amazing blue eyes.

Review: We first meet Brandt when he’s busy scoping Menhadens for the kind of people who enter the establishment. Brandt doesn’t like having a sidekick, and certainly not one he labels as the world’s most irritating vampire, Garrison. After being on Earth for a hundred years, he still can’t get on with people the way he hopes. He always gets ribbed about being anti-social by his sidekick and anyone else who knows him. When he meets Rachel she’s the most stubborn woman he has ever met, but there is something about her he can’t resist, even being a vampire.

He and Garrison are looking into the dangerous and cruel experiments that Panthera Laboratories are getting up to, and he is afraid that Rachel might also be getting caught up in them. Raymond Tyrone is the kingpin and things could get bad if anyone finds out. Rachel might have an attitude that offends the ones who eat at Menhadens, yet out of work she’s a caring person who feeds a street guy affectionately called “Hank.” She remembers growing up poor as a kid, and doesn’t mind sneaking food out of the work’s kitchens if it means saving someone from starving. Brandt begins to question his standing as a vampire when she has the ability to resist him, even though he is more than interested in her being the one for him. Rachel compliments Brandt’s lack of human warmth toward the men he works with, as she is compassionate even if she is stubborn.

Good Bits:

  • The humour that runs through the whole novel.
  • Brandt is a very well thought out character and proves it.
  • A place called Crap Alley and who coined the name.

Summary: This is a vampire cop mystery that will interest those interested in supernatural romance, and though it might seem that Brandt and Rachel aren’t made for each other, it could be said readers might change their minds half way through.

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: A Vampire’s Passion: A Romance In Central City, Novella Three

Audio Review: Conversion (Conversion, Book 1) by S.C. Stephens

conversionHero: Teren Adams is a gorgeous twenty-something year old architect who just so happens to be part vampire. He really wants things to work with Emma and can’t believe she’s still with him after the dropping the news of his vampirism. He’s terrified of her meeting his family – because they’re pushing for babies and are worried he’s going to die soon and not be able to make any. He and Emma aren’t even married yet!

Heroine: Emma can’t believe Teren is a vampire… or part vampire. He has a heartbeat. It’s kind of cool – she thinks -she’s not sure. Meeting his parents seems a little sudden and gulp they’re vampires too. His great-grandma is even a full fledged vampire. Yikes! But then they drop the bomb that the two need to quickly make a baby because Teren will die and reach his vampire maturity. That’s a real kicker. Maybe even a deal-breaker.

Review: This story has a punchy beginning which is especially cute but it skips forward past the romance and starts again after the characters are in love. Teren reveals his half-vampire status and it’s a race in the sack to get pregnant because he’s about to cross over into his more vampiric state. That bugged me. I would have preferred wooing, romancing, sexing, marrying, and eventually babying… but the story went all over the place on that score and sex scenes became very sterile. It drags a bit through the “I’m a vampire” “No way” “Yes. See fangs?” “Oh my gosh! Fangs!” “Fangs.” “You’re a vampire!” stage. There’s also a lot of animal magnetism in the book which I didn’t like. The story picks up when a vampire hunter kidnaps them. Will Emma and Teren live through it or will they both be murdered in vengeance?

Narrator: Piper Goodeve has a nice voice and is the main reason I was able to get through the whole book. She does an excellent job narrating.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

Buy: Conversion, Conversion (Audio Book)

Review: The Mark of the Midnight Manzanilla (Pink Carnation, Book 11) by Lauren Willig

mark of the midnight manzanillaReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Make sure to read the Prologue because it prepares the reader for the first chapter.

Sally Fitzhugh is at an evening soirée and she has an interesting discussion with friends.  Lucien, the Duke of Belliston, has a late night visitor and they have an interesting discussion – there’s no way you can stop reading now.  Believe me, if you like to read historical, paranormal, and time travel romances by the end of chapter two this author will have you hooked.

Sally has an interesting personality and she’s a woman who doesn’t mind trying to figure things out.  This author could have left that story at that and just let things unfold from there but she took it a step further- she’s added in a mystery to be solved.  And don’t worry about wondering if you’ll be lost between the past and present – the author lets you know so there’s no confusion.

This was a book that looks to be part of a great series.  My only disappointment was that I didn’t start reading this author’s work before now.  I found that this book could be read as a stand-alone so you don’t need to read any of the other books to understand what is going on here.  My only hope is that if you liked this book as much as I did, and you haven’t read this series before, you will want to go back and read more about the ladies of the Pink Carnation.  If you’re patient, book twelve is scheduled to come out next August.

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: The Mark of the Midnight Manzanilla: A Pink Carnation Novel

Heroes Who Think They’re Villains

fangsandfloggersmedGuest blog by Saloni Quinby, author of Fangs and Floggers (Weapons of Redemption)

Although I love many different types of characters, my favorites are the redeemed villain and the antihero. There’s nothing more intriguing than a man or woman with a murky past who at some point in their story, manages to do the right thing.

I like characters who do what they must to achieve their objectives, who make tough decisions, not concerned about approval from others. Depending on your point of view, that can make the character a hero or a villain.

The best villains are the ones who, in some twisted way, believe they’re doing the right thing. Deep inside, they recognize that their decisions hurt others and they regret it, but in their mind, they’re sacrificing for the greater good. These characters have the potential to cross over to hero or antihero status.

Even if a villain redeems himself, his past is not erased. He can’t undo the damage he’s done, but he can change his future. He might reconcile with some of his old adversaries, but he’ll always have enemies. His inner struggle is part of what makes him endearing. Without it, he’d be one dimensional and like a hero who’s completely golden, he would be hard to connect with.

Most people have both a good and an evil side. The appeal of villains and antiheroes is their imperfect nature. It makes them easier to relate to, since everyone has made mistakes and there are times when we all have to choose between being an angel or a monster.

In my Weapons of Redemption series, I enjoyed developing the villain, Tarun, and finally giving him the chance to tell his story in the last book in the series. Fangs and Floggers delves into the vampire pirate’s past, showing why he chose his wicked path.

I hope you enjoy the following excerpt from Weapons of Fangs and Floggers (Weapons of Redemption).

How do you feel about villains and antiheroes? Like them or hate them?

Weapons of Redemption 5: Fangs and Floggers by Saloni Quinby

(M/M Erotic Vampire)

It is said that every villain thinks he’s a hero, but what about the hero who thinks he’s a villain? Eventually he becomes what he believes himself to be. Still, he has the soul of a hero and only if he lets it guide him again will he find redemption.

Adrian had written those words in his journal just hours ago, when his lover had been at the threshold of salvation or destruction. Tarun had been whole in body then, but shattered in mind for more centuries than Adrian could fathom. Now his body was in the same state as his mind — seriously damaged but possible to restore.

Adrian had tried to warn him that his blood sons would attempt to destroy him tonight, but Tarun had been determined to welcome them home. It had nearly cost his life.

The van carrying Adrian, Tarun and two of his lover’s minions who were necessary for this escape, sped down the dark country road.

“I don’t know why I’m trusting you,” Dirk, the burly redheaded vampire driving the van called into the back section where Tarun lay on the verge of death, Adrian beside him. Cara, a rare medical doctor who specialized in vampires, worked at saving Tarun’s life.

“Because you know you can,” Adrian replied. “Now shut up and focus on driving.”

“And slow down!” Cara snapped. “Hit another bump like the last one and we’ll probably lose him.”

“Well it won’t take Bryce and the others long to figure out what happened to us. Then we’ll all die. Except Adrian. His damn vampire-killer brother will probably make sure he stays alive.”

“Don’t be so sure,” Adrian said softly. One thing about Shane, he lived by his own code and no one changed his mind once it was set.

Or at least that’s what Adrian had thought. He’d been shocked to learn that Shane had taken a vampire lover — unfortunately Bryce was Tarun’s archenemy. He had been the first to rebel against Tarun. The first to bide his time and turn more of Tarun’s blood children against him.

The problem was, like most vampires as well as most humans, they were completely ignorant of the truth — the hidden truth. Both Shane and Adrian had been born with certain gifts that had enabled them to become great vampire hunters. Both were immune to vampiric mind control, but Adrian had an additional gift — he could read vampires.

Everyone had secrets, some so deep that they even disguised them from themselves. After nearly three thousand years, Tarun had many secrets.

“You need to pull over,” Cara said. “The bullet is very close to his heart. I need everything to be still for me to help him. Adrian, you’ll have to assist me.”

“Where should I pull over?” Dirk demanded.

“Anywhere!” Cara shouted.

The brakes screeched as he pulled off the side of the road, behind a clump of bushes.

Cara released a pent-up breath. Glancing at Adrian, she said, “Ready?”

“I’d better be,” he replied.

As a vampire hunter, Adrian was no stranger to blood and injury. He and Shane had patched each other up countless times over the years. This was different. It was the first time Adrian had ever wanted to save a dying vampire.

Glancing at Tarun’s pale, angular face, he thought about how tumultuous their relationship had been. Tarun had started out as his enemy. The vampire had wanted to slay him, but something drew them together. It wasn’t just sex — although that was amazing. Despite how they appeared to be total opposites, their lives were similar in many ways. They understood each other. Adrian had never felt this way about anyone. Now that he’d found his soul mate, he didn’t want to lose him.

Buy: Fangs and Floggers (Weapons of Redemption)

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Contest

To enter the following contest, you must be 18 or over.

To enter for the chance to win a pdf download of Weapons of Redemption 5: Fangs and Floggers, please leave a comment. A winner will be drawn three days from the day of this original post. Thank you!

About Saloni Quinby

The child of a painter and a psychic dreamer, Saloni Quinby feels spirituality and storytelling go hand-in-hand. She loves the scent of gardenia, the sound of wind chimes and the taste of honey. By listening to what isn’t said, she creates works based on unspoken desires. Saloni prefers blurred gender lines and many varieties of romance. In a world where passion must at times be restrained, she believes erotica is a pleasure to be shared. With her stories she would like to make her fantasies yours and hopes you enjoy the ride. She also writes under the name Kate Hill. Please visit her online at http://www.kate-hill.com, http://www.twitter.com/katehillromance and https://www.facebook.com/kate.hill.92505.

Buy: Fangs and Floggers (Weapons of Redemption)

Review: Bite Me Your Grace by Brooklyn Ann

Bite Me Your GraceReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

This story takes place in 1821, London.

Angelica Winthrop’s mother threw away her favorite book. If you’re interested, the book actually exists and you can find information at A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. She’s an independent woman during a period in time where most women did not act like Angelica. As I get to know Angelica, I have to wonder what she would think about today’s women.

Our hunky hero’s name is Ian Ashton. He’s the Duke of Burnrath and he’s different from other men. Ian is a man with lots of responsibilities but then he meets Angelica. He also has an archenemy named Ben Flannigan. He’s a character that could have overtaken the storyline but Brooklyn does a great job of having him appear at just the right time.

Angelica and Ian seem to be the perfect couple. But all good romances have roadblocks that pop up for the “happy” couple. These roadblocks keep me turning the page. I need to find out how they handle life’s little challenges. They rise above these challenges and become stronger as a couple. Brooklyn also shows her readers what Angelica and Ian are willing to do for each other.

This is a book that gives you a great regency romance along with a paranormal twist. I also wanted to know if Brooklyn was going to have another book. I went to her web site, http://brooklynann.blogspot.com/, and found that there will indeed be a book two of this series titled One Bite Per Night coming out in November. The only thing I couldn’t find out was who the book was going to be about. So in the meantime, make sure to read Bite Me, Your Grace.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy: Bite Me, Your Grace

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Review: Avalon Revisited by O.M. Grey

Avalon Revisited by OM GreyReviewed by Sandra Scholes

Vampires in fiction can be from any time period, newly made; older than time itself, but Arthur Tudor is one of the older kind who has hidden his vampire existence from the public for many long years. While on an airship, he meets a vampire slayer to be just too good to pass up, Avalon, and together they make the steampunk equivalent of Holmes and Watson in order to find out the murderer who stalks the streets of Victorian England.

Arthur delights in telling his victims his true Tudor lineage before he takes their lives as he is a real descendant of Henry Tudor, and sees nothing wrong it them knowing who he really is, though it’s not exactly great that he has to keep it secret from the living. To them he is known as only Lord York.

Avalon Revisited is full of the usual courtesy and drama associated with period romance novels, but this lifts the dress and the petticoats of this Victorian erotic story with Arthur acting as rake, and saviour for all women. Unlike most vampire stories, Arthur can be seen in a mirror, though in this particular story, his reflection fades with each century that passes, and he also reveals another secret to the reader, that he was once Spring-Heeled Jack, the terror of Victorian England. His reason for not continuing his scourge on the women there was simple, once a kill on sight order was put out; he felt it necessary to stop his killings.

Arthur is captivated by Avalon and like him, she has a mystery surrounding her name she attributes to having a father obsessed by Arthurian legend. As she has “spunk” as he puts it, he is very much interested in her, and takes it upon him to be around her for most of the journey. It takes a while, but Arthur gets to be alone with her, and that is when the fun starts. Along the course of the novel, we meet Nicholas, a friend of his with similar tastes in women, though he prefers them younger and less restrained in a marriage. Arthur dodges and weaves around the women who would hamper him from talking to Avalon, who he finds most interesting in conversation. She finds him the same, and wants to be with him, and this makes the story more of a tease rather than a standard erotic romp as readers are made to wait before being satisfied – and it’s not bad to have your desires fulfilled after a long while.

Avalon Revisited is filled with rakes, rakehells and a dashing number of loose women – it’s perfect for those evenings when you want to be huddled in bed, but are still awake and need an excuse.

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: Avalon Revisited

What Makes a Romantic Couple Work?

Blood Spirit Guest Blog by Gabrielle Bisset, author of Blood Spirit

Thanks so much for having me at Love, Romance, Passion blog today! What a great name for a blog! I’m celebrating the release of the third book in my Sons of Navarus series, Blood Spirit, and the celebration doesn’t stop until the last day of October. All month the Blood Spirit/Sons of Navarus Paranormal Fall Fling giveaway has weekly prizes along with grand prizes of gift cards, ebooks, and cool Sons of Navarus swag at the end of the fling. Be sure to keep reading after the post for details on how to enter!

What makes a romantic couple work? I’m thinking many souls have thought about that question at some point in their lives. What brings two people together isn’t the same thing that keeps them together. This is true in romance novels, although since the romance genre requires a HEA, it’s a foregone conclusion that couples will work in the end.

My hero and heroine in Blood Spirit, Terek and Ilona, are as different as night and day. Physically, they are exactly that. He’s olive skinned, with black hair and green eyes, while she’s light skinned, blonde, with brown eyes. He’s quiet and seductive, whereas she’s quite vocal about her opinions and often unsure of herself. It’s an odd combination, to say the least.

While I write paranormal romance that focuses on vampires, I always give my characters a real life foundation to base their attraction on so that it’s plausible that they would remain together, even if the HEA wasn’t assured. The foundation is usually a very simple one: respect. Over the course of the book, my hero and heroine in each book grow to respect one another. Of course, since it’s romance, they’re madly in love and sexually crazy about one another, but below that is that solid basis of respect. My heroes care about the women they love, even more than desire them. And my heroines find that the men who charmed them just chapters before are so much more than eye candy.

Romance novels are often about the most fantastic things, but for me, what always makes me love my characters by the end of their books is that they’re like me in the ways that count most. Whether they be vampires or humans, men or women, they have always been searching for that one soul that truly cares about them.

Thanks again for having me here today, and I hope readers will stop over at my blog to enter the Paranormal Fall Fling giveaway. There are weekly prizes and grand prizes at the end of the fling with gift cards, ebooks, and cool Sons of Navarus swag.

To Enter Visit:
http://gbisset.blogspot.com/p/paranormal-fall-fling.html

Buy: Blood Spirit (Sons of Navarus, Book #3)

Review: Blood Stone (Blood Knot, Book 2) by Tracy Cooper-Posey

bloodstoneReviewed by Sandra Scholes

Heartthrob Vamp 1: Roman:

He has a rich history going back to the sixteenth century Scottish highlands, but Kate knows him as Adrian, and he is already someone she thinks she knows very well, and seems to trust, though Adrian is also an effortless heartthrob type who doesn’t seem to have to try to get the woman of his dreams – he just can and it can infuriate some men…He
has a deep interest in her, and gives the impression he won’t allow Calum to get close to her…or will he?

Heartthrob Vamp 2: Calum Garrett

Calum is an industrial entrepreneur who is known worldwide for his efforts, but for Kate, he is the one man she can get close to who has an amazing animal magnetism that has allured her since she met him. He is a real man’s man, and loves to make her feel sensual and sexy, even though at first she doesn’t quite understand his intentions. If he wants her, he will have to go through Roman, and this is when the game of erotic cat and mouse begins.

Alluring Femme Fatale: Kate Lindenstream

Poor Kate doesn’t have a clue as to why Calum came to her studio; he is the one who mixes with top class celebrities and tycoons, but its love at first sight for her when she sets eyes on him. She knows full well who he is, and feels star struck in his presence. Kate isn’t what she seems though, and Nial and Calum soon start to question her intentions for helping them too.

Review: This is the second part of Cooper-Posey’s novel series, Blood Knot being the first received a lot of acclaim from reviewers and readers alike, and won many awards as a #1 bestseller, nominated Erotic Vampire Book of the Year, and received a CAPA Nomination for Best Paranormal Book of the Year by The Romance Studio. Cooper-Posey really heats up the story from the beginning of this novel with her trio of MMF sensuality.

Why did I like it? It’s racy, heated and deserves to be read at night before you go to bed – kick that hot b/f out of the room and have him make way for two hotter vamps and a woman who will find out what two men can really do for her!

You think you know menage romance – think again, Cooper-Posey’s novel is deliciously forbidden.

Rating: ★★★★★

Buy: Blood Stone, Blood Knot