Saturday, June 24, 2017

ARC REVIEW Run To Ground by Katie Ruggle

First book of the new Katie Ruggle series, Rocky Mountain K-9 Unit, Run to Ground is an intense read. It is a great story about second chances and moving on from grief. Katie Ruggle as with her last series has an overall story arc that isn't concluded in this book, so it is going to be important to read the series in order. I loved the book so much I don't even mind the semi-cliffhanger. Theo, Jules, Viggy, and the kids are all great characters and the mystery behind Jules and the kids is very intriguing.

Theo lost his K-9 partner to cancer and a year later his mentor commits suicide. Theo isn't the only one feeling the grief of losing someone close to him, Viggy is having a hard time adjusting to losing his person (Viggy is a Belgian Malinois). Theo and Viggy are also having a hard time adjusting to their new partnership, Viggy isn't doing his job and Theo feels lacking and doesn't feel like he deserves a new partner; they are both depressed and just muddling through. Jules and her four siblings (Sam, Tio, Ty, and Dee) are starting with a clean slate, on the run from Dee's mother. A horrible woman whose evil has yet to be completely revealed. Jules basically kidnapped her own siblings to get them away from the abuse they are suffering from and now with new identities they just need to keep a low profile but the good looking angry looking cop that comes into the diner every morning doesn't help Jules nerves.  

Theo knows the new waitress at the diner is hiding something, him and the other K-9 officers are pretty sure she's on the run from something. At first Theo is determined to find out what but he starts to spend time with her and her siblings that it becomes less and less important especially since there is a cop killer on the loose and Jules has been targeted by a creepy guy who they suspect blew up her barn. This family seems to be exactly what Theo and Viggy needed, little Dee helps Viggy over his grief and Jules helps Theo find and renew his purpose.

Overall, I loved this book so much I don't even mind that it ended with a sort of cliffhanger (more of a hook). The story lead to an unexpected twist and had some great action. The romance does fall second to the suspense but there is also quite a bit of character development and the first couple of chapters flip flop from past and present, but it is very well done.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

ARC REVIEW Abandoned by Rhonda Pollero

Book two of the Finding Justice series, Abandoned centers around the Kavanaugh brother Conner the Sheriff of the small town Purdue, Florida whose claim to fame is that an assassination of the President of the United States took place there. My only issue is that I read it too fast, 272 pages and I inhaled it, once it got the ball rolling it went by so quickly and when I got to the end I didn't want it to end just yet.

The main characters are likeable, Emma is one of the public defenders in Purdue, she just moved from New York and is way over qualified for the job but she has other reasons for moving to Purdue, Florida. Conner is the Sheriff, he's divorced and kind of got screwed over in the divorce all because he was a cop, his wife cheated on him and got full custody of their daughter because her new husband was rich and Conner's schedule was erratic. But things are looking up for him; his daughter, Sam, chose to spend a couple of months with him. Conner is immediately attracted to Emma, even if she was a bit prickly to him when they first met and a couple of times after that. Conner liked that about her and she knows her way around a courtroom and actually seems to care. Emma's reasons for being in Purdue have to do with her father who was the assassin in the President's assassination. Emma and her family accepted the fact that for some unknown reason her father went to Florida and killed a man, but some weeks ago Emma started to receive newspaper clippings all about the assassination that started to raise question about her father's innocence. Right off the bat weird things start happening and Conner is determined to get to the bottom of it.

Overall, it's a really good read, I loved where the story went and how it got there just not how quickly it did it. It gives more information on what happened to the Kavanaugh brother who is in jail and hopefully one of the up coming books is his HEA. It's not necessary to read the first book in the series, all the characters are new, but I really loved the first one and I would recommend reading them both.    

ARC REVIEW Toughest Cowboy in Texas by Carolyn Brown

The first of a new series by Carolyn Brown, Happy Texas is a spin off of her Lucky Penny Ranch series which is a spin off of another series, Lucky. It's a typical Carolyn Brown western romance, funny and loveable characters with a heartwarming story and a steamy romance.

Happy, Texas isn't the place where you go to let the past die it's quite the opposite for Lila Harris. When Lila lived in Happy she was known as the wild child, there isn't anything she wouldn't do. She was also secretly dating Brody Dawson; it had to be done in secret because it was very obvious that his mother and grandmother didn't approve of her. It never mattered to them they were young, dumb, and in love until Brody broke her heart. Lila left Happy heart broken and changed she became studious and worked hard to leave the wild child reputation far away from her but Lila goes back to help her mother sell the diner and as soon as she crosses the city limit sign she itching to do something crazy as long as it has nothing to do with Brody.

Brody never left Happy like he was supposed to, he was all set up to go to college but both his father and grandfather died and Brody was left to take care of the ranch and keep the family afloat. Life went on and Brody stayed the same just older and wiser and a lot more cautious. Twelve years down the line Brody is still at the ranch and Lila has come back into town for the summer or less if the diner gets sold sooner. They try to avoid it but all the unresolved things left between them, the sexual charge, and all the people telling them to stay away from each other just pulls them together. The romance is rekindled but Lila still plans on leaving and Brody wouldn't be happy any other place than his ranch can they survive another short lived romance or will they finally burn out the young love or let it grow into something so much more.

Overall, it's another fun and good read from Carolyn Brown. I can't wait for the other books. Brody has a sister with a brood of kids who lost the love of her life overseas and a younger brother and they need HEAs of their own.        

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

ARC REVIEW Twisted Royals series by Sidney Bristol

Twisted Royals

Books 2,3, and 4
By Sidney Bristol


Her Prince is book 2 in Sidney Bristol's Twisted Royal series. One thing that I have been loving reading these books is that Sidney isn't using the typical fairy tales, she has gone to the unexpected and in this one I've never heard before and that was refreshing. A Romani tale Kade calls "The Princess and the Forester's Son" what is really nice is that Kade tells the story to Aunt Liv at the beginning of the book. 

Kade is the white sheep in his family, he comes from a long line of Romani and they aren't shy about their criminal activities and Kade hated it. As soon as he was able Kade left and joined the Army became a combat medic and after leaving became a paramedic. Kade wanted nothing to do with his family, for the exception for his Mother, but everyone else was persona non grata. Shelby was the daughter of the a couple named the It couple of South Beach her mother the "Queen of South Beach", her father a popular art dealer and her mother an artist. But they died in a tragic "accident" when Shelby was a teenager. Shelby quickly learned her talent as an artist wasn't going to get her anywhere so she started her life of crime, first stealing then forging. After time she started working with the FBI to track down the man who she believes is responsible for her parents death. 

Shelby and Rusty, her FBI handler, they had organized an undercover operation to finally nail the guy who Shelby believes murdered her parents, those plans include Kade's brothers and ultimately Kade himself. Shelby lures him in first so he's on their side but not before almost sleeping with him and falling for him hard. Kade couldn't keep Shelby off his mind and a dinner date sounded innocent enough but what really happens is nothing what he expected. Kade didn't want to believe Shelby when she said his brothers were in trouble and when they showed up in his apartment he really had no choice but to play along. Falling in love wasn't in the plans but it happened nonetheless.

Overall, it was an exciting and so, so naughty read. You can't help but love Kade and Shelby. 





   

   Bad Boy Prince, book three in the Twisted Royal series. Jaxon and Freya kind of get their start in Her Prince. It is three weeks after the events of the previous book and Jaxon hasn't given up looking for Freya who got caught in the wrong place at the wrong time and ended being kidnapped by a very bad dude. This one isn't my favorite it not bad it just didn't dig the story as much.

This is a twisted retelling of Swan Lake where Freya, the daughter of a Senator, is held captive by Yuri Gabor, a mad man who fulfills the sick and twisted fantasies of the rich and powerful. Jaxon is a guy who hung out with the wrong crowd when he was younger and got a bad reputation, it didn't help any that he was a really good MMA fighter. Jaxon is on the straight and narrow now he was back at school and working as a bouncer/bartender. He blames himself for Freya getting kidnapped and since it looks like noone else is doing anything about it he recruits Zach to help. Zach is able to track down Freya and Gabor and Jax is able to infiltrate the place all on his own quickly earning the trust of Gabor and his head of security.  Jax is soon in charge overnight security on Freya's room and since they are the only ones left in the building by that time they are able to see each other. Jax with a little help from his friends quickly puts into place a way for Freya to escape. But Freya won't leave because Gabor told her he has her twin sister under his thumb and will kill her unless Freya does what he tells her to, which is to marry a psychopath. Things however are more complicated than they first appear. 

Overall, it was a good romance and I enjoyed that it wasn't insta-love (even though I love insta-love it's a nice change) but the pace just off in places, it started off real quick than seemed to progress slowly after that it just seemed to go on and on when it really didn't. 




OUT TODAY!!!!!


Noble Price is book four in the Twisted Royals series, which is a nicely twisted version of Cinderella. It's not your typical Cinderella story. Owen! Owen, Owen finally Owen. Throughout the first three books Owen has been a constant, always the good guy and is always there to help his friend even when it's slightly shady but always for an overall good reason. Unfortunately with the events of the last book it has come to light that Gabor had plenty of police on his pay and for his actions Owen has been placed on suspension pending firing to keep him from talking.  

Quinn and Kierra are sisters whose lives fell apart after the death of their mother; their father started working more and more overseas for the DoD and Quinn gave up her dream of being an inventor like her mother so she could run the office of her mother's business which is now following the leadership of her mother's best friend and her two spoiled proteges. Quinn is running herself ragged and it doesn't help matters that Kierra has been seeing things, a monster, outside her window and when she does she calls Owen for help and Owen always shows up to check. One night Kierra calls and tells Owen the monster is in the house. Owen drops everything and runs to the house to rush in on someone threatening Quinn. 

Owen saves the day and much to Quinn chagrin Owen sticks around and starts doing things that have fallen to the wayside to everything else going on in Quinn's life. Quinn doesn't want to rely too much on Owen because every time she has relied on someone else in the past they bailed and left more work for her in the long run. Owen isn't leaving and he plans on sticking around even after they find out who is behind the break in he just has to convince Quinn he is in it for the long haul. The break in was just the start of it and when Quinn disappears only to be found unconscious in a dumpster do they realize Quinn isn't the only target. 

Overall, such a damn good book! Predictable about the whodunnit but overall a very good story and mmmmm Owen. Sidney has great active setting and fantastic details about everything.    

ARC REVIEW DC Universe Rebirth Teen Titans vol 1: Damian Knows Best



Teen Titans vol. 1: Damian Knows Best
DC Universe Rebirth
Issues #1-5 and Rebirth

Story by Benjamin Percy
Art by: Khoi Pham, Jonboy Meyers, Diogenes Neves

Story: With the death (wink wink) of Tim Drake the Teen Titans pretty much disbanded, they each went their separate ways. One by one Starfire, Raven, Beast Boy, and the new Kid Flash are all taken but it’s not by some nefarious mastermind…ok well they are but Damian ultimately had a good purpose for it. Damian Wayne wants the Teen Titans to get back together again with him in charge. As Robin, Damian is ready to follow in the footsteps of his predecessors he’s thirteen now and ready to prove to his father that he can do this. Damian’s Grandfather, Ra’s al Ghul, has plans of his own and unless Robin can convince the other Titans to work together again with him they are doomed.

Art: This probably has some of my favorite art in it, Jonboy Meyers working both story and illustrations did a fantastic job at both. Khoi Pham, Diogenes Neves and all the colorist… everyone, I loved it. The art was clear, detailed, the coloring was bold. I had to go back and just look at the art without reading the story.

Characters: Damian Wayne/ Robin, Beast Boy, Starfire, Raven, Kid Flash, Ra’s al Ghul, League of Assassins, The Demon’s Fist, Alfred and Batman.


Review: Damian Wayne, that’s the little shit I know and love. Damian tracks down, stalks, and masterminds the kidnapping of the new Kid Flash, Starfire, Raven, and Beast Boy all to prove they need him. Didn’t even occur to him that they might find it offensive and not too keen on working with someone who basically insulted each and every one of them and then asked for a favor. You really see the dual sided nature that Damian is struggling with, being trained by Ra’s but trying to live up the standards of Batman and prove that he is up to the task that is being the leader of the Teen Titans. As they fight the Demon Fist, the villainous teen group that Ra’s created for the League of Assassins, the Titans learn that Damian is more like his father then they all thought. And seriously Starfire is STILL a teenager?  







     

ARC REVIEW DC Universe Rebirth Nightwing vol 2: Back to Bludhaven



Nightwing vol. 2: Return to  Blüdhaven
DC Universe Rebirth
Issues # 9-15

Story by: Tom Seeley
Art by: Marcus To, Marcio Takara, Minkyu Jung, Chris Sotomayor, Marcelo Maiolo



Story: Nightwing’s future is undetermined at the starting point of this comic he’s been suffering from some pretty bad dreams, Superman has an idea on what might be happening and he helps Nightwing and gives him the idea that maybe moving to  Blüdhaven, like the Nightwing he knew, would be the best course of action for him. Dick takes the advice and moves to  Blüdhaven to start over with a clean slate and to help sort out everything that has happened. Once there it becomes obvious that the city needs him just as much as he needed a new place to call home. A group of reformed villains have taken refuge in  Blüdhaven, they just want a chance to start over. But the crime is rising and someone is framing these reformed villains for murders they didn’t commit. Nightwing is the only one that believes them and goes against the police and a crime boss to prove his new friend’s innocence.



Art: Marcus To did a great job with the art, the backgrounds and details are wonderful. The coloring had a nice contrast between the neon colors and the dark and it seemed to fit in with the setting. Sometimes though Grayson looked like he was drawn you young, there wasn’t enough detail drawn on his face and he ended up looking like a young teenager instead of the adult he his. Other than that it was visually compelling the art did a wonderful job of telling the story. I loved Ivan Reis, Oclair Albert and Sula Moon’s variant covers.




Characters: Nightwing/Dick Grayson, Superman, Shawn Tsang/Defacer, Gorilla Grimm, Juan-Andres Santos Suarez/ Thrill Devil, Brendon Li/ Giz, Pamela Sweigeld/ Mouse, Randy/ Stallion, The Orca, Detective Svoboda and special appearances by Starfire, Kid Flash, Batgirl, Red Hood, Bruce and Alfred




Review: What I enjoyed most about this was Grayson learning that the world consisted of just more that black and white, the varying shades of gray in between are what most people live in and coming to  Blüdhaven and becoming friends with the Run-offs along with coming to terms with what happened at the start of Rebirth he has learned so much, and had quite a bit of character development. Of course I’m a sucker for romance and I like how Shawn and Grayson started their relationship. Damn you cliffhanger!   

Thursday, June 15, 2017

ARC REVIEW Beyond Reason by Kat Martin

Beyond Reason is the start of a new series from Kat Martin, Texas Trilogy. It was a nice step away from the Brody's series. It was a good read very typical Kat Martin, which is a good thing, good romance, good plot, and well paced. My only complaint is that Lincoln was too much of the cliched billionaire playboy. It was a nice change to have a book take place in Texas and not be about cowboys, thank you very much, we are not all cowboys, oil tycoons, or mexican labourers. The trucking industry is big and it's nice to see it getting some attention for a change (that I know of).

Carly Drake has so much to make up for, she knows just how much her Grandfather did for her she feels guilty for not being here for him sooner. Now that he's dead she's going to make Drake Trucking once again into one of the best trucking companies in Texas, but the cards are stacked against her and if it isn't one thing it's another and here she is five weeks after her grandfather's death her best driver was shot down and hijacked and the police aren't very hard to find out why. Lincoln Cain owes so much to Joe Drake, after he got out of prison Joe was the only one who gave him a chance and it was that one opportunity that lead Lincoln on the path to being as successful and rich as he is now. Lincoln made a deathbed promise to Joe that he would take care of Carly after Joe's death. Lincoln heard so much about Carly and expected her to be polished and spoiled, his plan was to buy the company from her for enough money to set her up for life and she wouldn't have to worry about money any more. What he got was an insanely beautiful and determined woman who said no. Lincoln isn't the only one who she said no to, Carly also said no to a local drug lord and now she's in over her head, top it off with company money disappearing and the death of her best driver. Lincoln is bound to help her whether she wants it or not but once she realizes who the drug lord is she's willing to accept help to take him down.

Overall, this was a good read it has some good side stories going on, the character development was nice with the background information on Lincoln. The romance aspect was enjoyable, like all playboys once he has his girl, Carly, she's the only one that matters. and I'm looking forward to Beau's, who is Lincoln's business partner and childhood friend, story.