20 February 2012

ARC Review: Laura Wright - Eternal Captive

Book #3 in the Mark of the Vampire series
Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Signet (February 7, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0451235878
ISBN-13: 978-0451235879
Received a copy from the author for review

Cover Summary:
Since feeding her his blood, Lucian Roman has struggled with his obsession with Bronwyn Kettler-fighting an uncontrollable desire to kill her, if he has to, and the vampire she has sworn to wed. But when a dangerous enemy threatens Bronwyn, only Lucian can save her life. Even if it means sacrificing his own...

Review:

Goodread book updates:
01/25
page 1 -  0.0% "Lucian is finally mine to devour, mwuuahahahaha!!"
01/29
page 20 - 7.0% "It's already so good! The Breeding Male prologue, the dark and twisted turns of Lucian's emotions - the beginning rocks!"
01/29
page 24 - 8.0% "Hello Synjon! *heart flutters at description*"
01/29
page 66 - 22.0% "I'm loving the testosterone clash between Synjon & Lucian something fierce!"
02/11
page 358 - 100.0% "what an emotional rollercoaster ride!!"

From the bat Eternal Captive put me through a maelstrom of emotions. Luca touched me in ways I didn’t think he would and his romance with Bronwyn just shook me to my core – in all the good ways! In the previous stories of Mark of the Vampire series there were encounters between Luca and Bronwyn that reverberated a magnetic sensual force. I couldn’t wait to see where they were headed because there was no doubt in my mind they were meant for each other. What Laura Wright delivered exceeded all my expectations.

As I returned to the world now familiar to me I found Bronwyn concocting a plan to avoid being presented to the Breeding Male. This plan brought a new character to the cast named; Synjon Wise and he instantly flipped my intrigue switch. He is described as a combo between a Special Forces officer from his native Britain and a Navy Seal from the US; hello Synjon!! The danger and mystery clinging to this character made me want to unravel all there is to know about him! While he played an important role in Eternal Captive the story was all about Bronwyn and Luca.

Luca, with his flippant attitude, is a vampire who entered Eternal Hunger for the first time and made me think; MINE! He doesn’t care what everybody thinks and goes his own way but underneath it all hides a complex nature. Now in Eternal Captive I got inside his heart and mind and he blew me away. He became the fantastic mix of attitude, vulnerability, emotions and prowess.

Bronwyn was largely responsible for the change in Luca. She is a scientist, definitely a smart cookie who is fierce, bold and caring. She takes matters in to her own hands and it might get her in to trouble she is just not one who will sit by the sidelines to see her life get orchestrated. I loved to see Bronwyn’s braveness coupled with a certain fear, to see her grow and change throughout the story. What I loved most was how she challenged Luca and gradually fell in love with him.

The powerful pairing of these two characters created an exquisite love/hate affair that was simply titillating to read. Due to personal reasons Bronwyn wants to elude the Breeding Male at all costs and Luca is a son of the Breeding Male – halfway becoming one. This romantic conflict, combined with the burning attraction and the overall plot arc just knocked me off my feet. It was a battle of will power, of the heart and soul which captivated me with the well of emotions pouring from Bronwyn and Luca. The interactions was a clash of sharp minds, fierceness and sexual undertones and I gobbled it all up.

Not to mention the fact that the intricate rules, customs and society structures bring depth to this vampire race. It brings conflict and injustice, dangers, mystery and adventures; all elements that elevated the romance to greater heights. It infused this story with bloodcurdling scenes that got me crying. It delivered such intense bittersweet moments I could actually feel my heart ache for the characters involved. Laura Wright superbly deepened the characterization of the familiar cast of characters. She made the villain so evil I wanted to strangle him myself and added some new characters whom intrigued me. These new characters; Erion, Lycos, Phane and Helos mark a new plotline within the story arc and one I’m enthusiastic about.

I want to jubilate more about the romance, which consumed me from beginning till end. About the plot that took it up a notch and kept me riveted to the pages. If I could share the erotic heat I felt between Luca and Bronwyn I could create a pleasant bonfire. And if I could talk more about the high-stake dangers of all the trials and tribulations I would, but I want you to find it out all on your own.

Luca played all my emotional chords like no tomorrow. He and Bronwyn gave me a romance I will never forget, set in a rich and detailed world with a memorable supporting cast of characters. Laura Wright, you rocked my world with this one!!

5 stars

Quote

Bronwyn gazed up into the face of her dear friend. Movie-star handsome, with an athlete’s body and the loyalty of a gracious god, Synjon Wise had grown from an awkward balas into a six-foot-four, broad-shouldered paven of every veana’s fantasy.

Lucian’s hand came up and covered hers, as his eyes implored her with their ferocity. “I feel the animal within me emerging, Princess. It’s raw and uncontained, but it wants to please you. If we wait…”His chin dropped, his voice too. “I cannot hurt you, do you understand?”

She hadn’t wanted it this way – not out of necessity. She’d wanted him to want her, God – to really care for her. She’d wanted him to take her, make her feel what he felt; his rage, his lust, his sadness – his endless sadness.

In his one hundred and twenty-five years, Lucian had felt deep hunger. He’d felt uncontrolled lust. He’d felt impending insanity. He’d felt sorrow and hopelessness come over him in thick waves of fog. But never in his life had he felt them all at once. This wasn’t morpho – he was never going through morpho. This was the pain and agony of changing into the Breeding Male.

Spoiler quote:
Luca: “I am cruel. I am savage. I’m the worst – no good for any female, and yet I am the paven who wants to hear the mother of his balas care about his sorry ass.”


Laura Wright on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Buy @ BookDepo

12 February 2012

Sunday's Brunch: Movies & partying hard

As you’ll read this week’s Sunday’s Brunch blogpost I’ll be over at Marissa partying hard with diva as she turned a handful of years. Every year I hope I’m bringing along presents she’ll like. Now that I’m working in kiddie daycare again I’m more in tune with what kids love but there have been years I was hopelessly out of the loop. Did you all know Pokemon is still hot as evah? I went to the first movie with kids from my former job in another kiddie daycare.

Anyhoo…as I had my dinner one night last week I saw the trailer of War Horse. Can I say; Oh yeah!! Me wants to see?? Steven Spielberg appeals to my need for drama with many a movie from his hand and I’m a sucker for animals playing a big or leading role in a movie. Let me tell you about some of the movies I *heart* so much. One of the first was Black Stallion – what kid after that didn’t want a black Arabian to be best buddies with an ride forever? Beethoven – I laughed so much with the first movie. The tumdumdumdum always makes me think of that movie and smile…plus, dog owners might recognize some or a lot of their own dog behavior in it ;) The Lion King – okay, it’s an animated movie but hot damn…I laugh, I cry, I was wow-ed by the animation *enough said* More recent movies were Hachiko – dear lawd, I thought it was gonna be Disney cute story and instead I was sobbing my heart out throughout two-thirds of the movies. The loyalty of Hachiko *reaches for a tissue* The one I laughed with was Marley & Me. So much doggie naughtiness I recognized. I once had a litter of 9 shitsoe pups and when the late hubby and I came back from grocery shopping it was white on my floor. They got the door open to my toilet and decided it was fun to shred all eight rolls of toilet paper. While cleaning I was not amused but later on it became quite a hallmark story to tell when I think back on my breeding years! So now it’s the movie War Horse that captured my attention and I’ll get back to you when I’ve watched it.


With all this talk of job, parties and movies you might wonder if I’m still reading. Oh yes, I still am! Just not reading fast enough *oye* This weak however I’ve read a five star read. It was Laura Wright’s – Eternal Captive and Luca, oh that vampire worked his magic on me from the first moment we met. My review will be up next week. As will be my review of Lara Adrian’s Kiss of Midnight. My interest leans towards PNR these days but I decided to read in a different genre right now before heading in to a PNR story again. After all the raving from Janna about the Cut And Run series by Abiligail Roux and Madeleine Urban I decided that the first in this series is the one to read.

As I look at my shelves there are more books screaming for attention (next to the ones I accepted for review). What did you guys think of Kresley Cole’s LOTHAIRE – Shannon McKenna’s ULTIMATE WEAPON & FADE TO MIDNIGHT. I even have Jennifer Donnelly’s – A WILD ROSE flirting with me, that’s a 600 pages or so book 0.o My first vacay is in June – I must have a reading vacay before that, I must!!

Okay…as I’m writing this post now (Saturday, 2-11-2012 at 19:48 PM) I need to cut it a bit short cause I have a facial scheduled. After all that winter cold of last week my skin can absorb some much needed minerals!

Happy Valentine everyone - I think I'll date a fictional boyfriend *grin*

09 February 2012

My guest review of; Joey W Hill's - Bound By The Vampire Queen


I'm over at Caught in a Fab Romance with my guest review of Joey W Hill's Bound By The Vampire Queen.

My two Fab Quotes for this story are:

Jacob:

“My lady,” he said again, and this time instead of an honorific, he was saying it as it was meant. My lady. His love, his heart. His temptress, his tormentor.

Jacob:

Meeting her gaze, a rueful smile on his lips, he hooked the hose, skinned them down his legs, took them off with his boots and put it all aside, bracing his feet to stand before her completely bare of everything except the cross brand, the lashes on his back, and that third servant mark. He knew it always did something to her, seeing him stripped of everything but those three things. Her servant. Her slave. Her lover, bound to her for eternity.

Jacob is one of those intense men I can't help but utterly fall for. Even in his third romance story with his queen, Lyssa, he has the ability to woe me ;)

05 February 2012

Sunday Brunch: Surviving cold, snow & the energizer bunny

This week a cold front has decided to move over the Netherlands and bring -10 to -15 degrees Celsius at night. If you need to cycle to work at 6.45 AM I can tell you that is effing cold!!! At kiddie daycare the talk of each day was; when can we skate on the ponds and when does the snow finally get here. Well, Friday snow came and in 5 minutes flat I was outside with the kids. Of course the boys wanted a snowball fight while the girls wanted to make a snowman. As the fun in the snow commenced there were also the inevitable tears of a lost snowball impacting a face, icy fingers and rosy cheeks. We got warm again over some hot cocoa inside and at closing I had to cycle back home. Did they clear the bicycle paths? Hell no! I slithered my way home where on a few occasions I almost found out my street value. I felt like I was a survival of the fittest champion the moment I got home unharmed. But the next morning it was Saturday, I woke up to a spectacular winter morning and I soaked in the peaceful moment. Cause I knew, with the three ponds behind my apartment, that in an hour or so dads and grandpa’s would be outside with the young un’s teaching them how to skate.




I, on the other hand volunteered to have my parents shitsoe puppy for the day. I was counting the weeks until Noa aka The Energizer Bunny was going to spend a day and night with us. What was I thinking??!! My dogs have reached senior status a few years back and all they do is sleep. I need to go back in my memory, like 13 years, to remember them being pups. Noa is this larger than life doggie personality who thinks the whole world is her playground and everyone in it is there to serve her. So she immediately demanded Queen Furry and Lady Bug to play with her. Well, Queen Furry put that idea out of her head pretty quickly. But did Noa listen, aaahhh the exuberance of the young un’s. My ears are still ringing of the barking conversations between Energizer Bunny, Lady Bug and Queen Furry. Noa also came with an overnight bag containing a plethora of toys…all squeakers *headdesk* There was a doggy coat too so Noa remained warm outside and she has a leash with sparklies…I kid you not!! I call it how I see it; spoiled doggy!!!

Here are a few pics I took along the day:

                                                                   Noa in the snow.

                                            Noa giving me the; 'Why should I obey, I ain't 
                                            no dog!' look. She wasn't listening. *chants* 
                                            Be calm and assertive - yeah right.

                                          Noa keeping my company in the kitchen as she falls 
                                          asleep. Apparantly my cooking is nothing as exciting 
                                          as an epi of  Master Chef Australia.

                                          Noa waking up possessed by the food monster 
                                          growling; Me hungry. Me food. 

                                              A while later the possessed Noa found a 
                                              way to pry open the door to the bag of
                                              doggy food.

                                          After an eventful day she finally keels over and
                                          falls asleep next to my chair as I do some last 
                                          minute things on the computer. 
                                          Peace and quiet once more in my household ;)

In a few hours Noa will be picked up and I have the rest of the day to read! Lucian from Eternal Captive is mine today!! I’ve already read the first hundred pages and it is already so good. The overall major and minor plotlines intrigue the daylights outta me but Lucian and Bronwyn…their attraction is a live wire of love and hate. *hearts*

Picture me on the couch with a blanket over my legs and sipping on some hot coca while reading Eternal Captive. I’m not going to stop until I read; The End!

Happy Sunday everyone ;)

01 February 2012

Review: L.A. Witt - Out of Focus


Format: ebook
Genre: Kink/BDSM, Red Hots!!!, Ménage & More, Gay Contemporary
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
Publication Date: 08-02-2011
Length: Plus Novel
ISBN: 978-1-60928-507-4
Read from my personal library

Cover Summary:
He’ll bend for them. But they may break over him.
For twelve years, Dom lovers Ryan “Angel” Morgan and Dante James have run a successful photography business, and satisfied their need for a submissive with the occasional sizzling three-way. On a wedding job, they both zero in on the bride’s beautiful brother, but as professionals, they keep their attraction on the down-low—for now.

Jordan Steele has no trouble establishing mastery over his stallions. When he hires Angel and Dante to shoot promotional photos for his stable, though, there’s something about them that calls to his inner submissive. After a little flirtation and a photo session that gets almost too hot to handle, Angel and Dante are happy to show him the ropes. And the whip.

Once they break the ice, their sexual chemistry burns hotter than a macro flash. Everyone gets what they need…until emotions come into play. Their power could develop into something permanent, throw everything off balance—leaving one of them the odd man out.

Product Warnings - Contains lots of sarcasm, a double helping of steamy erotic photography, and two dominants having their way with one very enthusiastic submissive.


Review:

Now that I’ve finished Out Of Focus I can tell you the emotional punch is in the tail of the story. For the first hundred and fifty pages I met and got to know three energetic and personable men. Jordan Steele, Dante James and Ryan “Angel” Morgan have a body language that emanated sexuality. The concept of two Doms and a submissive piqued my curiosity. How would this work in the bedroom and ultimately, in a relationship? The beginning confused me however as the author alternated between the three characters point of view in each new chapter. This subsided gradually as I read along but never completely vanished either. It could’ve been so easily solved by just marking each chapter with their name. A simple solution but it would’ve enhanced the pleasure of reading this story!

When Jordan, Dante and Angel meet the attraction is palpable. Jordan wants a photo shoot of his horses but finds out Dante and Angel also do more provocative shoots which titillates him to no end. This interest culminates in to a photo shoot that set my blood ablaze and made me squirm in my seat. While nothing overly sexual happens the erotic tension is superbly translated by the author. L.A. Witt presented me with three fascinating men to get to know, an appealing storyline and she could make me absorb the sexy-as-hell magnetism directly from the pages. I was so ready for more.

But all I got more of was the sexual connection between the three men and plenty of banter. At over a hundred pages I started to wonder where the conflicts were – and I got more sex play. Where were the challenges and character development and all I got were more sexy scenes. I also wondered, while there is a good dose of eroticism there are no intricate Dominant/submissive scenes. Angel and Dante ask permission for every little thing and there is very little exploring of Jordan’s boundaries as a submissive. There could’ve been such emotional depth in a good D/s scene but all I got was more wicked banter.

Now I have no objections to wicked, wild and wanton with fast-paced dialogues so I settled for the fact the set-up of this ménage had a casual angle. At some point though, since this was an erotic romance, I wondered when the romantic development would occur. Well, I found my answer in the last quarter of the story when love was coming in to play. In one moment the emotion caught fire and with it came the believable doubts, fears and a whole set of feelings that made their arrangement that much more complicated. I liked it. It was real! The dilemma presented was an edgy one and something that truly grabbed me. In this portion of the book the point of view from each man is the clearest. L.A. Witt gave wonderful insight in Jordan, Angel and Dante’s emotions, reasoning, the doubts and also the love they felt.

All in all the balance of story vs romance development was off for me and the D/s scenes remained on the surface. However, the characters were amazing, the interaction dynamic and the sensuality so good my body temperature rose while reading it. The latter made Out Of Focus a story I could enjoy!

3.5 stars

L.A. Witt on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Buy @ Samhain