Friday, February 24, 2012

[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Missing Daughter, Shattered Family


Liz Strange was born and raised in Canada where she still lives with her family and a menagerie of pets.  If she’s not working, writing or spending time with her family, Liz enjoys reading, watching horror flicks, eating spicy food, and/or hitting the gym. 
A self-professed Sci-Fi Nerd, Liz loves anything to do with mythology, history, anthropology, ancient Greece and Easter Island, in addition to her expected fascination with Star Trek, the X-Files, and Torchwood.
Liz loves to read, has been an avid reader since she was little, and even then was attracted to the dark side.  She loves mysteries, crime novels, and pretty much all things paranormal/supernatural.  Her undying love for vampires was born when she first obtained a copy of Stephen King’s “Salem’s Lot”, and the rest, as they say, is history.

 Missing Daughter, Shattered Family – David Lloyd Investigations Book #1
Author:  Liz Strange

When a brutal homophobic attack ended David Lloyd's career as a police officer, his life was changed forever. Five years later David is running his own private detective agency, where a missing person's case comes to his attention. Digging into the circumstances of her disappearance forces David to realize he has not dealt with what happened to him, and that he can no loner deal with his long-time partner's fear of being honest about their relationship.

Solving the case might not only bring peace to a shattered family, but could finally put David's own demons to rest

Our Review [by Michelle L. Olson – LITERAL ADDICTION’s Pack Alpha]:
I’m a big fan of Liz’s work and was excited to read this as it’s not her ‘usual’, or what I’ve come to equate with her usual anyway.
I was pleasantly surprised and am definitely looking forward to the next installment of this series – the lady can write a killer mystery!  J
 Missing Daughter, Shattered Family is not a super fast paced, majorly action packed read, but it’s steady and gripping, & holds your interest the entire way through.  It’s perfectly layered and fabulously enjoyable.
You build an affinity for the characters from the get-go, and their real-life struggles lead to the story and pull you in even more.
The plot is deep and intriguing and keeps you guessing up until the very last where the true ‘bad guys’ are thoroughly revealed.
While this is definitely a mystery, there is some sweet and true to life romance between the hero and his partner.  It is a m/m romance, but that should not dissuade anyone from reading it.  Even if you think you wouldn’t enjoy a m/m romance, as I said, the book is all about the mystery and the romance that is introduced just leads to the believability of the lead characters and their role in the solving of said mystery.
LITERAL ADDICTION gives Missing Daughter, Shattered Family 4 Skulls and would recommend it to all Mystery aficionados.  I’m really looking forward to book #2 of the series and can’t wait to see what’s in store for David & Jamie and the new friends they make along the way.  If I were to sum up this book, it’s a wonderfully written mystery with a ton of heart.
Missing Daughter, Shattered Family:


Saturday, February 11, 2012

[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of The Purrfect Stranger

Bianca D’Arc is way more than just an author!  She is a former chemist with more letters behind her name than we could ever hope to have, a martial arts enthusiast, and an artist.  We’re not talking about being an artist just with her pen and computer, though that can’t be disputed!  We actually meant with a paint brush and a guitar, since those are 2 of her hobbies when she’s not creating fantastical worlds for us to get lost in.  Outside of that, she’s an avid bargain hunter and LOVES to shop!    

Bianca’s background in science has come in handy in her writing, as she enjoys mixing her real-world knowledge of science with her vast imaginary world library.  She writes in many genres and mixed genres, but concentrates most of her work in the paranormal, sci-fi, fantasy and futuristic realms with some contemporary and urban fantasy thrown in for the heck of it.  As fans, we can honestly say that we wouldn’t want it any other way!


 The Purrfect Stranger, Book #3 of the Tales of the Were series
Author:  Bianca D’Arc

Sparks fly when a failed witch makes a werecougar purr.

Valerie is a failed witch, doomed to always disappoint her very proud, magical family, until a blind date on Valentine’s Day brings her face to face with her real destiny. Keith Redstone is a werecougar on the prowl who’s a little different from the rest of his Clan. He’s clawed his way to the position of Alpha by earning their respect, but most don’t know his deepest, darkest secret. He can see magic.

When the two meet, sparks fly…very real sparks of magical energy that singe their senses and seal their fate. But how can they reconcile two very different backgrounds and traditions? Will Keith recognize their swirling magic as belonging together? And will Valerie understand what it means when she makes her very own big cat purr?

Our Review [by Michelle L. Olson – LITERAL ADDICTION’s Pack Alpha]:
I’m a huge fan of Bianca D’Arc’s work.  I’ve followed every series that she has written and am always excited when I find out that there will be a new release.  Tales of the Were was the 3rd series of Bianca’s that I devoured, so when I heard about the release of The Purrfect Stranger I was very happy.
Those of you that follow my reviews or know me from LITERAL ADDICTION know that I’m kind of a hard nut to crack.  I can count the number of non-paranormal romances I’ve read on one hand, and I’m not a gushy romantic – in fact, too much of that will put me off of a book instantly.  In the staggering number of books that I’ve read, I think there have only been 2 that really got to me and literally made me do an “Awwwww” with a smile and a little squeal, and this book was one of the 2. J
The characters were fabulous – a witch from the most powerful Mage clan with no magic of her own, therefore a reject among her kind, and a area Alpha from the Cougar clan with magic that he’s had to deny because it was deemed unnatural by his peers, meeting on a true Blind Date (not even those that set them up knew what they were throwing together).
While the relationship in this book happened incredibly fast, for some reason it didn’t turn me off like it sometimes does.  Normally I have to remind myself that it’s a romance novel and things don’t follow normal timelines, but in this book it just seemed right and I didn’t question the instantaneous relationship at all.  In fact, given the fact that this was only a Novella, it happened even faster than usual, and yet I still was right there with them and cheering them on the entire way.  Maybe it was because fate had thrown them together and both of them, in their own way knew that, even before they had discussed it, and yet there was so much for them to still learn about each other and themselves… together!??  Whatever it was it worked for me and I loved every single page. 
The only complaint I have about this book was that there just wasn’t enough of it!  I’m glad that Bianca warned me about it not being a full length novel before I settled down with it because I might have been disappointed not having more.  As it stood, I went in knowing that it was a Short and just fell into the story. 
LITERAL ADDICTION gives The Purrfect Stranger 5 Skulls and would recommend it to everyone.  The entire Tales of the Were series (and the rest of Bianca’s Backlist) is fabulous, but this Novella is really something special, and this Short can definitely be read as a standalone.  Of course that’s only my personal opinion, and maybe it’s because it has EVERYTHING that I personally love in my PNR – magic, big cat shifters, adversity - but even if you don’t love it as much as I did, I still think you’ll enjoy it.  It’s a wonderful, quick, light-hearted, feel good read.
The Purrfect Stranger:

Friday, February 10, 2012

[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Dire Needs


Stephanie Tyler is a bestselling writer of over 20 amazing titles.  We say “writer” and not author because that is what she calls herself.  Some may think that’s strange, but we get it.  It’s the part she loves, it’s what she does, and therefore makes her what she is.  She says she was born a writer, that she always knew it’s what she wanted to do, and took every step necessary to make it happen.  She double majored in English Lit and Creative Writing, went back to get her Masters in English Lit and Secondary English Education, and even went so far as to get ½ of her PhD.  She worked as a manager in a book store while going to school, and ended up teaching both at the middle school and college level afterward until family took precedence.  Once that happened, she was able to really start writing, no longer having to split her creative focus between her students and herself, and she hasn’t stopped since. 
It took Stephanie four years and 10 manuscripts before she got her first sales call, but after that, things happened fast and furiously.  Within the span of a year, she was offered contracts for 11 books and just three years later hit the New York Times Best Seller list with “Hold on Tight”.

 Dire Needs, Book #1 of the Eternal Wolf Clan series
Author:  Stephanie Tyler

The full moon is their mistress. They are predators of pleasure and pain. Feared by humans, envied by werewolves, the Dire Wolves are immortal shifters, obeying no laws but their own bestial natures. Once they were many, but now only six remain, a dangerous wolfpack forever on the hunt…

Rifter leads the pack, embracing the lifestyle and ethics of an outlaw biker even as he battles an ancient enemy who has become a new, powerful force. But with his Brother Wolf raging inside him, howling to be unleashed, he needs to satisfy his hungers. And when he meets a drop-dead gorgeous blonde drinking alone in a bar that caters to both human and inhuman, Rifter’s primal instinct is to claim her.

Gwen has her own desires, long unfulfilled. She hopes a passionate night with the leather-clad, Harley-riding biker will ease her suffering. The seizures that have wracked her body her entire life are incurable—and they’re killing her.

But none of that will matter if Rifter can’t stop the growing threat to them all–trappers who are determined to enslave humankind and use the Dire wolves as part of their nefarious plan
Our Review [by Michelle L. Olson – LITERAL ADDICTION’s Pack Alpha]:
I was excited for this book from the minute LITERAL ADDICTION hosted Stephanie to promote the last Sydney Croft ACRO novel and she announced that she was working on bringing it to life. 
When I finally received my Advance Reading Copy from Stephanie I set all other books aside and settled in, reminding myself that I needed to keep an open mind and judge based on what I was reading and feeling, and not what I had hyped it up to be.  That wasn’t difficult, seeing as Stephanie literally grabs hold of the reader 5 pages in and doesn’t let go. 
The Eternal Wolf Clan is comprised of 6 sexy alpha males who are the last of their kind and who have been thrown into the battle of good vs. evil to save themselves, their distant cousins the Werewolves, and humankind from a group of overzealous humans known as the weretrappers.  The trappers basically have a grudge against any ‘others’, though their grudge has evolved into a nefarious plot to use the ‘others’ before exterminating them.  To make matters worse, they have conned a coven of powerful witches into helping them, and that is just making things harder for the Dires. 
This is Rifter and Gwen’s story, but it’s also a beautiful set up for the rest of the series and I can pretty much guarantee that readers will be picking their favorite Dire immediately upon meeting him in this first installment.  Without breaking the flow, Stephanie gives great descriptions of each of the Dires and some of their backstory, making it almost impossible for the reader not to choose their own personal hunky wolf to champion. 
Rifter is a fabulous male lead – the leader of the Dires with the weight of the world on his shoulders and a melancholy that he can’t shake just for the simple fact that he’s felt so alone for so long.
Gwen is a great female lead.  She’s smart, sassy, strong, and while looking for her prince charming, doesn’t completely turn herself off when she finds him. 
The story was beautifully told; extraordinarily crafted, not only as a standalone book but as a set up for the rest of the series.  The world that Stephanie has built for the Eternal Wolf Clan is unique and fresh, not something easily done in today’s market of rampant shifter stories.  The added twists of magic and the Dires’ individual gifts add another layer of intrigue to the mix and there were just enough secrets left untold to keep the reader wanting more. 
I can’t believe that I’ve finished book one of this long awaited treasure already.  I want book 2 so badly now, it’s not going to be pretty until the next release.  I guess I’ll just have to satisfy myself with spreading the word about Dire Needs and the Eternal Wolf Clan series so that everyone can read it, love it, and be in misery along with me while we wait for book 2. ;-)
LITERAL ADDICTION gives Dire Needs 5 Skulls and would recommend it to everyone.  It’s a great read for Urban Fantasy buffs, Paranormal Romance lovers, fans of the strong sexy alpha male, lovers of magic and mayhem…  it’s a well rounded book for just about everyone. 
Kudos to Stephanie for giving us an amazing new shifter world to fall in love with.

Dire Needs:


Friday, February 3, 2012

[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Child of War: A God is Born

Lisa Beth Darling has been married for the last 25 years to her wonderful husband, Roy. The two live in New London, CT where they raised two (now adult) daughters.

Her latest full-length novel The Heart of War blends timeless Greek Mythology with Erotica, Romance, and Suspense as Ares God of War falls in love with Alena, a seemingly fragile Fey. The lovely Alena is on the run from Cernunnos, Celtic God of the Forest and Death. The peace and quiet of Ares' secluded Greek isle is interrupted when the Olympians demand he turned her over to them. Glorious battles, hot romance, and dark passions combine in "The Heart of War".

On December 31, 2011 A God is Born when Ares and Alena and welcome their son, Raven into the world in Child of War

Lisa proudly boasts that her writing career began in her junior high school years, around the 7th grade. A fact which her fellow students adored but often got her called down to the Guidance Counselor's Office to discuss her stories. Not deterred by the counselors but instead spurred onward by them, her teachers, and her classmates, Lisa continued to hone her craft throughout those formative years.

Today, Lisa brings conflict, passion, love, and suspense to unique couples through her full length novels. Never one to shy away from the less pleasant things in life, and instead believing it is in the Darkness where Character is created, determined, and defined, her heroes and heroines have their love tested by demons from within and without.

Child of War:  A God is Born, OF WAR series Book #2
Author:  Lisa Beth Darling
Synopsis:  Do you know 'Damien'? Raven makes that kid look like an angel.

The "Of War"-series picks up in part I of this II-part sequel when Ares and Alena try to settle down on Olympus and await the birth of their son, Raven.

Haunted by prophetic visions along with a body and mind that are starting to betray her, Alena struggles to enjoy what should be a happy and blessed occasion. The relentless hostility from the other Olympians make her yearn to be back on their cozy island home, far away from all the bickering and backstabbing that makes up Life on mighty Mount Olympus.

Knowing of Zeus' unabashed hatred for Alena and the Celts, Ares becomes convinced Zeus is causing these visions and the breakdown of Alena's mind. To appease his Father, the God of Gods, Ares enters into a wicked blood pact ensuring the safety of his wife and unborn son. A pact that could cost the God of War everything he holds dear.

However, once the boy arrives, it quickly becomes clear Raven may be the most powerful and cunning Olympian ever born. Outwardly despised by Zeus for his Fey blood and his filthy Celtic mother the seeds of rage and doubt are planted in the Raven's mind by a very willing Apollo.

As Zeus, Apollo, and Aphrodite plot against the new family, bit by bit the true pasts of the Olympians and Celts comes to light, the battle begins for Raven’s mind and soul and for the ultimate control of Olympus

Our Review [by Michelle L. Olson – LITERAL ADDICTION’s Pack Alpha]:
Lisa Beth Darling’s 2nd book in the Of War series was everything I expected it to be – dark, sexy, vicious, and absolutely gripping.   

Child of War picks up where Heart of War left off, with Alena pregnant and she and Ares living on Mt. Olympus as a happily married couple (well as happy as a married couple on Olympus can be anyway).  The pregnancy is tough on her though and she’s experiencing a lot of things that are downright scary - all of which are compounded by Ares’s completely dysfunctional Olympian family and their inability to accept her heritage.

Once Raven enters the world things get even more, um… interesting…

Alena and Ares’s love, one that has dumfounded the rest of the Olympians because of its strength and purity, is tested to its limits by the stressors of parenthood, life on Olympus, the interference of Ares’s family and by their child himself. 

Raven is something else.  As the synopsis states, he is definitely no angel, and he is Ares’s son (as Ares was before Alena) through and through with an added dose of wicked thrown in.  Highly advanced, even for an Olympian, this child is a force of nature and then some and had me gasping and shaking my head more than once.

There were so many moments in this book where I was mumbling profanities at one character or the other or being aghast at something that happened, that had anyone been around to witness it, I probably would be institutionalized!  It was simply that moving.

I will say again, however, that Lisa’s books are not for the faint of heart.  If you want a fluffy paranormal romance this is not the place to look.  If you want a dark erotic romance with enough thriller to be captivating and intriguing, then this series is definitely for you.  Anyone who has read any actual history books on the Gods and Goddesses knows that times were not like they are now and that things were different, they were more brutal.  Lisa brings back that dark reality in her Of War series and it simply wouldn’t be the same without it.

An amazing second installment to a wonderful series, this one ends on one heck of a cliff-hanger and had me very upset that the 3rd book was not available yet because I didn’t want the thrill ride to end. 

LITERAL ADDICTION gives Child of War:  A God is Born 4 ½  Skulls and would recommend it for anyone who loves mythology and is looking for an edgy, gritty, erotic paranormal romance.  We highly recommend  reading Heart of War before settling in with Child of War though, there’s just too much history and story that you’d be missing and you’ll enjoy Child of War so much more if you’ve read Heart of War first. 

I cannot wait to see what Lisa has in store for us with Child of War:  Rising Son.  The way things progressed and her writing evolved just from book #1 to book #2, I can only imagine that great things are in store. 

Child of War:  A God is Born: