Wednesday, January 30, 2013

[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Blood Oranges

Kathleen Tierney was born near Dublin, Ireland, but has spent most of her life in the southeastern United States. In college, she studied zoology, geology, and palaeontology, and has been employed as a vertebrate palaeontologist and college-level biology instructor. The results of her scientific research have been published in the JOURNAL OF VERTEBRATE PALAEONTOLOGY, THE JOURNAL OF PALAEONTOLOGY and elsewhere. In 1992, she began writing her first novel, THE FIVE OF CUPS (it remained unpublished until 2003). Her first published novel, SILK (1998), earned her two awards and praise from critics and such luminaries as Neil Gaiman, Clive Barker, Peter Straub, and Poppy Z. Brite. Her next novel, THRESHOLD (2001), was also an award-winner, and since then she has written LOW RED MOON (2003), MURDER OF ANGELS (2004), DAUGHTER OF HOUNDS (2007), and, forthcoming, THE RED TREE. She is a prolific short fiction author, and her award-winning short stories have been collected in TALES OF PAIN AND WONDER (2000), WRONG THINGS (with Poppy Z. Brite; 2001), FROM WEIRD AND DISTANT SHORES (2002), and TO CHARLES FORT, WITH LOVE (2005), ALABASTER (2006), FROG TOES AND TENTACLES (2005), TALES FROM THE WOEFUL PLATYPUS (2007), and, most recently, the sf collection, A IS FOR ALIEN (2009). She has also scripted comics for DC/Vertigo, including THE DREAMING ('97-'01), THE GIRL WHO WOULD BE DEATH ('98), and BAST: ETERNITY GAME ('03). Her short sf novel THE DRY SALVAGES was published in 2004, and has published numerous chapbooks since 2000. Caitlin also fronted the goth-rock band Death's Little Sister in 1996-1997, once skinned a lion, and likes sushi. She lives in Providence, RI with her partner, Kathryn, and her two cats, Hubero and Smeagol. She also writes as "Caitlin R. Kiernan".

Blood Oranges
Author:  Kathleen Tierney

My name’s Quinn.

If you buy into my reputation, I’m the most notorious demon hunter in New England. But rumors of my badassery have been slightly exaggerated. Instead of having kung-fu skills and a closet full of medieval weapons, I’m an ex-junkie with a talent for being in the wrong place at the right time. Or the right place at the wrong time. Or…whatever.

Wanted for crimes against inhumanity I (mostly) didn’t commit, I was nearly a midnight snack for a werewolf until I was “saved” by a vampire calling itself the Bride of Quiet. Already cursed by a werewolf bite, the vamp took a pint out of me too.

So now…now, well, you wouldn’t think it could get worse, but you’d be dead wrong.

Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Pack Alpha - Michelle L. Olson:
*ARC Received from the Publisher in exchange for an honest Review

When I opened the package from the Publisher containing this book I was immediately intrigued, but wasn't sure that I'd get to it any time soon and simply added it to the pile of 'read when/if time allows'. After looking the book up on GoodReads and finding that I had other titles by the author and her pseudonym in my TBR list, I decided to bump it up a bit in the queue. I am SO happy that I did.

Blood Oranges wasn't at all what I was expecting, but it was wonderful. Truly, uniquely, & darkly "real" - only in a fantastical way - and the 1st person narrative was compelling, gripping, & profound. Add all of that together with the tale itself and the setting, and it was a dark urban fantasy meant to ensnare.

I'm not entirely sure that this book is for everyone, but I loved it! I think maybe I loved it BECAUSE of all of the things others might not like... It's blatantly honest in it's delivery. It purposefully makes the reader feel awkward at times. It doesn't adhere to (and in reality, entirely disregards!) any and all preconceived notions regarding the genre - the vampires in this book have piranha teeth and shark eyes, the werewolves are as far from sexy as you can get, the heroine doesn't want to be a monster hunter and is admittedly a junkie and a liar, etc), and the first person narrative is slang filled, non-linear, and very obviously written by someone who is not a writer (something Quinn, our heroine, makes sure to remind us about). :)

Bottom line, if you want to try something different within Urban Fantasy, I highly suggest giving Blood Oranges a shot. I think that this is the first book of a series, and I really hope that it is, because I find myself wanting to fall into Quinn's dysfunctional world again some day. :)

LITERAL ADDICTION gives Blood Oranges 4 Skulls.

Blood Oranges


[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Hunting Daylight

Piper Maitland lives on a Tennessee farm with her family. She is the author of the paramormal romance, Acquainted With the Night (Berkley/November 2011). The sequel,  Hunting Daylight, will be published on 2/5/13 by Berkley/Penguin USA. Piper has also written novels under the name Michael Lee West.

Hunting Daylight, Book #2 of the NIGHT series
Author:  Piper Maitland

Out of the Shadows…
For more than a decade, Caro Barrett has had doubts about the death of her husband, Jude, who disappeared while looking for tribe of day-walking vampires in an African rainforest. Now, their daughter Vivi is struggling through her teenage years without a father. Waiting in the wings is Raphael Della Rocca, an ancient vampire ready to possess Caro’s heart–and to protect her and Vivi from harm. And, with Caro’s husband declared legally dead, she feels it’s finally time to move on….
A hemisphere away in a windowless compound, an Ottoman vampire lies dying from a rare blood disease that has made him vulnerable to the faintest bit of light. Yet he is determined to vanquish its power over him– to feel the sun on his face one last time. And in Caro’s darkest fears, he will be lifted into the light of day.

Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Pack Alpha - Michelle L. Olson:
*ARC Received from the Publisher in exchange for an honest Review

When this book came in the mail from the Publisher and I looked up the series on GoodReads I knew immediately that I'd want to read them. I didn't, however, expect to enjoy it as much as I did.

This is a long book, it's 560 pages, and I absolutely could not put it down! My first reaction upon finishing it was this: "Oh wow! I rarely cry over books, but the hold that this book had over me & the ending had me in tears for sure. Outside of that, it was like a James Bond/Bourne Legacy flick meets Blood Diamond on paper, all with vampires... Super strong & sassy heroines. Incredible heroes. Utterly despicable villains, & a story that just wouldn't quit. I loved it all!!"

Husband and wife, Caro and Jude, are madly in love but in need of money. They have a 3 year old daughter whose very existence sparks fanaticism and has had them on the run for years just to be safe. You see, Caro is a hybrid, a 1/2 vampire, and Jude is a vampire, but wasn't when Vivi was conceived, thus making Vivi a 1/4 vampire and the talk of the entire immortal race for one reason or another; especially those that are of the paranoid or superstitious variety.

In order to make some extra money for the family, Jude decides to take a position in the African rainforests for a company called Al Din, utilizing his skills as a biochemist to study a new species of bat that has been discovered, but he has no idea what he's walking into there and he mysteriously disappears, leaving long time friend of the family and Godfather to Vivi, Raphael, to step in once again as protector and continue the farce he's played for well over a decade, denying his feelings for Caro while trying to convince himself that just being part of her and Vivi's life is enough.

*sigh* Oh how I'd love to tell you more, but I don't do spoiler reviews, so you're just going to have to check it out for yourself to find out what happens! :) Let me just say this in addition to my little summation in my intro above - While this book is an Urban Fantasy it felt so very real! While unbelievably action packed and full of twists and turns, danger, intrigue and surprises, it all felt like it could happen (albeit with a little stretch of the imagination of course, but that's why we read UF and PNR, right!?). It also has some wonderful romance, and was so vividly written in every aspect that I truly was drawn in and invested in everything the book had to offer.

LITERAL ADDICTION gives Hunting Daylight 5 Skulls and highly recommends it! The last bits of the book took my breath away and I can only hope that the next installment shakes things up even more. I have found a new top 10 UF series and can't wait for more from Piper.

Hunting Daylight

[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Between

Kerry Schafer was born and raised in Canada*, moved back and forth across the border several times, and finally settled on a compromise. She now lives in Washington state, but within an hour’s drive of her home and native land. Her childhood book collection traveled with her through all of those moves, and although she now owns a Kindle she continues to acquire books and bookshelves. During her lifetime, Kerry has worked as a lumber piler, an OB nurse, a secretary, and a substitute teacher, among other things. No matter where she lives or what she is doing, she finds a way to create writing time. Currently she balances writing and family with her work as a mental health counselor.
*And yes, she does sometimes say ‘eh?’ but never, ever ‘aboot.’

Between, THE BETWEEN Book #1
Author:  Kerry Schafer

 Vivian’s life is finally on track. She has a job she loves as an ER doctor and has just met – literally – the man of her dreams. But when her eccentric grandfather is murdered and designates her as his next of kin, she discovers that she is the last of a race of beings known as dreamshifters. It is her task to guard the doorways between waking and dreaming, which have already begun to unravel, spilling dangerous creatures from dream into the waking world. When she sets out to close the open doors and protect her town and the people she loves, Vivian confronts dragons, intrigue, and the dark secrets of her own family history. In the end, she comes face to face with a sorceress seeking eternal life and ultimate power. Vivian must find a way to stop her, or reality will be forever altered.

Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Pack Alpha - Michelle L. Olson:
*ARC received from the Pub in exchange for an honest review

THE BETWEEN is a brand new Urban Fantasy series unlike anything I've read before, & one I will be returning to as soon as I can...

Between is the debut novel of this new series about dream shifter, Vivian, who was kept in the dark about her origins and her past and who has trouble reconciling things because she's a doctor and puts her stock in science and what she can see, not myth and magic. The problem is that she DOES see these things, and after awhile, she can't deny that something is going on and she needs to get to the bottom of it.

The other world that Vivian is a part of and unwittingly thrown back into is a magical, mystical place full of dragons, knights, and yes, even an evil queen, and things don't always go as planned or end up 'happily ever after'. That was one thing that I really loved about the book - it was surprising, and wonderfully unique, and while a lot of debut books can be a bit overwhelming with setting up the characters, the world, the backstory, etc, Between seemed just right to me. :)

The ending was great! It left me wanting the next installment, but didn't make me want to scream and throw things because I needed more immediately to feel like I got closure. There is a lot to be done to make things right, a lot of riddles still to be solved, additional character development to be had, etc, so I can't wait to see what book #2 has in store when I finally get my hands on it. Bottom line is that Kerry has a winner here and I couldn't put it down.

Random side note: If you follow my site or me on Facebook, you know that I'm a HUGE Edgar Allan Poe fan (I even named my black cat Poe Rayvn). There is a penguin in this book that Vivian names Poe and he is the cutest thing ever! :)

LITERAL ADDICTION gives Between 4 Skulls and definitely recommends it to Urban Fantasy readers looking for something new and fun.  


[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Malakai

Michele Hauf has been writing romance, action-adventure and fantasy stories for over nineteen years. Her first published novel was “Dark Rapture”.
France, musketeers, vampires, and faeries populate her stories. And if she followed the adage ‘write what ou know’, all her stories would have snow in them. Fortunately she steps beyond her comfort zone and writes about countries she has never visited and creatures she has never seen.
The proud creator of the BEWITCHING THE DARK, WICKED GAMES, OF ANGELS AND DEMONS, CHANGELINGS, THE NETWORK, THE SAINT-SYLVESTRES, and THIS WITCHERY series, Michele continues to amaze release after release.

Author:  Michele Hauf

Cursed at birth, should he ever fall in love with a faery he must ransom his heart—literally—Malakai Saint-Pierre has always avoided faeries. The insatiable werewolf is known about town as Casanova, and his next conquest just may prove the most dangerous challenge to his wanting heart.

The vampire sidhe can be deadly to any man who seeks inspiration through her sensual allure. But Rissa must feed her hunger for life energy through an endless stream of lovers. The valiant werewolf, Kai, will soften her heart and she, in turn, will force him to face his greatest fear—to win her love.

Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Pack Alpha - Michelle L. Olson:
I'm a huge Michele Hauf fan. I can honestly say that I have not met a Michele Hauf book that I haven't liked. Some I have adored, some I have loved, some were just incredibly enjoyable in different ways, but I have liked them all. Malakai was absolutely fantastic! When Michele told me that she was self-pubbing Blu and Creed's son's story, I immediately pre-ordered it and am so glad that I had a chance to sit down and devour it.

First off, this story is HOT! Michele didn't hold back at all and I absolutely loved it. From the very first page it was immediately anticipatory and steamy, and oddly, as is known to happen for me with Paranormal Romance Novellas, it didn't seem forced or rushed.

I really enjoyed the whole 'forbidden love' thing that was going on with Kai and Rissa, and the action, suspense, and semi-surprising turns of events that led to their ultimate happy ending were fabulous.

I also enjoyed how Michele used an Epilogue to get us further into the future with the couple after things all worked out, thus setting things up should they appear in another book (one of the things I absolutely love about Michele's writing!), and/or for the eventual story of their daughter, Daisy (I hope!).

LITERAL ADDICTION gives Malakai 5 Skulls and definitely recommends it. Not only to Michele Hauf fans who know who the characters are, but to all Paranormal Romance fans.

Thank goodness Michele is a writing machine, because I hate waiting for her next book. :)


Monday, January 21, 2013

[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Blood of the Sorceress

Maggie ShayneIt was a sleepless night spent caring for a sick baby that jump-started New York Times Bestselling Author Maggie Shayne’s writing career.

A voracious reader and prolific writer from childhood, Maggie found herself without a book to read while coddling the colicky child. So instead she began spinning a tale of her own, creating a plotline that evolved in her thoughts until, a few days later, she sat down and wrote the story in longhand.

Now the author of more than forty novels, ranging from stories about Witches, vampires, psychics and ghosts, to bone chilling, edge-of-your-seat romantic suspense and beyond. The genres she has mastered include women’s fiction, category romance, romantic suspense, and paranormal fiction. Maggie has honed her lyrical prose and made a name for herself on the New York Times, USA Today,, B.Dalton, Booksense, Ingram’s, Barnes and Noble, and Waldenbooks (where she reached #1) bestseller lists.

Maggie is the winner of numerous awards, including two Romantic Times Bookclub Career Achievement Awards, the National Readers Choice Award, and the coveted RITA Award, for which she was nominated twelve times before finally winning.

She has also written for CBS daytime dramas, Guiding Light and As the World Turns. One of Maggie’s novels, Eternity, has been optioned for film.

Blood of the Sorceress, book #3 of THE PORTAL series
Author: Maggie Shayne

The last of three ancient witches, Lillia has been reborn to fulfill the remaining part of her legacy to rescue her love, Demetrius. Demetrius is certainly attracted to Lillia but the passage of time — and the influence of a treacherous high priest — has hardened him; he does not want the remaining piece of his soul. But Demetrius and Lillia will need to work together to defeat the evil that has stalked them for more than three centuries.

Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Pack Alpha - Michelle L. Olson:
*eARC received from NetGalley

Immediately upon finishing this book my exact words were: "Whoa! I've read a lot of good books in my time. A LOT. Heck, I've read a ton of amazing Maggie Shayne books! But The Portal series has literally blown me away, and this installment..... I'm speechless right now. It literally took my breath away, made my heart pound so hard it almost hurt, and gave me goosebumps besides. Absolutely incredible!!"

THE PORTAL series is truly epic. Full of magick, romance, intrigue, action and heart. It pulls you along and doesn't let go and makes you yearn for the next installment immediately upon finishing the one at hand. Blood of the Sorceress, being the final book of the series was perfectly set, wrapped everything up beautifully, and even opened the way for a spin-off series should Maggie ever decide she might like to do one. *fingers crossed*

I hate that I can't go on and on about the book as a whole, but I just can't without spoilers. I can tell you that there is a romance that has endured eons, a family that loves each other unconditionally despite their troubles, a villain that is absolutely despicable, action and intrigue that, while somewhat expected, were perfectly set into the storyline, supporting characters that you love and need, and prose that makes you wish you didn't ever have to put the book down.

I would recommend Blood of the Sorceress and the entire PORTAL series starting with the eNovella prequel, Legacy of the Witch, to EVERYONE and hope that others will get just as carried away on this spellbinding journey has I have. These books are already getting a bit worn and I can foresee them becoming quite ratty as the years wear on, whether that be realistically or metaphorically with the eBook versions, simply because they deserve a re-read (or 2 or 3...) and more than deserve to be shared!

LITERAL ADDICTION gives Blood of the Sorceress a very well deserved 5 Skulls. I'm sad to see the series end, but I am honored to have been a part of the journey!

Blood of the Sorceress

Friday, January 11, 2013

[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Infinite Surrender

Gayle Donnelly and Robyn Mackenzie both hail from the Midwest. Writing partners as well as friends (perhaps even sisters in another life), both are married and each has two wonderful children. The similarities don’t stop there. Both earned degrees in English education, both have a profound weakness for Starbucks coffee, and both are completely captivated by the ethereal beauty found in the Pacific Northwest. Their individual passions for writing and storytelling, led them to create Infinite Betrayal, the first book in their Infinity Series.

Infinite Surrender, BLOOD FEUD Book #2
Authors:  Gayle Donnelly & Robyn Mackenzie


Shape-shifting Coteri warrior Talon is mad with jealousy at the thought of Chloe, the woman he loves, being with other men. After a sizzling encounter, Talon is stunned to realize she's only his-has only ever been his. But his family line is tainted and he knows he isn't good enough for the torturously tempting redhead.

Spurned by the best friend she betrayed and rejected by the man she wants so badly it hurts, Chloe leaves her home with the Coteri to investigate a series of brutal murders that could have sinister implications for them all.

When he learns there's a traitor in their ranks and Chloe could be in danger, Talon will move heaven and earth to make sure she's safe-and to make her his, body and soul.

Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Pack Alpha - Michelle L. Olson:
I adored Gayle and Robyn's first book, Infinite Betrayal, so I was eagerly awaiting the release of Infinite Surrender, and I have to say... the ladies did not let me down! :)

I fell in love with both Talon and Chloe in book #1, so having their story unfold and wrap up some of the loose ends from Infinite Betrayal was wonderful. Their tale in Infinite Surrender was a frustrating, heartbreaking, breath-taking, sexy as all get-out adrenaline rush and I enjoyed each and every page!

Chloe is exactly the type of heroine that I love. She's strong, independent, snarky, and lovable. Talon is her Achilles heal, though, and I thought the ladies wrote it wonderfully trying to get her to move on while still holding true to her heart.

Talon is the uber Alpha Male. I wanted to slap him silly at the beginning of the book (talk about alpha-hole!), but have to say, while I generally don't go for it, his domineering, take no prisoners approach to win Chloe later on in the book was a huge turn on.

There are some supporting characters in this installment that I absolutely fell in love with and I cannot wait to see how much more we get to learn about each of them.

Gayle and Robyn are fabulous authors who know how to write a unique story full of steamy sexual tension, action, conflict, and drama. They pump it full of compelling characters and drop it in a vivid world guaranteed to snag your interest and keep you wanting more. With that all said, I give Infinite Surrender 5 Skulls and recommend it to all Paranormal Romance fans along with its predecessor, Infinite Betrayal. This series is amazing and I can't wait for more!

Infinite Surrender