Saturday, January 17, 2009

Shadow Harvest


Title: Shadow Harvest
Author: James Buchanan
Publisher: MLR Press
Publisher URL: http://www.mlrpress.com/books.php
ISBN: 978-1-934531-54-9
Genre: Paranormal, M/M
Nymph Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx

The Horned Lord - 3 Nymphs
A mortal is performing party tricks for his friends but on this night, the form he imagined in his darkest fantasies awaits him in his bedroom.

Jack - 4 Nymphs
Working the night shift as a security guard, Blake has a fantastic sexual interlude from a phantom lover named Jack.

Darkness - 4 Nymphs
Justin’s destiny is changed when he is rescued from a deadly attack by creatures that are intent on consuming him. After saving Justin, the fallen angel Brand must allow Justin free will to choose which realm he will dwell in.

Harvest - 3 Nymphs
Grahm learns the bitter lesson that the bounty of the fields only lasts for a season and then returns to the soil, even the scarecrows.

Out of the Woods - 5 Nymphs
Stas had the gift for casting killing spells, for which he was well paid, but his love spells seem to have fallen short or so he thought until one night, he found his desired Misha waiting for him and discovered he was a lot more than Stas had bargained for.

Sugar Skull - 3 Nymphs
A mistake relating to eating a sugar skull changes Amado’s fate and sets into motion events leading up to a night of pleasure with two men.

My Brother, Coyote - 5 Nymphs
True is the light to Seth’s darkness. Bound by spirit, no matter what troubles Seth is engaged in, he always returns to True, who is the keeper of his heart.

Shadow Harvest is a collection of stories steeped in cultural rituals and beliefs. The amazing James Buchanan delivers thought provoking insight on the diverse origins and the chilling results of their celebrations. This is an intriguing and very erotic collection that motivated me to explore the myths to better comprehend the depth of these attention-grabbing and enjoyable stories.

Getting Back to Delaney


Title: Getting Back To Delaney
Author: Christie Walker Bos
Publisher: Cerridwen Press
Publisher URL: http://www.jasminejade.com/
ISBN: 9781419917868
Genre: Contemporary M/F Romance
Nymph Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Rose Nymph

Delaney McKenzie has sworn off men. Each time she lets a guy get close, it seems to end in heartache. She thought she’d found someone she could trust, Pablo, with his contagious enthusiasm for her new venture into the world of art. She’d trained and paid her dues before finally branching out to run her own gallery, just as she’d always dreamed. She thought Pablo figured into that dream too but catching her lover in a compromising position with one of her featured artists over the desk in her office brought her momentary bliss crashing down around her. He had only seen Delaney as a way of promoting himself, how had she been so blind?

It just seems like every man in her life has tried to change her, meld her into what they need her to be in order to achieve their dreams. Well, not any more. It’s time to start putting her needs and dreams first. With Pablo out of the picture, she begins to rebuild her life, moving in to a lovely little area with some rather interesting neighbors just itching to introduce themselves. When a new gallery opens up just down the street from her place, the support of her new friends gives her determination a much needed boost. She definitely doesn’t need a man to get things done. If only someone would tell Tyler Szymanski that. Ever since Tyler walked into her gallery, the man won’t leave her alone. Who is this new man who is so insistent on rescuing her and why is he asking so many questions about the gallery? Whatever his story, Delaney definitely isn’t going to fall for it this time…

Getting Back to Delaney is a wonderful story of the journey to find strength from within and the importance of honesty. Delaney has realized there is a pattern emerging in her life and she needs to find the strength to break the cycle. Tyler is there to offer his support and expertise, knowing full well he could help Delaney achieve her goals in life. After what has happened in her past, it’s completely understandable that Delaney is weary but her caution threatens to destroy something with real potential. Tyler’s secrecy isn’t helping either.

Christie Walker Bos has created a rich and vivid setting for realistic, lovable characters. At first I found the detail put into their surroundings slightly overwhelming but it was no struggle whatsoever to continue on and I was rewarded for it. If you like immersing yourself in the lives and loves of others, sharing their joy, frustration and sadness, as I do, I strongly recommend Getting Back to Delaney.

Acacia III: Cravings


Title: Acacia III: Cravings
Author: L. Shannon
Publisher: Changeling Press
Publisher URL: http://www.changelingpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60521-146-6
Genre: Paranormal/Futuristic/Ménage
Nymph Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx


Queen Caitlin is trying to avoid a war, and the two men capable of assisting and protecting her happen to be werewolves. Brothers Jem and Ross Silvis are a cut above your average werewolf; they are warriors, honor bound to follow through with their promises. Caitlin approaches them with an offer she feels they cannot refuse, and Ross proves he has strong negotiation skills. However, if all parties agree, they will find a life filled with happiness as mates.

Acacia III: Cravings is the third installment of the Acacia series. The setting is perfect for what Caitlin will have to endure, and she lets her fangs out in this installment. I loved watching her interaction with Jem and Ross. Their connection provides them the strength needed to survive this battle, and will forge their future. Truly, she does discover some of her enemies in this book, but there are more to come. L. Shannon brings action and suspense in Acacia III: Cravings. I’m looking forward to seeing what she has in store for us in the next book in this series.

Warriors at Heart


Title: Warriors at Heart
Author: Lynn Lorenz
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: http://loose-id.com/
ISBN: 978-1-59632-751-1
Genre: Vampire Paranormal
Nymph Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymph Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Life can be hard, even for a 450 year-old vampire. He’s tired of his existence, lonely and his latest convert, David, is an irritating, annoying and pain-loving idiot. Events at David’s so-called vampire graduation ceremony don’t go as planned. The virgin sacrifice, Fiona that Ivan picked for David, turns out to be a kick-ass woman capable of wielding a sword. But, the situation only gets worse when a black-clad male warrior arrives to rescue her, leaving only Ivan and another young convert, Annie, as the only survivors of a vampire hit gone bad.

Nic has been killing vampires for 15 years. He’s determined and dedicated to eliminating all the blood-sucking monsters that killed his parents years before. His attitude makes a dramatic change when he unwillingly gets to know the very likable but dangerous Ivan, when they work together to save Fiona’s kidnapped sister. Unfortunately, the council who employs Nic doesn’t want to hear about vampires who help humans, or a power struggle within the Vampire Board of Elders, and determines Ivan and Annie must die.

This hidebound edict sets the four new friends on a path that will change all of their lives forever. Can they find a way to work together, to fight together, or will the anger and pain of the past destroy the two couple’s chance for a happy future.

Warriors at Heart is the newest release by author Lynn Lorenz, and the first in her new series Warriors. I have to say that when I first started this book, I wasn’t certain I was going to like Ivan. He seemed cold, disinterested in life and more than a little inhumane. Yet, it wasn’t long before this dangerous vampire had grown on me, made me wish the poor man could find a little happiness. This is just one example of Ms. Lorenz’s ability to construct a tale that pulls her readers into the story. She has taken four vastly different members of society, twisted and turned the circumstances, added in betrayal, deceit and attempted murder, and come up with two couples perfect for each other. Then she adds mutual need and likable personalities, crafting a powerful four person/vampire fighting machine.

I admit that there were times in the beginning that I had difficulty keeping track of what was going on, but that was due to the number of characters and the story being told in their viewpoints. Once I reached the portion where the two couple joined forces, the plot flowed fast and furious toward the end. There’s a lot going on in the background with the Council that Nic works for and the vampire Board of Elders. Nothing is as it seems with either group, and internal politics appear to be playing a major role in dictating the actions of our characters. I look forward to seeing where this intriguing series is going with the next release.

Slade and Kally


Title: Slade and Kally
Author: AE Rought
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL: http://samhainpublishing.com/
ISBN: 978-1-60504-246-6
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Nymph Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Scandalous Minx


Kally Jensen knows it’s time to leave Michigan and her abusive fiancé behind. With little money, but finally enough courage to walk away, she decides to restart her life with the assistance of a childhood friend. What she doesn’t count on are the icy roads that lead to a car accident and the man of her dreams, Slade Carlson, coming to her rescue.

Slade and Kally is the first story in the Letting Go of the Reins series. While the story is a wonderful reminder of how easy it is to become a part of a dangerous and abusive relationship, it also allows us to focus on the gift of friendship and love. Slade’s character is struggling with accepting his place on the family ranch, and the pull between two occupations. Kally is attempting to reclaim the woman she once was. There were times I truly shook my head at Kally, but was happy that Slade was a patient man. While I loved the concept, I, at times, felt the story flowed a little too slowly. There were moments I wished the characters were a bit more decisive, especially Kally and just do what her heart wanted. I found the Slade and Kally to be an enjoyable story that leaves thought-provoking images in its wake.

Carpathian Intrigue


Title: Carpathian Intrigue
Author: John Simpson
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Publisher URL: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1935192-33-6
Genre: Paranormal/Gay/Historical
Nymph Rating: 3 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Satyr Vael

Christopher, a young scholar, makes a trek to the Carpathian Mountains in Romania with the hopes of losing himself in the legendary library at Bran Castle. When he arrives, he expects to be greeted by an aging count -- not by a gorgeous young man. Michael is far from what Christopher thought he would find, in many ways.

The young count takes Christopher under his wing, so to speak, introducing the virginal scholar to pleasures with another man. Their mutual affection grows quickly, delighting them both.

However, there are secrets hidden within Bran Castle, in its library and its dungeon. When Christopher stumbles upon a set of scrolls, he discovers things that might very well change them both forever.

Carpathian Intrigue is a gothic romance reminiscent of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, though not quite as dark and malevolent. The setting is very appropriate, given Michael’s ancestry, and the tone of the novel is rich and beautifully written. Michael is a gracious and alluring host, and Christopher, while learned, still retains the naivety of youth.

I found myself lured into the story from the descriptions alone, which brought the setting to life. However, while the love scenes were indeed sexy, the language threw me out of the story a bit. As rich and poetic as the prose and dialogue were throughout the book, the descriptions and dialogue used during the sex scenes left me a bit bewildered.

Overall, Carpathian Intrigue is a good book, and my first from John Simpson. I’m certainly interested in reading more from this author, though.

Dream Walk


Title: Dream Walk
Author: Meg Allison
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publisher URL: http://samhainpublishing.com/
ISBN: 1-60504-191-2
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Nymph Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymph Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Camille Bryant is more than a talented romance author. She’s also a powerful psychic who’s being slowly driven mad by a series of terrifying nightmares. When her friend and editor assigns her a live-in bodyguard, she finds herself forced to accept the help of a Sentinel, a warrior of an ancient race of which she is unknowingly a part of. Ian Spain is everything she’s ever dreamed of, and he’s the type of man who plays a dominant part in all of her popular novels. The only problem is that as much as he intrigues and arouses her, he also makes her uncomfortable and annoyed. Then on top of everything else, when she is able to sleep, he starts invading her dreams, not only as her defender, but as her lover.

Ian Spain is much more than what he appears at first glance. While he might have been born human and worked for many years of his life as an FBI agent, he’s also a warrior of an ancient race…a sentinel. Now, instead of working for the US government, he works at protecting members of his race who are in danger. He’s a dream walker and has been sent to Camille to invade her dreams and banish the demon terrorizing her during the night. Except the demon and Camille both are far stronger and more powerful than they appear. Ian doesn’t know if he has the strength to protect the woman he’s come to love, or to defeat a demon capable of moving from one body to another.

It’s always a pleasure when an author manages to grab my attention in the first pages of a book and keeps it until the end. That’s exactly what Ms. Allison did with her latest release, Dream Walk. It’s the first in her new series, The Sentinels and if this intricately plotted and crafted book is any indication, the readers of this new contemporary paranormal romance series are in for an awesome ride.

The plot is constructed in such as way that it pulls in myth and legend, seamlessly adding it to contemporary life, giving the reader an overall story arc, which actually seems plausible. The other thing about this book that I appreciated was that even though the plot revolves around the paranormal, it’s fueled by the developing relationship between Cami and Ian. These two are both a little damaged and they need the other to be whole, even if that isn’t apparent to either when they first meet. Of the two, Cami is by far the one with the most painful emotional baggage, and at times it didn’t seem like she’d ever open up and let Ian’s love for her in. But it was wonderful that he never gave up on her, that he was determined to keep her safe, even from herself, if necessary. He’s dedicated, protective, and dangerous, just the type of alpha character needed for a plot of this magnitude.

There’s really nothing about this book that I didn’t like, including it’s longer than normal e-book length. The pace is fast, the setting rich and detailed, the background information doled out nicely without being an information dump, and the characters of Cami and Ian, well-rounded, thoroughly developed and likable. I’m looking forward to the next release in this exciting series, tentatively entitled Shattered.

Spaceport: Time Bomb


Title: Spaceport: Time Bomb
Author: Lena Austin
Publisher: Changeling Press
Publisher URL: http://www.changelingpress.com/
ISBN: 978-1-59596-691-9
Genre: Futuristic Ménage, M/F/M
Nymph Rating: 3 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx


Captain Pepper Corstorphine and her cyborg partner Kade Starke are playing a computer game aboard their space ship when they observe an old wrecked shuttle floating in space. Hauling the wreck into their cargo bay, they discover that the old ship has artifacts from old earth worth billions of credits and a priceless treasure named Dr. Logan MacDonald. Once information leaks out about the treasure, Logan, Pepper and Kade may be forced into turning the ship into a time bomb that could obliterate the spaceport.

Spaceport: Time Bomb is an interesting speculation on what the future could hold for the arts. Lena Austin produces a creative view of a world without books and other forms of the arts that exist today. This is an out of the ordinary story I found enjoyable.