Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Trip

Title:  The Trip
Author:  Bianca Sommerland
Publisher:  Noble Romance
Publisher URL:  www.nobleromance.com
ISBN:  978-1-60592-635-3
Genre:  {M/F}, BDSM
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer:  Amazon Nymph 

Shawna is reading a book with a BDSM theme before the bus she is on stops.  While Shawna is getting off the bus, she is accosted by a man that seems to know just what she wants. 

The Trip is a very fast paced intense book.  I enjoyed the way the author kept you interested, and ended up giving me a bit of a surprise, even though about halfway through the book, you realize Shawna knows Mark.  I do suggest keeping ice on hand as you read this. 

There were a few areas that some typos jarred the story and I did have to go back and reread a couple of places to get the exact meaning.  Ms. Sommerland did present some good rules such as using a safe word.  When the book first started, I did get some sense of danger to Shawna, but some people like to play with those types of scenarios.  Please note that one of the scenes contains dubious consent.  I recommend that this book should be on every BDSM lover’s bookshelf, and I for one will be reading this one again.

Soldier Mine

Title: Soldier Mine
Author: Amber Kell
Publisher: Silver Publishing
ISBN: 9781920501471
Genre: {M/M} Fantasy Shape-shifter Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

Kreslan is a soldier who’s unknowingly ‘volunteered’ for guard duty by a fellow officer with a chip on his shoulder. He ends up in the ship’s cargo hold where he’s assigned to protect a group of animals, including a valuable shape-shifting Thresl. Instead, Kreslan’s attacked and he ends up bound to the huge, protective Thresl…and Kres isn’t thrilled since it interferes with the plans for his life. Then he learns his Thresl is really the reincarnated leader of an entire planet. Can Kreslan give up his dreams of life on a starship and love with a human partner, for life with a possessive and dangerous shifter who doesn’t like to share? 

Soldier Mine is the first release in the new series The Thresl Chronicles by Amber Kell. It’s a fun, action-packed and entertaining tale that kept my attention from the first page to the last. The premise is original, the world building nicely developed and the personalities of Kres and Vohne intriguing. I liked these two; they complement each other in skills, strength, passion/aggressions and wisdom. There are plenty of twists and turns sprinkled throughout about their past relationship and how it relates to their present life together.  

The story becomes a little more predictable once Kres and Vohne reach the planet surface but that’s not terribly unexpected. Still, this portion gives us several interesting secondary characters, including Vohne’s brother, intrigue, betrayal and danger. I look forward to the next release in the series. Watch for it.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Steamed Up Memories

Title: Steamed Up Memories
Author: Corinne Davies
Publisher: Siren-Bookstrand
ISBN: 1-61034-704-8
Genre: {M/M/F} Steampunk, Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Rogue Satyr 

Liam McKenna left his highland clan years ago, after they refused to help him keep two daughters from being taken by their New World father.  He has never forgiven himself for letting them down and is afraid of ever hurting women again.  He has found solace in Tristan, his first mate of his airship ‘Apollo’.  He loves Tristan but hasn’t told him that. Tristan is afraid Liam doesn’t love him like he loves Liam. The fact they even come to blows doesn’t help. They both know their relationship needs something to stabilize them. 

Yzabeau ‘Yzzi’ Gifrator is the youngest daughter of the man who took her away from Liam, although she has suppressed that memory.  Given her father’s high standing in the New World government, and her hatred of some of the things her government condones, she has been spying for years. She has been giving the resistance certain information, especially concerning slaver rings, although she doesn’t believe her father is involved so she modifies certain documents so as not to incriminate him. Until recently she has carefully avoided putting herself into danger, slipping information to an unknown contact via her sister. 

Liam is on a mission to break up a slave pit. When he sees Yzzi spread eagled upright on the auction block, he fears that his actions may put this operation and the whole resistance at risk.

Steamed Up Memories is the second book in the erotic steampunk series Steampunked Lust. The title is very apt as it involves the memories, some of them repressed, of the major characters and how they react to their own, and others, memories and past actions. The characters are strong, wonderfully detailed and believable. They were minor characters in the first book of the series, have very different personalities than the protagonists in that book, and it is good to see them have a story of their own. In that book, it was hinted at that Liam and Tristan were a gay couple. There’s no hinting here with plenty of man love to go around. Corinne Davies still amazes and teases me with her world. It is a fantastic steampunk alternate earth that I want to see in great detail. The ‘Atlantis’ is something almost worthy of Jules Verne. But whereas the first book had the perfect balance of erotica and adventure in its plot, we see much less of the world and there is much less adventure here. It seems odd to say an erotic book had too much sex in it, but I felt this one did. Although the sex is wonderful and very hot, it starts to become redundant towards the end of the book. 

My biggest disappointment in Steamed Up Memories is that it almost has the same exact plot of the first book; an emotionally damaged woman (sisters at that) may find healing in an airship captain who is afraid to hurt woman and has a gay lover as first mate.  For example, early in both books the captain gives the woman an erotic massage to calm her down and make her forget her trauma. At times I was getting déjà vu. This may be because I read both books in quick succession.  

I really did like this book.  It may sound like I didn’t like it, or wouldn’t recommend it, but I did and I would.  These are more warnings then very negative points. I understand that an author wants to keep a good thing going. 

One more point I must make is that the editing seemed very bad; bad grammar, extra words, missing words, missing punctuation. This isn’t the fault of the author or the book, but by about a fourth of the way through the book it began to irritate me and infringe on my enjoyment of it. The worst part was a section towards the end where the point of view of the narrative jumps around from paragraph to paragraph. I well understand that an author may be in such a hurry to get their thoughts down, they plan on it being polished later. It wasn’t polished later and someone let many mistakes slip through. 

Again, I really do recommend this book, especially if you are an erotic steampunk fan. It has much more to offer than any drawback it may suffer.

Odd Man In

Title: Odd Man In
Author: K. M. Mahoney
Publisher: Total-E-Bound Publishing
Publisher URL: www.total-e-bound.com
ISBN: 978-0-85715-697-6
Genre: {M/M/M} Science Fiction
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx   

Space mercenary Daior Mathews is being held hostage, for reasons unknown to him.  Dai has already discovered there is no escape off of the tiny planet, so he waits to learn what his captive’s demands are. That night, Dai is surprised when the guards toss another hostage into his cell.  Terran is small, cute and instantly attracted to Dai.  Exploring their mutual attraction is a good motive to escape in Dai’s way of thinking, so he contacts his ex-lover Tam, who comes to the rescue. 

Odd Man In features a future world where everyone had some form of technological enhancement, the most common being intelligence augmentation.  These enhancements have created a not-totally-human race of people.  The storyline is a fast paced, action-packed adventure in hide and seek exploits, spaceship battles, galaxy jumps and hilarious commentary.  There are moments of steamy intimate scenes as well as emotional insecurities. The characters are especially convincing.  Dai and Tam are very much alike in personality, which has lead to numerous conflicts between them, even to the point of injury.  Both men are protectors who object to being protected themselves.  Terran has a snarky kind of personality on the surface; however he is very lovable along with being the gooey centre that binds the three men together in a contented relationship. 

K. M. Mahoney’s Odd Man In is an immensely enjoyable outstanding saga.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Alpha’s Prerogative

Title: Alpha’s Prerogative
Author: Charlie Richards
Publisher: eXtasy Books
ISBN: 978-1-55487-929-8
Genre: {M/M}, Shape-shifter, Series
Rating:  4 Nymphs
Literary Nymph Reviewer: Critter Nymph 

Lark has never had the best taste in men.  Finding himself beaten up more than once has lead the young man to swear off relationships, especially those with larger men.  Meeting Declan has Lark wondering if he needs to rethink his standing on relationships a little more. 

Alpha’s Prerogative is the second story in the Wolves of Stoneridge series and gave the readers a little more background on the pack.  I liked that the author choose this time to let the reader know the pack’s history, as well as Declan’s. The main characters in this story, Declan and Lark, are made for each other.  As much as Lark wants someone to love and care for him, Declan has been holding himself apart from others waiting for his mate.  The attraction is there from the beginning, although Lark is leery of the bigger man.  The first real intimate contact between the two does not help Declan’s cause any either.  I liked that the author made the Alpha work for his mate.  I also liked that, while Lark knows about shape shifters and mates, he has no idea who Declan is to him.  This allowed the author to throw a few monkey wrenches into the men’s relationship.  Bringing them together was well done, as was the scene in which Lark finds out about being Declan’s mate.   

Once again the pack is facing problems brought on by the poachers, which introduces several new characters to the series.  Readers again will find no conclusion to this aspect of the story and I can’t wait to see how the author plans to wrap that up.   I am looking forward to the upcoming story as I am very curious as to what form new comer Gordon Digby will take

The Chauffeur

Title: The Chauffeur
Author: Serena Yates
Publisher: Silver Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-920484-52-1
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

Kyle Anderson lost his modeling career after a car crash when he was eighteen and then his money-grubbing parent threw him out of the house. Now he works for his uncle’s limousine service as a chauffeur by day, for room and board, and at night he struts his stuff as a masked exotic dancer, for extra cash.  He’s self-conscious of his facial scar, so he’s surprised when he grabs the attention of hunky Nick Giddings, who’s visiting the club to forget his worries about his job. 

Nick’s been on his own since his parents kicked him out for a school prank he didn’t commit and it’s been tough making enough money to survive in the poor economy. When he meets Kyle, it’s like a dream come true but then his world come crashing down when his company downsizes and Nick loses his job as a forklift driver. What’s he going to do? 

The Chauffeur is the second release in the Workplace Encounters series by Serena Yates. Please note that despite being part of a series, each book can be read as a standalone. 

There’s something about Kyle and what happened to him that pulled me into the story immediately. The back story of the wreck and how his parents treated him afterwards is heartbreaking, as is his fear and anxiety over his unrepaired facial scar. Ms. Yates did a nice job expressing his emotions over the many things in his life out of his control.  Then there’s Nick, who’s experienced just as much tragedy in his life.  

I’m never disappointed in Ms. Yates writing and The Chauffeur isn’t any different. The writing is smooth, the premise believable, the characters well developed and likable, and there’s enough angst and suspense to keep things interesting. Kyle’s Uncle Gary’s a hard man to get a handle on. He’s tough and unbending...and then out of the blue there’s a huge shift and bang…he’s not the man you thought he was. The shocking revelation regarding him took me by surprise. Maybe I should have seen it coming but I didn’t. 

Nick and Kyle make a perfect match, inside the bedroom and out, and despite their own problems, Ms. Yates gets these two wounded men together, teaching them how to love and lean on each other. I look forward to the next release.

Too Hot

Title:  Too Hot
Author:  Lauren Fraser
Publisher:  Ellora’s Cave
ISBN:  9781419935695
Genre:  {M/F} Contemporary
Rating:  4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer:  Amethyst Nymph 

Nailing this job, shooting a fundraising calendar, is Josie Sharp’s dream.  Her career could really take off.  Work was the only good thing in her life right now and Josie didn’t want to mess that up, like other aspects of her life.  Too bad she isn’t as confident about her skills as a woman.  When she meets a fireman with an olive complexion, her knees turn to jelly and Josie starts fantasizing about what she’d love to do with him.  Never in a million years would Josie have guessed that Mr. Sexy was having the same fantasies. 

Marco Patelli’s chiseled body is like a walking poster for fitness and this is the one time his good looks are working against him.   He’s attracted to Josie but having a hard time convincing her that he’s serious.  Taking things slowly was the best plan to bring Josie out of her shell, but plans quickly changed when Marco could’t keep his mind off her sexy curves.  He’s just the man to help Josie let her guard down. 

Just when Josie is finally comfortable with being in a relationship with Marco, he drops a bomb that crushes her.  All her old fears come rushing back, stronger than ever.   Marco is in the dog house, but not for long.  Eventually he smoothes things out and the couple’s bond is stronger than ever.

Too Hot is a touching story of how one woman blossoms.  Josie sees herself as a larva instead of the beautiful butterfly she really is.  Her painful experience with her ex-boyfriend has left her with a low body image.  Josie is no different than thousands of other women, so I was able to understand her line of thinking. It’s so easy to fall into negativity like that and so hard to break away from it. When she meets Marco, Josie can’t understand why he’d be attracted to her and she almost pushes him away.  And Marco definitely had a hand in nearly destroying things, even though his intentions were good.  Because of the way he stood up for Josie, I was able to overlook his mistake.  That scene made me want to give him a second chance.  He was a good guy and that is always what matters at the end of the day.  There was also a scene where Marco opened up to Josie that warmed the corners of my heart. Who can resist an unexpected tender moment? Not me, that’s for sure. The girlie part of me squealed in mushy delight, and I think readers will appreciate it as much as I did. 

Werewolf at the Zoo

Title: Werewolf at the Zoo
Author: Charlie Richards
Publisher: eXtasy Books
ISBN: 978-1-55487-875-8
Genre: {M/M}, Shape-shifter, Series
Rating:  4 Nymphs
Literary Nymph Reviewer: Critter Nymph 

Travis is one of the vets at the local zoo.  He’s not surprised when he comes across the unusual every now and then but he never expects to find the man of his dreams.  Or that Rainy would turn out to be a werewolf. 

Werewolf at the Zoo was a great read and a terrific way to start a new series.  Usually the Alpha of the pack would get the first book but in Werewolf at the Zoo, the first book in the Wolves of Stoneridge, the main shifter is the pack’s accountant.  

Rainy is at the zoo looking for his brother, who has been taken by poachers.  While the concept of poachers is not a laughing matter, the fact that a shifter would find his way to a zoo is a little on the funny side.  Travis is the vet at the zoo and very much in the closet.  After seeing his parents’ reaction years ago when a friend came out, he has no desire to come out.  Travis is leery of the feelings he is developing for Rainy and what that could mean to his life.  The author does a wonderful job bringing this conflict across realistically.  The passion the two have is intense and heats up the pages.  When Travis’s parents find out, the outcome is almost predictable.   

There are many secondary characters, some who get their story told at the same time as Travis and Rainy, and others who will get later stories.  While the characters must deal with problems from outside forces, the issue of poaching is carried over to other stories. 

While this author is a new one for me, I will most definitely make an effort to look for more of her books. 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Pestilence

Title: Pestilence
Author: T.A. Chase
Publisher: Total-E-Bound Publishing
Publisher URL: www.total-e-bound.com
ISBN: 978-0-85715-701-0
Genre: {M/M} Paranormal, Series
Rating: 5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx  

Pestilence is sitting in an Amazon clearing, having his mid-day meal, when Bartholomew Winston stumbles out of the jungle and collapses into Pest’s arms.  Normally Pest would choose to ignore the ailing human, but there was something in Bart’s eyes that attracted Pest’s desire to help.  Pest discovered the months he spent curing the mortal Bart’s virus also cured Pest’s immortal soul. 

Pestilence has a provocative theme with a spiritual overtone.  The plot, which instigates a moment of thoughtful reflection of the world today, illustrates how the balance between good and evil is upset when some of mankind seeks to have supremacy over others, along with how Karma has a way of keeping track of the things you do in this life so that they will come back to you, whether the deeds are good or bad.   Pestilence is the first warning for whoever is creating the unbalance in the mortal world.  The title may imply gloom and doom, however the detailed characters have superb interactions of humor as well as exceptionally sensual intimacy scenes.  The emotional past history expressed by Pest and Bart is especially heartwarming.  T.A. Chase has produced an excellent happy ever after saga that I thoroughly enjoyed.

Master of Wrath

Title: Master of Wrath
Author: Nikki McCoy
Publisher: Total E-Bound
ISBN: 978-0-85715-638-9
Genre: {M/M/M} BDSM Fantasy Series
Rating: 3.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

Cyaan’s survived the life of a warrior for three thousand years and for the last five, he’s lived with the knowledge that he failed his missing mate Jace, a man who sacrificed himself for another. Cyann will do anything to find Jace and bring the kidnapper to justice. While searching for his missing mate, Cyann gets a shock when he meets his second mate Loken, an assassin and the son of the God of Wrath. Since Loken isn’t interested in losing his heart, it takes some talking to get him to stick around but Cyann convinces him to help in Jace’s rescue.  

Since his kidnapping, Jace’s been brutalized by his ruthless captor but he still manages to escape. He’s an emotional and physical wreck when found by Cyaan and Loken, who both want to claim him as their mate. But Jace is damaged and it will take patience to convince him he’s worthy of their love but even that might not be enough. They still have to keep Mikel, son of the God of Death, from regaining possession of Jace and Cyaan and Loken are willing to be whatever it takes to keep him safe. Anything. 

Master of Wrath is the second release in Nikki McCoy’s Keepers of the Gods series and it picks up five years later. While it’s seems odd to begin the main body of the story with just two of the main characters, it was nice allowing Cyann and Loken bonding time before they find Jace. With the dominate personalities created by the author, it seems likely the only way possible to get them together. Adding Jace was the linchpin…the point needed to focus their energy…making their wounded mate whole.  

Jace’s personality is complicated, emotional and deeply wounded. He’s a wreck who doesn’t express his true feelings and he keeps secrets to protect his mates. He’s filled with pain, fear and angst, making the middle of the book drag. What you do get during this period is that Ms. McCoy’s made Jace stronger than first imagined…in many respects stronger than his mates, I just wish the story flow was smoother to better express what was going on. Then there’s new character, Xilonen, who vacillates between being a villain and a good guy. He’s just plain confusing and I assume we’ll learn more about him in the future. 

I was bothered by the opening chapter. While well written, it starts with Loken and his twin sister. It allows us to see them interacting…their relationship, but it seems tacked on and doesn’t appear to have much to do with the rest of the book. I actually stopped reading, thinking something was wrong with the PDF file. I think it could be left off without drastically affecting the story and the needed information interjected at other points in the story. Just my opinion.  Watch for Keepers of the Night, the next release in the series.

Reader Advisory: This book contains references to violence, scenes of dubious consent, harsh language and hot M/M/M action. It is best read in sequence as part of a series.

Mountain Pride

Title:  Mountain Pride
Author:  Helena Ray
Publisher:  Siren Bookstrand
ISBN:  1-61034-747-1
Genre:  {M/F/M}, Shape-shifter, Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer:  Amazon Nymph 

Oliver and Roarke are trying to save Savage Valley, but end up running into Chelsea in the woods and recognize her as their mate.  Chelsea is there for a vacation with no intention of having a relationship, especially so soon after her divorce. 

The first book about The Pride of Savage Valley, Colorado series is about mountain lion shifters.  Mountain Pride tells about how Savage Valley and shifters came about.  I found the fact that there would only be one generation of shifters at a time different.  The fact that the oldest male would become the Alpha at age thirty and then the older generation would no longer shift, putting a new twist to a shifter society. 

I liked the fact that Chelsea slowly overcame her insecurities, as most of us don’t do that overnight.  Chelsea, Oliver and Roarke had sizzling chemistry.  The grumbling of some of the secondary characters made me laugh, as I could just see this happening.  I look forward to seeing how the author chooses to resolve the suspense story within Mountain Pride, as you will not be able to really know who the bad guy is, even though there seems to be an obvious one. I am looking forward to reading about the rest of the five families of shifters in Savage Valley.
Publishers Note: There are two different series in the Savage Valley, Colorado collection. The Pride of Savage Valley series by Helena Ray is mountain lion-shifters. Rugged Savage Valley by Edith Dubois is bear-shifters. Even though the two series take place in the same setting with crossover characters and share an external story arc, each of the series can stand alone.

Rugged Glimpse

Title:  Rugged Glimpse
Author:  Edith DuBois
Publisher:  Siren Bookstrand
ISBN:  1-61034-764-1
Genre:  {M/F/M}, Shape-shifter, Series
Rating: 4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer:  Amazon Nymph 

Because of an incident with her former boyfriend, Elena arrives in Savage Valley to try to jump start a new career.  Joseph and Caleb see her and realize she is their mate, but will have to convince her to stay. 

Rugged Glimpse is the first book in the Rugged Savage Valley, Colorado series.  This book is a little intense, emotionally, as Elena tries to start over.  The mating situation with the bear shifters is different than some stories about other shifters.  I thought the author did a beautiful job trying to explain how a bear could lose his mate before he actually claimed her.  Once Elena, Joseph and Caleb get together, things heat up. 

Land use issues are at the heart of the suspense in the story.  While everyone tries to keep Savage Valley rural and a safe haven for shifters, as well as bringing some modernization to the town, residents want to keep developers out.  This author kept me up reading most of the night with this story.  I couldn’t wait to find out how some of Elena’s issues resolved and how she would accept Joseph and Caleb, once she found out they were shifters.  I look forward to reading about the rest of the shifters in future stories. 

The publisher indicates to the reader that there are two different series within the Savage Valley, Colorado collection; I found reading this story that it references The Pride of Savage Valley, Colorado series quite a bit in this story.  In this reviewer’s opinion, a reader needs to read both series concurrently, with the first book in the Pride series being read first before reading Rugged Glimpse.  There is a lot of crossover in this story with that one. 

Publisher Note: There are two different series in the Savage Valley, Colorado collection. The Pride of Savage Valley series by Helena Ray is mountain lion-shifters. Rugged Savage Valley by Edith Dubois is bear-shifters. Each book features a different romantic trio or quartet. Even though the two series take place in the same setting with crossover characters and share an external story arc, each of the series can stand alone.

By Any Other Name

Title: By Any Other Name
Author: Tia Fielding
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
ISBN: 978-1-61372-141-4
Genre: {M/M/M} Contemporary
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx   

Andrew Beckett Jr. and his partner Thomas Williams were in the process of making muffins when they received a phone call from the head psychiatrist at Haven Institute in Boston.  Dru’s long lost best friend Skye Walker needs a temporary place to begin rebuilding his life.  Love quickly grows between the three men and a temporary guest becomes a permanent resident.  

By Any Other Name is a psychological journey to wellness story.  The intriguing plot illustrates the impact on Skye’s mind after he suffered five years of unimaginable abuse.  Regaining an emotionally normal adult life is a slow process, requiring all three men to conquer their fears.  Each chapter defines a character’s personality, showcasing their background as well as insecurities. Also featured is the almost sweet interaction between characters, along with the adjustments necessary to comfort each other.  Thom and Dru have lived together for two years; however they limit their normal show of affection for each other in front of Skye, who fears human contact.  The overall distressing, as well as particularly heartwarming, saga is an enjoyable romance with a hint of intimacy and a dash humor.   Tia Fielding’s By Any Other Name storyline centers on the gentle aspects of healing with love.

Ralston’s Way

Title: Ralston’s Way
Author: Talia Carmichael
Publisher: Total E-Bound
Publisher URL: www.total-e-bound.com
ISBN: 978-0-85715-629-7
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary Western Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

Morgan Ralston’s a man who likes being in control so when his brother hires a new office manager and cook for the ranch, he isn’t thrilled. Morgan knows there’s trouble ahead but it’s not the kind he expects.  Instead of the new manager being a problem for the ranch, he turns out to be a huge problem for Morgan’s usually tightly restrained libido. Morgan can’t stop thinking about Blayne and the only thing to do is tackle his desire like he does everything else…head on. It’s his way of handling things…the Ralston Way. 

When Blayne Dalton arrives at Morgan’s ranch he doesn’t expect to come face to face with an aggravating man with a talent for turning him inside out. It drives him crazy that the man he desires is avoiding him and sometimes he doesn’t know whether the answer is punching him or kissing him senseless. The sparks are flying but how does Blayne show a control freak cowboy he doesn’t always have to get his own way? 

Ralston’s Way is the first release in the new series Prentiss by Talia Carmichael. It’s a fun, engaging and lighthearted romance that’s a good beginning to this new entertaining series. I like these guys and I don’t mean just Blayne and Morgan. All of the characters in the story are interesting and well developed and since they’re family…brothers, a sexy horse breeding dad and friends…the interaction is just want you’d expect…they drive each other nuts.  

Morgan is strong-willed and seeing him go up against Blayne is fun. It only takes him a short time before he realizes what a good thing Blayne is and then he’s ready to jump into their relationship fully and watching him get his nose of joint with jealousy is a hoot. Then there’s our Prima Donna…Blayne, who never seems to have a hair out of place. He’s smart, sexy…and man does he have a temper. Put these two together and the sparks fly, inside the bedroom and out. 

The description of the ranch and surrounding area are realistic, making the world of a working ranch come alive and that’s just the beginning. There are lots of funny moments as the men deal with each other, which leads to a few misunderstanding and some snappy dialogue. You’ll also get some old fashioned courting, a little angst, lots of tenderness and caring, and a near tragedy.  Look for Long Hard Ride coming next.

Death Bringer

Title: Death Bringer
Author: Marteeka Karland and Shara Azod
Publisher: Changeling Press
ISBN: 978-1-60521-676-8
Genre: {M/F} Futuristic, Action Adventure, Suspense
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer:  Amethyst Nymph 

Even Average Joes needs a break from work every now and then.  As a master assassin, Death Bringer Tyr is in desperate need of some drinks and distraction.  The hole in the wall bar he’d chosen was the best place for him to go unnoticed and be left alone.  His plan might have worked if distraction hadn’t walked into the bar wearing a short skirt. 

Arienne might look out of place in the bar, but she’s a woman on a mission.  She intends to find someone to help her, no matter what method of payment she has to offer.  Running the risk of being shunned by her family was a risk she’d gladly take if it meant she would live.  Ironically, her savior is also the man sent to kill her.   

The bargain Tyr and Arienne struck up left me breathless and blushing. Those two really burn up the pages with their unbridled lovemaking.  At the beginning, I was wondering if Arienne was too tame for Tyr, but boy was I wrong. There are some unexpected twists that were far from predictable and I think they brought about a perfect conclusion to Death Bringer.  There were some moments I fantasized about jumping in to join in on some of the payback.   Karland and Azod are never shy about bringing the heat and I love the way they saw to it that justice was served.  Although this isn’t a series, I can’t help hoping to get a glimpse into the world of another hot hit man.  This is another great read from the duo that readers are going to eat up like candy.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Torem

Title: Torem
Author: Lynn Hagen 
Publisher: Siren-Bookstrand
ISBN: 1610345614
Genre: {M/M/M}, Paranormal, Series
Rating:  4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymph Reviewer: Critter Nymph 

Torem knows the construction foreman working on the pack’s new home is his mate but before he can come clean with the hunky human, Torem has to leave town.  While coming to his brother’s rescue, Torem meets his second mate, the hyped up Sidney, who has a thing for Red Bull and is keeping a secret of his own. 

Torem is the fourth story in the Zeus’s Pack series, and this one is sure to keep you laughing.  While the attraction between Dino, Torem and Sidney is page burning, these three have more than their share of issues that almost keep them apart.  For human Dino finding out that there are paranormal creatures in the world, and two just happen to be his mates, sends him running.  The man’s reaction is understandable and readers will find it easy to forgive him.  As for Sidney, he will keep his mates hopping.  His need for Red Bull cracked me up, as did his first meeting with Dino.  I was also surprised when he finally got around to shifting.    

As with each of the stories in this series, the actions of the pack’s former Alpha can still be felt and Torem’s flashbacks are the worse to date.   When Torem’s brother starts him on the path to healing, the results lead the three men to finally solidify their relationship.   

New characters are also introduced and I liked the way in which a new shifter is brought into the story. I can’t wait to see what the upcoming stories hold and hope that somewhere along the way, the pack’s old leader finally gets his just reward.

The Book of Daniel

Title: The Book of Daniel
Author: Z. A. Maxfield
Publisher: Loose Id
Publisher URL: www.loose-id.com
ISBN: 978-1-61118-438-9
Genre: {M/M} Contemporary Series
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Dragon Minx 

In the last few months, Daniel Livingston’s life has changed. He’s free of his loveless marriage and has moved to St. Nacho to be near his younger brother, Jake. It also allows him time to sample the sexual charms of the local available men, while getting physical therapy for an injury suffered during a car wreck. His plans are to experience as many men as possible, but his problem is firefighter Cameron Rooney…a man Dan can’t get off his mind.  

Cam’s an honest man and he requires the same from Dan, which is tough for a man with a history of using his glib tongue to get what he wants. Having Cam in his life turns Dan’s world upside down and makes him decide to make a confession to his ex-wife that will cost him half of everything he owns. He also has to deal with a family secret that could endanger his relationship with his brother. Then there’s the issue with his business partner that could change the landscape of St. Nacho forever if he can’t stop it. If Dan wants to prove himself to Cam and move his life in another direction, it could cost him everything. Or it could give him what he wants most. 

The Book of Daniel is the latest release in Z. A. Maxfield’s St. Nacho’s series. I’ve been a big fan of all the books but I admit, at least initially, I didn’t like Dan. He’s a complicated man and deeply flawed, which makes him completely human and not a particularly nice guy…at least on the surface. Underneath the snide remarks, strange charm and drinking is a caring and protective older brother who’s just now coming to grips with his sexuality. He’s an odd man and it takes some time before you can like him…but that again makes him realistic and believable.  

Then there’s hunky firefighter Cam. He’s a bit judgmental, and for at least half the book waxes hot and cold toward Dan which is a little confusing, but they are fun to watch, whether fighting or making love. Whichever it is…they are fiery hot.  

There are numerous secondary characters. Some are returning individuals from the wonderfully, quirky town of St. Nacho, while others are new. This expanded cast is almost too big and complicated for a book of this length. While interesting, it distracted from the romance and meant that for a big portion toward the end of the story, Dan and Cam are apart. But despite these issues, they still manage to work through their problems and Dan handles his as well, allowing them to have the happily-ever-after they’re looking for. I don’t know if there’s another St. Nacho’s book planned but I hope so.

Knox

Title: Knox
Author: Lynn Hagen 
Publisher: Siren-Bookstrand
ISBN: 1610345584
Genre: {M/M/M}, Paranormal, Series
Rating:  4.5 Nymphs
Literary Nymph Reviewer: Critter Nymph 

Sammy is finally starting to settle down in his new home town when he meets Trevor and Knox.  The little human can’t figure out why he is so attracted to the vampire and shifter, but he plans on doing everything in his power to make sure he can keep them. 

Knox is the third book in the Zeus’s Pack series.  The story centers around Sammy, who was forced out by his ex-boyfriend; Trevor who is looking for a new home after leaving his coven and Knox, one of Zeus’s warriors, who is struggling with the trauma in his past.  Each man, for various reasons, has little self-worth and therefore feels unsuitable to be anyone’s mate.  It is those same reasons that make each of these men perfect for each other.  The men’s insecurities come through realistically and the effect they have on the relationship, which already has many stumbling blocks, are believable.  When the men finally do get together, watch out as the chemistry between them is hot and Sammy, who is generally on the shy side, really lets loose when the three get together.  The men not only have to face the reactions of some of Knox’s pack mates once they realize that a vampire has joined their ranks, but they must also handle the actions of Trevor’s former coven members.  

As with all of Ms. Hagen’s stories, Knox is full of action and passion.  The secondary characters, many readers have already met, help fill out the story.  The three Asian men who have found sanctuary with Zeus’s pack will cause more than a few chuckles.  Look out for a few new twists to the series that are sure to keep the reader wondering what will happen next. 

Psychic Moon

Title: Psychic Moon
Author: M.D. Grimm
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
ISBN: 978-1-61372-116-2
Genre: {M/M} Shape-Shifter
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Chocolate Minx   

Humane officer for the Seattle Pet Rescue Center, Derek Williams spends much of his workday being angry regarding the abusive treatment people inflict upon their pets.  Wolf-shifter Derek does not like humans.  The only exception in Derek’s opinion is the center’s human veterinarian Brian O’Donogue, the man Derek has desired for two years. 

Psychic Moon is a romance featuring an animal rights theme.  The plot highlights the suffering of pets from owners’ neglect, along with the unsung heroes that work tirelessly to save as many animals as they can. The characters are convincing.  Derek comes from a background of a sheltered life of harmony within the pack.  His leaving home was the normal path of young adults seeking employment, while still remaining closely attached to his family.  Derek knew he could depend on his family if he ever needed help.  This trust was demonstrated when Derek and Brian were attacked by a demented wolf-shifter and Derek’s father promptly sent a trained rescuer.   

Brian did not have family support because of his sexuality, nevertheless by focusing on doing a job that he loved, Brian enjoyed his life.  Derek and Brian are especially attuned to each other.  Brian is the only person who has the ability to calm Derek, plus they have the same goals in common.  M.D. Grimm’s Psychic Moon is an exceptionally enjoyable heartwarming saga, interwoven with a touch of drama, humor as well as a few sensual intimate scenes.