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Review: Damnable Grace (Hades Hangmen #5) by Tillie Cole

Friday, April 28


My rating:
3 Stars… all for the Psycho Trio ♥

Synopsis:

AK of my beloved Psycho Trio gets his time in the limelight in this one. The Hades Hangmen rescue Phebe (Delilah's sister) from the Aryan Brotherhood, and AK takes responsibility for getting her clean and healthy. A whole lot of darkness and drama unfolds.

What I loved:

AK had an amazing backstory. I loved getting to know him, and every page of this book that he featured on was like crack to my warped and twisted heart. Loved him!
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Any book that mentions Flame, Viking and AK has my heart. These 3 are probably my favourite friends in any series I've ever read in my life. I love their loyalty to each other. For me, they carried this story, and made me want a HEA for Viking and to read Flame's story all over again.

Zane, Dev and Tina. As sad as their story was, I loved it, and I love the way Tillie Cole played it all out for us. Heartbreaking, beautiful, and just overall kick-me-in-the-balls painful.

The vengeance. Oh, the delicious, violent, bloodthirsty vengeance was strong in this one. Loved everything about Flame getting unleashed on the skinheads, AK ripping the insurgents apart, and just the general underlying evil that is this beautiful group of men.

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Flame. Not to harp on, but he's my favourite. I love him so hard it would be psychotic if he was real. The chapters written from his POV were amazing. And the part where Maddie draws the picture of them? Oh my God, I want that story. I would buy that story a bazillion times over.

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What I didn’t love:
Phebe. I disliked her so much that if the rest of the characters I love were not mentioned in this story, I would have DNF'd. I didn't like anything about her. On top of everything else I don't like about her...
SPOILER BELOW
 AK saves her life twice, detoxes her twice, and she thanks him first by stealing his booze and trying to fuck his friends, then by running away and getting Grace kidnapped, then by OD'ing while he's trying to save Saphira.
SPOILER ABOVE
Man, fuck that guy.

The other thing I didn't like was the graphic description of rape, paedophilia and child abuse. This book, I felt, was more graphic about that stuff than any of the others had been, and it was too much for me. I tapped out so many times I wasn't sure if I'd actually finish the book.

Overall…

1 star each out of loyalty to the Psycho Trio but I didn't like the story outside of them. If you're good with this level of darkness though, Ms Cole is an excellent writer.

Review: Twist (Dive Bar #2) by Kylie Scott

Wednesday, April 26
My rating: 
4 Stars…1/2

Synopsis:

When his younger brother loses interest in online dating, hot, bearded, bartender extraordinaire, Joe Collins, only intends to log into his account and shut it down. Until he reads about her.

Alex Parks is funny, friendly, and pretty much everything he's been looking for in a woman. And in no time at all they're emailing up a storm, telling each other their deepest darkest secrets... apart from the one that really matters.

And when it comes to love, serving it straight up works better than with a twist.

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What I loved:

No insta-lust here, people! Between Alex and Joe, it's actually kind of the opposite, and I really enjoyed that. I like my characters working for their HEA, and I love slow burn chemistry, and Ms Scott writes those things so well.
Quote…Lumbersexuals were clearly the worst. Truth was, I'd never been especially into beards. At best, I'd been indifferent.
Now, however, I outright despised them.
Horrible, hairy frames for lying lips and duplicitous tongues, that's what they were. Loathsome whiskery bastards.
Burn them all in a fire.
I love a character driven story, and this was so that. I fell in love with Joe right alongside Alex.

Love Valerie, and her whole backstory. Love her loyalty to Alex, and Alex's loyalty to her. They were great friends, and I loved that.

Joe was adorable. He was so used to being the good guy, so he didn't cope so well with being the villain in this story. He did everything he could to make Alex forgive him, and I love me some good grovel. It's a thin line, too. I want good grovel, but too much and he becomes the victim and turns me against the heroine. Ms Scott dances the line well, and coupled with the way Joe is upfront and honest about everything else, it totally worked.
Quote…What now? Have you gone back to wanting nothing to do with me? Should I leave the key and get out? Do you hate me again? Have you already booked a flight home? Lay it on me. What happens next?"
See? He's so upfront about his thoughts. ♥

I really like how Ms Scott words things for us when we're inside Alex's head. I don't know how to describe it other than:
Quote…The tension in the room, I could have cut it and served it as cake. Shitty cake, but just the same.
Quote…This was what happened when my mouth started moving. The most unwise shit came out.
Alex was so cool! As a heroine, she's totally a 5 Stars…

What I didn’t love:

I wasn't so into the peripheral characters, and I didn't like the shit Joe pulled near the end.
Also, I didn't like that Alex slunk away like a slinking-away thing when she'd been so brave with him up until then. So 1/2 star off for that.

Overall…

Heroine: 5 Stars…
Hero:4 Stars…
Plot:  4 Stars…
Smut: 5 Stars… 
(Yeah, the smoking hot factor was high in this one!)

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Review: A Lady's Code of Misconduct (Rules for the Reckless #5) by Meredith Duran


My rating:
5 Stars…

Now I have a new author to stalk!

Synopsis:

A DEAL WITH THE DEVIL...
Trapped in the countryside, facing an unwanted marriage and the theft of her fortune, Jane Mason is done behaving nicely. To win her freedom, she’ll strike a deal with the most dangerous man she knows—a rising star in politics, whose dark good looks mask an even darker heart.

...NEVER GOES TO PLAN.
The bitter past has taught Crispin Burke to trust no one. He’ll gladly help a lovely young heiress, provided she pays a price. Yet when a single mistake shatters his life, it is Jane who holds the key to his salvation. And in a world that no longer makes sense, Crispin slowly realizes that she may be the only thing worth fighting for...

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What I loved:

Miss Jane Mason kicks ass. She's an amazing, resilient, super clever woman and I loved how she dealt with her uncle, Crispin, all Crispin's cronies - she was awesome! Since the loss of her family she has had to hide her light away, but she never let it fizzle out and I adored that so so much.

Quote…To live, day after day, as a shadow - to speak and be ignored, as though one's words made no sound.

I hated her uncle and aunt so much for making Jane feel so small.

Quote…She went on her tiptoes and smashed her mouth against his.
Astonishment felt so novel. It held him still as she rubbed her mouth against his. She bit his lip, then pushed her tongue into his mouth. Echoing what he had done to her. She mimicked his kiss so expertly that she turned it into mockery. Mockery of him.
He wrested free.
"Forgive me," she said breathlessly. "I just wanted to see how villainy was done. Child's play, it seems!"
Ha! Take that, Crispin, you twat.

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I also really enjoyed the whole story - the adventure, the intrigue, the mystery.

Meredith Duran is a new discovery for me. I read a great review of this book from a friend (yay for bookfriends!!) and thought huh. I feel I've been missing out. and now I know for sure that I was! Ms Duran paints such a colourful picture with her words - the story flowed well and the tempo was perfect, and I LOL'd so many times sitting inside Ms Mason's head. Loved it!

Quote…He shifted, and she saw the water lick at his navel. The mirror was not long enough to capture anything below his waist. A pity.

Crispin! Old Crispin, new Crispin, they were both everything I love in a regency hero - strong, sexy, and a little bit sensitive deep down.

What I didn’t love:

At times I felt like Jane was being petty. She was so afraid of being caught out that she spent a lot of time hurting Crispin when he didn't deserve it. She rained on his parade a little bit, too, which pissed me off. But she was aware that she was doing it, so I liked that we didn't have to dwell on her bitchiness for too long.

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Overall…

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Review: Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie

Monday, April 24


My rating:
5 Stars…
Quote…And I've kissed you, and I have to tell you, your mouth is a miracle."
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 Synopsis: 

Minerva Dobbs knows that happily-ever-after is a fairy tale, especially with a man who asked her to dinner to win a bet. Even if he is gorgeous and successful Calvin Morrisey. Cal knows commitment is impossible, especially with a woman as cranky as Min Dobbs. Even if she does wear great shoes and keeps him on his toes. When they say good-bye at the end of their evening, they cut their losses and agree never to see each other again. But Fate has other plans, and it's not long before Min and Cal meet again. Soon, they're dealing with a jealous ex-boyfriend, Krispy Kreme donuts, a determined psychologist, chaos theory, a freakishly intelligent cat, Chicken Marsala, and more risky propositions than either of them ever dreamed of. Including the biggest gamble of all—true love.

 What I loved:  

Ms Crusie is an awesome writer. Her characters are deep, and witty, and multi-faceted, and clever. Even the dumb ones, like Cal's friends, are lovably dumb. And the bitchy ones, like Cynthie, are bitchy for a reason. I loved how Ms Crusie draws me into her stories and makes me care about everyone. She's amazing. And also super funny.
Quote…Some things are supposed to be made with butter. You're one of them."
Min. If you think she sounds boring and plain and frumpy in the synopsis, you're wrong. Well, she's frumpy, a little overweight, a lot plain, but that's not even a blip on the radar of all that she is. She's got so much going on for her it's unreal. She's strong, courageous, protective, funny, a little bit prickly, a lot loyal, and kind. I mean, she's not kind to Cal for ages, but I didn't care about that too much.
Quote…The Butterfly Effect, he remembered that. The idea that a butterfly flapping it's wings in Hong Kong could cause a hurricane ten years later in Florida or prevent a tornado ten years later in Texas, take your pick because it was unpredictable.
That was Min; she'd looked harmless that first night, and then she flapped her wings two weeks ago and now he was a mess. She was a goddamn stealth butterfly.
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Quote…Can't he have one?" Min smiled at Harry as he drew closer, her face soft and kind, and Cal and Harry both blinked at her for a moment because she was so pretty.
All the peripheral characters - Cal's young nephew, Harry, and the feral cat, especially.
Quote…Because you could come to my game," Harry said, showing an ability to focus that was much like his uncle's. "It's at ten o'clock in the morning. And we could have a doughnut."
"Well," Min said, taken aback.
Harry breathed into the phone again. He sounded like Darth Vader, only smaller.
Gah, I love that kid!

 What I didn’t love: 

So - lying and miscommunication are part of the plot here, which is never usually a great start for me. But if you can look past that, and I could, this story is so beautiful. And so fun! I loved everything about our couple here, and I'd read this one a million times over. 

Overall… 

If it's not a 5, it's a 4.99999 because damn I love these characters. 
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