Tag Archives: vampires

Review of The Order of the Dragon, by Scerina Elizabeth

I received an Audible code for a copy of Scerina’s Elizabeth‘s The Order of the Dragon.

Description from Goodreads:
“What if all the stories you heard about the infamous monster name Dracula were all lies? What if there was another side to the story that no one even knew of, a side where he was not a monster but in fact a savior? What if he was a vampire who had a soul? What if the monster had a heart and yearned to be loved? The story am about to tell, is the real story of Vlad Tepes and how he came to be this infamous so-called monster called “Dracula”, that everyone most feared. And I promise once am finish with this story, you will view him in a whole new light with a whole new respect and love. ” ~ Mina Murray ~

How far would you go to find a cure for an illness that could take your life at any moment that was incurable?

Would you sell your soul to the very Devil himself to prolong your precious life?

And at what cost are you willing to pay for such a priceless gift?

A secret society of the very wealthy and powerful of London, England who are terminally ill and would do just about ANYTHING for a cure for their illness. Including selling their soul to the very Devil himself, Dracula.

This is a version of the classic horror tale of Dracula but with a different twist. Retold with a different perspective on mortality and immortality.

What path are you willing to take when it comes to your mortality and soul? The right path or the wrong path. And would the choice ultimately be worth it in the end.

Review:
Bad, just really really BAD!

Please, authors, if you want to write in modern vernacular just go ahead and write in modern times. It DOES NOT WORK to write modern dialogue and narration in the 1800s! And even if that wasn’t true, the writing here is just sloppy. There are a ton of repeat words. Things like the word coffin being used three times in the same paragraph. The sex scenes are so cringe-worthy I fast-forwarded through them. And the plot is super inconsistent. There’s a twist at the end that just doesn’t work; it so contradicts everything up to that point. The audiobook narration isn’t all that great either, though it does improve as the book goes along. If I hadn’t been listening to it in order to get through folding a GIANT pile of laundry I’d have DNFed this for sure.

Review of Awakened (The Oracle Chronicles #1), by Moni Boyce

I picked up a copy of Moni Boyce‘s Awakened as a freebie on Amazon.

Description from Goodreads:

Secret lineage, a ruthless vampire, and forbidden love.

Willow Stevens dreams of stardom are eclipsed by the real nightmares of a sinister man haunting her dreams. Unbeknownst to her, Eli Walker, her hot but snobbish co-worker, may know the reason nightmares plague her, but their history shows he is more prone to reject her, than help her.

Then Willow passes out at work only to wake in Eli’s apartment. There she has her chance to learn more about her heritage. But, knowing why the vampire king stalks her doesn’t make the nightmares disappear. If anything, they become more real as she now faces off against a slew of creatures she’d always believed were myth.

That Eli is one of those creatures is just her luck. Secret witch guild or not, his natural ways are casting spells her heart can’t escape. As a Protector his only focus should be her safety. Anything else is forbidden. He plans to stay in task, but some women break a man, or tempt him to break the rules.

Can Eli keep Willow alive and safe from the vampires long enough for her to grow her own powers or will both cast aside rules for a reckless passion that will only lead to danger?

Review:

Not very good, not totally horrendous, but not great either. The book has an interesting world and premise and an absolutely gorgeous cover, but it needs more editing, the writing is amateurish at times, and the transitions are often clunky. Plus, I had some serious suspension of disbelief issues with the plot and I found both Willow and Eli unlikable. She’s 26 and he’s even older, but they both act like children, and she’s especially self-centered, bratty, and easily manipulated.

As for the problem being able to suspend belief, which is something exceptionally hard for a book to overcome, it was two-fold. One, the book goes on and on about how important it is for her to learn to defend herself. So, it made no sense to me that the Protectors had followed her years and years instead of teaching her to defend herself until it’s basically too late. It’s not like they didn’t know there was a threat.

Secondly, all of the angst around the romance subplot could have and (and IMO should have) been completely bypassed if someone had simply told Willow that Protectors are forbidden from having relationships with Oracles. I don’t mean this as telling the author how to write her book, simply that as a reader I couldn’t understand why the characters were creating all the unneeded drama and hurt when it would make a million times more sense than the BS lies Eli rolls out for her

Lastly, it’s also the only book I’ve ever read with a warning before the epilogue like this:

If you plan to continue with this series, there’s an epilogue…but I suggest you stop here if you don’t like cliffhangers and don’t plan to continue. Thanks for reading!

It seems pointless because, even if you don’t read the epilogue (which I didn’t since I have no intention of continuing the series), the book ends with Willow injured, and both she and Eli unconscious. So, it’s already a cliffhanger.

All in all, I’m sorry to say the book just wasn’t a winner for me.

Review of the Sever the Crown series, by Mysti Parker & Lindsey R. Loucks

I received an Audible code for a copy of Emergence (book one) and then since I enjoyed it, I borrowed the compilation through Amazon Prime.


Description from Amazon:

 Start with Book One: Emergence

One woman. Five men. Together, they’ll sever the crown – or maybe the head that wears it.

Wren has a dark obsession—to find her mother’s murderers before they find her. Every new singing gig brings her closer to crossing their names from her list.

When a detective shows up with a new lead, she jumps at the chance with fangs bared. But to get the information they need, they’ll have to bust someone out of jail.

Sure. No problem. 

Ashe has just been framed for high crimes against the Southern Vampire Clan—but he’s not exactly innocent either.

While waiting for his fate, a five-pointed star tattoo appears on his wrist, similar to the tattoo of a stunning platinum-haired vampire. The sudden attraction between them is undeniable. Better yet, she’s just offered to free him. 

Sounds like a great deal. So what’s the catch?

Turns out, as their enemies close in, the catch could very well be their lives.

◆ Book Two: Defiance Everyone knows it’s not a true vampire cult party until someone gets staked.

Book Three: Obsession – Wren’s world has caught fire. But she’ll be damned if she lets it burn.

Book Four: Relentless – Wren’s fourth mate just might be the death of her…that is if the world doesn’t end first.

Book Five: Ascension – 3…2…1…It’s a race against time in an epic war for the throne. Queen versus queen.


Reviews:

I wrote reviews of these books as I went. I had more opinions at the finish of some than others. But overall, I liked the series but found myself growing bored by the end. I feel like the authors kept themselves constrained in the beginning, but by the last book, things were getting sloppy.

Emergence (Sever the Crown, #1)

I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this. It’s not particularly deep and I was expecting the heroine to meet all of her mates here, but it looks like it will be one per book. Despite that, I laughed several times, thought the writing sharp, and I liked the characters. Plus, the narrator did an excellent job, which always contributes. I’ve borrowed the rest of the series through Amazon Prime now. We’ll see if I like them as much when reading them, instead of listening.

Defiance (Sever the Crown, #2)

I didn’t dislike this, but I didn’t like it as much as the first. With two mates located, the Wren worship is just getting to be a little too much for me. I’m pleased to say that, despite being a reverse harem story, the book isn’t bogged down in too much sex, and the sex scenes aren’t overly long. I’m moving on to book three. We’ll see how things go from there.

Obsession (Sever the Crown #3)

I gotta admit I’m getting a bit bored with this series now. Contradictorily, it starting to feel like too much of the same (basically how amazing Wren is) and like the authors got bored with the confines of their own world and blew it open. In the previous books, we only had humans and vampires. Suddenly, here in this book, we have vampires, and witches, and celestials (aka angels and demons), lion, wolf and boar shifters, banshees, and portals through time. This felt like a huge departure from what previous books had lead readers to believe were the limits of the world.

Additionally, Wren now has three male mates, which I have no problem with. But I find it really unimaginative that there is no overlap. She gives one mate at time attention, there is no jealousy but there also isn’t any crossover. Not in the sense of having more than one in bed at a time or with any of the males feeling affection for one another. Somehow it gives a sense of monogamy, even in the Polyandrous relationship. Which might work if they weren’t all together all the time.

Also worth noting is that these books do not stand alone and this one ends on a particularly precipitous cliffhanger.

Despite saying all of that, I’m still moving on to book four. Honestly, I’ll read the whole series just to see if Zac finally gets turned and to be a mate. (I’m pretty sure he will and even think I know how that will come about, but I want to see it.)

Relentless (Sever the Crown #4)

Book four of five in a series in which the books do not stand on their own. So, it starts in the middle of the story and ends on a cliffhanger. It’s OK, but the whole series has grown stale, each book just seems to be more of the same. It’s not bad, it’s just not adding anything particularly fresh with each new installment.

Ascension (Sever the Crown #5)

I was really glad to see the fifth mate came about as I thought he would (and was who I thought). But I was so ready for this series to be finished by the time I reached the end. I felt like it just went on for too long. All five mates were sweet, but having 5 men to satisfy got repetitive. Especially since this is medium-burn (that’s a quote from one of the blurbs), so most of the sex was somewhat abortive and didn’t vary far from the most basic.

Then there was the final showdown with the villains. They’re literally caricatures. I mean every time the evil mates entered a scene they came in quoting ridiculous lines, even. There is no feeling of the rest of the vampire clan(s) (or humanity, for that matter). It all felt very surface level.

I know I’ve just been complaining. That’s my frustration coming through. But I did read five books without DNFing any of them, so I obviously didn’t hate it. The writing is still perfectly readable and I did like the characters, etc.