Tag Archives: demons

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Book Review: The Brother’s Curse, by Christine M. Germain

I accepted a review copy of Christine M. Germain‘s The Brother’s Curse through R & R Tours during it’s book tour. It was also featured over on Sadie’s Spotlight. You can hop over there for author information and a giveaway.

Christine Germain ebook

A year after the brutal death of her parents, Crystal Francois moves back home to the eerie small town of Lakeview Falls. When one of her neighbors goes away abruptly leaving his home to be watched by a young man named Jason Warwick, Crystal finds herself falling for him instantly because of his charming ways and dashing good looks.

Two weeks before her 25th birthday, she receives a rare antique purple amethyst stone necklace that is left for her by her late mother; A necklace with a deadly past and horrible consequences when being worn. She finds out that wearing the necklace causes her and her friends to be the target for two sadistic tyrannical evil 18th-century old Shapeshifter brothers who will not stop till they find her and retrieve the chariot stone necklace that holds their father and 24 demonic Shapeshifters captive.

When young men from town go missing, and bodies showing up eaten or skinned alive. Lakeview Falls is on high alert. It doesn’t take long for Crystal to discover that the new guy in town isn’t who he claims to be or if he is even human.

my review

It brings me no joy to give a book a poor review, especially a book by a new author. And I’ll say up from that this book has many good reviews. I appear to be in the minority here. But the simple fact of the matter is that I do not think that this book was ready for publication. I think it has an interesting premise and cast of characters, but it needed to pass through the hands of both a copy and developmental editor before publication.

What’s more, while I very much appreciated the diversity in the cast, there is some stereotyping going on and—personal opinion here—I’d have rethought the present tense narrative. Put simply, the book is rough and to try to name all the ways would feel like an attack. So, I’m going to leave it at ‘the book needed significantly more editing than it appears to have received.’

However, I do want to reiterate that I think it has an interesting kernel of an idea and I appreciate that it’s the men who are largely the nameless victims. That might seem an odd thing to comment on. But if you really stop and think about all the books you’ve read, we consistently culturally paint women in the victim role. And, unless you are making a concerted effort to avoid it, that shows in the media we all consume. I appreciate that Germain flipped the tables here.

Lastly, as just an FYI, this is dually listed under the paranormal and horror genres. I would call this much more horror than paranormal.

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Other Reviews:

The Brother’s Curse

 

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Book Review: Monster Inside, by River Starr

River Starr‘s Monster Inside was featured over on Sadie’s Spotlight and I was lucky enough to win an e-copy of it.
monster inside cover

Sometimes the most enchanting monsters are the ones you can’t see, only feel…

I am a survivor. For the past ten years, I’ve been forced to give every part of me to sinister vampires in a feeding community. But when I touched an ancient book and recited a spell out of sheer desperation and zero arcane knowledge, a dark entity came to me. Rescued me. Mrak helped me escape.

I have no idea what I’ve gotten myself into. But Mrak has been at my side for the last year—well, inside me, anchored to my existence and lovingly tender with his ethereal touches. It’s not quite possession, not quite a haunting. But it’s real, it’s sexy as hell, and he’s mine. Or I’m his. Either way, we’re now in this life together.

Mrak is distracting, seductive, and powerful, but he’s also keeping a secret. One that’s now put me in immense danger despite his claims he’ll do anything to protect me. Because the cops have come calling. Bodies have turned up. And despite his reassurances, I’m starting to wonder if Mrak has a hidden agenda that he’s somehow kept secret from the inside.

My life might be in my monster’s debt. My body might be his for pleasure. But my future is mine no matter how much he wants and uses my body. I’m no longer the weak woman he saved from a vampire lord, and it’s time to take my body—and my life—back.

my review

Soooo, this was readable and had an interesting idea but honestly wasn’t very well executed. The beginning is hella repetitive. Like the author couldn’t figure out how to show us things so they just kept telling us. The heroine ran around and did things. However, it never felt anything but random, because the author didn’t really take the time to anchor the plot. The entirety of the relationship building was skipped in a full year jump in time. (And come on, learning to live with a demon INSIDE YOU should have been pivotal to the story!) So, I held absolutely no investment in it. There wasn’t any world-building to speak of. So, I didn’t really know what the limits of possibilities were, etc. All in all, I was initially interested but not impressed enough to bother continuing the series.monster inside photo


Other Reviews:

Blog Tour — Review: Monster Inside by River Starr

 

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Book Review: Kiss of Darkness, by Taylor Aston White

I picked up a review copy of Taylor Aston White‘s Kiss of Darkness through Netgalley. It was also featured over on Sadie’s Spotlight. You can hop over for an excerpt.

kiss of darkness cover

He despises her… almost as much as his beast craves her.

Kyra’s seen and survived the worst things imaginable, all because of the magic she was born with. Trapped by her secret, she has no choice but to serve Councilman Gallagher or risk everything she has tried so hard to build. Because despite black magic being banned, her very survival depends on it.

When she’s commanded to summon a Daemon, a Breed notorious for their corruption and brutality, she’s torn between keeping her secret and doing the right thing.

Xander’s hate for black witches was notorious, but nothing frustrated him more than the one witch that brings trouble with a capital T. With dark amber eyes, and a controlled strength that fascinated his beast – the monster he’s cursed to share a soul – Xander will do anything to push her away.

So when he’s forced into protecting her, he must put aside his prejudice and ignore his growing desire that’s an insult to his past.

Because he’s had an entire childhood to remember why you can’t trust black witches.

And he definitely can’t trust Kyra Farzan.

my review

This was fine, not exceptional in any way, but entertaining enough. Before I get into any specifics I have to have one major gripe, and it’s one I feel like I’m making constantly.

This book is very clearly labeled Book 1 of the Curse of the Guardians series. That’s why I chose to read it. However, I made it about 20% in and put it aside, went over to Goodreads, and read the blurbs of the author’s other books to find out what Curse of the Guardians is a spin-off of. Because at that point, I was 100% sure that Kiss of Darkness is one. The characters had met previously, previous events are referenced, the world-building was sketchy (as if I was meant to already know it), there was a strong couple that was clearly from another story-line, there were even internal jokes between characters that the reader was obviously meant to understand.

Point blank, no argument, if I can tell a book is a spin-off because I can feel previous books are missing, the book does not stand alone well enough to be a new series. And in those scenarios I kiss of darkness photocall the ‘book 1’ label a lie. I am super tired of having this happen.

OK, that’s my big gripe. Outside of that, the book is fine. I liked that Kyra is strong, even as she’s put in impossible situations. I never really took to Xander though. He was just kind of a bland, generic paranormal romance hero. But the writing is easily readable. And while there wasn’t anything that stood out as stellar in the plot, it wasn’t all out bad either.


Other Reviews:

Archaeolibrarian: Kiss of Darkness

Book Him Danno: Kiss of Darkness