Working Stiff (Early Review)

, by Kt Clapsadl

Working Stiff by Rachel Caine
Revivalist #1


Bryn Davis knows working at Fairview Mortuary isn't the most glamorous career choice, but at least it offers stable employment- until she discovers her bosses using a drug that resurrects the clientele.. as part of an extortion racket. Now Bryn faces being terminated (literally) with extreme prejudice.

With the assistance of corporate double agent Patrick McCallister, Bryn has a chance to take down the bigger problem- pharmaceutical company Pharmadene, which treats death as the ultimate corporate loyalty program. She'd better do it fast before she becomes a zombie slave- a real working stiff.

She'd be better off dead..


Bryn Davis knows being a funeral director won't be a very glamorous job, but it's a steady paycheck and she doesn't really mind death, or more accurately corpses. She's very happy to be starting her new job at Fairview Mortuary, but all that changes when she learns things aren't as cut and dry as they seemed. There's an extortion ring going on behind closed doors with deadly consequences. She teams up with Patrick McCallister to try and destroy the drug company behind it all, but things get a little tricky as she also needs them to survive. Bryn will have to avoid being sucked down the rabbit hold too far or she will lose more than her life, or unlife as it were.

With Bryn's military background, and her nonchalance around corpses, I had assumed that she would just be another typical hard case urban fantasy heroine. So many of them are overly tough and have a laundry list of skills that sometimes seem to stretch the believable. I was very happy to find that my initial assumption about Bryn was very wrong. While she does has an amazing inner strength, she also isn't afraid to show emotion. You can really feel just how much everything effects her, and that sucked me right into caring for her plight. Now the other thing that make Bryn such an amazing character is that while she did have her breakdowns when things just got to be too much to bear, she never once let the situation get the best of her. She would cry it out and then "keep on trucking" as they say. The sheer determination it took to keep going was nothing short of admirable and I was rooting very hard for her every step of the way.

The world behind Working Stiff was truly spellbinding, yet also quite terrifying. With everything centered around the extreme corporate corruption, it makes you wonder how much of the events in the book parallel things that could happen in real life. The resurrection drug may be a little far fetched in our reality, but if you just picture some other "miracle" drug in place of it, I imagine things could really get that deadly in the end as everyone scrambles to control it. However, putting the corruption aspect aside, what truly makes Working Stiff such an incredible read is the depth of emotion in the characters. Somehow they are still able to form real connections, despite the extreme paranoia and lack of trust. What should have been survival of the fittest, with an every man for themselves mentality, became shaky alliances and then steadily into something a little more. By choosing to trust one another in the unbearable situations, they proved their humanity and truly solidified my attachment.

Working Stiff took off with a bang and never once slowed down. Typically a book takes a little while to really gain the reader's interest and attachment to the characters, but in Working Stiff, I found myself captivated from almost the very start. There was plenty of action, with even the slower parts being full of danger, suspense and paranoia. I can honestly say that I have never read anything quite like this book, but I absolutely loved it. In fact, Working Stiff may just be Rachel Caine's best work yet, and trust me that is saying something. As soon as I finished it I was already looking for more, and I simply cannot wait to see what happens next. If you are looking for a fast paced read full of action and danger to keep you more than entertained, the Working Stiff is perfect for you.

(Received copy from publisher)

Rating:






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Working Stiff: A Revivalist Novel

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Waiting on Wednesday (53)

, by Kt Clapsadl



Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights an upcoming release we are greatly anticipating.

My pick this week:

Working Stiff -Revivalist #1
by Rachel Caine
Publication Date: August 2nd, 2011

A brand new adventure from the award-winning, New York Times and USA Today bestselling Rachel Caine, author of the Morganville Vampires and Weather Warden series ...

Bryn Davis is new on the job as a funeral director, but even she knows that once you’re dead, you ought to stay that way. But Fairview Mortuary has a hidden backroom business: reviving the dead for profit, at extortionate rates.

Finding out may cost Bryn more than her life ... it may just take away her death, too.

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Another Kind of Dead (Early Review)

, by Kt Clapsadl

Another Kind of Dead by Kelly Meding
Dreg City #3

She can heal her own wounds. She can nail a monster to a wall. But there’s one danger Evangeline Stone never saw coming.

Been there. Done that. Evy Stone is a former Dreg Bounty Hunter who died and came back to life with some extraordinary powers. Now all but five people in the world think she is dead again, this time for good—immolated in a factory fire set specifically for her. Evy and Wyatt, her partner/lover/friend, can no longer trust their former allies, or even the highest echelons of the Triads—the army of fighters holding back from an unsuspecting public a tide of quarreling, otherworldly creatures—they can trust only each other. Because when the Triads raided a macabre, monster-filled lab of science experiments and hauled away the remnants, they failed to capture their creator: a brilliant, vampire-obsessed scientist with a wealth of powerful, anti-Dreg weaponry to trade for what he desires most of all—Evy Stone: alive and well, and the key to his ultimate experiment in mad science.

The sheer amount of horrors Evy has survived is amazing. That total stepped up to an incredible amount by the end of Another Kind of Dead. I've read many series where the main character is put through hell and back, but never in such a short amount of time as Evy has had. How she has the willpower to keep dragging her bleeding and broken body into fight after fight without rest is simply beyond me. Yes, she has supernatural healing powers, but they are no where near instantaneous, and she still feels the full pain of every injury, and they do nothing to help her mental stability. Those healing capabilities get tested to their ultimate limit in Another Kind of Dead. If you thought Evy had suffered before, you really haven't seen anything yet.

Evy Stone, now in hiding since she died and came back with some extra abilities, then almost died again. Since almost everyone thought the second death was real, she's decided to lay low. Of course that isn't the easiest thing for Evy as she is a trouble magnet. This time it's a crazy scientist who is on a path of vengeance, determined to stop vampirism at all costs. Right now his obsession is Evy as she may hold the key to his illustrious cure. But, just because he wants her alive, doesn't mean her friends are safe as he will do anything he can to get his hands on her. Evy knows she must do everything she can to keep the ones she loves safe, even if it means the ultimate sacrifice.

I love the dynamic between Evy and Wyatt. Their love for one another is so incredibly strong, yet so very fragile as well. They need each other more than anything, yet neither one seems to know what to do with that fact. At times the progression has felt gratingly slow, but then I force myself to take a step back to realize that while this may be the third book, at the start, only about two weeks has passed. So, when you consider everything that has happened to them as obstacles to their relationship, it is a wonder they stand a chance at all. I think that more than anything shows just how much they belong together. The brevity of their time together made everything seem so much precious and sweet, so I fell even harder for the two as a couple. I know this is a wish with very slim odds, but I really hope they get a little more time together before the next crisis hits, as they have more than earned it.

Like its predecessors, Another Kind of Dead is one big roller coaster ride from start to finish. It is so full of loops and turns that barely give the characters (and readers) a chance to take a breath. You won't find any slackers here, just a set of characters determined to stand up for what is right no matter the personal cost. I was on the edge of my seat until the very last word, and while there wasn't a cliffhanger ending, there was still more than plenty things left open to make me more than a little desperate to get my hands on the next installment. My hat goes off to Kelly Meding for another great installment in the Dreg City Series. You won't want to miss this!

(Received a copy from the publisher)

Rating:





Pre-Order from Amazon:
Another Kind of Dead

Other Reviews:
Previous Books:
  1. Three Days to Dead
  2. As Lie the Dead
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It's Monday! What are you reading (53)

, by Kt Clapsadl






It's Monday! What Are You Reading, hosted by Book Journey, is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.


Here's what I read this past week:



Forever (Wolves of Mercy Falls, Book 3)Dead Reckoning (Sookie Stackhouse, Book 11)Misfit


Forever by Maggie Stiefvater (Review)
Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris (Review)
Misfit by Jon Skovron (Early Review)


First up this was Forever by Maggie Stiefvater. I LOVED Shiver and then was a little disappointed in Linger. I still had high hopes for Forever based on how great Shiver was. Unfortunately it just fell flat for me. If it hadn't of been for Cole and Isabel, I'm not really sure the book would have been much of anything at all. I realize some may disagree with me, but Forever just left a bitter taste in my mouth. Things would have been more satisfying if they had been stopped at Shiver.

Next was Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris. Unfortunately this book was another disappointment for the week. There really wasn't any focus and everything was just sort of muddled together. For the first time, I'm actually glad a series is going to be ending because I am starting to think that Sookie's shelf life has expired. I miss the passion and danger from the earlier books.

Finally I read Misfit by Jon Skovron. This was actually a pretty decent read. While I had a few complaints about it that you can see in my review, I did enjoy reading it. I look forward to seeing what happens in the next installment. At least I think there will be one based on how things ended. I hope so.

My Upcoming List:

Another Kind of Dead by Kelly Meding (Early Review)
Ward Against Death by Melanie Card (Early Review)
Working Stiff by Rachel Caine (Early Review)

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Misfit (Early Review)

, by Kt Clapsadl

Misfit by JonSkovron

Jael Thompson has never really fit in. She’s changed schools too many times to count. The only family she’s ever known is her father, a bitter ex-priest who never lets her date and insists she attend the strictest Catholic school in Seattle. And her mother—well, she was a five thousand year old demon. That doesn’t exactly help.

But on her sixteenth birthday, her father gives her a present that brings about some unexpected changes. Some of the changes, like strange and wonderful powers and the cute skater boy with a knack for science, are awesome. But others, like the homicidal demon seeking revenge on her family? Not so much.

Steeped in mythology, this is an epic tale of a heroine who balances old world with new, science with magic, and the terrifying depths of the underworld with the ordinary halls of high school.


Jael's always been different and she carries a terrible burden, a secret she must never tell. She's half demon, but she doesn't really understand what that means as her father has kept her completely in the dark and bounced her all around the world to keep in hiding. All that changes when she turn sixteen and her father gives her an unexpected gift. This opens the door for a whole world of changes some good, and some that just may mean her doom. She'll have to quickly learn to balance the demonic half with the mortal one if she is to have any hope of staying under the radar. Otherwise her next step could very well be her last as a psychotic demon is out to get revenge and Jael is his prime target.

Jael (love that name - pronounced yah-EL) started out as intriguing character that seemed a little weak in the gills for my taste, but I quickly realized that she had an iron backbone and only needed a little time to find herself in order to shine. Considering the mess of a life she has had being bounced around so much and living in almost complete ignorance of her heritage its a wonder she didn't crumble under that "terrible" secret long ago. I guess you could say this is a coming of age story, except not only does Jael have to do some maturing to find her inner strength but she also has a demon half that takes a little finesse to understand fully. While she needed time to grow into her new found powers, what she needed more than anything was to have confidence in herself and I was happy to see it grow bit by bit. She still has a long way to go of course, but she definitely made major strides, making her a really great character.

I'm not entirely sure how I feel about Misfit being a book for teens. For a YA novel, it just didn't seem to fit at times. I mean, yes the story is about teenage characters in high school and there wasn't any graphic sex. However, the story barely got started and one of the characters, who is supposed to be uber-religious by the way, was going on and on about how she gave a guy oral sex just because he bought her dinner. Definitely sends the wrong message to teenage girls. Now I'm not a prude in anyway shape or form and I don't mind sex in books at all, although it isn't really expected in YA books. I just took issue with the demoralizing aspect of it, especially when you consider just how much this character looked down on those she felt act according to the Catholic Church's standards. It made her one heck of a hypocrite in my opinion. Of course another character points this out and all that is said is that's what confession is for. I just don't think she should throw stones at others when she is no where near a perfect Catholic either. Also later on in a book a character is talking about eating someone and then shitting them out for fertilizer. This just really put me off and I felt it had no place in a YA novel.

While I had some issues with Misfit, I enjoyed the writing and was glad to see that it wasn't a cookie cutter book about teen angst with paranormal aspects thrown in. It actually was pretty unique compared to most books in the same genre. I'm not sure if it is a stand alone novel, or part of a series, but I had the feeling that things were set up for more. I actually hope there will be more books, because I would love to see the characters have a chance to grow further and hopefully triumph in the end. So if you like stories about demons with a twist and want something a little different than most books out there, then I would definitely say Misfit is the book for you.

(Received from Netgalley)

Rating:





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Dead Reckoning

, by Kt Clapsadl

Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris
Sookie Stackhouse #11



With her knack for being in trouble's way, Sookie witnesses the firebombing of Merlotte's, the bar where she works. Since Sam Merlotte is now known to be two-natured, suspicion falls immediately on the anti-shifters in the area. But Sookie suspects otherwise and she and Sam work together to uncover the culprit - and the twisted motive for the attack. But her attention is divided. Though she can't 'read' vampires, Sookie knows her lover Eric Northman and his 'child' Pam well - and she realises that they are plotting to kill the vampire who is now their master. Gradually, she is drawn into the plot -which is much more complicated than she knows. Caught up in the politics of the vampire world, Sookie will learn that she is as much of a pawn as any ordinary human - and that there is a new Queen on the board . . .


Sookie seems to be a magnet for trouble, and in Dead Reckoning, she more than proves this. The bar gets torched by a nasty fire bomb while she is working, and Sookie isn't sure who the culprit is. She and Sam must get to the bottom of things quickly as business is already bad, and they cannot afford to lose anymore customers. Meanwhile Pam and Eric seem to have something up their sleeve when it comes to their master's demise. Sookie joins them in their sentiment, but doesn't really want to be drawn into the actual plot. Of course she doesn't get that wish and quickly finds out there are many more who would seek to use her, as well as a potential betrayal that could change everything. 

While Dead Reckoning was better than the previous book, I still couldn't help but be disappointed. I prefer a book to be centered on one major issue with perhaps a few subplots to supplement. With supplement being the key word. This book just seemed to have threats coming from so many different directions as well as plenty of sideline happenings that it just seemed to muddle things. I just find it harder to get engrossed in a book when my attention keeps getting diverted due to this character's unknown plans for Sookie, or Pam's attempt to warn her of something to do with Eric. The list could go on and on. At times I really felt like I had a bad case of ADD as my attention kept wandering to previous statements and apparent machinations rather than what was currently happening.

I'm finding the relationship between Eric and Sookie to feel almost wooden at this point. I really feel like they are doomed to fall apart at this point. Even if they don't, it's going to take a whole lot to get me really believing in them again. They hide so much from each other, and neither one seems to be the other's top priority. This has me scratching my head considering just how much time and effort has been put into their relationship in the first place. With only two books left how could Sookie find her HEA if she has to deal with the heartbreak of splitting apart with Eric during them. I really hope she doesn't end up with Bill, I just wouldn't find it believable, nor would I believe her falling head over heels for someone new anyway. So basically I'm really wary of the direction things seem to be heading, and while I hope I'm proven wrong, I just don't have much faith in a believable HEA for Sookie.

I'll be honest and say that I am very glad this series will be ending with only two more books coming. Typically I am the person who gets devastated at a series ending, so my feelings about the Sookie series are a little surprising to me. I love the characters, and all the complex relationships between them, but for some time now the books have been lacking that special something that drew me to the series in the first place. I feel like so many things have been drawn out far longer than necessary while others have merely been glossed over. I fully intend to stick things out and finish Sookie's journey with her, but with the way things are looking now I have a feeling my reaction will be more of a sigh of relief that things are finally over, rather than any real satisfaction.

Rating:





Buy now at Amazon:
Dead Reckoning (Sookie Stackhouse, Book 11)

Other Reviews
Previous Books
  1. Dead Until Dark
  2. Living Dead in Dallas
  3. Club Dead
  4. Dead to the World
  5. Dead as a Doornail
  6. Definitely Dead
  7. All Together Dead
  8. From Dead to Worse
  9. Dead and Gone
  10. Dead in the Family
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Horror and Urban Fantasy
Shifter 
Vampire 

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Burn the Night Giveaway Winner Redraw

, by Kt Clapsadl


The Great Awakening approaches . . .

After eons in exile, the naturi have broken their chains and now roam the Earth bent on revenge. It is the sworn duty of Mira, the Fire Starter, to protect the nightwalker race—though even she may be powerless to withstand the horrific onslaught. As Mira and her brave lover, the vampire slayer Danaus, stand ready to do battle, thousands of winged shapeshifters darken the skies. The war of ultimate extermination has begun, and the battleground is Mira's home turf.

The humans don't yet recognize the doom descending upon them. And the nightwalkers will surely perish unless they unite with outcast naturi who claim to want peace. But these unexpected "allies" are the same demons who have long worked for Mira's destruction—and in these darkest of days the lines between friend and foe will blur treacherously before the bloody end of all things.


One of the winners never responded, so here is the new winner:


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Waiting on Wednesday (52)

, by Kt Clapsadl



Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights an upcoming release we are greatly anticipating.

My pick this week:

Another Kind of Dead - Dreg City #3
by Kelly Meding
Publication Date: August 2nd, 2011
Amazon Pre-Order: Another Kind of Dead

She can heal her own wounds. She can nail a monster to a wall. But there’s one danger Evangeline Stone never saw coming.

Been there. Done that. Evy Stone is a former Dreg Bounty Hunter who died and came back to life with some extraordinary powers. Now all but five people in the world think she is dead again, this time for good—immolated in a factory fire set specifically for her. Evy and Wyatt, her partner/lover/friend, can no longer trust their former allies, or even the highest echelons of the Triads—the army of fighters holding back from an unsuspecting public a tide of quarreling, otherworldly creatures—they can trust only each other. Because when the Triads raided a macabre, monster-filled lab of science experiments and hauled away the remnants, they failed to capture their creator: a brilliant, vampire-obsessed scientist with a wealth of powerful, anti-Dreg weaponry to trade for what he desires most of all—Evy Stone: alive and well, and the key to his ultimate experiment in mad science.

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Forever

, by Kt Clapsadl

Forever by Maggie Stiefvater
Wolves of Mercy Falls #3

then.

When Sam met Grace, he was a wolf and she was a girl. Eventually he found a way to become a boy, and their love moved from a curious distance to the intense closeness of shared lives.

now.

That should have been the end of their story. But Grace was not meant to stay human. Now she is the wolf. And the wolves of Mercy Falls are about to be killed in one final, spectacular hunt.

forever.

Sam would do anything for Grace. But can one boy and one love really change a hostile, predatory world? The past, the present, and the future are about to collide in one pure moment - a moment of death or life, farewell or forever.

Sam and Grace's love has been tested time and time again. Now in Forever, they face the biggest challenge of all. With their roles reversed, and Grace now the wolf, Sam is utterly devastated. Not only do they have lost time to worry about, but also the huge threat of annihilation hangs over their heads as a hunt to destroy every last wolf looms in the near future. They have the fight of their lives ahead of them and they will have to rely on their very unstable friends, Cole and Isabel to have any chance. With two very different paths and hard choices they all must make, this is the turning point with one slight nudge either way being their salvation, or their doom.

Forever was breathtaking, it was beautiful, or rather I should say that it felt like it should have been those things. While I had the impression of beauty, what I mostly felt was a sense of lacking. The entire time I was reading it, I felt like I was on the precipice of something wonderful, yet it never once took that step over the edge. The entire time I was reading Forever, I kept asking "Where is the great love story that we saw in Shiver?" In Shiver, the love between Sam and Grace was so enriching and heartfelt, you just knew that they were absolutely perfect together. Flash forward to Forever, and you have a sense that love is still. Yet this time around I felt I was being told about their love rather than feeling it deeply as I did in Shiver. I felt being told rather than shown lessened the impact of their love and the overall story. In fact it seemed they were so cautious around each other as if they were walking on egg shells at times, and I just couldn't grasp why. Perhaps it was the severe role reversal that made them not so sure of themselves anymore and that translated over to their relationship as well.

The true shining stars of Forever were Cole and Isabel. They both could be described as nothing less than severely damaged, each for very different reasons. At many points throughout the series it felt as if both of them were well past the point of no return, yet in the next moment something would happen that gave a glimmer of hope. In Forever, their growth is exponential, yet very realistic as severe damage cannot heal over night. I highly doubt either of them will ever truly be "right", but at least they seem to finally be on the right path. As far as them together, well I'm not really sure what they really are, but I do know that there is something very real there under it all. A memorable quote between them would be Isabel saying "You're an addiction," and his response being "You should know." This really summed them up, showing not only the depth between them, but also the innate dysfunction they both have. Perhaps this is an even better example:
"Cole kissed me.. It was the sort of kiss that would take a long time to recover from. You could take each of our kisses, from the very first moment we'd met and put them on a slide in a microscope, and I was pretty sure what you'd find. Even an expert would see nothing on the first one, and then on the next one, the start of something - mostly outnumbered, easily destroyed - and then more and more until finally this one, something that even the untrained eye could spot. Evidence that we'd probably never be cured of each other, but we might be able to keep it from killing us."
I think this more than anything shows the utter rawness of the two, making them the complete opposite of Sam and Grace, yet somehow still as powerful of an impact in the end.

That ending, if you can really call it a true ending, just left me rather unsatisfied. Now don't get me wrong, I enjoy a slightly open ending that hints at possibilities for the future. Forever just felt like it was rushed and randomly cut off with no real clear path set ahead. I prefer at least some sort of satisfaction and a sense of completeness and unfortunately Forever fell completely flat in that department. I've heard many people say that Shiver should have been a stand alone novel, and I can't help but agree with them to an extent. I do think that I would have missed the growth we saw in Cole and Isabel, both as individuals and as a potential couple. Yet again, I was left with some frustration in the lack of concreteness in their future. So in the end, I can't say I regret sticking through this series and reading past Shiver, but I am little glad that I borrowed Forever from the library rather than purchasing it. However, none of this means I have lost my faith in Maggie Stiefvater's ability to craft a truly beautiful love story and I will still be on the lookout for future novels.

Rating:





Buy now from Amazon:
Forever (Wolves of Mercy Falls, Book 3)

Other Reviews
Previous Books
  1. Shiver
  2. Linger
Challenge Categories:
Outdo Yourself
YA 
Shifter 

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It's Monday! What are you reading (52)

, by Kt Clapsadl






It's Monday! What Are You Reading, hosted by Book Journey, is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.






Here's what I read this past week:

Night Shift (Jill Kismet, Hunter, Book 1)Hunter's Prayer (Jill Kismet, Hunter, Book 2)Spell Bound (Otherworld, Book 12)




Night Shift by Lilith Saintcrow (Review)
Hunter's Prayer by Lilith Saintcrow (Review)
Spell Bound by Kelley Armstrong (Early Review)

This is another fly by post due to a lack of time. Sorry! I'm going to try and write next week's post in advance as Mondays just always seem to be insanely hectic for me.

My Upcoming List:

Forever by Maggie Stiefvater
Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris
Misfit by Jon Skovron (Early Review)

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Spell Bound (Early Review)

, by Kt Clapsadl

Spell Bound by Kelley Armstrong
Women of the Otherworld #12

Savannah Levine is in terrible danger, and for once she's powerless to help herself. At the heartbreaking conclusion of Waking the Witch, Savannah swore that she would give up her powers if it would prevent further pain for a young orphan. Little did she know that someone would take her up on that promise.

And now, witch-hunting assassins, necromancers, half-demons, and rogue witches all seem to be after her. The threat is not just for Savannah; every member of the Otherworld might be at risk. While most of her fellow supernaturals are circling the wagons at a gathering of the council in Miami, Savannah is caught on the road, isolated from those who can protect her and unable to use her vast spell-casting talent, the thing she counts on most. In a story that will change the shape of the Otherworld forever, Armstrong gathers Elena, Clay, Paige, Lucas, Jamie, Hope, and other beloved characters, who soon learn that the greatest threat to supernaturals just may come from within.


At the end of Waking the Witch, Savannah lost her powers. In Spell Bound she is trying to come to terms with this, but really not succeeding. Her spells feel as important to her as breathing, so losing them was quite devastating. It doesn't help that trouble keeping coming up, putting her in situations that make her miss the lost firepower even more. It seems all supernatural are a target for some sort of nefarious scheme. While everyone else meets in the Cabel strong hold in Florida, Savannah and Adam are out on the front lines trying to get to the bottom of things. They'll need to get to the bottom of things quickly or run the risk of their world being forever changed.

At times while reading this I felt more as if I was reading a YA novel than an adult. It just didn't have the feel to it that Kelley Armstrong's other adult novels have. Perhaps it is because Savannah still seems so immature despite her age. She continually makes poor decisions, which in itself is not the issue. The problem is that she doesn't step up to the plate and admit her mistakes, she just runs off at the first sign of confrontation. She also threw several "temper tantrums" because things were not going her way. At one point in the book she talks about how she was always respectful and helpful whenever she visited the werewolves growing up, but was completely lazy and constantly disobeyed Paige and Lucas when she was home. It is obvious that she really cares for her guardians, so why treat them with less respect than the werewolves? Clay did seem to give her a wake up call in Spell Bound, so perhaps we will start to see some major progress in her behavior.


I am a very impatient person when it comes to relationship progression, so the issue with Savannah and Adam is driving me nuts. I was really hoping for some relationship progression in this book, but it just felt like things were one step forward and two steps back. Yes, I understand that this is only Savannah's second book, but things really started many books ago when she first met Adam. Of course the age difference was an issue at the time, but it just isn't anymore. I understand her hesitation to admit her feelings to him, as she is afraid he will turn her down. However, Adam would have to be blind not to have figured it out by now, considering the fact that everyone else has. Besides, I really think he cares for her too, so I'm not sure why he hasn't spoken up, unless it is due to her immaturity. As the next book is supposed to be the last one, I can only hope to finally get some satisfaction about these two characters coming together before the series is over.

While Spell Bound read very quickly, there just didn't seem to be a lot of action or real plot development. It felt more like a set up for a final battle in the next book as we don't even get a real picture as to who or what the "bad" guys are. As I am a huge Kelley Armstrong fan, the slow movement and lack of progression did come as a little bit of a disappointment. However, I do have a feeling that the final book will definitely pick things up so this great series can go out with a bang. All in all, while Spell Bound may be a bit of a slower installment than the previous Women of the Otherworld books, it still is a pretty enjoyable read that fans of the series won't want to miss.


(Received from Netgalley)

Rating:






Pre-order at Amazon:
Spell Bound (Otherworld, Book 12)

Other Reviews
Previous Books
  1. Bitten
  2. Stolen
  3. Dime Store Magic
  4. Industrial Magic
  5. Haunted
  6. No Humans Involved
  7. Personal Demons
  8. Living With the Dead
  9. Frostbitten
  10. Waking the Witch
Challenge Categories:
Outdo Yourself
Horror and Urban Fantasy

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Hunter's Prayer

, by Kt Clapsadl

Hunter's Prayer by Lilith Saintcrow
Jill Kismet #2




 Another night on the Nightside...An ancient evil looms over Santa Luz. Prostitutes are showing up dead and eviscerated. And Jill Kismet just might be able to get her revenge against an old enemy.

There's just one problem. Someone wants Jill dead--again. And if they have to open up Hell itself to kill her, they will.

Sometimes, even when you're Jill Kismet, you don't have a prayer...






The crimes committed against innocents just keep getting worse. Prostitutes are going missing and some are showing up with their entire insides savaged. Since Jill is a former prostitute, this hits home hard as she scrambles to stop the ones responsible. Unfortunately it looks like she is the next target and she keeps getting set up for run ins with a nasty creature that wants nothing other than destruction. Meanwhile Perry is up to his usual mind games and trying to claim her for her own. It will require everything she has to keep him from getting his claws any further into her, as she must protect her city at all costs.

The horrors and gore step it up in this book, definitely not for those weak of stomach. However, the worse the crime committed, the more determined Jill is to stop those responsible. She is such a damaged character, yet she never once falters in her duty to protect the innocents of her city. Her entire life could be in shambles, yet she would still give her last breath if it meant stopping one more horror. I understand why there are so few hunters. Being a hunter requires such complete discipline and sacrifice, that it is very rare for someone to be able to give that much of themselves. Sometimes I wonder if Jill is able to do this because she doesn't have any self worth, so she doesn't feel like she really is sacrificing that much in the end. I hope in time she realizes just how much she actually is worth, as her devotion is nothing short of remarkable.

I enjoyed the relationship between Jill and Saul. He is her rock and sounding board. She has come to depend on him so much, that it is a wonder that she survived before he came along. There are many times where he is all that stands between herself and falling into damnation, which wouldn't take much due to her "bargain" with Perry. However, until she accepts herself, I think their relationship will be hindered. Since she doesn't have any self-worth, she doesn't really feel she deserves Saul, so she can't fully trust him, as the fear he will leave is too high. I have high hopes for them, it will just take a little work and acceptance.

I enjoyed this book just as much as the first one, if not a little more. The dynamic between Jill and Saul really added to the book and allowed a little "happiness" to shine through. I need at least little light in my books, so I was happy to have it in this book despite the absolute horrors and darkness of the rest of it. The ending surprised me, and promises great things for the next book. Definitely a series worth checking out, but I would recommend starting from the beginning to make sure you have enough back story. Very good read!

Rating:





Buy now at Amazon:
Hunter's Prayer (Jill Kismet, Hunter, Book 2)

Challenge Categories:
Outdo Yourself
Horror and Urban Fantasy

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Waiting on Wednesday (51)

, by Kt Clapsadl



Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights an upcoming release we are greatly anticipating.

My pick this week:

Touch of Frost - Mythos Academy #1
by Jennifer Estep
Publication Date: July 26th 2011
Amazon Pre-Order:  Touch of Frost

My name is Gwen Frost, and I go to Mythos Acad­emy — a school of myths, magic and war­rior whiz kids, where even the lowli­est geek knows how to chop off somebody’s head with a sword and Logan Quinn, the hottest Spar­tan guy in school, also hap­pens to be the deadliest.

But lately, things have been weird, even for Mythos. First, mean girl Jas­mine Ash­ton was mur­dered in the Library of Antiq­ui­ties. Then, some­one stole the Bowl of Tears, a mag­i­cal arti­fact that can be used to bring about the sec­ond Chaos War. You know, death, destruc­tion and lots of other bad, bad things. Freaky stuff like this goes on all the time at Mythos, but I’m deter­mined to find out who killed Jas­mine and why – espe­cially since I should have been the one who died...

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Burn the Night Giveaway Winners

, by Kt Clapsadl


The Great Awakening approaches . . .

After eons in exile, the naturi have broken their chains and now roam the Earth bent on revenge. It is the sworn duty of Mira, the Fire Starter, to protect the nightwalker race—though even she may be powerless to withstand the horrific onslaught. As Mira and her brave lover, the vampire slayer Danaus, stand ready to do battle, thousands of winged shapeshifters darken the skies. The war of ultimate extermination has begun, and the battleground is Mira's home turf.

The humans don't yet recognize the doom descending upon them. And the nightwalkers will surely perish unless they unite with outcast naturi who claim to want peace. But these unexpected "allies" are the same demons who have long worked for Mira's destruction—and in these darkest of days the lines between friend and foe will blur treacherously before the bloody end of all things.


The copies of Burn the Night by Jocelynn Drake go to:

Rachel from The Rest is Still Unwritten

Stephanie from Paranormal Haven

Congratulations!

Night Shift

, by Kt Clapsadl

Night Shift by Lilith Saintcrow
Jill Kismet #1



Not everyone can take on the things that go bump in the night.

Not everyone tries.

But Jill Kismet is not just anyone.

She's a Hunter, trained by the best - and in over her head.

Welcome to the night shift...





Jill Kismet, a kick-ass but seriously flawed heroine, is the resident Hunter for Santa Luz. It is her job to hunt down hellbreed and traders who prey on the innocent people in her city. In order to be strong enough she made deal with the city's top hellbreed. This deal made her not quite human, but stronger and faster, necessary skills to stop the things that go bump in the night. Things get a little hairy when four cops are savaged to death by what appears to be a rogue Were. She knows this is slightly out of her skill set to handle, so she reluctantly seeks the help of a judgmental were named Saul. Together they realize there is more to this killer than it seems when the stink of hellbreed keeps showing up wherever the rogue has been. Weres and hellbreed just do not mix, so this case is completely baffling. Jill will have to use every trick up her sleeve to crack this one and protect her beloved city.

At the start of this book, Jill is an absolute mess over her mentor's murder. Even though it has been six months, she is still barely scraping by. She throws herself into her duty of destroying hellbreed with complete abandon, as if the more she risks her life, the closer she will get to her mentor. Everything about her screams "damaged", and as the book shows more and more glimpses into her path you can't help but wonder how she survived at all. It is amazing how she can be so incredibly strong yet so fragile at the same, and I find this makes her a very interesting character to read about.

While it wasn't really an integral part of the plot, I enjoyed the blooming relationship between Saul and Jill. It definitely had a very rocky start, but got better as time went on. There are several obstacles in their way, with him being a Were, and her own self worth issues because she feels she is tainted. She spent most of the book pushing him away because she didn't feel she deserved him. However, I have a feeling their relationship will play a more important role in the future. I'm looking forward to that because I think Saul will be able to help balance her inner demons, and allow Jill to actually have a little happiness, something she never really has had.

I really enjoyed this book. It was very unique and different from anything else I've read. The characters and world are really intriguing as well as thoroughly fleshed out. There was just enough back story to explain things well and keep me from getting confused. I loved Jill's strength and vulnerability as well as Saul's very calm and even temperament. I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series, and I hope Jill continues on her path towards accepting herself. It will be a long bumpy road, but I think in the end she can pull through. I recommend this to anyone who likes the darker side of Urban fantasy, with just a slice of romance. It definitely kept me entertained!

Rating:





Buy now at Amazon:
Night Shift (Jill Kismet, Hunter, Book 1)

Challenge Categories:
Outdo Yourself
Horror and Urban Fantasy
New Author 

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