Review: Amid the Winter Snow by Grace Draven, Thea Harrison, Elizabeth Hunter, Jeffe Kennedy

, by Kt Clapsadl

Amid the Winter Snow by Grace Draven, Thea Harrison, Elizabeth Hunter, Jeffe Kennedy

As the snows fall and hearths burn, four stories of Midwinter beginnings prove that love can fight its way through the chillest night...

The mark Jahna Ulfrida was born with has made her a target of the cruel and idle all her life. During the long, crowded festivities of Deyalda, there’s nowhere to escape. Until a handsome stranger promises to teach her to save herself…

THE CHOSEN, by Thea Harrison
In her visions, Lily sees two men fighting for her tiny country’s allegiance: the wolf and the tiger, each deadly, each cunning. One will bring Ys chaos and death, one a gentler path—but she’s destined to love whichever she chooses. The midwinter Masque is upon them, and the wolf is at her door…

THE STORM, by Elizabeth Hunter
When her soul mate died in a massacre of the half-angelic Irin people, Renata thought she’d never feel happiness again. She’s retreated to the snowy Dolomites to remember her hurts—until determined, irrepressible Maxim arrives to insist on joy, too. And before she can throw him out, they discover a secret the Irin have to know…

As a blizzard threatens their mountain keep, the new Queen Amelia of the Twelve Kingdoms and her unofficial consort Ash face their own storm. Ash knows a scarred, jumpy ex-convict isn’t the companion his queen needs. But when a surprise attack confines them together in their isolated sanctuary, the feast of midwinter might tempt even Ash into childlike hope…

This anthology was the perfect evening read escape for this hectic holiday season. Each day has been filled with all the crazy planning and prepping, errands, and work galore. But each evening I had this fun anthology to look forward to, and it was just what I needed. Despite not being familiar with most of the worlds behind the stories below, I found myself easily slipping right into the stories.

THE DARKEST MIDNIGHT, by Grace Draven 5/5
I hadn't read anything from this series previously, but I will have to remedy that soon. The world behind this novella was incredibly rich and had so much to offer. While Grace is a new to me author, her storytelling was truly masterful. The characters, the plotline, the world, everything hooked me in from the start. I particularly enjoyed seeing Jahna's progression from damaged child to a fully confident woman as the story was told over many years. The romance was a slow and sweet build, and just the right pace. Great read!

THE CHOSEN, by Thea Harrison 5/5
I have to admit the entire reason I picked up this anthology was to read Thea's novella. I absolutely love the Elder Races series, and this story was no exception. While it's on a smaller realm that I'm not too familiar with, there were boundless expansions to this already rich world that I truly enjoyed. The idea of the Chosen with a wolf like hero out to conquer, well it was delicious read. I loved the sparks between the two, and every part of this novella. I hope to see more from them in the future!

THE STORM, by Elizabeth Hunter 4/5
Just like Grace's installment, despite not being familiar with the world, I had no problem slipping right into Elizabeth's novella. The fallen angel lore was truly fascinating, and like Grace's installment this one also took place over a period of many years. I'm finding that I'm really enjoying these longer time period books as they allow for such a rich and realistic progression with the hero and heroine. The poor heroine in this story comes with so much baggage and rightfully slow. I truly enjoyed seeing the hero chip slowly away at her armor. Very enjoyable!

THE SNOWS OF WINDROVEN, by Jeffe Kennedy 3/5
I have to admit that this book was my least favorite of the anthology, mostly due to that I don't feel like it stood alone. I have not read anything from this author/world, and this novella felt like it was started right in the middle of a couple's story. The entire time reading it, I felt like I was trying to play catch up. Also, it's told from the hero's point of view, and frankly he was much too whiny for my tastes. However, that could be an unfair judgement based on just this novella due to all my missing backstory. The parts of the world that I did see and the rest of the characters were very rich and well written, I just was missing too much outside required knowledge to really enjoy this one.

All in all if you are looking for a fun holiday read, AMID THE WINTER SNOW is for you. I hope you enjoy these stories as much as I did!

(Received a copy from the author)


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Review: Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake

, by Kt Clapsadl

Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake
Broken Riders #2

The Riders: Three immortal brothers who kept the Baba Yagas safe, now stripped of their summons to protect. But fate is not finished with them—and their new callings are even more powerful...

Though his physical wounds have healed, Gregori Sun, the eldest of the Riders, remains in spiritual turmoil. His search for his mother, the one person able to heal his soul and save his life, is failing—until he crosses paths with a beautiful and fascinating librarian who might be the key to his salvation...

Ciera Evans’s bookish ways are just a guise. The product of a difficult past, she has dedicated her life to saving lost teens—by any means necessary. She works alone, but when a dark, brooding stranger proposes they team up to solve both their problems, she is tempted—in more ways than one...

After Ciera and Sun’s plans are derailed by dangerous enemies, they find themselves entangled in an ungodly affair—one that will force them to either find new strength together or be forever haunted by their pasts alone.

DANGEROUSLY DIVINE was a very enjoyable and sweet story. While there was some spice, this one definitely ranked on the sweeter side of the scale. There was just something about Gregori's zen that wouldn't allow it to step into over-sexy drive. And while I enjoy a good smexy story just as much as the next gal, I found this one to be a refreshing change of pace. There was just something so enjoyable about seeing these two broken yet so strong people come together. I think the biggest thing I enjoy about this spin off series is the overall theme of healing. There's just something so satisfying about seeing both the hero and the heroine overcome such terrible but different paths. They are exactly the feel good reads I need!

Not only did this book feature all the character healing and feel good parts, but it also expanded the world behind both series a great deal. There was significant and interesting progression in the Rider's backstory that added a whole new depth to the series. That in itself is very impressive, the ability to add such depth into a world despite being so many books in. Very impressive.

All in all this was a very enjoyable installment in the Broken Riders series that only served to enrich this fascinating world even more. Fans of the series should be very pleased with Gregori's installment.

(Received a copy from the publisher)


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Previous Books:
     1. Dangerously Charming

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