Book Review: Lakota Honor (Branded Trilogy #1) by Kat Flannery

Title: Lakota Honor (Branded Trilogy #1)
Author: Kat Flannery
Genre: Historical / Western / Paranormal Romance
Age Group: Adult
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Fate has brought them together, but will a promise tear them apart?

In the small town of Willow Creek, Colorado, Nora Rushton spends most of her days locked up in her home with a father who resents her and fighting off unwanted marriage proposals from the wealthy Elwood Calhoun. Marked as a witch, Nora must hide her healing powers from those who wish to destroy all the witkowin—crazy women. What she doesn’t know is that a bounty hunter is hot on her trail.

Lakota native Otakatay has an obligation to fulfill. He has been hired to kill the witkowin. In a time when race and difference are a threat and innocence holds no ground, courage, love and honor will bring Nora and Otakatay together as they fight for their freedom. Will the desire to fulfill his promise drive Otakatay to kill Nora? Or will the kindness he sees in her blue eyes push him to be the man he once was?

In Lakota Honor, Nora Rushton lives in the small town of Willow Creek in a historical setting. Nora spends most of her time hidden away in her home. The reason she can’t go outside? Her healing powers that often tend to generate accusations of witchcraft. And her father does his best to protect her, yet at the same time he also resents her, making for a toxic combination.

Nora comes across Lakota native while wandering through the nearby forest. His name is Otakatav and he’s a bounty hunter who, as it turns out, has been hired to kill any people with healing powers – like Nora. Will he be able to fulfill this quest?

Nora has a strong personality and her love for others shines through and makes her come across as very sympathetic. She’s willing to risk herself to put others first, and she has a very admirable personality. I really liked her, and I also really enjoyed the book. It was a fast read, and once I started, I didn’t want to finish.

 

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Book Review and Giveaway Girl Within Girl Book 2: Healing

Title: Girl Within Girl Book 2: Healing
Author: S.P. Aruna
Genre: Erotic Thriller
Age Group: Adult (18+)
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Trapped in a mountain cabin with three, possible four, women….every guy’s dream, right? Or could it turn out to be a nightmare?

Dr. Sean Paisley needs to find out how to bring these women together – his survival depends on it. To make matters worse, he’s in love with all of them….made passionate love to all of them. Throw in a nasty grizzly bear and the dark forces of the government and the situation becomes even more dire.

In the end, he was stuck with Belinda, a hysterical, suicidal, homicidal maniac of a person, confined together in the wilderness of the onset of winter. Now both their lives are at stake.

Last year, I read and enjoyed Girl Within Girl Book 1: Unraveling, the first book in the series, so I was looking forward to reading the second book in the series, and it didn’t dissapoint.
You would think that being trapped in a mountain cabin with several women is every man’s dream, but for Dr. Sean Paisley it turns out to be a veritable nightmare. To make matters worse, he’s in love with all the women, and they all have some sort of feelings toward him. Add in dark governments secrets, nasty grizzly bears, and you have some real suspense putting you on the edge of your seat.
Just like the first book, this sequel is equally fast-paced. All the characters are well-crafted and three-dimensional, and they all have different personalities that the reader can keep apart. The story has some interesting twists, and overall, it’s an excellent erotic thriller.
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Book Review: Fields of Gold Beneath Pairie Skies by Suzanne deMontigny

Title: Fields of Gold Beneath Prairie Skies
Author: Suzanne deMontigny
Genre: Historical Romance
Rating: 4,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

French-Canadian soldier, Napoleon, proposes to Lea during WWI, promising golden fields of wheat as far as the eye can see. After the armistice, he sends money for her passage, and she journeys far from her family and the conveniences of a modern country to join him on a homestead in Saskatchewan. There, she works hard to build their dream of a prospering farm, clearing fields alongside her husband through several pregnancies and even after suffering a terrible loss. When the stock market crashes in ’29, the prairies are stricken by a long and abysmal drought. Thrown into poverty, she struggles to survive in a world where work is scarce, death is abundant, and hope dwindles. Will she and her family survive the Great Depression?

Fields of Gold Beneath Prairie Skies tells the story of the author’s grandparents and their struggles during the grand depression. Frnech-Canadian soldier Napoleon proposes to the love of his life, Lea, during World War I. He promises her fields of gold (wheat) beneath the prairie skies – hence the title of the book. Lea believes him and journeys away from her family, away from modern conveniences, to join Napoleon on a homestead in Saskatchewan. Prairie life is not what Lea imagined it would be and although she works hard to build her dream of a prospering farm, life is far from fairytale-perfect. When the stock market crashes in ’29, the prairies are hit by a long, terrible drought, and Lea and her family are thrown into poverty. Can they survive the Great Depressoin?

God, life on the prairie put me through a rollercoaster of emotions. Sometimes I felt joy for the small victories Lea and her family had, and for the loving, caring moments they cherished. Sometimes I had to hold in my tears as I saw how tough life was for them, how impossible the odds seemed, how they had to deal with tragedy and loss.

The writing was excellent, and made the setting and characters come alive on the pages. I really felt as if I was transported back in time, as if this family became my own family during the duration of the book. Fans of historical novels should definitely pick up this book.

 

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Book Review: Magic & Survival (From Siberia With Love #4)

Title: Magic & Survival (From Siberia with Love #4)
Author: Ilana Cohen
Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction, Contemporary
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Wild sex adventures and orgies mix with scientific discovery at Siberia University

Encounter the naughty side of life at the university in Siberia where, like at most colleges, anything goes: sexual adventures, orgies, and more. Alex’s academic work there is cutting edge. It enables top scientists to produce the first information storage discs that herald a new era: the computer age.

Experience the enticing Tel Aviv singles scene

Then take a peek at the wildness and intensity of the life of young people in Israel. Edith’s daughter, Ruth, moves in with her boyfriend in Tel Aviv, leaving Edith very lonely. In her daughter’s neighborhood, Edith discovers a group of young former soldiers in the big city for the first time, for better or for worse. They attend university by day and pour drinks by night.

Can Edith induce her lover to leave all else and fulfill their shared destiny?

“Why am I alone, actually? I’m always alone. Inside this great love”, Edith muses. She presents her lover, Alex, with an ultimatum: He must leave his wife and family and come live with her. Will Edith finally fulfill what she believes to be her destiny and have her beloved all to herself?

I previously read and reviewed the first three books in the series: Joy & Survival and Mystery & Survival were both 3 star reads and the third book, Charm & Survival, was a 3.5 star read for me. After enjoying the series so far, I was looking forward to reading book number four, Magic & Survival. And guess what? The book didn’t dissapoint at all. In fact, it was my favorite of the series.

In this book, Edith’s daughter Ruth has moved in with her boyfriend, leaving Edith rather lonely. On top of that, Alex is still officially married to his wife… And Edith feels very alone and like no one understands her. She wants Alex to break up with his wife, and leave his family… But will Alex make that choice? And if he doesn’t, will Edith be strong enough to move on? And if he does… Will they be strong enough to be together, and be the epic love Edith so desires?

I loved this book, and how it brought the relationship of Edith and Alex to the next level, and really forced Edith to think about her priorities and what she wants in life, and in love. She was less naive here than she was in the previous books, which was a welcome change too. With several hot and steamy scenes, it’s an excellent erotic romance story.

Book Review: Charm & Survival (From Siberia With Love #3)

Title: Charm & Survival (From Siberia with Love #3)
Author: Ilana Cohen
Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction, Contemporary
Rating: 3,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Steaming hot lovers are reunited by tragedy . . .

Edith can’t capture Alex, the wildly attractive ladies’ man who she believes to be her destiny. On his way to a romantic rendez-vous with another woman, Alex suffers a terrible car crash. The tragic event returns him to Edith. After a long stay in the hospital, bandaged and injured, Alex is now a broken vessel, his beautiful face cracked with ugly scars.

Edith’s reward for undying love that does not judge: five-star sex!

Edith welcomes her lover back. In her arms Alex becomes himself once more and graces his beloved with the professional, five-star sex that Edith has come to know and love.

Tantalizing sex with tales of mind-boggling adventure from the wilds of Siberia

Alex also regales Edith with countless stories of his wild and daring exploits in the wilderness of Siberia. His audacious personality and bold curiosity led him to experience unbridled sex and adventure in the untamed forests, mines, and villages of that huge Soviet wasteland. Join Edith as she is transported to Siberia by Alex’s descriptions and then return to their steamy love-nest in Israel.

I previously read and reviewed the first two books in the series: Joy & Survival and Mystery & Survival, and rated both of those 3 stars. Charm & Survival, in my view at least, surpassed both books, being my favorite in the series so far.

Alex is a ladies’ man. Edith, who believes Alex is the love of her life, should know that by now yet she stubbornly refuses to admit it to herself, even when Alex goes out for a romantic rendez-vous with another woman. On the way over, Alex suffers a terrible car crash, though, an event that turns him to Edith. As he’s now stuck to a hospital bed, injured, scarred, Edith becomes his confidante.

He tells her of his adventures back in Siberia, some of those rather sexual in nature, and Edith and Alex grow closer together as Alex heals.

More than the other books, there’s a strong erotic element in this one, and Alex and Edith are finally becoming like real partners in a relationship. Maybe not a very conventional relationship, but a relationship nonetheless. I liked Alex more in this book than I did in the previous ones. Edith also appears slightly more naive, although sometimes I still wanted to knock some sense into her.

Anyway, fans of travel stories, of erotic adventures, and of struggling characters will enjoy this book. Definitely for adults, though, as it comes with a lot of steamy scenes.

Bewaren
Bewaren

Book Review: Joy & Survival (From Siberia with Love #1) by Ilana Cohen

Title: Joy & Survival (From Siberia with Love #1)
Author: Ilana Cohen
Genre: Action, Adventure, Travel
Rating: 3 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Edith falls for a man from the other side of the world. The impulse and passion he has brought to her world will turn her life upside down.

After Edith’s husband dies, she invests herself in her day job at the bank when, one day, she is paid a visit by a handsome, mysterious man who will change her life forever.

Alex, a charismatic and brilliant scientist of Russian origin, immediately dazzles Edith with his wealth, achievements and style. She listens attentively as he narrates the memories of his childhood in Siberia – a previous life in a distant world, hard to imagine and impossible to ignore. Edith is blinded by his shimmering presence, but Alex is married.

An invisible thread connects the two strangers who have been brought together by destiny – but for what cause?

In Alex, she finds an escape from reality – into the distant and foreign landscapes of alienated and frozen nature. It is within this distant, almost imaginary landscape that she is able to find herself, for the very first time. Within the stories of this perfect stranger, who has grown in the other side of the world, Edith finds a familiarity and a precious sense of belonging. What will she be willing to risk for this frozen love?

An exciting novel about untainted love, sweeping emotions, faith and passion that will sweep you off your feet.

I first read Mystery & Survival (the second book in the series) before I read Joy & Survival. I do recommend starting with the first book, as it will all make more sense that way. However, I still enjoyed book two without having read book one first – but now I’ve read the first book, I enjoyed the series even more.

Anyway, on to the story. After the death of her husband, Edith dedicated herself to her work. She doesn’t know what else to do, and she’s not really interested in dating anyone. That is, until she meets Alex.

Alex is a brilliant scientist of Russian origin. He’s charming and enigmatic, extremely wealthy, and also very confident. He seems like the perfect catch. One problem, though. Alex is already married.

As Alex shares his story of his childhood growing up in Siberia with Edith, a near stranger, the two of them form a connection that might prove unbreakable.

Edith is a tough character to like, first because she falls for a married man, but also because she’s very naive. However, that part of her is also endaring, and it made me feel sorry for her more than anything. The back stories of both main characters were fleshed out and interesting, and I liked that, it gave them dimension and personality.

Having already read the second book, I knew a little of what to expect, but I was still pleasantly surprised at times.

Book Review: Ariella’s Escape by Carolee Croft

Title: Ariella’s Escape
Author: Carolee Croft
Genre: Epic Fantasy Romance
Age Group: Adult (18+)
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Ariella had always believed that the life of a warrior should include indulging in wine and men whenever they were on offer… And in Chaldea, the capital of the old empire, they certainly were.

Especially the man she finds in her bedchamber, a slave provided by her hosts to entertain her in any way she wishes.

But when betrayed and surrounded by enemies in a strange land, there is only one man she can trust—the slave who was meant only for her pleasure but is much more than he seems.

Demetrius had been captured in a battle at the age of fifteen, and slavery was all he had known in his adult life. When his chance for freedom comes along, his fate is bound to the noble warrior maiden whose voice and body he cannot resist. Duty calls him to return to his kingdom, but the journey will take him places that will change him forever.

Together, they make their way through a den of thieves and an enchanted elf forest, but the biggest danger of all may be their fiery attraction to each other and the secret that will draw a dividing line between them.

In Ariella’s Escape, Ariella is a female warrior who knows what she wants, and is willing to do whatever it takes to get what she desires. She’s not afraid to enjoy the finer things of life (such as sex – beware, this is an erotic fantasy novel, and definitely NOT for young adults, strictly for adults, I’m afraid), she drinks extraordinary amounts of alcohol, and she also enjoys a good fight. In fact, she’s very skilled at fighting and she’s powerful and knows her own strengths and weaknesses.

Demetrius is a slave Ariella is introduced to early in the story. He’s love interest, and when they first meet, he’s a slave provided by Ariella’s hosts to entertain her during her stay… In any way she wishes. You can guess what that means.

But when Ariella is betrayed, Demetrius is the only one she can trust, and together, they must find a way to survive and to resist the fiery attraction between them, for it might put them in grave danger.

While the main plot was pretty good, it’s the sub stories that really made this book shine for me. They were original and imaginative, and brought forward characters I would love to get to know better. Like the scenes in the elf ofrest, I really liked those.

Recommended to adult fans of high fantasy with heavy doses of romance.

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Book Review and Giveaway: To Dodge a Duke

Title: To Dodge a Duke
Author: Naomi Boom
Genre: Historical Romance / Regency
Age Group: Adult
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

When a duke gets a chance to pursue a lady as someone else, he would be a fool not to take it.

Logan Eastworth, the Tenth Duke of Waking, returns to England to find a woman to marry. When Miss Eleanor Ashford assumes he holds the title of baronet, he does not correct her error. Instead, he plays on her misconception and arranges a house party where he can make her fall for him and not his title.

Miss Ashford desires a marriage of convenience to an earl or higher. Not to some low-life baronet with an estate in the far reaches of England. She has no time for love, even if the green-eyed baronet with a charming smile tries to convince her otherwise.

Miss Ashford has a choice to make. To wed a duke or the baronet setting her heart aflame. Her choice might not be as simple as she believes.

While this is the second book in a series, the Entangled Nobility series, I had no problem following the story or connecting with the characters despite not having read the first book. This makes me believe all books can be read as stand-alones, and probably focus on different characters.

Anyway, on to To Dodge a Duke. Logan Eastworth is the tenth Duke of Waking. However, upon his return to England, Miss Eleanor Ashford assumes he’s a baronet rather than a duke, and he’s not keen to correct her error. In fact, Logan is more interested in getting her to fall for him rather than his title.

Eleanor, on the other hand, wants a marriage of convenience. Rather than a baronet, she’s aiming for someone with the title of earl or higher… Until she starts developing feelings for a certain baronet, and all the things that once seemed crystal clear become hard choices she has to make. Will she marry for convenience, or for love?

The chemistry between Logan and Eleanor seemed very real, and both characters were realistic and intriguing. I particularly liked Logan, he had a certain dashing charm about him. The writing was fluent, and the settings were described well enough that I could picture myself there.

Recommended to fans of historical romance.

 
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Book Review: Cry Wolf by Greta Stone

Title: Cry Wolf

Author: Greta Stone

Genre: M/M Urban fantasy

Age Group: Adult

Rating: 4,5 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Everything you know is a lie.

Peter is a kitsune. Chaos follows him wherever he goes. Good intentions, bad intentions—it doesn’t matter. Even mimicking the howl of a friend he hasn’t seen in over a decade turns out to have disastrous consequences.

The wolf doesn’t have a name. For now, he goes by Luca. He has no past, and as an escaped slave, if he can’t stay hidden in the shadows, he’ll have no future. When someone steals his howl, he’s drawn to investigate, and ends up saddled with a mouthy fox who insists they used to be friends once upon a time.

Petty problems and a dubious reunion are pushed aside the longer they’re stranded together. The Underwood is a dangerous place.

They have two choices: work together or die.

Join Greta Stone in a dark paranormal MM romance retelling of Aesop’s fable, The Boy Who Cried Wolf, and David P. Mannix’s classic novel, The Fox and the Hound.

In Cry Wolf, Peter is a kitsune, a fox shifter, who has chaos following him wherever he goes. Luca is a wolf who has no past and likely no future either, if he can’t stay hidden in the shadows. When someone steals his howl, he’s forced to investigate, and that leads him to Peter, a fox who insists he and Luca used to be friends, once upon a time.

Reminiscent of the story of The Fox and the Hound, and set in The Underwood, a dangerous yet fabulous place with fabulous world-building, this is an excellent story for people who enjoy dark paranormal romance, fables, and MM romance.

The suspense was there from the first page, and the pacing was high from the start, and never slowed down. This is an excellent book and I can’t recommend it enough.

 

Book Review: Scent of the Past by Erin Marie Bernardo

Title: Scent of the Past
Author: Erin Marie Bernardo
Genre: Historical Fiction
Age Group: Adult
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Scent of the Past by Erin Marie Bernardo
A secret diary. A forgotten past. Another time.

​​
When people think of time travel, they think of the clichéd manufactured kind. Of giant electronic machines with flashing lights and buttons calibrated to shoot you into the past with one press. But it doesn’t work that way. You need a reason, a connection, and—most important—a link. But you can’t choose when and why you go. That would be too easy, and we’d all be snapping our fingers in hopes of seeing lost treasures of yesteryear. It must choose you.
Close cousins Addison and Elissa live in present day New York City and lead somewhat ordinary lives. When uncertain circumstances surrounding a set of antique perfume bottles sends them back to eighteenth-century France, they must uncover the truth behind their travel.

Disaster strikes when Addison finds herself in a nearly identical situation to a mishap she experienced in the present—the witnessing of a murder and release of a secret. Only this time the truth could destroy the entire French monarchy. With Addison’s head on the line, the young women search for answers before Addison suffers her unlucky fate twice. It is only when they discover the haunting connections to life in the present, that they understand why they both were sent, and why a repeating past…may not always be such a bad thing.

Scent of the Past isn’t an average time travel story. It focuses on two cousins with a rather unique bond, Addison and Elissa. They both live pretty ordinary life in modern day New York City. Elissa and Addison coudln’t be more different, yet they share an unique connection and they get along really well. When a set of antique perfume bottles sends the cousins back to eighteenth-century France, they must find out why they’ve been sent back in time, and what their puposes is, here in the folds of history. When the cousins discover haunting connections to life in present day, they start to understand their true purpose of having been sent there…

My favorite parts were the historical parts. The author described the setting well, and made me really feel like I was part of history. Obviously, a lot of research went into creating this book, and it shows.

There’s also some romance, and that too is intermixed with the time travel element, rebirth and past lives, and I really liked that, it made me think about things I hadn’t considered before when reading time travel book.

Along with engaging characters and a believable historical setting, this book also offers solid writing. Escape into the past for a while, and enjoy reading.
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