Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year: Goal Accomplished!

Happy New Year to you and yours! Hopefully 2014 will be even better and brighter than 2013!

I'm very proud to boast about the reading goal that I met this year-well, surpassed actually. Check it out:

May all of your goals, hopes, and wishes be fulfilled in the coming year. ;)

Top 10 Series Authors of 2013

It's impossible for me to decide what books are my favorite, especially for any given year. I read a lot, and I have varied interests, so it's a challenge to compare a zombie book to an erotica book to a zombie erotica book. I thought I would do a list (in no particular order) of my favorite authors this year. Here we go:

1. Kit Rocha
Beyond Shame (Beyond, #1)
Beyond Control (Beyond, #2)
Beyond Pain (Beyond, #3)
Beyond Denial (Beyond, #2.5)
Kit Rocha is really two writers, and they write the Beyond series, a post apocalyptic, kick ass, tatted up, hedonistic erotica series. You need to be reading this series if you aren't.

2. R.K. Lilley
Bad Things (Tristan & Danik...

Rock Bottom (Tristan & Dani...
R.K. Lilley is known for the Up in the Air series featuring super alpha and billionaire Dom James Cavendish. There are a lot of great characters in this world, however, and the spin off series, Tristan and Danika takes a closer look at two of the most compelling people. Lilley upped seriously her game, and I am chomping at the bit for more.

3. Madeline Sheehan
Undeniable (Undeniable, #1)
Unbeautifully (Undeniable, #2)
Unattainable (Undeniable, #3)
Madeline Sheehan is the author of the Undeniable series, set in a gritty MC (motorcycle club). The popularity of Sons of Anarchy with women created a demand for good MC books, and Sheehan has the best series out there. These books feature the most damaged, raw, emotional, and disturbing characters. I love every second of it.

4. Kelley Armstrong
Bitten (Women of the Otherw...
Stolen (Women of the Otherw...
Kelley Armstrong started a new series this past year, but my reason for having her on this list relates to the series that she actually ended last year, the Otherworld series. This was one of my favorite Urban Fantasy series to read, and when I heard she was ending it, I was sad, but understood. However, the news that it had been picked up as a television show gave me new life and a chance to reread the whole series - it holds up.

5. Kylie Scott

Flesh (Flesh, #1)
Skin (Flesh, #2)
Room With a View: Hot Down ...
Kylie Scott put two of my favorite themes together-erotica and zombies. In her Flesh series, the zombie apocalypse has come and the stories of the things that people do to survive (and how they connect) is a compelling read, indeed.

6. Krista and Becca Ritchie 
Addicted to You (Addicted, #1)
Ricochet (Addicted, #1.5)
Addicted for Now (Addicted,...
The Ritchies are authors of one of my favorite new series this past year, Addicted.  It's about two old friends who have faked a relationship to their affluent families to cover up her sex addiction and his alcoholism. However, the stakes change when they start to develop real feelings for each other and have to figure out how to not be co-dependent. So. Good.

7. Katy Evans
Real (Real, #1)
Mine (Real, #2)
Remy (Real, #3)
There are a lot of stories around about damaged athletes-MMA fighters, boxers, etc. Remy is a cut above the rest. He is bi-polar, and blacks out, and goes nutballs sometimes. In this series, Katy Evans makes us fall in love with him despite all that drama.

8. Kristen Ashley
Own the Wind (Chaos, #1)
Fire Inside (Chaos, #2)
Kristen Ashley wrote a few series that I enjoyed this year, like Unfinished Hero and The 'Burgh, but her Motorcycle Club series Chaos was my favorite thing to read. Conveying love, drama, emotions, and mystery are the things she is a master at.

9. J. Kenner
Release Me (Stark Trilogy, #1)
Claim Me (Stark Trilogy, #2)
Complete Me (Stark Trilogy,...
Take Me (Stark Trilogy, #3.5)
J. Kenner introduced us to Damian Stark, a former tennis player turned tycoon alpha male who saw Nikki Fairchild and moved heaven and earth to acquire, dominate, and retain her. So sexy and original ad mist generic kinky millionaire tropes.

10. M. Leighton
Down to You (The Bad Boys, #1)
Up to Me (The Bad Boys, #2)
Everything for Us (The Bad ...
The romantic triangle got a fresh twist in The Bad Boys series by M. Leighton. Cash and Nash are polar opposites- one a rough bar owner and the other a lawyer on his way to making partner. Olivia Townsend finds herself stuck in the middle of the two of them and she has to make a choice, but there are a lot of secrets yet to be revealed. So fun and I figured out the twist (which I love to do!) without feeling like the characters were idiots for not figuring it out. Well done!

The Best of the Rest
I thought it wouldn't be fair to use up three slots in my top ten as these women are on my auto-buy list because I. Love. Their. Books.

Nalini Singh's Psy/Changeling Series
Sylvia Day's Crossfire Series
and of course:
JR Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood Series

Honorable Mentions:
Samantha Young's On Dublin Street Series
Joanna Wylde's Reaper's MC Series

I thought having a top ten would make me limit myself but I basically did a top fifteen. Whatever! There are a lot of great authors out there, and here's to finding more in 2014!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Book Review: Luke Series

This is an overall review of the Luke series by Cassia Leo. A fast paced sexy read, it gets a strong 4/5 stars from me!

Mirror (Luke, #1) Mirror (Luke #1) by 

Brina Kingston is on assignment-find out what tech giant Luke Maxwell's top secret revelation is going to be before he presents it to the masses. Brina works for NeoSys, Maxwell's top competitor, and they have set her up to be his new executive assistant. What no one anticipated was the instant attraction that the two had for each other.

Memory (Luke, #2) Memory (Luke #2) by 

Luke and Brina have been going hot and heavy for a week now, and despite their chemistry, Brina feels like Luke may know exactly who she is and what she's doing. Luke throws a party for his staff on his boat, and almost too conveniently, a phone from a high level techie in Luke's company gets left behind. Brina has a choice to make-turn the phone over and betray the man she is falling in love with, or keep the phone and get busted by her colleague.

Linked (Luke, #3) Linked (Luke #3) by 

Brina is still holding on to the phone, and her colleague Milo finally finds out about it. He gives her a deadline to hand over the information, or else he will have her pulled off the assignment. Brina is conflicted, but resolves that she must tell Luke the truth. They have admitted their love for each other, and things are getting to the boiling point.

Password (Luke, #4) Password (Luke #4) by 

Brina didn't get a chance to tell Luke the truth before everything went to hell. It's been weeks, she lost both of her jobs, and is forced to move back in with her parents. Milo was fired as well, but wants to make it up to Brina by getting her access to Luke's big reveal. Luke has figured out by now that Brina had extenuating circumstances, but can they make things work when other people are in the picture?

Timeout (Luke, #5) Timeout (Luke #5) by 

Luke and Brina decide to give it another shot, but came up with a plan. They would go on a Timeout with each other, meaning no sex for a month, in order to get to know each other better. If their relationship could survive that, then they could survive anything.

I enjoyed this a lot! Luke (and even Milo) typified what I already knew to be true-geeks are hot. Luke and Brina had an instant attraction love affair, so if those kind of stories aren't your cup of tea, then this isn't for you. Milo was pretty sexy too, talk about going from zero to hero! I'm glad there was a resolution for him as well.  Great read.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Book Review: Take Me Series

This review is about all three of the books in the Take Me series by Colleen Masters.  Apparently there is a 4th coming as well. The overall series get a 3.5/5 stars.

Faster Harder (Take Me..., #1) Faster Harder (Take Me... #1) by 

In Faster Harder we meet Siena Lazio, a princess in the Formula 1 worldwide car racing circuit. As PR Director for Team Farrelli, she manages her brother's media and is part of the Lazio dynasty in the sport. Her brother is a well known top driver and her father, the team's manager and strategist, is also a former top driver. The men in her life have always treated her as a child, and not like a woman in her mid-20's.

Harrison Davies is a legacy of a different sort. He has been kept out of the limelight since his father, a former racer, drunk himself to death. He was groomed since the age of 11 to be a top driver, and when he meets the famous Siena Lazio in a club in Barcelona, he keeps his exact position on Team McClain from her. They have an instant connection, and pretty soon, a rivalry between Harrison and Siena's brother Enzo shakes up the circuit. Unable to leave Harrison alone, they keep their Romeo and Juliet romance a secret.

This was a great intro to the racing world. Despite editing errors, it was a fun read, with a cliffhanger at the end. 4 stars.

Faster Deeper (Take Me..., #2) Faster Deeper (Take Me... #2) by 

In this second entry, Siena and Harrison are hot and heavy, but someone is on to them, and has been since they first met. A barrage of photos was sent to Siena's phone with a warning to stay away from Harrison, or else. After much hand-wringing about how to handle this threat, the two decide to double down on the secrecy of their relationship instead of coming clean.

After someone leaks the photos to Enzo, things take a turn for the worse, but unfortunately the trouble is just beginning. This book was a bit meatier than the others but the dubious choices of the characters was starting to wear me thin.

3.5 stars

Faster Longer by Colleen Masters Faster Longer (Take Me... #3) by 

Despite the intrigue and drama, it was an exercise in patience to finish this one. It was  extremely frustrating to have all the information the characters had, and for them to deliberately be obtuse about who was sabotaging the races and slinging their name in the mud. It was so obvious it was painful to listen to Siena lament about who it could be, over and over again. The saboteur and accomplices didn't even care to be discreet. Unfortunately, that overshadowed the book for me, but it didn't help that Enzo was being a complete ass and Siena wasn't able to use her PR skills for herself. TSTL pretty much describes most of the main characters.  It was a fun beginning, but it peters out in the end...and the cliffhanger isn't really a cliffhanger. It looks like some people enjoyed it, and I'm glad for that, but I've had my fill.
2.5 stars

Friday, December 20, 2013

Book Review: The Alpha Group Trilogy by Maya Cross

This will be reviews for all three novellas in The Alpha Group Trilogy. The whole trilogy gets 4/5 stars.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Book Review: Sweet Revenge

Sweet Revenge (Sins Brothers, #2) Sweet Revenge (Sins Brothers #2) by 
4.5 stars
The Sins Brothers series is about the Dean brothers who are genetically engineered soldiers that were raised from birth in lethal military camps. Having escaped 5 years ago, the brothers hope to find their youngest brother Jory, who may or may not be dead, and avoid the commander, who is trying to get them to return to the program. They have a limited timeline-in less than 2 months, chips implanted in their spines will explode. Sweet Revenge focuses on Matt, the oldest of the brothers and the one charged with finding the doctor who escaped the night they did 5 years ago. Intel leads him to a quaint city named Charmed.

Matt takes one look at bar owner Laney and knows he wants her-and doesn't hide that fact. He has taken care of his brothers for years, and never wanted anything in return for it, it was his duty, but when he looks at Laney he sees something just for himself. Laney has some secrets of her own. She knows that Matt is huge, hot, and nothing but trouble. She needs a bouncer to handle the bikers coming through Charmed since her bouncer and barmaid eloped. Despite her ghosts, she wants to get with Matt in a bad way, even if it's only for the few weeks she needs help.

Problems for them both start when a serial killer starts stalking Laney, and as Matt's need to protect her increases, so does the danger. When they discover their secrets may tear them apart, it tests the mettle of their relationship. This was fast paced action, hot passion, and alpha male yumminess. Matt is typical of the bigger they are, the harder they fall, and I loved every second of that. Laney was smart and no shrinking violet, yet she was not TSTL and I always respect that in a strong heroine. Great read, and I can't wait until spring for the next installment. 

Friday, December 13, 2013

Scandal Recap: A Door Marked Exit

This week Kwana Minatee-Jackson recaps the happenings from Scandal's mid season finale over at Heroes and Heartbreakers, but for now, here is my rundown:

1. Daniel Douglas was talking an AWFUL lot of shit before Sally ganked him. Apparently too much. Now we will only see him in pictures and flashbacks.

2. Um Liv, just because your mom is a worse monster than your dad doesn't mean your dad isn't a monster. Have a few seats.

3. I know you wanted to get into Command's head, but telling any man you know that you are screwing his daughter, every chance you get, and that you can tell him how she tastes is just damn rude. Expect to be clowned.

Fitz be like

4. Jake was on FIRE last night. First he rightfully put Olivia in her place:

Then he somehow got the drop on Eli:

5. Quinn thought bygones were bygones, but Huck told her she only had teef and bref because of Olivia:

6. Finally, Black Carmen Sandiego