The Naughty Vixen

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Archive for the category “Shifters”

Howl by Brittney Dussault

“They say you have the power to see the truth, just by touching someone.  Go on, touch me.”

Howl-CoverTitle:  Howl

Author:  Brittney Dussault

Rate: C

After an archeology expedition gone wrong, Lis Santiago is assigned a desk job at The Library, an underground archive dedicated to the history and study of supernatural creatures. Run by humans, the joke about The Library is that it’s operated by people who know everything about magic… except how to use it. Lis is no exception, and after three years, she’s finally accepted her new, albeit lackluster, career. 
Then a request is made: Supernatural creatures in the area have gone missing, and the Alpha from the local werewolf pack wants a Librarian to aid in the investigation. But he doesn’t want just any Librarian, he wants Lis. Accepting means time away from her desk, but it also means having to be paired up with old partner Jonas Highet, who left her waiting for him in Italy five years ago. This isn’t the reunion she had in mind, but when the Alpha calls, it’s hard to say no.
Lis quickly wishes she had.
The Alpha already has a suspect, he just needs Lis to convict him… even if there’s no proof he’s guilty. But the Alpha’s sister thinks her brother’s scapegoat- a wolf named Mickey Kaiser- is innocent, and she wants Lis to prove it.
Caught between a pair of siblings known for their cunning ways, Lis is going to have to find out what’s so special about Mickey Kaiser, while simultaneously keeping Jonas from killing the man. And just when Lis starts dreaming about her desk job, the first body is found.
It’s unlike anything Lis has seen before.

Thoughts:  The premise behind this book is a good one –  I loved the sheer idea behind it.  Yet I found this book a continual source of frustration as it constantly left this feeling that you were missing something – I felt like I had jumped a few books into a series with a bunch of background history missing, allusions to character relationships and intimacies that I’d lost out on, and yet that was not the case since this is the first book in the series.  But that feeling lingered all throughout the book, and really tainted the whole experience for me.

Things like The Library – that I thought would play such a huge role – really didn’t feature as much as I thought they would in the scope the story, some things are brought up within the story and are just not mentioned again and you are left to wonder why they were even mentioned at all – and still other details  you left wondering why they aren’t explained in so much more depth as they were so pertinent to the story.  Just a lot of inconsistencies.   I also never really felt connected to the characters…you read the story, but never got fully enveloped within it.

I like – and still like – the idea of it more than the actual execution of it.

Excerpt:  “H-hi,” Lis said, because when in the presence of such delectable, smug attractiveness, she found it difficult to communicate like a normal, grown-ass woman. She figured everyone had their vices.

 Tall, dark, and handsome with an emphasis on the tall, dark, and handsome, the leather clad babe standing before her was good looking enough she could almost forget he was a werewolf detective. But while the wolves might call themselves detectives, she knew they only did one thing- hunt. She, like always, was not on the menu.

“I’m guessing you’re my partner?” she said when her brain started working again.  The man ran his eyes over her body in a way that made her both shiver and roll her eyes.

He scrunched his nose in distaste and she scoffed.

“The day I ask you for sartorial advice, Highet,” she snapped as she marched over to her bedroom, “is the day hell freezes over.”

“Better dress warm, then.”

Jonas Highet looked like sin, had a voice that was a temptation all on its own, and to top it all off, he knew it. In Lis’ experience, there was nothing more dangerous than an attractive man who knew he was attractive. Even more so, one who knew how to use his beauty to his advantage. It seemed to be a talent all werewolves possessed.

“I swear,” Lis muttered under her breath as she changed out of her pantsuit and into something a little more suitable to a night spent running after a werewolf who couldn’t deduce worth shit.

“Tick tock,” said Jonas. “The Alpha is expecting us.”

Lis sneered before grabbing her jacket from him, not having bothered to close the screen to her bedroom because Jonas had seen her naked enough times over the years and had only shown a level of interest that could be classified as clinical. Actually, no. Lis was pretty sure she’d seen doctors more attentive than the werewolf now following her out of her apartment.

“For the record,” Jonas said as he trailed after her, “I didn’t request to be your partner.”

Lis stopped halfway down a step and looked up at him.

“Good thing we got that out of the way.”

If she hadn’t known it already, his statement had confirmed it: It was going to be a long night.

 

 

 

Her Purrfect Match by Milly Taiden

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Title:  Her Purrfect Match

Author:  Milly Taiden

Release Date:  October 24, 2014

Blurb:  Paranormal Dating Agency Book 3 (STANDALONE)

Alyssa Moran is tired of being the old cat lady with no man. She has very specific needs and goes to visit Mrs. Wilder at the Paranormal Dating Agency. Shockingly enough, she is promised a man who likes cats, wants kids, likes curves and will be wild in bed.

Grayson Green needs a mate. Fast. But he refuses to be pushed into anything. That is, until a curvy funny woman shows up in his territory saying she’s there for him. Who is he to argue when someone as delectable as Alyssa decides she wants to give herself to him?

Of course, not all is at it seems and some people want Alyssa gone and Gray dead. If Gray mates, the future of his pride will be sealed and no one can argue his place as leader. Unless it can be stopped before they ever get a chance to make some cubs. He will have to work hard at convincing a human she’s the only one for him or lose his pride and his mate.

Reader Note: This book contains scorching sex (the kind that will make you sweat and need ice cream), adult language (he’s a very dirty talker and we like it), and violence. If this is not the kind of stuff you like to read, skip this book. However, if you like dirty, raunchy sex with a growly tiger on one funny curvy girl, then this is right up your alley. Enjoy!

Buy Link:  Amazon

Excerpt:  Once Tally had gone, Gerri ordered some tea and pulled out a notebook. “Let’s talk.”

Lyss swallowed hard. “What about?”

“Why what you want in a man, of course.” Gerri placed her elbow on the table and cupped her chin with her hand, tapping a finger on her cheek. “I know you said you wanted a man that likes cats.”

She nodded quickly. “He has to. Or at least not be allergic and not be bothered by them.”

“A man who likes pussy,” Gerri said as she wrote. “Got it.”

Lyss blinked. Then she burst into giggles.

Gerri gave her a side smile. “You got that, huh?”

“Heck yeah. I definitely need a man who likes erm…that. You know, Tally had said you were unique, but wow.”

10675526_776798829025047_2671880493088824198_n (1)

Smiley by Laurann Dohner

“I’m turned on.  I rumble.  It’s a good thing.”

51av6l+bzcLTitle:  Smiley

Author:  Laurann Dohner

Rate: A

Vanni is furious when her fiancé tricks her into attending a conference where his father’s church is protesting the New Species Organization. She hates everything those vile bigots stand for. Vanni goes to the bar to cool off and ends up seated next to a handsome New Species. Things heat up fast when they are both drugged.

Smiley doesn’t want to believe the sweet human would dose them with the breeding drug. He’s willing to trust her and determined to save her life. He’ll hold her. Protect her. Offer up his body to distract them both from the pain. She is his female, even if she doesn’t realize it yet.

Thoughts:  Laurann Dohner and her New Species series is my absolute favorite series right now, and Smiley is a beautiful change of pace from Darkness.  Darkness started to make me feel as if the series was starting to wan a bit, but Smiley threw that idea right out the window.  Vanni made for a beautiful, but innocent pawn, being given a human version of breeding drug in a bar along with Smiley who is also drugged.  The ploy is caught early enough that the only ones made to suffer are Vanni and Smiley – which makes some very erotic and steamy moments between these two!  The drugs have them turned on in for each other in no time flat, and – Oh, wow – the chemistry between these two practically leaps off the pages!  You may just need some cool down time yourself afterward…;)

This one is a steamy read that’s for sure. 

I loved seeing this series get back on track.  It was just a whole different pace in comparison to the whole series, and stood out on its own in comparison to all the rest.  With thirteen books in this series, I can honestly say that this is one of those few that will stick out with the other fan favorites in the long term that I will remember overall.  Smiley was a hit  for this series – LOVED IT!

Geek Bearing Gifts by Milly Taiden

“Did you know…That your eyes are the color of smooth milk chocolate and as bright as a thousand stars?”

91oM86+0ZJL._SL1500_Title:  Geek Bearing Gifts

Author:  Milly Taiden

Rate: B

Nita Islas wants to find love. She’s tired of the superficial relationships and is ready to give true romance a try. She uses the Paranormal Dating Agency and hopes they can help her where all others have failed. What she didn’t expect was to find her date flat on his back in nothing more than a towel.
Ky Stone has been in love with curvy and funny Nita since they were in High School. When she moved away, she took his heart with her. Then one day Ky wakes up to find her leaning over him. He’s sure he’s died and gone to heaven. He has no idea what she’s doing there, but he’s sure as hell not letting her leave.
Fate, meddling family and the PDA have brought them together again. The chemistry between them is explosive. But there’s problems with Ky’s neighboring clan and he’s keeping secrets from Nita. He needs to find a way to open up to her or lies and unexpected danger could tear them apart…forever. 

Thoughts:  There were things I really liked about this book, but some things that really just didn’t work for me.  I love the whole ‘crush’ angle of the story, with Ky knowing that Nita was the one for him since they were teens.  What didn’t work for me?  The fact that she had a crush on Ky too, but yet doesn’t connect this Ty with the Ty of the past.  I mean, it doesn’t even cross her mind at all (not even a hint of, “Could this be…?  No, it can’t be!”)  Some things also just seemed thrown in to add conflict, but it was half-hearted.  Rival clan sneaking onto the bear clans land….fights and violence….repeat.  It just seemed there could have been a whole lot more to this story.  On all levels.

This would not be one of my favorites of Taiden’s work.  I loved the idea of it, but it just never came to fruition.  It was short, underdeveloped, and just left me wanting a whole lot more from this story.

Excerpt:  “So you see, I want a man that will be interested in me as a person. Not just for sex. Not for money, which I don’t have. Not for whatever he might think he can get out of me. I want to be wanted for the woman inside. And I sure as hell want to be wanted sexually too.”

Mrs. Wilder cocked her head to the side, staring at her with her soulful eyes. “Darling, there are many sides to you. Your beauty, your body, your wit, your abilities at work. What do you want to focus on if anything in particular?”

She leaned back on the sofa, the seat dipping under her butt. The leather squeaked with the weight of her body. “I want more than sex. Don’t get me wrong, sex is great.”

Mrs. Wilder snorted, her eyes turned bright with amusement. Her lips twisted in a smirk and a

small dimple showed on her right cheek. She appeared even younger when she smiled. “Sex is amazing when done correctly. Especially if he can figure out how to be all alpha and make your legs shake.”

Oh, damn! She choked on the cookie she’d taken a bite of, chocolate spewing from her lips with each cough. She picked up a napkin and tried to clear her throat. Mrs. Wilder was a freak.

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Full Circle by Chudney Thomas

“Is that code for watching a movie and jumping my bones?”

cover54277-mediumTitle:  Full Circle

Author:  Chudney Thomas

Rate: B

He’s waited years for her…In a pack of werewolves, a half human isn’t exactly at the top of the food chain. Half-human, half-werewolf, Ria Marlett knows her place in the pack. And she knows exactly how the pack’s alpha, Drake Neilson, views her; as a convenient lay. So far she’s managed to avoid his advances, but she knows his patience is growing thin. 
Now he’s ready to claim her…Ria does her best to avoid Drake, but the sexy woman can’t hide who she is. Tired of waiting, now he’ll do whatever it takes to win Ria, even woo her while dealing with rabid lone wolf attacks. With the pack in danger Ria is forced to face what Drake has been telling her all along, she just might be the strongest of the pack. 

Thoughts:  Okay – the bad news?  This is not going to be one of those stand out paranormal/shifter books that has you clamoring for more or has you raving about what an awesome read it was.  The good news?  It’s a decent read, short read that may just get better as the series goes on.

If I’m being honest, this one falls a little into forgettable territory.  In a genre with shifters and supernatural beings – that is rife with so many possibilities – there is nothing that really stands out.  There is not a whole lot of action or drama…mostly just Drake trying to convince Ria that she is his mate.  What ground the author gains with the character of Drake, she loses with Ria.  I didn’t mind so much that she was a half-human/half-werewolf….she could still be a strong character.  Unfortunately, she comes across as submissive, a doormat, and not capable of leading along-side the alpha.  While I get that the Pack is supposed to see her that way, and that Drake sees more, I want to see what he sees in her….I want the author to show me the hidden depths of her character.  Now, of course, this is a really short read…only 75 pages….which doesn’t really lend itself to that kind of character development.  Hopefully, we can see more growth of character (and of author) in future books in this series….and it is obvious that this is just meant to be the start of a bigger series.  Let’s hope the series gets better and better as it goes along…:)

 

 

Ritual Magic by Eileen Wilks

Feelings are not always a guide to truth, and guilt is an indulgence you cannot afford. It clouds the mind.”

81VANeQxSxL._SL1500_Title:  Ritual Magic (World of the Lupi Book #10)

Author:  Eileen Wilks

Rate:  C

In Eileen Wilks’s new Novel of the Lupi, FBI agent Lily Yu is about to confront a power even darker than magic…On her 57th birthday, Lily’s mother suddenly loses all memory beyond the age of twelve. Lily knows her mother was attacked by something more than magic. More . . . and darker.
When Lily and Rule discover that others suffered the same, mysterious loss—at the same time on the same night—their investigation into the darkness begins. Joining them is someone Lily never thought she’d see again: Al Drummond, who once tried to destroy her. He also happens to be dead. But the mysterious attacks were caused by a power strong enough to affect matters beyond the world of the living.
With some victims losing years of memory and others their lives, Lily must discover what on earth—or beyond—connects them. 

Thoughts:  To be honest, I dragged my heels when it came to getting this book….and then dragged them some more when it came to actually reading it.  I absolutely loved this series in the beginning, but it has become one of those series that has started to lose its spark for me.  Part of me feverently hoped that this would be the book that sets it back on track….and yet another dreaded it because I feared it would be the final straw for me with the series.  Unfortunately, it seems to be the latter for me.

With most other series, it usually comes down to just the whole plotline/story just not living up to the spectacular standards set by the previous books.  What makes this series a bit odd for me is instead it seems to be a loss of the integral part of the characters – now, in the tenth book, I honestly have forgotten why I loved these characters so much.  It doesn’t even seem like I am even reading about the same people anymore.  And that is truly a sad state of affairs since the characters used to be so vibrant.  The story is still a good one – but I miss the connection that used to exist for these characters – for example, Lily and Rule could almost be strangers they seem so different from who they used to be.  Not to mention their real, true interactions are few and far between.  It’s almost like now that they are together romantically, the author doesn’t know how to write them anymore.

I doubt I can handle reading another book in this series – it just reminds me of what is missing from those amazing books in the beginning.

 

 

Darkness by Laurann Dohner

“I want you so bad sometimes I have to fight myself not to take you.”

51cJbMJPwPLTitle:  Darkness

Author:  Laurann Dohner

Series: New Species Series # 12

Rate:  A

Kat’s boss wants dirt on the NSO. She is sent to Homeland undercover but everything goes wrong as soon as she enters the front gates. She is arrested by a big, powerful, sexy New Species but she is not frightened. He turns her on and things heat up fast between them. Now, she just hopes he doesn’t break her heart.

Darkness admires Kat’s courage but he cannot trust anything she says. He hasn’t been with a female for years because he knows he is too damaged. He is not mate material, despite his desire to possess her in every way. Darkness fears losing control—the one thing that defines his life. He doesn’t think he can tear down the protective walls he’s built, even for her.

ThoughtsAs always, this was a great addition  to the New Species series – and I love Laurann Dohner!  No matter what she writes it is amazing.  With that being said, i have to admit that Darkness was a bit different than what I was expecting.  For me, it was similar to a lot of the other titles – that’s not a bad thing, but I wanted a little more.  This one doesn’t stand out as one of the top ones in the series, but it’s not bad either – it’s an okay title in an amazing series.

Personally, I can’t wait to get one featuring a female species – I can’t wait to see that interesting twist!  And it might liven the series back up.  This one has me hoping that the series is not starting to go a little stale – and I sincerely hope that is not the case as this is my favorite series right now.  But it has been known to happen (especially when it comes to series that go on for this long).  I guess we’ll see when Smiley comes out in a few weeks!

 

 

Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews

 ““Fortune favors the brave,” I told her. It also kills the stupid, but I decided to keep that fact to myself.”

910JVdA9UFL._SL1500_Title:  Magic Breaks (Kate Daniels series Book #7)

Author:  Ilona Andrews

Rate:  A+

No matter how much the paranormal politics of Atlanta change, one thing always remains the same: if there’s trouble, Kate Daniels will be in the middle of it…As the mate of the Beast Lord, Curran, former mercenary Kate Daniels has more responsibilities than it seems possible to juggle. Not only is she still struggling to keep her investigative business afloat, she must now deal with the affairs of the pack, including preparing her people for attack from Roland, a cruel ancient being with god-like powers. Since Kate’s connection to Roland has come out into the open, no one is safe—especially those closest to Kate.  As Roland’s long shadow looms ever nearer, Kate is called to attend the Conclave, a gathering of the leaders from the various supernatural factions in Atlanta. When one of the Masters of the Dead is found murdered there, apparently at the hands of a shapeshifter, Kate is given only twenty-four hours to hunt down the killer. And this time, if she fails, she’ll find herself embroiled in a war which could destroy everything she holds dear…
**Includes the bonus Kate Daniels story Magic Tests** 

Thoughts:  When it comes to a series of books, I have to admit that the Kate Daniels series  is one of my absolute favorites!  For those who follow it, there are so many things that happen in this book that it is simply a must read.  The danger they face is far more potent in this book, as Kate faces not only the not-so-dead Hugh, but also her father.  They finally come face-to-face in this book, and that alone would render it worth reading.  But will Kate finally kill him (as she has been raised all her life to do)?  Or will fate – and Kate’s self-sacrificing personality – choose a different path?  In some ways, the meeting with Roland went kind of how I was expecting (though I think it may surprise a few) – but the decisions that are made after meeting Roland is what surprised me.  And I have to say lead to some super-sweet moments in the book for me.

For those of you new to the series – OMG, you have no idea what you’re missing!  You simply have to read this series – starting from the very beginning!  This is one of those series I definitely recommend reading in order, but it is an amazing series – especially if you love urban fantasy. 

You honestly keep thinking this series just CAN’T get any better – but (as always) with Ilona Andrews, this husband and wife writing team proves that it definitely CAN.

*The bonus story is worth a read, too.  We get a little more insight into Julie and her life, and I look forward to seeing more of her world as well sometime in the future!*

Moonlight by Katie Salidas

818G6f7fJGL._SL1500_Title:  Moonlight (novella)

Series:  Immortalis Vampire Series Book #5

Author:  Katie Salidas

Rating:  C

Good girls don’t wear fur or fight over men, and they certainly don’t run around naked, howling at the moon.  But then, no-one ever called Fallon a good girl.  As a human unofficially mated to an Alpha werewolf, Fallon is being pressured to “become”… or be gone.  Her mate Aiden, the interim leader of the Olde Town Pack, is in a position that demands he either choose a wolf mate or leave the pack forever. No matter how hot the sex with Fallon is, he can’t ignore centuries of tradition.  Become a wolf or not: If only the choice were that simple! Fallon’s options are further clouded by the overt presence of other females desperate to be the Alpha’s mate. And when these bitches get serious, it’s not just claws that come out. If Fallon wants to keep her man and take the title, she’ll have to exert a little dominance of her own.

Review:  I am new to this series, and I had not realized that this was book 5 in a series before I started.  Given that, it was understandable that I found it a bit confusing at times.  I was also a bit confused and perturbed by the vibes I received while reading it as well – for the most part – at least to me – the story, dialogue, etc. read a bit like a new adult book, containing a certain level of immaturity.  However, it does contain adult content, and the odd mix of vibes from the book kindof left me not quite knowing what to think of it.  All in all, I will definitely have to go back and try reading from book one and see if that changes my perceptions somewhat.

 

Her Wolf Menage by Louisa Bacio

61voYMxHgUL._SL1000_Title:  Her Wolf Ménage

Series:  The Vampire, the Witch, and the Werewolf Series Book #7

Author:  Louisa Bacio

Rating: C+/B-

She seeks adventure.  What’s the use of living in a wolf pack when one isn’t a shifter? Jana strikes out from Louisiana’s national forest to New Orleans to find herself, only to discover more questions.  They want the same woman.  The moment Jana steps into the French Quarter, Andre pursues the naïve beauty. An artist, he senses the hidden wolf beneath the surface, and her nature calls to him. It’s not until she leaves that long-time friend Dominick realizes what he wants. The two alpha weres must battle it out or learn to share to reach their happy ending. 

Review:  Okay, so the truth is that the blurb and the fact that it’s a shifter book sucked me into this one.  Supposedly, it is a stand alone title, but I’m not sure I agree with that.  It’s really a matter of perception, I suppose.  Can you read it without reading the other books?  Sure – and if you consider it enough to warrant ‘stand alone’ status, I guess you have it.  For me, however, if I find myself with a niggling feeling that I have missed something, or there are characters that I am wondering about and thinking ‘And what’s up with those two?’ – then to me it is not stand alone.  From the beginning, it was apparent that I had missed a lot – and that was not my only issue with the book.

My main pet peeve was just a lack of connection with the characters.  It was apparent when it came to all the characters, but especially the two male leads.  However, Dominick was the worst for me – I had a hard time with his character throughout the book….more so than any of the rest.  It also bounced around which left a distinct lack of focus on the main characters.  The books really focus more and encompass this whole world, not really giving the focus needed to these three characters and their particular story.

Don’t get me wrong, I like a series built on a strong world an encompassing a whole bunch of characters, but there still needs to be a majority focus on the main ones and I didn’t feel this was the case here.  I did enjoy the story…there were just a few things that bothered me that kept it from being really great.

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