Storm Gathering (Scorpius Syndrome #4) by Rebecca Zanetti-a review

STORM GATHERING (Scorpius Syndrome #4) by Rebecca Zanetti-a review

Storm Gathering

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About the book: Release Date September 19, 2017

Even before surviving the Scorpius bacterium, Greyson Storm was a lone wolf navigating minefields. As a kid, he learned to take a hit and find safety. As an adult, he joined the military and quickly learned how to protect and defend. When the world ended, he created a mercenary camp with military precision, no entanglements, and a promise to avenge a fallen friend. As part of that vow, he kidnapped Maureen Shadow, but now that he has let her go, her blue eyes and intriguing mind keep haunting him…

As possibly the only Biotechnology Engineer still living, Maureen Shadow might be humanity’s one hope to survive the aftermath of Scorpius, making her frighteningly valuable to both allies and enemies. Even after sexual tension explodes with Greyson, she’s not sure which camp he belongs to—friend or foe? Worse yet, survival may mean thwarting his prime mission, putting her in even more peril. When danger and seduction collide, there is no safety in this new world.

•••••••••

REVIEW: STORM GATHERING is the fourth full-length installment in Rebecca Zanetti’s  adult SCORPIUS SYNDROME cross genre Sci-Fi/ UF/Dystopian series focusing on a biological pandemic sweeping the planet that has already killed 99% of the world’s population. This is US Marine sniper Greyson Storm, and biotechnology engineer Maureen Shadow’s (Raze’s sister) story line that looks at life in the aftermath, and the fallout from an unknown bacteria-from space. For more background information and some history, there is a prequel novella-SCORPIUS RISING-which can be found in the ON THE HUNT anthology (August 2015).

NOTE: Some of the premise of STORM GATHERING runs parallel to and crosses over with the events of book three-Justice Ascending.

SOME BACKGROUND: Some of those infected with the biological virus have survived to become something known as a Ripper, but there are two types of Rippers inhabiting the world-one is a zombie like creature who feasts on the living; the other is a survivor whose brain has been altered resulting in a stronger, more powerful enhanced human being sometimes bordering on the sociopath ideology with delusions of grandeur, obsession and hate. If you are a fan of the series The Walking Dead (or Mad Max), you will see many similarities in the story line premise including the search for food and supplies, attacks of the ‘undead’, and various groups of survivors vying for power and control.

Told from several third person perspectives including Greyson and Maureen STORM GATHERING continues to focus on the struggle to survive as the depleting inventory at the Vanguard compound and Mercenary territories begins to push at the fragile hold each has on their safety, sanity and dwindling reserves. As head of the ‘Merc’ faction of post-apocalyptic warriors Greyson Storm is desperate to find more food and weapons for his growing population of forgotten refugees. Enter biotechnology engineer Maureen Shadow and the woman with whom Greyson will fall in love. What ensues is the back and forth, tepid relationship between the Vanguard compound and Mercenary territory; the struggle in their search for supplies; and the continuing attacks by the government’s Elite Forces, and the self-proclaimed president of the USA- a man once infected by the Scorpius virus who has since become a sociopathic Ripper. Greyson Storm is on a mission not only to protect the woman that he loves but to take down a tyrant desperate to take control of the few remaining resources .

The relationship between Greyson and Maureen begins as a one-night stand following Maureen’s abduction from the Vanguard compound. Greyson’s attempts to secure a future for the many mouths he has to feed finds our hero taking risks including the kidnapping of the woman with whom he will fall in love. The $ex scenes are intimate and provocative without the use of over the top, sexually graphic language and text. The sexual attraction is palpable; their energy is passionate and sensual. Greyson’s protective instinct goes into over-drive where our story line heroine is concerned.

There is a large ensemble cast of secondary and supporting characters including Tace and Sami (Justice Ascending), Vivi and Raze (Shadow Falling) , Lynn and Jax (Mercury Striking), as well as Greyson’s second in command Damon Winter, Marcus and Dr. Penelope. The requisite evil, aside from the Scorpius virus, has many faces including President Bret Atherton, and his Vice President Lake. Damon Winter’s story is next in Winter Igniting.

The world building continues to focus on the search for a cure. With the growing number of scientists and researchers under protection at the Vanguard Compound and Mercenary headquarters, the intrepid group of survivors starts locating some of the hidden files that focus on the bacteria and a potential cure. A possible merger between the two camps may be required if everyone is to survive the ongoing wars, and the raging wild fires burning out of control.

STORM GATHERING is an edgy, encouraging and engaging story line. The premise will captivate your attention; the characters are colorful, animated and determined; the romance is hopeful and seductive.

Reading Order and Previous Reviews
Scorpius Rising (On the Hunt Anthology)
Mercury Striking
Shadow Falling
Justice Ascending
Storm Gathering

Copy supplied through Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

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Blight by Alexandra Duncan – a Review

Blight by Alexandra Duncan – a Review

 

BlightAmazon / B&N / Kobo / BAM / Book Depository

Description:
Seventeen-year-old Tempest Torres has lived on the AgraStar farm north of Atlanta since she was found outside the gates at the age of five. Now she’s part of the security force guarding the fence and watching for scavengers—people who would rather steal genetically engineered food from the company than work for it. When a group of such rebels accidentally sets off an explosion in the research compound, it releases into the air a blight that kills every living thing in its path—including humans. With blight-resistant seeds in her pocket, Tempest teams up with a scavenger boy named Alder and runs for help. But when they finally arrive at AgraStar headquarters, they discover that there’s an even bigger plot behind the blight—and it’s up to them to stop it from happening again.

 

 

Review:

Blight by Alexandra Duncan is the first book in her new YA dystopian series.  We have not heard if this book will be a series, but having completed the book, and read the ending, I do suspect there will be more to come.

Tempest Torres, our young heroine, lives on AgraStar, a research and development area that creates genetically engineered food.  Tempest, who was left at the gate when she was 5, is now 17 and a member of the security forces for Agrastar.  When scavengers try to break into the compound to steal food, Tempest shoots one of them to scare them off.  She joins one of the older groups for a short trip, excited to be included.  While on the expedition, an explosion takes place that destroys the compound, with both people and crops destroyed.  When her team fights off the attackers, she is captured, as the rest of her team is killed.  Because she killed one of the scavengers, they mark her for death.  Tempest will escape, and as she comes across different groups besides the AgraStar, and scavengers, she will see a different world that she was not prepared for. 

Alder, one of the scavengers, who wanted to kill Tempest, will join with her find a way to survive.  They, despite their differences, they will become friends, and help each other.  Tempest does not believe Alder’s stories about AgraStar being bad, and she maintains her loyalty, but at the same time will protect Alder, since he saved her life.  As the Blight continues to move toward other areas, Tempest is determined to bring to the main headquarters of AgraStar the seeds that will stop the destruction.

When she is rescued, Tempest will meet the woman who claims she is her mother; it seems her father stole her when she was 5, and the mother grieved over her loss.  She will meet her younger sister, who resembles her, as well as a young man, whom also looks like the boy she had a crush on back home.  Tempest’s mother is a high ranking scientist, which puts Tempest on higher echelon ; but she is worried about Alder, and wants to save him.  What follows is at first an exciting adventure, which will become a interesting discovery with a few twists that will change everything.  Tempest was a very good heroine, who must decide what is real and where does she belong.  As I said earlier, the ending is not a cliffhanger, but does leave things open.  I know that I for one want to know what happens next.  This was a very good YA dystopian storyline, very well written by Alexandra Duncan.

Reviewed by Barb

Copy provided by Publisher

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Cracked Open ( Mindjack #5) by Susan Kaye Quinn-a review

CRACKED OPEN (Mindjack #5) by Susan Kaye Quinn-a review

Cracked Open

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ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date July 15, 2017

Zeph always knew he was a weapon. He didn’t count on being a spy.
But he made a dangerous bargain with the Director of the Jacker Technologies Division of DARPA—he’d let Wright test his mutant mindjack ability if she’d release his parents. Simple. Occasionally painful. And the screams of his victims fill his nightmares. But it will be worth it as long as she can’t crack open his head and find out his sister, with her super-surge jack-ability, is still alive. And if his parents are finally set free.

Once that happens, he’s gone. Even if it means giving up everything he’s just now getting back. A home. Friends. A girl who believes in peace and love even when the world is falling apart.

But as the shock of assassinations and bombings and hate killings continue to pull at the threads that hold society together, Wright hands him a mission he can’t possibly complete. If he does, it will tear everything apart. If he doesn’t, he’ll lose everyone he loves.

Sometimes being a powerful weapon is the most dangerous thing of all.

•••••••••••

REVIEW: CRACKED OPEN is the fifth full-length installment in Susan Kaye Quinn’s young adult (YA) MINDJACK urban fantasy, sci-fi, dystopian series. CRACKED OPEN is the continuing story focusing on mindjacker Zeph MacCay- a young man with the ability to lock down, unlock or scramble the human mind.

SOME BACKGROUND: In a world where mindreading is the norm (due to decades of contaminated or purposely poisoned water) there are those with more powerful abilities than most. These are their stories of discrimination, betrayal, retribution and control. Throughout the years the human population has developed various forms of mind-reading, mind altering and mind controlling abilities due to environmental toxins. And to complicate matters those without the ability to mindjack are purposely setting out to bring war between the have and the have-nots fearing for their own peace of mind.

Told from first person point of view (Zeph) CRACKED OPEN furthers the struggle of Zeph MacCay and his underground group of people hoping to take down the Director of the Jacker Technologies, as well as the man who has developed anti-jacker technology that renders the victim all but paralyzed or dead. CRACKED OPEN follows Zeph MacCay as he struggles to free his family, imprisoned by the Director of the Jacker Technologies, and his fraudulent assignment as boyfriend and bodyguard to the daughter of an evil technology giant. With help from a couple of rogue agents and soldiers, as well as his intrepid gang of underground jackers Zeph MacCay puts into a motion a series of events that place him on the anti-jacker radar, once and for all. Success is measured by the tiniest of wins and in the end their struggle is only going to get worse.

CRACKED OPEN is a comprehensive, intricate and action packed story line of discrimination, fear, power and control. Susan Kaye Quinn’s young adult MINDJACK series looks at the breakdown of humanity, the power of politics and control of the mind, and the people on the fringe trying to survive, one day at a time. Lives will be lost; minds will be broken; friendships and families will crumble and die. CRACKED OPEN is a powerful look at a possible future if and when chaos and oligarchy preside. Susan Kaye Quinn is a master storyteller

Reading Order and previous reviews
Mind Games (Mindjack Origins 1)
Open Minds
Closed Hearts
Free Souls
The Locksmith
The Handler/ The Scribe (Mindjack Origins 2 & 3)
Keeper (Mindjack Origins 4)
Locked Tight
Cracked Open
Broken Wide

Copy supplied for review.

Reviewed by Sandy

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Locked Tight (Mindjack #4) by Susan Kaye Quinn-a review

LOCKED TIGHT (Mindjack#4) by Susan Kaye Quinn-a review

Locked Tight

ebook only 99¢ Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date April 17, 2017

In a world filled with mindreaders, being a mindjacker is a good way to end up dead.

And Zeph is no ordinary jacker.

He can break open the toughest minds—or lock the weakest ones—but that just makes him a weapon every jacker Clan wants to control. To keep his family of mindreaders safe, Zeph does what his Clan leader says and tries to shut out the screams—but when jackers are revealed to the world, he has no choice but to hug his kid sister goodbye and leave home.

Passing for a reader is something Zeph does well, but when readers start changing into jackers and his family disappears, Zeph must return to a city filled with jackers who hate him, trick a mindware CEO into helping him, avoid a girl who knows him too well, and spy on the most powerful jacker in the state.

All without dying or revealing his abilities—or being caught in the firestorm of hate between jackers and readers that’s threatening to pull the world apart.

The bestselling Mindjack Series continues with an all new character and a world of mindreaders and mindjackers as you’ve never seen it before. LOCKED TIGHT is the first of three Mindjack novels from Zeph’s perspective. (See The Locksmith for Zeph’s origin story.)

 

••••••••••

REVIEW: LOCKED TIGHT is the fourth full –length installment in Susan Kaye Quinn’s young adult (YA) Mindjack urban fantasy, dystopian series. LOCKED TIGHT and the prequel novella The Locksmith are the beginning of a new arc in the Mindjack series. No longer focusing on jacker Kira Moore, the series shifts focus to eighteen year old mindjacker Zephyr MacCay who has the ability to lock down or unlock the human mind.

SOME BACKGROUND: In a world where mindreading is the norm (due to decades of contaminated or purposely poisoned water) there are those with more powerful abilities than most. These are their stories of discrimination, betrayal, retribution and control. The human population developed various forms of mind-reading, mind altering and mind controlling abilities. And to complicate matters those without the ability to mindjack are purposely setting out to bring war between the have and the have-nots.

Told from first person point of view (Zeph) LOCKED TIGHT follows eighteen year old mindjacker Zephyr MacCay as he searches for his family (and thirteen year old sister) he hasn’t seen in years-a family of mindreaders whose lives were threatened by the existence of their eldest son. Zephyr has the ability to hide his abilities but a threat of another nature finds our hero caught between three potential enemies never knowing who is telling the truth or out right lies. What ensues are Zeph’s attempts to locate his sister as several warring factions battle for control of Zephyr himself.

LOCKED TIGHT is an infinitely detailed, brilliant and remarkable look at a world struggling with the fall out of chemical contamination of the human population. From mindreaders to mindjackers Susan Kaye Quinn’s MINDJACKER series looks at the dysfunctional relationship between a hierarchy of mental and physical powers, and the breakdown of society between the ‘have and have nots’. The Mindjacker series focuses on betrayal, revenge, discrimination, specieism, and the battle for control, and the potential to create a weapon of unimaginable strengths. The premise is unparalleled with a profound and innovative message as well as a frighteningly realistic look at the future where fear and anarchy reign.

Reading Order and previous reviews
Mind Games (Mindjack Origins 1)
Open Minds
Closed Hearts
Free Souls
The Locksmith
The Handler/ The Scribe (Mindjack Origins 2 & 3)
Keeper (Mindjack Origins 4)
Locked Tight

Reviewed by Sandy

Copy supplied for review.

____________

The LocksmithTHE LOCKSMITH
Mindjack Origins #5-a novella
by Susan Kaye Quinn
Genre: YA, dystopian, UF

FREE ebook at Amazon :Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / BAM /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date February 9, 2015

SHORT NOVELLA (STANDALONE) in the Mindjack universe

When everyone reads minds, a secret is a dangerous thing to keep.

In a world filled with mindreaders, Zeph is a mindjacker who wants to stay hidden—even if it means the cute mindreader in his Latin class is forever out of his reach. He locks and unlocks minds for a ruthless mindjacker Clan in exchange for protection and the chance to have a normal life with his parents and little sister. But when a girl he doesn’t know reveals the existence of mindjackers to the world, Zeph is forced to make a choice: unlock—and ultimately destroy—the mind of a young jacker changeling… or turn his back on everyone he loves.

The Locksmith is a short novella (standalone) in the Mindjack universe. It can be read independently of the other Mindjack stories, in any order. It is 11,000 words (or 44 pages) long.

•••••••••••••

REVIEW: THE LOCKSMITH is the latest novella in Susan Kaye Quinn’s young adult Mindjack urban fantasy dystopian series.

In a world where mindreading is the norm (due to decades of contaminated water) there are those with more powerful abilities than most. These are their stories of discrimination, betrayal, retribution and control. The human population developed various forms of mind-reading, mind altering and mind controlling abilities. And to complicate matters, those without any special ability declare everyone with altered minds as an enemy of the state.

The novella focuses on Zeph, a young seventeen year old mindjacker who has the ability to lock down or unlock the human mind. As a mindjacker, Zeph has become part of a Clan and has been commanded to lock down the minds of potential Clan workers. When something goes horribly wrong, and Zeph is unable to stop the carnage, he runs-he has no plans to become the next victim of society’s ills.

Susan Kaye Quinn adds another dimension to her young adult Mindjack series. THE LOCKSMITH is a fast paced, quick read that will tease a new reader into wanting more. For fans of Susan’s Mindjack series, we are hoping that Zeph survives the upcoming fallout of the impending war.

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Sandy

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Justice Ascending (Scorpius Syndrome #3) by Rebecca Zanetti-a review

JUSTICE ASCENDING (Scorpius Syndrome #3) by Rebecca Zanetti- a review

Justice Ascending

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ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date January 31, 2017

Before surviving the Scorpius bacterium, Tace Justice was a good ole Texas cowboy who served his country and loved his mama. After Scorpius, the world became dark, dangerous, and deadly… and so did he. The Vanguard medic is stronger, faster, and smarter than before, but he’s lost the line between right and wrong. His passion is absolute, and when he focuses it on one woman, there’s no turning back for either of them.

Sami Steel has been fighting to survive right alongside Tace, convincing the Vanguard soldiers she’s one of them. In truth, Sami is a former hacker turned government agent who worked at The Bunker, where scientists stored both contaminants and cures. Only she knows the location, and she’s not telling. Yet when sexual fire explodes between her and Tace, she’ll face even that hell again to save him.

••••••••••

REVIEW: JUSTICE ASCENDING is the third full length installment in Rebecca Zanetti’s THE SCORPIUS SYNDROME cross genre Sci-Fi/ UF/Dystopian series focusing on a biological pandemic sweeping the world that has already killed 99% of the US population. This is former Texas cowboy and soldier Tace Justice, and former LAPD rookie Sami Steel’s story line that looks at life in the aftermath, and the fallout from an unknown bacteria-from space. The story line advances the series but a few days. For more background information and some history, there is a prequel novella-SCORPIUS RISING-which can be found in the ON THE HUNT anthology (August 2015).

SOME BACKGROUND: Some of those infected with the biological virus have survived to become something known as a Ripper, but there are two types of Rippers inhabiting the world-one is a zombie like creature who feasts on the living; the other is a survivor whose brain has been altered resulting in a stronger, more powerful enhanced human being sometimes bordering on the sociopath ideology with delusions of grandeur and hate. If you are a fan of the series The Walking Dead, you will see many similarities in the story line premise including the search for food and supplies, attacks of the ‘undead’, and various groups of survivors vying for power and control.

Told from several third person points of view JUSTICE ASCENDING focuses on the struggle to survive as the depleting inventory at the Vanguard compound threatens the survival of anyone seeking refuge. Tace Justice, along with many other members of the compound survived the virus but the resulting after affects are slowly killing our story line hero. Tace is a former army field medic and has been ordered to the Mercenary’s compound to offer medical aid following an attack by the Elite Force and the self-proclaimed president of the USA- a man once infected by the Scorpius virus who has since become a sociopathic Ripper. Enter Sami Steel, the woman that calls to Tace’s heart, and the woman sent to scope out the Mercs for some well needed supplies. What ensues is the building relationship between Sami and Tace, Tace’s struggle to keep secret his deteriorating condition, and the search for answers at the California Bunker.

The relationship between Tace and Sami is a friends to lovers scenario-sparring partners, and compound soldiers, Tace has always been attracted to the feisty Sami Steele-a woman who keeps her past a secret –a secret that could help save Tace’s life. Tace is a mercurial hero, a man who struggles with the dark demons that have affected his brain and his mind. The $ex scenes are erotic, intense and passionate-there are some scenes of spanking and discipline.

There is a large ensemble cast of secondary and supporting characters including Vanguard leader Jax Mercury and Lynne Harmony (Mercury Striking #1), mercenary Raze Shadow, and FBI profiler Vivienne (Vinnie) Wellington (Shadow Falling #2), as well as a number of soldier and people at the compounds both Vanguard and Mercenary. The Vanguard facility must contend with a growing number of people free of the virus hoping to keep themselves ‘pure’- the purists is a cult-like group who follow another self-proclaimed leader Pastor Zachary King who will protect his followers from the Scorpius virus. We are re- introduced to Damon Winter and Greyson Storm (leader of the Mercs) two men who struggle to keep their own people alive. The requisite evil includes President Bret Atherton, and his Elite Force of soldiers. Not everyone will survive.

JUSTICE ASCENDING is a story of survival set in a futuristic world where only the strongest survive; an action packed tale of death and destruction, love and loss, secrets and lies, struggle and freedom. New alliances are made; old enemies go down in flames. The premise is unique and imaginative; the characters are spirited, flawed and intense; the romance is passionate and challenging.

Reading Order and Previous Reviews

Scorpius Rising (On the Hunt Anthology)
Mercury Striking
Shadow Falling
Justice Ascending

Copy supplied by the publisher through Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

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Awakening (Stories of Singularity 5) by Susan Kaye Quinn-a review

AWAKENING (Stories of Singularity 5) by Susan Kaye Quinn-a review

Awakening

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ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date January 2, 2017

Sister Amara prays she won’t be the last of the twelve sisters to reach her awakening—after all, the salvation of their Masters depends on them. But with the interrogations growing more deadly, being last may be best… especially when you’ve been created to touch the face of God.

Awakening is a standalone novella that provides a glimpse into a dark corner of the Singularity novel series.

The Stories of Singularity can be read independently from the Singularity novel series.

READING ORDER
Singularity Series
The Legacy Human (Book 1)
The Duality Bridge (Book 2)
The Stories of Singularity #1-4 (Novella Box Set)
The Illusory Prophet (Book 3)

Stories of Singularity
(novellas)
Restore (Story 1)
Containment (Story 2)
Defiance (Story 3)
Augment (Story 4)
Awakening (Story 5)

•••••••

REVIEW: AWAKENING is the fifth novella in Susan Kaye Quinn’s young adult Stories of Singularity dystopian, sci-fic series- a companion series to Quinn’s Singularity Series. AWAKENING can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty.

BACKGROUND: The ‘Singularity’ resulted in most of the world’s population transforming themselves into a hybrid known as the Ascended-part man/part machine but the few remaining humans become what is known as the Legacy-the true descendants of humankind. The Singularity series looks at the struggle between the Ascended and everyone else.

Told from first person point of view (Sister Amara) AWAKENING follows Sister Amara as she ‘awakens’ to the world around her. A combination of artificial intelligence and cloistered humanoids ‘created to touch the face of God’, Sister Amara and eleven other ‘clones’ just like her are in a constant state of hyper vigilance as each approaches the famed ‘awakening’. But as the ‘experiment’s continue each sister will inevitably fail to reach her potential, and the people in charge will do anything to avoid an experimental disaster. Sister Amara is one of the few who will reach her potential (and beyond), and with it will gain her freedom from the onslaught of constant pain and strive for perfection.

AWAKENING is an intriguing look at the world of Singularity. An interesting and powerful concept born of the mind of Susan Kaye Quinn that focuses on humanity’s desire to live forever.

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Sandy

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Pocket Full of Tinder (Noon Onyx #4) by Jill Archer-a review

POCKET FULL OF TINDER (Noon Onyx #4) by Jill Archer-a review

Pocket Full of Tinder

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ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date December 15, 2016

Noon Onyx is back! In this long-awaited fourth installment, Jill Archer returns readers to the dangerous world of Halja, where demons, angels, and humans coexist in an uneasy state of détente.

Maegester-in-Training Noon Onyx feels like she’s done it all – mastered fiery magic, become an adept fighter, learned the law, killed countless demons, and survived having her heart broken by both love and an arrow, but now she’ll face her greatest challenge yet…

Far to the north lies an outpost famous for its unrest – Rockthorn Gorge. The town’s patron has specifically requested Noon’s help. Her assignment? Help the neophyte demon lord build his fiefdom and keep what’s his. The problem? Lord Aristos – Noon’s new employer – is her erstwhile lover, Ari Carmine, the aforementioned heart breaker. And the number one thing he wants is her.

When Rockthorn Gorge’s viaduct is destroyed by Displodo, an enigmatic bomber, killing a dozen settlers and wounding scores more, Noon sets off early to aid in the search and rescue. Ari is listed among the missing and the suspects are legion. But Noon’s search is just the beginning. Her journey forces Noon to confront not only those she loves, but also enemies hell-bent on destroying them.

•••••••••

REVIEW: POCKET FULL OF TINDER is the fourth installment in Jill Archer’s UF/Dystopian/Post-Apocalyptic NOON ONYX series.

BACKGROUND : Archer’s series focuses on the simmering truce between Angels and Demons 2000 years after Armageddon , and the destructive nature of the Maegester and their dark ‘waning’ magic. But for 22 year old Nouiomo Onyx (aka Noon) a reversal of fortunes has occurred at her birth-she was imbued with the dark waning magic (once only accorded to men) and her twin Nocturo (Nightshade) was the waxing magic (once only accorded to women). Women are the creators not the destroyers. Noon’s ability to wield waning magic will become both a curse and a blessing- in more ways than one.

Told from first person point of view (Noon Onyx) POCKET FULL OF TINDER is the continuing story of Maegester-in-Training Noon Onyx, as she struggles with who she is and what she has become. At the end of book three-White Heart of Justice-Noon walked away from the only man she has ever loved after a perceived betrayal and lie of omission forced our heroine to choose between love and a happily ever after, and living a life she knows as a lie. POCKET FULL OF TINDER is witness to Noon’s latest assignment that will bring our heroine face to face with her new employer at Rockthorn Gorge-Lord Aristos aka Ari Carmine aka the man that she loves. What ensues is the rebuilding romance between Noon and Ari, and the search for the person(s) responsible for the continued attacks against, and the destruction of a dam project near Rockthorn Gorge.

POCKET FULL OF TINDER is a heartbreaking story line; a revealing look at two people whose hearts were shattered by betrayal; whose lives will be destroyed by power and greed; whose happily ever after is never meant to be. We get up close and personal with the hierarchy of demonkind, angels, and the political elite in a post-apocalyptic world governed by magic and power. The premise is complex and original; the characters are passionate, magical and unique; the romance is emotional and intense. Jill Archer NOON ONYX is an amazing, imaginative and fantastic series with flawless text, and a breathtaking premise.

Reading Order and Previous Reviews
Dark Light of Day
Fiery Edge of Steel
White Heart of Justice
Pocket Full of Tinder

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Sandy

About The Author

Jill ARcherJill Archer writes dark, genre-bending fantasy from rural Maryland. Her novels include Dark Light of Day, Fiery Edge of Steel, White Heart of Justice, and Pocket Full of Tinder. She loves cats, coffee, books, movies, day tripping, and outdoor adventuring.

Website: http://www.jillarcher.com/
Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bAzF7n
Blog: https://jillarcherauthor.wordpress.com/blog/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/archer_jill
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jillarcherauthor
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5782149.Jill_Archer
Discussion Questions: http://jillarcherauthor.wordpress.com/book-clubs/

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Ruled (Outlaws #3) by Elle Kennedy-Review, Excerpt & Giveaway

RULED (Outlaws #3) by Elle Kennedy-Review, Excerpt & Giveaway

Ruled Banner

RULED
Outlaws #3
by Elle Kennedy
Genre: adult, post-apocalyptic, dystopian, erotic, romance
Release Date November 1, 2016

Ruled

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ABOUT THE BOOK: RELEASE DATE November 1, 2016

Despite his magnetic personality, Rylan can’t seem to seduce Reese, the deadly leader of their town of outlaws. Winning her over is a welcome challenge, but her indifference isn’t the only thing standing in his way. If he wants Reese, Rylan must also win over Sloan, her stoic protector…

Sloan has always loved Reese, but their painful past has stolen his chances of a future with her. Rylan’s interest in Reese only intensifies the tension—until Sloan begins to wonder if the reckless man might be the one person who can bridge the distance…

The last time Reese fell for the wrong man, she had no choice but to kill him. Now, she desperately wants to take what both Rylan and Sloan are offering. But if she makes the wrong call again, she risks losing them both.

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REVIEW:  RULED is the third installment in Elle Kennedy’s adult , post-apocalyptic/dystopian Outlaws erotic, romance series. This is Rylan, Reese, and Sloan’s story line. RULED can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty but I recommend reading the series in order for backstory and history.

NOTE: RULED contains graphic and explicit scenes of M/M/, M/F and M/F/M sexual situations and may not be suitable for all readers.

SOME BACKGROUND: The OUTLAW series by Elle Kennedy focuses on the post-apocalyptic USA where the country is now divided into a number of respective territories without government control. There are various factions of bandits, enforcers, outlaws, and the people from the city. Life on the outside is hard; there are no laws, no law enforcement, and death is often the better option. Several groups of outlaws have banded together in gated communities for protection and control.

Told from several third person points of view including Rylan, Reese, and Sloan RULED focuses on survival. Reese is determined to end the suffering of the people in her ‘town’ and gathers together the leaders of the outlying camps in an attempt to take down the Enforcers patrolling the area. With one woman pregnant and about to give birth, and a number of under-aged children under her care, Reese’s settlement has been targeted by the people who claim to be in charge. Meanwhile Reese battles her attraction and the emotional fall out for the two men who call to her heart-Rylan and Sloan-both strong, alpha males whose attraction to one another adds fuel to the fire that is already burning. What ensues is the building relationship between Rylan, Reese and Sloan, and dangerous battle for power and control in a war between the Enforcers and the Outlaws.

RULED is a graphically, erotic story line of ménage between three people whose lives will be changed when the potential loss of one means the loss of their hearts. Sloan has been in love with Reese since the first day they met five years earlier; and Rylan’s need for his ‘fearless leader’ is compounded with his need for her second in command. The $ex scenes are intense, seductive and energetic with M/M, M/F, and M/F/M sexual situations.

The world building continues to focus on survival in a post-apocalyptic world where life expectancy is short; food and supplies are scarce; and security and safety is never guaranteed.

Elle Kennedy’s RULED and the OUTLAWS series is a gritty and graphic look at survival of the fittest. The premise is imaginative and clever; the characters are heartbreaking, vivacious, and heroic; the romance is real and raw.

Reading Order and previous reviews
CLAIMED
ADDICTED
RULED

Copy supplied by the publisher through Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

Excerpt

Rylan didn’t waste time. He strode to the two-story brownstone on Main Street and entered behind her. He didn’t bother to knock. Better to ask for forgiveness than permission and all that.
He found her upstairs in her small kitchen, arms braced against the counter as she stared out the window at the unkempt yard behind the building. It was empty, save for a decrepit playset in the back corner. The slide was long gone, but a single swing hung from a rusted bar.
“When you die,” she said without turning around, “I’m going to dub you Saint Rylan, patron of lost causes.”
Rylan stepped close enough that he could feel the heat from her body, but far enough away that there was room for her to escape. “How’d you know it was me instead of Sloan?”
“Your footsteps are different.”
“Huh.” He chewed on that piece of information a bit. He was probably reading too much into it, but the fact that she could distinguish his footsteps from someone else’s? That was all the encouragement he needed to stay. “You’re a damn impressive woman, Reese.”
“Is that right? Because I can tell you and Sloan apart?” She sounded tired, almost resigned. Rylan experienced a pang of concern. Connor had never sounded like this before, but then again, Rylan’s leader had never been in charge of eighty-plus people before either. Con kept his camp small. Even Hudson, his woman, had been an interloper he hadn’t wanted to take in.
Reese, on the other hand, threw her doors open to any misfits, wanderers, and beggars that rattled on her gates.
Rylan briefly pondered what it would’ve been like growing up if there’d been a Reese around when he was young. Maybe then every night wouldn’t have been filled with his mother’s tears and his father’s angry shouts, followed by mournful pleas for forgiveness and hollow exchanges of I love you.
“That, and because you’ve got a vision for the future that few people would ever try to make a reality,” he said frankly.
“You and Connor think I’m nuts, don’t you?”
“Nah, brave.”
And maybe a little foolish, but hell, if it wasn’t for Reese’s foot in their asses, they’d still be holed up in their isolated camp, avoiding Enforcers and scavenging for supplies. Reese’s plan was big and bold and possibly suicidal, but the alternative was to cower, and Rylan had had enough of that.
She sighed and finally turned to look at him. “Did Sloan send you in here to cheer me up?”
Was that a dig? It kinda felt like one. But it was also true—Sloan had sent him. Or at least given him the signal that he wasn’t totally barking up the wrong tree by running after Reese.
He searched her eyes for traces of derision, but he only saw fatigue with a side of melancholy. He wanted to scoop this tough woman into his arms and pleasure her until she was too satisfied to frown.
“I’m here because last night was the best sex I’ve ever had. Because walking away from you isn’t an option for me.”
She made a strangled sound—half laugh, half groan—and rubbed the back of her hand across her forehead. Is that all you can think about?”
“Around you? Yup. I fuck and I fight. Don’t scratch too deep because there’s nothing there.”
She snorted in disbelief. “Tell that to someone who’ll believe you.”
Rylan’s brow furrowed. He’d always skated on the surface of intimacy, enjoying the physical nature of sex—the hot embrace, the rough friction, the sharp desire. What he’d just told Reese was absolutely true. He didn’t feel deeply. He could appreciate it in others, but he’d witnessed firsthand the emptiness of love. What he wanted, and what he could give, was pleasure and nothing more.
“What’re you talking about?” he finally asked, feeling slightly off-center that Reese saw something in him that didn’t exist.
She studied him for a moment before waving her hand carelessly. “It’s nothing. Look, last night was hot, but there’s nothing left here for you.” She presented her back to him and stared out the window again.
Was that a challenge? Sure sounded like one.

 

 

giveaway

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