The Goddess by M.A. Abraham – Review & Anniversary Giveaway

The Goddess by M.A. Abraham – Review & Anniversary Giveaway

 

NOTE: All giveaways require a comment to qualify

M.A. Abraham is graciously offering a Kindle to one commenter, and an e-copy of The Goddess to two (2) lucky commenters

There will be THREE (3) winners: a Kindle e-reader to one commenter, and an e-copy of The Goddess to two (2) lucky commenters

Kindle Giveaway open to USA only.

E-copy of The Goddess is open internationally

–> Please like and  follow M.A. Abraham on Facebook.<–

–> Please follow M.A. Abraham on Twitter. <–

 

Amazon / B&N / Kobo / BAM / iBooks / Smashwords

 

Description:
Chania has lived most of her life in seclusion. She was placed amongst the humans that had once come to the aid of her ancestors, many millenniums before. She kept secreted by the head priestess, and revered as a Goddess by the people. She knows she is not what they think she is. She is an Elven Princess in hiding, and content to stay that way.

Daeron is an Elven/Dragon shapeshifter, who has served as second in command of the Guardians of the Elven Empire for a long time. He comes from a long line of Kings, and has proven himself worthy of his position of life. He is a proud, noble, Golden Dragon, when he is not an Elf. He is not so pleased with the sudden match making ambitions of his leader though, especially when he has been singled out to be mated with one of the leader’s daughters. He is not about to give in without a fight. He will not be used in this manner, not by anyone.

Captured by her father’s guardians and forced to his side, Chania, learns her fate. She is no happier about their upcoming nuptials than Daeron. They recognize the Life Bond they share, but under the circumstances, refuse to allow it to dictate their future. Can they fight an attraction that no Elf has ever been able to deny?

 

Review:

The Goddess by M.A. Abraham is the 1st book in her new Guardians of the Empire.  I have read every book by M.A. Abraham, and I continued to be amazed how her stories continue to get better and better, not to mention her wonderful imagination.  I am happy to say that The Goddess is the start of another great series that takes place in the same world, but of course a different time and characters .

The Goddess is set thousands years past the finale of the Elven Chronicles.  When that series ended, all surviving humans were granted a land called The Valley, where they were able to live prosperous and in peace.   Over the years, these humans did not remember the Elves, who were hidden and unseen in their portal.  

Chania, our heroine, is the goddess, but she is also an oracle and a white dragon.  Chania is still young, and learning; but she does have visions and sees a war on the horizon.  Chania lives in the Valley (human territory) that is led by Britallia (High Priestess), who also has visions.  She protects Chania, who loves to shift to her white dragon.  One day she goes too far, and is caught by Gold Dragons, who will bring her home to the land of her father, where she will see her mother and sister, Serena again.  Seems her mother took the girls years before, because her lifemate, King Gerolth was acting like a dictator.  Now all three have returned, and the King is happy to have them back.  But the Gold Dragons are determined to keep an eye on the wild escapades of the girls.

Chania knows that with the war coming soon, she needs to return to the human world to help them fight off the enemy.  She makes plans with Serena to be prepared to escape within the next month or so.  But Daeron,a leader of the Gold Dragons, and who is a loner and arrogant, knows she is his lifemate and is determined to take her at any cost.  Chania feels the attraction and bond to Daeron, but he has  been possessive and domineering,  not like a  lifemate should be treated as an equal.  Her father, and his brother try to reason with Daeron and his dragon, but he only gets angry at them all, until Chania and Serena finally escape, with Serena going to the Elves for help.

We meet the new General of the Elven Army, Gabriella, who is an Eagle Claw and a descendant of Gabriel. She is a powerful and fierce warrior, who will take charge of the mission to help the humans, working closely with Britallia, and her warrior brothers, as well as Chania.

What follows is an exciting and wonderful adventure, where we will follow three of the most powerful women, and their great warriors/dragons to fight an enemy that has thousands of warriors more than they do.  But it was wonderful to see all the weapons the Elves will bring in: dragons, birds, sword wielding warriors,  thatchers; all the things we remember so well from the Elven Chronicles.  

I do not want to say too much more, as you need to read this book, and meet all the fascinating characters Abraham has created for us to savior.  I loved Gabriella, Britallia and Chania.  For a bit, I was not a fan of Daeron, but closer to the end, changed for the better.  The Goddess was an entertaining, fun, exciting, suspenseful, lifemate romance, and a wonderfuj cast of characters.  I for one I cannot wait to see what comes next.  The Goddess by M.A. Abraham was a super start to this new series, which you should read.

Reviewed by Barb

Copy supplied for Review

 

1. If you have not previously registered at The Reading Cafe, please register by using the log-in at the top of the page (side bar) or by using one of the social log-ins.

NOTE: If you are having difficulty commenting after logging onto the site, please refresh the page (at the top of your computer).

2. If you are using a social log-in, please post your email address with your comment.

3. Please tell us to enter you into the giveaway.

–>4. Please like and  follow M.A. Abraham on Facebook.<–

–>5. Please follow M.A. Abraham on Twitter. <–

6. LIKE us on FACEBOOK and then click GET NOTIFICATION under ‘liked’ for an additional entry.

7. LIKE us on Twitter for an additional entry.

8. Please FOLLOW us on GOODREADS for an additional entry.

9. Please follow The Reading Cafe on Tumblr

10. KINDLE Giveaway open to USA only & The Goddess e-copy is open Internationally

10. Giveaway runs until February 28, 2018

 

Share

Blaze Erupting (Scorpius Syndrome 4.5 /Brigade) 1001 Dark Nights by Rebecca Zanetti-Review & Excerpt Tour

BLAZE ERUPTING (Scorpius Syndrome 4.5 / Brigade) by Rebecca Zanetti-Review and Excerpt Tour

Blaze Erupting
Scorpius Syndrome 4.5 /Brigade #1
1001 Dark Nights
by Rebecca Zanetti
Release Date : January 23, 2018
Genre: adult, post-apocalyptic, dystopian, romance

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon. uk / Amazon.au /

 Don’t own a Kindle? Download the FREE Amazon Kindle App for your mobile device or pc

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date January 23, 2018

Hugh Johnson is nobody’s hero, and the idea of being in the limelight makes him want to growl. He takes care of his brothers, does his job, and enjoys a mellow evening hanging with his hound dog and watching the sports channel. So when sweet and sexy Ellie Smithers from his college chemistry class asks him to save millions of people from a nuclear meltdown, he doggedly steps forward while telling himself that the world hasn’t changed and he can go back to his relaxing life. One look at Ellie and excitement doesn’t seem so bad.

Eleanor Smithers knows that the Scorpius bacteria has and will change life as we know it, but that’s a concern for another day. She’s been hand-picked as the computer guru for The Brigade, which is the USA’s first line of defense against all things Scorpius, including home grown terrorists who’ve just been waiting for a chance to strike. Their target is a nuclear power plant in the east, and the only person who can help her is Hugh, the sexy, laconic, dangerous man she had a crush on so long ago.

•••••••••••••

REVIEW: BLAZE ERUPTING by Rebecca Zanetti is instalment 4.5 in the author’s SCORPIUS SYNDROME cross genre SciFi/post-apocalyptic/ dystopian series, and the latest instalment in the multi-authored 1001 Dark Nights series. This is Homeland Security specialist and Domestic Nuclear Detection Office agent Hugh Johnson, and computer specialist with The Brigade Eleanor ‘Ellie’ Smithers. BLAZE ERUPTING can be read as a stand alone but I recommend reading the series in order for cohesion and backstory as this particular story line falls somewhere in the timeline between two previously released installments.

Told from several third person points of view including Ellie and Hugh, BLAZE ERUPTING is a second chance story line that follows Ellie and Hugh as they are tasked with uncovering a plot to blow up a nuclear power plant- terrorism at the outset of the Scorpius Syndrome outbreak, a biological pandemic sweeping the planet that is about to destroy 99% of the world’s human population. As Hugh and Ellie re-ignite an old spark that has yet to die, home-grown terrorists set into motion a plan to destroy a series of nuclear power plants aiming to eradicate hundreds of thousands of innocent people. What ensues is the quick building, sexual relationship between Hugh and Ellie, and the potential fall out when Hugh’s past with Homeland Security comes under scrutiny by the members of The Brigade- a group of government specialist at the forefront of fighting the Scorpius Syndrome.

BLAZE ERUPTING falls somewhere near the beginning of the Scorpius Syndrome series between Scorpius Rising and Mercury Striking. The reintroduction of Deacon and Nora, whom we have not heard from since the introductory novella (found in the ON THE HUNT anthology August 2015), as well as some new references to events that occurred in earlier instalments, leads me to believe that BLAZE ERUPTING and The Brigade will begin to fill in some of the missing background information, as well as a direct line to the people in charge. I am also going to presume that all of the different factions (Mercs, Vanguard) will eventually cross paths with The Brigade as they search for a cure to the unknown pandemic. The author has plans for three 1001 Dark Night novellas focusing on The Brigade Team.

BLAZE ERUPTING is a quick read; an action packed story that reunites former college classmates whose palpable sexual attraction questions Ellie’s ability to remain neutral when Hugh’s back story comes under scrutiny one too many times. The premise is intriguing; the characters are colorful; the romance is passionate yet desperate.

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

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Sandy

BOOK TRAILER:

Direct Link: https://video214.com/play/pEf1uflh9RioZeBk2eAGZQ/s/dark

He stood and towered over her so suddenly she stopped breathing. “Are you asking me if I’m available, Ellie Mae?”
Warmth from his body, his very close body, washed over her. She tilted her head back to meet his eyes. “Don’t call me that.” It was his little nickname for her in college, and her heart used to stutter every time he used it. Something special just between the two of them.
“Why not?” He stepped in until their feet touched.
She blinked. Sparks flew between her nerves. “Wh-what are you doing?”
“Exploring.” His gaze ran over her face, curiosity clearly gleaming in those deep eyes. “I liked you. Back then. Big eyes, sweet smile, huge brain.” He reached out and brushed a curl away from her cheek, his touch warm.
Her throat closed. Heat flashed from his touch, down her torso, to zing along her erogenous zones. “Yet the one time I made a move, you rejected me.” It still hurt. When he was down and out—injured and in pain—she’d tried to give comfort.
“I wasn’t lookin’ for forever, and you’re a forever type of gal,” he murmured, standing way too close. “That offer you made nearly killed me sayin’ no. But even though I was hurtin’ and wanted to stop the pain, I couldn’t hurt you. Ever.” As if he couldn’t help himself, he brushed his knuckles along her jawline. “But I wanted you, Ell. Just knew you’d be a mistake I’d never recover from.”
Her lungs released quickly, and she took a step sideways along the coffee table. “Agreed.”
Amusement tilted his lips. “I ain’t a college kid no more, Ellie.”
“I’m well aware of that.” She needed to go by him to get to the door, and he wasn’t moving out of the way. How in the world did he still affect her like this? It had been years, for goodness’ sake. “We’re both eons out of college.”
“I’m no longer hurtin’ or whorin’ around,” he continued, looking big and broad in the small room.
“Your point?” she snapped, trying to get her libido under some semblance of control. Why did his country-boy act turn her on? She needed a shrink. Bad.
“My point? Well now.” His smile was more wolf than sheepdog. “This time, when you make the offer? I’m gonna say yes.”


 

Rebecca Zanetti is the author of over twenty-five romantic suspense, dark paranormal, and contemporary romances, and her books have appeared multiple times on the New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon bestseller lists. She has received a Publisher’s Weekly Starred Review for Wicked Edge, Romantic Times Reviewer Choice Nominations for Forgotten Sins and Sweet Revenge, and RT Top Picks for several of her novels. She lives in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest with her own alpha hero, two kids, a couple of dogs, a crazy cat…and a huge extended family. She believes strongly in luck, karma, and working her butt off…and she thinks one of the best things about being an author, unlike the lawyer she used to be, is that she can let the crazy out. Find Rebecca at: www.rebeccazanetti.com

Website * Twitter * Facebook * Amazon * Goodreads

 

Share

Rising from the Ashes by M.A. Abraham – Review & Giveaway

Rising from the Ashes by M.A. Abraham – Review & Giveaway

 

Rising From the Ashes Banner

 

Rising From The AshesAmazon / B&N / Kobo

Description:
Continuing from where the Elven Chronicles left off. We bring you the ONE EMPIRE SERIES.

The Drazon is dead, and the Demons have been eradicated from the Elven Empire. Now the Elves can begin anew, and this is exactly what they are about to do. Their lands are scarred by the war, their original Kingdoms fragmented and their people are in need of healing as much as the world around them. The boundary has been raised, to separate the Elven Empire from the rest of the world, and they settle down to work.

The new era starts with the Elven Kingdoms uniting as the One Empire, Life Mates are found, relationships cemented, and peace reigns. There is no better time to rebuild their world, and raise a family. First, the men who took advantage of Gabriel and Eden’s spell must convince their Life Mates that what they did was not such a bad thing. That could take a while, especially for any Male Elf who is bonded to a Light Elven Female

 

Review:

Rising from the Ashes by M.A. Abraham is a novella that introduces the start of her new One Empire series, which will begin with Hidden Kingdoms.

In Rising from the Ashes, the story picks up after the finale of the Elven Chronicles series.  Though they may have won the war with the Demons, the land in the Elven Empire was pretty much destroyed.  We get to see all of our favorites again as they do everything in their power to try to restore the land, which is currently like living in the dark ages.   In the midst of everyone working overtime in what looks like a hopeless situation, the people of the Elven Empire never give up and now with Eden and Gabriel’s fertility spell used again, most of the female elves are pregnant. 

This is a difficult review to write, as this is all about everyone helping one another, which will bring forth help from the other Kings of different lands that were not affected by the Demon war.  I really did enjoy this book, and loved seeing the characters we all have come to love; Eden, Gabriel, Marious, Lothariel, Daroth, Tamarek and so many more.  It was really a quick fast read, and nice to see the camaraderie between them as the amazing Elves work together to help rebuilt the lands.  Very well done.   I look forward to see what Abraham will bring in her new One Empire series.

 If you are a fan of the Elven Chronicles, you need to read this book, which the title says it all…Rising From the Ashes.  If you have not read the Elven Chronicles, I suggest you do so now.  Rising From the Ashes is a fun, heartwarming and emotional story that will lead the way to a new Empire. M.A. Abraham is a wonderful author, who has an amazing imagination and brings the characters and this world to life.

Reviewed by Barb

Copy supplied for review

 

 

giveaway

M.A. is offering an e-copy of RISING FROM THE ASHES to TWO (2) lucky commenterS at The Reading Cafe.

1. If you have not previously registered at The Reading Cafe, please register by using the log-in at the top of the page (side bar) or by using one of the social log-ins.

NOTE: If you are having difficulty commenting after logging onto the site, please refresh the page (at the top of your computer).

2. If you are using a social log-in, please post your email address with your comment.

3. LIKE M.A.Abraham on Facebook

4. LIKE us on FACEBOOK and then click  ALL NOTIFICATIONS under ‘liked’ for an additional entry.

5. LIKE us on Twitter for an additional entry.

6. Please FOLLOW us on GOODREADS for an additional entry.

7. Please follow The Reading Cafe on Tumblr

8. Giveaway open US & Canada only

9. Giveaway runs December 10 to  14, 2017

 

 

 

 

Share

The Last Namsara by Kristen Ciccarelli – a Review

The Last Namsara by Kristen Ciccarelli – a Review

 

The Last NamsaraAmazon / B&N / Kobo / BAM / Book Depository

 

Description:
In the beginning, there was the Namsara: the child of sky and spirit, who carried love and laughter wherever he went. But where there is light, there must be dark—and so there was also the Iskari. The child of blood and moonlight. The destroyer. The death bringer.

These are the legends that Asha, daughter of the king of Firgaard, has grown up hearing in hushed whispers, drawn to the forbidden figures of the past. But it isn’t until she becomes the fiercest, most feared dragon slayer in the land that she takes on the role of the next Iskari—a lonely destiny that leaves her feeling more like a weapon than a girl. 

Asha conquers each dragon and brings its head to the king, but no kill can free her from the shackles that await at home: her betrothal to the cruel commandant, a man who holds the truth about her nature in his palm. When she’s offered the chance to gain her freedom in exchange for the life of the most powerful dragon in Firgaard, she finds that there may be more truth to the ancient stories than she ever could have expected. With the help of a secret friend—a slave boy from her betrothed’s household—Asha must shed the layers of her Iskari bondage and open her heart to love, light, and a truth that has been kept from her.

 

 

Review:

The Last Namsara by Kristen Ciccarelli is the 1st book in her new YA fantasy Iskari series.  Ciccarelli has created a complex and interesting fantasy world of Dragons, Royalty and a heroine, who is considered a princess, but is hated by many.  Asha, our heroine, is considered an Iskari, bringer of death.  When she was a young child, she suffered a disfigurement when she accidently hurt Kozu, the first and most powerful Dragon. The town had serious deaths & damage by the fire of an angry Dragon, which the town blamed her for that disaster. From that moment, Asha became the Iskari, and her job was to kill all dragons and bring their heads to her father, the King. Though this is noted above, it is worth reprinting to explain the difference between an Iskari and Namsara.

                “In the beginning, there was the Namsara: the child of sky and spirit, who carried love and laughter wherever he went. But where there is light, there must be dark—and so there was also the Iskari. The child of blood and moonlight. The destroyer. The death bringer.”

In current time, Asha is determined to find Kozu and kill him, which would free her from having to marry the commandant, Jarek, who truly was evil.  While killing another dragon, she returns home to Figaard with a burned hand that can be poisonous.  Jarek’s slave is nearby and attempt to help her, but he is not allowed to touch her; he does anyway in order to help her, but she will keep his secret.  The slave, Torwin, is besotted with Asha, but knows this is forbidden.  Asha herself, wants nothing to do with the slave boy.  Things during the course of this story will slowly change, as will Asha’s life. 

Because of the burn, or due to her desire to find, Kozu, Asha has dreams during the night about the old one, and is given things she needs to do to be able to find Kozu.  First she is given blades to fight; then is given a young dragon that she must protect; lastly she is given fireskin, which allows her to go through fire and not get burned.  The key to the story is that Asha would always kill dragons, thinking that is her destiny.  But when she must protect the young dragon, Shadow, who follows her everywhere, she begins to have feelings for the dragon.  Torwin, who is now on the run from Jarek and death, does everything he can to help Asha and Shadow; and a friendship is born, but one of secrecy.

What follows is an addictive adventure that will have Asha and Torwin running for their lives, especially when she realizes that she has been betrayed from the beginning, when she was burned as a child.  Her half cousin, Safire and her brother, Dax try to help her and together they will find the truth that will also save Dax’s life.  What was amazing was the Dragons, especially Kozu, who would become a very big part of Asha ‘s life, as we raced to climax, which was an exciting last half of the book.

I can’t tell too much more, as it would ruin the story for you. The Last Namsara was an exciting, captivating story, in a fantastic intriguing new world, which includes villains, dragons, forbidden romance and a great heroine. Kristen Ciccarelli has done a fabulous job writing this story, and I cannot wait for the next book. 

Reviewed by Barb

Copy provided by Publisher

Share

Forbidden Contact by M.A. Abraham – a Review

Forbidden Contact by M.A. Abraham – a Review

 

Forbidden ContactAmazon / B&N / Kobo

Description:
Karia can barely stand to be around herself, never mind others. She has been confined to the Aerie, until after the birth of her child, but there are limits to what she can do to pass the time.

Mitchell understands, although there is little he can do about it. He doesn’t have the time to deal with her moods and needs.

Erin, remembers what it was like for her, when she had carried Karia, but the requirements of her position with the new inhabitants of Tantalus, due to Karia’s pregnancy, is taking up every moment she has to spare.

Only one, Alena, seems to know what to do to soothe her granddaughter as she enters the final stages of her pregnancy. She enters the room, sits by Karia’s chair and begins to speak: “Let me tell you of a very young Tantalarian girl, a handsome young Tantalarian Guardian and the love they shared.”

Review:

Forbidden Contact by M.A. Abraham is a novella from her Tantalus series. This story revolves around Michel and Karia as they await the birth of their child. With the soon arrival of humans from mars, Michel is sent to oversee the preparations for more food, and habitual caves.

Karia’s great grandmother and grandmother watch over her through the start of her contractions. To get her mind off of the pain, Alenia (great grandmother) tells her how she met her great grandfather, and the laws in those days that prevented them on acting on their feelings. When she became pregnant with Erin (grand mother), they were punished and separated. The laws were archaic, but the tribunal elder refused to listen, thereby causing much friction that would take decades to open doors.

When Erin gave birth to Karia in a similar way, only the fact that Karia was designated to belong to a high ranking Phoenix opened the way for things to slowly change.

To tell too much more, would be spoilers leading into the next full length novel. When the happy couple give birth, those changes will begin with a big, but nice twist. Forbidden Contact was a nice lighthearted story about the past and the changes that need to be made to bring the Tantalarians into modern times, as well as to be ready for the oncoming flux of humans. I look forward to the next book in this series.

Reviewed by Barb

Copy supplied for review

Share

Unspeakable (Beyond Human #2) by Nina Croft-Review & Excerpt

UNSPEAKABLE (Beyond Human #2) by Nina Croft-Review and Excerpt

Unspeakable

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / itunes /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date September 25 ,2017

Sadie Brooks grew up knowing she was different…special. And she thought the undercover work she did for the government was making a difference…making a better world. Then she discovered she was simply an asset—to be used or destroyed at whim.

Escaping her government controllers, Sadie is determined to get her revenge on the organization responsible for the death of her twin sister—the Conclave.

Ethan Weiland has doubts about the Conclave but he’s never known anything else.
Brought up from birth as the next hereditary leader, Ethan has never questioned his
destiny. Until he comes face to face with a beautiful enemy who can read his mind and bring him to his knees with a thought. For the first time, Ethan sees a chance for redemption. When he’s in charge, he’ll be able to change things.

Too bad it won’t be that simple.

••••••••

REVIEW: UNSPEAKABLE is the second installment in Nina Croft’s adult BEYOND HUMAN paranormal, sci-fi romance series focusing on a class of supernatural humans known as the Tribe-descendants from a group of people discovered, over 100 years earlier, by an expedition to the Mountains of the Moon (Congo Free State of Africa). This is Tribe member Sadie Brooks, and Conclave royalty/Afghanistan army veteran Ethan Weiland’s story line. UNSPEAKABLE can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any important information from previous story lines is revealed where necessary but I recommend reading the series in order for back story and cohesion. There is a prequel short story-NO MORE LIES-that introduces the premise behind the series concept. On that note, NO MORE LIES can be found in the multi-authored anthology THE TELEPATH CHRONICLES originally released in 2014.

SOME BACKGROUND: The Tribe believe themselves to be descendants of a species of humans blessed and cursed with supernatural, psychic powers. Their discovery has led to the formation of the Conclave who have taken it upon themselves to experiment with the mind and the brain, destroying that which they do not understand.

Told from several third person points of view including Sadie and Ethan UNSPEAKABLE continues to focus on the discrimination and specieism aimed at the descendants of the Tribe- a race of tall, blue-eyed Caucasians believed to be the product of inbreeding who were transferred to Scotland, given a home and all but forgotten until a secret, government faction known as the Conclave set about trying to capture and experiment upon those that have survived. Sadie Brooks’ latest assignment finds her face to face with the enemy and her future-Ethan Weiland- a man whose direct link to the Conclave places Sadie and the members of the Tribe in mortal danger. When a mutual contact is found dead, Sadie sets into motion a meeting with the man with whom she will fall in love. What ensues is the building relationship between Sadie and Ethan as they attempt to uncover the whereabouts of Sadie’s missing friends; and the search for the truth behind the Conclave’s desire to eradicate a species struggling to survive.

UNSPEAKABLE is a detailed story line that follows several paths including the revelations about the death of Sadie’s sister, and Ethan’s mom; the imprisonment, experimentation and death of members of the Tribe; and the discovery that not everything and everyone is who they appear to be. A time-machine, possibly from the future, is the Tribe’s only link to the past-a past that is quickly re-written at every turn.

There is a large ensemble cast of secondary and supporting characters including several members of the Conclave, the Tribe, and the introduction of a potentially new but familiar enemy on the horizon. We are introduced to Ethan’s father, his cousin Travis, Travis’s wife Joelle, and Ethan’s assistant ex-military Fergus Baker. I am hoping Fergus will find his happily ever after.

UNSPEAKABLE is a story of family and friendships; discrimination and fear; and the struggle to survive. The premise is entertaining and intriguing; the characters are colorful, dynamic and challenging; the romance is passionate and forbidden. UNSPEAKABLE is a revealing installment in Nina Croft’s BEYOND HUMAN series.

Click HERE for Sandy’s review of book one UNTHINKABLE

Copy supplied by Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

excerpt

Excerpt copy supplied by the author

 

“This is for real?” Fergus sounded…bemused. “She can read minds?”
“Oh, it’s real,” Sadie said. She strolled across and patted Fergus on the arm. He flinched under the touch. “But don’t worry, I won’t tell your boss that his big, bad, macho assistant has been secretly in love with him for the last twelve years.”
Fergus stepped back, shock stamped clear on his face. Ethan was sure his own looked the same. Had she just said Fergus was in love with him?
Sadie laughed out loud. “I’m kidding, guys. Geez, you’re so easy to wind up.”
He shook his head. “Really?”
She grinned. “Hey, you have to admit it was funny. Just the expressions on your faces.”
“Bitch,” Fergus muttered. He stood staring at the floor for a minute. “So what am I thinking?”
“Three thousand five hundred and sixty…four. Though why I’m playing along with this, I don’t know. It’s nothing to do with me if you don’t believe. I’m sure there’s nothing in your head worth seeing.” She turned her attention to him. “He thinks you should kill me. I’m too dangerous to keep around. Too many secrets.” She went back to her perch on the desk, swinging the empty glass from her fingers. “You know, those government controllers promised us a world with no more secrets. No more lies. Then they gave us the same old shit.”
She sounded bitter and sad. He wanted her laughter back, and as the thought crossed his mind, a small smile curved her lips. “You know you’re not the badass you like to make out to be.”
He decided to give Fergus time to come to terms with things. He was clearly still in the shock stage.
“Why did you run in the end?” he asked her. “What changed?”
“One of us died. He wasn’t the first, but we’d always believed them before—they told us the deaths were from natural causes. But they’d been lying to us almost from the start.”
Maybe not from the start. More likely, when the Conclave got involved. She looked at him sharply and gave a quick nod in agreement.
“Did someone close to you die?”
“My twin sister. Four years ago. They said it was some sort of blood disease, but they killed her, experimenting on her until she died. I never even saw the body.”
“Is that why you came looking? Is that what you want out of all this? Revenge?”
She pursed her lips, maybe considering what to tell him. “Actually, I do want revenge. But the main reason my group is hunting the Conclave is because, believe it or not, we’re more interested in secrecy than even you are.”
“Why is that? “Ethan asked.
“Ah well, now that would be telling secrets.”
God, she was annoying. “The hunted becomes the hunter,” Ethan said. “I quite like the concept. It has a certain irony.”
“So you’re not a prostitute?” Fergus interrupted them. He still sounded a little bemused.
“Why? Were you hoping to do business with me?”
“I don’t pay.”
She rolled her eyes. “Why ever would you have to? You’re such a charmer. But no, I’m not a prostitute.”
“And you read minds.”
“Among other things.”
“What else?” Ethan asked.
“I can talk to animals. Well, not really talk, but they understand me and usually do what I ask.”
“How well do you read minds? How much can you see?” Fergus sounded rattled.
“Now that would be telling. But I’m not the best. Let’s just say, I can see that you don’t want to believe me, but you do. You think Ethan has made a deal with the devil—that’s a bit strong by the way, I’m not that bad—which will likely get us all killed.” She studied him for a minute, her eyes narrowed, her head cocked on one side. Poor Fergus almost squirmed beneath her direct stare. “You think he wants this too much, and that he should maybe leave the past in the past, where it belongs. And move on.”
How much was she getting? He wasn’t ready to reveal his purpose yet.
She shook her head. “But the problem is, Ethan’s not ready to move on. Mainly because he has nowhere he wants to go. Poor Ethan. Brought up to believe he’s got the right to rule the world and part of him thinks, yes—he can do a better job than most—so why not?” She gave him a small smile. “But he also suspects that ultimate power corrupts, and a system based on hereditary passing on of power can only ever lead to disaster. And that soon, he might very well be faced with a difficult choice.” She shrugged. “Fingers crossed he makes the right decision.”


 

About the Author

Nicola CleasbyFollow: Goodreads / Website Facebook / Twitter / Newsletter Sign UP/ Pinterest

Growing up in the cold, wet, north of England, Nina Croft spent a lot of time dreaming of faraway sunnier places and ponies. When she discovered both, along with a whole load of other things, could be found between the covers of a book, her life changed forever.

Later, she headed south, picked up the perfect husband along the way, and together they volunteered to work in Africa. There they discovered a love of exotic places and a dislike of 9-5 work. Afterward they spent a number of years travelling (whenever possible) intermingled with working (whenever necessary.) Eventually they stumbled upon a remote area in the mountains of southern Spain and the small almond farm they now call home.

Nina spends her days reading, writing and riding her mare, Gencianna, under the blue Spanish skies—sunshine and ponies. She reckons this is proof that dreams really can come true if you want them enough.

Share

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

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

Storm Gathering

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / Chapters Indigo /

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

Share

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

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

Cracked Open

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / Chapters Indigo /

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

Share