Thursday, December 8, 2022

Conqueror by Anna Hackett [Review]

Conqueror (Galactic Kings #4) by Anna Hackett
Format: paperback
Source: purchased
Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Date read: November 10, 2022

Galactic Kings
1. Overlord
2. Emperor
3. Captain of the Guard
4. Conqueror - Paperback | Kindle

Related Series:
Galactic Gladiators
(Find all the books in this series on the 1st book review)
1. Gladiator

Galactic Gladiators: House of Rone
(Find all the books in this series on the 1st book review)
1. Sentinel

Anna Hackett
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Amazon |

Synopsis (Goodreads):
After two years of alien captivity, Evie is free, but her captors have changed her. Now struggling to control a terrifying new power, her only hope is one formidable, dangerous alien king.

Logistics manager Evie Mason is no longer a prisoner on an alien space station, but she’s far from Earth, suffering nightmares, and fighting to ignore the growing power inside her. She just wants to be normal, but when she comes face to face with the intoxicating ruler of the planet Taln, normal isn’t an option. He speaks to the power inside her, and ignites a fierce desire she’s never felt before.

Conqueror Graylan Taln Sarkany is the king of Taln and its people, who can control the geological forces of their planet. He’s dedicated to protecting Talnians from his evil father and uses his immense power to command the rocks, soil, and earthquakes. But Gray must always keep a part of his power leashed. The part that’s too volatile, too enormous, too dangerous. Then one small, tough woman from Earth threatens all his control.

As a final, violent showdown with Graylan’s father draws closer, Gray and Evie are swept into a whirlwind of power and passion, their powers connecting them in ways neither of them understand. With Gray’s brothers, their mates, and allies by their side, they will fight, and Gray will unleash everything he has to protect his planet, his people, and Evie.
Thoughts on Conqueror: It's Graylan's turn to fall (and fall hard) for a human woman while protecting his planet and people from his father's nefarious plans. As the final book in the series, we get answers and resolutions and CLOSURE, my friends. FABULOUS.

But first, Graylan and Evie. He's the powerful ruler of Taln, she's a former captive of Graylan's father who has been experimented on and used to fuel Zavir's other terrible projects. He's 100% convinced he can never allow himself to love. She's trying to find her balance after the awful things done to her.

Look, I'm not here to spoil anything, but Graylan does, in fact, find himself catching feelings for the fierce human woman. He likes her. A lot. And he has to come to terms with that and admit they have the start of something epic before they can move forward with anything. And, yeah, maybe a little life and death situation helps spur things into motion. Because when the potential that you could lose the person you caught feelings for is staring you in the face, a person figures out what's important.

As for Evie, she's got a lot on her plate. A ability she never asked for and doesn't want (at first), the reality that she's likely never going home again, and a big, brooding hunk of a conqueror who's taking up a lot of real estate in her head and heart. Fortunately, both she and Graylan have friends and family they can lean on when things get tough.

A lot of danger, plenty of steam, answer to questions, and a very satisfying conclusion (for everyone, if you know what I mean!). *thumbs up*

The Trouble With Witches by Kristen Painter [Review]

The Trouble With Witches (Shadowvale #1) by Kristen Painter
Format: ebook
Source: purchased
Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Date read: November 3, 2021

Shadowvale
1. The Trouble With Witches - Paperback | Kindle
2. The Vampire's Cursed Kiss
3. The Forgettable Miss French
4. Moody and the Beast
5. Her First Taste of Fire

Kristen Painter
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Amazon |

Synopsis (Goodreads):
Shadowvale isn’t typical small town America. The sun never shines, the gates decide who enters, magic abounds, and every resident bears some kind of curse.

No one knows this as well as raven shifter Deacon Evermore, who, like everyone in his family, has a curse. While his position as Shadowvale’s peacekeeper lets him use that curse for good, he’d rather live anywhere else. He stays for his family, but doubts he can last much longer.

Fledgling witch Emeranth Greer is determined to escape her past and make a fresh start in Shadowvale with the aunt she’s never met. Her aunt and the town prove to be far better than she imagined. There’s no way Em is leaving this magical place. Especially when staying means more time with the handsome Deacon.

But when Em’s troubled past catches up with her and nearly destroys the romance budding between her and Deacon, her instinct is to run again. Except there’s magic in the mix now and the town won’t let her leave. Only Deacon can save her, but can a cursed man clear her name…or will her history destroy them both?
Thoughts on The Trouble With Witches: Shadowvale might not be your typical place to live, but seeing as how the people who inhabit it are anything but typical themselves, it works out kind of nicely. I mean, where else would vampires be able to settle down without fear of the sun (because the sun doesn't shine there) or witches and others of their ilk be able to practice openly? Nowhere, I'm thinking.

Anywho. On the romance end, we have Em, who's looking to settle into Shadowvale (although she has no clue of her magical birthright OR of what Shadowvale is when she sets out to meet her aunt), and Deacon, who desperately wants to leave to give his sister the life she deserves. Em's aunt tasks Deacon with showing Em all the reasons she SHOULDN'T stay and he's, well, he's trying. But Em's pretty enchanted with the town in general. Even the weird, dangerous parts.

For all that the longer he spends with Em, the more he's coming to like her, Deacon still does his part in trying to dissuade her from staying. On Em's end, she has no clue the boon her aunt has offered Deacon if he can convince her to leave and BOY things could have been messy when it all came out.

A quirky town full of quirky folk, family of both the good and not-so-good variety, a lady trying to find herself, and a man who's trying to do right by the people who matter to him even if it costs him his own happiness. Shadowvale is weird and wonderful and very, very fun!

Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Illusion Town by Jayne Castle [Review]

Illusion Town (Ghost Hunters #13) by Jayne Castle
Format: ebook
Source: purchased
Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Date read: October 28, 2021

Ghost Hunters
0.5. Bridal Jitters
1. After Dark
2. After Glow
3. Ghost Hunter
4. Silver Master
5. Dark Light
6. Obsidian Prey
7. Midnight Crystal
8. Canyons of Night
9. The Lost Night
10. Deception Cove
11. The Hot Zone
12. Siren's Call
13. Illusion Town - Paperback | Kindle
14. Guild Boss
15. Sweetwater and the Witch

Jayne Castle (AKA Jayne Ann Krentz)
| Website | Twitter | Facebook | Amazon |

Synopsis (Goodreads):
With its opulent casinos and hotels, the desert city of Illusion Town is totally unique—and will take you on a thrill ride you’ll never forget.

Hannah West isn’t the first woman to wake up in Illusion Town married to a man she barely knows, but she has no memory of the ceremony at all. For that matter, neither does Elias Coppersmith, her new husband. All either can remember is that they were on the run…

With Hannah’s dubious background and shaky para-psych profile, she could have done much worse. The cooly competent mining heir arouses her curiosity—as well as other parts of her mind and body. And even her dust bunny likes him.

But a honeymoon spent retracing their footsteps leads Hannah and Elias into the twisting underground catacombs, where secrets from both their pasts will come to light—and where the energy of their clashing auras will grow hot enough to burn…
Thoughts on Illusion Town: MAN, I enjoy these ghost hunters and Harmony and all the weirdness these characters get tangled up in. While neither Elias or Hannah are ghost hunters themselves, their talents aren't run of the mill, either.

Hannah's dreamwalking talent and ability to find things has put her on the radar of a few unsavory individuals. Waking up married to Elias with no memory of how they ended up in their predicament, has her a wee bit on edge already. Throw in a few abduction attempts, an irritating doctor who doesn't know when to cut his losses, and a mysterious legacy and Hannah has a lot on her plate.

As for Elias, he's an engineer who's rather logically minded and he's kind of all in with the whole Hannah situation from the beginning. As they unravel why they got married on the fly and who's after them, his like for Hannah deepens. He admires her abilities and her bravery and isn't exactly thrilled when Hannah keeps insisting their marriage is temporary only.

A little danger, a lot of steam, a town that refuses to abandon one of its own, and a fantastic find in the catacombs. Like I said, I enjoy these ghost hunters and all the wildness they encounter in the underground of Harmony!

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

A Hard Day for a Hangover by Darynda Jones [Review]

A Hard Day for a Hangover (Sunshine Vicram #3) by Darynda Jones
Format: ebook
Source: provided through NetGalley
Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Date read: October 21, 2022

Sunshine Vicram
1. A Bad Day for Sunshine
2. A Good Day for Chardonnay
3. A Hard Day for a Hangover - Hardcover | Kindle

Darynda Jones
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Amazon |

Synopsis (Goodreads):
Some people greet the day with open arms. Sheriff Sunshine Vicram would rather give it a hearty shove and get back into bed, because there’s just too much going on right now. There’s a series of women going missing, and Sunny feels powerless to stop it. There’s her persistent and awesomely-rebellious daughter Auri, who’s out to singlehandedly become Del Sol’s youngest and fiercest investigator. And then there’s drama with Levi Ravinder—the guy she’s loved and lusted after for years. The guy who might just be her one and only. The guy who comes from a family of disingenuous vipers looking to oust him—and Sunshine—for good.

Like we said, the new day can take a hike.
Thoughts on A Hard Day for a Hangover: Not going to lie, Sunshine has a lot on her plate this time around. I mean, there's an injured girl, a old case that should have been investigated (but looks like it was buried instead), Auri's incessant need to put herself into VERY DANGEROUS situations, and Levi. As we all know, Sunny has loved Levi forever, but the world (and his sometimes awful family) keeps getting in the way and keeping them apart.

Well, plus, Levi is very good at going to ground and remaining hidden when he wants to.

Anywho. Sunny is busy. Fortunately, she has a solid group of people who have her back, a secret town council who truly have the town's best interests at heart, and a family who supports her. She also has enemies who aren't above using anything and everything they can get their hands on to hurt Sunny and those she loves.

While Sunny does her best to solve the cases that keep popping up around town, the not-so-great side of Levi's family are making their move. And since Levi is Sunny's special someone (even if they have trouble admitting it to one another), she's not about to let anything happen to him.

More than a few dangerous situations, a whole lot of banter and snark, SMOLDER (you know, just whenever Levi and Sunny are within a mile or two of one another), and a whole lot of closure. I've enjoyed Sunny and her unexpected foray into sheriff-dom with the people of Del Sol. I liked watching old hurts be excised and good things happen as people reconnect. Am I sad to say goodbye? I AM. Am I pleased with how things ended? YES, INDEED!

Any Witch Way by Lindsay Buroker [Review]

Any Witch Way (A Witch in Wolf Wood #3) by Lindsay Buroker
Format: ebook
Source: borrowed through Kindle Unlimited
Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Date read: November 7, 2021

A Witch in Wolf Wood
1. Mind Over Magic
2. Spell Hound
3. Any Witch Way - PaperbackKindle
4. Moment of Tooth
5. Charmed and Dangerous

Lindsay Buroker
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Amazon |

Synopsis (Goodreads):
Thanks to her grandmother’s legacy, Morgen Keller has spent the summer learning about her witch heritage. She’s also spent the summer falling for the sexy werewolf next door.

As an unemployed divorcĂ©e, she never expected to find love again, but the gruff Amar has been her protector since she arrived in Bellrock. He’s fierce, loyal, strong, and he hardly ever rolls his eyes at her vegetarian ways. He’s a keeper.

There’s just one problem:

Witches and werewolves are mortal enemies.

When her mentor turns her back on her, and the coven delivers an ultimatum, Morgen must choose between her heritage and the man—the werewolf—she’s falling in love with.
Thoughts on Any Witch Way: In her time in Bellrock, Morgan's made nice with the werewolves (or at least ONE of the werewolf packs). Considering the bad blood between the wolves and the witches, you can probably guess the witches aren't happy with her. Unfortunately, since Morgan knows little to nothing about being a witch, she sort of needs those witchy jerkfaces if she ever plans on doing anything substantial with her power.

For the record, while I completely understand why Morgan wants to have a relationship with the witches (having someone show her the witchy ropes would be extremely useful), the coven's propensity for attacking first and not asking questions AT ALL kind of makes me have a sour lemon face. Morgan has to pull their bottoms out of a fire of their own making before they begin to see the error of their ways and NO LIKE.

Then there's Amar. Morgan likes him (grumpiness and all), but she's not quite confident enough in herself to put it out there. And Amar is kind of closed-lipped about how he feels, so she REALLY not sure if her feelings are reciprocated. It takes time, doing, and Morgan being her usual self before Amar is willing to unwind enough for the two of them to figure things out.

Shady supernaturals, family, a newbie witch trying to figure things out, and a werewolf pack who are giving Morgan everything she needs (construction-wise) and then some. *thumbs up*

Monday, December 5, 2022

I Married a Birdman by Regine Abel [Review]

I Married a Birdman (Prime Mating Agency #3) by Regine Abel
Format: ebook
Source: borrowed through Kindle Unlimited
Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Date read: October 25, 2021

Prime Mating Agency
1. I Married a Lizardman
2. I Married a Naga
3. I Married a Birdman - Paperback | Kindle
4. I Married a Merman
5. I Married a Minotaur
6. I Married a Dragon

Regine Abel
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Amazon |

Synopsis (Goodreads):
Her sacrifice could save her people.

Luana’s colony is under threat of an impending attack. As the sole child of their grievously wounded leader, she seeks aid from the only other native species on the planet. Consenting to a marriage of convenience with one of the Zelconians, a peaceful bird-like race, would secure the protection her village desperately needs. As much as that prospect terrifies her, Luana cannot deny being intrigued by the hybrid she is to marry, with his strange eyes full of stars, his majestic wings, and his hypnotic voice.

Dakas is shocked when his soul clamors for Luana the moment she enters their Council chamber. Who would have thought the brewing war would have finally allowed him to find his soulmate? Her delicate and demure appearance cannot fool his empathic abilities. Dakas senses the fire and strength burning within Luana. He’s more than eager to take the human as his mate to serve both of their peoples’ best interests. But he wants more than to protect her village; he wants to conquer her heart.

Can Luana embrace their union despite the circumstances, or will the war destroy any chances they had of a future together?
Thoughts on I Married a Birdman: I'm just going to put this out there: I'm enjoying that the alien males our human women are being matched with are very different from one another. They're humanoid enough to not cause too many *ahem* difficulties when it comes to physical compatibility, but they are VERY different from one another. I mean, we've been given a lizard, a snake, and a bird. AND I'M HAVING SO MUCH FUN READING ABOUT THEM ALL!

Anywho. This time around we have Luana and Dakas. She's a human looking for a way to save her people from being overrun and enslaved by a war-like tribe of natives. He's an empathic hybrid who, though a series of rather fortunate events, ends up being able to help Luana with her problem. Admittedly, the marriage/mating thing was a bit of surprise (because the UPO is a wee bit tricksy when it comes to giving people what they need without quite breaking the rules to do so), but they're both a-okay with it FOR REASONS. (The reasons being the whole soul mate thing. Luana might not feel the rightness of them the way Dakas does, but she feels something and she'll willing to go with it.)

We have some cultural differences the two need to figure out, a few physical and biological differences (to be fair, they both enjoy learning about their physical differences VERY MUCH, RAWR!), and a war tribe breathing down the necks of the humans that needs to be addressed. They both go into their situation with open minds and they make things work. On all fronts.

*thumbs up*