Book Review · Omegaverse

#TBRChallenge2022 – Post #1

Donovan’s Girl (The Sacred Omega’s)
by Merel Pierce

This hadn’t actually been on my kindle for all that long, though I had pre-ordered it many months ago. However, it is one of those books that I would have promised myself I would read next, but never quite gotten to.

This was a much shorter read than I had realised, it took less than an hour to complete, so it fits the “quickie” bill perfectly.

The price and page length are clear indicators that this is a short book, so I held no high expectations of reading a deep or complex story. What we do get is more of an extended scene, a brief introduction with Donovan and December followed by the main body of the tale.


We only get Donovan’s point of view, I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and as far as Alpha’s go he was pretty decent, respectful and caring. If the book had been any longer I would have wanted the heroine’s viewpoint too but I could appreciate why the author chose not to use it on this occasion.


Overall it’s quite a beautiful and touching story, one that definitely left me frustrated and needing more of this pair. Both protagonists are more mature in years, which is always a bonus for those of us who won’t see 35 again! As long as you go in expecting a quick read rather than a layered story you won’t be disappointed.

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/59749547-donovan-s-girl

Genre – PNR/Omegaverse

Synopsis
No one should be alone on Christmas…
When Donovan checks in on the widow of a recently-deceased enforcer, he gets more than he bargained for.
Liv is alone, grieving, and going into heat.
Worried what she might do and unable to resist the instinctive need to care for the sweet, damaged Omega, Donovan decides to stay and see her through it. Whether she likes it or not.

~*~
Donovan’s Girl is a short Holiday story set in the world of The Sacred Omegas. Specifically, December’s world, and features appearances by several characters in the series.

Book Review · Omegaverse · PNR

#BookReview #Omegaverse #PNR // The Alpha’s Salvation by Marlowe Roy

The Alpha’s Salvation
by Marlowe Roy



I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I started this book – particularly as I hadn’t read the blurb. Added in to that was that this is a debut book, and reading those is very much a win-some/lose-some situation. Thankfully this was very much the former, so much so that I was more than a little astounded by the high standard of writing and cannot wait to read more by this author. Not only was this a great story, it was a wonderful romance too.


Kess is an Omega-in-hiding which, along with slick, knotting, heats and nesting (though we don’t see the latter in this book), is almost de rigueur in OV stories. Hunter was a no-nonsense Alpha, in charge, tough and of the opinion that Omegas belong with Alphas. However he didn’t believe in making decisions for them and was willing to accept Kess was her own person. Both protagonists are immensely likeable, with flaws that only add to their appeal. Life hadn’t been kind to either one of them, and a lack of understanding leads to difficult times.


The development of their burgeoning relationship was so finely crafted, emotions were believable as were actions and reactions to situations. Both characters underwent growth, needing to let go of past hurts and reach a point where they could not only hear what the other said, but also believe in the veracity of it. Those scenes at the ocean – oh my they tore at my heart! They also convinced me beyond any doubt that this pair truly were meant for one another.


Set in a dystopian future where the world felt a little wild west and a touch Amish, with a sprinkling of tribal society thrown in for good measure. Little reminders were woven into the story to remind us that there had been technology, electricity, cars etc in the past. Kess wore pants, not a skirt and, due to having lived pre-disaster, Hunter used “baby” as an affectionate nickname. I liked how it kept the story future-dystopian rather than fantasy or alternate reality. The world building was carefully layered throughout the story, slowly revealing different facets of this new “society”. Extra points to the author for Old Tacoma, which perfectly answered the very few doubts/questions I had about the dystopian world.


The omegaverse elements are done with a very light touch by a gentle hand, so I would happily recommend this book to all romance fans, not just those who enjoy the sub-genre.



Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Dystopian PNR

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/59350540-the-alpha-s-salvation

Synopsis
Kess found a haven in this remote Beta town, but it would only last if she could keep her Omega nature a secret.

Abused by Alphas, unwanted by Betas, she scraped out a quiet, lonely life and tried to heal her broken spirit. But one fateful glimpse of a grizzled Alpha ended her fragile ruse forever. Catching an Alpha’s eye was a fate she had feared… Until him.

Hunt was tired. A holdover from another time, an Alpha with no family or mate, life had little joy or warmth to offer him.

But he was still the most formidable Alpha in these parts, and a sense of duty to his men kept him moving forward. He couldn’t have known a stop-over in a small Beta village would change the course of his fate, and certainly never pictured himself with an Omega of his own… Until her.



Book Review · Fantasy · Omegaverse

#BookReview #PNR #Omegaverse // The Heiress and the Orc by Finley Fenn

The Heiress and the Orc
Orc Sworn #2
by Finley Fenn

The Heiress and the Orc is an unusual mix of well-written fantasy and erotic romance. One doesn’t normally see the level of world-building, character complexity, and multi-layered plot in a book that is so sexually raw and, well, filthy! There are chunks of this book that really are NOT safe to read in a public place, delightfully erotic and so hot my kindle was in danger of combusting.


Ella’s early decisions do have the possibility of alienating some readers. Despite what she witnessed at her engagement party, as a woman Ella has no real autonomy in her society, so I empathized with her thoughts. The only way to retain all that she has left, all that holds meaning and security for her, is to marry a man of standing. So I could fully understand her seemingly “selfish” choices – would you really allow everything your father had worked for to be given to a stranger? Would you happily give up your beloved home just based on a possibility? Especially when you have been practically brainwashed for the last few years of your life into believing it is the right thing to do. Sometimes we have to allow the head to overrule the heart!


Natt was harder to pin down, mainly because the book is entirely from Ella’s viewpoint. I did feel as though I knew his core character, but clearly, he had motivations and reasons to which we were not privy. That said he was solid and consistent, there were no abrupt about turns with Natt and his adoration of Ella was impossible to miss. This is quite a long book with, at times, a meandering pace. Some of this is to allow us to discover more about the characters and as a character-driven reader that suited me well. However, for someone who is more about the plot, this could feel slow.


The author does a wonderful job of foreshadowing throughout, whilst throwing enough smoke and shadows to leave the reader shattered by a totally unexpected curveball thrown at the end of the book. Whilst I didn’t quite ugly cry, I definitely shed tears for poor Ella. Despite how betrayed she had been, despite how hurt, she didn’t sully her love for Natt by acting the woman scorned, she remained the better person, she accepted her fate and she was bloody amazing. Did Nattfar need to grovel more? I don’t believe so because he was willing to sacrifice all that he had worked so hard to gain, finally (and possibly a touch late!!!) ready to give up everything to protect Ella. So despite him having been the most selfish, manipulative piece of work I’ve ever met as a hero, I found it as easy to forgive him as Ella did. Though he definitely owed her big time!


If I could wish for one thing, it would have been to better understand the origins of the conflict between Orcs and Humans. That may have been explored more fully in Book #1 (The Lady and the Orc), however in a book marketed as standalone this kind of detail needs to be creatively woven into each story. This was definitely good enough to make me interested in reading more of the series and is perfect for those who love their romance on the very steamy side.


Rating: 4 out of 5.

Fantasy Romance

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50935559-the-heiress-and-the-orc

Synopsis
Once, he was her dearest friend… but now he’s a brutal, terrifying monster.
In a world of recently warring orcs and men, Ella Riddell is determined to ignore it all. She’s the wealthiest heiress in the realm — and soon, she’s to wed a lord, and become a real lady.
Until the night her engagement-party ends in utter disaster, and Ella runs for the forest — and straight into the powerful arms of a hulking, deadly orc. And it’s not just any orc. It’s Natt. The orc Ella made a secret, foolish pledge to, many years past…
He’s huge and shameless and vicious, not at all the gangly, laughing daredevil Ella remembers. And he’s here with one shocking, scandalous aim: to wreak vengeance on Ella’s betrothed. With her. With her hunger. Her surrender. Her undoing…
Ella knows she should run, even if this deadly enemy was once a friend. Even if his scent drags up a dark, forbidden longing. Even if his kisses are the sweetest, filthiest thing she’s ever tasted in her life…
But will Ella truly risk her perfect future, for an orc? Will she face the bitter truths of the past, and brave the terrifying Orc Mountain, before more war rises to destroy them all?


A dark, angsty, full-length, friends to lovers fantasy romance. Comes after The Lady and the Orc, but also reads as a standalone. Happily ever after guaranteed.




Book Review · Omegaverse · Science Fiction/Dystopian

#BookReview #Sci-Fi // Rescuing Red by Leann Ryans and V.T. Bonds

Rescuing Red
Sci-Fi Fairytale Fusions #1
by Leann Ryans & V.T. Bonds 



At 65% and I’ve totally stalled with this book. It isn’t terrible in the same way that boiled potatoes aren’t but just like those non-descript and rather bland starchy items it just didn’t have enough flavour to hold my interest.



I found the heroine to be rather a drip, full of rash decisions and impulsive choices. In her defence she is very young and the way she was written reflected those childhood fairytale heroines. However I moved on from those stories for a reason – I’m no longer that little girl but am an adult woman.



The hero was much more to my taste, though I’ve just had to look up what his name was, which shows how forgettable the whole reading experience was. He’s called Blaide by the way – I’m surprised I did forget that because I felt the name didn’t suit him and was far to reminiscent of watching UK Gladiator’s back in the 1990’s.



For me this was pleasant but unmemorable, it just didn’t have the grit, depth or emotional impact I look for in a story. It was, for me, words on a page rather than a tale that drew me in and held me captivated.





Rating: 2 out of 5.

Fannce

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/58500622-rescuing-red

Synopsis
Once Upon a Time…
In a land where grandmothers live planets away instead of on the other side of the woods, Liz finds herself in trouble.
Hindsight is twenty-twenty, but she’d risk it all again to help her Nana.
When danger catches her scent, will her knight in… fur and fury… rescue her from the beasts?
And who’s going to save Red from the Wolf?


From two International Bestselling authors comes an exciting blend of traditional tales with the wonders of science fiction, taking the stories you love and twisting them to fit brand new worlds. Although darkness lurks within the pages of our Sci-Fi Fairytale Fusions, each one boasts a Happily Ever After for our hero and his mate. These steamy romances feature the ABO dynamic, thrilling action, and intense situations.

Are you ready to find your next alien addiction?





Book Review · Omegaverse · Science Fiction/Dystopian

#BookReview #PNR #Omegaverse // Warden by Cari Silverwood

Warden
Ravaged #1
by Cari Silverwood  



I nodded. It did seem crazy.
And a few days ago, I was sitting in a café discussing kink with Charlotte.
I wasn’t ruling out an apocalypse or a flash flood of killer bees or ice cream any time soon.

Isolde, Warden

With the exception of Rough Surrender this is probably the sweetest story the author has written. I’m sure she’d object vociferously to the word “sweet”, and rightly so, but given how dub-con and dark most of her work is this felt quite light in comparison. It also felt incredibly hot and smutilicious, with smexy times that will have you getting through a bumper pack of AA batteries, *wink wink*. Great writing, fabulous characters and a wonderful plot all add up to one crazy good read.



Gideon is one seriously gorgeous Mauleon and despite the fact that he started off as very much the bad guy, what with kidnapping Earth girls and the like, he soon earned his redemption, proving himself to be an absolute delightful hero – blue nodules and all. Isolde was just as wonderful a main character, slightly mad, utterly submissive, determinedly strong and full of fire. She was definitely a girl who made lemonade from the lemons of life. This pair utterly captivated me, we see them grow and adapt to the changes in their lives set against a backdrop of mystery, intrigue and the fight against bureaucracy.



As already mentioned, this features the much loved leonine Mauleon male. It does, however, read standalone and is set in space rather than the home planet, featured in RuledCondemned and Judged: A Dark Sci-fi Romance. As well as a lust-fuelled, kinky romance there is also the ubiquitous quest to undertake, in this case the pursuit of personhood. This is one packed-to-the-gills adventure involving sentient swords, #OrcsOnABus, Wendetta’s, hiding in lost storage rooms with lost storage container lids and sex.

They had arranged a bus.
A big yellow bus.
Here I was, in a line of ferociously armed orcs, with weapons strapped to every part of them,
waiting to board a bus. About the only thing I agreed with about this was the black cross-hatching
down the side with HAZARD written on the yellow bits.
The axes they dragged and carried, those I could not assimilate.
They were just plain wrong.

There were some amazing supporting characters who ALL need their own books, *ahem* Jinx, Hark, Kragga, Charlotte… *ahem*. In this one, purple singularities generated courtesy of Grut lead to some unexpected (well unexpected for the “victims”) consequences. Those consequences lead to sexual compulsions, sexual adaptations and sexual adventures. There were probably other things too but I was slightly distracted by the nooky.

Whenever I looked at him, a frisson possessed me,
as if I’d connected to a mildly live cable.
I had to ban myself from dragging my gaze over him, non-stop.
He was deliciously handsome, rugged, and made my girly hormone engine rev into overdrive.
And I was pretty certain my brakes weren’t working, and my tires were on fire.
Phew.


Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Science Fiction Romance

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/58946639-warden

Synopsis
I never thought I had any weird or amazing destiny.
Until the night I’m scooped up by a clawed and fanged alien called a mauleon.
I’m a grocery store assistant and my name is Isolde.
I should be curled up in a ball sobbing, but that’s not me.
I will escape, but I’m trapped on this huge, fossilized starship. My only companion is a snarky, talking sword.
To my shame, something is forcing my body to change and I’m craving his touch.
We are both mutating. His muscles bulge with new growth. Silver streaks mar his skin.
He was supposed to sell me, but I can’t stop myself from crawling to him, begging, and whimpering for more.
Why is love always so complicated? And what is this heat…

I’m pinned to the wall by his claws and the world dissolves into a steamy, swaying fog. The panting, gasping, and probing of places seem endless, as do my tormented cries.

★ ★ ★ ★

This book contains unrestrained compulsions, lionlike aliens, orcs, and adventures that go where no grocery store assistant has gone before.
Also #OrcsOnABus. A yellow bus with HAZARD written on the side, to be exact.