#BookReview #UrbanFantasy // Twisted Pretty Things by Ariana Nash

Twisted Pretty Things
Shadows of London #1

Ariana Nash

Fans of Ms Nash will probably know she also writes under the name Pippa DaCosta. This book is the perfect fusion of both those halves, a fast paced story that is chock full of surprises, intrigue and lies. All the passion and heat of the AN name blended with the world building and complexity of PDC books. This had the best of everything the author has to offer and was a 5 star read for me the entire length from start to finish. I am totally enraptured by the series already and cannot wait for the next book to be released!



Dom, our slightly tarnished hero, will absolutely steal your heart, which will then be repeatedly battered as he rebounds from learning one shocking/crushing/terrible secret to another. Hindsight had me spotting all the foreshadowing and clues that had been cleverly woven into the story, but I never ONCE guessed at the myriad of the twists and turns as I was reading this.



Just as I thought the story was complete the author threw in that little twist, right at the end. Because she is cruel and relishes her power to torment us all. Added in to all that were hints of a love triangle – and please don’t ask me to chose between EITHER of those two delicious morsels of untrustworthiness. Oh yes, we can’t leave it at Dom being used and abused by life, downtrodden and outcast because he is a latent. Oh no, we have to have two extremely hot “possibles” messing with his libido, head and heart, both of whom are keeping secrets from him, lying to him and manipulating him for their own ends.



I am totally hooked on this series, are Hollywood and Kempthorne good guys doing bad things for good reasons or bad guys who are good at lying? Oh the dilemmas and conundrums that this pair elicit. There is also the fact that the author’s long term plans for these men has me more than a little worried, she has a track record for being mean not only to her characters but also us poor readers. My mind is spinning and whirling with all the possibilities, dreading she might pull a Nye, or a Brendan or even a Julian move in a future book, just for the fun of shattering my poor heart.



If the words “Urban Fantasy” and “M/M” set your heart and mind aflutter then you definitely need to be reading this series. Oh and when you do you will fully understand why I couldn’t resist this final gif…


description

Rating: 5 out of 5.

MM PNR Romance

Age 16+ MM Sex scenes, profanities


Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55244683-twisted-pretty-things


Synopsis
Something wicked is moving in the shadows of London…

In the underground world of glitzy illegal auctions, fast cars, and stolen magical artifacts, John “Dom” Domenici knows he’s out of his depth. But he needs the job at Kempthorne & Co like he needs to breathe. The alternative—going back to the organized crime gangs of London’s East End—is unthinkable.

So when Alexander Kempthorne, boss of Kempthorne & Co Artifact Retrieval Agency, wants him on a special case to track down an illegal artifact dealer, Dom can’t say no.

It shouldn’t matter that Kempthorne’s world is full of deadly secrets. It shouldn’t matter that the billionaire is sexy as sin, and it really shouldn’t matter how there’s an American agent stalking Dom, an American who knows more than he should about Dom’s case, including the real reason Alexander Kempthorne hired Dom.

The only thing that really matters to Dom is solving the case and finding the artifact dealer. Because there are worse things in London than a conflicted billionaire and a trigger-happy American. Something wicked is stalking London’s streets, and if Dom doesn’t stop it, its shadows will rise and consume them all.

REVIEW – Fantasy Romance // Infernal Sin by Ariana Nash

Infernal Sin
(Primal Sin #3)
by Ariana Nash

“See that star there? The brightest one? Brighter than all the rest?”
He saw a whole lot of stars, but there was one to the north that shone steady and true.
“I see it.”
“Seraphim told me if yah fly hard enough an’ high enough, you can reach that twinkly spec.”
Severn was fairly certain that was impossible.
A few miles up and the air became too thin to breathe.
But who was he to argue with Seraphim?
“Yeah?” He side eyed Aerius.
The Rayvern King smirked, and there was a whole lot of feeling in that one smile.
“You got this, Severn, High Lord of Red Manor. No longer lost.”
An unexpected lump of emotion lodged in his throat. He tried to swallow it,
but the damn thing didn’t budge.

Deceit, betrayal, lies, and the pursuit of truth and justice, Infernal Sin by Ariana Nash has it all. It also has some magnificently swoon worthy moments that would melt even the most hardest of hearts, along with passionate scenes so scorching hot I’m surprised my kindle survived the experience.


Severn hands down will always be my favourite character from the series. Who can resist a demon with enough love to bring an angel to his knees? Supremely confident in his demoness (demonity?) but with a vulnerability that made me weak at the knees. I just want to wrap my Severn up in cotton wool and protect him from the big, bad, nasty world. Mikhail I really liked, all that firm angel butt and black feathers to boot, but I would happily get on my knees and worship Severn in any way he saw fit, for the rest of my life.


There was a point, fairly early on, where I thought the two main protagonists would spend a chunk of this book apart. And that was a most unwelcome prospect. Thankfully I was quickly proved wrong and instead got to spend time wallowing in the smexiness that is Mikahil and Severn. Please don’t think that the book just consisted of angel-demon hotness. It’s just a wonderful side dish to a spellbinding, twisty and thoroughly captivating story that had me on the edge of my seat.


Finally I have to mention Solo, who definitely requires his own book of angel delightfulness. It will also give Luxen, and maybe even Samiel, a shot at redemption. Because the only thing better than an MM Angel-Demon fest is an MMM one! I also need to know what happens to One, Two, Three, Four, Five and Six.


Rating: 5 out of 5.

LGBTQ Fantasy Romance

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56921315-infernal-sin

Synopsis
An angel and a demon fell in love, and the world went to war…

Branded a traitor by his own kind, Severn knows winning demons back will not be easy, but when High Lord Luxen steals Mikhail from his grasp, he has no choice. He’s going to need all the help he can get to find Mikhail, unseat Luxen as High Lord, and build a force to rival the vicious Guardian Angel Remiel’s. Or every last demon will die when the guardian descends on London.

Weakened by his treatment in Haven, Mikhail finds himself at the mercy of the demon High Lord. A sly, powerful concubi demon, Luxen is able to manipulate the minds and hearts of those around him. Including Mikhail’s. Is Mikhail’s love for Severn strong enough to withstand Luxen’s charm? Or will he break, unleashing an ancient god’s terrible vengeance upon them all?

Photo by Takeshi Arai on Pexels.com



REVIEW – MM Fantasy Romance \\ Curse of the Dark Prince by Ariana Nash

Curse of the Dark Prince
(The Prince’s Assassin #3)
by Ariana Nash

He was heat and fire, rock and iron, and after everything they’d survived, after every hurt and obstacle, impossibly, Nikolas Yazdan was Vasili’s.

Niko and Vasili’s story has reached it’s epic conclusion and boy do you need to gird your loins to read this one. It puts you through the emotional wringer, stands you up, dusts you down and then shoves you back through it again. Repeatedly.

Nikolas kissed him then – so softly, so simply. It was nothing, really. A brush of the lips, but if it were the last thing Vasili felt, he’d gladly take its touch with him to meet the gods.

I may have cried at this book. More than once. It didn’t quite slay me in the same way that the Silk & Steel series did, but this author continually sets the bar so very high that this is still an amazing read.

Niko blinked at the man beside him. Because there he was. His hidden Vasili.
The man he loved.

Old friends become enemies, new alliances are formed and help comes from the most surprising of places. The story rattles along at a fair pace, twisting and turning and knocking you sideways at the most unexpected of times. The story had everything I wanted, adventure, emotion, desperation, hope, despair and glimpsed moments of what could have been…

He wanted to build a new life somewhere far away from it all, where the prince didn’t have the weight of a crown on his head or a curse in his veins. Just a cabin in the woods, an open fire, and a burbling brook.
But those dreams were a fool’s fantasy.
He’d seen this done. He’d keep his word because it was all he had left to give the man he loved.
Vasili’s last order would also be his own.

My poor fragile heart is battered and yet I am completely satisfied and replete with how this adventure ended. I hugely recommend this series.

He was wildness, like the sea, and Vasili would willingly drown in him.

Of course, Nikolas wasn’t a threat – well, not like this. He was a threat at other times. But in these quiet moments, he was everything Vasili needed him to be and so much more.


Rating: 4 out of 5.

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55940345-curse-of-the-dark-prince


Synopsis
With the powerful cities of Seran and Loreen having fallen to elves, and the dark flame escaping its bonds, Prince Vasili Caville’s plight has never been more desperate. But for the first time in his lifetime, he’s not alone. With the formidable Nikolas Yazdan at his side, not all is lost.

But Nikolas has changed. The Yazdan legacy has caught up with him, and as strong and stubborn as he is, nobody can resist the flame’s call for long. For all his words of honor and sacrifice, Vasili fears he’s losing Nikolas, and with him any chance of defeating the elves for good.

Love, power, control. To save both himself and Nikolas, Vasili must surrender it all and embrace everything a Caville is destined to be. For beneath the broken palace, hidden inside its heart, lies the answer to everything. And all it will cost, is love.

Photo by Maycon Marmo

Can’t Wait Wednesday // Wednesday Shelf Control

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they’re books that have yet to be released. It’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine

#CWW – Curse of the Dark Prince
(The Prince’s Assassin #3) by Ariana Nash

The final part of an epic fantasy romance trilogy, I can’t wait to find out what happens to Vasili and Nico. I really enjoy the author’s prose and characterisation – she always manages to make me love the bad guy in the end!

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55940345-curse-of-the-dark-prince
Release Date – 19th March 2021

Synopsis
With the powerful cities of Seran and Loreen having fallen to elves, and the dark flame escaping its bonds, Prince Vasili Caville’s plight has never been more desperate. But for the first time in his lifetime, he’s not alone. With the formidable Nikolas Yazdan at his side, not all is lost.
But Nikolas has changed. The Yazdan legacy has caught up with him, and as strong and stubborn as he is, nobody can resist the flame’s call for long. For all his words of honor and sacrifice, Vasili fears he’s losing Nikolas, and with him any chance of defeating the elves for good.
Love, power, control. To save both himself and Nikolas, Vasili must surrender it all and embrace everything a Caville is destined to be. For beneath the broken palace, hidden inside its heart, lies the answer to everything. And all it will cost, is love.

The Prince’s Assassin series comes to its explosive conclusion in Curse of the Dark Prince, the third and final book. Coming early 2021.

Deep Blue Sea (Heartstone Thief #1.5) by Pippa DaCosta

Welcome to Shelf Control — an original feature created and hosted by Bookshelf Fantasies.

Shelf Control is a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up! For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out the introductory post, here.

Want to join in? Shelf Control posts go up every Wednesday. See the guidelines at the bottom of the linked post, and jump on board!

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42901030-deep-blue-sea

This book has sat on my kindle for far too long, particularly considering I really enjoy everything Pippa DaCosta writes. I’m planning on reading this during March, making it the 10th TBR book I will have read this year. It doesn’t sound many but it’s already more than I managed in the whole of 2020 so I count it as a huge win!

Synopsis
On the Night of Bleeding Hearts, when the moon is fat and the ocean calm, Blue and her siren sisters transform.
With poisonous songs on their lips and bloodlust in their hearts, they emerge from the waters to comb the shores, hunting lost souls, thieves and pirates, men with violence in their veins. For each death gifts the sirens a new song to sing.
As the most ruthless and cunning of her sisters, Blue is a legend among her kind. But on this night, when the sea delivers the sirens a stricken merchant vessel, Blue discovers a thief among the crew. A thief with a warm heart and a troubled past.
And now Blue has a choice. Kill a good man or lose her voice.
Forever.

So my fellow book lovers – what are you currently reading and is it from your TBR list?

Can’t Wait Wednesday

Can’t Wait Wednesday

Curse of the Dark Prince
(The Prince’s Assassin #3)
by Ariana Nash

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they’re books that have yet to be released. It’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55940345-curse-of-the-dark-prince

Genre – Fantasy / MM Romance

Expected Release Date – 19th March 2021

Synopsis
With the powerful cities of Seran and Loreen having fallen to elves, and the dark flame escaping its bonds, Prince Vasili Caville’s plight has never been more desperate. But for the first time in his lifetime, he’s not alone. With the formidable Nikolas Yazdan at his side, not all is lost.
But Nikolas has changed. The Yazdan legacy has caught up with him, and as strong and stubborn as he is, nobody can resist the flame’s call for long. For all his words of honor and sacrifice, Vasili fears he’s losing Nikolas, and with him any chance of defeating the elves for good.
Love, power, control. To save both himself and Nikolas, Vasili must surrender it all and embrace everything a Caville is destined to be. For beneath the broken palace, hidden inside its heart, lies the answer to everything. And all it will cost, is love.
The Prince’s Assassin series comes to its explosive conclusion in Curse of the Dark Prince

Can’t Wait Wednesday

Can’t Wait Wednesday
Reign Of Darkness
by Ariana Nash

Amazon- – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08FT7MQ8D/

Genre- MM Fantasy

“Know your place, Nikolas.”
“Under the heel of your boot, your highness?”

After a terrible inferno destroys the Caville palace, and with the people of Loreen turned against him, Prince Vasili is left with no choice but to flee his ancestral home, leaving his brother Amir to proclaim himself King.
But Vasili’s life isn’t the only one left in ashes. King Amir has not forgotten Nikolas Yazdan—a lord’s bastard son and Vasili’s favorite pet. With forbidden power in his veins, Amir has become more than Niko can fight alone.
Thrust together with Vasili once more, Niko must travel south, to a land of pirates and thieves, of mystery and magic. A land of opportunity for a manipulative prince and his reluctant assassin.
But just as Nikolas begins to believe Vasili might be worth fighting for—that Loreen can be saved with Vasili on the throne—the dark flame trapped in the royal bloodline unravels its ancient bonds.
One prince must control the unrelenting power desperate for its escape. The other must die.
Niko thought he knew which prince he could trust, but he’s been fooled before and as Vasili’s true motives are revealed, Niko finds himself at the mercy of Prince Vasili once more. Only this time, there’s more than love at stake. The fate of the world rests on Niko discovering the truth about the flame, about the cursed Cavilles, and his place in their doomed destiny.

Review //\\ Eternal Sin by Ariana Nash

Eternal Sin (Primal Sin #2) by Ariana Nash

Photo by Rakicevic Nenad on Pexels.com

Mikhail pulled the stars down from heaven because giving this a mere 5 was simply not adequate.

It was too much, and everything, and not enough.

It will never be enough because I want to stay with this pair forever.

Oh Severn, Oh Mikhail, what a star-crossed pair of lovers you are. The lies and secrets of demon and angel-kind have torn this pair asunder but I still cling to the hope that love, and Amii, will find a way to save this gods-fated pair. There are twists and turns in this tale, there are lies told and lies uncovered. Mikhail, not surprisingly, continues to struggle with his feelings, after all angels aren’t meant to fall in love, and definitely not with demons.


This book gave me more feels than I ever knew existed. Mikhail and Severn’s love hurts my heart in all the best possible ways. There is something quite magical about this pair, both when they are apart but even more so when they are together. Not surprising really given their divine heritage. Nothing, absolutely nothing, about this book was predictable. Even as I had only a few pages left to read I still had absolutely no idea what twist would hit me – or one of our heroes – next.


Ariana Nash’s prose took a blender to my soul, in a good way! I felt every single emotion, experienced the heartache and agony, drowned in every soul searing kiss, lusted after a dark angel and his golden haired demon, railed at the injustices that befell them. And every single time I felt a smidgeon of hope, some dire peril threatened to rip it all away again. Bravo Ms Nash you have truly left me an emotional wreck, one that will not be set to rights until Infernal Sin is published!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Eternal Sin by Ariana Nash

Genre – MM PNR/ Demons and Angels Romance
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50728360-eternal-sin
*SPOILERS BELOW FOR BOOK 1*
For as long as angels and demons have warred over London, battle lines have never been crossed and humans never hurt.
Now, everything has changed.
More powerful than ever, nothing can stop Mikhail’s crusade of vengeance against the demon who betrayed him.
Trapped as an angel, Severn is running out of time. To regain his true form, he must retrieve his wings, but there’s one problem: Mikhail. The guardian has Severn’s wings gruesomely displayed in the broken City of Aerie, high above London. Weak and heartsick, Severn’s power failing, he has no choice but to lie, cheat, and illusion his way back into Mikhail’s cold heart or die trying.
Destiny thought them fated mates.
Destiny was wrong.
The war and the fate of the world hinge on their shattered love. Can it be saved?

Photo by Takeshi Arai on Pexels.com

30 Day Book Challenge

Day #27 – An unexpected plot twist

There are two books I’ve read recently that fit this prompt. The first is King of the Dark, by Ariana Nash, an MM dark fantasy romance. Julian – well lets just say that one took me by surprise! The other book is Perfection by Kitty Thomas, it’s not often plot twists surprise me but this one did just that.

Review //\\ King of the Dark

King of the Dark (The Prince’s Assassin #1) by Ariana Nash

In the red corner we have Niko, in the blue corner we have Vasili and in the rainbow corner we have Julian.


I have to admit to being as gullible as Niko, believing in the lies, fooled by the smoke and mirrors and devastated by the betrayals. This is such a twisty story, that sometimes it was difficult to know which way was up. Whilst this isn’t truly a love triangle, it is one heck of a complicated situation and it just goes to show that there is a very fine line between love and hate. Niko’s scenes with… well you’ll have to read and find out.. they were in parts tender and sweet, but also scorching hot and passionate. So unexpected from such a reserved and aloof man.


The story is written entirely from Niko’s point of view, and whilst I would have liked at least one other point of view, it was necessary to retain some mystery and an element of the unknown. Strangely enough, I felt as though I knew Julian and Vasili better than I did Niko, even though I’d only seen them through his eyes. It also turned out that both of them managed to surprise me more than once! I’m not sure why I struggled to connect with and understand Niko for a chunk of the book, though I suspect it was partly because he was so adrift and didn’t really know himself anymore.


There’s a part of me thinks Niko should just stay at his smithy, but that man is a soldier through and through. Loyal to his country, if not the crown, and determined to honour his fallen comrades. Just thinking through that last scene at the castle has made me realise that Vasili has a long way to go before I can like him. We can see throughout that he is a slippery fish and I have a feeling there is a lot more to learn about our erstwhile heroes, not to mention a lot more deceit, manipulation and heartache. Role on Reign of Darkness.

Title – King of the Dark (The Prince’s Assassin #1)
Author – Ariana Nash
Genre – Dark MM Fantasy
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/54359996-king-of-the-dark

“Your love is worthless, it’s your hate I need.” ~Prince Vasili Caville
When King Talos Caville surrendered the war to the elves, soldier Nikolas Yazdan vowed never to serve the royals again. He said the same to the prince who tried to buy his loyalty, and learned the Cavilles don’t take no for an answer.
Whipped for his insolence, Nikolas is forced into slavery in a palace full of vicious, brutal royals. And Prince Vasili Caville is the worst of all. Malicious and cruel, the prince is more viper than man, and someone inside the palace wants him dead. Nikolas would kill the prince himself if not for one thing: Julian, the prince’s personal guard and Niko’s light in the dark. If Nikolas doesn’t submit to Prince Vasili and discover who is plotting against him, Julian will suffer.
But there’s more wrong in the palace than just the prince. The king is on his deathbed, the ferocious elves are creeping closer to the great city of Loreen, and madness stalks the hallways. There’s poison in the Caville court, and if Nikolas doesn’t discover the real reason Prince Vasili tried to buy him with a bag of coin, the palace, the city, and everything he loves, will be lost forever.

Photo by Susanne Jutzeler on Pexels.com

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday Turns 10!

I’m joining in with That Artsy Reader Girl and her meme, Top Ten Tuesday. It’s a very Happy 10th Birthday to this meme, so the floor is open for the choice of topic.

I was considering using the very first prompt ever, but my childhood was a loooong time ago, and I’m not sure I could remember all of my favourite books, so have decided to pick my favourite 10 books of the year so far.

The Velvet Chair – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/06/21/review-the-velvet-chair/
Resistance – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/05/09/review-resistance/
Myth of Omega – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/04/11/book-review-myth-of-omega-books-1-3/
Missing In Action – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/03/30/review-missing-in-action/
Primal Sin – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/03/26/review-primal-sin/
Midnight Fae Academy 1 – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/02/23/book-review-midnight-fae-academy-1/
Destroyed – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/02/13/destroyed-by-eva-dresden-review/
Twilight Seeker – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/02/02/twilight-seeker/
The Escape Artist – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/01/16/the-escape-artist-by-kitty-thomas/
Sin & Spirit – https://louisesbookbuzz.home.blog/2020/01/11/sin-spirit/

Do you have a top ten to share? Let me know and I’ll come by and comment.