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.
Six For Sunday is hosted by A Little But A Lot, please do go and visit them! This month the prompts have been all about series, so of course we are rounding of the theme with a favourite series. I’m not sure if I can genuinely narrow it down to just six of them, so at some point I may be picking names out of a hat!
This series ticks so many of my boxes. First of all it satisfies my craving for really well written science fiction, with its awesome world building. These books could NOT be transferred to an Earth setting and still work, unlike a disappointing proportion of sci-fi romance currently on the market. There are elements of both dubious and non-consensual acts, though there is no rape or abuse, just lots of boundary pushing and steaming hot kinkiness. There is a lot of political (with a small p) sub-text too, little thought provoking elements that reflect ways we could and should be improving our world. I always think that if Terry Pratchett had been a woman and included naughty sex scenes in his books, he would have produced something similar to this.
KF Breene is the ‘straight’ equivalent of Cari Silverwood. Both write scorching hot stories, with strong female characters, outstanding world building and humour. However whilst Ms Silverwood delights with her bondage, humiliation and submission, Ms Breene is more mainstream, with vanilla characters.
Where as the previous two authors include sex scenes in their books, Lindsay Buroker doesn’t. That is saved for her Ruby Lionsdrake pen name. The Emperor’s Edge series is much more of a steampunk suspense, though there are some subtle elements of romance within the series. An epically slow burn and very frustrating romance that is very much in the backseat. These books are first and foremost science fiction, rather similar to Anne McCaffrey or Mercedes Lackey.
This series took me back to my David Eddings days. The Sanctuary series is a tale of daring do, of brave knights and evil villains. The world building is complex and captivating, I couldn’t read these books quickly enough when I first discovered them, and I remember waiting anxiously for the last few to be released so I could discover the fate of Cyrus, Vara and their friends.
Yes I know I mention this series and author a LOT. No I’m not being sponsored, or paid, nor am I the author of these amazing stories. But this series made me weep buckets, made me swoon, made me hate, made me elated and shattered me repeatedly. I also laughed like a nutter at some of Sota’s one liners. There is romance, because that’s what I mainly read, but it’s very slow burn and, as with Lindsay Buroker’s books, it’s secondary to the plot, mainly fade-to-black but is an integral part of the story.
I can’t do a post without including my favourite genre of dark contemporary romance, so here it is. Book 1 of this series is a very dark tale indeed. It is sprinkled with scenes that require trigger warnings of the sexual abuse kind, since Thalia is kidnapped and being trained as a submissive sex slave. I found it too dark the first time I tried reading it, but after moving to darker sci-fi/fantasy stories (which my mind strangely finds easier to accept, possibly because they feel less ‘real’) I came back to this series. The book went from a DNF to a 5+ star read. I then completed the rest of the series which, whilst not as dark or the first book, also has it’s moments.
Six Book Series you can’t wait to get into or Series you’re dying to read
Six For Sunday is a meme hosted each week by A Little But A Lot. May’s theme is series, with the prompt this week being a series you are looking forward to reading or want to get into.
There are so many I could choose for this. I have The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King, by J.R.R. Tokien sat unread on my bookshelves, along with Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games, Catching Fire and Mockingjay Trilogy. However as a HUGE advocate of indie authors, I’m going to feature some of the back lists that I have on my radar but haven’t yet succeeded in reading.
The shameful truth about my list is that I actually own many of the books mentioned, and have done for some considerable time. On a positive note I HAVE started making headway through clearing books from my “bought-it-so-read-it” list. So at least things are now moving in the right direction!
Due to their obsession with censorship, Amazon banned the individual books of Marissa Honeycut’s Life of Anna series it does, however, still sell the ‘box set’ book. They also refuse to sell the first book of Lily White’s Masters series, that book is available on Smashwords and the author’s website.
“They call me devil, liar, thief. In whispers, they call me Soul Eater. They’re right. I’m all those things—and more.” Kicked out of the underworld and cursed to walk this earth for all eternity, Ace Dante finds solace in helping others avoid the wrath of the gods. But when warrior-bitch, Queen of Cats, and Ace’s ex-wife, Bastet, hires him to stop whoever is slaughtering her blessed women, Ace is caught between two of the most powerful deities to have ever existed: Isis and Osiris. The once-revered gods aren’t dead. They’re back. And Ace is in their way. Welcome to a New York where the ancient gods roam. Dark, action-packed urban fantasy for fans of Richard Kadrey, Jim Butcher, Kevin Hearne and Ilona Andrews.
Soul Eater complete series reading order: Hidden Blade, #1 Witches’ Bane, #2 See No Evil, #3 Scorpion Trap, #4 Serpent’s Game, #5 Edge of Forever, #6
Supernatural Bounty Hunter isn’t the sort of thing you see on LinkedIn. But with a rare type of magic like mine, I don’t have many options. So dangerous or not, the job is mine. And it was going fine, until an old as sin vampire stole my mark, and with it, my pay day. Knowing I’m poor and desperate, he has offered me a job. I’ll have to work by his side to help solve a top secret case. Everyone knows not to trust vampires. Especially a hot elder vampire. But without any other jobs coming up, I’m stuck. As I uncover a web of lies and treachery, revealing an enemy I didn’t know existed, the truth of my identity is threatened. I might make it out alive, only to end up in a gilded cage.
It is said that when war threatens the world, one individual will be selected by prophecy to lead the Shadow Warriors out of the Land of Mist and reclaim the freedom which has been stolen. Shanti has grown up under the constant threat of war. Since she helped her people defeat a raiding party by using a special power, she’s been a hunted woman. Carrying rare abilities and an uncanny fighting aptitude, Shanti is the only hope of salvation for her people. The problem is, she doesn’t believe in her own divinity, and when she flounders, she nearly fails in the duty hanging so heavy on her shoulders. It seems like any other day when Sanders and his band of misfit boys find a foreign woman clinging to life in the wastelands. Oblivious to the weapon they now have in their possession, they are content to harbor the mysterious woman until she is well enough to continue her journey. But when the war spreads its arms and lands on her borrowed doorstep, Shanti has no choice but to reveal her secrets, plunging her saviors into danger. If they band with her, they will face certain death. But to trade her to Xandre, the warlord desperate to add her to his war machine, would be to give up their entire way of life. War is coming. The only choice becomes: Which side do you choose?
A dark, twisted, depraved story of hope and love. Anna’s entire life was planned out before she was born. Her entire purpose is to serve those in control and be the perfect tool to control everyone around them. One man will seek to take her unique gifts into himself and become both the source of power and the hand that wields it. But Anna has a vision of a man. A man whom her Master is determined to discover and destroy. A man who will change Anna’s life forever. The Life of Anna follows the naive and innocent Anna as she enters a dark world of greed, politics, and an evil puppet master who pulls the strings to her world. And beyond. Readers be warned, for this journey is not for the faint of heart. You are about to venture into a world of dark plots, sinister villains, and deeply erotic taboo encounters. Are you brave enough to enter the Life of Anna?
I am a Master. You must know this fact to understand my story. I capture women. I break them down. And I rebuild them. If they are lucky, they are sold into the professional hands of another Master. If they are less fortunate, they are buried beneath the ground, never to be thought of again. I lust for the control, I demand absolute submission and my body yearns to warp the minds of those I train. Power is the only thing I’ll ever need and I am addicted to the feeling of ultimate control. I am wealthy, good-looking, educated and charming. And I am – in no way – a good man. I do not want love. I do not want kindness. She thought she could change me by giving me the two things I knew I never wanted. She was wrong.
“I own you. I have the piece of paper to prove it. It’s undeniable and unbreakable. You belong to me until you’ve paid off your debts.” Nila Weaver’s family is indebted. Being the first born daughter, her life is forfeit to the first born son of the Hawks to pay for sins of ancestors past. The dark ages might have come and gone, but debts never leave. She has no choice in the matter. She is no longer free. Jethro Hawk receives Nila as an inheritance present on his twenty-ninth birthday. Her life is his until she’s paid off a debt that’s centuries old. He can do what he likes with her—nothing is out of bounds—she has to obey. There are no rules. Only payments.
Each Wednesday is an opportunity to join in with Bookshelf Fantasies and their meme of ‘Shelf Control‘. The idea is to feature a book from your TBR list, we all have plenty to choose from there!
Last week I featured a book that I HAVE put on my upcoming reading schedule. As anyone who arc reads knows, if you don”t plan ahead you may have to forego eating and sleeping in order to complete them on time. I’m not much of a forward planner but I DO plan my arc/book reading.
One thing has become incredibly clear to Alexis and Kieran, if they hope to last in the arena of Demigods, they’ll need a more robust defense team. They must take two incredibly dangerous journeys, seeking the prized talents other Demigods would kill for. Except, there is a reason other Demigods don’t have these magical workers–they are as ruthless as they are dangerous, and the last thing they want is to be on a Demigod’s team. If that isn’t enough, Alexis has received an invitation from Demigod Lydia, the only Hades Demigod who hasn’t openly declared war. She’s talking like they could be allies, but those of Hades cannot be trusted. A trap is just as likely as a handshake. Still, it’s a chance they must take. Any one of these trips could be their last, but to back down would be the most dangerous of all.
This dropped on my ereader on Monday and despite all the other books on there clamoring to be read, I’m going to make this one a priority. The books in the series are NOT standalone but they are fast-paced, humorous, steamy and action-packed. K.F. Breene‘s writing speaks to me on another level, one that involves strange rituals, magic of a dubious origin and the binding of my soul. But it’s so worth it!
SIN & SPIRIT (Demigods of San Francisco #4) by KF BREENE
Sometimes you just don’t know whether you want to hug an author or punch them!
Not only does K.F. Breenecrow bar a humongous amount of plot, funnies, smexy time, action and adventure into this book, she also throws a huge side serving of heart break into it too. It’s one of those books that you shouldn’t start reading just before bedtime, because there is NO WAY you will be able to put it down after only reading a few chapters. No sir-ee, once started this book will sink it’s claws into you so deeply that you won’t want to put it back down until you have read and savoured every single word.
Kieran, Alexis, Daisy, Mordecai and all the other amazing characters that inhabit this world, both real and spirit based are all absolutely amazing. There are so many different people and each one has their own distinct and unique voice in the book. Some are likeable, others immensely loveable, whilst a handful are vile and despicable beings but they all have depth and personality by the bucket full.
I never know where the story will take me, I never even begin to suspect what surprised are in store and what curve balls will be thrown in my direction. I do know that I will love every moment of it, even when I hate what is happening, even when my emotions are being stomped on, because the writing is so fantastic and the story so amazing that I can’t help myself.
I can’t wait for Sin & Lightning, I’ve already got it on pre-order.
The fourth book in the Amazon Charts Bestselling series by Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author, K.F. Breene.
Kieran has stepped up to take his place as the ruler of magical San Francisco. As his girlfriend I’m in the spotlight, and the Hades Demigods have taken notice. They want me on their team, and they don’t plan on asking nicely.
Kieran and I are both under fire. They will kill him to get to me, and they’ll take me by force if necessary. It is essential I learn more of my magic.
With no other options, I do what scares me the most – I summon the last Spirit Walker to help train me. Except, he’s a loose cannon with looser morals, and learning spirit is treacherous. I might evade the Demigods only to be lost in spirit forever.
So yesterday I revealed the more ‘real life’ favourite books of 2019, even if that real life was firmly fictional. Today I’m showcasing my favourite books from those worlds that definitely could only exist inside a writers ingenious mind. The sci-fi, fantasy, paranormal and omegaverse worlds where the ‘normal’ rules don’t apply and pretty much anything goes. They all still fall into the romance genre, because I love me some smut, but I still see them as different and distinct categories.
1. Delirium by Myra Danvers. Iris is hands down my favourite heroine of all times. I may want to marry her, I definitely want to have her children. Sadly Myra Danvers has also struggled with writing, and life, of late, so we are still awaiting the next book in the series. However I remember the days of only knowing my favourite author had released the next book in a series when I found it in the local book shop. I’m happy to wait, and should there never be any more Iris I would still recommend this book because it is simply that good.
2. Deliverance and Her Dark Legion by Pippa DaCosta. OK, so I’m cheating a lot little here, but I love both of these books for hugely different reasons and can’t even fit a cigarette paper between to separate the pair of them. Deliverance is a much awaited instalment of the 1000 Revolutions series. I totally love Caleb and One and was sooooo happy to catch up with them a little more. I wouldn’t like to say if you could read this stand alone, since I have read the rest of the books, but it was a complete segment of a story, so it’s a possibility. Her Dark Legion was the final book in the Messenger Chronicles and you definitely need to have read the previous 4 books. This is high on my list of All Time Favourite Series’ Ever, possibly only pipped by the series written under the authors other pen name, Ariana Nash. Her writing is phenomenal and both books are brim full of feels, have amazing characters and outstanding world building.
Set in a dystopian future this is a dark tale that contains dubious consent and non-consensual power exchanges. It left me speechless and hungering for more, much more, of this world. Especially since Drake had a barbed phallus…. oh the possibilities! This is another book that could have easily fitted into the Dark catagory, but since I was already having trouble slimming that one down the decision to place it here was an easy one to make.
“Wow. Dark, powerful, gut-wrenching, twisted, steamy and amazing. “ Lexi C Foss has the golden touch as far as I am concerned. I can’t believe I only discovered her work this year but am massively grateful that I did. Her writing holds my attention from the first line to the last, and fills me so full of feels like you wouldn’t believe. It is subtitled as book 1 of a series and I for one can’t wait to join in with more adventures.
Whilst Mesmer is a stand alone read, to fully understand and appreciate the story I would recommend having read the super dark, super amazing Dark Hearts series first. It contains a lot of world building that enhances the story in this book. Mesmers are a group of men who can mind control susceptible women, turning them into sex (or I guess any other kind of) slave. Sadly the mesmer gene, or the power it conveys, causes most of these men to travel down the wrong path. It’s a pretty dark read (co-written by Jennifer Bene what else can you expect?), with lots of boundary pushing kink to boot. Cari has a unique writing voice, it actually takes on its own character, Greta, in this book and is what makes her my favourite current author.
Actually I should be listing this under it’s series title of Demigod of San Francisco, since the books need to be read in chronological order. Written by the the amazingly talented KF Breene, this is only one of dozens of her must read books. The word awesome was invented to describe this lady and I recommend ALL her work to you.
Ariana Nash is the brand new MM, steamier version of the author Pippa DaCosta. In the Silk & Steel series she has created a world of dragon shifters, elves and humans. It’s a dark read, very dark and all trigger warnings should be seriously heeded. The romance between natural enemies Lysander (a dragon shifter prince) and Eroan (an elf charged with destroying dragons) develops slowly over the course of the trilogy. And with all great stories the course of true love never does run smooth. Some reviews talk about plot holes and inconsistent details, however if those reviewers had read books 1-3, they would have found that those questions were answered at some point.
An absolutely amazing new author sprang onto the scene this year, though she’s been on literotica for quite a while. I’ve already featured her sci-fi romance, Delirium, but such is my admiration for this author, and her work, that I’m also featuring her fantasy romance series. Ravenous Innocence, Insatiable Corruption and Lavish Destruction are the first three books of the series. I’m still not Asher’s biggest fan, but I’m slowly being persuaded by Ms Danvers that he deserves his chance with Mila, even if he has taken her power and bound her to him. The balance of power however was slowly shifting to her direction and I am eagerly awaiting more books in the series. Particularly since the writing is so amazing.
I do believe that I’ve already mentioned this author is my favourite. Her writing just speaks to me on a level that many others don’t. She’s like a super kinky version of Terry Pratchett, always pushing boundaries but usually making me giggle along the way. Condemned was one of two books written she published via Stormy Nights, which meant a toning down of the darker elements she usually includes. It’s a RH kink-fest and one of the few stand alone books where the males have distinct characteristics and there is also a well developed plot. Not only did she includes the prerequisite cute and quirky bot in this story (a mouse), but her heroine is half Mauleon, a genetically-engineered leonine type species. And that right there is a huge pointer to Ms Silverwoods off-beat humour right there – the cat relying on and caring for the mouse. Oh and did I mention there are winged horses that “hop-fly”?
I think this is one of the best debut novels I have ever read. It’s very dark and is part of the as yet unfinished Omega’s Destruction series. Ms Dresden really does put her heroine, Quinn, through the wringer. I’m surprised she can still function after all that she has endured! Eva’s writing has a somewhat poetic feel to it, things are often suggested or implied rather than always being blatantly and very obviously told/shown. It provides a breath of fresh air and makes this very much a must-read series. The book does end on a cliff-hanger and whilst book 2 is available (and a highly recommended read too), the final book of the series is currently still in production.
Blending Omegaverse with a slightly dystopian feeling organised crime/mafia romance gave this book a VERY unique feel. It took me by surprise with how dark it got, things were trotting along quite nicely and then BAM! it veered straight into darksville. This book is certainly not all sweetness and light, although the acts are not perpetrated by the hero. He is a more than a bit of an alpha-hole at first, but he does treat her with respect and I found myself caring deeply for both December and Nikolai.
This is the very last book I’m highlighting from 2019 but it is by no means in last place in any other respect. I started of hating the hero of this book, but by the end was totally besotted by him. The author wrote a very convincing story that definitely had it’s own feel and carved it’s own spot within the omegaverse world. It’s the first book in an interconnected series of stand alones and I’m looking forward to Ms Black releasing more of them.
An action-packed finale to the trilogy ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ 1/2
Sin & Salvation is the third book of the Demigods of San Francisco series. To fully appreciate, understand and enjoy this I really would recommend reading the previous two books, Sin & Chocolateand Sin & Magic. In the books we meet Alexis, her two wards Daisy and Mordecai, the Demi-god Kieran, his posse of bad-ass magic uses (called The Six) and Kieran’s evil ol’ dad, Valens. This, like both previous books, had it’s own complete adventure along with an overarching plot that finally comes to fruition, sort of.
This is one jam-packed story, with a fast flowing plot, lots of action and adventure, myriad plot twists, jaw-dropping reveals and some seriously sexy times squeezed into the mix. To be honest there is so much story that I already feel as though it needs a re-read as I’m sure I missed some important stuff.
That wasn’t my idea of a fun lover’s tryst. Kids could really water down the romance of a situation.
I texted back:Are you sure about the kids? They have chores to do.
They did now, at any rate.
Alexis, Sin & Salvation
Oh and I’ve not even mentioned the banter yet. The banter between the members of The Six, between Daisy and Mordecai and between Bria and, well, just about everyone. I’m pretty sure that wasn’t all of it either!
We get to see Alexis trying to learn how to use and control her powers before Valens realises just how close to home his biggest enemies lie. We also learn more about the six and their magical abilities, along with Daisy and Mordecai coming into their own. In fact I would love this pair, and the six, to have their own books sometime in the future.
Full of feels, the story really touched my emotions, as well as making me giggle. It held my attention through out and wrapped up all the loose ends, whilst dropping a few new threads to lure us into future books. However it’s the softest of cliff-hangers, and rather more of a segue into another adventure. One that I will only be too happy to journey along with.
“Come with me.” I wouldn’t have a choice. This train was smashing into the station.