Howling For You by Chloe Neill

How do you choose family duty or a life that would make you happy? Why do those things never coincide? Maybe Fallon can make it all work.

Title:  Howling For You
Author: Chloe Neill
Series: Chicagoland Vampires #8.5
Publish Date: July 7, 2014
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Source: reviewer purchased

Publisher’s Description:  Jeff Christopher is a shapeshifter and ally of Chicago’s Cadogan House of vampires—he’s also a tech whiz and mostly-legal hacker. And the only protective shields he’s never been able to find a way around are those of the powerful Keene Family.

For a long time, Jeff has only had eyes for the beautiful Fallon Keene. Unfortunately, she is the only sister of the lethal North American Central Pack Apex Gabriel Keene. The intricate balances of power and politics make it all but impossible for Fallon to trust her feelings.

But fate takes a hand when the Pack’s totem is stolen—threatening the Keene family’s rule—and Fallon enlists Jeff’s help to retrieve it before the Pack is thrown into chaos. Can she and Jeff find the totem, and restore order, before it’s too late? And will Jeff finally be able to prove himself to the only person he truly loves?

Nervous Nellie’s nervousness necessitates knowledge of the novel. In other words… SPOILERS. *BEWARE*


Nervous Nellie says…

I was in the middle of Wild Hunger by Chloe Neill.  It’s the story where Merit and Ethan’s daughter is the focal point, and she’s taking her own steps into her mom and dad’s world. I took a break from that book and went back to the world of Chicagoland Vampires to catch up with the characters.

This story is about the North American Central Pack leader’s sister, Fallon. She’s in love with Jeff but is expected to make an alliance with another pack by marriage. The story takes us through the journey that Fallon has to follow in order to find happiness. It’s a quick novella with a conspiracy, love, and discovery. 

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Nell’s Gossip and Book Hunt 9/2/18

Welcome to my Sunday book hunt and author gossip.  Keep coming back for updates on book releases and news from favorite authors.

This awesome new book released August 29, 2018, and I’m deep into it already.  I love this series.

Title:  Demon Forsaken
Author: Jenn Stark
Series: Demon Enforcers #2
Released: August 29, 2018

Description:  A Sin so great it cannot stand…

It’s not easy being the wittiest, sexiest, most devilishly handsome member of his elite team of Demon Enforcers, but Finn of the Syx has worked it his entire existence. The existence he can remember, anyway. While his fellow demons can recall their lives as Fallen angels–and the sins that got them condemned–Finn’s memory is a blank slate.

Which means his Sin was so horrible, not even the mind of a demon can handle it. Outstanding.

Now Finn is given his last chance for redemption: twenty-four hours to find an encrypted list of mortals marked for death. Unfortunately, the only person who can help him is Dana Griffin–the gritty, passionate, fiercely independent security expert who’s far more than she thinks she is, and definitely more than Finn deserves. Not to mention she’s being hunted by the worst of his kind.

Finn knows Dana is the key to his future and his past, but she’ll also be a dead woman if he can’t remember how to save them both before the clock strikes midnight on Christmas Eve. No pressure, though.

The life you’ve lost is all that can save you when you’re a Demon Forsaken.

Yeah, I’m in the middle of this one too.  There are so many blockbusters this fall!

Title: Storm of the Gods
Author: Amy Braun
Series: Arios Brothers #1
Released: August 28, 2018

Description:  Thirty years ago, the gods of Greek legend returned to the world. Their return restored their powers, which had been spent in a cataclysmic battle with the Titans. With the ancient deities imprisoned in Tartarus, the Olympians now reside in Néo Vasíleio, formerly known as California.

Twenty-four-year-old Derek Aerios is a war scion, a descendant of Ares, the God of War. He and his brother, eighteen-year-old Liam, capture mythological creatures and rogue scions as part of Ares’s elite military force. As he struggles to cope with his violent powers and the scars of a traumatic childhood, Derek tries to keep the two vows he has made: protect his brother, and never kill a human again.

But when Ares forces him to hunt and kill four rogue scions under Athena’s control—by threatening Liam’s life—Derek chooses to go after the scions in order to save his brother and keep his promise to himself.

Yet the closer Derek gets to the scions, the more he realizes that his orders are part of a deeper conspiracy that put him at odds with his mission and his conscience. Athena may not be the enemy, a traitor could be in their midst, and the Titans could be closer to freedom than ever before. 

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Gathering Darkness by Morgan Rhodes

Blood keeps spilling as the third book takes it up a notch and ushers in a whole new line of secrets, romances, and deadly twists.

Title: Gathering Darkness
Author: Morgan Rhodes
Series: Falling Darkness, Book 3
Publish Date: December 9th, 2014 by Razorbill
Genre: YA High Fantasy
Source: Purchased

Publisher’s DescriptionWar brought them together. Love will tear them apart.

Alliances form across Mytica and beyond as royals and rebels alike race to hunt down the Kindred—the four elemental crystals that give their owners god-like power. The stakes have never been higher for Magnus and Cleo, who are brought together by a life or death decision that will lock their fates and change the course of the kingdom forever.

THE REBELS forge ahead. Princess Cleo slays with sweetness—and a secret that might control Lucia’s magic—as she and vengeful Jonas lead the hunt for the all-powerful Kindred.

THE KRAESHIANS join the fray. Ashur and Amara, the royal siblings from the vast kingdom across the Silver Sea, prove to be just as ruthless as they are charming as they manipulate their way to victory.

THE WATCHERS follow Melenia out of the Sanctuary. They ally, in the flesh, with King Gaius, who vows to use Lucia’s powers to unveil the Kindred.

And which side will Prince Magnus choose, now that everyone he’s been betrayed by everyone he’s ever loved?

Possible spoilers beyond this point.


Kat Mandu says…

Magnus has been betrayed by his father, who harbors secrets about his true lineage and also had his mother killed, and by his sister, who knows the truth about his feelings and now feels nothing but repulsion from him despite their old bonds.

Cleo has a goal in mind—befriend Lucia, gain power over her and her magical abilities, and win back Auranos. And for the most part, it works until Lucia discovers the truth and goes berserk.

Jonas, with Cleo’s help and a shady new friend, is trying to find the kindred before anyone else and save his friends in the meantime. But trusting the wrong people is only going to get him in big trouble.

Lucia is awake, alive, and ready to get control over her elementia. But when the boy she loves is killed by all the machinations of the people she loves, she’s ready to go dark side.

So all these characters have their own agendas right now, and it makes for a very interesting mix. This is the first book in the series that really gripped me to my core so that when I was working away from the book, I found I really wanted to get back to it, wanted to read more to find out what would happen. I almost thought it was a five-star book.

But the romance just didn’t do it for me. At this point, Magnus seems to be throwing his love around anywhere the wind blows. He still cares for Lucia, though in honesty, he’s almost over her. He decides to sleep with Amara, who turns out to be his enemy. And then at the end, he and Cleo kiss at random. Like, what the hell? Plus, Lucia gets her own romance in Alexius, sleeping with a guy she barely knows and will probably be the end of her (which he is, who could have guessed?). And Nic, who wants Cleo and Ashur? Ashur, who kisses him, confuses him, and suddenly he’s in love with him?

Man, half of it just seemed… forced or there just to be a simple plot. I know for certain that the other half of it was there for plot twists. Like Magnus sleeping with Amara. That much I knew was a mind game. But the rest? Predictable and sometimes unnecessary. It distracted me from the main plots of the book.

But it still gets a four from me anyway!

Series list and reviews…

Some links will become active as future reviews are published.

Other recommendations…

Leigh Bardugo’s Grishaverse; Renee Adieh’s The Wrath and the Dawn; Jodi Meadows’s The Orphan Queen series.

Nell’s Gossip and Book Hunt 8/19/18

Welcome to my Sunday book hunt and author gossip. Keep coming back for updates on book releases and news from favorite authors.

Back with new releases again… they keep writin’ them, we keep readin’ them!

Kris Michaels just released Asp (see August 15 post – I thought the book was fab), and here she is working double time getting another story out! Check out the newest release.

Title:  A Backwater Blessing
Author:  Kris Michaels
Series: The Kings of Guardian and Hearts Desire crossover
Released:  August 9, 2018

Description:  When Cole, Mr. FBI, and Logan, local cop and reigning Ice Princess, hook up to solve a case of Mississippi corruption at the highest judicial levels, sparks fly. Their attraction is hotter than the sultry southern sun. She wants to hate him—but she can’t. And Cole would never commit career suicide by staying in a backwater Mississippi town… not for any woman… especially not for Isabella Logan Church.

***ALERT:  I asked the author for position in the line up of The Kings of Guardian books and here’s what she said…

“This story takes place while Joseph’s book is happening. Davis then makes an appearance in Jasmine’s book and in A Heart’s Desire. So I really can’t make it a .5. It is just Cole’s backstory.” ~Kris Michaels

Another Kris Michaels announcement–she’s releasing another book on October 31. It’s a cool anthology of the digital sort. There are nine authors who are going to submit different stories in the SEALs of Paradise series. The series will be released September – October 2018. Check them out when you can.

Title:  Hot SEAL, Single Malt  
AuthorKris Michaels
Series:  SEALs of Paradise
To Be Released: October 31, 2018

Description:  A sense of duty drove Gunner Kincade’s twenty years of service as a Navy SEAL and after his Pops had a stroke, that same sense of duty drove him back to Half Moon Bay to help his old man run his bar, The Wayward Walrus. He meant to surprise Pops with the news he’d retired and was home to stay. It didn’t exactly work to plan. Pops had hired a tiny fireball by the name of A.J. Erickson. Before she’d even learned his name, A.J. managed to sic the local police on him, drown him in dirty mop water and crush his privates, and to his chagrin, she wasn’t going anywhere. Pops had sold her twenty percent of his bar.

After she healed enough to leave the east Texas hospital and testify against her ex-boyfriend, A.J. packed up and drove west. Answering Silas Kincaide’s help wanted ad seemed an answer to a prayer. The old gentleman needed her skills and it didn’t hurt they got along like a house-a-fire. She settled in and made Half Moon Bay and the Walrus her home. After the physical abuse she’d suffered in Texas, she’d honed her ninja skills and though tiny, she stood her ground and defended the Walrus from a trespassing, six-foot-four, muscle-bound, hulk. When Silas introduced the hunched over male, the one cradling his balls, as his son, Gunner, she about died from mortification. Things went downhill from there.

What’s an ex-SEAL to do when a diminutive fireball worms her way past all the bruises she’s inflicted and into his unwilling heart?

Next in line is a series that I haven’t started yet (bows head in shame). It looks so very good and I love Bec McMaster‘s writing. It’s like I need to have a full-time job just reading books!  Anyway, check it out!

Title:  To Catch a Rogue
Author: Bec McMaster
Series: London Steampunk: The Blueblood Conspiracy #4
To be released:  October 30, 2018

Description:  An impossible heist. A thief and a rogue. But will she steal his heart, instead?

The Company of Rogues finally knows the identity of the mastermind behind a plot against the queen—but their enemy is still one step ahead of them. When he kidnaps one of theirs, the Rogues plan a daring rescue mission that will lead them into the heart of the bloodthirsty Crimson Court.

It’s a job for a master thief, and there’s nothing Charlie Todd likes more than a challenge. To pull off the impossible, Charlie needs a crew, including the only thief who’s ever been able to outfox him.

He broke her heart. But now she must risk it all to save his life…

Lark’s spent years trying to forget her past, but the one thing she can’t ignore is the way a single smile from Charlie still sets her heart on fire. When he proposes they work together again, it feels just like old times, but she has one rule: this is strictly business.

It’s Charlie’s last chance to prove he can be trusted with her heart. But Lark’s keeping a deadly secret. And as passions are stirred and the stakes mount, it might be the kind of secret that could destroy them all…

Ocean’s 11 meets Dracula, in this sexy paranormal heist by USA Today Bestselling Author, Bec McMaster. If you like sexy paranormal romances, steampunk shenanigans, and plenty of action-adventure (vampires, dirigible flights, and steamy rooftop chases), then dive into this thrilling heist with Charlie and Lark.

You could say I’ve been catching up on my series books as of late. I really am excited about that because it’s like a family reunion. The next series update is from Teresa Gabelman and her The Protectors series.  The one thing I loved about this book is that there is trouble in paradise for one of the vampire couples. You know how you read along and are supposed to believe that each mated pair will be happy with one another for eternity? You know and I know how unrealistic that is. I mean every couple has their spats. This story showcases a new and freshly minted couple AND it does show a fissure in a couple that is not the prime focus of the book. It makes it more real life, in my opinion anyway. And more to that is that Steve learns his superpower and the wedding goes on. Oh, and I had to go back and read Sloan again. Couldn’t resist.

Title:  Ronan
Author: Teresa Gabelman
Series: The Protectors #12
Released:  July 30, 2018

Description:  Most think that newest VC Warrior, Ronan McDonald, is just a laid-back cowboy. What they don’t see is the inner turmoil that only his small ranch and horses can tame. At least that was the way it had been until a witch with a beauty none could deny walked into his life.

Running has been Kira Grail’s life for as long as she can remember. It isn’t until she meets a VC Warrior that she realizes she is growing weary, but the forces chasing her will never bend.

Ronan doesn’t believe in witches or curses. What he does believe is that only he can keep Kira safe. Together they fight to bring the once powerful warlock, Orjyll, to his knees releasing the women of the Dragonfly Coven. During their perilous journey, Kira vows to keep her distance, but the vampire cowboy has other plans.

The last update I have today is the new Chloe Neill series. Heirs of Chicagoland #1 starts out with Merit and Ethan’s little girl all grown up. It’s so weird. Not in a bad way at all. It’s just that I’m welcoming a new generation to take my favorite vampires places. It’s just weird.

I’m halfway through the book, but I had to stop to go back and read Howling for You and Slaying It (my reviews will be upcoming). It makes me feel old to go back to when Keene was a tiny baby and Elisa was not born yet. What makes me feel even more strange is that their parents haven’t aged a bit. I’m not sure I’m cut out for this vampire life. Anyway, I’ll be reviewing it all very soon, so if you are interested, keep a weather eye out.

Title:  Wild Hunger
Author: Chloe Neill
Series:  Heirs of Chicagoland #1
Released:  August 14, 2018

Description:  As the only vampire child ever born, some believed Elisa Sullivan had all the luck. But the magic that helped bring her into the world left her with a dark secret. Shifter Connor Keene, the only son of North American Central Pack Apex Gabriel Keene, is the only one she trusts with it. But she’s a vampire and the daughter of a Master and a Sentinel, and he’s prince of the Pack and its future king.

When the assassination of a diplomat brings old feuds to the fore again, Elisa and Connor must choose between love and family, between honor and obligation, before Chicago disappears forever.

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Asp (Guardian Security Shadow World #2) by Kris Michaels

Guardian Security’s Shadow World reveals Asp. The Shadow World operatives have nothing. No real relationships, no ties. All they have is their job, and their closest friends are other assassins.  How does one drop their guard long enough to let someone else in?

Title: Asp
Author:  Kris Michaels
Series:  Guardian Security Shadow World #2
Publish Date: July 31, 2018
Genre:  Military Romance
Source: reviewers purchase

Publisher’s Description: 
As a Shadow, Asp planned his assassinations with meticulous care. His work required one thing, that the Council direct his kills. The coded target became a “sanctioned hit” and that distinction was vital.

His most recent assignment took him to a remote area of the Andes Mountains in Colombia. He completed his assassination according to plan – more or less – but no amount of careful planning could have prepared him for the dire circumstances he found himself in. As he faded in and out of consciousness due to a life-threatening bullet wound, he knew he might not get home. He’d resigned himself to dying alone, just not this soon.

Lyric Gadson was an unwilling expatriate. She’d trade her grandfather’s farm in the foothills of the Andes for her old life in Jacksonville, Florida in a heartbeat. But, the cost of a return ticket was out of reach, and Lyric found herself maturing from carefree teen to responsible woman on a remote Colombia banana farm. When her beloved grandfather failed to return from his yearly pilgrimage to his wife’s shrine, Lyric thought nothing of packing her kit and hiking into the Andes mountains to find him. She found her grandfather—and an unconscious man near death. Her decision to stay and care for the dying man would usher in the greatest love of her life, but it could also threaten everyone else she held dear.

Nervous Nellie’s nervousness necessitates knowledge of the novel. In other words… SPOILERS. *BEWARE*


Nervous Nellie says…

This is a new series, a spin-off of The Kings of Guardian series. These men (so far) are assassins who take care of the sanctioned kills of super bad people. This story does have some swearing, some sex but no cliffhanger. There are also guns, scary situations and an impossible kind of love that becomes possible.

Kris Michaels’s writing ranks right up there with a lot of great writers–Susan Stoker, Teresa Gabelman, and Tina Folsom are just a few. This story is well thought out and is written so well that it’s very hard to put down. As a matter of fact, the pages practically turn themselves.

Since I’ve never been an assassin or in a situation where I had to hole up in a cave and heal after a gunshot wound, I can’t say if this story is believable or would actually happen like it does in the book. With that said, I believe it. I can’t imagine the hours of research that this author has put into her books, but like I said, they are so well written and action-packed that I felt like I was a mouse hidden in the backpack coming along for the ride.

There is no doubt that this is a 5 star. Every time I finish one of Michaels’s books, I think it can’t get any better, but by the time the next book rolls around and I read it, it gets better.  Cheers to an amazing author.

Our reviews in this series…

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