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Devils and Details by Devon Monk

On our second visit to Ordinary, Oregon, things heat up as the god powers are lost, people turn up dead, new players come to town, and more secrets are revealed.

Title: Devils and Details
Author: Devon Monk
Series: Ordinary Magic, Book 02
Publish Date: August 31st, 2016, by Odd House Press
Genre: Urban fantasy
Cover: Lou Harper, Cover Affairs
Narrator: Khristine Hvam
Source: Purchased

Publisher’s DescriptionCaught between the devil and the deep blue sea…

Police Chief Delaney Reed is good at keeping secrets for the beach town of Ordinary Oregon–just ask the vacationing gods or supernatural creatures who live there.

But with the first annual Cake and Skate fundraiser coming up, the only secret Delaney really wants to know is how to stop the unseasonable rain storms. When all the god powers are stolen, a vampire is murdered, and her childhood crush turns out to be keeping deadly secrets of his own, rainy days are the least of her worries.

Hunting a murderer, outsmarting a know-it-all god, and uncovering an ancient vampire’s terrifying past isn’t how she planned to spend her summer. But then again, neither is falling back in love with the one man she should never trust.

Possible spoilers beyond this point.


Invested Ivana says…

As with the first book in this series, there were a couple of story points I didn’t care much for, but overall, I really enjoyed this visit to Ordinary, Oregon.

I mention in my review for Death and Relaxation that something happens at the end that I feel was too little reward for the sacrifice. Unfortunately, part of the plot of Devils and Details is built on this event, so I was constantly thinking about that while I was listening. There is also the fact that neither Delaney nor her sisters, who are supposed to be the experts at Ordinary guardianship,  recognize that a blatant violation of the agreement made between the gods and Ordinary would cause a problem. That bothered me, especially since the rule was made very clear to the reader. That aspect felt too forced in order to make the rest of the story work.

The last bit I didn’t care for was the introduction of a shadowy para-government agency. There is so much going on in Ordinary already that it didn’t feel necessary or fully developed. But perhaps more will come of that in future books.

Despite those story elements, the characters and quirks of Ordinary are fun and compelling, as is the mystery. Bertie and her manipulations, Crow and his cockiness, Odin and his stubbornness, Death and his wacky outfits, Old Rosi, and the werewolves are all wonderful characters that I love visiting. I care about these characters and the town, and that, for me, is what makes for a good story.

Other reviews in this series…

Other recommendations…

…you might try the Scarlet Bernard series by Melissa F. Olson, the Madison Fox series by Rebecca Chastain, or the Nicki Styx series by Terri Garey.

Ain’t She a Peach by Molly Harper

There’s a new Sheriff in town.  He “thinks” he’s got everything under control until he meets the local coroner.  She’s purple haired goth chick who has her county business in the family funeral home slash bait shop.  She’s quick witted, smart and a handful.

I received an ARC or review copy of this book from the author/publisher. All opinions are my own.

Title:  Ain’t She A Peach
Author: Molly Harper
Series:  Southern Eclectic #4
Publish Date: June 12, 2018
Genre:  Contemporary Romance
Narrator:  Amanda Ronconi
Source: Audible.com

Publisher’s Description: An Atlanta ex-cop comes to sleepy Lake Sackett, Georgia, seeking peace and quiet—but he hasn’t bargained on falling for Frankie, the cutest coroner he’s ever met.

Frankie McCready talks to dead people. Not like a ghost whisperer or anything—but it seems rude to embalm them and not at least say hello.

Fortunately, at the McCready Family Funeral Home & Bait Shop, Frankie’s eccentricities fit right in. Lake Sackett’s embalmer and county coroner, Frankie’s goth styling and passion for nerd culture mean she’s not your typical Southern girl, but the McCreadys are hardly your typical Southern family. Led by Great-Aunt Tootie, the gambling, boozing, dog-collecting matriarch of the family, everyone looks out for one another—which usually means getting up in everyone else’s business.

Maybe that’s why Frankie is so fascinated by new sheriff Eric Linden…a recent transplant from Atlanta, he sees a homicide in every hunting accident or boat crash, which seems a little paranoid for this sleepy tourist town. What’s he so worried about? And what kind of cop can get a job with the Atlanta PD but can’t stand to look at a dead body?

Frankie has other questions that need answering first—namely, who’s behind the recent break-in attempts at the funeral home, and how can she stop them? This one really does seem like a job for the sheriff—and as Frankie and Eric do their best Scooby-Doo impressions to catch their man, they get closer to spilling some secrets they thought were buried forever.

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


Nervous Nellie says…

This is an incredibly fun story.  Eric is coming from the big city and sees murder in every death that happens in the small town.  He is running from a past that is haunting him and is the reason he had to come to the slower small town.  Frankie is the county medical examiner and she has quirks.  I think she was a quirky and fun character to read.

The McCready family is a hoot.  There are eccentric relatives and each one of them have qualities about them that make them individuals and incredibly likeable.  Just hearing the fact that they all are associated with the funeral home that also serves as a bait shop makes me laugh.  Only in a small town.  I like Molly Harper’s writing because of her humor and comedic influence.  Each character is individual and separate which makes all of them feel like a family to me for the short time I’m in their world.

There is a little sex, a wanna be burglar and a fun read.  I listened to this book out of series order, but the story is a standalone and though there may be back stories I missed, I could follow along just fine.  There is no cliff hanger and there is a HEA.  I just love Molly Harper and her imagination.  5 stars all the way.

Other recommendations…

…you might try

How to Date Your Dragon by Molly Harper

I received an ARC or review copy of this book from the author/publisher. All opinions are my own.

 

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Fused in Fire by K.F. Breene

Some things are worth fighting for, and freedom is one of them. Reagan is Lucifer’s daughter, and she needs to hide from those who want to use her to their advantage. But how can she do that while meeting them on their own turf?

I received an ARC or review copy of this book from the author/publisher. All opinions are my own.

Title: Fused in Fire
Author: K.F. Breene
Series: Fire and Ice Trilogy #3
Publish Date: October 17, 2017
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Narrator: Nicole Poole
Source: Audible.com

Publisher’s Description: I thought the threat from Seattle was finished. That we showed up in time and took care of business.

I hate being wrong. It really ruins my day.

When Roger, the alpha of the North American pack, shows up at my door with the news that a demon has made it to the Underworld with knowledge of me, some hard decisions have to be made.

Do I stay above ground, with all my magical friends, and wait for the battle to come to me? Or do I seek the demon out, and pluck the threat out by the root?

I don’t want my friends to die on my behalf. I could never live with myself. But if I venture into the Underworld, it’ll be the most perilous journey of my life.

This time, it isn’t just my life hanging in the balance, it is my eternity.

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


Nervous Nellie says…

“Just FYI, in case you need a barometer reading on the day’s suckery, it is high. Very high. There is a shitstorm warning in effect.”

This story does have a small mention of sex, but nothing graphic. Reagan is very independent, and she tends to swear a lot. There are parts where demons and other evil creatures meet the business end of Reagan’s sword. This is the conclusion of the trilogy, and it would be smart to read books 1 and 2 prior to this book. Also, there is a satisfying ending, and maybe Reagan and Darius could be brought back for more adventures, but it’s the end for now.

First off, I love Reagan. She is so brassy and snarky that she makes me grin every time she throws out a one-liner. Even when she is surrounded by bad guys, she has something to say that is not necessarily something someone would say when that someone’s life is being threatened. She has bravado, but why shouldn’t she since she’s the daughter of Lucifer. She’s got two powers fighting for dominance: one ice, one fire. She has to try to learn how to wield them or there will be serious trouble.

Darius is a wealthy, elder vampire who does not want a woman in his life. He needs Reagan as leverage, and she is useful with her power. His sire, Vlad, also wants to succeed in his quest to be most powerful, but he’s got a different path. As the trilogy moves along, Darius starts feeling emotional about Reagan. She makes him feel his humanity again. Darius wants Regan for his own and needs to convince her that he’s trustworthy and has her best interest in mind. It’s a feeling that many older vampires want back as they age and lose everything that they were when they were alive.

This story is action-packed, full of great movie quotes, and the daughter of the devil. Reagan has to stop the information that she exists before it reaches her father. She and Darius travel through hell, and Reagan even sees her father from a distance. It’s a fantastic adventure, and Reagan is one kick-ass bounty hunter with powers to boot. Also, if you love great showdowns, the end of this book is one that was worth the price of admission.

Our reviews from in the series…

I received an ARC or review copy of this book from the author/publisher. All opinions are my own.

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Raised in Fire by K.F. Breene

Got a steady job.  Got a housekeeper, a fallen angel for a dad, an understanding boss, and even a righteous sword.  Who needs more?  Reagen Sommerset, that’s who.  Less talk and a lot more action is what she’s all about.

Title:  Raised in Fire
Author: K.F. Breene
Series: Fire and Ice Triolgy #2
Publish Date: September 22, 2017
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Narrator: Nicole Poole
Source: Purchased from Audible

Publisher’s DescriptionIt is a common truth in my life that when it rains, it pours.

The killings that once plagued New Orleans are cropping up again in Seattle. The local office is stumped. I’m called out to lend a fresh set of eyes, and my unique magical touch.

It’s only when I get there that I realize the Seattle office isn’t stumped at all.

They’re being silenced by the Mages’ Guild, a corrupt magical institution that doesn’t want word to get out of what is plaguing the city. Worse, news of my magic might’ve slipped down to the underworld, hitting the ears of some extremely powerful demons.

What I thought was a routine murder investigation turns into a fight for my life. With the help of Darius, my stalker elder vampire, and my dual-mage side kicks, I somehow have to dodge the Guild in order to stop one of the most powerful demons I’ve ever encountered. If I don’t? It’ll escape back down below with proof of what I really am.

My life hangs in the balance, and this time, I can’t see a way out.

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


Nervous Nellie says…

This book rocked! This is #2 in the 3 book run of Fire and Ice series.  There is swearing.  There is death.  There are monsters.  There is tricks and conspiracies.  All those things, but mostly just the last 4 will give you a hint there are vampires as well.  There isn’t a cliffhanger, but a lead in to the next book.  There is some graphic stuff but not horror graphic.

 

 

I can’t say enough good about this series so far except I will be sad when I get through the last book.  Reagan is someone I’d like to hang with and see what trouble she land in next.  Her dad is Lucifer.  She’s supposed to reign in hell.  She doesn’t want to.  She’s great at the bounty hunter job she has in the brink and she doesn’t want to be noticed by the demons bent on bringing her into her daddy’s inner circle.  Well, they could also use her to their own ends too.  I mean, they are demons, you know.

And then there is the vampire stalker.  Oh, he doesn’t think he’s a stalker.  For some reason, even unknown to the elder vampire himself, he is pulled to Reagan like a magnet.  Darius doesn’t like the feelings she’s stirring up in him.  He’s a vampire for goodness sake.  He’s not supposed to have feelings, but Reagan is pulling him back to his humanity.  It’s really a fun journey.  Reagan and Darius work so well together, it would be a shame to split them.

This story is exactly as the description claims and it was an adventure full of discovery and death.

Other recommendations…

…you might try  Faith Hunter’s Jane Yellowrock, Brad Magnarella’s Prof Croft series, and Jenn Stark’s amazing Immortal Vegas series…

 

How to Date Your Dragon by Molly Harper

Research scientist Jillian Ramsey is very good at research but has never been to the field.  Her first assignment could very well be her last assignment if she doesn’t follow the rules and avoid a supernatural killer.

Title: How to Date Your Dragon
Author:  Molly Harper
Series: Mystic Bayou #1
Publish Date: January 23, 2018
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Narrated by: Amanda Ronconi, Jonathan Davis 
Source: Purchased by reviewer
Publisher’s Description:  Anthropologist Jillian Ramsay’s career has taken a turn south.

Concerned that technology is about to chase mythological creatures out into the open (how long can Sasquatch stay hidden from Google maps?), the League for Interspecies Cooperation is sending Jillian to Louisiana on a fact-finding mission. While the League hopes to hold on to secrecy for a little bit longer, they’re preparing for the worst in terms of human reactions. They need a plan, so they look to Mystic Bayou, a tiny town hidden in the swamp where humans and supernatural residents have been living in harmony for generations. Mermaids and gator shifters swim in the bayou. Spirit bottles light the front porches after twilight. Dragons light the fires under crayfish pots.

Jillian’s first assignment for the League could be her last. Mystic Bayou is wary of outsiders, and she has difficulty getting locals to talk to her. And she can’t get the gruff town sheriff, Bael Boone, off of her back or out of her mind. Bael is the finest male specimen she’s seen in a long time, even though he might not be human. Soon their flirtation is hotter than a dragon’s breath, which Bael just might turn out to be….


Nervous Nellie’s nervousness necessitates knowledge of the novel. In some cases…spoilers. *BEWARE*


Nervous Nellie says…

This is a typical romance.  Not graphic sex, but there is a pretty steamy scene.  A little swearing.  A tiny little graphic description of a kill scene and lots and lots of fun people.

I had such a good time with this book.  It’s a good book to relax to and the narrators paint the picture that is Mystic Bayou.  Jillian is a supernatural scientist that is creating a “How To” research paper on how Mystic Bayou makes their town work with such a diversified bunch of creatures.  She’s a hard worker and the chemistry between Bael and Jillian start churning right off.  Mostly a dislike/avoid kind of chemistry.  Bael is the Sheriff and not especially inclined to like Jillian poking around, talking to folks.

Jillian is welcomed by the townsfolk and after she proves she’s of no harm to them, they welcome her with open arms.  They give interviews and she takes copious amounts of notes.  Then the murders start.  Blatant murders.  The first murders in Mystic Bayou for years and years.  On top of babysitting Jillian, Bael has to solve these homicides.  Jillian with her natural curiousity keeps digging.  Then she discovers the towns secret.  A secret that Bael wanted to keep from her.  A secret worth killing for.

Slowly, Bael lets his guard down and realizes his reaction to Jillian is not dislike/avoid it’s protective/territorial.  His dragon is claiming Jillian and Jillian doesn’t even know it.

Things happen.  Feelings grow. Danger encroaches.  Who is behind all of this conspiracy? Why? Will Bael solve the mystery before something befalls Jillian?  He can’t allow that to happen so he needs to figure it out.

This story starts out fluffy and is fluffy for quite a large part of the book.  It’s really not until the last half or so that the action and drama of a mystery start to unfold.

I loved the dual narration.  That was the first time I’ve ever listened to a book that was narrated by both protagonists by every other chapter.  It was fun!

Other recommendations…

…you might try

 

 

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