Monday, July 21, 2014

Review: Complicated Creatures by Alexi Lawless

Book: Complicated Creatures (Part 1)
By: Alexi Lawless
Published: April 24, 2014
Published by: VIVRANT Press Publications

Description: What happens when curiosity becomes obsession? And when that obsession leads to an unstoppable journey you could never have imagined?

Luck is Jack Roman's middle name— and Chicago is his Empire. He lives to work, loves to play, and makes no commitments. But when the mysterious S. Wyatt moves into the adjoining penthouse, he's immediately drawn to her, a striking, elusive woman who transitions seamlessly from wood-paneled board rooms to high-stakes, high-risk rescue operations in the most dangerous parts of the world.

Intrigued by her self-possession, aroused by her incredible passion, and disarmed by a vulnerability she cannot hide, Jack pursues her into the nexus of her dangerous present and her enigmatic past. An entire world is revealed to Jack, where living for pleasure becomes fighting for survival. And the only woman he wants may be the one he cannot have...

COMPLICATED CREATURES is a mesmerizing, labyrinthine romantic suspense that will leave you wondering: Do you really want to know everything about the one you love?

My Thoughts: Complicated Creatures is a good story full of new beginnings, uncertainty, and hope.

Told in dual POV, CC follows Sam and Jack, two completely different people who wind up meeting and tearing each other’s worlds apart. Sam is a soldier/hero who constantly puts herself in danger to protect her clients. She’s totally badass, and keeps her feelings to herself. Jack, on the other hand, is a wealthy ladies man who is apparently no match for Sam’s allure, and is soon swept up into her life, and begging her to let him in.

I really liked this book. I loved seeing Sam and Jack interact, and loved seeing the passion they could have when they were together. I couldn’t get enough of the scenes of them together. Additionally, this book had tons of fight/combat scenes, which were awesome, and gave this book more of an action feel than just regular romance.

There’s a lot of back/side story in this book, and though interesting, it could sometimes take away from the plot. I just didn’t get enough Sam and Jack, and it left the book feeling as if it was missing something. Furthermore; this book is what I like to call a build up book. Everything is set up nice and neat, and slowly builds and builds and builds, but then as soon as you’re anticipating what will happen, it ends. Nothing is really resolved. Perhaps that’s the reason for the next book in this series, but I would have still liked a bit of resolution somewhere.  Hopefully in the next book I’ll be sated.

I give this one 3.5 stars. It was a great start, and I thoroughly enjoyed it, but it was definitely missing that certain something that I just needed. I would recommend this to those who like romances that include badass women who tame their male counterparts and can beat the crap out of anyone she comes up against. 
This month, I was part of the Complicated Creatures Blog Tour. In celebration of the blog tour:

  • Complicated Creatures Part Two is due out in September. If people sign up to be part of the LAWLESS Ones here, they will receive Complicated Creatures 1.5, a novella, FREE.

  • For the stalkery type (like me) You can find Alexi here

Monday, May 26, 2014

Audio Review: Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Book: Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin #1)
By: Robin LaFevers
Published: April 3, 2012
Published by: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Description: Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?

My Thoughts: Grave Mercy is a Story about Ismae, a girl who has had a rough time in life because she;s seen as the daughter of death since her mother tried to poison her from her belly before she was born, and yet she was still born. Everyone is afraid of her, and men beat her. Then, on her dreaded wedding day, she's taken to a covenant of St. Mortain where she's trained to be an assassin.

She's a great assassin, until her assignment becomes a bit more difficult and interesting. She must deal with lies and deceit and is unable to determine how to handle it. Meanwhile, her horrible feelings toward men are slowly going away.

I enjoyed reading it, though I must say Ismae seems a bit too trusting. Often, it was extra obvious who the villain was in a particular situation, and yet, she didn't seem to see it, or overlooked it. It was ridiculous. Still, it was a pretty great read, once I got past being annoyed at how dense Ismae was at times. For that reason, I give this one 3 stars. it was great, but some of the characters were just a little too unbelievable.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Review: Phoenix Rising by Pip Ballantine, Tee Morris, and Phillippa Ballintine

Book: Phoenix Rising (Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences #1) 
By: Pip Ballantine, Tee Morris, and Phillippa Ballintine
Published: April 26, 2011
Published by: HarperCollins Publishers

Description:  Evil is most assuredly afoot—and Britain’s fate rests in the hands of an alluring renegade . . . and a librarian.

These are dark days indeed in Victoria’s England. Londoners are vanishing, then reappearing, washing up as corpses on the banks of the Thames, drained of blood and bone. Yet the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences—the Crown’s clandestine organization whose bailiwick is the strange and unsettling—will not allow its agents to investigate. Fearless and exceedingly lovely Eliza D. Braun, however, with her bulletproof corset and a disturbing fondness for dynamite, refuses to let the matter rest . . . and she’s prepared to drag her timorous new partner, Wellington Books, along with her into the perilous fray.

For a malevolent brotherhood is operating in the deepening London shadows, intent upon the enslavement of all Britons. And Books and Braun—he with his encyclopedic brain and she with her remarkable devices—must get to the twisted roots of a most nefarious plot . . . or see England fall to the Phoenix!

My Thoughts: I love steampunk. More than that, I love steampunk that boasts an eccentric female main character who barely follows societal rules for women, choosing instead to crack cases, kick asses, and take names. Phoenix Rising is one such book.

As the description states, we follow Eliza Braun and Wellington Books. Near the beginning of the book, the two are at each other’s throats. Eliza was a field agent, who got too…explosive in the field and was reassigned. Wellington “Welly” (as Eliza so lovingly calls him) happily runs the archives until Eliza comes down and ruins a couple things.

As you would expect, these two eventually overcome their differences (as much as they can) and band together to investigate a series of peculiar occurrences (pun intended) that were set aside as unsolvable. What results is a story full of danger and undercover intrigue, era appropriate sexual innuendo, and plenty high speed carriage chases to suitably meet your steampunk needs.

I really liked this, though I’ll admit, it got off to a pretty slow start. I usually hope to get sucked into a story within the first chapter, and unfortunately, I just wasn’t with this one. That being said, I held out, hoping it would get better, and near the middle of the book, it did.

I give this book 3.5 stars. I really was disappointed in the way it began, and I wished I could have gotten more out of it still, it picked up a bit near the middle and I enjoyed it. I still wish I would have gotten a bit more out of it, which is why I’m not giving it more stars. I’m hoping I’ll feel better about the next one in the series. I’m about to start it shortly.

I would recommend this story to those interested in steampunk books with a hint of romance, and tons of sexual innuendo, with lots of investigation and mystery. I can see this becoming a good series.