ARC Review: 1001 DARK NIGHTS BUNDLE THIRTEEN


From New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors Rebecca Zanetti, Shayla Black, Lauren Blakely, Liliana Hart, and introducing Molly E. Lee.
Five Dark Tales. Five Sensual Stories. Five Page Turners.

TRICKED: A Dark Protectors Novella by Rebecca Zanetti
Ronni Alexander had it all before a poison attacked her heart and gave her a death sentence. Now she has an opportunity to live if she mates a vampire. One night of sex and a good bite, and she’d live forever. Jared Reese agrees to help out his new sister in law by saving her friend’s life with a quick tussle in bed. But after one night with Ronni, he wants more.

DIRTY WICKED: A Wicked Lovers Novella by Shayla Black
After being framed for a crime he didn’t commit, Nick Navarro has nothing but revenge on his mind—until a woman from his past returns to beg for his help. Sasha Porter has been hunted by his enemies. Desperate, she offers him anything to keep her young daughter safe, even agreeing to become his mistress. The last thing either of them want are emotional entanglements but as they entrap the ruthless politician who arranged Nick’s downfall, passion sizzles between them.

THE ONLY ONE: A One Love Novella by Lauren Blakely
Let’s say there was this guy. And he gave you the most mind-blowing night of sex in your life. And you never saw him again. Until ten years later. Now, it turns out he’s the ONLY ONE in all of Manhattan whose restaurant is available for my charity’s event. The trouble is, he doesn’t recognize me.
* * * *
This woman I’m working with is so damn alluring. The first time I set eyes on her, I’m captivated and I can’t get her out of my mind. Even if it’s risky to tango with someone I’m working with, she’s a risk I’m willing to take. The trouble is, she won’t give me the time of day. But I’m determined to change that.

SWEET SURRENDER: A MacKenzie Family Novella by Liliana Hart
It’s been twelve years since Liza Carmichael stepped foot in Surrender, but after her great aunt’s death she has no choice but to return and settle her estate. After twenty-five years on the job, Lieutenant Grant Boone finds himself at loose ends now that he’s retired. The only thing Boone knows is that his future plans don’t include Liza Carmichael. She’s bossy, temperamental, and the confections she bakes are sweet enough to tempt a saint. Thank God he’s never pretended to be one.

EDGE OF CHAOS by Molly Lee
Three years into her Meteorology degree, Blake meets professional storm chaser, Dash Lexington, who is as gorgeous as he is daring. Instantly recognizing her passion and skills in analyzing weather data, he makes a spot for her on his tight-knit storm chasing team. Dash and Blake form a fast friendship and she can’t deny the lightning-worthy chemistry she has with Dash.

Every Dark Nights tale is breathtakingly sexy and magically romantic.

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My rating: 5 of 5 stars

One of my favorite things about anthologies is discovering new authors. Nothing hits me in the gut quite like finding someone new who is equally capable of rocking my world. And the 1001 Dark Nights franchise delivers that in spades! Bundle 13 includes: TRICKED by Rebecca Zanetti, DIRTY WICKED by Shayla Black, THE ONLY ONE by Lauren Blakely, SWEET SURRENDER by Liliana Hart, and EDGE OF CHAOS by Molly Lee. See, I’ve already read and reviewed and loved the books from this bundle… except for one. I got to finally read from Mz. Molly and I enjoyed the heck out of that ride. So without further ado, here are my reviews for these five incredible page turners!

TRICKED by Rebecca Zanetti - 4 stars
WOW!! What a delightfully intense novella. Somehow Rebecca Zanetti found a way to pack a full story into a few pages, giving enough to satisfy me while at the same time I'm clamoring for more!

Jared Reese was a 400+ year old vampire who was tasked with saving the life of his sister-in-law's BFF, Veronica. You see, Veronica had been poisoned and now had only days to live. However, the mating between these two characters would not only cure her, but also grant her immortality.

There were so many unrealistic elements to this story but it was part of what made it amazing. These unrealistic elements are part of what I love and appreciate so much of Paranormal Romance. Jared was oh so sexy, Alpha, scary, intelligent, protective and dominant. Veronica was smart and sassy, the perfect match for the strong and vicious vamp.

Now I am excited to add not only the rest of this author's work to my TBR because her writing was THAT GOOD, but I'm also adding the short stories that comprise the 1001 Dark Nights anthology.

DIRTY WICKED by Shayla Black - 4 stars
Short. Intense. Sexy. Suspenseful.

Nick has just gotten out of prison after being framed for a crime he didn't commit. Intent on getting revenge, he realizes he needs some help. Well, speak of the Angel. Sasha, the widow of his best friend, shows up with her baby girl in tow. Their running from the same people who not only set Nick up, but who killed her husband. It's a race against time, danger and death. But these two can't outrun their own desire for each other, which made for a pretty sweet ending.

Shayla Black hit this one out of the park. No surprise. This didn't read like a novella but it definitely left me wanting more.

THE ONLY ONE by Lauren Blakely - 4 stars
I liked this one. I liked it a lot. The story had very little drama, tons of steam, and oodles of sappy romance.

Ten years ago, Gabriel and Penny met and had three gloriously intimate days together. In love, they decide to meet up again in NY in a week to reunite in the city in which they'll both be building/starting their lives in. One week later, Penny is the only one who shows up. Fast forward 10 years and fate decides to step in the reunite this pair. And what a hot little reunion it was!

A short and sweet story about the role of destiny and about what can happen when "the one who got away"... comes back ;)

SWEET SURRENDER 
by Liliana Hart - 4 stars
This book was short, a little sweet, had many moments of high suspense, and was oh so sexy.

Grant was in Surrender after being forced to retire from the Detroit PD. He was a little bitter and a little lost when it came to deciding what he wanted to do with the rest of his life. He came to rest in Surrender at the request of his best friend while trying to figure out his next steps. Liza came to Surrender after the death of her aunt in order to settle her estate, which included the family bakery. Although a talented baker, her intention is to sell and get gone.

When these two characters meet, things heat up pretty quickly, in more ways than one. While they share an intense sexual chemistry and some obvious flirtation, shots are fired into the front window of the bakery. This is when the suspense part of the story started to rule the plot. Between trying to evade a trained killer and learning about each other and giving into their attraction, a lot happens. And all in just 24 hours!!

I'm new to this author but I must say that this was an entertaining little read. I'm definitely curious enough to try something else if this novella was anything to go by.

EDGE OF CHAOS by Molly E. Lee - 4 stars
Edge of Chaos read like a modern-day, new adult version of Twister. You remember that movie with Bill Paxton and Helen Hunt?

Those storms are no joke. Reading this story reminded me of why I love being a Canadian in Canada. No twisters!

Blake has been in an abusive relationship with her childhood friend, Justin, for so long that his vitriol is her new normal. She’s not the girl she used to be and has allowed herself to be brow-beaten, shoved aside, and disrespected. Her life lacks that special sizzle, but she can’t get out without worrying that Justin will do something drastic. She finds a new passion in meteorology, which leads her to a new group of friends and head of the gang is a storm chaser named Dash. A man she has an instant connection with. A man who has her questioning everything she’s accepted from her boyfriend. A man who not only listens, but opens her eyes to a new life. But will Blake allow herself to see?

I absolutely loved Dash. I would have given my right leg to get his perspective, but even through the lack of it, his charm, humor, and integrity shone brightly. He was such an interesting and complex character and I think that was illustrated clearly with every interaction he had with Blake. He was so patient, kind and understanding with her. He gave her exactly what she needed, even when she didn’t know she needed it. Whether it was a shoulder to cry on, a listening ear, or to give advice. He was always there… waiting.

I was waiting too. Waiting for him to get the girl. Waiting for him to find his happy. Waiting… waiting… waiting...

While Blake frustrated me immensely with her ‘I’m sorry’ and ‘poor me’ and self-blame nonsense, I understood it. It made the fact that she was a victim of her abusive relationship a focus of this story. It made her unwillingness to escape, the excuses she made, and her utter blindness to what was staring her in the face that much more realistic. So while I was internally screaming at her to fight, I knew that it was a process. That the build up of all that angst had to burst sometime.

I wasn’t completely satisfied with the ending. It was a HFN and I think these characters really deserved a HEA. However, I’ve noticed that this was just book one of a series and there is another book for these characters, so I’ll be sure to read that. If you’re a fan of angst-driven plots with tons of adventure, you’re really going to enjoy this story!

If you haven’t already grabbed one of these bundles to discover new authors for yourself, what are you waiting for? They’re sensual, intoxicating, and pack enough drama to tantalize the sensibilities of any devout romance reader. I can’t recommend the 1001 Dark Nights novellas enough!

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