Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt. 6

November 26, 2022


I'm back with three more books that didn't work for me, but they have amazing ratings so I know it's a 'me' problem.

Maybe you've read one. Maybe you plan to. Let me know!



Wicked Fall by Sawyer Bennett


Genre - Erotic Romance

Never in your wildest dreams could you begin to imagine all the filthy and depraved things that go on inside The Wicked Horse. Step inside and Woolf Jennings will make every one of your dirty fantasies come true.

He's covered in a facade of deception. An enticing blend of multi-millionaire and hot-as-hell Wyoming rancher, those that think they know Woolf Jennings admire his abilities to preside as CEO of his family's cattle and oil empire. But only a privileged few truly understand what fuels the glitter of depravity in those gorgeous blue eyes. Only a few know he's opened up a sinfully erotic and private sex club named The Wicked Horse right at the base of the beautiful Teton Mountain range.

Sweet Callie Hayes has returned home to Wyoming and is looking forward to starting her life over again. After a night of impetuosity, she's managed to put herself right in Woolf's line of sight... the man who she foolishly offered up her virginity to years ago and was flatly turned down.

Now Woolf is seeing that Callie is all grown up and has a kinky side to her that leaves him as confused as it does turned on. Worse yet, both Callie's dirty desires and sweet heart are getting under his skin, and making Woolf question everything he's ever believed about himself.

I ended up not finishing this one. I thought I could handle reading something with menage like I used to, but I didn't enjoy it. It threw me off. So while the writing was on point, I couldn't stomach the story anymore. So I didn't even rate it.

────── ♔ ──────


Hold My Breath by Ginger Scott


Genre - Contemporary Romance

Fractions of seconds can do lots of damage. One decision can ruin lives. A blink can be tragic. And loving a Hollister…can hurt like hell.

I would know.

They say the average person can hold their breath under water for two full minutes when pushed to the extremes. Will Hollister has been holding his for years. The oldest of two elite swimming brothers, Will was always a dominant force in the water. But in life, he preferred to let his younger brother Evan be the one to shine.

Evan got the girl, and Will…he got to bury all of the secrets. A brother’s burden, the weight of it all nearly left him to drown.

The daughter of two Olympians, my path was set the day my fingertips first touched water. My future was as crystal clear as the lane I dominated in the pool—swim hard, win big, love a Hollister.

My life with Evan burned bright. He gave me arms to come home to, and a smile that fooled the world into believing everything was perfect. But it was Will who pushed me. Will…who really knew me.

And when all of the pieces fell, it was Will who started to pick them up.

In the end, the only thing that matters are those few precious seconds—and what we decide to do while we still have them in our grasp.

This was a DNF too. I couldn't like the heroine. She was too immature and I didn't like how she treated the hero. I didn't even get a chance to warm up to her and I felt no connection between them so I wasn't sold on the romance. It was proving too hard and boring to read, so I quit it and didn't rate it.

────── ♔ ──────


Awakened by Brenda K. Davies


Genre - Paranormal Romance

Traumatized by her past, and struggling to move on from it, Sera has spent the past three years of college hiding herself from the world and content to stay that way.

A chance encounter with Liam shatters her sheltered world, leaving her stunned and shaken by the strange feelings and emotions he arises in her, feelings she never thought she would experience and that frighten her in their intensity.

Harboring a dark and deadly secret of his own, Liam knows that he should stay away from Sera; that he will only bring her more hurt, but he is irresistibly drawn to her and unable to deny himself the pleasure that only she can bring to him.

But when their pasts collide with their present, and Liam’s true nature is revealed, will their love for each other be enough, or will they be torn apart forever?

I read and loved a previous series from this author, but this one didn't work for me. I couldn't stand the heroine, which would make it hard to enjoy the following books. I quit about halfway through and didn't think it would be fair to rate it so I gave it a DNF.

Review // Heart of Dragons by Aja James


"Don't worry, M. You're safe with me."

────── ♔ ──────


Heart of Dragons by Aja James


Standalone - Dragons Tails #6
Release - November 22, 2022
Genre - Paranormal Romance
Multiple POV - 3rd person
Heat - 5 out of 5 / several explicit scenes
Format/Source - beta and eARC provided by the author
Length - 342 pages
Publisher - Indie

Other books in the series:


Every lore of every clan, across time and space, dreamed of dragons. Did you ever wonder why?

Benjamin D’Angelo has officially replaced Ere the Black Dragon in the Jade Emperor’s mysterious quests. This time, Ere insists upon tagging along, for next to his Phoenix Mate Sorin, Ben is the greatest love of his life, and he just doesn’t trust anyone else to take care of his boy.

As always, their success is limited by seemingly arbitrary rules and an even more arbitrary sandglass of time. The only things they can count on is that: 1) each of their quests takes them to a time in the past, 2) they will witness (and perhaps even enable) True Love along the way, and 3) the Universal Balance hangs in...well, the balance.

Their sixth task is to retrieve the Stone Heart.

Ben and Ere return to medieval Britain some years after Ere’s first quest, reuniting with old friends in the process.

Meanwhile, Merlin the red dragon has escaped from the Celestial Realm to present day New York City. By luck or fate, he meets Annie, a fire witch, in his human form, drawn to her unique light. The present and past collide in the discovery and recovery of the Stone Heart, old wounds heal, and new Bonds are forged.

The end of the world may be just around the corner. Along the way, enemies may become lovers, reluctant friendships may form, and lots of hot, desperate, this-may-be-the-last-time-we-have-sex sex will definitely be had.

And who knows, you too may help earn the…

Heart of Dragons.

My Two Cents

5 "She's got you, Red" stars

The books of the Dragon Tails series have all been irresistible and Heart of Dragons was no exception!

Merlin was everything I love in a hero—loyal, devoted, honorable, sweet, deadly, and a little broken. Once, love made him do dangerous things. It made him sacrifice pieces of himself he didn't think he'd ever get back. It destroyed him, devasted him, left him bitter and alone.

Now he was human. He was awake. Aware. And he hated everything in this gods-forsaken Hell on Earth.

He lacked purpose until a bright flame drew his eye and his heart started pumping to a new beat.

Annie was that flame. As Ben's best friend and the daughter to immortals, she was no stranger to the impossible. And from the start, there was something about the red dragon that drew her. She felt compelled to give her all to him. To offer him comfort, to shield him from pain, to fight by his side.

He was the most broken man she'd ever seen. Despite that, because of that, he was the most intriguing and beautiful of all.

They were true mates... if only Red would get out of his own way.

With this story, this series, the author is showing us how love should be—unfettered and unconditional devotion.

And I'm not just talking about the romance, though it definitely deserves its own shine. The love these characters share with their loved ones, be them family or friends, is the stuff of dreams. The bonds they share, the way they stand for each other, how they work through their issues... it all has it's own beauty.

There was no doubt that Annie was meant for Merlin and he for her. The sparks that flew from their first meeting and how they fought through his old wounds and old hurts to find each other on the other side showed us how strong they will be. Destiny is a wondrous thing and it spoke so loudly for them.

She looked at him with something like awed compassion, as if she hurt too because he hurt. The same way she looked at him now. As if she knew him. As if he knew her.

There seems to be so much more to discover in this world of dragons and their immortal companions. With all of them coming together as they have, I can't even begin to imagine what the author has in store for us next. I just know that I'm all tingly and excited for whatever is to come.


The Author

Best-selling author, Aja James, just completed the Pure/ Dark Ones paranormal-fantasy romance series in 2020. If you want your heart battered, bruised, shattered and skewered, then put back together in the most glorious ways, check out the series below. Every couple gets an HEA, but they fight like hell for it on the way.

Aja is now working on her new series, Dragon Tails, because dragons are her favorite shifters of all!

Check out Aja's expanded distribution of the Pure/ Dark Ones series on Google, Apple, Kobo and Barnes & Noble Books.

Visit https://aja-james.blog for more information!

Review // Overlord by Anna Hackett

November 25, 2022


Rhain no longer just fought to protect his people. He'd also fight for this Earth woman who'd crashed into his world and changed everything.

────── ♔ ──────


Overlord by Anna Hackett


Standalone - Galactic Kings #1
Release - December 14, 2021
Genre Scifi Romance
Dual POV - 3rd person
Heat - 3.5 out of 5 / a few descriptive scenes
Format - ebook from Kindle Unlimited
Length - 302 pages
Publisher - Indie

When an experimental starship test goes horribly wrong, a test pilot from Earth is flung across the galaxy and crash lands on the planet of a powerful alien king.

Pilot Mallory West is having a really bad day. She’s crashed on an alien planet, her ship is in pieces, and her best friend Poppy, the scientist monitoring the experiment, is missing. Dazed and injured, she collapses into the arms of a big, silver-eyed warrior king. But when her rescuer cuffs her to a bed and accuses her of being a spy, Mal knows she has to escape her darkly tempting captor and find her friend.

Overlord Rhain Zhalto Sarkany is in a battle to protect his planet Zhalto and his people from his evil, power-hungry father. He’ll use every one of his deadly Zhalton abilities to win the fight against his father’s lethal warlord and army of vicious creatures. Rhain suspects the tough, intriguing woman he pulls from a starship wreck is a trap, but when Mal escapes, he is compelled to track her down.

Fighting their overwhelming attraction, Mal and Rhain join forces to hunt down the warlord and find Poppy. But as Mal’s body reacts to Zhalto’s environment, it awakens dormant powers, and Rhain is the only one who can help her. As the warlord launches a brutal attack, it will take all of Mal and Rhain’s combined powers to save their friends, the planet, and themselves.

My Two Cents

4.5 "Your Overlordness" stars

After reading this review by the lovely Renee @Addicted to Romance, I knew that I had to read it. It sounded right up my alley and I wondered if I would enjoy this author as much as she did.

I think I enjoyed her more!

Mal West was testing out new technology with her best friend when they were suddenly catapulted across the galaxy. On a strange planet, all she wanted was to make sure her missing friend was okay. Too bad the ruler of the planet thought she was a spy.

Rhain was doing everything he could to protect his people from his father's attacks. When a seemingly helpless damsel in distress crossed his path, he believed she may be a trap. He soon came to realize that this woman was not entirely helpless and that what he could share with her could be the answer to everything.

Right time, right place... who knows, but this book hit all the right spots for me. A kickass heroine who was a bit broken, a hero who was all warrior and appreciated having a female warrior by his side, tons of monsters and fight scenes... seriously, I couldn't ask for more here.

About the Author


Anna Hackett is a USA Today bestselling romance author who’s passionate about fast-paced, emotion-filled romantic suspense and science-fiction romance. She loves writing about people overcoming unbeatable odds and achieving seemingly impossible goals. Some of her bestselling series include Norcross Security, Team 52, Galactic Gladiators, and Eon Warriors.

Anna lives in Australia with her real-life hero and their two little boys. For more information on Anna and her books visit: www.annahackett.com

Review // Set by Alessa Thorn

November 23, 2022


"I only became known as a war god in the New Kingdom, Doctor. Before that, I was a hero—god of protection and love too."
"Then how did you change to a war god? It's the exact opposite of love."
Set's laugh was silky enough that heat curled inside of her.
"If you believe that, Ayla, the you've never been in love."

────── ♔ ──────


Set by Alessa Thorn


Standalone - Gods of the Duat #1
Release - June 24, 2021
Genre - Paranormal Romance
Dual POV - 3rd person
Heat - 3 out of 5
Format/Source - ebook borrowed from Kindle Unlimited
Length - 207 pages
Publisher - Thornstar Publishing Pty Ltd

Set thinks it’s going to be another boring day in Egypt when he's asked to protect his boss's secret daughter. Then he sees Doctor Ayla Neilos in the flesh and the god inside of him wakes for the first time in centuries.

Before he was known as a god of war, Set had been a god of protection, and he isn’t going to let anything happen to Ayla, no matter the cost.

As a doctor used to working in war zones, Ayla thought she would be prepared for the worst kind of conflict. That is until she’s kidnapped and then saved by a massive mercenary determined to keep her safe.

Not only does Ayla learn her father isn’t dead, but she’s also being baby sat by a god of war. A god who isn’t exactly acting like the villain that the stories have made him out to be.

Trying to hide from bounty hunters is hard enough, but neither Ayla or Set is going to be prepared for what they awaken in each other. With half of Egypt wanting them dead, they will both pay the ultimate price to keep each other safe.

My Two Cents

4.25 "The God of War is coming to get you" stars

After reading and loving this author's The Court of the Underworld series, I knew I needed to get my hands on her other books. I fell in love with the way she created this world full of mythical beings, walking and talking and living among us, burdened with problems both familiar and alien to us all.

Being introduced to Set was like stepping into a piece of unheard of history. I thought it was hilarious that he knew there were stories about him and that so much of what humans thought they knew... they didn't have a clue. Here was a god who had lived and loved and suffered and triumphed. A god who knew how to feel, to hurt, to distance himself from those who cared for him. And all it took for everything to come to a head was his protection detail of Ayla.

Both of these characters held such warmth that it was easy to fall into heavy like with them right from the start. And aside from the fact that my fellow nubians were somewhat white-washed, I enjoyed the heck out of this story.

There's action and adventure. Secrets and betrayals. Otherworldliness unlike anything I've read before. And the love that grew between Ayla and Set was a magic all its own.

As much as I didn't want to let this story go, I'm excited to get started on the books to come. Thoth accomplished the impossible to help these two out and he seems to be in for a world of trouble on his way to finding love. And then there's Anubis, who's been missing for a very long time. Seeing these great beings fall in love is always fun!

About the Author


Alessa Thorn believes that all monsters and villains deserve their happy endings. She prefers her clothes black, eyeliner winged and books full of hot romance. She thinks heroes are boring, so her first series 'The Court of the Underworld' centers around dark gods, monsters and villains from her favorite Greek Myths.

Find out more about this author at https://alessathornauthor.com

The Darkest Half by J.A. Redmerski

November 22, 2022


"I know who you are, Victor."

────── ♔ ──────


The Darkest Half by J.A. Redmerski


In the Company of Killers #8
Release - September 19, 2022
Genre - Romantic Thriller
Multiple POV - 1st person
Heat - 1.5 out of 5
Format/Source - ebook borrowed through Kindle Unlimited
Length - 210 pages
Publisher - Indie (Lonely Raven Studios)

Other books in the series: Killing Sarai * Reviving Izabel * The Swan & the Jackal * Seeds of Iniquity * Black Wolf * Behind the Hands That Kill * Spiders in the Grove


With the abandonment of Victor Faust and nowhere left to go, Izabel sets out on her own to continue the assassin’s life she has grown to become so intimate with. But she quickly learns the hard way that such a life cannot be survived alone. Within months, she is captured by The Order, with the true identity of the ever-elusive Vonnegut just a hair away. And to make matters worse—or better?—her cellmate is none other than Niklas Fleischer.

While Izabel and Niklas are being left to starve to death in hopes that their capture will result in Victor Faust’s surrender, Fredrik Gustavsson has also found himself in a predicament of his own. Willa, his childhood savior who became the most notorious female serial killer of the modern age, is keeping him imprisoned. But what does she want from him, a woman devoid of empathy or the faintest understanding of human emotion? And what will become of Fredrik if he fails to give her what she wants?

In the suspenseful conclusion of the In the Company of Killers series, Vonnegut will be revealed—to Izabel and Niklas’ shock and devastation—and the lives of the once thriving rogue Order led by Victor Faust will come full circle.

And not everyone will make it out alive.

My Two Cents

3.5 "Is this really the end?" stars

After seven books that had me worrying over the fate of these characters, pulling my hair out, biting my nails anxiously... We're finally here.

It's the final book and yet, there's so much story that could still be told that I'm not holding my breath that this is the real end.

So where does this book leave those we've come to care about?

Izabel and Nick were taken captive and for those that always wanted them to be together... get those thoughts out of your head. It was torture to watch them devolve and slowly die together, all in an attempt to draw out the true target: Victor. And where was our illustrious anti-hero? You'll never guess. And I can't even tell you because with the amount of twists and turns this story took, anything I tell you will spoil it.

Know this... Izabel was still one of the most unaccomplished agents I've ever seen portrayed. Girl still couldn't catch a clue. Her thoughts were so simple. You're about to die... where's your mind at???

And then there's Fredrik. I don't even know how I feel about where his journey took him. I didn't like it and I'm hoping there will be a book out there one day to give his time with us a proper end.

Nora made an appearance, but she wasn't given the true shine she deserved. I'm not her biggest fan, but she played her part and she did it well and I don't think this book did her justice.

All I know is this: my mind was blown by some things that happened in this book; I'm still on the fence when it comes to Izabel; Nick deserves all the best the world has to offer; and I will never get enough of Victor Faust!

About the Author


J.A. (Jessica) Redmerski is a New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and #1 Amazon best-selling author. She is also an international bestseller and award winner. Jessica is a hybrid author who began indie-publishing in 2012 and later signed several titles with a traditional publisher. Her works have been translated into over twenty languages and have been optioned for film and television.

In addition to writing books, she works with various programs to create her own cover art, interior art, design, formatting, and fantasy maps. Jessica loves The Golden Girls, Xena: Warrior Princess, nature, the universe, anime, manga, bookstores, and fantasizing about the apocalypse. She is from the United States but currently lives in Mexico with her husband.

Visit http://jessicaredmerski.com for more information

The Kingdom Series by Marie Hall

November 16, 2022

Her Mad Hatter


Standalone - Kingdom #1
Release - July 7, 2012
Genre - Fantasy Romance
Multiple POV - 3rd person
Heat - 3 out of 5
Format/Source - ebook purchase from Amazon
Length - 123 pages

Alice is all grown up. Running the Mad Hatter's Cupcakery and Tea Shoppe is a delicious job, until fate--and a fairy godmother with a weakness for bad boys--throws her a curveball. Now, Alice is the newest resident of Wonderland, where the Mad Hatter fuels her fantasies and thrills her body with his dark touch.

The Mad Hatter may have a voice and a body made for sex, but he takes no lovers. Ever. But a determined fairy godmother has forced Alice into Wonderland--and his arms. Now, as desire and madness converge, the Hatter must decide if he will fight the fairy godmother's mating--or fight for Alice.


My Review: 3 stars
A new-to-me author just found a new fan! I loved the way she captured the Hatter, how she illustrated the madness of Kingdom and all of its creatures. This story was unlike anything else I've ever read before and I'm in love with the magic of it all. Alice was nothing like the Alice of storybooks. And the Hatter... he gave me the deliciousness that Johnny Depp gave this character. It's no wonder that Alice saw the same thing. He was a nut, but Alice was able to see beyond his mad utterings into the amazing man he truly was. There was some push and pull, some major resistance, but in the end this was an entertaining story.



Gerard's Beauty


Standalone - Kingdom #2
Release - July 28, 2012
Genre - Fantasy Romance
Multiple POV - 3rd person
Heat - 3 out of 5
Format/Source - ebook purchase from Amazon
Length - 188 pages

Betty Hart has had it with men. Jilted in love, her life now consists of shelving books by day, watching too much Anime by night, and occasionally dressing up like a superhero on the weekends with her fellow ‘Bleeding Heart’ nerds. Men are not welcome and very much unwanted. Especially the sexy Frenchman who saunters into her library reeking of alcohol and looking like he went one too many rounds in the ring.

Gerard Caron is in trouble. Again. Caught with his pants down (literally) he’s forced to seek asylum on Earth while his fairy godmother tries to keep Prince Charming from going all ‘Off with his head’. Maybe, messing around with the King’s daughter hadn’t been such a great idea after all, not that Gerard knew the silly redhead was a princess. But his fairy godmother knows the only way to save his life is to finally pair Gerard with his perfect mate, whether he’s willing or not.

From the moment Gerard lays eyes on the nerdy librarian he knows he must have her, but Betty is unlike any woman he’s ever known. He thought Betty would come as willingly to his bed as every other woman before her, but she is a woman who demands respect and even… horror of all horrors… love. Is it possible for a self-proclaimed Casanova to change his ways?


My Review: 3 stars
Gerard was a manwhore extraordinaire. Aside from Belle, he never delved beneath the surface, never trusted that there was only one female for him. Misunderstood and bitter about it (I kinda felt bad for the guy), he acts out. Dude was immature and ridiculous. When he went a bit too far, he's punished by spending time on Earth and making his 'one true love' fall in love with him. But Betty isn't like the vapid or superficial ladies he's used to. His game doesn't work. I loved when he finally got real with her and with himself. There was so much more to the man hidden beneath the surface and the author did an amazing job with all of it.



Red and Her Wolf


Standalone - Kingdom #3
Release - September 26, 2012
Genre - Fantasy Romance
Multiple POV - 3rd person
Heat - 3.5 out of 5
Format/Source - ebook purchase from Amazon
Length - 213 pages

Long ago there lived a beautiful child. Her name was Violet. Fair of skin, with blonde hair and large blue eyes. Born of wild magic, she was a woman with a child’s heart. Innocent and lovely, but not at all what she seemed--you see Violet went by another name: The Heartsong.

She was the child of fairy magic, the physical manifestation of all fae kinds unbridled power. Cosseted and pampered, she grew up in isolation, never knowing who she really was, or why there were those who’d seek to harm her.

Ewan of the Blackfoot Clan is a wolf with a problem. He’s been sent to kill the Heartsong, but the moment he lays eyes on the blonde beauty he knows he’ll defy the evil fae he works for to claim Violet as his own.

This is the tale of Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf, as it really happened...


My Review: 4 stars
This was my favorite story of the series so far. Where the other books were light and humorous, this one was dark and mysterious. Violet was pure magic. She was the result of dark magic being purged from the fairies and all dark emotions are what fueled her. Know the story of Little Red Riding Hood? Well, you've never heard it like this. What if the wolf didn't do the awful things that myth made up? What if he was meant to be with Red?

That's what this book was about... and so much more! Red hated Ewan for what she believed he had done. And when she learns the truth, she has to fight against everything she thought she knew and believed. Her story was all about turning that love into hate and destroying the darkness. It was such a beautiful and unique way of telling this fairytale and I was far too infatuated with Ewan. He was everything that was good and kind and sweet and sexy... he was yummy. And if you love retellings, you need to read this one!



Jinni's Wish


Standalone - Kingdom #4
Release - November 26, 2012
Genre - Fantasy Romance
Multiple POV - 3rd person
Format/Source - ebook borrowed through Kindle Unlimited
Length - 137 pages

A long, long time ago there lived a man. A Jinni, who had one wish. To know love. But the woman he thought he knew betrayed him and the love he thought they shared. Tortured for his crimes, he was cast out of Kingdom, stripped of all his powers, left to langour in pain and solitude, until eventually he becomes nothing but a ghost...

Paz Lopez is an artist with a dream. To buy a ridiculously large penthouse in the swankiest section of Chicago. But there's just one hitch, she has no man to share her dream with. A fateful visit to a carnival and Madam Pandora's tent sends Paz on a mission to find the love of her life before it's too late.

But the Madam forgot to tell Paz one very important detail... to meet him, Paz will have to die first.


My Review: 3.5 stars
This may have been the most magical book of the series thus far. The love that developed for both Jinni and Paz happened in the inbetween. She was hovering at death's door and he was slowly slipping away. Only what they felt for each other kept them tethered to our world. Their story was beautiful, painful, eerie, and lovely. I'm really enjoying myself with these books!



Hook's Pan


Standalone - Kingdom #5
Release - April 23, 2013
Genre - Fantasy Romance
Multiple POV - 3rd person
Heat - 3.5 out of 5
Format/Source - ebook borrowed through Kindle Unlimited
Length - 172 pages

Trishelle Page has known pain in her life, but instead of it making her weak, she's stronger. Confident. That is until the day a fairy kidnaps her during her staring role in Peter Pan's play and tells her not only do fairy tales exist, but that she's the soulmate of the pirate they call Hook, making her question everything she ever thought she knew.

Captain James Hook is a man at the end of his rope. He's not the villainous bastard tales have made him out to be. So when the curvaceous blonde drops, literally, at his feet he aims to prove it to her. If only to get her into his bed.

What neither one knows is that fate and magic are conspiring and they can deny the attraction all they want but the end is already written, it's just a matter of getting there.


My Review: 2 stars
This was my least favorite book of the bunch. I didn't like Trishelle when she was introduced in Gerard's Beauty and I liked her even less here. Which sucked because I was hoping this book would make me like her more. As pathetic and sad as she was, I figured I would feel an ounce of pity or compassion. I was just annoyed. The only thing that saved this book was the magic of Neverland and the wonder of James Hook. Dude was delicious!!

October 2022 Bookish Recap

November 09, 2022


Hello hello!

I know this is late. I'm always late with these things and as many of you have noticed, I've been missing for the last couple of weeks. I had to take a mental health break. Sometimes, being online, communicating with people, posting stuff... it takes a toll. So I took a step back and now I'm here, better than before. I'm looking forward to finding and loving new posts, speaking with people, and reading again.

My October wasn't the best or worst. It was simply there. I can only hope November is better!

Stats

Total Books Read: 8
Total Pages Read: 2998
DNFs or No Rating: 0
From my TBR: 2
Avg. Rating: 3.83

All the books

I found three books to absolutely love!



The other books I still found worthwhile (and would recommend) were:

A Soul to Keep by Opal Reyne
Risk On Ice by S.R. Grey
Devil of Dublin by B.B. Easton
Kiss of a Demon King by Kresley Cole
Witches Get Stitches by Juliette Cross

Added to my tbr


Book Haul

Aside from what I got from KU, I've bought nothing. Well, I did buy stuff, but I haven't received them in the mail yet. Can't wait to share them with you in the next recap post!



I hope you find only the best reads!

Talk soon,


xo, Natalie

The Mermen Trilogy by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff


My Rating: 3.5 stars

Goodreads Link: The Mermen Trilogy

MERMEN: Book 1
These Mermen Don’t Have Tails, They’re Deadly as Hell, and They’ve Got Something He Wants…

INFAMOUS BACHELOR and SELF-MADE BILLIONAIRE ROEN DORAN IS A BASTARD. Yes, he knows it. And no, he doesn’t care. He’s got money and power, and he depends on no one. But when his estranged father dies, willing him a secret island, Roen will come face to face with an even bigger secret: its occupants. And these savage, sea-obsessed warriors are quick to make their position clear: Leave now or die.

There’s only one problem. Nobody tells Roen what to do. Ever. Oh, and one other thing. He’s just met the island’s other new “guest” and something about her brings out his possessive side.

SOLE SHIPWRECK SURVIVOR LIV STRATTON had been adrift at sea for ten grueling days when salvation miraculously appeared: an uncharted island. Only, the deceivingly beautiful men who live there aren’t interested in saving her. No, not at all. Because they somehow believe she is their property, a gift from the ocean to do with as they please. This is not good.

Her only hope? Billionaire Roen Doran, of all people. A man who’s said to care for nothing and no one. But if he’s so heartless, then why is he about to risk everything to help her?
~~~~~~~~~~
MERMADMEN: Book 2
HE NEVER WANTED THIS. HE ONLY WANTED HER...

EVERYTHING ABOUT THE ISLAND OF EL CORAZÓN IS WRONG. The men are ruthless warriors who call themselves mermen but don't have any fish parts, the island isn't exactly an island, and the women...well, let's just say their story isn't pretty. More like a nightmare. Which is exactly why billionaire Roen Doran will do anything to protect the woman he can't live without from that violent place. Including becoming the island's leader and giving her up forever.

WHEN LIV STRATTON ESCAPED THAT TERRIFYING ISLAND in the North Pacific after being shipwrecked, she didn't just leave behind the horror, she left behind Roen Doran. A man she didn't know, but who risked everything to save her. And now her heart can't seem to move on. So part of her wonders if it's somehow her fault she's been taken against her will and locked inside a ship bound for El Corazón. But an even bigger part wonders if Roen will lift a finger to save her this time. After all, now he's one of them...

~~~~~~~~~~
MERCILESS: Book 3
ONE GIRL. ONE EVIL ISLAND. AND A FIGHT TO THE LAST BREATH.

Liv Stratton has had enough of evil mermen and the psychotic living island they call home. She’s been kidnapped, caged, attacked by sea creatures, and nearly drowned. A nice small-town girl can only take so much.

But after beating the impossible odds, Liv is finally safe at home in Alaska, only to realize that everything she holds dearest in this world is still back on that crazy island. Possibly dead. And if she wants to know what has become of the man she loves and her sister, she’ll have to return and confront the one thing she’s been trying to get away from: the island herself.

Only this time, Liv isn’t the same frightened human she once was. This time, they’ve messed with the wrong girl.




Genre - Paranormal Romance
Primarily Dual POV - 3rd person
Heat - practically non-existent / they had sex one and a half times (maybe), however, there is plenty of sexy talk
Format/Source - ebook purchases from Amazon

I don't know if you know anything about the men that MJP creates, but they are usually delicious and ridiculous. Roen was absolutely no different!

In book one, we're introduced to Liv, who's shipwrecked and left drifting in a life raft in the middle of the ocean. A man in said ocean brings her to shore on an island that appeared out of nowhere. Here she finds a world of hotness... men who defy belief, who are living their own definition of reality. They believe they're mermen on legs, that the island is alive, and that Liv is meant to be claimed.

Roen was one of the richest men in the world, owning a successful shipping conglomerate. A note from his dead father has him sailing into the middle of nowhere. He finds the vanishing island... and Liv.

It's lust at first sight and yet they can't stand each other. Or can they? It's them against an island full of mad mermen and when Roen starts acting like them, he does everything in his power to protect Liv. Even if it means sacrificing his own happiness with her.

By the end of the third book, these characters really became beloved people to me and I was a bit sad to see them go. The island was a real piece of work, the author did an incredible job of bringing the weirdness to life. I was amazed at the parallels that were drawn between this and reality. It was so surreal and wildly entertaining.

And don't even get me started on the note the author left at the end. I couldn't agree more with everything she said and I'm grateful she included these words.

After a long and horrific journey, Liv and Roen do get to enjoy a happy ending and honestly, I couldn't be happier for them.

Review // Brute Force, Machine, & Primal Urges by Lizzy Bequin

November 08, 2022

After reading and enjoying Invaded by Lizzy Bequin, I knew I wanted to read more from her. I knew I needed more of her books in my life. So I went through and downloaded a bunch to my kindle. Here are the three I've read so far!



Brute Force


Standalone
Release - May 20, 2021
Genre - SciFi Romance
Dual POV - 1st person
Heat - 5 out of 5 / although it took a while to get there, it was filthy
Format/Source - borrowed through Kindle Unlimited
Length - 168 pages
Publisher - Indie

My Rating - 3.5 stars

Stripped of my dignity and locked in a cage.
My only chance for freedom?
A savage alien brute...

I am the rightful queen of Xaridia. In theory at least. But in reality, I’ve been betrayed by those closest to me. Locked away in a cage.

I am not alone, however.

My new neighbor is a captured Dugorim warlord, the enemy of my people. He is a massive brute of an alien. Seven feet of bulging muscles and growling dominance.

I am grateful for the wall of bars separating us. This beast could easily tear me apart.

But he says he has a plan for escape. His species has a protective instinct that makes him strong enough to bend solid steel.

There’s just one little problem...

For his instinct to manifest, he requires a mate. And the way he’s looking at me through those bars tells me who he has in mind. That look makes me flush with shame and quiver with anticipation.

To what lengths am I willing to go to win my freedom?

Am I willing to submit to the alien’s plan?

Am I willing to kneel before him?


────── ♔ ──────


This was an instalove story of deliciousness. It wasn't super smutty, it wasn't super deep, but it definitely hit the spot just right.

She was sitting in her own dungeon for daring to want peace. He was sitting there because he was an alpha alien. They couldn't be any more different, but they had a common goal: freedom.

And the method of gaining that freedom was both ridiculous and entertaining. Mating to gain invincible strength. Mating through bars. Hilarious and hot!

And the epilogue, with everything coming full circle with their son... amazing!



Machine


Standalone
Release - July 1, 2020
Genre - SciFi Romance
Dual POV - 1st person
Heat - 5 out of 5 / not filthy, but explicit
Format/Source - ebook borrowed through Kindle Unlimited
Length - 108 pages
Publisher - Indie

My Rating - 4 stars

He’s got me right where he wants me...

Zoe:
As soon as I saw the lifeless, derelict research vessel, I knew we should leave it alone. But I never expected to find myself caught in a nightmare such as this.
Captured by a rogue A.I.
His bionic tentacles have dragged me deep into his lair. He says I’m his specimen now. He says he’s going to examine me. He says I will teach him how to be a man.
And to make matters worse, he’s creating an artificial body for himself.
A brutal, dominating body, layered with hard, bionic muscles.
I should be trying to run for my life. But my body is responding to his curious touch in unexpected ways.
Shameful ways.
Now escape is the last thing on my mind...

“She broke my programming. Now I will break her...”

Eon:
I’ve never seen a specimen quite like her before.
When my digital mind was damaged in the catastrophe, I lost all memory of women.
Zoe will help me recover it.
I will study her habits. I will study her emotions. And most of all, I will study her soft and fertile anatomy.
I will be exceedingly thorough.
This female specimen belongs to me now. She is mine and mine alone.
I will not share her. I will never allow her to escape.
There is so much she can teach me about being a man.
And I’m so very eager to learn...


────── ♔ ──────


This book had me wondering what it would be like to have a cybernetic man of my own. Eon was freaking yummy! Zoe was trapped with him after being duped into a suicide mission. He was her only hope for survival and his 'brother' was determined to wipe her out... along with the rest of humanity. Insanely hot times and the discovery of selves were the driving points of this story. I enjoyed the heck out of it. I wonder if they were still out there somewhere during the epilogue many years in the future.



Primal Urges


Standalone - Primal Alphas #1
Release - September 30, 2019
Genre - SciFi Romance
Dual POV - 1st person
Heat - 4 out of 5
Format/Source - ebook borrowed through Kindle Unlimited
Length - 97 pages
Publisher Indie

My Rating - 3 stars

At the Facility, I was used as a human guinea pig for the professor’s bizarre whims. Now I have escaped, but I don’t know how long I can last in this unforgiving wilderness. Lost and alone, I fear I will fall prey to one of the predators inhabiting this dark forest.

But I never expected the predator would come in the shape of a man.

The rough and rugged alpha warns me to stay far away from him. He tells me he is a beast with carnal instincts that he can’t restrain. He warns that if I stay, he will have no choice but to pin me down and use me in the most animalistic ways imaginable, shattering me with climaxes like I’ve never dared to experience before.

He promises he will break me.

I should heed his warnings and flee, but there is something about this man’s scent that tells me I was created to be his mate, and it makes me want to put all of his threats to the test. Now I’m about to find out what happens when an alpha gives in to his primal urges.


────── ♔ ──────


The idea behind this story was so intriguing that I wanted more. I'm really interested in stories that delve into the madness of men. Trying to make supermen, enslaving fellow humans, changing our biochemistry, unleashing us on each other and the world... so interesting.

Once 'normal' humans, Gareth and Allegra were experimented on and controlled. Even when they were free, the facility was still trying to usher them into doing what they wanted. Their fight for freedom was very entertaining and I think it woud have only been better if this book was longer. I've seen what this author can do if she's given time and space to allow her story to grow. I can only imagine how much more I would have enjoyed this book. And her epilogues are so sweet!