Throwback Thursday // Killers in our Midst

November 02, 2023

Hey everyone and welcome to another Throwback Thursday! Every week I'll be sharing my book recommendations within a romantic trope.

Today I'm sharing with you the first five books dealing with killer heroes and/or heroines that I loved and reviewed on the blog. I love these types of stories and find that there isn't a lot of them out there for me to read. If you've got a recommendation, please let me know.

The Missing Link by J.M. Sevilla

This book was intense! Once you really got started, it was non-stop action, suspense, and all sorts of nonsense. Jay may have been deadly, but Lily was a quick learner :) I really need to look into if this author wrote more than the two books from this series that I fell in love with.

Find my review HERE

Cloak and Dagger by Nenia Campbell

This series was AMAZING!! It covers an assassin organization and the corruption(?) from within. I didn't like the heroine in this book, but she definitely grew on me as the series progressed. I'll be honest,but I fell in love with Michael (our killer) and couldn't get enough!

Find my review HERE

The Red Ledger: Part 1 by Meredith Wild

Tristan Stone was one heck of an assassin. And while this was supposed to be a second chance romance with an edge, I didn't care half as much for Isabel as I did for Tristan. I only wished this story was way hotter than it turned out to be.

Find my review HERE

Save Me by Tia Louise

This was the book that made me really fall in love with this author's writing. Mace and Jessa were a couple... and they were assassins. I loved it. It had love and suspense and the author did an incredible job balancing the action and romance. I wish she wrote more stories like this and gave me another couple like this one.

Find my review HERE

Tainted by N. Isabelle Blanco and Dee Garcia

This was an incredible series of books. It features a cop hunting a serial killer and the mysterious woman he gets involved with. While this part is obvious, it's the rest that takes you on a path of deception, attraction and blood.

Find my review HERE

Reviews // Duntroon, Hot Enough to Burn, and Yes Justin

October 31, 2023

Duntroon by Aaron L. Speer

Blurb from Goodreads:

Alicia Hetherington had been promised the world by who turned out to be nothing more than a liar and scum, Wilson Slade. Leaving her high and dry after sleeping with her, and now needing to get back home and forget this experience ever happened.

But fate had other plans.

Not only would she never forget this experience, getting home would not be as easy as it would seem. Sinister forces that craved the opportunity to hunt a young girl for her blood had picked up her scent and were on the hunt, determined to find her before she crossed the border. And they were closing in.

Out of the shadows from where they came, also came something else. A dark guardian. One who even killers like this had labelled "the devil who walks". The question was not only who would find her first, but who would make it out alive come morning?

Rating: ★★★★★

This was written perfectly! I felt immediately ensconced in the Undeadly Secrets world once again. Seeing this prequel featuring Alicia and a mysterious hunter absolutely made my day. There was killing and no small amount of fear and curiosity (mostly mine) and I'm way too excited over here to get my hands on more.

Hot Enough to Burn by Cynthia Eden

Blurb from Goodreads:

Do you believe in monsters? You should, they walk among humans every single day. Reporter Eve Bradley has known the truth about paranormals for a while, and her latest story has taken her inside the mysterious Genesis facility. It’s at Genesis that Eve first meets Subject Thirteen, Cain O’Connor. Big, gorgeous, and truly, truly HOT.

Cain is a phoenix shifter. Every time that he dies, he rises from the ashes…stronger, deadlier, and another step closer to losing his control. And what happens when a phoenix loses control? Welcome to hell on Earth.

Cain feels an instant connection with Eve, a woman who swears she wants to help him. The attraction between them burns hotter than his flames, and soon, Eve is the only link to sanity that Cain has as the world turns to fire around him.

Eve isn’t human, despite the cover she’s used for years, and she is more than capable of withstanding a little heat. But as their enemies plot to trap them, Eve and Cain will be forced to trust each other completely. Be forced to surrender to a desire that cannot be controlled, and soon, if they are not careful, it’s a desire that might just have the power to destroy them both.

If you want something too badly, if you want someone too much…you will never even see the fire coming, not until it’s too late. Be careful. You don’t want to get burned…

Rating: ★★★

I enjoyed the premise of this story, but I failed to connect to the characters. Not my first experience with a phoenix shifter, but I really liked how Cain was characterized. His mannerisms, triggers and powers were very unique. He would die and fire would bring him back to life, a little less sane each time. I was more intrigued by the vampire side character, Ryder, than anything else so I hope there's a story for him out there.

Yes, Justin by Michele Zurlo

Blurb from Goodreads:

After fifteen years and two kids, the romance has fled from Trish’s marriage. She’s a different woman now, and she wants different things. When she stumbles upon an emailed ad from Oasis, an adult fantasy fulfillment service, she seizes the opportunity to spend a weekend having her body and soul mastered by a man who is completely focused on her.

Justin is shocked when he finds out his wife is planning to cheat on him. Willing to do anything to keep the woman he loves, he arranges with Oasis to become the Dom she wants. He’ll carry out her kidnap fantasy, fulfill her desire to be dominated, and force her to confront the reasons she wanted to be there in the first place.

Publisher's This book contains explicit sexual situations, graphic language, and material that some readers may find anal play/intercourse, BDSM theme and elements including/not limited bondage, D/s, spanking, etc.)

Rating: ★★★

I really like how the author broached the topic of distance that is sure to come in most long-term relationships. It's true that we learn to take our significant other for granted sometimes. I like that the pressures of parenthood were added as well. The fact that the husband took initiative to learn what his wife needed and became the Dom to her Sub was hot. The scenes were tasteful and the love shared between them was unmistakeable.

Frozen In Ice by Cynthia Eden

Is he a drop dead gorgeous…killer?

Delilah “Lila” Darrow doesn’t belong in the world of the rich and famous, but for one night, she’s going to wear the fanciest dress she can find and pretend that she does. Her plan—get close to reclusive billionaire Archer Radcliffe and find out…is he a murderer?

She knows exactly what Archer likes. She knows how to slip beneath his guard. She knows how to make him fall for her. With the right tools, Delilah believes she can finally make Archer pay for the crime he committed so long ago.

Payback is calling…and she’s wearing a dress made for sin.

Delilah is part of a group of crime solvers called the Ice Breakers—an online team made up of individuals who have the goal of solving cold cases. Five years ago, Delilah’s sister disappeared without a trace. Since then, Delilah has made it her mission to close as many unsolved cases as possible. Archer Radcliffe will be the latest target in her quest.

Except…Archer turns the tables on her. He sees through her lies. Tries to seduce her. And, he also swears his innocence.

Can she trust him? Or is he playing her?

Now that he has Delilah at his side, Archer can finally get the justice—the vengeance—he has craved. The only problem? The beautiful Delilah will be in danger. But Archer intends to stick close to her. So close that the world will believe they are completely in love. So close that a deadly enemy will want to strike. So close that just maybe—if he’s not careful—Archer might begin to fall for the woman he intends to use…

Rating: ★★★

I love this author's writing, but I found this story to be a bit too absurd. Delilah was an agressive investigative reporter who tried too hard to prove that she was more than she was. She irked me and I'm not sure if it was all her or my intense dislike of reporters. Maybe I should avoid stories with reporters as main characters because of my bias.

Archer was supposed to be this cold, commanding and in control man who was accused of murder, but I didn't buy it. He was constantly losing control because of Delilah (spare me) and I found it all to be a bit overdone. Again, it could be because of my personal feelings so please take this review with a grain of salt.

I did really enjoy getting to the reveal of the big bad and finding out the motives and punishment. It did make this read worthwhile.

Series Review // The 'Burg Series by Kristen Ashley

October 30, 2023

Today's flashback is 'The Burg series by Kristen Ashley. This is an emotional contemporary romance that tackle tropes such as second chance, instalove, friends to lovers and more. There are even books with suspenseful elements that will keep you guessing.

Have you ever read these books? Are you interested?

And now I want to do a re-read :)

For You by Kristen Ashley

I. For You

Lieutenant Alexander Colton and February Owens were high school sweethearts. Everyone in their small town knew from the moment they met they were meant for each other. But something happened and Feb broke Colt’s heart then she turned wild and tragedy struck. Colt meted out revenge against the man who brought Feb low but even though Colt risked it all for her, Feb turned her back on him and left town.

Fifteen years later, Feb comes back to help run the family bar. But there’s so much water under the bridge separating her and Colt everyone knows they’ll never get back together.

Until someone starts hacking up people in Feb’s life. Colt is still Colt and Feb is still Feb so the town watches as Colt goes all out to find the murderer while trying to keep Feb safe.

As the bodies pile up, The Feds move in and a twisting, turning story unravels exposing a very sick man who has claimed numerous victims along the way, Feb and Colt battle their enduring attraction and the beautiful but lost history that weaves them together.

Rating - ★★★★★

What a wild ride. I've read a few KA books and this one.... Whoo... Not what I expected. Felt like I was reading a script for Criminal Minds. I wish there was more to the ending because I truly loved the characters in this book. Feb was an awesome woman. I feel like the emotional disclosures were pretty one-sided and would have liked for Alec to have revealed more of his heart. Maybe it's not manly or alpha but I still would have liked it. Overall, another great KA read!

At Peace by Kristen Ashley

II. At Peace

Violet Winters once had it all but lost it when her husband was murdered by a criminal madman. During a cold winter night Violet has to leave her warm bed to tell her neighbor to turn the music down. And that’s when she meets sinister, scarred, scarily attractive security specialist, Joe Callahan.

She wants to deny it, but Violet can’t beat back the hunger she feels for Joe so she gives in again and again. Feeling it himself, Joe feeds Vi’s hunger, breaking his own rules to keep her in his bed.

Even though Violet had only one man in her life, she’s sure Joe is giving her the signals and Vi decides she’s ready to take a second chance at life and, maybe, love. But Violet doesn’t know the dark secrets in Joe’s past, secrets so soul-wrenching, they’ve drained him dry. With nothing left to give, Joe’s determined to live his life alone and he breaks Violet’s heart.

Crushed by Joe’s betrayal, Violet comes to terms with the fact that, no matter what signals he gave, Joe was not theirs to win. But Violet’s husband’s murderer is obsessed with her and heartbreak again haunts the door of the Winters home. When it does Joe is forced to face the knowledge that he can’t fight Violet’s pull, she’s under his skin and filled him full to bursting.

Joe needs to win her back and put his life on the line to keep Violet safe. But, having had it all once, can Violet endure losing Joe?

Rating - ★★★★★

Oh wow. Oh wow oh wow oh wow!! KA hit it out the park with this one.

Violet: her strength and loyalty were limitless. She and her daughters endured so much loss and handled it with such grace. I cannot tell you how much I cried for them during this book. I am so glad that, as usual, KA provided them with a remarkable support group.

Joe: there are no words to define Joe. In the beginning he refers to himself as a "dick" but once you read the history behind the man... I won't say his behaviour will be justified but it will definitely be understood. His own loss and what I deem as a betrayal (crazy junkie bitch) would cripple many.

February is quoted to say what doesn't kill us can only make us stronger. These characters can certainly testify to the truth of this phrase. They are definitely stronger for the struggles they had to face and I couldn't be happier for all of them.

The epilogue was perfect. And of course I had to wipe away some more tears. This series is a must read for sure.

Golden Trail by Kristen Ashley

III. Golden Trail

Tanner Layne and Raquel Merrick fell in love young, hard and fast and both of them knew a beautiful life they thought would be forever.

Until Rocky left Layne, no explanation, no going back.

Layne escapes The ‘Burg only to come back years later because his ex-wife has hooked herself to the town jerk and Layne needs to make sure his sons get raised right. Layne manages to avoid Rocky but when Layne gets three bullets drilled into him while investigating a dirty cop, he can’t do that because Rocky stops avoiding Layne. They make a deal to work together to expose the dirty cop but they have no idea the strength of their enduring attraction or the sheer evil at work in The ‘Burg.

As Tanner Layne and Raquel Merrick play their game and dance around the pull that draws them together, Layne has to discover the dark secrets buried so deep in Rocky’s heart she doesn’t even know they’re there at the same time untangle a sinister web of crime so abhorrent it has to be stopped... at all costs.

And to do it, Layne has to enlist everyone, including his ex-CIA mentor, Rocky’s detective brother, the town’s unpredictable informant and Layne’s two teenage sons all the while stopping Rocky from doing something crazy and keeping their game secret so Layne won't get himself dead.

Rating - ★★★★★

Jeez!! This series is killing me, in the best possible way. Layne and Raquel's road to happiness was definitely a "rocky" one but well worth it. I laughed and cried so hard and so many times throughout this book. Oooh and I loved seeing all of the characters again. Layne gave Joe a run for badassness for sure lol. Just love that Joe was still scary and hot even though this is not his book. I really liked the introduction of Ryker. KA brought him forth and described him in a way that made him extremely appealing. This book was a behemoth of testosterone, hotness and alpha. Goodness, I cannot forget about Tripp and Jasper! They brought a uniqueness to the book that ties with Keira from the last book that made this book all the more endearing. And you can't miss when they inherited the best qualities of their father. So sweet. I missed Mike though but I guess he's being saved for the next book. The epilogue? Magnifique!!

Games of the Heart by Kristen Ashley

IV. Games of the Heart

From the balcony of his house, Mike Haines can see the quiet, commonplace beauty of the Holliday farm. But what he remembers is Dusty, the little sister of his high school girlfriend, who grew up there. As a teen, Dusty had gone off the rails but when she was a kid, she was sweet, she was funny and she had a special bond with Mike. After high school, she took off and Mike never saw her again.

Tragedy strikes Dusty’s family and she comes back to town. Mike thinks she hasn’t changed back to the sweet, funny girl he knew but instead continued to be selfish and thoughtless, leaving her family alone to deal with their mourning. He seeks her out and confronts her in an effort to understand what went wrong and to force her to sort herself out.

He finds out quickly he’s wrong about Dusty Holliday. Very wrong. After Mike discovers that, the bond they had years before snaps back into place in ways he would never suspect.

But Mike Haines had a bad marriage and then played games of the heart for a good woman...and lost. In order to protect himself and his kids, he’s cautious, he’s careful to read the signs and he’s not interested in finding a woman he has to fix.

When he learns what happened to Dusty, he thinks she needs to be fixed.

He swings, he misses and in this new game of hearts, Mike just got strike three.

Rating - ★★★★★

First, let me reiterate the fact that KA is a master of writing about a hot, badass alpha male. Oh my! I was excited for Mike's book and I was far from disappointed. Though not as action-packed as the previous books in the series, it was still worthwhile. I can't say which hero I favour more because I just can't choose. They are all hot in their own ways.

With this book, I appreciated the subplot with the children. It added so much meat to an already meaty story and filled me right up. I'm not going to go into detail with this. I suggest you get to reading. You will not be sorry!

I made a note of parts that struck me so I will list them to give an idea of how good this book really is!

Sully whistled then, “I gotta tell Raine this right away. I wait to get home tonight, she’ll tan my ass. She’ll want more daylight to spread the heartbreaking news around The ‘Burg that another prime bachelor has fallen. She loves that shit. Dashing hopes, killing dreams.”

Rivera went on, “You got the touch, bro, layin’ her shit out then talkin’ Dusty around in a night, cementin’ that shit by sendin’ her flowers. One day, my woman is plotting your murder. Next day, I get asked why she doesn’t get any flowers. I see you got it goin’ on. But f*ck, you’re killin’ me. I haven’t bought Jerra flowers since I pissed her off when we were datin’ and fell asleep durin’ some crappy-ass movie she forced me to take her to sayin’ that movie was Hollywood’s version of us. How could I fall asleep watching the story of us, she asks. And, bro, if that was us, we are borin’ as shit. Now, I got LeBrec all riled up ‘cause you’re up in Indiana doin’ the nasty and don’t mind takin’ a call. F*ck.”

“Is this us? Are we going to become Bicky and Bickrum McBickerson?” I fumed and Mike burst out laughing.

Mike’s eyes moved to Jerra who was dancing with Dusty on the wooden dance floor laid out on the grass in the Holliday yard. Their dance partner was Ryker, who, f*ck him, had his hands up in the air, his hips rolling, his teeth sunk into his lower lip and he looked like a white man rapper surrounded by classy, white ‘ho’s.

For all those alpha loving people out there, give this series a chance. No regrets.

The Promise by Kristen Ashley

V. The Promise

Since his brother’s death, Benny Bianchi has been nursing his grudge against the woman he thinks led to his brother’s downfall. He does this to bury the feelings he has for Francesca Concetti, his brother’s girl. But when Frankie takes a bullet while on the run with Benny’s cousin’s woman, Benny has to face those feelings.

The problem is Frankie has decided she’s paid her penance. Penance she didn’t deserve to pay. She’s done with Benny and the Bianchi family. She’s starting a new life away from Chicago and her heartbreaking history.

Benny has decided differently.

But Frankie has more demons she’s battling. Demons Benny wants to help her face. But life has landed so many hard knocks on Frankie she’s terrified of believing in the promise of Benny Bianchi and the good life he’s offering.

Frankie’s new life leads her to The ‘Burg, where Benny has ties, and she finds she not only hasn’t succeeded in getting away, she’s doesn’t want to.

Rating - ★★★★★

This book was seriously hot, sexy, mushy, and sweet!! Frankie's irrational way of thinking in the beginning really bugged me... A lot! But I totally got where she was coming from and totally loved Benny's patience with her.

I loved the cross-over with the Rock Chick series. Luke is still hot and badass!!

I almost removed a star from my rating. Something in the middle of the book really peeved me off!! I didn't like the scene with Tanner. Although nothing happened, just the possibility made me vomit a bit in my mouth. I love him and Rocky. Though I realize that these events took place before Golden Trail, I just don't think it was necessary. It left a smear on the beautiful memory of that book and I didn't like it. Not one bit!!

I am still giving it five stars because I believe that, despite that revolting scene, Benito and Francesca deserve it.

Hold On by Kristen Ashley

VI. Hold On

Since she was young, Cher Rivers knew she was not the kind of girl who got what she wanted. A girl who could hope. A girl who could dream. She knew a happily ever after just wasn't in the cards for her.

In love for years with the last bastion of the 'burg's eligible bachelors, Garrett Merrick, Cher worked hard at making him laugh. Being one of the guys. Having him in her life the only way she could. All this knowing he was in love with another woman.

The Merrick Family is known for loving deep. So when Cecelia Merrick was murdered, it marked the Merricks in a way none of them recovered. Both Cecelia's children found love. Both turned their backs on it. But Garrett "Merry" Merrick knew in his soul the woman he divorced years ago was the one for him.

Until the night when Cher took Garrett's back and things changed. The Merrick family loves deep. They also protect fiercely. And with his eyes finally open, Garrett sees the woman who truly is for him and he goes after her.

Rating - ★★★★★

The final book in the series and I am so sad to see it go. I loved each character for so many similar reasons. They were awesome! Ethan... Sigh! Such a great kid!

The epilogue was everything an epilogue should be. A wonderful way to revisit and grant closure with this awesome group of characters. I think this series has been bumped to my favourite by KA!! Thank you so much for gifting us with it!!

Review // Always Practice Safe Hex by Juliette Cross

October 28, 2023

Always Practice Safe Hex by Juliette Cross

How could I ever have thought him cold? I'd be lucky to not spontaneously combust the next time he touched me.
Funny thing was... I was more than happy to test that theory. More than willing to burn.

Always Practice Safe Hex by Juliette Cross

Always Practice Safe Hex by Juliette Cross

Rating - ★★★★1/2
Standalone - Stay a Spell #4
Genre and Trope - Paranormal Romance / enemies to lovers
POV - Dual 1st person
Heat - several descriptive scenes
Source - Kindle Unlimited
Length - 381 pages

Also in this series: Wolf Gone Wild * Don't Hex and Drive * Witches Get Stitches

Livvy Savoie is a people person. Not only does she have the magical gift of persuasion, but her natural charisma charms everyone she meets. She hasn’t met a person she didn’t like. Until her annoyingly brilliant competitor walks through the door. No matter how hard she denies it, loathing isn’t the only emotion she feels for him.

Grim reaper Gareth Blackwater is rarely, if ever, moved beyond his broody, stoic state. But the witch he’s partnered with in the public relations contest is destroying his peace of mind. He’s convinced that the flesh-melting attraction he feels for her is merely her witchy magic at work.

But forced proximity proves there is more than magic sparking between them. Livvy learns this enigmatic grim’s abilities are beyond any supernatural she has ever known. And when Livvy becomes the obsessive target of a dangerous wizard, Gareth proves just how powerful he truly is. Because no one is going to hurt his Lavinia.

My Two Cents

After already meeting the mysterious Gareth and not really understanding why Livvy had a problem with him, I was excited to find out everything with this book. And boy, did this author give me EVERYTHING!

Livvy and Gareth were competing for the same prize: a campaign behind the charity of their choice. Even Livvy had to admit that Gareth's cause was the best. After learning about why orphaned paranormals were so near and dear to his heart, I fell for this male right along with our heroine.

The truth behind Grims was so intriguing. I love how I still wonder what else there is to learn about them and their abilities. Gareth being the top dog of his kind made me get all tingly with excitement. He was the perfect match for Livvy and his protective instinct when it came to her made him a swoon-worthy hero.

There is a slimy, scary, harassment-prone character that we all will love to see get his, but aside from the creep factor, this was an amazing read. I was entertained from page one and I can't wait to dive back into this series and see these characters again.

The Author

Juliette lives in moss-laden Cajun country in Louisiana where she lives with her husband, four kids, and black lab, Kona. She is a multi-published author of paranormal and fantasy romance with confident, persevering heroines and dark, sexy heroes. While she enjoys reading and writing the dark, broody types, she also appreciates the fun, levity of humor in a good love story, so she tries to give her characters both on their way to their HEA.

Visit for more information

Review // Crisis on Infinite Earths and Flashpoint

You may or may not know this about me, but I'm obsessed with comics. I'm sure I'll get plenty of hate for this, but my favourite comics come from the DC Universe. There's just something about tortured heroes, truly psychotic villains, extraterrestrials, parallel Earths, doppelgangers, and everything in between that really gets me. Not to say I'm not a fan of Marvel, because I most definitely am... it's just DC (for me) has them beat.

Okay, so one of my favourite heroes of ALL TIME is The Flash/Barry Allen. His mother was murdered by a rival from the future, his father went to prison, his enemies were absolutely brutal... And yet this character always had a light to him that eased the pain. Of course, I love all of the speedsters (Garrick, Mercury, West, Allen, etc.), but Barry was the one I loved most. Imagine how devastated I was at the end of Crisis? And then imagine how thrilled I was at Rebirth?

So the other day, I did a rewatch of The Flash starring Grant Gustin (don't even get me started on how much I enjoyed the show and how much I will miss Gustin's portrayal of my fave) and decided to do a re-read of the most important events of The Flash's life. I chose Crisis and Flashpoint because they both did a great job of capturing not only this fan favourite, but all of the important characters who make up the DC Universe.

So here are my thoughts:

Crisis on Infinite Earths

Release: 1985-1986
Author: Marv Wolfman / Illustrator: George Perez
Length: 359 pages

In this series, The Monitor searches through the Earths to gather their mightiest heroes to help him in his fight against the Anti-Monitor. If they don't beat the bad guy, the entire multiverse will be destroyed and replaced with an anti-matter universe, with the Anti-Monitor as everyone's lord and master. Not good.

Important characters, aside from The Monitor, are Harbinger and Alexander Luthor Jr. (the son of Earth-3s Lex Luthor and Lois Lane). I remember liking this Luthor until Infinite Crisis. I'll be reading and reviewing that one later.
There's a ton of lead up to the triumphant(?) end. Many people, including heroes, die. I'm talking about TONS OF PEOPLE!! Picture Supergirl and Superman's reaction *shocked gasp*

The Flash sacrifices his life to destroy the Anti-Monitor's antimatter cannon, leaving behind his tattered suit and ring, a legacy for Wally West. I was left heartbroken yet full of relief that his sacrifice wasn't in vain.

The only real drawback to this series was the many unnecessary scenes and dialogue. It didn't translate well to the modern age for me. The humor wasn't funny, the nostalgia missed the spot, and I was more annoyed than intrigued.

Overall, I give this a 4 out of 5 stars, loving the many moving parts to achieve one end.


Release: 2011
Author: Geoff Johns / Illustrator: Andy Kubert
Length: 166 pages

If you could go back in time to prevent the most tragic and significant moment in your life, would you? Should you?

These questions are answered in Flashpoint. Kinda. It's not like Barry did it himself, but one change to his past led to catastrophic events in the present.

Aquaman and Wonder Woman are destroying the world in their bid to kill each other and rule the world. The Batman isn't Bruce, but his father. Cyborg is the new timeline's equivalent of Superman while Kalel is being held as a military lab experiment. So much has changed and Barry is the only one who can fix everything.

I was just happy to have Barry back, starring in such an incredible tale. I think my favourite scene is at the end, when he gives Bruce that letter from Thomas. AMAZING!!

This story gets 5 out of 5 stars from me. It will never get old (maybe it will in a few decades *shrug*) and I encourage fans to give it a re-read too!

Throwback Thursday // Vengeance and Vigilantes

October 26, 2023

Hey everyone and welcome to another Throwback Thursday! Every week I'll be sharing my book recommendations within a romantic trope.

Today I'm sharing with you the first five books posted on the blog dealing with vengeance and/or vigilantes. These stories are usually a win for me and I am always on the lookout for another stunner. If you know of any, please let me know.

I really love this trope and I hope if you haven't read any of the following books, you'll give one of them a try :)

Betrayed by a Kiss by Kris Rafferty

I remember, back in the beginning of my romance reading journey, I had asked my Goodreads friends for suspense recommendations and this one popped up a few times. It was so much better than I could have expected. It involves a somewhat naive hacker, a jaded ex-detective, and a plot to bring down corruption.

Find my review HERE

The Matriarch by Sloane Howell

I went through a time that whatever this author put out, I got my hands on it. The Matriarch is so different from anything else I had read from him at the time and I was hooked. I remember being bummed that there wasn't a book to follow. The story felt unfinished or maybe I was just greedy for more. If there is another book in this world he created, and you know about it, please please please leave that info below.

Find my review HERE

Dirty Wicked by Shayla Black

I'm not the only one who is a huge fan of the 1001 Dark Nights world, am I? I've only read a few books in this series by Shayla Black, which I enjoyed, so when I saw this novella available, I knew I'd be in for a great read. I was right. There's just something about a sexy PI willing to lay everything on the line for his client that gives me tingles.

Find my review HERE

Blood Script by Airicka Phoenix

This book made me fall for this author's words. It being my first pirate romance book, I knew I'd never look at anything naval the same way again! Captain James Crow was absolutely freaking delicious!!

Find my review HERE

Unhinged by Natasha Knight

It's been a while since I've read from this author, but I know that the next book I pick up will test my boundaries in the best of ways. More suspenseful than dark, her words and the worlds she creates seem very realistic... and scary. This tells of a military man with tons of damage and the woman who may have done him wrong.

Find my review HERE

Review // A Collection of Monstrous Short Stories by Lily Mayne

October 24, 2023

Warning: These stories contain explicit sexual content and are not suitable for young readers. The introduction for each short story contains content and spoiler warnings specific to that story. Main content warnings include explicit sexual content, non-human genitalia, mentions of death, injury and violence, restraint and mentions of past trauma, but please check the warnings specific to each short story.

A Collection of Monstrous Short Stories by Lily Mayne

My Rating - ★★★★★
Genre - Paranormal Romance
Trope - various (all mated couples aside from the novella, Ruke, which involved instalove)
POV - Primarily single 1st person
Heat - absolutely filthy
Format - ebook from Amazon
Length - 462 pages

Catch up with the original monster-human couple, Danny and Wyn, in their Wastes-style adventures; witness Moth and Wyn’s blossoming and potentially concerning friendship; find out all the new ways Edin has been frustrating Hunter (lovingly) since their story ended; and join Lor and Jugs in welcoming a new furry addition to their monster-world family.

Want to find out more about Wyn’s ex Orlith? In this collection, you can take a peek at some very old letters between the two telyths, read Orlith’s historic (pre-Danny) attempts to seduce our favourite grumpy Soul Eater, and meet his uptight and righteous older sibling.

Ruke (A Monstrous Novella)
In the brand new novella Ruke, human Jamie finally finds the one being he can trust after a lifetime of loneliness…

I was born the night monsters rose on earth. I’m a true child of the new world. I’ve never met a single other soul except for my dad, who decided to keep us out here in the Wastes when he escaped with me from the hospital that catastrophic night.

But now Dad’s gone, and I’m alone. Completely alone. I don’t trust humans—not raiders, not the military, not all the people living in those big dirty coastal cities—so I find the most remote spot I can to settle down and live out the rest of my life on my own, just like my dad always taught me was safest.

But I’m not on my own out here. Something is here with me—someone is leaving me strange gifts by my campfire every night. And suddenly, I realise that I don’t want to be alone anymore. I don’t want them to go.

When he finally shows himself to me, I realise that my mystery companion out here isn’t human.

And that suits me just fine.

Find it here: Goodreads * Amazon (FREE with KU)

My Two Cents

Where do I even start?
I've fallen for all of the couples introduced so far in this series and it was wonderful to get another chance to bask in their greatness.
I also love how adorable the author is. Her humor in these little snippets had me giggling.

Seeing the softer, more vulnerable sides to the monsters, the sides they usually only show their mates, is always special and each little story gave me that bit more to tip me from in love to absolute adoration. I cannot get enough of these creatures and being introduced to a new one, Ruke, was an unexpected treat. I'm not the only one who'd love for him to be able to bond with our beasties, am I?

This was an excellent collection to tide me over until I get my hands on the next monstrous book. I'm still pretty excited though!

The Author

Lily Mayne writes what she loves to read: achingly sweet yet gritty romances against unusual backdrops—dark, futuristic, dystopian and more.

She enjoys reading and writing (duh), cooking and baking, watching terrible horror movies and many other hobbies that would have potentially made her an ideal Victorian maid. Just a really lazy one.

She currently lives in the UK with her husband and several fluffballs, who like to make a lot of noise while she’s writing.

Find out more at

Review // Show Off by Lani Lynn Vale

Show Off by Lani Lynn Vale

I liked when he acted all possessive and cave man like.
It made me feel wanted and accepted.
Something I didn't know that I desperately needed until he'd given it to me.

Show Off by Lani Lynn Vale

Show Off by Lani Lynn Vale

My Rating - ★★★★1/2
Standalone - Welcome to the Circus #3
Genre - Contemporary Romance
Trope - forbidden / brother's friend
POV - Dual 1st person
Heat - several descriptive scenes
Source - eARC from the author
Length - 262 pages

Other books in the series: Fun House * Freak Show

Seventy shades of messed up.

That was what she’d been told about herself for nearly her entire life.

From a young age, she knew what it was like to be hated. To be loathed so much by a person that they literally resented the air you breathed.

For her entire childhood, she fought to live, despite her father’s constant effort to make her life a living hell.
Her sisters and brother have no clue what kind of closet psychopath their father really was, and she’ll die before she ruins their picture-perfect view of him.

Why? Because she’s already broken. There’s no fixing this kind of damaged. But there’s no reason everyone else needs to suffer, too.


From the moment Hannibal Peters laid eyes on Hades Singh, he knew she was the one.
That was why he ran.

That was why, when he saw her suffering, he couldn’t stay away.

Find it here: Goodreads * Amazon

Show Off by Lani Lynn Vale

My Two Cents

I had no clue how Lani Lynn Vale would redeem Hades Singh in my eyes, but after reading this book, I realized that I should never have doubted this author.

I absolutely freaking loved Hades!!

I actually like her more than I like her twin, Caristonia.
Go figure.

Hades was seriously misunderstood and the first person to see her, to really see her, was Hannibal. He understood her in a way that she didn't even know she craved. He filled all of her empty places and this author captured their relationship so perfectly.

There's a stalker after her sister and Hades is determined to catch him and stop him... with Hannibal's help. He's a veteran with his own security company so who better to have on her side? With their instantaneous connection and insane chemistry leading the way, it was no wonder that these two quickly realized how nicely they fit each other.

Her family was a bit oblivious, but I'm glad that Hades worked with them so that they could all be in a better place. I'm a huge fan of this family and the side characters introduced and can't wait to continue this series.

The Author

Lani Lynn Vale is married to the love of her life that she met in high school. She fell in love with him because he was wearing baseball pants. Ten years later they have three perfectly crazy children and a cat named Demon who likes to wake her up at ungodly times in the night. They live in the greatest state in the world, Texas. She writes contemporary and romantic suspense, and has a love for all things romance. You can find Lani in front of her computer writing away in her fictional characters world...that is until her husband and kids demand sustenance in the form of food and drink.

Visit for more information!