August 23, 2012

How did I miss this?

OMG!  How did I not know that Shanna Swendson had finally released the long awaited 5th book in her wonderful MSI Inc. series?  I feel like such a dope.

For all you readers who love MSI Inc. here are the details.

Much Ado About Magic
MSI Inc. Bk 5
Shanna Swendson


ISBN: 9781620510346
Available on Amazon Kindle (eBook only)


To Do: Manage Magical Mayhem

Katie Chandler is back in New York and just in time to help Magic, Spells, and Illusions, Inc. with the latest crisis. A magical crime wave is sweeping the city and wizarding whiz Owen Palmer thinks the chaos-causing spells look awfully familiar – like something his arch-rival Phelan Idris would create.

When Idris's rogue firm Spellworks starts selling amulets to protect against these spells, Owen's suspicions are confirmed. While Owen and the other wizards scramble to unravel the wicked spells, it’s Katie's job as the new director of marketing for MSI to fight the battle of public perception.

When Katie stages a showcase for MSI's magical achievements, she doesn’t realize she’s playing right into a devious plot more than three decades in the making. To save the magical world, she’ll have to prove who the real enemy is by digging deeper into Owen's mysterious past. If she fails, she not only stands to lose a magical war, but she could also lose the man she loves.

To read an excerpt, head on over to Shanna's website

Frost Burned cover released

Release Date: 7 February 2013

Shapeshifter Mercy Thompson's life is calming down, at least enough that she can focus on mundane matters like Black Friday sales. But on her return, Mercy is unable to contact her mate, Alpha Adam Hauptman, or the other members of their pack. All she knows is that Adam is angry and in pain. With the werewolves fighting a political battle to gain acceptance from the public, Mercy fears Adam's disappearance may be related - and that he and the pack are in serious danger. Outclassed and on her own, Mercy may be forced to seek assistance from the most unlikely of allies: the vampire seethe.

I meant to post this cover the other day but life got in the road, so here it is.  Frost Burned is the 8th book in the Mercy Thompson series, and I can't wait to get my hands on a copy when it's released. Mercy just keeps getting better and better.

New this week

Mmmm, I'm sooo happy.  I just got some new books yesterday and I've already devoured them all, staying up until nearly 4am reading.  I just couldn't seem to put them down!  I'm paying for it now thought.  My eyes feel like they're full of sand, but it was worth it :-D

  • Always the Vampire - Nancy Haddock
  • Deadly Descendant - Jenna Black
  • Touch of Frost - Jennifer Estep
  • Stygian's Honor - Lora Leigh
  • Nightshifted - Cassie Alexander
  • A Taste of the Nightlife - Sarah Zettel

Of all the books the only one that didn't really hit the spot was Nightshifted.  I'll give it a few days and try again - perhaps I was too tired? - and I'll post reviews as soon as I get a good nights sleep.  But in the meantime, I'm off to Book Depository to order some more books.  Wish me luck.


Kannon Dupree: Timestalker Bk 1
Rhonda Roberts

HarperVoyager, 2009 (582 p.)
ISBN: 978-0-7322-8855-6

Browse Inside Gladiatrix by Rhonda Roberts
Back cover

When time travel was invented everyone thought it would solve their problems. 
But for 22 year old Kannon Jarratt it's about to turn her life upside down ...

Left for dead in the Blue Mountains when she was just a baby, Kannon has now 
discovered that an American Time Marshal, Victoria Dupree, could be her real 
mother. But Victoria has gone missing in ancient Rome while investigating 
the Hierophant, the mysterious leader of the Isis cult.

Kannon desperately wants to find Victoria but the US National Time Administration 
is standing in her way...

Finally!  An Australian author that kicks arse.  Rhonda Roberts introduces us to Kannon, star of the  Kannon Dupree: Timestalker series.  A feisty new heroine for a new millennium.

Set in a contemporary alternate reality, 22 year old Kannon’s life is about to be turned on its head.  Left for dead in the Blue Mountains as a baby, Kannon survived and is all grown up now.  After the death of her surrogate mother, she begins to look into her own origins and she uncovers the truth of her identity.    Travelling to America, she believes that American Time Marshall, Victoria Dupree, could be her real mother.  Victoria lost her baby girl about the same time that Kannon appeared in Australia, but Victoria has gone missing. Desperate to find Victoria, the only thing that stands in her way is the US National Time Administration . . . and two thousand years.

I devoured this book, and though I have only found a few Aussie authors that write the kind of paranormal/urban fantasy books I like, this does not strictly fall under that category.  A time travelling Aussie was definitely a draw card for me, but it was the cover was what drew my eye. And after reading the blurb I just could not resist temptation.

Kannon is a smart, tough and as much of a kick arse heroine as you could wish for.  It takes balls to travel back in time with no help or background information and yet she does just for the chance to find her mother.  Now, there is a lot of action packed into this detective story, and a dash of espionage thrown in for good measure.  But the icing on the cake is the burgeoning romance between Kannon and an ex-gladiator, Alexander, whose Roman mistress bought him to serve as Kannon’s bodyguard.

Be warned, it can get a little gruesome at times - hello, Gladiators! - but there is no overt or graphic sex in this book thank goodness.

Now, if this ticks all your boxes be aware that so far there two other books published by the author in this series - Hoodwink and Coyote (out 1 Sept 2012) - and you need to read them in order or you'll get totally lost.  If you’re in Australia then Gladiatrix, Hoodwink and Coyote, are available at Collins, Fishpond, QBD, and other bookstores.  I haven’t found paperback copies available on any overseas databases yet like Amazon or Book Depository, though you can buy it as an eBook through Kindle.

If you love Kylie Chan or Keri Arthur then you’ll enjoy this book.  Not for bus or train consumption as you’ll get too into it and not want to stop – and who knows where you’ll end up :P

Revisit Mackenzie's Mountain

Mackenzie's Mountain
Linda Howard

First Published (AU) 1989
Reissued (AU) in The Mackenzies 1999

Back cover

Wolf Mackenzie: The loner had a way with horses and a deep mistrust
for outsiders.  Until one woman dared to venture onto Mackenzie's 
mountain, determined to tame the rugged half-breed.

Linda Howard’s tale of a prim and proper schoolteacher who falls in love with the town’s pariah - a half-breed Indian called Wolf Mackenzie.  He is a loner who works with horses and lives with his son, Joe, on their mountain ranch.  When Joe quits school, Mary (the new schoolteacher), turns up at his house to try and get Joe back into school.  But instead she has to be rescued from her broken down car by his father, Wolf.  The instant these two meet sparks fly.

Mary Elizabeth Potter, Mary, is as sweet as they come.  Raised by her late Aunt Edith, she is fascinated by this big, complex man.  Released from prison for a crime he didn’t commit, he holds a grudge against the people Ruth, Wyoming.  When a few local women are attacked and raped, it doesn’t take long for the people of Ruth to point their finger at him.  Incensed by their bigotry, Mary steamrolls ahead, tutoring Joe, and trying to open people’s eyes to truth about the Mackenzie men.  It doesn’t look too good for Mary’s plans until she herself is attacked and is able to identify the assailant as a white man.  This puts a bee in the bonnets of the residents of Ruth, who now have to look within their own to find a rapist.

Mackenzie’s Mountain is a rare combination of romance and action.  Wolf’s initial reaction to Mary and her acceptance of it will nearly have you in tears.  Joe, as a teenager, is far more mature than his years but you can see the type of man he will become (and read about it in Mackenzie’s Mission) and the drive and determination that he has to get him there.  Wolf is wonderful as the standoffish cowboy who desperately tries to keep Mary safe and free from speculation regarding her attraction to him.  Mary is a kitten who thinks herself a tiger.  I loved them.  I wouldn’t have Ms. Howard change a thing about this book.

Although this was first published in 1989 as a single story Mills & Boon book, my copy includes both Mackenzie’s Mountain and Mackenzie’s Mission (Joe’s story) so I wasn’t aware of its origins.  That doesn’t matter.  I would still be unashamed to sit on the bus with this book be it with a sappy M&B cover, or the tartan monstrosity that I've got (pic above).  It is one of the best romance books that I’ve read in a long time.  Once I finished this volume I immediately searched for the other title in the series.

This book is a fantastic start to what is a wonderful series.  In future books you follow the stories of Joe (Mackenzie’s Mission), Zane (Mackenzie’s Pleasure), Maris (Mackenzie’s Magic) and even Chance has his own story (A Game of Chance).

There are audio books for this series available ( and CD), however paperback copies of the books are hard to come across.  I stumbled upon mine at a local second hand bookshop – and managed to find the other three there as well over a 2 year period.  Amazon and Book Depository may have a few left on occasion, but you have to get in quick or they'll be gone ASAP.

If you are addicted to romance books, or are a fan of Linda Howard's other titles, then I recommend that you try this book.  Great for the bus or train, or even a lunch hour escape.

August 19, 2012

A Kaylin Neya desktop pretty

Hi again!  Can't wait till Cast in Peril is released next month.  I've been re-reading the series and just made a desktop for Kaylin Neya.
1900x1200 750kb

Hope you like it.  Leave a comment to let me know. Cheers.

Scent of Danger a Delight!

Available @AMAZON
Scent of Danger
Andrea Kane
Orig. Pub. Feb 2003
Re-issue Dec 2006

Back cover

When Dylan Newport, a high-powered attorney for the company that manufactures C'est Moi -- the revolutionary fragrance that makes women irresistible to men -- finds his boss, Carson Brooks, shot and nearly dead, he sets out to fulfill what may be the billionaire CEO's last wish: to find out whether a business deal he made twenty-eight years ago to start his company also resulted in his fathering a child.
Dylan's search leads him to Sabrina Radcliffe, a brilliant management consultant who is shocked to learn her father's identity. Yet when she meets Carson face-to-face, there's an instant connection. His appointing her interim CEO is the opportunity of a lifetime, until she becomes the target of his enemies. As suspects -- and victims -- begin to pile up, Sabrina turns to Dylan and finds that their own perfect chemistry is kindling into soul-deep desire. But first they must confront an elusive adversary intent on destroying everything -- and everyone -- they cherish.

This is the first book I had ever read by Andrea Kane, and it left me wanting more.  It’s rare these days when an author can finish a book and still leave you wanting more.  I used to feel that way about LKH, but now when the library gets a new Andrea Kane I’m there baby!

Scent of Danger is a romantic suspense novel that delves into the cut throat world of business.  In a nutshell, it revolves around Dylan Newport, a high-powered attorney, who finds his boss, Carson Brooks, shot and almost dead, and he sets out on what might be his bosses last wish: to find his biological child.  His search leads him to Sabrina Radcliffe, a beautiful and brilliant management consultant who is shocked to learn her father’s identity.  Yet when Dylan takes her back for a face-to-face with Carson, there is an instant connection between father and daughter.  When Carson appoints her interim CEO she becomes the target of his enemies.  As suspects – and victims – pile up, Sabrina turns to Dylan and finds that their own chemistry is perfect, kindling into soul-deep desire.  But first they must confront an elusive adversary intent on destroying everything.

This book took almost no time to get through.  Andrea Kane dragged me under her spell and I was lost in the world of Dylan and Sabrina.  It isn’t as gritty or edgy as Twisted, but still it is a great ride as you try to uncover the identity of the killer.  Now, although this book isn’t a demanding read, you do have to pay attention to the who’s and what’s so that you can follow the underlying subtext.

I loved Dylan and Sabrina’s relationship.  Even more was the interaction between Carson and Sabrina’s mother.  Having been an AI (artificial insemination) baby, Sabrina’s parents have never met.  It was nice to see them as supportive of each other, and Sabrina.  I’m not sure it would work like this in real life, but that’s why we have books isn’t it :-D

If you liked Kay Hooper’s Noah Bishop series, or Sharon Sala’s many books then this will be right up your alley.  Try not to read it before going to sleep – it’s not conducive to a good night’s sleep – as you’ll have to stay up to finish it.

Remember the tissues when you read Tallchief

Dinah McCall

Mass Market paperback 1997
HarperTorch US cover

Back cover

A Dream... or a Nightmare?

Ever since the night Morgan Tallchief lost the only woman he would ever love, he
has struggled to seal away the past.  But now Kathleen Ryder is back in his life - 
still pursued by the deadly secrets that forced her to flee before.  And even though
Morgan swears to protect her, he is helpless against his own rekindled passion.

Kathleen has never forgotten the achingly sweet hunger that bound them together
years ago.  Now, still on the run, all she dares ask is that Morgan keep her safe - 
never expecting that he has the power to breathe life-giving fire to an ember that has
grown cold.

Cover I have

Written by Sharon Sala under her pseudonym Dinah McCall, this is the heart-wrenching story of Morgan Tallchief, and how a ghost from his past comes back into his life.

At eighteen, Morgan was on top of the world.  With only two weeks until he graduated, an athletic scholarship in the works, and his beautiful and shy girlfriend, Kathleen Ryder by his side.  All that ends in an instant the night her house explodes... with her in it.  Grief stricken and numbed by his loss, Morgan turns his back on school and running, joining the navy - leaving his heart behind in the grave of his love.

Now, 16 years later Morgan is out of the navy and working as a successful artist when out of the blue he finds his lost love Kathleen standing on his doorstep.  Not only is Kathleen alive {shock...horror!}, but she has also brought a piece of their past with her... their daughter Trisha.  

Hidden by the FBI in Witness Protection (with her parents) since she was 14, Kathleen is now a single parent with a killer on her trail.  Her father's testimony was only part of the reason their family hid.  Unbeknownst to her, he held a little something back from the FBI - and now the bad guys want it.  With no other options, she packs up her daughter, and seeks out the one man who can help her.  But the reunion of the long lost lovers doesn't quite go as Kathleen expected, and while both of them get some good verbal hits before they call a truce for the moment Morgan is wary of her return.  Just what will it take to convince Morgan that she didn’t want to leave him all those years ago?

This book is a real tearjerker at times.  I enjoy most of Sharon Sala’s books, but this is truly one of her best.  Morgan is a man who never got over the death of his love, and Kathleen is a strong woman who has never forgotten her high school sweetheart.  The author brings them together in a wonderful way, making readers root for the success of their reunion. The addition of Trisha, their daughter, and the closure that this brings to Morgan is lovely.  I wished for a longer book, but the world is well developed, and their back-story well fleshed out.  You care about these characters, but the only criticism that I do have is that the ‘bad guy’ responsible for her flight back to Morgan doesn’t seem right.  He is the son of the man her father testified against, and his desperation to get back a piece of evidence is strange (although if someone the account details to millions stashed overseas I suppose you’d want it too J).  His demise is wonderfully appropriate, and as a reader, you just can’t wait for it.

This is a standalone book with no others being written about the Tallchief family, but that doesn’t matter because I didn’t really want to know about any of the others.  

Death of a Domestic Diva

Death of a Domestic Diva
A Toadfern Mystery Bk 1
Sharon Short

Back Cover
Need something troublesome and unsightly eliminated permanently?
Call Josie Toadfern!
There is no stain on Earth that laundromat owner Josie Toadfern can't conquer, and she's offered to share her expertise on world famous domestic doyenne Tyra Grimes's TV show. No one is more shocked than Josie herself when the Great Grimes shows up in Paradise, Ohio, to tape a segment in Josie's teeny-weeny hometown. But rapidly spreading rumors of the insufferable icon's immoral -- and quite possibly illegal -- carryings-on have sparked Josie's curiosity, and her uninvited sorting through Grimes's dirty laundry is exposing all manner of dastardly doings -- from mischief all the way to murder. And the irrepressible Toadfern soon realizes it will take more than lemon juice to make this lethal stain come out in the wash.

Although the title enticed me to purchase this book, it really didn’t live up to my expectations.  Sharon Short has tried to cram a lot of interactions with too many people in this first instalment of her Toadfern Mystery series, and the result is a book that seems to be incapable of following a linear storyline.  We jump from person to person, listening to them whine, bitch, insult and yell at our heroine, Josie Toadfern.  Unfortunately, her insatiable curiosity turns her into a doormat, incapable of telling people where to stuff it when they just mow all over her feelings (or take over her apartment).  She is not the most confident person, and I get the feeling that there should have been a more backstory in there as some of the cruel comments stem from years ago, especially from the Police Chief, John Worthy.  Her boyfriend, Owen, seems to be sweet enough, but he too just ignores her at times, or just avoids her.

Maybe I wasn't in the right frame of mind while reading it, but if I try another of these books, and that’s a big if, it’ll be from the library.  This book will appeal to you if you enjoy Roberta Isleib, Kathryn Lilley or Laura Childs cosy mysteries, but I think that you’ll have the same reservations I have about buying this series.