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review 2020-06-08 01:51
Review: Alpha Night by Nalini Singh
Alpha Night - Nalini Singh

Reviewed for Wit and Sin



There is simply no series like Psy-Changeling/Psy-Changeling Trinity. Nalini Singh has created such a vast, complex, unique, wholly addictive world filled with memorable, endearing characters that every time I start one of the books I know I’m in for a treat. Alpha Night is no exception. I was so hooked by Selenka and Ethan’s story that I stayed up until I couldn’t keep my eyes open, only to finish the book once I woke up in the morning.

Selenka Durev is the alpha of the BlackEdge wolf pack. She’s strong, disciplined, and deeply caring in a way only an alpha can be. She was raised by loving grandparents, but carries emotional wounds from her parents’ actions. Ethan Night is an Arrow raised in darkness. Ethan was held captive by a ruthless Psy Councilor since childhood and even though he has been freed and joined the Arrow squad, he still lives in a grey fog, detached and unfeeling. That is, until he runs into Selenka and the mating bond crashes through them both almost instantly.

Mating at first sight is the stuff of fairytales and soap operas. Yet somehow it happened and Selenka is fascinated by the sexy, remote Psy who calls to her like no one else ever has. And Ethan is equally taken with the stunning and strong alpha who awakens something in him he’s been searching for. I wasn’t sure when I began the book how I’d like the concept of mating at first sight, but I never should have doubted Ms. Singh. Ethan and Selenka’s connection is electric – bold and jagged and beautiful from the start. I loved how they came together, how the instant mating played out and the reasons behind it. Selenka and Ethan were so perfectly suited and had such fantastic chemistry that I was swept away by their love story – it’s both sexy and heartwarming. Their bond helps Ethan’s true nature come out: the protector, the giver, the deeply wounded man with a kind heart. He and Selenka are lethal predators, but the balance with how warm and loving they are endeared them to me.

However, just because it’s clear Ethan and Selenka are perfect together doesn’t mean it’s smooth sailing for them. Ethan is convinced he’s damaged and there’s a surging power in him he’s holding back, a howling madness he’s sure will turn him into a destructive force of nature. I loved watching the layers of Ethan’s character and powers be revealed throughout the course of the story. The proverbial ticking time bomb in his head added intensity, as did the danger from outside BlackEdge he and Selenka faced. BlackEdge is facing a threat, but there’s another, far more deadly threat on the PsyNet. I can’t say much about either of these plotlines for fear of spoiling the story. The damage to the PsyNet is an ongoing storyline and watching beloved characters exhaust themselves and make hard choices to save the Psy both breaks my heart and has me hooked. And though Alpha Night doesn’t end on a cliffhanger in terms of the romance, the ending definitely had me on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what happens to the Psy.

Alpha Night is the fourth book in the Psy-Changeling Trinity series and fans of both this series and the original Psy-Changeling books will be delighted to revisit some of their favorite characters as well as learn more about the wonderful BlackEdge pack. Selenka and Ethan’s romance stands alone, but to fully enjoy the book I highly recommend being familiar with the world and having read the previous Psy-Changeling Trinity book, Wolf Rain, before starting this one. I loved every bit of Alpha Night. Nalini Singh continues to deliver strong, well-drawn, endearing characters and expands her world in fascinating ways. I cannot wait to see what she does next!

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.


Source: witandsin.blogspot.com/2020/06/review-alpha-night-by-nalini-singh.html
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review 2020-05-24 05:01
A Shift in the Sky - Suki Selborne A Shift in the Sky - Suki Selborne

Stares stonily.


Allow me to say that I loathe first person present with the fire of a thousand suns.

So much time spent on character interaction that world building was an afterthought. It was in space i guess but no idea what the ship(s) looked like, inside or out. Not much description of the characters either for that matter - she was red headed and curvy. He was tall and shifted into a lion. That's pretty much it.


Also, there was a section where it's the H's POV then mid-stream-of-conscious, it's the h's POV, then back again. No break, almost like the author stopped to do something else, forgot *who* she was writing, and just went from there, only to do it again half a page later. Did no-one proofread this? How was that missed?


Will I read anything else by the author? Based on this, not likely.

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review 2020-03-30 18:37
Golden in Death
Golden in Death - J.D. Robb

So for the 50th book in the series was slow to build. I know that readers have complained before about Robb just jumping in and throwing murders at us, but this one I have to say had a nice slow build and had us actually become invested in the victims. I also loved the backstory to what led to the murders. I also loved how Peabody was in this one. She's been working my nerves through several books now, but for once we get to see how smart Peabody is and how tough she's become. The main reason why I gave this four stars though is there is the usual stupid fight (well half fight) between Eve and Roarke. I also just started skipping over the sex scenes. I just don't care anymore and I hate the words "pour" now. Also Robb is still a bit focused on flowers/plants/trees from her latest stand alone as Nora Roberts that bled a bit over into this one. And for the love of all that is holy, let Eve and Roarke not talk about Eve's clothes for one book. I beg of you. A solid entry in the "In Death" series. 


"Golden in Death" follows Eve as she and Peabody investigate when a family pediatrician is found dead in his home. When Eve and others quickly realize that someone used a chemical agent to kill the dead man they worry that a bio-terrorist is on the loose. When Eve and Peabody link the next victim to the first, it all leads back to a school that where all that glittered, did not shine. 

Eve is Eve in this one. She and Roarke read a bit more subdued in this one though. Not a bad thing. They have a min-fight (that was beyond stupid since it's been an argument they have had before about money) but quickly get over it. I also can't anymore with Eve and now Roarke learning from a material arts master. I am sorry, I am a terrible person, every time I read about it I roll my eyes and snicker. This was a good showing of how thorough Eve is though. For once we don't have her experiencing nightmares or just instantly knowing who did it. We actually get to see her investigate (hallelujah) and what leads her to the guilty party(ies). 

Peabody was solid too and for once did not act like a psychopath. She had a great scene and smackdown of a terrible character in this one and I loved it. Usually she's sweetness and light and also kind of a dick about people who are not part of her "family".

We also get a showing of characters we haven't seen in a while, Louise and Charles. I was happy to see how they integrated into this one and I hope we get to see more of them in future installments. We of course have Summerset, Feeney, McNab, Harpo (Queen of Hair), Morris, Mira, Mr. Mira, Dickhead (I can't even remember his real name anymore), Callendar, etc. 


Kudos for once not having Eve and Nadine do their BS dance about exclusives. Frankly I did not miss Nadine and was glad she wasn't in this one. There are a few mentions of the Icove case and the movie, but blessfully it's not in our face like prior books. 

I did love the writing in this one and the look at the ugliness of school and what kids can do to each other. The flow was slow to start, it took a while to get going.


The setting of this one is New York in April 2061. We hear a lot about Spring, the smell of grass, flowers, etc. There's even a scene about a tree and I just did not care. I felt a little bit like I was reading Roberts last book, "Under Currents". Some of the science I kind of raised my eyebrow at. I don't know it seemed overly complicated. 

The ending in this one was really good. We don't get to hear the results, but we can guess. 

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review 2020-01-02 18:43
Aurora Blazing Jessie Mihalik
Aurora Blazing: A Novel (The Consortium Rebellion Book 2) - Jessie Mihalik

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.


Lady Bianca von Hasenberg still emotionally and physically deals with the trauma her first marriage caused. Now a widow, she works to help other girls and women through her network of spies and her technological skills. When her brother Ferdinand and the von Hasenberg heir disappears, she won't be patted on the head and told to stay home by her father or their Director of Security, Ian Bishop.

Ian shut down Bianca's flirting when he was her bodyguard and even now as the Director of Security, he still doesn't think he is worthy of her, but he can't stop his protective feelings for her. Bianca manages to get information he needs and she won't take no for an answer when it comes to rescuing her brother. Ian needs to rescue the heir, keep his own secrets, and never let Bianca know how deep his feelings really go.


Softly, he asked, “Why do you have to fight me on everything?”


Second in the Consortium Rebellion series, Aurora Blazing stars Bianca von Hasenberg, the sister of the heroine from the first book, Polaris Rising. The first book gave us glimpses of Bianca as she helped her sister and a few glimpses at the tension between Bianca and the Director of Security Ian Bishop. The author makes good on the tension and slow burn she hinted at in the first. Polaris Rising was a debut and one of the complaints I had was about the story needing a lot of fat trimmed, Aurora Blazing had none of those problems, the author did a great job shoring up the story and fulfilling on the promise I found in the first.


The Consortium series, so far, follows two main characters threads, one has readers following one of the three major ruling houses, the von Hasenbergs. Aurora Blazing is told solely from Bianca von Hasenbergs' point of view. The second is about soldiers that were part of the Genesis Project (soldiers who were experimented on to create “super” soldiers), Ian Bishop is hinted at being tied into that. These two threads are swirled into plot threads that involve the three ruling houses conspiring, maneuvering, and possibly going to war with each other for power and resources. This creates a fun, absorbing, and intriguing space opera/scifi ride.


I promise I won’t ever use any of your secrets against you,” I said quietly.


As I mentioned, the romance is a slow burn, as in you won't see the (soft) snap in the fraying rope between these two until around 50%; the space opera aspect controls more of the attention in this series with the romance being more of a very important secondary character. I loved the dynamic and tension between Bianca and Ian, I could feel the emotion bubbling underneath. For the most part, I enjoyed how the author didn't blatantly spell out Ian's emotions but towards the end of the story, when we're supposed to get the big payoff, I felt like things were rushed. The ending sex scenes also felt out of place, they felt graphic and jarring placed at the end because the preceding 90% of story had a different tone between the couple.


His gaze was scorching, his eyes hot with desire. “We are not done,” he said, his voice a low command.


Without Ian's point of view and more of a look into his background, I found Bianca to be the stronger of the two characters. Learning about her first marriage and how her health issues causes her to lie to her family, thus isolating her even further, was heartbreaking. It was immensely satisfying to watch her not gain emotional and mental strength from what was done to her but instead use the strength that she already had but had been a bit too young to mature to. The times she refused to back down because she knew she had the skills and know-how to get the information quicker than Ian made me cheer for her even harder.


I was engrossed in the first half of this story and while I was locked into the space opera plots, the romance was too rushed for a satisfying payoff. I would love if Bianca and Ian got a second book as I think their story definitely supports it and the series would benefit from it. I don't know if it is due to the first person pov structure but there were at times I felt like I was only getting half the story on some things, scenes felt left out, and more background was needed. Overall, though, I found this an amazing continuation of the series and the author has dangled threads (the leak in the von Hasenberg house, the war between the three houses, and Ferdinand and his romance with the daughter of an enemy house) that I'm fully on board and can't wait for the next in the series.

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review 2019-12-30 20:07
Needs the fat trimmed
Polaris Rising (Consortium Rebellion #1) - Jessie Mihalik

This definitely had a The League series by Sherrilyn Kenyon vibe, scifi/space opera/warring factions, if you liked that series, you'll want to give this one a go.

This was a debut and I felt like I could tell with how the overall story needed to be tightened up more. This was first person pov by the heroine Ada and while I enjoyed her voice and character, there was too much talk of going through the motions of menial tasks. 20-50% and around the 70% mark, my eyes glazed over a couple times. I just thought the fat needed to be trimmed and the story tightened up.

This was very much a first in the series with the world building and setting up of plot threads, like I said, I enjoyed Ada's character but her love interest, Loch, was only a pencil sketch to me. Not having his pov probably added to this but only hinting at and introducing the Genesis Project plot, instead of investing some time on it, kept me from fully knowing his character.

Ada and Loch spend a lot of time together and their attraction is very much a part of the story but at the same time, not really the focus. Their attraction and relationship never matured enough for me to feel it was solid and therefore wasn't very emotionally investing for me.

The strength here was the setting up of plot threads, warring Houses, modifying human DNA, faked death, political intrigue, teasing of future romance couples, and what, I'll intelligently, call space stuff/atmosphere.

The writing has a smoothness and, like I said, there are some intriguing threads set-up, that I'm on board for reading the second in the series.

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