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review 2018-12-26 20:22
Dark Sentinel
Dark Sentinel - Christine Feehan
 
Carpathians, Book 28

I Picked Up This Book Because: Continue the series

The Characters:

Lorraine Peters:
Andor Katona:


The Story:

This story just pretty much moves along the series. Nothing spectacular happens. Lorraine and Andor seem like a good match. Whichever Malanov is still looking wants his woman back. His woman belongs to one of the other ancients though so good luck with that. The story was well written and very detailed as usual but like I said nothing spectacular.


The Random Thoughts:



The Score Card:

description

3 Stars
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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-11-15 20:03
October 2018 — A Wrap-Up

 

Originally published at midureads.wordpress.com on November 15, 2018.

 

 

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An Unkindness of Magicians by Kat Howard

 

This book surprised me and in a pleasant way. Having never read anything by Ms. Howard, I didn't really know what to expect. What I discovered was good UF with half decent world-building. It had shades of the movie Now You Can See Me  only the magic in the book wasn't an illusion.

 

We are introduced to the major players almost immediately. They each have their motivations and that was completely okay. The world-building should have been better because as far as I can see, this book is a standalone. Even if it is to be the first in a series, then it would need to be immersive enough for readers to continue with the sequel. I think it mostly does that.

 

 

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The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells

 

Wow! I mean I tried reading The War of the Worlds and failed miserably. If you can make a novel about an alien conquest sound boring, then there isn't much hope that I'd ever like anything you'd write. While playing Book Bingo, I landed on a category that fit this book beautifully. So, I decided to give Mr. Wells another go.

 

I am so glad that I did! Suspense colors the atmosphere in the story and there is a stench of violence waiting to happen. Why don't scientists ever learn? I kept cringing every time the humans faced the monsters (Moreau could give Frankenstein a run for the money)! Some were near misses and some events just foreshadowed the darkness that was to come.

 

The edition I read also came with a summary of H. G. Wells' life history. He had been involved in the formation of League of Nations. Cool!

 

 

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Some Girls Bite by Chloe Neill

 

This book had issues similar to that I highlighted in the review of Kat Howard's book. Say, vampires do exist and they decide to come out. Won't there be a political upheaval to makes all other upheavals look silly? Nothing like that happened in this book.

 

Meritt caught my interest because she refused to be grateful for being turned into a bloodsucking parasite. She also clashed with the authorities regularly and I liked that she wasn't ready to give in to her attraction towards the head vampire just yet. Her troubled relationship with her gold-digger and nouveau riche parents cemented her authenticity as a person. As did her bonds with her bff and grandfather. What detracted from the believability factor was how she rebelled against her new life and yet gave up so easily on her old one. What of her dissertation? What about going back to school?

 

What did bug me was the identity of the person having humans killed by her minions. As far as twists go, this one was just all right.

 

Even so, I want to read the next one in the series before I decide if I will continue with the rest.

 

 

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The Dirt on Ninth Grave by Darynda Jones

 

The humor in these books is always a winner. Consider the two quotes below:

 

3

 

4

 

But what I liked, even more, was that the series took a break from the disaster it had become. In case, you haven't yet read the last book or my review of it it was horrible. The author dropped a doozy of a deus ex machina on us. Then she left the readers with a huge cliffhanger that took us back to the prehistoric age (not literally)!

Guess what though? The last part did wonders for the book! I could reconnect with Charley without the usual over-the-top complications. The world was still about to end, but that wasn't going to happen just then. Charley did spend the whole book lusting after her husband even if she didn't know who he was. But that is typical behavior for her.

 

I also fell in love with Cookie all over again after reading this book. The woman has a life of her own, a daughter, and a husband. Yet she put everything on hold to come be with an amnesiac Charley. Even though she can't act worth a damn and kept slipping up and calling Charley by her real name. Cookie rocks! 

 

 

Bring on the next book!

 

 

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A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin

Another book that I wish had read a long time ago. Now, I don't appreciate it the way it is meant to be lauded. Firstly, since it is by a female author writing epic fantasy. Yaaaaay! Then because the protagonist isn't white and male, but colored and male. Okay, this deserves a smaller yaaay. Even so, it is still a win.

 

What I wasn't a fan of was the writing style. It felt stilted and kept me from devouring the book in my usual way. Of course, the fact that I have read my fill of epic fantasy might have something to do with it. Although, this book wasn't much concerned with the affairs of the world. It focused on a character's solo journey to get rid of the darkness that he had called from another world.

 

So, I'll reserve the final verdict until I have read the next book in the series.

 

 

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Everwild by Neal Shusterman

 

I can never understand how a children's book can scare the pants off me when so many horror novels have failed to do that! Similarly, I survived watching Jessica Jones being mentally — and otherwise — raped by Killgrave repeatedly. And yet, I have to force myself to sit through one episode of A Series of Unfortunate Events!

 

The idea of kids being in control is a very scary one because they can be very cruel. At times, they won't even realize the extent of damage they are leaving on another kid's psyche. The good thing about kids managing their affairs is that they can take highly complicated concepts of morality and simplify them.

 

I had a great time reading this book for both those reasons. Can't wait to read the next one!

 

 

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Dark Crime by Christine Feehan

 

Have mostly given up on this series ever being anything but cheesy, if I ever thought so in the first place. This novella was a good surprise though. Instead of the swooning heroines, we were shown someone who could fight and hold her own. She was also the one who kept the vampires and their minions at bay while hubby went to ground.

 

Yeah, she was forced into the whole Carpathian mating for life ritual by her husband-to-be. And yes, she couldn't live without him as soon as he arrived at the scene. Little improvements, see?

 

 

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Dead Beat by Jim Butcher

 

The humor was on point, as usual. Look below for a crack or two:

 

1

 

 

2

 

The relationship between Harry and his brother is slowly developing. By that, I mean they talked to each other about real stuff, like Thomas being thirsty all the time.

 

Susan was awesome!

 

The rest was pretty much as it always is:

 

Harry was trying to save a woman's life.

 

Harry couldn't hit women, even ones bent on killing him.

 

Harry defeated a threat that he couldn't possibly defeat.

 

Harry saves an adorable character who learns how to stand up for themselves and others.

 

Harry is hit with threats from all directions and lives to tell the tale.

 

 

So, this was my October in reading. How was yours?

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review 2018-09-07 11:00
Release Week Revew! Dark Sentinel (Dark #32) Christine Feehan!
Dark Sentinel - Christine Feehan

 

 

In an explosive novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Christine Feehan, a human woman ignites the desire of her Carpathian lifemate--and of an ancient vampire with a score to settle.

 

After the devastating loss of her entire family, Lorraine Peters heads to the woods searching for peace of mind and anything to quell the anger in her soul. Instead, she stumbles upon a scene of horrific violence, as one man lies helpless in the face of three attackers.

 

Andor Katona's existence has been a harsh one, living for centuries as a monk in the Carpathian Mountains. Unable to find his lifemate, he almost welcomes his release from a colorless and unfeeling world at the hands of the vampire hunters who have mistaken him for their prey. That is, until a whirling ball of fury bursts onto the scene, determined to save him.

 

In one glimpse, in one breath, Andor recognizes Lorraine as his lifemate, but it will take more than their telepathic connection to convince her of their immortal bond. Lorraine is a lethal combination of cunning and courage. So much so that she captures the attention of a master vampire, one who has already lost what was once irreplaceable to him. One who will strike with deadly precision at Andor and his ancient Carpathian comrades in a war to end all wars. . .

 

 

The newest book in the world of the Carpathian is a spectacular read full of electrifying suspense, volatile action and carnal passion. Andor and Lorraine are two solid, enthralling characters that easily draw you into their story but it’s their exciting relationship that keeps readers glued to the pages from the very beginning. The relationship is a bit rocky because of the situation and their differences which causes some emotional turmoil, but like all lifemate romances, the magnetic attraction sizzles from their core and refuses to be denied.

 

The story starts off with some intense, thrilling excitement and continues to keeps on the edge with lots of fast paced, explosive action and anticipation building thrills. This novel flows smoothly from page to the next while the hunters go up against vampires that have a diabolical plan and seem to have formed an army. Surprising twists and turns keeps the characters on their toes and defeating this enemy may just take more hunters than they have.

 

I was unable to put Andor and Lorraine’s story down until I had read every last word of this spectacular Carpathian story, the world just keeps getting more fascinating and the author continues to wow readers with her creative imagination and wonderful world building. I especially love the flying carousel that she brought to vivid life and how lifelike the characters and thrilling danger is while I suspended in her world.

 

 

Author's Book Page - https://www.christinefeehan.com/darkbooks/dark_sentinel.php

 

 

Add Dark Sentinel to your shelves at:

 

Goodreads - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37457488-dark-sentinel

 

BookBub - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37457488-dark-sentinel

 

 

Dark Sentinel is the 32nd book in the Dark series

 

Goodreads - https://www.goodreads.com/series/41089-dark

 

Author - https://www.christinefeehan.com/darkbooks/index.php

 

Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/gp/bookseries/B00CJ8T1WE/ref=dp_st_0451490088

 

 

which includes -

 

1 Dark Prince
2 Dark Desire
3 Dark Gold
4 Dark Magic
5 Dark Challenge
6 Dark Fire
7 Dark Dream (in Dark Nights)
8 Dark Legend
9 Dark Guardian
10 Dark Symphony
11 Dark Descent (in Dark Nights)
12 Dark Melody
13 Dark Destiny
14 Hot Blooded (in Darkest at Dawn)
15 Dark Secret
16 Dark Demon
17 Dark Celebration
18 Dark Demon
19 Dark Curse
20 Dark Slayer
21 Dark Peril
22 Dark Predator
23 Dark Storm
24 Dark Lycan
25 Dark Wolf
26 Dark Blood
27 Dark Crime (Edge of Darkness)
28 Dark Ghost
29 Dark Promises
30 Dark Carousel
31 Dark Legacy
32 Dark Sentinel

 

 

in hardcover or ebook at:

 

Berkley - https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/562835/dark-sentinel-by-christine-feehan/9780451490087

 

B&N - https://bit.ly/2w0c0aZ


BaM - https://bit.ly/2MlnRuf


Amazon - https://amzn.to/2MF6Ms2


Amazon UK - https://amzn.to/2Ovbauu


Audible - https://adbl.co/2AZcvb2


Walmart - https://www.walmart.com/ip/Dark%20Sentinel/363108124


Kindle - https://amzn.to/2NLPmuT


Nook - http://bit.ly/2uuP2YH


iBook - https://apple.co/2uuWvqJ


Kobo - http://bit.ly/2Jf6d5T


GPlay - http://bit.ly/2NaSD5J

 

 

 

You can read chapter one at:

https://www.christinefeehan.com/darkbooks/dark_sentinel.php#excerpt

 

 

 

 

 

 

I live on the beautiful Northern California coast and draw much inspiration from the beauty around me. I've always been a writer, for as long as I remember. My sisters were forced to read all of my books from the time I could write a story on paper.

 

I love family. I love my brothers and sisters, my children, my grandchildren and my great grandchildren. My home was always full of kids and children give me so much joy.

 

I also love my "sisters of the heart", those friends who have supported me through my life, laughed with me, cried with me and loved me regardless of how crazy my life got. I am a strong supporter of women helping each other which is why I became a third degree black belt and taught self-defense to women who'd been abused.

 

I love people and dogs, good books and great coffee and I'm lucky to know just how blessed I am.

 

 

Website - http://www.christinefeehan.com/

 

Goodreads - https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6268.Christine_Feehan

 

BookBub - https://www.bookbub.com/authors/christine-feehan

 

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/christinefeehanauthor

 

Twitter - https://twitter.com/AuthorCFeehan

 

InstaGram - https://www.instagram.com/authorcfeehan/

 

Pintrest - http://www.pinterest.com/authorcfeehan/

 

 

 

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review 2018-08-24 07:30
Dark Prince: Get Some Aloe Vera For That Burning Desire
Dark Prince - Christine Feehan

Dark Prince really likes its male and female leads. Their names are Mikhail and Raven, and they are perfect for each other. I mean that in a factual rather than complimentary way. The book takes great pains to make them two halves of a whole, baking it into the premise of the magic system. The male vampires of the novel must find a lifemate to keep them from succumbing to their darkest urges, and just one person in the world will do.

 

Mikhail and Raven know they're in the throes of destiny right from the get-go. Raven's a human psychic vacationing in Romania when she hears Mikhail's angst via telepathy. Being a giving soul, she helps out, and their communication via direct thoughts conveniently puts their courtship pedal to the metal. Mikhail, a powerful noble Byronic hero type who doesn't take no for an answer, shows up at her tourist lodge in the middle of dinner and uses his mind-affecting powers to cow everyone while he literally carries Raven off to his pad.

 

If you're thinking this is as creepy as it reads, let me just say "uh-huh." Raven tries to resist, but can't because Mikhail is just so damn sexy. This is not from his mental commands -- he specifically mentally commands her a couple of times for other reasons, but Raven chooses not to shit a brick in absolute terror at this violation, and once she's made some protestations, falls in sweeping, all-consuming, dizzy-from-blood-loss love with him. Their banter is meant to ameliorate this power disparity (which it doesn't, really), and carry on in the tradition of heroines who find vampires irresistible despite their danger. But unlike Bram Stoker's blood-drinking-as-metaphor-for-sex, Dark Prince gets straight into sex and blood that is, um, about 75% consensual and 25% coercion. It's never rape, but a girl could use some pepper spray is what I'm saying.

 

Our hero and heroine then have earth-shaking throw-down gorilla sex for about the first half of the book. It's pretty well described the first time, which is good, because the next five times or so it says a lot of the same stuff. Everything is "silken skin" and "burning need," there's a lot of souls becoming one and manful "claiming her as his." To be fair, it's not all repetition: the stakes are upped a little bit each time from sex to sex & blood to lifemate ritual to the vampiric Embrace itself.

 

Oh, did I use a Vampire: The Masquerade term? Don't worry about it. Dark Prince is full of them. There's blood bonding, princes of vampires, sun lethargy, blood potency, lots of sleeping bodily in the earth like in the Protean discipline, and who knows what I've forgotten. To be fair, an entire generation of urban fantasy was influenced by White Wolf, so the author is not alone here. My own writing has gaming in its DNA, too. But for obvious reasons, I'll call out when a mainstream genre writer doesn't file off the serial numbers before reselling Chekov's gun.

 

There are some additional touches not in White Wolf - the weather literally gets worse with Mikhail's mood, the vampires have a fertility crisis and will die without their lifemates, and my personal favorite bit: Mikhail goes off in his own language now and then. (Honestly, I can't tell if it's made-up or just Romanian, but it added nicely to the world-building.)

 

Most of the book is sex, or flirting when the blood-bonded pair are too injured to have sex, or yearning whenever they are apart from each other for literally even a moment. This gets pretty worn, but around the second half of the book, a plot picks up involving vampire hunters and their mastermind bent on exterminating the last few Carpathians, the book's term for "good" vampires. Carpathians are established as vulnerable to bullets as well as the sun, so despite Mikhail's frequently-mentioned amazing powers, the antagonists are a pretty effective threat. It all comes together fine, but the purple prose wore me out about halfway through, so the dramatic heights of the end were not as climactic for me as the author probably intended. All in all, Dark Prince has few surprises, but as evidenced by its gazillion sequels, when your novel is primarily about vampire sex, the market value of surprises is pretty low.

 

I'd give this two stars, but I'm going to bump it to two and a half because of the research necessary to put together the Carpathian language. That doesn't grow on trees. As for who'd like it, if you thought the Mina/Dracula dynamic in that Francis Ford Coppola movie was cheeseball and you picked up this novel, I got nothin' but bad news for you. On the other hand, if you want a towering romance with mountain chateaus and that 19th-century Gothic vibe with lightning storms and noble savage blood-drinkers, Dark Prince tries hard to deliver. And if you just want vampire sex, which there ain't no shame in, you can fill in the other two and a half stars yourself.

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review 2018-06-23 01:28
Shadow Keeper - Christine Feehan

The third installment of the Shadow Riders series focuses on Giovanni Ferraro, the one who was shot and can’t travel through shadows, so his job has become the quintessential playboy in order to give his family the alibis they need to do their work. He hates it. It has caused him to become jaded and cynical because all of the women he meets only want his money or the publicity his family name can provide, never ever him. Sasha is a waitress in the Ferraro club in Chicago and she unfortunately overheard him tell his brothers and cousins about a game that is vulgar and demeaning. A game based on points earned for having women do certain things without being asked or told; they have to offer it freely or initiate it. The moment Giovanni sees that Sasha has overheard the rules of this game he doesn’t understand his reaction to her anger and judgement of him but the fact that she stands up to him in her own way snags his attention. When he later has to rescue her after she is assaulted by other customers, he whisks her away from the club and that starts the whirlwind relationship between the two. She doesn’t take his crap and she speaks her mind and she doesn’t trust why Giovanni seems to be pursuing her. They are both stubborn and strong willed. When he finds out she is working two full time jobs to pay for her brother’s medical care, he can’t help but admire and respect her more and more and he really wants to take care of her, though she tells him how she feels about that quite succinctly. Sasha has had it rough ever since her parents were killed in a car accident and her older brother suffered a severe brain injury. She knows she doesn’t belong in Giovanni’s world but she can’t help but be drawn to him and see beneath his public persona. When a stalker breaks into her apartment Giovani and the rest of the Ferraro family come to her aid and the conflict becomes more complex and intriguing. They have to work together to figure out who her stalker is and it isn’t a clear cut case to say the least. I loved their adventure. The plot was multifaceted and engaging. The characters were entertaining and strong and I loved coming back to the Ferraro family. The series is really standing out in the Feehan universe for me as one of my favorites for sure.

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