One month has passed since Muriel's encounter with the mysterious Hooded One; the night she nearly died. Her reoccurring, daily nightmares are making her feel weak and worse, shameful. She does not like being afraid of anything. The changes in Muriel are especially tough on her soulmate, fallen angel Auric. He will do anything to protect his love and help her get better.
I’m going to say this right up front: Snowballs in Hell is FULL of graphic sex. So much so, that I actually started skimming and forwarding through the scenes. Additionally, due to issues with her sexually-charged powers, Muriel must add another male into her and Auric’s bedroom. While I have no issues with threesomes (also note: this is not a true menáge situation), the way that the threesome came about really irritated me. Honestly, I admired Muriel’s stance on adding another to her existing love life, especially after waiting years for Mr. Right to come along. However, her soulmate felt it necessary to manipulate Muriel into adding another to their bedroom. The fact that Auric blatantly tricks her into the situation made me furious! If the author had instead allowed Muriel to accept her body's need for sex without the subterfuge, I would have enjoyed the storyline. But the over-the-top emphasis that Muriel would deny herself out of love, which lead to the secret sex plot, ruined it for me.
The overall storyline of discovering who is behind the attack that nearly killed Muriel was interesting; however the climatic scene and unveiling of said bad guys left me wanting a bit more. I love how kickass Muriel is, and when she takes charge of her own situations, she’s a wonderful heroine. Add in a touch of humor and sarcasm, and Muriel is one of the best UF characters. However, when she gets wishy-washy, she can be annoying. There was a bit too much focus on whether or not Muriel should sleep with another, but it did tie into the plot.
Rebecca Estrella provides a solid and consistent narration. Muriel’s voice is perfect. The array of male voices works for the story. Typically, I tend to enjoy a narrator more by the second or third book because of familiarity. However, the initial sex scenes felt robotic. It sounded like Ms. Estrella was simply reading the scene as a matter of fact, rather than putting emotion into it. Ms. Estrella does a great job with the individual characters when they speak. Then, I actually started skipping the sex scenes, so I can’t say if that part got better.
In the end, the story behind Snowballs in Hell is pretty good. The campiness makes the story fun. However, there was too much graphic sex for my tastes. And the subterfuge used to get Muriel to accept that her body needs lots of sex with multiple partners really ticked me off. I would have given it a B, but because of that, B- because it was an issue for me.
Review copy provided by Tantor Audio
War is coming and all the kingdoms must choose a side. Isian decides to make an alliance with their long-time enemies in order to defeat a common enemy. So Isian sends a proposal, offering their daughter to the prince, in order to ensure an alliance. Princess Gabrielle and her new husband, Prince Alec must learn to work together and trust each other in order to triumph in the approaching war. With a mysterious beast attacking the kingdom, their lives in danger, and overcoming their vast cultural differences, will love grow despite their trials?
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Source: I received this book for free from the publisher. My opinions are my own.
This is Book #2 of 3 in the "Isian" series, but could easily be read as a standalone. Number 3 is not yet available on audio.
In my review for Book #1, I wrote how that book didn't really appeal to me until the final third of the story. Thankfully, this book was more enjoyable almost from the start. I still feel that there isn't anything outstanding here, and that the dialog often seems too contemporary, but it was a sweet fantasy romance.
I have tagged the book with diversity, as Gabrielle and her family are POC and their country has different customs & culture.
Manhattan’s It Girl, Natalie Grayson, has it all: she’s a hot exec at a leading advertising firm, known industry-wide for her challenging and edgy campaigns. She’s got a large circle of friends, a family that loves her dearly, and her dance card is always full with handsome eligible bachelors. What else could a modern gal-about-town wish for? The answer, of course, is...cheese.
Natalie’s favorite part of each week is spending Saturday morning at the Union Square Farmer’s Market, where she indulges her love of all things triple cream. Her favorite booth also indulges her love of all things handsome. Oscar Mendoza, owner of the Bailey Falls Creamery and purveyor of the finest artisanal cheeses the Hudson Valley has to offer, is tall, dark, mysterious, and a bit oblivious. Or so she thinks. But that doesn’t stop Natalie from fantasizing about the size of his, ahem, milk can.
Romance is churning, passion is burning, and something incredible is rising to the top. Could it be...love?
This book just didn't work well for me. It is funny and sexy and I loved the farming parts.
The romance felt like good sex rather than love. There was no being a safe place for the other person. There was no really getting to know each other.
The heroine seemed shallow and the hero stayed reserved in key ways. The hero seemed to grow a bit but not the heroine.
However, it was the author's note that really hurt the book for me. It said she went to write a book where the heroine just loved her plus sized body. And that is true but she was also abused for it earlier and had created a kind of if you can't beat them join them objectification of men that never sat right.
That said I did go ahead and buy the first book in the series because that couple looked interesting
I was given this book for my honest review. So, there you have it.