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review 2018-10-23 02:37
ARC Review: Adder And Willow (The Rowan Harbor Cycle #6) by Sam Burns
Adder And Willow - Sam Burns

This series just keeps getting better, with every new book the author releases.

Adder And Willow is the 6th book in the series, and the third book of the 2nd trilogy, in which we catch up with Fletcher and Conner, whose relationship is still growing.

Now Conner's mother and step-father are coming to visit, and Fletcher is dreading meeting them. Not because he doesn't want to meet his boyfriend's parents, but because he's a terrible liar, and he knows that he's no good at keeping secrets. And the supernatural parts of himself and Rowan Harbor must be kept secret from outsiders.

Fletcher is also having meetings with Oak, the Dryad, who have been working with Fletcher to continue the training his mother couldn't. It is during one of these meetings that Fletcher finds out something he may have already sort of known, but that might put his future with Conner in danger.

And, as if that isn't enough on his plate, he also stumbles across two strangers in a stranded car, a mother and son, who are intrinsically linked to Rowan Harbor.

I just adore this series. The characters are complex and fully fleshed out, and each one is so different. There is never any confusing one character with another, because they all have different personalities. Fletcher may be one of my favorites, because while he's timid to some extent, and not assertive, he has much more steel in his backbone than he realizes. 

Conner is still growing into his new powers (you'll have to read the previous book to find out about that), and he's going to be tested here.

What also stands out about the characters is how they're all connected - not only because of their supernatural powers, but also because they feel like family, and they treat each other that way. They stick together, they stick up for each other, and they work together for the common good. 

The book is alternately humorous and serious. There is action, there is danger, and there are sweet moments between Fletcher and Conner that really cement their relationship. 

This series cannot be read out of order - each subsequent book builds on its predecessor - however, each book does end in a satisfying way. There are no cliffhangers. 

The writing style of this author really works for me, and I flew through the pages. 

Recommended! 



** I received a free copy of this book from Signal Boost Promotions as part of this review tour, in exchange for an honest review. **

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review 2018-10-23 02:27
Book Review: Ripe: Letters by Alan Semrow
Ripe: Letters - Alan Semrow

Definitely not my usual fare, as this is non-fiction, written entirely in memoir-style short letters to the many men the author has met or seen over the course of learning about himself and who he is.

Each letter details a moment, a few days, a few weeks, in the life of the author, ruminating about encounters with men, some with whom he spent some time, and some he never even met, and learning about himself and life in general as he explores the intricacies of intimacy, friendships, relationships, and the difference between lust and love. 

Each letter, whether written to Dear Weekend Love or Dear Athlete or Dear Stallion or Dear Lobster Bisque, provides an honest look at what that particular person meant to the author, how each of these men influenced him in some way, no matter how long or short the encounter. 

Many times we're given hints at bedroom exploits that never become too explicit, but serve to strengthen the intimacy of each letter, as the author reflects back on the encounter. There's poignancy here, many, many times; there's an honest vulnerability, a hopefulness, a youthfulness, a promiscuous recklessness. There is humor, reflection, longing, learning. 

This probably won't appeal to everyone, but I found myself many times thinking back to my own youth, the choices I made, and the letters I might write. This book definitely makes you think. 


** I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review. **

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review 2018-10-23 00:42
Halloween Frost

Halloween Frost (Mythos Academy #1.5)Halloween Frost by Jennifer Estep



I didn't know anything about the world of Mythos Academy because I have never read the first installment but it sounds like the protagonist Gwen Frost, is training to be a kickass warrior. I like it a lot. I picked it up because it is near Halloween.
Gwen's friend wants to dress up and go trick or treating but their fun was lost on a monster and that is just how it is at Mythos Academy. Fight and kill as many of those things as possible. However, the one she has a crush on saves her, yet again. O be still my heart. Her sword, Vic, can talk and has a mouth on him. It was a gift from some god. I need to work out the details guys so don't @ me. It looks like their bags of treats was lost on someone playing a mean trick on them.

Source: www.goodreads.com/book/show/32516150-halloween-frost
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review 2018-10-22 21:21
Croc's Return (Bitten Point #1) by Eve Langlais
Croc's Return (Bitten Point Book 1) - Eve Langlais

 

This was a standard paranormal romance with a great world building but the characterizations could use some work. It was a quick read because it took all of two minutes to be immersed in the swampy Everglades and the town of Bitten Point. The hero, Caleb, has returned to his hometown after leaving really quickly one night four years ago and going into the military. After escaping the military, he recovered in one of Langlais' other series towns, before coming back. The heroine was Renata (Renny), high school sweetheart to Caleb until he just upped and left, leaving her with a parting gift that is 4 years old at the start of the book. Thankfully, it doesn't take Renny long to tell Caleb about Luke, so there is no big misunderstanding. There is "big, bad secret" that forced Caleb to leave BP - and that secret felt a little lazy from the get-go, moreso when Caleb gets truth via the POV of secondary character who he doesn't like but does trust. 

 

I loved the world and will probably give the other books in the series a try. The humor is great and the shifter animals are very different than the typical paranormal romance - Caleb is a crocodile shifter, his brother is a python shifter, Caleb's BFF is a panther, and there are bear shifters and gator shifters. Langlais takes time with her world-building, adding details to make the world make sense and yet mysterious and different from the real world (such as the reproductive rules/limits of inter-species coupling).

 

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review 2018-10-22 20:24
Wray by M.K. Eidem
Wray (Tornians Book 2) - M.K. Eidem

Far less typos than in the first book. :)

Although this is book two in the series, it takes place before Grim and tells us how Wray, who is the emperor, found his Empress and fell in love.
The beginning was dragging and a bit unbelievable. What was the chance of them crashing near a cave with both hot and cold water and surviving more than a week with only a few energy bars. Really? 
It also wasn't believable how quickly Kim got over being raped for two weeks. Yes, she had her reason to trust Wray but it was still far-fetched. 
The story told more about Tornian empire, the Goddess and the curse and all this information was really interesting. I liked how Kim found herself, got more independent, but she also annoyed me because of what she thought about her sister's fate and how she constantly stressed how much she wanted to be a better person. Wray wasn't as fascinating as a main character but I liked him. I even understood his reasons for lying at the beginning of the story.

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