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text 2016-11-18 06:09
Yeah, no
Unborn - Amber Lynn Natusch

Unborn pretty much exemplifies everything that I find unpleasant about paranormal fantasy; not sure why I finished it. First off, we have a lone woman, an exemplary special girl who has untapped powers surrounded by a whole bunch of dudes. Then said dudes spend all kinds of time treating other women like shit, and this is somehow a reflection on the women and not the dudes. Then, and this is my special favorite, most of these dudes are the main girl's brothers, but they persist in treating her like a sex object, and this is funny. Because incest is funny. Why are you being such a buzzkill? 


Oh, and it ends on a cliffhanger. I know, right? 


This is the sort of book that makes me appreciate this book's antecedents, stuff like Black Dagger Brotherhood and the Fever novels. I made some fun of those at the time, but actually the way those series navigated some seriously problematic shit was pretty deft. BDB has the whole dudes-only feel, but the banter is honestly amusing, and the whole thing ends up being an exploration of masculinity that doesn't have to hate on every woman but the protagonist. Fever, well, Morning turned the cliffhanger into an art form. Unborn does neither of these things well. 

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review 2016-09-11 18:26
Kindle Review
Boundary Crossed (Boundary Magic Book 1) - Melissa F. Olson

*Book source ~ Kindle First


There’s something strange about Allison “Lex” Luther. She has a difficult time dying. Ok, the dying part isn’t so difficult. It’s the staying dead that’s giving her problems. For some reason she can’t stay dead. Not necessarily a bad thing, but most definitely strange and it’s the reason why she suddenly ends up over her head in a magical world she never knew existed when she dies yet again while protecting her baby niece from the vampires (?!) kidnapping her. Vampires. Lex had no idea. But now she needs to learn all she can and asap before the bad guys go at her niece again.


Woo doggie! Just when you think there can’t be any other way to tell a story involving magic and vampires, along comes an author with a unique spin on the old standby. A boundary witch is something I’ve never heard of and it is some interesting shit. Lex has to learn her stuff on the fly and she does a decent job of it, but she’s still ass deep in vampires and the magical world and not a clear picture of what she can do or what’s expected of her by the larger community. Not to mention she needs to protect her magically gifted niece, all while keeping everything a secret from humans. Well, isn’t that a kick in the head? Well-written and edge-of-seat gripping, with only a few areas of stretching believability past the limits, I’m most definitely going to be reading the next book in this series.


Source: imavoraciousreader.blogspot.com/2016/09/kindle-review-boundary-crossed.html
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text 2016-07-07 01:21
Good, even intriguing but ... DNF
Boundary Crossed (Boundary Magic Book 1) - Melissa F. Olson

DNF -- not going to keep reading because switching from characters to root for to darker crap where it's okay to kill for your magic instruction because only small animals, mice, fish, etc. that predators would have killed anyway.  


Debated DNF the first time instructor squeezed a mouse dead so she could "sense" the death.  Was getting suspicious also headed into ultra-speshulness with potential love triangles and enslavements anyway.


Such a shame.  I loved the sample (which gave no indication M.C. was headed into dark magic territory).  Sample plus friend reviews had me getting the book -- I really had wanted to know what happened next in this world with these characters.  Writing, despite being Amazon published (47North), was decent but author couldn't hold up to the promise of the sample and then totally soured me on the story.

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text 2016-06-27 20:36
Reading progress update: I've read 1%.
Boundary Crossed (Boundary Magic Book 1) - Melissa F. Olson

I probably should read at least a bit of this one after Murder of Crows -- because I almost bought a later book in series and when went back to find first book it turns out I had already purchased.

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review 2015-11-20 03:30
Boundary Crossed (Melissa F. Olson)
Boundary Crossed (Boundary Magic Book 1) - Melissa F. Olson

I enjoyed Olson's previous urban fantasy series, Scarlett Bernard, so when I saw her releasing a new one I jumped on it. But of course I forgot about it, piled it up under so many to-read books. Until yesterday when on a whim (plus I was in my urban fantasy mood) I decided to finally pick this up. Well, Olson surely knew how to begin the first chapter, that's for sure...

The third time I died was early on a Monday morning, a week after Labor Day.

How could I NOT get intrigued??

The story opened with quite a bang. Allison Alexandra Luther (call her "Lex" not Allie) was working her third shift in a convenience store when she encountered a couple trying to buy baby diapers... and found out that the baby was her own niece, Charlie. Realizing that the couple has kidnapped Charlie, Lex tried to stop them, even got stabbed for her attempt. She succeeded but it also opened her self to a whole new world. Apparently the couple was vampires who wanted Charlie because she was a null (human who nullifies the magic within a certain space around them) and Lex herself was a witch.

For readers who read Scarlett Bernard would already be familiar with the null concept (Scarlet was a null herself). With additional witches and vampires, the world building was not exactly complicated. Having said that, Olson was still able to offer a new concept of witch: a boundary witch. I'm not going to spoil much, but it's a new type of witch with affinity for death essence ... and since Lex has only discovered her power, I can see her grown more ease and control over it. I seriously cannot wait to see more things that she can do with it. She already showed the potential of her power (one scene just creep the hell out of me) and I thought it would bring complications to her life, for sure.

I definitely thought that Olson had improved her writing skill. She paced the plot really well, combining the action-thrill of the threat towards Charlie's life, Lex learning about her magic (with the help of two witches from Clan Peller), Lex finding out more about the Old World rules, Lex teaming out with Vampire Quinn to find out who was responsible for Charlie's kidnapping attempt, with a little touch of budding romance near the end.

I liked that Olson kept that future romantic entanglement near the end because for me, Lex is not exactly at the place in her life to deal with it in the beginning. She still suffered from her time being out of the army, added with the death of her twin sister, Sam. Plus having a knowledge that she was a witch with dead blood was probably too much for one to take. I just hope that Olson doesn't fall to the trap of love-triangle for the next book though, since that what she did with Scarlet (despite the fact that I liked Scarlet's choice).

There might be a hint of a cross-over plot, since one character's name from Scarlet Bernard series was mentioned here (Jesse Cruz, a.k.a. Scarlet's detective partner). I'm quite intrigued to see how that plays out. All in all, this is a really good start of a new series in a familiar universe. I already have book two with me, and I might gobble it up this weekend ...

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