EJ Frost-Gabe’s Girl

Did I read every word of Gabe’s Girl on Vella? Yes. Did I stay up late on Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday nights so I could read the episodes at 12:01 am? Yes. Did I read this as soon as I got it? Also yes. Will I do the same thing with the next book? Well duh!

There are going to be spoilers for Teddy’s Boys in this review. Sorry, not sorry. I’ll try to keep them down, but it’s kinda hard to miss them.

So, Darwin has forced Gabe to publicly dump Teddy and date him. Teddy isn’t going to let this stand, but she has to figure out how this is going to happen. Meanwhile, Charlie is there, supporting Teddy and secretly speaking to Gabe. Charlie is going to help Teddy to get their boy back, no matter what, and all three of them can have their relationship together.

Teddy sneaks into Gabe’s room and finds out what she needs to do to break the deal that he made with Darwin. She gets to talk to him for a little while and figures out what she needs to do. She doesn’t tell Gabe too much, but he figures it out. Then she and Charlie create the engagement rings for the three of them, and Teddy goes to ask Gabe on a day when Darwin is there. The plan is that her greater claim of engagement of marriage will supersede the claim that Darwin has. So she asks, it works, and Darwin absolutely fucking loses it. I mean, not just loses it, but LOSES IT.

He loses it to the point that he fully manifests a firebird and tries to burn Gabe and Teddy to death. They are able to merge their magic and cover him in Earth and Water, and try to protect themselves. It mostly works. Gabe is pretty much unhurt, but Teddy does take a beating. But the plan works. Gabe is free of Darwin and engaged to Teddy and Charlie.

I didn’t think that there was anything that would make me like Darwin. I was totally set to despise him forever. But… Never say never. EJ did a great job of starting the redemption process on Darwin. We get to see a different side of him, a more vulnerable side of him. We don’t necessarily learn more about his backstory, but we get hints of it. I really want to find out more than just those hints. I think that we will probably get that in this next book, but I really can’t wait.

I really like Charlie in this one. I mean, I liked him before, but I think that he really came into his own in this one. He has become the steady rock that both Gabe and Teddy can lean on. Gabe and Teddy are both strong characters, but even the strongest person needs to have someone to lean on so that they can continue to be strong. He is just a great guy to have on your side.

Poor Gabe. He has gone through so much, and it is really obvious in this one. I’m so glad that he has Charlie and Teddy there to support and shield him.

Teddy is really getting stronger magically in this one. She’s doing a lot of research into various things, and is learning so much. I can’t wait to see what is going to happen with her.

The end knocked me over, and I can’t wait for the next book. I mean, damn.

OK, that’s all for this one. Go check it out! Happy reading!

EJ Frost-Blood Yellow

Today, we’re discussing the long awaited 2nd book in EJ’s Demonsongs series, Blood Yellow. I was so excited to see this one, and now I’m back in the same place with the 3rd book. Of course, I need Gabe’s Girl first, but at least that’s on Vella, so I can read it that way. Just as a warning, there will be spoilers for the last book, because the action picks up basically from where it left off. Well, 3 months later, but not a whole lot happened in that time. So, let’s get to it.

Tsara has spent the last 3 months feeling all kinds of not good ways. She banished Jou, which she felt was necessary, but then spent some really bad days after that. She’s just now starting to come out of it, but things are still not good. To compound it, the therians and vampires have called her in to act as a mediator. Toby, a therian who she was friendly with, has been killed, and in nasty ways. He was partially devoured. The shifters think it’s the vamps, the vamps say it’s not them. Both sides don’t want to go to war, so they are depending on Tsara to find the culprit. She really doesn’t want to. She just wants to go home, take care of her sick salamander, and live her life. Maybe she’ll dream about Jou, maybe she won’t. And the worst thing about that? She doesn’t know if she does or doesn’t want to dream about him.

Outside of all that, she’s about to meet a cousin she never knew. Her Romany grandmother kept her away from half of her family after Tsara’s parents died, and this cousin is on her mother’s side. It’s a new thing for Tsara, since she doesn’t really have any living family around her. It turns out that they’ve been only a little apart this whole time, and Tsara thinks that she could get to like this cousin. She also has best friends who are telling her that she could call her ex, Jou, so that she can get closure or maybe get back together.

I think that Jou and Tsara have even more chemistry this time around than they did before. I think that they are both more comfortable with who they are in themselves and who the other one is. A lot of the things that were problems for them before just aren’t this time around. Jou and Tsara have each grown in the time that they have been apart. That time wasn’t necessarily all that nice, especially for Jou, but growth did happen. They are both more accepting of each other, I think too.

When it comes to Jou, I think that he is giving a lot more than he did before. He’s willing to listen to Tsara more, and take her concerns into account, at least more than he did before, IMO. I think that’s good. I mean, he’s still pretty damned set on certain things, but he’s more willing to give Tsara time and to listen to her side of the story and her thoughts, and then take those things into account. He’s also more likely to actually talk. That doesn’t mean that there isn’t a lot of spicy bedroom, backyard, bathroom, alley, kitchen, etc, action, but that’s not just all it is.

I think that Tsara spent the time apart from Jou realizing the difference in having him there and having him not. When Jou isn’t there, her life is dull, cold, dusty, and just not it. Jou brings color and life to her life and makes her feel all the good things. On her part, she’s also taking more time to listen to Jou, to figure out what he wants, and what is going on in his life. And OMG, is there ever a lot of it.

I really can’t wait for the next book. The end of this one dropped my jaw.

OK, that’s all for today. Go check it out! Happy reading!

Claire Marta-The Yuletide King

The Yule season is rapidly approaching, and Claire Marta has given us an early present. The Yuletide King is a fairy tale, in the truest and most literal sense. The fae are involved in the book, so fairy tale. And it really has a fairy tale feel, in the sense that we usually use the term. There’s a lot of happiness, sadness, and angst going on.

The story starts with Lyra, who has a little bit of magic, but not a lot. Basically, she can make fireworks, and that’s it. Her village thinks that she is unlucky, and so they are going to sacrifice her to the beast, Krampus. They tie her to a stake and leave her out in the freezing cold. Willingly. They really want to ditch her.

Luckily for Lyra, Jack Frost stops by and rescues her. She’s barely alive by the time he gets her, so he takes her someplace where he knows that she will be safe, the Kingdom of King Nickalaus. Nick rescues her and takes her to warm her up and saves her life. Nick is strangely drawn to her, but he’s worried that she’s a spy.

Lyra is nursed back to health, and starts working in the castle, and makes friends. Then she’s mysteriously taken from her bed and left out in the middle of the woods at night, surrounded by wolves. Nick realizes what has happened, and rushes away to save her. After saving her, all kinds of sexy fun times happen. And Lyra becomes Nick’s mistress, much to the anger of most of the other women in the castle, especially Lady Estel, who is a massive bitch, BTW.

I really loved the feel of this story. Like I said, it feels like an old school fairy tale, something that Hans Christian Anderson or the Brothers Grimm would write, but with a happier ending than you would see out of either of those groups. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I really love Hans Christian Anderson and the Brothers Grimm, but if you look at the non-Disneyfied stories, they are a little gory and not necessarily a happy ending. But, I get some of the same feel from King as I do from those older stories. I don’t know if Claire purposely did that, or if it is me, or what, but there it is.

I like Lyra. She has a very sweet nature, she really wants to do what she can to help people, and she wants to be happy and have the people around her happy. She also wants to have somewhere she belongs and someone she belongs with. She thinks that maybe Nick can be that person and his kingdom that place.

Oh, Nick made me so mad sometimes. I mostly like him, but he occasionally just pisses me off to no end at all. I kinda wanted to smack him. I understand some of his actions during the book, and I can almost even understand why he did the things that pissed me off. Doesn’t mean that they didn’t piss me off. And I think that he maybe went a little further with certain things than he should’ve.

I would love to see more in this world, because I’m utterly fascinated by it.

Minette Moreau-Wicked Rage

Minette Moreau may sound like a new author to me and the blog, but she’s not. She’s actually a new pen name from Raisa Greywood. Minette is Raisa’s paranormal nom de plume, so if you go looking for the previous 2 Wicked Magic books, make sure that you are looking under the right name. But, we’re not here to talk about those books, we’re here to talk about the newest one, Wicked Rage. And check back later on this week to catch Raisa’s other release.

This is the 3rd book in the series, and it’s Rizan and Feather’s story. Feather is a half bear/half mage young woman, and Rizan is an ancient dragon, and brother to the current dragon king. And oh yeah, he’s Feather’s mate. But, he made a deal with everyone that he would let Feather go to college before they sealed their mating and their familiar bond. So far, all he really does is lurk around her to keep an eye on her. But the book starts out on Feather’s prom night, and she’s helping her best friend get ready. Feather isn’t going, for many reasons, but one of which is the fact that Rizan would do grievous bodily harm to any male touching Feather. Somehow, Rizan finds out how important prom night is as a milestone, so he surprises Feather at her house with a beautiful dress, jewelry, shoes, and a 1951 Jag. (BTW? Somehow=Feather’s parents)

That night, Feather and Rizan do alllllll the traditional prom activities, and it is magical, quite literally. Then it’s time for graduation and for Feather to leave. She’s leaving her tiny town in Arizona to go to college in England and Rizan is counting down the hours. She also suggests to Rizan that he figures out something to do while she’s at school for the next 5 years.

College isn’t all that Feather thought it would be, and there are troubles in the UK. Feather finds out about the problems, and moves to do something about it, but before she can, bad things happen.

Meanwhile, back in the US, Rizan has decided that he’s going to join the Army. He does, and joins two natured unit, headed by a kick ass tiger, who promptly kicks his dragon ass, which I loved altogether. A few weeks into training, he found out that his mate has disappeared. He goes to find her, along with a crack team.

Five years later, Feather is still missing, and Rizan is now counting down the days until his stint in the Army is done so that he can go search for her. He and his team have searched for her, but nothing yet.

I like Rizan. He’s got a really interesting journey through this. I think that the military was good for him. It knocked sense into him when no one else really had yet. Feather made some impressions on him, but Kali made more. I think that he really grew up, which yes, is weird to say about a dragon that has been alive for millennia and survived hundreds and hundreds of years in a hellscape, but that doesn’t change my opinion.

Feather is really smart, really powerful, and incredibly fierce. She has strong allies, apart from Rizan, and she did a lot in the big war. I think that some of that gave her a slightly lowered sense of personal danger. So far, between her own power and all of the powerful beings she knows and loves, there hasn’t really been anything that she can’t handle, so she feels like she can handle just about everything. Which, TBF, is also a trait of a teenager, and she’s only 18, no matter how much she’s been through and what she’s done. She just doesn’t have the same amount of life experience behind her. She has a lot of loss from the war, but there’s still a weird spot that she falls in.

Feather’s journey is a particularly painful one, and I teared up about it more than once. Raisa is occasionally mean to her characters. Well, I say occasionally… I’m not going to say that good things came out of the pain, because I think that it diminishes both the sheer level of pain she went through as well as the results thereof. I know that growth needs struggle and often pain and all, but I feel like it dishonors her suffering. Does that make sense? It does in my head, at least.

Anyway, that’s all for this one. You really should go pick it up and give it a read. Happy reading!

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