Wolf Protector / Dangerous Protector / Unwanted Protector – Federal Paranormal Unit #1-3 by Milly Taiden

Wolf Protector

Erica Villa has a special talent which is one reason she works for the Federal Paranormal Unit, a specialised branch of the FBI, but in order to protect the team all abilities are kept secret.  When the team start to investigate a possible serial killer, Erica and her partner Trent Buchanan, find themselves working closer than they have before.

Trent has known that Erica is his mate for a long time but she has always pushed him away.  As her abilities start to take a toll on her well-being, Trent is determined that he and his wolf will not only protect her but will make her his. Can the pair stop the killer before another girl dies or will they die trying?

 

Dangerous Protector

Ten years ago Cynthia Vega walked out on James Brock after he proposed.  He never knew why.

Arriving at the scene of their latest case, the last person Brock ever expected to see was Cyn and to make things worse she has just become his boss.

Cyn had her reasons for leaving, still does, but seeing James again was harder than she thought. Working close to him is going to be near impossible but for both their sakes she needs to keep her distance. Brock has other ideas.  No way is he going to let his mate go again.

When Cyn’s cousin goes missing, Brock insists on joining her to unofficially investigate the disappearance.  Family secrets are hard to keep.  Can she expect Brock to understand and will he ever forgive her?

 

Unwanted Protector

Jane Donovan has keeping Tony Ramirez at a very long arms length for ten years and if he ever found out the truth she’s not sure he would ever forgive her.

Tony has had enough.  He knows deep down that Jane is his mate but something keeps telling him she is not.  When Jane disappears while on vacation Tony is determined to track her down and finally make her his.

Being kidnapped was not part of Jane’s original vacation plans, neither was finding the small girl who tugged at her heart strings and made her rethink her entire outlook.  Tony turning up to rescue her was also not in her plans.  When team members and family members start to arrive out of nowhere, Jane must face the truth and allow her relationship with Tony to take it’s natural course but when others intervene all could be lost.

REVIEW

I really enjoyed this series and loved the way the characters worked together and built their personalities over the course of the books.  It is highly recommended to read all three as the final book brings the whole story to a head and gives meaning to why the team has been worked the way it has.  All the couples are great and have very distinctive characteristics.  The mating of each couple is powerful and full of sex…be warned there is lots of sex in these books!

Besides the sex the story lines are very strong.  Starting with the investigation into a serial killer, then a missing family member who everyone believes is crazy, to finish with aliens.  They are well written and engaging and I will be reading more by this author in the future, probably the Paranormal Dating Agency Series

Mystery at Maplemead Castle – The Chapelwick Mysteries by Kitty French

Ghostbusting is never easy.  For Melody Bittersweet it is only made harder by her ex, Leo Dark, and her love/hate nemesis, Fletcher Gunn.

When the new owners of Maplemead Castle employ Melody’s special services she becomes embroiled in the lives of a trio of circus performers (and a lion!).  Trapeze artist, Britannia Lovell, is stuck with her husband and her lover in a repeating performance that has lasted a century. Melody and her ghostbusting team have to find out what is keeping the trio from moving on, but when Leo because bewitched by Britannia her job just gets a whole lot trickier.

Things are also heating up between Melody and Fletch, much to the disapproval of her friends and family.  What is a girl to do?

REVIEW

Hilarious! Melody is back on fine form in this second book in the series.

I think what I like most about Kitty French’s writing is that she is completely British.  The language that she uses is so familiar. Words such as bumholes, boffed and crappola make me feel right at home.

The comedy mixed with the romance mixed with the mystery makes for an entertaining and very enjoyable story.  I really want Melody and Fletch to work out but I’m not sure if the author will ever get them together due to their differences.  If only Fletch would open up his mind a bit and see Melody for the wonderful person she is and if only Melody would get over the fact that Fletch can be a dick sometimes!  The connection and understanding that Melody has for Leo during this mystery is lovely but I do think he deserved the little dig she gives him at the end about broken hearts.

The Fembots made an appearance but did not play as much of a part in this story and I’m not entirely sure I understand what their relationship with Leo is, either way they are no match for Marina and her spiked heels.

The only point I found slightly annoying about this particular story is the continual miss spelling of Britannia’s name.  Sometimes spelt Britannia and others Brittania.  I know it is a small point but it is something that should have been picked up during editing.

Brilliantly funny.  The antics of Melody, Marina and Artie just gets better.  Looking forward to reading the next, with the hope of a little more loving between Melody and Fletch.

The Pride of the King – Bold Women of the 18th Century #2 by Amanda Hughes

Lauren De Beauville always knew she was destined for adventure.  Growing up in New Orleans and living the early years of her life in a convent, Lauren’s life turned upside down when, at the age of 15, she was married off to an old English man.  A freak storm on her wedding day started a spiral of events that would lead Lauren on her restless adventures across the continent but always in the background one man would be directing her fate.

James St Clare, a trader of illegal merchandise, is not a man Lauren wants to be associated with but he appears at every turn. With his bunch of misfits onboard ‘The Pride of the King’, James and his crew must out-smart both the French and English when the threat of war breaks out. But when an unknown enemy sets its sights on destroying James and all he holds dear it is left to Lauren to find out who and put a stop to them before she loses everything she has come to love.

REVIEW

Intriguing story of love, adventure, betrayal and heartache.

Lauren finds herself in some of the most difficult and challenging situations for any young women no matter what the time period.  Life in the 18th Century is hard enough but when you find yourself on the outskirts it can be unbearable.  Moving from place to place, one minute living in high society and the next living off the streets fighting dogs for scraps, Lauren has nowhere to call home and no-one to call family.

James St Clare is an arrogant, unpleasant, yet oddly handsome man who tends to treat Lauren with contempt most of the time.  He keeps her at arm’s length but is always around when she finds herself in a bind.  He has his reasons and despite the secrets that exist between them they find that a connection is there none the less.

I was thoroughly captivated by the characters in this story.  Lauren is a head-strong young woman who will take life by the horns and swing it around until she finds herself dizzy with excitement. James is a fascinating character who despite his upbringing cares deeply for those on his crew and within his association. Heloise and Cornelius are absolutely fantastic, a mother and son duo, they take Lauren under their wing and treat her like a daughter/sister. The rest of the crew are brilliant with their different abilities and disabilities.

This is the first book I have read by this author and the story telling had me lost in a world of high society and street scum, wigs and patches, pirates and soldiers. A bond is formed with the characters and the emotions that unfold throughout the book had me on the verge of tears.

Highly recommended and will be reading more from this author in the future.

Pretty Lost Dolls – Pretty Little Dolls #2 by Ker Dukey, K. Webster

Benny misses his Dirty Doll.  Getting her back is his only priority.  With the help of Broken Doll, Benny seals her fate and she finds herself transported back to the cell of her nightmares…only they are no longer nightmares, this is real.

The torment is far worse this time than last. Now Jade knows what it means to be truly loved by a man, Dillon, she knows that what she will suffer at the hands of Benny is not love but a sick and twisted perversion.

Stronger, older and now a skilled detective, Jade must find a way to break free from the hell she is in and put an end to the monster that lurks in her dreams.

REVIEW

Dark, sinister and thrillingly good.  The concluding part of the ‘Pretty Little Dolls’ series is twisted in ways you can hardly imagine.  This book is far more graphically descriptive than the first and contains scenes of rape, torture and mutilation that some readers may find disturbing.

This story is written from a 3 person perspective – Jade, Benny and Dillon.

Jade finds herself back in the clutches of the psychotic Benny only this time he intends to punish her for running away.  Finding herself stronger and with more to live for this time round, Jade resists the urge to plunge in the state of denial that once worked well for her.  Now she embraces the pain, storing the rage to help her fight harder to rid herself of the monster once and for all.  Having the love of Dillon on her side gives her something to fight for and finding that she also has an unexpected new Doll in the attic makes her more determined than ever to get herself and the Dolls out.

Benny is one messed up character.  His obsession with Jade, his ‘Dirty Little Doll’, reaches new highs in this part of the story and he is out to punish anyone who dared to touch what is his. We find out a lot about Benny’s past and how he became the depraved monster that he is.  He retells stories of his youth.  His father’s perversions and his mother’s wicked punishments. Quite frankly it is surprising he can function at all in the normal society.  There is also a surprising twist that is revealed during the telling of Benny’s past.

Dillon is most definitely the hero of the hour.  He loves Jade for all her faults.  Everything she has been through has made her the woman she is today and nothing will prevent him from finding her and saving her from the monster in the dark.  Some monsters, however, can be closer than you think and a shocking surprise is in store for Dillon and Jade. I said in my review of the first book that I loved Dillon’s character and his relationship with Jade and this is reinforced in this book as the couple continue to seek out and destroy Benny.

I will warn you once again though, there are some very graphically written scenes when Jade is being held captive that may offend or disturb some people.  If you like dark, thrillers with your romance and are not squeamish or easily offended then you should enjoy the Pretty Little Dolls series.

Pretty Stolen Dolls – Pretty Little Dolls #1 by Ker Dukey, K. Webster

Jade made a mistake. She trusted a man who turned out to be a monster. Daddy had warned her but she let down her guard and now her and her sister are paying the price.

Benny loves his dolls, both the porcelain and the real.  He dresses them and makes up their faces but not hers. She is his ‘Dirty Little Doll’. She deserves no clothes, no make-up. But when she escapes, Benny finds his life just isn’t right and must get her back.

For eight years Jade has been searching for any clues that will lead to her abductor and to her sister.  Her life is closing in on her and she can feel him getting closer.  He wants her back and there is nothing she can do to stop him.

REVIEW

This is an amazingly dark and graphically descriptive story based on a man’s obsession with living dolls. Benny is a very disturbed character whose life revolves around his ‘Pretty Little Dolls’.  Jade’s life will forever be changed thanks to her encounter with him and his fascination for her.  She was held captive, abused and tortured for four years, naked and shamed at every opportunity. Wanting revenge is her only way of holding onto life without falling into the pit of despair.

This story is written in such a way that you don’t know if she is dreaming it all, if it is all in her head, or if he really is out to reclaim her.  Expect the unexpected at every turn.

I loved Dillon’s character and the romantic in me hoped for the HEA throughout this story despite the dark thriller aspect.  He is good for Jade and understands her better than anyone, my only hope is that it continues in the second book.

This is a two book series and the first one is left on a cliffhanger.

To Save a Sinner by Adele Clee

When Lucas Dempsey was banished to America by his father, following the murder of Lord Banbury, he never expected to come back.  Now, four years later, he enters the ballroom amidst gossip and speculation about his return.  Closing off his heart and emotions has been easy. He knows not to trust anyone but one women test his limits and threatens to pull down his well-built walls that have protected him.

Helena Ecclestone sees more in that handsome face and cold eyes than the man would want her too, she looks beyond the physical and seeks out the real man inside.  After a brief meeting and an over-heard conversation, she is convinced of his innocence and takes it upon herself to be his protector. Working together to uncover the truth brings the pair closer and walls begin to crumble on both sides.

REVIEW

Helena is a great character.  Although she is not deemed by society as beautiful she has never let this demean her in any way, in fact, she finds it almost comical when she is looked over for dancing in favour of her sister.  She spends most of her time reading and has gained a great deal of knowledge from this pursuit, which has also helped her to look beyond physical features and gain a persons true worth from their character.

Lucas Dempsey has a typical ‘man-done-wrong’ arrogance but he too sees beyond the physical and knows the true worth of Helena.  The attraction they have for each other isn’t instant but grows over the time they spend together. Lucas never believed he would find love mainly because he didn’t believe he would ever trust anyone enough but Helena shows him what trust and loyalty really looks like.

There are some interesting twists in this story that keeps you wondering.  I loved Lucas’ loyalty to Helena and even more the way Helena believed in his loyalty when the evidence before her eyes should tell her differently.  The connection between these two characters defies the social norms of the time and shows what true love can really be.

This story also introduces other characters within it who also have their own stories.  I will definitely be reading more by this author in the future.

Rook and Ronin: Complete Seven Book Series (Rook and Ronin Spinoff #1-4) by J.A. Huss

TRAGIC

Rook is alone, desperate and running.  Leaving behind an abusive relationship she follows the hand of fate and finds herself in the studio of Antoine Chaput. Becoming an erotic model for the famous photographer was never in her plans but with the stunningly gorgeous Ronin directing her through it, how hard could it be?

MANIC

Following in the success of the TRAGIC contract, Rook is approached to be the girl of STURGIS, much to Ronin’s dismay.  In a fit of anger, Rook signs the deal only to find out that not only will she be painted nude by the full body-paint artist, Spencer Shrike, she will also be filmed, for three months by a reality T.V. crew, for Shrike’s Bikes. Ronin has issues of his own to deal with and, with the modelling deal in full swing, pressure is put on there fragile relationship.  When the past starts catching up with them can Rook and Ronin survive the challenges that face them?

PANIC

Rook dreams of being a film maker and wants to go to film school. Ronin wants a family of his own and is willing to wait for Rook but will she ever be ready.  Rook’s past is right on her doorstep and only the TEAM can help protect her.  Spencer, Ford and Ronin have been a Team since they all went to school together but an incident in the past has kept them apart.  Now they will have to work together again to protect Rook, but is their own past about to catch up with them?

SLACK & TAUT

Ford Aston wants to be left alone.  His infatuation with Rook needs to end or he knows he will do something both of them will regret.  Driving to LA on New’s Years Eve may be the worst mistake of his life but when fate drives him to meet a depressed and suicidal Ashleigh it maybe more than her life he is saving.

BOMB & GUNS

The love of Spencer’s life, Veronica Vaughn, is getting tired of her on/off relationship with Spencer, which for the past year has been more off than on.  Fed up with knowing that Spencer is dating other women, Ronnie decides her time has come to move on with her life.  Changing career, moving home and dating are all on her mission to get her life away from Spencer Shrike, if only her heart would join the plan.

Spencer Shrike has loved his Bombshell, Ronnie Vaughn, from the first moment he met her and keeping her at a distance is killing him.  Not wanting his past to effect her future, Spencer does everything he can to ensure her safety until all threats are contained, however even the most careful planning can have its flaws and, no matter how hard he tries, Ronnie could be in danger however he plays it.

The whole TEAM come together to conclude the journey that started with a lonely girl and ended with relationships that will span the tests of time.

 

REVIEW

This series is captivating from start to finish.  J.A. Huss has a way of bring characters to life in such a way that no matter how much you want to dislike them you can’t.  Rook is young but has had to grow up fast. Ronin knows the effects that an abusive relationship can cause and sees the pain in Rook from the beginning.  Although the first three books in this series are based mainly on Rook and Ronin their story would be nothing without the addition of the side characters – Spencer and Ronnie, Ford and Ashleigh, Elise and Antoine. The four spin-off stories are essential reading as, although they focus on Ford and Spencer, they still continue the story of the TEAM and all the problems that arose with Rook and their not-so legitimate backgrounds.

There were moments I just wanted to slap the whole lot of them but everything they did was done for a reason.  Secrets are rife throughout all the series but are also essential to the story and how it plays out for each character.  Their paths were destined to cross and each couple fits together perfectly.

There are some stories that you can’t wait to get to the end to read the happy ever after and then there are those that you want to continue on past the HEA into the rest of the their lives that follow, this was definitely a life following series.