Book Review: Slither by Melody Steiner

Reviewer: AndreaSlither Melody Steiner

I received a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

The summary:

Her revenge is better served cold-blooded.

Elanor of Onyx, enslaved by the dragons who scorched her kin and country, is determined to escape her island prison.

When the changeling dragon, Adom, demands that Elanor come with him to the mainland on a secret mission, she sees the opportunity she’s been waiting for—a chance to exact her revenge. But when his actions take a surprising twist, Elanor begins to suspect that maybe things are not as they seem.

With a plot brewing against the mainland king, alliances are tested and Elanor discovers a secret that will forever change the way she views the slithering dragons—and herself.

The Review:

I’m going to let my geek flag fly for a minute. I love dragons. Dragons are the coolest mythical creature in my opinion. I mean, they fly, they are practically impervious to injury, they have cool spikey things on their heads and backs, AND they breathe fire. Think a unicorn could stand up to that? If you love dragons, too, you must read this novel. You’ll get more dragons than you can keep up with and each with their own “abilities”!

The plot of Slither is complex and complicated. This isn’t a cheesy read. Elanor finds herself knee deep in a twisted mystery with plenty of deceit and secrets. Set against a land where ancient dragons coexist with humans, the novel is almost like an alternate history. The medieval world of Trana could easily be part of Great Britain. Though there are hints of romance, it’s not a romance, and it doesn’t have the full-immersion of high fantasy.

This novel would have been perfect for me if there had been more romance. I so wanted more of Adom or even the hunky King Siles, but Elanor’s feelings for Adom run from wanting to hurt him to hurting for him. I kept waiting for the sigh-worthy moment, but unfortunately, I didn’t get it. At times, I had difficulty keeping up with the secrets and who was playing who, but it all works out with a great surprise at the end.

4.5 Stars

Book Review: Wicked Abyss by Kresley Cole

Reviewer: Andreawicked abyss

The Summary:

This fairy tale doesn’t end with a kiss… A spellbinding Immortals After Dark tale from #1 New York Times bestselling author Kresley Cole!

The terrifying king of hell…

As a boy, Abyssian “Sian” Infernas had his heart shattered by a treacherous fey beauty who died before he could exact vengeance. Millennia later, a curse has transformed him into a demonic monster–just as she’s been reincarnated. Sian captures the delicate but bold female, forcing her back to hell.

Meets his match.

Princess Calliope “Lila” Barbot’s people have hated and feared Abyssian and his alliance of monsters for eons. When the beastly demon imprisons her in his mystical castle, vowing revenge for betrayals she can’t remember, Lila makes her own vow: to bring down the wicked beast for good.

Can two adversaries share one happily-ever-after?

As Calliope turns hell inside out, the all-powerful Sian finds himself defenseless against his feelings for her. In turn, Lila reluctantly responds to the beast’s cleverness and gruff vulnerability. But when truths from a far distant past are revealed, can their tenuous bond withstand ages of deceit, a curse, and a looming supernatural war?

The Review:

Beautiful, bookish girl. Once-handsome man transformed to a monstrous creature.  Enchanted castle with a magic hand mirror. A deal to save the ones she loves. A countdown. Sound familiar? Yeah, I thought so, too.

I’m a big Kresley Cole fan. I’ve read nearly all of the IAD novels, and I mostly love them. This one was a little cheesy. I had no idea it would be a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, but I should’ve got a clue when the novel begins in Disney World. The heroine, Lila, works as a princess at WDW, and there are Disney Easter eggs throughout the novel. I have nothing against a good fairytale reworked; in fact, I’ve read a number of them, but I like to know that in advance. It took a few chapters for me to catch on, but then it was completely obvious. I’m not sure if Cole is trying to play off the recent resurgence in the story since Disney’s release of the movie or if she had the idea first. Either way, this novel is definitely a retelling.

Having said that, I did enjoy the read and devoured the book in a day, but don’t be fooled by the fairytale thing–this novel is very mature. Abyssian is the damaged hero with a score to settle, and considering he’s the master of Pandemonia (a hell-like dimension), that damage makes him lethally dangerous in a charming sort of way. Lila is that feisty female that is pretty standard to Cole’s novels. If you love paranormal as I do, you might want to check this one out.

4 Stars

Book Review: Duke with Benefits by Manda Collins

I received a copy of this novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

 

Publication date: June 27, 201733547390

Reviewer: Andrea

The Summary:

LADY + DUKE = TRUE LOVE?

Lady Daphne Forsyth is a brilliant mathematician with a burning passion for puzzles. When she learns that the library belonging to her benefactress houses the legendary Cameron Cipher—an encrypted message that, once solved, holds the key to great riches—Daphne is on the case. Unfortunately, her race to unlock the cipher’s code is continually thwarted by a deliciously handsome distraction she hadn’t counted on. . .and cannot resist.

Dalton Beauchamp, the Duke of Maitland, is curious as to why Daphne is spending so much time snooping around his aunt’s bookshelves. He’s even more intrigued by her bold yet calculating manner: She is unapologetic about her secret quest. . .and the fiery attraction that develops between them both. But how can they concentrate on solving a perplexing enigma once the prospect of true love enters the equation?

“Witty, sensual historical romance that will captivate readers.” —Romance Junkies

Duke with Benefits is the second in Manda Collins’ Studies in Scandal series set in Regency England.

 

The Review:

This is my second in the Scandal’s series, and I enjoyed it nearly as much as the first one. The great, and usually unusual, aspect of this series is that the novels actually have a plot. I hope that all four “bluestockings” have their own novels. I’ll read every one!

This novel centers around Daphne. Daphne knows everything there is to know about math and decoding, but she knows nothing about interacting with other people. Her blunt (to the point of rude–something I’ve been accused of more than once) speech is often funny and cringe-worthy. There were times when she seemed too ignorant, unbelievably so, though. She’s smart; she would know the common sayings, but I still enjoyed her character.

Dalton, the hunky Duke, is patient beyond patient with his socially awkward love. His character seemed a little underdeveloped to me. I would have liked to see more angst, a little more grime on him so to speak. He was awfully squeaky-clean. Here’s a guy who’s so honorable that he refuses take Daphne up on her indecent proposal–just seems a little unrealistic.

The plot was interesting, like the first in the series. The novel is a treasure hunt complete with clues and intrigue where Daphne will be forced to use her amazing talents. Unfortunately, the hunt ended too soon in my opinion.

Overall, I liked the novel but not quite as much as the first.

4 Stars