Saturday, January 28, 2012

Book of the Week - Ink

Title: Ink
Author: Isabelle Rowan
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: 230 pages
Rating: 1 Quill
Tags: paranormal, vampire, contemporary, tattoos


Roman centurion Dominic drew his last human breath during the time of Hadrian. In the centuries since, he’s seen much of the world change around him, but the vampire finds himself held captive in Melbourne, Australia, by his fascination with young, passionate, fun-loving, and alivetattoo artist Michael Chapman. Unable to resist the lure of Michael’s beauty, Dominic finds himself entering the parlor to get a tattoo he knows will fade.

The attraction he feels only grows, and despite Dominic’s extreme reluctance to get involved with a human, he and Michael form a bond—a connection that all too soon attracts the attention of a dark specter from Dominic’s bloody past. Soon, a dangerous game of cat and mouse threatens not only the budding romance, but also their humanity.


First off, I must say I was not able to finish this book. I am having a hate on for Insta-love this week and I just couldn't deal with it. First of all, our vampire character is just "drawn" to our tattoo artist. Okay, that works. You can build on that. But then he just keeps making him forget until it doesn't work anymore. Then, even though our tattoo artist can't remember our vampire, he is drawn to our vampire. At some point during all this being drawn to each other they actually hang out for one night, in which our vampire almost gets incinerated cause he is an idiot and doesn't notice the sun is about to rise. Then, our vampire runs off and leaves our tattoo artist to his own devices and decides he want to commit suicide by sunlight. The idiocy continues until,a after knowing each other for maybe a week, our vampire turns our tattoo artist in a vampire. This is where I stopped reading.

I am not saying that no one could make me buy eternal love after a week but it was just not working for me in Ink. I will be finishing this book at some point because it was picked for me as a part of a challenge over at the M/M Romance group. I will try to finish it when I am in a good mood and haven't read any good vampire books recently (e.g. Sunset). Whenever I finish I will come back and let you guys know my final eval (maybe it redeems itself in the second half, who knows...).  Since this is currently a dnf (did not finish) for me I am awarding it 1 Quill. If I ever finish it and change my mind I will update this review.

If you want to read this book to try to prove me wrong or perhaps just absolutely love vampire insta love stories (legitimate reading choice even if it is not my own) or you know, whatever, you can find Ink for $6.99 at Dreamspinner Press. Also, if you loved this book (or hated it or somewhere in between), please comment. I'd love to hear what others thought. =)

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Just Because :D

Here is some pretty just because I feel like it!!

(click on this is a cute gif but for some reason won't play directly from the post)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Music Monday - Zac Brown Band

Howdy Folks!! Its Music Monday time once more and this time I am revealing my Texas Country girl roots and bringing you some fun Zac Brown Band. Hope you enjoy!!! =)

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Book of the Week - Sunset

Title: Pact Arcanum Book One - Sunset
Author: Arshad Ahsanuddin
Publisher: Smashwords
Length: 145,000 words
Rating: 4.5 Quills
Tags: paranormal, vampires, fantasy, law enforcement, musician, second love, spy, alternate world


By Day

Los Angeles, 2040. When the terrorist known as Medusa threatens to kill millions with a stolen nuclear bomb, Nick Jameson makes a fateful decision. He reveals himself on global television as a Daywalker – a vampire with a soul. To save Los Angeles, Nick exposes not only his own gifts but three separate cultures based on millennia-old magic. 

By Night

The three metahuman races exist in careful balance, working to maintain a fragile peace. Nick and his fellow Daywalkers successfully master their natural bloodlust. The Sentinels, armed with both magic and steel, repress their warlike instincts. And even some Nightwalkers, normally their natural enemies, have deserted the Court of Shadows to join the triple alliance. Nick Jameson is deeply involved with two such Nightwalkers – handsome Lorcan and powerful Rory. Both men love Nick. But neither can protect the new Ambassador to Humanity from the events he has set in motion.

By the Sword

Jeremy Harkness was lured into Medusa’s service under false pretenses. A loner with no one and nothing to cling to, he was willing to die for his cause. But the night Medusa tried to obliterate Los Angeles, Jeremy met Nick Jameson, triggering the onset of his own psychic gifts. For Jeremy is the third race of metahuman, a Sentinel, born to kill the Nightwalkers with no quarter asked or offered. And neither Medusa nor the Court of Shadows will settle for peace when they can make war…


Nick is forced to reveal not only his powers but the existence of supernatural beings to the whole world on national television in order to prevent a group of terrorists from blowing up a nuclear bomb. This is the start of this action packed story. In the end he befriends one of the terrorists, Jeremy, when it is revealed he is a latent sentinel and was just awakened. Sunset is a story that seems beyond categorizations. It is a fantasy novel filled with ancient vampires, power filled sentinels with genetic memory to kill those same vampires. It is a science fiction romp with space flying and futuristic weapons. It is an espionage thriller with layers of deceit and alliance that are ever shifting. And it is a romance in which you can never really decide who you want to win the final affections of our main characters. But more importantly, this was an engrossing and engaging read that I would highly recommend.

Arshad built a comprehensive world that you can just imagine yourself in as you read through the pages. And more importantly, he filled it with a cast of characters that you can't help but fall in love with. They are stupid and arrogant and do all the wrong things for all the right reasons but then they are caring and self-sacrificing and genuinely awesome. 

However, there were a few jarring moments. I was a bit confused and possibly overwhelmed by the romantic triangle (square?) with Rory, Lorcan and Jeremy all being in love with Nick. Rory and Lorcan's obsession with Nick did not seem to add to the story and just muddied the waters. Perhaps more with this plotline will be revealed later in the series and I will discover why it was absolutely necessary but as is I think the story would have been better without this strange arc. There were a few other minor details that pulled me out, such as it seemed that almost every one of the main characters used to be an internationally acclaimed musical artist. It wasn't bad, just odd. 

Nevertheless, despite these few jarring moments/plotlines I absolutely loved this book. It had the kind of in depth plot, world building and character development that is missing in a lot of books these days. 4.5 Quills.

You can find Sunset (Pact Arcanum #1) for $3.99 at Smashwords. So go out and read it!!!

Thursday, January 19, 2012


Update the First - My Blurb of the Week book was a wee bit longer than I realized and my week has been a wee bit busier than I anticipated so look out for this week's Blurb on Saturday (instead of today).

Update the Second - I am over on Paranormal Paradigms today so go check it out!

Update the Third - Have a HAPPY THURSDAY!!!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Internet Censorship???

Hi All!!

There has been a lot of hullabaloo lately about the SOPA/PIPA bills that are going through congress right now. While these bills purportedly protect the entertainment industry from piracy, many believe that this is a first step down a dark road of censorship for both the United States and the rest of the world and that the language is vague enough that it leaves room for many and varied abuses that go beyond the bills' intended purview.

I also know that there has been much argument going on lately in our particular corner of the world about pirating eBooks. Authors are up in arms, readers take sides. While this type of infringement is not the primary focus of these bills, it could be impacted by their passing.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Music Monday - Fun with Cellos Edition

I'm going to start a new thing....Music Monday. A bunch of cool authors and bloggers are going to link into it through the linky tool at the bottom. So, click and see everyone else's fun music and if you've got a blog of your a Music Monday post and add your link to the list!!!

With no further ado I give my current musical with Cellos. =)

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday First Kiss - Peace Part 2

Today's First Kiss is by request from Courtney. She won the customized ficbit during the 12 Days of Christmas Extravaganza and requested a follow up on Robbie and Jared from Peace, including their first public kiss. So if you haven't read Peace, just click on the link above and read it before you read what comes next. =)

Peace, Part 2

Jared sighed as the hot water flowed over his scarred body. The steaming water flowed over his once perfect skin. But the entire right side of his torso was a tangled mess of burn scars ever since the explosion that got him sent home from Iraq. Sometimes it seemed that he was just a tangled mess all around. He jumped at the slightest noises, he woke up screaming more nights than not and, worst of all, no matter how many times he allowed Robbie to hold him during the night he couldn’t bring himself to acknowledge it during the light of day.
It had been three weeks since that first night. After the third time Robbie had to hold him on the couch for him to go back to sleep, Robbie had nonchalantly offered Jared his bed. That way they would at least both end up on the bed, not the couch when Jared woke up from one of his flashbacks.
When the water finally ran cold, Jared got out of the shower and toweled off. He turned toward the steam fogged mirror and for just a second, in the blurry reflection, it almost seemed like he was looking at himself again. Strong, brave, a soldier. With another deep sigh he reached forward and wiped the steam off the mirror and looked at himself through the streaks of water left behind. He wasn’t strong or brave and he definitely wasn’t a soldier anymore.
Sometimes it felt like his skin wasn’t thick enough to hold him together anymore. Instead of being made of being made of bone and muscle and sinew it felt like he was held together by twigs and tattered cloth. Like the smallest breeze would rip him to pieces. The only time he felt real and solid was when Robbie held him. Sometimes it seemed that if Robbie weren’t there to hold him to this earth he would just come apart, float away and not even exist anymore.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Book of the Week - Holiday Matinee

Title: Holiday Matinee
Author: Elizabeth Lister
Publisher: MLR Press
Length: 21 pages
Rating: 3.5 Quills
Tags: bdsm, holiday, toys, contemporary, short


Jack Claridge has been dating Professor Michael Donovan for a couple of months. When Michael discovers that Jack has never seen The Nutcracker, he insists on purchasing expensive seats for a performance by the prestigious Winnipeg Ballet. During the production, Jack and Michael relive their initial encounter at the National Arts Centre and experience a resurgence of the intense feelings that brought them together. What begins as a relaxing afternoon at the theatre ends up as a passionate exchange at Michael's apartment involving some early Christmas gifts and an unexpected proposal.


This holiday short was written as a part of the MLR Press's Story a Day for the Holidays 2011 package. Jack and Michael have been dating for about two months and remember the first time they met as they attend a showing of the Nutcracker at the same location. They tease each other all through the show and then dinner. Then Michael gives Jack a few early Christmas presents for them to play with together.

This was short, hot little Christmas story. At about 12 pdf pages, it is difficult to really delve into any relationship. However, I found myself pleasantly brought along for the ride as Jack and Michael moved to the next stage of their relationship. I won't tell you how cause I wouldn't want to give away spoilers. ;) Just a slight warning to readers. There is a light bdsm aspect to this story, as our two MC's play with their toys. I will read just about anything as long as the authors sells it well within the given relationship (Elizabeth did) but I know that is something some readers feel strongly about avoiding. Overall, I enjoyed this holiday interlude. However, as I almost always say with stories this short, I wish I could have gotten to know Jack and Michael a little better. So I am giving the sexy story a solid 3.5 Quills. Go indulge yourself with one more holiday treat before the season is completely over. =)

You can find Holiday Matinee for $0.99 at MLR Press.

ETA: Your friendly neighborhood reviewer is sometimes at idiot. =) Apparently this story is a follow up with characters from the novella length story, The Crush. You can find this book for $5.99, also at MLR Press. I do not have the time to go and read this right now and re-review but hopefully when you read Holiday Matinee you will be curious to go back and see how the couple got together. So go forth and read my followers!!!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Groan, blerg, kersplat, and other onomatopoeias of patheticness

Hi All,
I am dismally ill and in the midst of exams so I must leave you without your Friday entertainment this week. If I am feeling better after exams are over (Saturday night) then perhaps I will have something for you on Sunday. In the mean time, drink lots of orange juice and don't touch strangers. =)

And just cause it made me feel better to look at pretty boys, I give you pretty boys to look at as well.

Now if this why I had a fever I might be less cantankerous...=)

Maybe we can figure out a way to transport my bf 200 miles so he can hug me like this and make me better. ;)

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

50 Follower Drawing - New Winner - ANKE!!!

gardemarin never got back to me so I did a new drawing this afternoon!! The new winner is Anke!!! Anke, you have 48 hrs to get back to me with information about where you want your gc to and what email address to use.

Congratulations and thanks to all my followers!!!

Book of the Week - Admit One

Title: Admit One
Author: Jenna Hilary Sinclair
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: 350 pages
Rating: 4 Quills
Tags: teacher, theater, banker, angst, contemporary


When high school teacher Tom Smith meets Kevin Bannerman at a gay club, he violates his own rule: one-night stands only. But when the weekend is over, he walks away, reminding himself that he lives a deeply closeted life for painful, compelling reasons. He keeps his secrets, his heart, and the cause of his crippled arm to himself, but almost immediately he bitterly regrets leaving Kevin. Months later, while Tom serves as reluctant assistant director for his school's production of Rent, he fears that the show's same-sex love angle will somehow out him. Protests against the play begin, one of the student actors is harassed, and during a parents' meeting, Tom encounters Kevin again. This time Tom can't fight the attraction between them, and he and Kevin begin a tentative relationship. Within Rent's message of acceptance and support, and as local churches oppose the play, Tom struggles to find the strength to admit one man into his heart.


"Give in to love or live in fear. No other path. No other way." This is the story about a man who has been hiding in fear for almost 15 years. He was hurt and betrayed by the one person he thought he could count on. He has been living half a life making due with a highly satisfying job and no personal connections. Until one night he meets someone he can't get out of his head. He runs away time after time until somehow this man crawls under his skin and won't leave.

This is a story about the healing power of love, the strength we often can't see in ourselves and how it is never too late to overcome our fears. I fell in love with the two main characters in this story but this story would not have been what it is without it's spectacular cast of side characters. The students in the play, the director, Kevin's daughter were all well written, engaging characters who added immeasurably to this story. 

While I did love this story, it had a few pacing issues. It is quite a long story (459 pdf pages) and I think that some of the back and forth at the beginning could have been cut. I did like the slow reveal of what happened with Tom and Sean in the past. I also would have loved to see more of Tom's brother, Grant. He had such a pivotal role in Tom's life but we barely got to know him at all.

So, overall, I give this story 4 Quills. It was an amazing read but had just a few places where it dragged and a few places where it was a little thin.  But do not let this turn you away because if you do, you will miss a story well worth the reading.

You can find Admit One for $6.99 at Dreamspinner Press.