Book Spotlight: Heaven and Hellsbane by Paige Cuccaro

hell

Synopsis:

Someone’s killing angels and turning the half human, half angel illorum warriors against their angelic supporters. If the supernatural baddy behind the attacks isn’t stopped soon, Heaven itself could fall victim. The Council of Seven has called in the best they’ve got to find the killers, and no one’s more surprised than Emma Jane Hellsbane when it’s her phone that rings.

But when her own angelic mentor—and off-limits hottie—Eli is targeted, Emma takes it personally. With Emma hot on the trail of the growing army of assassins, though, hackles start to raise around her. Everyone wants to know if she’s in it to protect all angels or just one in particular. The Council has their suspicions…and so does Emma’s boyfriend.

Now Emma isn’t just fighting off demons, rogue nephilim, and Fallen angels, but she’s defending her honor as well. The problem is even Emma Jane isn’t sure of her motives. One thing she does know: if she doesn’t figure out the killers’ identities soon, she may not live long enough to know what, or who, she really wants.

It’s all in a day’s work as Heaven’s ultimate bounty hunter.

About the Author:paige

Writing was never a foregone conclusion for me. I once had dreams of being a psychologist, a pediatrician, a school teacher, a photojournalist, a bartender, and/or an EMT. And then I met my husband and my world came into focus. Being wife and mother are my highest priorities and greatest joy. But escaping to the fanciful, sexy worlds twirling through my mind is an absolute necessity. Putting those worlds, and the cornucopia of characters that people them, on paper is just plain fun.

Paige lives in Ohio, with her husband, and three daughters. When she’s not writing she can be found doing the mom thing with a book in one hand and a notepad and pen in the other. Ideas come without warning and the best way to stimulate your imagination is to enjoy the imagination of someone else.

http://www.facebook.com/PaigeCuccaro

https://twitter.com/PaigeCuccaro

http://www.goodreads.com/PaigeCuccaro

www.paigecuccaro.com

http://beingpaige.blogspot.com/

This is the second book in the series and I’ll be reviewing both this and the first book later in the year.

Heaven and Hellsbane Banner 450 x 169

Book Spotlight: Heavy Metal by Natalie J. Damschroder

metal

Synopsis:

The world is not what Riley Kordek imagined. On the run from those who’ve targeted her, all Riley wants is a chance to figure out her new ability to bend metal’s energy. When a hot guy who knows more than he should helps her escape her attackers, she thinks she might’ve found someone who can lead her to the answers she needs.

Three years ago, Sam Remington walked away from his employer and the woman he loved, and now, all he’s looking to do is fill the gaping hole left behind. Except, when Sam takes Riley to the Society for Goddess Education and Defense, the stakes rise beyond what either of them could have imagined.

After being alone for so long, falling for Sam would be far too easy—and far too painful, once his old flame calls needing his help. Worse, Riley uncovers a plot with disastrous ramifications not only for herself, but for Sam and the people he loves—and potentially every goddess in the country.

About the Author: nat

Natalie J. Damschroder is an award-winning author of contemporary and paranormal romance—Love with a Shot of Adrenaline. She sold her first book in 1999, and 2013 will see the publication of her 14th novel. She grew up in Massachusetts and loves the New England Patriots more than anything. (Except her family. And writing and reading. And popcorn.)

When she’s not writing, revising, proofreading, or promoting her work, she does freelance editing and works part time as a chiropractic assistant. She and her husband have two daughters she’s dubbed “the anti-teenagers,” one of whom is also a novelist. (The other one prefers math. Smart kid. Practical.)

You can learn more about her and her books at:

 www.nataliedamschroder.com

http://www.goodreads.com/NatalieJDamschroder

https://twitter.com/NJDamschroder

https://www.facebook.com/NJDamschroder

http://nataliedamschroder.blogspot.com/

Everybody Needs a Little Romance www.everybodyneedsalittleromance.com

Heavy Metal is the second in a series and I’ll be reviewing both books later in the year.

Heavy Metal Banner 450 x 169

Book Review: Affairs of the Dead by A.J. Locke

AffairsOfTheDead_ByAJLocke_453x680Synopsis:

Help ghosts, stop a thief, and try not to die…

Necromancer Selene Vanream helps ghosts settle their affairs so they can move on. But when breaking the rules gets her in trouble, she’s bumped down to tracking ghosts trying to avoid the afterlife. Ghosts like Ethan Lance, who claims he was kicked out of his body when someone else jumped in. Which might be plausible—if such a thing were possible. And if Micah, Selene’s partner, didn’t pull her into an investigation of brutal murders that lead directly back to Ethan.

But when the whole mess puts Selene’s life in danger, she suddenly has very personal reasons to get Ethan’s body back. Between her uncomfortable relationship with Micah, and problems with her boss, Selene learns just how much trouble it can be when you don’t follow the rules.

About the Author:

A.J. Locke is an author and artist, originally from Trinidad, now residing in New York City. Affairs of the Dead is her debut novel, and other than writing she enjoys reading, drawing, painting, graphic design, and watching too much television.

Blog: http://iqurae.blogspot.com/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/AJ-Locke/522250584507699

Twitter:  @maqueripe

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17226279-affairs-of-the-dead

My Review:

Affairs of the Dead is set in a world where the paranormal is accepted, and well, normal. This makes a big difference to the story telling as it stops the author having to constantly hide her characters’ actions.

The protagonist Selene is head strong and sassy and I loved the way she handled herself in some very bizarre and sometimes dangerous situations. There’s a depth to her that will really resonate with urban fantasy enthusiasts. I must admit though that some of her choices and actions were questionable and I think she might prove to be a bit of a ‘Marmite’ type of character (for those outside the UK this means you’ll either love her, or hate her, with no ground in between) But then again, this is the case with most characters you care about. It didn’t end as well as I’d hoped – I can’t say much more for fear of ruining the ending – but I think that was where it let itself down.

From a writers’ perspective, again nothing really new here. The Laurell K Hamilton Anita Blake series has a similar concept of necromancers for sale and I’d just read The Necromancer’s Seduction too, so the premise didn’t amaze me – but what it does, it does very well. It’s got a good pace and a few naughty scenes here and there that spice it up. There’s a generous amount of humour and a solid story at the centre too. The writing was faultless, although some points were repeated a few times.

The front cover was great and again I admit it was the reason I choose to be part of the tour – I know, I should hang my head in shame, but deep down we all do it to some degree. I like pretty, shiny things (maybe I’m a book magpie?)

Overall I’d give Affairs of the Dead 4 out of 5 stars. A promising start to an urban fantasy series that I’d recommend to anyone looking for a good read to take them out of this boring world, and into a more interesting one.

Buy Affairs of the Dead

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  All Romance E-books  Kobo

Affairs of the Dead Banner 450 x 169

Book Review: Little Red by Trista Jaszczak

LittleRed1600x2400Synopsis:

Follow Sam Wentworth through the winding back roads of Louisiana, on a desperate escape from her past, where she falls into the arms of the unlikely and sometimes unwilling hero, Ethan Parker.

When circumstances and fate seal the two together, entangling them with his six older brothers, Sam finds her life changing in ways that she never imagined. Filled with feuding families and a little old bayou magic, can Ethan put aside everything he has ever known to keep Sam safe from the dangers that their lives and their love possess.

About the Author:

Trista Jaszczak (pronounced Jazz-ick) is a writer, military spouse and a mother. She is originally from Hamilton, Ohio but calls home where ever the military sends her and her family, which is currently Anchorage, Alaska. She has a great love for writing, the outdoors, fitness, guitar and the arts.

www.facebook.com/AuthorTristaJaszczak

www.tristajaszczak.wordpress.com

https://twitter.com/TristaJaszczak

http://authortristajaszczak.tumblr.com/

images (3)

 My Review:

There’s been a recent uptake of fairy tales retold. Lots of books and movies out there that have taken the basic premise of a famous fairy tale and manipulated it into another story. I must admit that Little Red Ridinghood is one of my personal favourites. Plucky red coated leading lady, hunky lumberjack, and possible supernatural wolf – who could ask for more? Little Red takes the basic idea of the fairy tale, but not so much that you feel it’s too familiar. Trista did a great job of writing something that can definitely stand as a story in itself, if you took out the fairy tale aspect.

From a writer’s perspective, it is a little clunky in places and is a bit jumpy. But it doesn’t stop the enjoyment of the overall story. I loved the idea of the wolf curse and the back story of the brothers. I also adored the setting of Louisiana

The front cover really doesn’t do the story justice – it could have done with being something similar to the front covers of the Jessica Haines Forsaken series and perhaps featured Ethan and his brothers too, as they play a major part in Sam’s story.

Overall I’d give Little Red 4 out of 5 stars, it’s an original take on an old tale which turned out to be an addictive read.

Buy Little Red:

 Little Red Banner 450 x 169

Interview with Wendy Lyn Watson

OUAW-cover-2

Synopsis:

A Perennial Wallflower…

When Mira Fitzhenry’s guardian arranges her engagement to one of the most scandalous lords to ever grace the peerage, all of society is abuzz. After all, the man has left a trio of dead young women in his wake, including his first fiancée. But Mira doesn’t see a killer in Nicholas’s moonlight eyes, and she resolves to find the real murderer before the wedding.

A Gothic Villain…

Expecting to scare the chit away within five minutes of meeting him, scarred and brooding Nicholas, the Viscount Ashfield, is intrigued by Mira’s tenacious resolve to prove his innocence. She’s not put off by his imposing appearance, but his family’s dark secrets mean he cannot let her get close.

As the wedding approaches, Nicholas and Mira grow ever closer, yet so does the danger.Will the truth bring Nicholas and Mira together or tear their love apart?

 About the Author:

Wendy Lyn Watson writes mysteries of all types: contemporary, historical, and cozy. Whatever the time or the tone, her mysteries always feature a dose of humor and a dollop of romance. Her first cozy series, the Mysteries a la Mode, feature the owner of an ice cream parlor in a small Texas town.Watson-PubPhono-Color-200x300

Once Upon a Wallflower, due to be released in August of 2013, is a Regency-set romantic mystery. While Wendy does not commit (or solve) mysteries in real life, she can kill a pint of ice cream in nothing flat. She also enjoys 80s music, Asian horror films, quilting, and vegetarian cooking.

While she was born in Ohio and has called half a dozen states home, she currently lives in a college town in North Texas along with her husband and their three cats (Iphy, Squeak-a-Doodle, and Todd Baryshnikov).

She loves to hear from readers, so find her on Facebook at @wendylynwatsonauthor.

http://www.wendylynwatson.com

http://twitter.com/wendylynwatson

http://pinterest.com/wendylynwatson/

https://www.facebook.com/WendyLynWatsonAuthor

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2928672.Wendy_Lyn_Watson

Interview:

Tell us about your publishing journey…
I found an my agent, Kim Lionetti, through an RWA contest.  She is the one who suggested my voice was right for cozy mysteries, and I sold my first cozy proposal for the Mysteries a la Mode. I never gave up my love for historical romance, though, so it made sense for me to try my hand at historical romantic mystery.  It combines everything I love in one package.  Working with Entangled on this project has been great.  They have given me the freedom to cross genre boundaries in a way a traditional publisher could not.
Who is your favorite mystery writer and why?
No fair! I have so many.  If I had to pick a favorite, though, I would choose Denise Mina. “Deception” is one of my favorite novels of all time.
If you were casting Once Upon a Wallflower,  who would you put in the leads?
Hugh Jackman would make a wonderful Nicholas … his face has character, and he’s got that dazzling crooked smile.  For Mira, I’d cast Isla Fisher.  I love her ability to play ernest, innocent characters.
If you could have dinner with any gothic villain from either literature, movie or real life, who would it be and why?
I know I’m playing fast and loose with the term “gothic,” and I know I should probably pick a guy, but I would love to have dinner with Eli from “Let the Right One In.”  I think she’s a fascinating character, trapped forever in a child’s body, relying on her ability to woo others in order to survive.  Perhaps it’s because the movie focuses so much on the practicalities of being a vampire, but she seems more emotionally complex than most.  I would love to have dinner with her, but I’d be worried that I might become the dinner.
If you had the chance to solve a famous mystery, which would you choose?
I  would love to solve the Zodiac murders. Such a fantastic puzzle, and the letters make it seem like the answer is tantalizingly close.
How do you plot a mystery? Is it different from other novels?
As with other novels, plotting a mystery requires thinking about the narrative arc, the key turning points in the plot and in the journey of the main character.  I personally find it easiest to plot backward. Where do I want to end up?  How do I get there?  Perhaps the biggest difference between plotting a mystery and plotting other novels is the need to plant clues.  True mysteries abide by a rule of “fair play”: the author has to give the reader all the information to solve the mystery on her own . . . without coming right out and spilling the beans.  That means weaving clues into the narrative, a process that requires a great deal of rewriting and editing.
What part of the writing process do you enjoy the most?
I love a first chapter.  It’s a little terrifying, but coming up with that perfect first line, setting the scene for the rest of the story, and simply having that whole universe of possibility in front of you is also exhilarating.
What are you reading at the moment?
I’m really late to the party, but I’m reading Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
What is the best advice you have ever been given?
Don’t compare yourself to others.  I find this advice difficult to follow, but I know that a lot of the tension and frustration in my life comes from trying to measure myself and my success against the accomplishments of other people.  Success comes in many forms, and you have to find the form that fits you, not someone else.
Once Upon a Wallflower Banner 450 x 169

Book Review: Trial by Fire by Margarita Gakis

TrialByFire_CVR_LRGSynopsis: 

Jade leads a structured life: Routine job. Caffeine addiction. No serious relationships. And now, she can spontaneously set things on fire with her mind. Well… perhaps “normal” was never in the cards for her. As she questions her own sanity and spirals out of control, a man appears on her doorstep and tells her that, like him, she’s a witch.

Pulled in all directions, her unbridled magic draws dangerous attention and Jade wonders if she’s made the worst mistake of her life by joining a coven, or if she’ll even live long enough to regret it.

About the Author:

Margarita loves the art, creativity and romanticism of storytelling. Sometimes, however, the act of putting pen to paper proves challenging, elusive. She develops genuine, relatable characters which grow in the hearts of her readers. From that foundation, the stories flourish into a warm friend.

She enjoys pursuits which blur the lines between the analytical and creative sides of her brain. This includes her day job in electronic data management, where she uses her creativity to solve logical problems, and also her lessons learning to play the cello, where she finds beauty in the structure of music and the instrument. She believes there is a place for both logic and imagination to work together. When they do, the results are magical.

Margarita has a special spot in her heart for dogs and lives with three of them. It can be a little overwhelming but the quality snuggle time makes up for it.

Gakis1

Margarita lives in Calgary, Alberta with her family.

http://margaritagakis.wordpress.com

Twitter:  @margaritagakis

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/CovencraftSeries

 My Review:

I really enjoyed this book. I love a good witchy story and the main character Jade was easy to read and very likeable – which makes a big difference in the story. It had a solid plot with twists and the dialogue was especially good; I always think realistic aspects must be included in fantasy stories to keep them at least slightly believable.

I also liked Paris as a character. He was written well and wasn’t stereotypical or corny in any way – which can be a trap for this genre.

I especially liked Jade with her ‘days without incident’ countdown. It reminded me of one of my favourite TV shows ‘The Simpsons’ where, in the opening credits, Lenny falls off a ladder as he’s trying to hang their ‘days without incident’ sign.

From a writer’s perspective it was fast paced and flowed nicely. I finished the book within two days and it didn’t feel like a task or something that I was forced to do – it was a welcome distraction to spend some time with Margarita’s characters.

The front cover is very evocative and strangely beautiful – and it was what made me chose to review this book in the first place – I know, that’s really shallow of me – but I think it’s time to admit that most people do judge books by their covers.

It had a kind of Golden Compass meets True Blood feel to it and I’d give it 4 out of 5 stars. A promising start to a new urban fantasy series, as it definitely left it open for another book.

Buy Trial by Fire

Trial by Fire Banner 450 x 169

Book Review: A Pirate’s Curse by M.L. Guida

 

91YE+-co+RL._SL1500_Synopsis:

Like a dark angel, Captain Kane O’Brien rescues Hannah Knight and her father from drowning after vampire pirates murder their crew and sink their ship. Struggling to control and hide her telekinetic powers, Hannah discovers the honorable and bold captain possesses his own secrets.

Every full moon, Kane turns into a vampire. Finding out Hannah not to be the cabin boy she resembles, but a beautiful, luscious woman, tempts all his appetites. Desperate to be free of his curse, Kane considers handing Hannah over to a demon. But after Hannah uses her power to save his ship from his immortal enemy, Kane can no longer deny his attraction and vows to protect Hannah with his life.

To find true love, they must combine their powers to defeat evil vampires, thwart Hannah’s misogynist fiancé and escape a crafty demon.

 About the Author:

M.L. Guida lives in Colorado near the Rocky Mountains. She loves to take her cocker spaniel, Sadie, for walks on the trails behind her house. The preternatural has always interested M.L. and even as young girl, she’d read Alfred Hitchcock’s The Three Young Investigators. Her favorite book in his series was the Mystery of the Green Ghost. It was a big hit in the third grade.

Today, she continues to love the paranormal and one of her favorite shows is Supernatural. Yes, she’s a Sam and Dean Winchester fan. Her favorite monster is a vampire. Bram Stoker and Ann Rice got her hooked. Who wouldn’t love a sexy man biting you on the neck?

M.L. Guida just finished obtaining her Master of Arts in Creative Writing and now currently, has two masters. The other is a Master of Social Work.images

She currently is writing for Passion in Print with her Angels of Death series and has a contract with Lyrical Press and will be releasing a new paranormal novella in March 2014. She is currently working on her new Legends of the Soaring Phoenix and plans to release the first novel in the summer of 2013.

She is a member of Colorado Romance Writers and Romance Writers of America.

http://www.mlguida.com

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5177984.M_L_Guida/blog

http://www.mlguida.com/blog/

@ml_mlguida

https://www.facebook.com/ml.guida1

My Review:

I love the idea of paranormal historical romance. This genre really does afford itself a trip to utter fantasy and I adored the idea of vampire pirates, or Vampirates! A Pirate’s Curse had a great premise and some wonderful characters.

It did jump around a little in the beginning, and I must admit that I got a bit confused as to what was happening (whether we were in the past or present during flashbacks) but this does iron itself out quite quickly. The relationship between the two main characters was well crafted, and considering they were both of paranormal in origin, believable and romantic.

From a writer’s perspective, I think that some of the book could have been tightened up. But, that’s just my opinion – as an author it can actually sometimes be hard to read someone else’s work and not think how you would alter the flow of certain paragraphs, sentences and scenes.  I’m sure another author would read something of mine and have the same thoughts – that’s what makes the literary world turn, different voices and approaches to the written word.

Fantastic book cover – gorgeous half naked vampire pirate – need I say more?

I’d give A Pirate’s Curse 3 out of 5 stars and would recommend it to a romance book addict looking for a different genre to read.

 Buy A Pirate’s Curse Amazon    Amazon Print

A Pirates Curse Banner 450 x 169

Book Review: Seal of Destiny by Traci Douglas

16719966

Synopsis

Love conquers all… but can it stop the Apocalypse?

Mira Herald is having the worst life ever.  Not only is she plagued by horrific nightmares starring the Devil himself, she’s now the target of a power-hungry, rogue minion, freshly sprung from Hell and bent on her destruction.  To complicate matters further, she’s acquired a stalker. One who insists he’s a divine warrior sent for her protection because she houses an ancient relic with the power to unleash Armageddon. Last time Mira checked, she wasn’t insane. Still, all this celestial mayhem is enough to drive a girl crazy.

Kagan is a member of the Scion, an elite team of immortal warriors selected by Divinity to aid mankind and save the world. After a century alone, Kagan is summoned for a new mission. He’s eager to begin. Eager until he’s informed his mission consists of protecting a woman with no clue to the power she wields. Plus, his briefing fails to prepare him for his new target’s cosmic-sized attitude problem.  As Divinity’s sworn servant, he’s required to fulfill his duty. His oath, however, does not require him to be enthusiastic about his new assignment or warm-and-fuzzy toward his new compatriot. He plans a wham-bam rescue and a quick return to solitude.

The rogue minion attacks—with the backing of a mysterious organization—and all Hades erupts, putting a fast end to any whirlwind escapes. Accustomed to staunch independence, Mira’s survival now requires full cooperation and an unwavering belief in Kagan. The battle-hardened warrior is also forced to chose: between duty and desire. Amidst the turmoil, Kagan and Mira’s undeniable passion draws them closer to each other and down a path neither expected but both yearn for, more than they ever knew.

Will love save the day? The world’s fate depends on the answer. Book Trailer for the series: http://youtu.be/vTn0_15T2iY

About the Author:

Traci is the author of paranormal/urban fantasy and contemporary romances featuring a sly, urban

TraciDouglasedge, including her current Seven Seals series. Her stories feature sizzling alpha-male heroes full of dark humor, quick wits and major attitudes; smart, independent heroines who always give as good as they get; and scrumptiously evil villains who are—

more often than not—bent on world destruction. She enjoys weaving ancient curses and mythology, modern science and old religion, and great dialogue together to build red-hot, sizzling chemistry between her main characters.

Traci is an active member of Romance Writers of America (RWA), Indiana Romance Writers of America (IRWA) and Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal Writers (FF&P) and is pursing a Masters of Fine Arts degree in Writing Popular Fiction through Seton Hill University. Her stories have made the final rounds in several RWA chapter contests, including the 2012 Duel on the Delta, the 2012 Molly Awards, and the 2012 Catherine Awards. An earlier draft of Seal of Destiny won the paranormal category of the 2012 Marlene Awards sponsored by the Washington Romance Writers.

Other current projects include upcoming books in the Seven Seals series and a new futuristic suspense series with hints of the paranormal and plenty of romance.

She loves hearing from readers! Connect with Traci here:

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads / Amazon / Pinterest

My Review:

I do like a book crammed with action, and Seal of Destiny definitely delivers that. It’s  a paranormal romance apocalypse, so also offers something different from the usual stories out there.  It’s got some adult sizzle in there, so I’d not recommend it to anyone under 18, but if you’re over then, enjoy!

I liked Mira and Kagan and felt that they served the book well and I’d have preferred to spend more time on them, rather than the many other characters in the book – not to say that they are not welcome or fun also – but I’ve always been attracted to first person books, rather than third and this is primarily why I tend to gravitate toward the main character and can get a bit frustrated when the emphasis falls off them and onto someone else.

As themes go, this one is good vs evil and so has quite an epic feel to it. It’s written well and, although I felt the start was a little confusing, it opens out into an amazing journey with healthy dollops of humor, romance and suspense.

I’d give Seal of Destiny 4 out of 5 stars. Would make a fab TV series, perhaps similar to Supernatural.

Seal of Surrender Banner 450 x 169 July - Aug

Book Review: Shadow Embraced by Cheree Smith

cover30235-medium

Synopsis:

No escape.

Those words haunt Scar’s dreams. She thinks the creature that terrorises her while asleep isn’t real, but when she’s abducted and taken to a reform school meant to contain creatures too dangerous to function in society, she starts to wonder whether she isn’t some monster.

She turns to an underground fight club full of vampires, werewolves and witches established by the students to control her urges, and who is she kidding, she loves to fight.

When fighters begin to disappear, turning Scar into the prime suspect, she must race to prove her innocence before her true nature is exposed.

The only problem is that she’s not entirely sure she’s innocent.

About Cheree SmithCheree-Smith-225x300

Cheree Smith lives in a country town in Australia as a high school English teacher where she writes paranormal, horror and dark stories for young adults. She enjoys listening to and learning about legends and myths, watching scary movies and dreaming up new worlds where monsters can come alive. When she is not in her writing cave she can be found listening to music, even dabbling in the occasional writing of music or reading.

Website –  Blog – Twitter – Facebook – Goodreads

My Review:

Shadow Embraced is a kind of Harry Potter meets Twilight, and although there’s nothing really new here, in terms of story line, it’s still a great read – especially if you’re a Twilight fan.

From a writer’s perspective the whole book is written first person present tense, which is really hard to maintain – so my hat is off to Cheree for doing this – keeping it present tense is a great way of cranking up the tension and keeping the reader in the moment. There were a few mistakes in there – but I’m assuming that’s because I had a galley copy rather than the finished manuscript.

The whole story was interesting and it encapsulates the whole supernatural world nicely. It was written exceptionally well and the plot was thought out – which is always a tick in my book as, with paranormal stories, it’s all too easy to simply rely on that aspect to make your work interesting.

Scar was a a slight let down as a character – she’s kind of two dimensional and the only interesting part of her is that she is a Dhampire. But, in her defense, it’s kind of a hard thing to find out – so perhaps she would be all-consumed by that and not much else.

I’d give Shadow Embraced 4 stars out 5 as I really loved the Twilight books and, in the absence of any new ones coming out any time soon – this really filled a gap.

Link through here for a competition

Link through here for a competition

Book Review and Interview: The Necromancer’s Seduction by Mimi Sebastian

cover32479-medium

Synopsis:

She has never feared the walking dead. It’s the power required to reanimate the dead that startles her, seduces her. The power that dwells inside her…and is growing.

For Professor Ruby Montagne, being a necromancer has brought her nothing but heartache, and she walked away from that part of her life long ago. However, her quiet existence in San Francisco is shattered when she stumbles upon the body of a slain witch, and the supernatural community insists she transform him into a revenant to track the killer. But his murder was just the beginning, and Ruby soon realizes that the stakes are higher than anyone can imagine—and that revenants have nasty minds of their own.

Now demonic creatures have escaped into the human world, and zombies once again walk the streets. For humanity’s sake, Ruby forms an unlikely alliance with a witch, a zombie, and Ewan March, a demon warrior who sets her senses on fire.

She’s always distrusted demons and Ewan is no exception, but circumstances push them closer together, and Ruby not only finds it harder to resist him, she isn’t sure she even wants to. But she suspects his job of patrolling the portal separating humans and demons conceals a dark and deadly past that may consume them both.

With events spiraling out of control, Ruby unravels a plot that not only threatens the human and demon realms, but puts Ruby’s very soul in jeopardy. Because when the dead walk, no one is safe. Especially Ruby.

About the Author:

Noemi Ghirghi writes as Mimi Sebastian and raised herself on books and the strange and unusual with an unhealthy dose of comics and Scooby Doo. Loving angst-filled romance thrown in the mix, she decided to blend all those elements in a steamy mix in her first Urban Fantasy series, the Necromancer Books. The first book, The Necromancer’s Seduction, debuts July 15, 2013, with ImaJinn Books.

Noemi spent two years in the Ivory Coast with the Peace Corps and loves to introduce tid-bits from her experiences in her writing. She’s a member of Romance Writers of America and the Fantasy, Futuristic and Paranormal chapter of RWA. A transplant from the beaches of Florida, Noemi now wanders the desert in Phoenix, AZ, and attempts to balance writing with a day career, fantastic family, and household diva: her Amazon parrot.

www.mimisebastian.com

http://mimisebastian.wordpress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/NecromancerSeriesMimiSebastianAuthor

https://twitter.com/SebastianMimi

http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/13508578-mimi-sebastian

Interview with Mimi Sebastian:

Tell us about your publishing journey.

I started taking online classes and met some great authors who provided motivating encouragement to submit my manuscript. I queried some agents first. Got rejections. I joined the local RWA chapter and made some great friends. Focused on writing my second book. Then decided to query directly to some small publishers and was picked up by ImaJinn. I’m very happy with going with a smaller, independent publisher. It’s the right path for this point in my life and writing career. They are very supportive.

Who is your favourite authors and why?

Ray Bradbury, H.P. Lovecraft, Poe, Ambrose Bierce, Stephen King, Clive Barker, Dean Koontz. Ray Bradbury is such a beautiful writer. Horror writers are good with creating mood and atmosphere because that’s an important part of imparting the fear. I try to incorporate that in my Urban Fantasy, I mean, we are talking about zombies and other supernatural beings. I recently read some Lisa Gardner and think she does an amazing job with writing suspense. I also read lots of comics and think Matt Fraction is a great writer. He’s currently writing a wonderful new comic series Hawkeye.

What was the last book you read?

Blood Rites by Jim Butcher.

 What advice would you give to inspiring writers?

Writing is a bi-polar endeavor. One day, you can be on the best writing high and the next day, completely in the dumps. It’s okay to take breaks when you need it, but just keep writing, and try to find other writers to connect with. They will understand what you are going through. And when you’ve finished a manuscript and decide to query or whatever path you take, start another book, so you don’t obsess over rejections.

What made you pick the genre you write in?

I think Urban Fantasy chose me J. But I’ve always been fascinated by the strange and unusual and like exploring how supernatural characters deal with living in the “normal” world and how being supernatural gives that person glimpses into the strange and unusual, which I love. I also write pirate historical romance because I love pirates and seafaring adventure.

Which of your characters in Necromancer’s Seduction is most like you?

Probably Ruby, which is kind of scary. Not because she’s a necromancer, LOL. I think lots of things about our psyches slip into our writing and characters without us really knowing. I’m a bit of an introvert and I see some of that in Ruby and how she relates to the other characters.

 Which character would you not like to meet in a dark alley?

Any one of my zombies.

What’s the hardest part of the writing process for you?

Sometimes it’s just getting those creative juices flowing. I have to fit writing in between work, taking care of family and household, so I sometimes only have an hour or two at a time and it can be hard to jump start the muse.

Do you find it difficult writing love scenes?

Yes and no. Sometimes it’s challenging coming up with creative words beyond thrust, etc., but each of my sex scenes has an emotion driving it, depending on where the characters are coming from or what state their relationship is in. It can be angry sex, or sex for the sake of asserting dominance, or fulfilling some need. I like finding that emotional state to frame the sex scene.

If you could raise the dead – which deceased famous faces would you rise and why?

I’d love to see Bob Marley play live so I’d bring him back. Mark Twain, because we need a brilliant satirist in our world right now.

My Review:

I really enjoyed this book. It reminded me of Laurell K Hamilton’s Anita Blake series – before her books descended into random wanton sex for the sake of it. Mimi creates a wonderful character in Ruby who takes on supernatural journey that is definitely open for another book. The sex scenes are classy and carefully placed and some of the zombie descriptions are not only gross buy amusing; for example ‘Damn these zombies and their Lego body parts!’

From a writer’s perspective there wasn’t any new plot points in there, no real surprises – but hey, that’s okay. There’s not much more than can be done with paranormal romance, as it’s such a popular genre and there are so many books out there right now. It jumped in a few places, but I was reading a Galley, so I put that down to it being an un-corrected proof. The Necromancer’s Seduction may not be revolutionary in concept, but what it does do, it does extremely well.

The front cover is romantic and sensual and really does capture the essence of the book. Although not enough that you’d be embarrassed reading it on a train!

I’ve always thought necromancers are one of the more forgotten about paranormal characters, so I do relish the fact that there is now another series out there to read.

4 out of 5 stars – if you’re a paranormal romance fan – pick up this book. It’s a solid read that keeps your eyes on the page. But beware! If you try to put it down, it will rise back up and devour your reading time!

Buy The Necromancer’s Seduction

The Necromancers Seduction Banner June July PROMO