Welcome to my dungeon ~ book reviews, musings, education and book challenges relating to erotica, graphic sex and more. I love gentle pain mixed with rough pleasure.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Review: The Enforcer

The Enforcer The Enforcer by Kele Moon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What is Valentino's story? With a name like Valentine aka Tino, he must be a lover boy. He is an enforcer which is opposite of his lover boy name. How did Tino become an enforcer? Ms. Moon takes us back to the beginning. How did these three boys tied together by the same mother get tangled in with the Sicilian Mafia? Tino's story is a two part one and this first part is a heart breaker.

Unbeknownst to his brothers, Tino suffers more than all the rest. He does it quietly. The violations he experiences at the hands of adults is heinous and unacceptable. I am furious and I want to kill them all. Preying on children is a hot button of mine. As a stepmother, I can not begin to even fathom how this all happens. It is out of a Grimm Fairy-tale. I want to coming like a vengeful angel....



The characters in this story are entrancing. Every character pulls me in. Brianna as the love interest is perfect. These two are star cross lovers and I can only hope it does not end in a Shakespearean way. It is incredible Brianna and Tino can be the honourable people they are today. With all the bad things thrown at them, one would have thought they would just give up. It just goes to show, when you have bonds of love and have a connection, it makes a person stronger.

Our secondary characters do show up and Nova learns just how arrogant he's been. He is very stressed and he does the best to protect his family. Of course, when one is so young, it is hard to consider everything. Sometimes the impacts are so far flung that it is hard to take into consideration.

What really breaks my heart here is the underground sexual slavery. Whilst it is a club that no one wants to be in, it is still a bond which Tino creates to help create a safe place for as many as he can. The fact this is happening underneath people's noses is what makes me furious. How can they not know? How can parents pimp out their own child for this? These people need to be eradicated. I am feeling violent again. The second part of Tino's story can't come fast enough. Ms. Moon drags us through the depraved and dark side. This is by far one of her darkest books. When does the light start to shine in? When does vengeance and justice get mete out? I want to be there with a front row seat. Highly recommended to dark erotica lovers who love tortured souls.

Given as an arc by the author



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Monday, May 30, 2016

No Remedy Tour and Giveaway!

@riptidebooks @Christine_dAbo






Hello, my name is Christine d’Abo! Thank you so much for having me here on the blog today.
There’s something really enticing about a ménage story. Am I right?? Lots of hot, sweaty bodies all crammed together doing all sorts of things to one another. In the case of No Remedy, that crammed space is both in the cockpit and under the bedsheets.

Mace is on a mission to save her friend and captain, Faolan Wolf. She’s been working closely with Alec, a brilliant scientist who seems to be on the verge of a cure for the disease that’s killing Faolan. But when his ex-lover Byron shows up, Mace realizes that there’s more to Alec than meets the eye.

Byron is dominant in the bedroom and just as pushy outside. While she might put up with it for a few rounds of great sex, there’s no way she’ll let him put Faolan’s life in jeopardy. Too bad the lines get blurred and she starts to fall for both Alec and Byron. But she’s not sure if there’s room enough in their relationship for three.

If you would like to learn more about me, please pay a visit to my website www.christinedabo.com. I’m also very active on Twitter as @Christine_dAbo and have a monthly newsletter. If you’d like to sign up, simply click here to fill out the form.


About No Remedy

For months, Mace Simms has been seeking an antidote for the poison killing her mentor. Her only hope is Alec Roiten, a brilliant scientist hiding on a backwater planet. Posing as a research assistant, Mace offers the elusive genius all the help she can, ignoring the explosive chemistry between them. Soon they’re close to a cure.

But then Alec’s former love Byron shows up, attempting to claim a bounty on Alec’s head, and all that careful research gets left behind when they’re forced to flee. And when Byron realizes the tip-off about Alec was a ruse by his rivals to lure him out into the open to kill him, the bounty hunt turns into a three-person scramble for survival.

Byron wants his old lover back, Alec is consumed by a haunting secret about the poison he’s desperate to defeat, and Mace is caught between them. But she’s beginning to think that’s exactly where she belongs as the three are drawn together in their race against death.

Publisher's note: This title is an edited second edition, previously published in 2011.


About Christine d’Abo

A romance novelist and short story writer, Christine has over thirty publications to her name. She loves to exercise and stops writing just long enough to keep her body in motion too. When she’s not pretending to be a ninja in her basement, she’s most likely spending time with her family and two dogs.

Connect with Christine:

·Website: christinedabo.com
·Twitter: @Christine_dAbo


Giveaway

To celebrate the release of the Bounty series, one lucky person will receive a $50 gift certificate to Riptide. Winner will be selected from across all three book tours (No Quarter, No Remedy, No Master) and as such, the contest is open until midnight, Eastern time, on July 2, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Comment to enter, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!


Sunday, May 29, 2016

Review: Spirit Bound

Spirit Bound Spirit Bound by Tessa McFionn
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The Romance Review

Spiritmates, tortured lovers and good versus evils are all up my alley. Full disclosure, I did not read the first book in this series. This book should probably be read after the first one. Still, it is possible to read this story and catch onto what is going on.

Galen Alexiou is an immortal warrior recruited a couple of thousand years ago to protect humanity and fight the good fight. In all these years, he has never met his spiritmate and figured it would never happen to him. Calliope Vandeen is a college student trying to complete her exams when she is kidnapped, interrogated and then tortured.

The setup of this story is good. The concept is attractive. For those who love Sherilynn Kenyon's Dark-Hunter series, this book may be up your alley. There are similarities with ancient warriors given a second chance. There is also a leader of these warriors who may resemble Acheron a bit, yet speak like one of the brothers in J.R. Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood. Perhaps if I have read this book before the other two series, I would have rated this higher.

What would have helped this story more for me is the character building. Calliope starts out strong. She putters out midway. Her irrational behaviour when searching for her roommate goes against her previous logic when under torture. One can argue this is because she is more fearful for those she loves rather than what happens to herself. Then at the end she pulls off an unexpected feat that just throws me for a loop. This inconsistency does not work for me.

Galen's character is just okay. He is a bit bland and unmemorable. I could not really connect to him nor did I care if he died. The chemistry between him and Calliope is missing. Perhaps it is because the criticality of their binding is forced into a contrived miscommunication to add danger which lessens the impact.

This book started out strong and then became a bit mundane due to my lack of engagement with the characters. The world building is generic enough that it becomes a bit forgettable. This story is recommended to those who enjoy romance with soulmate themes.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Review: Devoted



Devoted Devoted by Lexi Blake
My rating: 2.5 of 5 stars

What is it with the Alder boys? Flynn is Mitch's brother. Well, 1/2 brother because Mitch is a bastard - by birth and by nature. Flynn breaks the cardinal rule when entering in a D/s relationship. Okay, what I consider the cardinal rule. He went in purposely to mislead his submissive. He did not have open communication and completely broke trust. W.T.F. Yes, yes, okay, no one is perfect. Yes, yes, okay, so guys are DUMBASSES and the way it is "explained here" it rationalizes why Flynn did what he did to unsuspecting Amy.

Flynn...


This was a complete train wreck from chapter two. I cringed as Flynn lied to himself and proceeded to really fuck up a relationship that could be so good. Then this ending. WTF. Yes, yes, this is a romantic BDSM glitterkink where sparkles are being blown up my ass. This grand gesture? Who the HELL does this kind of shit? What was he thinking? For all you "Snow White" or "Sleeping Beauty" princess complexes, this book is for you. For those of us who are more like Drew Barrymore in Ever After, prepare to rip your hair out. Amy is seriously like Drew Barrymore's character. Then at the end, her independence and showing she can do what men do, but better... is TOTALLY UNDERCUT BECAUSE FLYNN AND HER EX-HUSBAND HAVE TO SWOOP IN TO SAVE THE DAY.

GAH!!!!!!




Okay, so, Flynn is not a bad guy. He isn't. He is an arrogant shit who doesn't know a thing about running a company and totally hoses a woman who can run her own company. He better be damn good in bed, that's all I have to say.

Anyway, the story kept me reading in one sitting as I wanted to bash Flynn's head in. I felt so badly for Amy. I totally know how she feels. This is still better than Mitch's story which was a 2 almost a 1.5. This one with Flynn is a 2.5. I can't quite say I enjoyed it. But I didn't hate it. It was well written because everything Ms. Blake writes is well written.

I can't wait until we get back to the suspense. Please, back to finding Theo. Please, less asshat males thinking they can go through some bloody course and become "certified" to be a dom. Recommended to fans of this series. Seriously, do not read this as a standalone or your first book for this author.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Review: Submitting To The Clan

Submitting To The Clan Submitting To The Clan by Caitlin Ricci
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Romance Review

Behavioural conditioning is difficult to break and recondition. Sometimes it is a necessity because the conditioning is detrimental to one's health.

Avery is a young dragon shifter who only knows pain, degradation and abuse. As the least powerful shifter, he is at the bottom of the pecking order which means he is always the whore. Whores are abused and treated poorly. When they are no longer attractive, they are discarded like yesterday's garbage. Cast out again, Avery has nowhere to go and may die from starvation, cold and exhaustion.

I am going to be pedantic here. Avery is not a whore. Whores are paid at least a little money. Avery is a sexual slave. He isn't even a slut in my book because he doesn't want to give the sex away for free. This little pet peeve aside, the story is depressing. The first in the series, this dragon world is bleak, cruel and antagonistic. There also seems to be only male dragons which is a little odd as it begs the question, where do they come from? How does one become a dragon shifter if there are no females? How do they procreate? Speaking of procreating, let's discuss the sex scenes. From an erotic scene perspective, there is a hint of kink. None of it is arousing for me because Avery is so bloody damaged. Donovan is noble and trying to do the right thing. Poor bugger is stuck with blue balls.

The characters are simplistic and easy to understand. A reader only feels pity for Avery. He is like an abused dog. He flinches in response to sudden movements. He cowers into himself. It just about breaks a reader's heart how demoralized and defiled he has been. As with all abused animals and humans, it takes a long time to break free of this mentality. Lucky for Avery, he found a clan with a strong and gentle leader--Donovan. This relationship-driven storyline is sweet if a bit frustrating. Ms. Ricci does a nice job of showing Avery's confusion and demonstrating Donovan's patience.

This short story moves at a nice, easy pace. There is an odd tangent regarding Avery's dislike of flying in the cold rain. Not sure if there is supposed to be more tie-in about this point or if it is to once again demonstrate that Avery will put everyone's needs above his own. Still, the happily ever after is a sweet ending for a potential better future. Recommended to m/m paranormal readers who enjoy angst and a loving alpha male.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Review: Beast Coast

Beast Coast Sexy and action packed #bookreview @JC_McKenzie

Beast Coast by J.C. McKenzie
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Right after finishing the first book, I couldn't wait to read the second one. Beast Coast starts up right after the ending of book one. This is not a standalone. The series must be read in order to enjoy it fully. Andy thought she could be free from the Master Vampire, Lucien. Caught on a slight technicality, Andy is still stuck under Lucien's thumb. Not only does she still have Wick the werewolf sniffing after her, Tristian the wereleopard alpha wants a lick.

This tug of war between the two sexy men is good for a woman's ego but rough on her heart. With her animal spirits putting in their two cents, it can drive a woman crazy. The vampires are still deadly and sexually deviant. Lucien's human servant is disturbing but for those who enjoy dark erotica, it is hard to say no to his brand of debauchery and rough body play. Basically the relationships in this book are "complicated". It is hard to choose just one male. Andy, forget monogamy and go for poly! This book is more than just hawt erotic tension. The plot is attention grabbing.

Andy is learning more about her own powers. She also has two jobs that may have a conflict of interest. Andy needs to balance her job's duty and what Lucien demands of her. Can she do it? It is tough. The conflict is well done and the suspense part keeps my attention. The conclusion comes all too quick. It leaves a reader wanting to read the next book. Recommended to paranormal readers who enjoy sexual tension, action and woman surrounded by too many suitors.

* Review copy provided via Reading Alley in exchange for an honest review.

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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Review: Shift Happens

Shift Happens
for paranormal romance readers who enjoy a tough female lead @JC_McKenzie #bookreview #
Shift Happens by J.C. McKenzie
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

New to me author Ms. McKenzie grabs my attention and keeps me riveted. This book reminds me of a few authors I really enjoy. With this first book, the readers are introduced to killer Andrea McNelly, doing her job. She is trying to complete her assignment to off a killer. Working for a government agency set up to control rogue paranormals, her job is pretty isolated. When her job goes wrong and entangles her with a Master vampire and Alpha werewolf, things cannot get any worse. And then it does. Andrea aka Andy is in a bad position. Her job is not what she thought it was. Now she is stuck between a rock and a hard place.

The world building is well done. It has a bit of a Laurell K Hamilton Anita Blake series feel. Then it is mix with a bit of Patricia Briggs Mercy Thompson series with the shifter type. Then finally a touch of Jane Yellowrock series by Faith Hunter can be detected. If you enjoyed any of those series, this is a must read author. The characters are well done. I really liked Andy. Her conflict with a Master Vampire is amusing. Her fight to stay solitary is what pulls a reader to her. Andy is so alone and it is a bit melancholy. Still, she keeps doing what she thinks is right.

This story moves at a good pace and right after finishing it, a reader will want to dive into the next book. The plot contains a couple of twists which keeps a reader engaged. The sexual tension also adds a sexy layer. I liked the slightly creepy vampires. They are amusing. The dominance from the alpha werewolf, Wick, can come across annoying for those who do not like D/s. For those that do, a reader may keep screaming at Andy to just submit. Really, for D/s lovers, the males in here are very hard to resist, even if they are a bit domineering and need a good slap upside the head. Recommended for paranormal romance readers who enjoy a tough female lead.

* Review copy provided via Reading Alley in exchange for an honest review.