Review: Last of Summer by Genna Donaghy

Originally posted on velvetpanic Heloise West:

My rating: <3 <3 <3 <3 <3

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (Advent Calender 2014 “Celebrate!”)

This is a jewel of a winter holiday story, a quick read but one that lingers in the imagination long after the last line. Rowan, a young man from a family of witches, is the least magical of them, but he is tapped by the earth forces of Yule to bring on the rebirth of the year. Aided by a sexy taxi driver, Martin, he must bring a beautiful but fading phoenix to Stonehenge before it’s too late.

I loved this story, but mostly because I love the author’s ability to blend fantasy and myth with reality. Rowan is earthy and genuine, as is the lover their shared adventure brings him.

Here’s to hoping we see more Genna Donaghy stories in 2015 :D

Buy Links: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=5859

http://www.amazon.com/Last-Summer-Genna-Donaghy-ebook/dp/B00QFFEVQS/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1419431172&sr=8-4&keywords=last+of+summer

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Review: Hitting Black Ice by Heloise West

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(I was provided an ARC for an honest review.)

Blurb: ER physician’s assistant Hunter guards his heart carefully, but that doesn’t stop him from falling for Shawn, the front desk clerk. He keeps his distance from relationships for a reason, but just can’t help himself when it comes to Shawn.

Shawn is on the run from the law and love to protect himself and anyone else involved. One man is dead because of him, and his life now is simple and easily thrown into a bag at any hint of danger— until he meets Hunter and he no longer wants to run.

Forced into a hostage situation, buried passion explodes in the aftermath, and sex in the supply closet brings their hearts back to life. Tentatively, step by step, they begin to explore a relationship together until the past catches up with Shawn.

Review: Let me tell you, this book hit all my buttons. I love plot, hot sex, and realistic characters acting in an adult way. Hitting Black Ice had all this in spades, and more. I hate to give more away than what’s already in the summary, but there are some fabulous twists and turns. Hunter has a past that haunts him, but the author manages to handle his backstory with a deft hand, writing his baggage in a way that adds to his character, not subtracts from it. That is SO HARD to find.

As a love interest, Shawn is hot, alluring, and darkly mysterious by turns. There was enough to him in the beginning that i could see why Hunter fell head over heels, yet  enough held back that kept up the tension in the plot really, really well (without coming off as convoluted).

I mentioned this above, but what impressed the hell out of me was how the author placed the characters between a rock and a hard place, and had them handle it like you’d realistically expect someone to do. Nothing was overblown, or underplayed. Nothing tore me out of the pages or made me think, “Hey, a real person doesn’t actually react like that.” And there were some really intense, fun, action scenes. The adrenaline junkie in me cheered a lot.

The dialog was snappy, and the minor characters… well. Not to give anything away, but a certain FBI agent stole every scene he was in.

Finally, while the ending itself was satisfying, there was definitely room for a continuation. I will definitely check out a book two, should one be published. (HINT.)

So as you can tell, I really enjoyed this read. This book made my afternoon, and I give it all the stars.

Hitting Black Ice will be available from Loose ID Tuesday December 2nd.

Second Skin is out now!

That’s right! Second Skin has been officially released into the wild. As usual, I’m a mix between proud and anxious and… hungry? Huh. Anyway, though this is the second book I’ve had published, it’s the first I wrote. I’m proud to say that I took a lot of chances with the plot and the concept, and I think it works.  I’ll let you be the judge. :D

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Shane Kalman has looked forward to exchanging military life for a civvy job where he could freely be out of the closet, but the position he lands is nothing like he imagined.

He didn’t plan to work undercover for a corrupt detective agency, much less gathering dirt on the city’s most dangerous crime boss. And he sure as heck didn’t expect to have his mind temporarily switched with a tabby cat in order to do it.

His fellow agent, Jamison Rees, is a charmer and sometimes a German shepherd, but Shane doesn’t need animal instincts to know that he’s hiding something. When the job goes south and Shane’s brother becomes a target for the crime boss’s wrath, all evidence points to a mole in the detective agency. A dog may be man’s best friend, but is he a cat’s? Can Shane trust Jamison at all?

 

Order it here:

Musa Publishing

Amazon

 If you are a reviewer with a blog and would like a reader’s copy, please get in touch with me using the contact form.

Second Skin Cover Reveal!

Here it is! Kelly Shorten, the cover artist at Musa, has done a fine job with the cover for Second Skin. I’m excited to show it off, so here it is!

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Shane Kalman looked forward to exchanging military life for a civvy job where he could freely be out of the closet, but the position he lands is nothing like he imagined. He didn’t plan to work undercover for a corrupt detective agency, much less gathering dirt on the city’s most dangerous crime boss. And he sure as heck didn’t expect to have his mind temporarily switched with a tabby cat in order to do it.

His fellow agent, Jamison Rees, is a charmer and sometimes a German shepherd, but Shane doesn’t need animal instincts to know that he’s hiding something. When the job goes south and Shane’s brother becomes a target for the crime boss’s wrath, all evidence points to a mole in the detective agency. A dog may be man’s best friend, but is he a cat’s? Can Shane trust Jamison at all?

Second Skin will be available from Musa Publishing December 13th.

Good NaNo news everyone!

Thanks to this year’s NaNoWriMo, I’ve finished the first draft of my still untitled dragon shifter story. I have several titles in mind, none of the especially good, so I’ll probably post a poll later and let the power of the crowd decide. Anyway, it’s going to be a long novel — the current estimate is at 65-70k  — and I swear it’s as much of a love letter to Yosemite as a love story between the two characters.

Arrest Me Not is at 15k and rising. Untitled Dragon Shifter took over my head for most of NaNoWriMo, but Grant’s story is coming along. Unless a promising subplot hits me, it’ll probably end up around 35k, which is a little shorter than Touch Me Not. But hey, it’ll be less expensive too. :)

In other, OTHER great news, Second Skin’s awesome cover will be debuting tomorrow. Stay tuned….