Tag Archives: Black Dagger Brotherhood

Stacking the Shelves #5

18 Apr

Stacking The Shelvesl_thumb2Hosted by Tynga’s Reviews

Welcome back to Stacking the Shelves, a regular meme hosted by Tynga at Tynga’s Reviews. Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the latest books you have added to your shelves, physical or virtual.  This means you can include books you buy in store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts, and of course e-books! Here is my haul from this week.

Purchased from Audible

Purchased from Audible

Audible had a half-price sale on my entire wishlist, so of course I couldn’t let that pass. I purchased Endless Knight by Kresley Cole, Off the Grid by Faith Hunter, and pre-ordered One Night With You by Marie Force.

Approved from Netgalley

Approved from Netgalley

Netgalley approved my request for The One In My Heart, a new contemporary romance by Sherry Thomas.

Purchased from iBooks

Purchased from iBooks

While waiting to see if I’d won a competition for Catherine Robertson‘s new book, The Hiding Places – I think I was unsuccessful – I downloaded her free novella, May Day, from New Zealand iBooks. I also received my pre-order of Story of Son, by J.R. Ward.

Purchased from Amazon

Purchased from Amazon

My only other purchase this week was from Amazon, and was The Shadows by J.R. Ward.  I waited a couple of weeks for the price to come down before I bought this, purely because I’m not sure I’m going to like it once I start reading, based on all my friends’ reviews, and it would annoy me more if I had paid top dollar for it! The price had dropped by a third since its release day, so I think it was worth waiting.

Keep an eye out for my reviews of these in coming weeks. So what new books did you pick up this week? Let me know in the comments.

18 & Over Book Blogger Follow #13: (Cat)Fight Club!

15 Jun

18 & Over Book Blogger Follow is a weekly feature that runs over the weekend, hosted by Crystal from one of my favourite blog sites, Reading Between the Wines.

Question of the Week Fight club! Heroine Vs. Heroine. Pick your two favorite kick-ass book heroines and pit them against each other. Who would win?

Ooh, this is a good one! Well, the first name to come to mind is Cat Crawfield, of course, from the Night Huntress series by Jeaniene Frost, because it’s a cat fight and that’s her name! She’s a vamp, she has a kick-ass entourage (mmm… Bones, Spade, Ian, Vlad… *sigh*) and she doesn’t take anyone messing with her.

I would pit her against Payne, Vishous’s sister from J.R. Ward‘s the Black Dagger Brotherhood. She’s also a kick-ass vampire, is mad as hell, murdered her father and seriously injured King Wrath when they sparred together. She also has an awesome entourage of hot, lethal Brothers… *fans self*

In a fight, I think I’m gonna have to go with Payne. Cat would make too many wisecracks and Payne would just floor her with a roundhouse kick!

What do you reckon? Leave a comment below or link up HERE to follow the meme.

Cover reveal: Lover At Last by J.R. Ward

8 Jun

Here it is: the cover we have all been waiting for! J.R. Ward revealed Blay and Qhuinn’s book cover and title on her Facebook page today, and I think we can agree it is a winner 🙂 I particularly like that arm gripping the dagger 😉

There have been a few comments bemoaning the fact the cover doesn’t have two men on it, but Ward has said this:

“I do think it’s going to be important for people to realize the story’s going to be written as it comes (came) to me, and that they’re not getting special treatment either for or against them because of their sexuality- to me, this story has always been about Qhuinn coming around and accepting who he really is and who he really loves- so the title and the cover was always about him in my mind. This is not to dimish Blay or his journey or his role- not at all. And it is not a case of the book focusing solely on Qhuinn and ignoring Blay’s feelings (because he’s going to have some big issues to deal with, too.) I just think Qhuinn’s the one who’s fought against their HEA and is the one who has to travel the most to get there. If that makes any sense?”

Well, in any case, I’m eagerly anticipating the release of this, the 11th book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series, in about nine months’ time!

Lover Reborn, by J.R. Ward

20 Apr

Format: Kindle Edition, 671 pages
Published: March 27, 2012
Publisher: Penguin Group
Back cover blurb:
In the darkest corners of the night in Caldwell, New York, a conflict like no other rages. The city is home to a band of brothers born to defend their race: the warrior vampires of the Black Dagger Brotherhood.Now back in the Brotherhood – and unrecognisable as the vampire leader he once was – Tohrment is physically emaciated and heartbroken beyond despair. When he begins to see his beloved in his dreams – trapped in a cold, isolating netherworld – Tohr turns to a self-serving fallen angel in hopes of saving the one he has lost.When he’s told he must learn to love another to free his former mate, Tohr knows they are all doomed…Except then a female with a shadowed history begins to get through to him. Against the backdrop of the raging war with the lessers, and with a new clan of vampires vying for the Blind King’s throne, Tohr struggles between the buried past, and a very hot, passion-filled future… but can his heart let go and set all of them free?

My review:
I almost threw this on the floor when I had counted three mentions of the “peanut gallery” by the top of the third chapter. J.R. Ward needs some new stock phrases – that one’s getting really old.

The books itself was good, and I enjoyed it more than I expected to given my admiration of Wellsie. I’ve always liked Tohr and his growing relationship with No’One – later renamed Autumn – is engrossing and hot, but halfway through the book I realised I maybe didn’t like Tohr so much any more. He was doing things for all the wrong reasons, and I agreed with Lassiter that maybe he had been led astray by the angel. The “surprise” with her at the Fade ceremony wasn’t a surprise to me at all, as I had been saying in my mind for a long time “but she died…” I liked the ending, though, despite the lack of any obvious mating/bonding scent between them.

The Xhex/JM storyline was the least interesting for me. They’ve never been my favourite couple but I will admit to seeing a softer side of Xhex around her mother. That was nice.

This book did raise a lot of questions, though, which is why I have to take half a cupcake off. For a start, why doesn’t Phury have a better idea of where the Chosen are? He can’t just let them roam free around the countryside. I suggest a clocking-in system where they punch a card to let him know where they’re going. Layla has got to be one of the dimmest lightbulbs ever. I’m not sure whether I like her storyline but I can see how it will lead to a HEA for Qhuinn. Xcor will have to be redeemed in a MAJOR way somewhere along the line, though – I can’t see Tohr killing him now.

Another question: how does Wrath know when people enter the room and don’t say anything? Or know when his wife frowns in her sleep? Either these Brothers smell pretty bad or maybe it’s his bonding to Beth that makes him aware of her movements, but please Ms Ward, if he’s blind then he should be blind. Unable to see.

Tohr said bonded males sometimes cheated on their spouses – that struck me as completely against everything we’ve been told so far about the bonding process. It did make me wonder whether Tohr could bond to Autumn because his mother chose Wellsie for him in an arrangement made before she was even born. All the other Brothers chose their shellans of their own free will, and in the end that was how Tohr chose Autumn.

The timeline was hard to follow. It appeared to start straight after Lover Mine, but Manny was already working in the clinic so it was like the events of Lover Unleashed had been completely ignored. Payne was only mentioned in crowd scenes, which surprised me given No’One was meant to be serving her. They never even visited together once. In fact, I missed a lot of the other characters. Many were mentioned in passing or got one line, and that wasn’t enough for me.

Still, I’m looking forward to the next book, with Qhuinn and Blay’s story. I hope Ward does it justice.

My rating: 4.5/5 (It’s still the BDB!)

18 & Over Book Blogger Follow #5

6 Apr

18 & Over Book Blogger Follow is a weekly feature that runs over the weekend, hosted by Crystal from one of my favourite blog sites, Reading Between the Wines.

Question of the Week: Have you read a romance or erotic novel with an M/M or F/F relationship in it? If so, did you enjoy the read? And if you haven’t, is that something you would read in the future?

I don’t have any problem with same-sex relationships in books. In fact, I’ve been quite surprised by my reaction at times 😉

I’m a big fan of Qhuinn in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series, and can’t wait to see him get his HEA, and of course V and Butch are another couple with more than just a friendship.

I guess the most obvious M/M series I have started to read is the PsyCops series by Jordan Castillo Price. I’ve read the first two books, Among the Living  and Criss Cross, and I really enjoyed the humour and the relationship between Victor and Jacob. I gave them both four cupcakes, and will be reading the rest of the series when I can. You can read my reviews on Good Reads HERE and HERE.

I love Lord John Grey, Diana Gabaldon‘s character in the Outlander series and his own spin-offs, and I also really love the relationship between Gabe and Colton in the Supernova saga by C.L. Parker. Gabe is just hilarious, and I’d love him for a best friend 🙂

Honourable mention must go to Laura Kaye‘s Just Gotta Say – not so much M/M as M/M/M/F… yep. Good times 😉

Oddly, I can’t recall reading much F/F. I guess I’m all about the hot boys!

What about you? Leave a comment below or link up HERE to follow the meme.

Lover Unleashed, by J.R. Ward

13 Apr

Format: Kindle Edition, 489 pages
Published: March 29, 2011
Publisher: Penguin Group
Back cover blurb:
Payne, twin sister of Vishous, is cut from the same dark, warrior cloth as her brother: A fighter by nature, and a maverick when it comes to the traditional role of Chosen females, there is no place for her on the Far Side… and no role for her on the front lines of the war, either. 

When she suffers a paralyzing injury, human surgeon Dr. Manuel Manello is called in to treat her as only he can- and he soon gets sucked into her dangerous, secret world. Although he never before believed in things that go bump in the night- like vampires- he finds himself more than willing to be seduced by the powerful female who marks both his body and his soul.

As the two find so much more than an erotic connection, the human and vampire worlds collide … just as a centuries old score catches up with Payne and puts both her love and her life in deadly jeopardy.

My review:
Payne and Manny’s story was so sweet, and the smexing was very hot! Loved it. When Manny was first in the books I suspected he was Butch’s father, just because he was a doctor and … oh, I dunno. The thought crossed my mind. But now that his background is out there I hope Ward does more with it. I would love to see him become … more. (Trying not to spoil, here.) 

I agree with some of the other reviews I’ve seen that say it’s more V’s story than Payne’s, but I didn’t mind that at all. I did feel a little squicky in the scene with Butch, but after a brief walk away I got through that chapter and realised it was necessary for the story to move forward. Ward knows what she’s doing, so I always have faith, even if I was really disappointed with V for a time.I think he’s still my favourite brother, though.

There wasn’t enough of the other characters for my liking. No Tohr (but I’m SO glad he will be the next book!) and not enough Quinn and Blay, but again I have faith that story will end how we all want it to. Ward also occasionally annoys me with her pet phrases; in this book she overused “kibbitz”, especially in the first part of the book, and at one point twice in one sentence! And if I had a dollar for every time she uses “peanut gallery” I would be very rich 🙂 I still love her, though, and am not sure how I will survive waiting a whole year for Tohr’s book. Let’s hope the novellas come out in the meantime.

My rating: 5/5. It’s the WARDen – I’m only ever gonna give it five stars!

The Monster (Price) At The End Of This Book

6 Sep

I recently had a bad experience buying a book from a local major retail chain, and it made me realise that I mostly shop online for a couple of very good reasons.

For two years now I have bought all my books through The Book Depository in the UK (let’s call it TBD for short). My husband discovered them after ordering some hardcover Tintin books through Amazon UK, only to discover they were being dispatched via the Book Depository. He looked up their website and found he could have got them cheaper buying directly, as the Book Depository offers free international shipping.

Their site has books I find hard to source here in New Zealand, and often has them earlier than we can get them. They are much cheaper and take about a week to arrive in my letterbox, which I find much more convenient than having to drive to town and pay $4 an hour for parking.

However, for my birthday my brother-in-law gave me a voucher for a major New Zealand book retailer, so I decided to use it two weeks ago to buy the second book in the Hunger Games trilogy, Catching Fire.

I bought the first book, The Hunger Games, through the Book Depository for £5.42 ($NZ11.82), delivered to my door. Catching Fire was $NZ24.99, so I got no change from my $25 voucher. Sure, it was essentially free, but I had to pay my petrol and parking money.

However, it turned out to be a false economy when I reached page 234 and found it jumped to page 283 – 48 pages missing! As a result I couldn’t finish the book at the weekend and had to wait until last Monday to return the book to the store, meaning more petrol and parking money. The staff member happily replaced my copy with the last one they had in the store – its Wellington flagship on the Golden Mile of Lambton Quay – but it got me thinking about how I had never received a dud book from my online retailer.

I decided to conduct a quick price comparison in that store and along the Quay at the other major book retailer. Coincidentally, they are both owned by the same parent company, but often have vastly different stock.

Example 1: The Sookie Stackhouse books by Charlaine Harris. At the New Zealand stores, paperbacks are $NZ30.99 each. I bought Club Dead last month from the Book Depository for £4.53 ($NZ9.91).

The same book at Amazon US is $US7.99 plus a minimum $US9.98 shipping (total $NZ25.48) or the Kindle version is $US10.82 ($NZ15.34). At Amazon UK it is £3.97 plus a minimum £8.78 shipping (total $NZ27.89).

Example 2: An Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon. Paperback in Wellington $NZ32.99.

TBD £5.99 ($NZ13.10).

Amazon US $US11.56 plus a minimum $US9.98 shipping ($NZ30.54) or Kindle $US14.40 ($NZ20.47).

Amazon UK £5.59 plus a minimum £8.78 shipping ($NZ31.43).

Example 3: Innocent, by Scott Turow. Hardback in Wellington $NZ43.99.

TBD £13.48 ($NZ29.48).

Amazon US $US18.47 plus a minimum $US9.98 shipping ($NZ40.43) or Kindle $US11.99 ($NZ17.04).

Amazon UK £9.00 plus a minimum £8.78 shipping ($NZ38.89).

Example 4: Dark Lover, by J.R. Ward. Paperback in Wellington $NZ24.99 at one store and $NZ26.99 at the other.

TBD £4.82 ($NZ10.54).

Amazon US $US7.99 plus a minimum $US9.98 shipping ($NZ25.54).

Amazon UK £5.00 plus a minimum £8.78 shipping ($NZ30.14).

Example 5: Dr Who: The Writer’s Tale – The Final Chapter, by Russell T. Davies and Benjamin Cook. Paperback took several months to get to New Zealand, where it retails for $NZ64.99.

I bought mine at Christmastime from TBD for £12.74 ($NZ27.87).

Not available from Amazon US, but Amazon UK £8.49 plus a minimum £8.78 shipping ($NZ37.77).

Example 6: A New Zealand author. The Jane Blonde girl spy book series for kids, by Jill Marshall. In New Zealand $NZ19.99 each.

TBD £5.39 ($NZ11.79).

Prices range on Amazon US between $US5.21 and $US8 plus a minimum $US9.98 shipping ($NZ21.59 to $NZ25.55). Kindle editions are $US7.90 ($NZ11.23).

Amazon UK between £1.00 and £4.99 plus a minimum £8.78 shipping ($NZ21.39 to $NZ30.12).

New Zealand book prices are expected to go up again on October 1 when GST rises from 12.5 percent to 15 percent.

Retailers are often in the news complaining about how their sector isn’t recovering from the recession, but when online retailers are vastly cheaper and so incredibly convenient it’s hard to see how the bricks and mortar bookstores can survive. With e-books starting to take off here too, there are even fewer reasons for me to shop on Lambton Quay.