Normally I save my thoughts about the narration of the audiobook to the end of the review. But since I almost gave Flesh and Blood a 3 star rating based on the narration I going to talk about it first.
Abby Craden's narration of the main characters was pretty good and her "reading" voice (non dialogue narration) was good. Where I had a problem with the narration was her choices for A LOT of the secondary characters more to the point the minority characters. For example Katsumi is an Asian vampire and Craden's narration of her sounded like siamese cats from Lady and the Tramp. I had that song "We are Siamese if You Please" stuck in my head whenever Katsumi can on scene.
Another character I had problem with was Doc. I read the first book, Blood Rights and I didn't either remember or picked up on the fact that he is Africain American but listing to Carden's voice for him I thought, is Doc black? So I asked my two read along co-hosts that recently read Blood Rights and they were not sure either. I looked him up on the House of Comarre website and saw a picture of the character. Yep, he's Africain American. But I didn't enjoy the stereo-type voice that the narrator gave him; she made him sound like a street thug mixed with a white raper (Vanilla Ice). I thought he would say Yo-Yo at any moment.
I was so focused on how much I disliked the narration of the minority characters that it took me out of the story many times. But I thought it was unfair to lower my rating of the writing that Kristen Painter brought to life. It's just a case where I will read the rest of the series instead of listening. It happens.
Ok now that my rant about the narration of the audiobook is over I'll talk about the book.
Despite my dislike of the narration I did enjoy Flesh and Blood (points to the 4 Mac Halos).
It has been a year and half since I read Blood Rights and I forgot some of the finer points of the characters and world so it took me a little while to get back into the swing of things. Normally it's not a problem to pick up a series after that time frame but the House of Comarre series is a very detailed and complex world that I recommend you reading the books close together.
Kristen Painter has written a very rich world with complex characters. I had a clue it would be on of those series when I saw the glossary at the front Blood Rights. With the melting pot of supernatural creatures; Fae, Fallen Angles, Varcolai (shifters), ghosts, Comarré and vampires you won't get bored.
Chrysabelle is still trying to fit into a world where she is not a part of the Comarré lifestyle. She's out on her own working with Mal, a vampire. Which is unheard of. Comarré are pretty much vampire's in-live blood servants, they are not equals. But after the events in Blood Rights the two are working toward a common goal. Kill the wicked, bitch vamp of the west, Tatiana.
Well doing so, Chrysabelle and Mal's feelings for each other hit a new level. But things get even more complicated when Creek, a human that is part of a secret supe hunting group called the Kubai Mata. But Creek and Mal are sworn to protect Chrysabelle while fighting over who gets her personal attention.
Then there's Doc's storyline. He is working towards bring Fiona the ghost back. Fiona has been Doc's friend and slowly turned into his love interest and just when things were looking up for the two in the last book, something rips them apart. So Doc is working to fix things and also find a way to break his curse. You see he's a Varcolai (shifter). His true animal form is a black jaguar but because of his curse he can only shift into a house cat. Which we get more back ground into Doc's past that lets us know why/how he was cursed.
I feel like I'm rambling with this review so I'm going to stop and sum up that I really enjoyed this 2nd installment in the House of Comarré series by Kristen Painter and I look forward to READING this next one, Bad Blood. I want to see how the gang deals with the minor cliff hanger at the end of this one.
Nothing like coming home from college to enjoy Christmas with your extend family full of vampires.
I hope we get more of GiGi and her mystery man.
This was a sweet and steamy listen about two strangers meeting in an elevator.
Both characters were likable and believable.
Narrator was really good and kind of reminded me of Renée Raudman.
I'm be checking out more from Laura Kaye and the narrator, Erin Jones.
All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire is a fun and sexy paranormal listen.
The narrator, Coleen Marlo did a pretty good job with the narration but I found her accents for the male character slip from time to time. A Scottish brogue would change to something that sounded Russian then back to Scottish. And I didn’t care for her voice for Phineas I thought it was cheesy and a little racist or stereotyping of a black man, which changed my narration rating from a B to a B-. I think this book/series would be a great fit for Robert Petkoff, who narrates Kresely Cole’s IAD series. If he had narrated I could easily see my rating for the narration go to an A.
All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire was a fun paranormal romance listen with just enough touches of the holiday season to put me in the mood for my very own Scottish Vampire for Christmas. The plot and characters are you typical PNR series format. Couple meets and there’s a push and pull with the romance to finally end in a HEA. Sparks weaves humor and just enough action/danger to the romance. This is the 1st series where I didn’t start with the 1st book in the series but like most PNR series I was fine. I was not lost in the plot since it was about one couple. I’m sure the other couples mentioned are in the earlier books of the series so I will go back and start from the beginning and I’m bet I’ll see Ian, the yummy Scot vamp before he grows a few inches (LOL).
While I was not a huge fan of the narration of some of the characters, I enjoyed All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire and I will be listening to the earlier books in the series. Each book has a different narrator so it will be interesting to see which ones I like and which ones I don’t.
Will I continue this series? Yes. I will continue this series by starting with the 1st book.
Would I read this author again? Yes. Sparks does a great job of mixing sexy and humor.
Similar Books/Series: Immortals After Dark by Kresley Cole
Cole is a master at delivering a dark and interesting dystopian world and I can’t get enough of it.
“Cannibals need love too.”
“Death wants to gank me. Must be Tuesday.”
Emma Galvin has the prefect voice for this series. She has a young and smokey voice that allows her to pull of both the female and male characters.
What I liked:
I’m not a huge YA reader and one of the things I love about Endless Knight is that it doesn’t feel like YA. Cole weaves a very compelling story of romance, action and mythology around the arcana to satisfy even non YA readers. Even though this world Cole has build is very dark she lightens it with great secondary characters and their snarky humor and she pulls off the YA romance without all the angst you get with some YA books. Sure there is a love triangle forming in Endless Knight but it’s a believable one that you would find in an adult novel.
Cole also does an amazing job with making me fall in love with the “evil” guy. And that’s hard to take a character that is seen as evil and turn him around to where you sympathize with him and want him to have a HEA.
The Arcana game is in full swing and Cole imagination is limitless and I’m in awe of the world and characters she has crafted.
What I didn’t like:
Having to wait for the next book.
I’ll still be thinking about this book for a few more weeks.
Will I continue this series: Yes. A thousand times yes!
Would I read this author again:
YES! I love her adult PNR series, Immortals After Dark and now this series. I will read ANYTHING that has Cole’s name on it!
JENKS!! Got to love a pixie that uses Tink (Tinkerbell) as a curse.
Rachel and Jenks hit the road in order to save one of Jenks’ sons. Oh and Nick (Pfft).
The last time Rachel saw Nick he was leaving town and wouldn’t tell her the whole reason he was leaving. Jenks’ son, Jax was living at Nick’s place to take care of his plants while he was out-of-town.
Jenks and the rest of his pixie family left the church that Rachel and Ivy share as their home because of a fight he and Rachel got into during the last book, Every Which Way but Dead. It’s been a long winter without the pixies around and Rachel is sick of Jenks not talking to her. So when they get word from Jax that Nick is missing and Jax needs help they drop their difference and hit the road to save them.
In true Rachel form this is no simple road trip. There are vampires and werewolves involved and Rachel fighting for her life but she has her trusty backup, Jenks. And Jenks is very much front and center in a big way.
We didn’t get to see of Trent this time about but my fingers are crossed that he will show up in the next installment, For a Few More Demons. Which that title has me a little nervous. I’m thinking we may get to see more of Al.
Rachel is a kick ass witch but at the same time she boarders on “too stupid to live” but in a funny and endearing way. With the help of her friends, Rachel learns why she makes some of the dumb choices in her personal life. And knowing is half the battle, right?
Jenks is a cocky and snarky pixie that’s always there for his partners Rachel and Ivy. He would die to save Rachel and his family. And I think he feels the same about Ivy but he hides it.
Ivy has it hard being stuck behind wanting to be Rachel’s friend and partner to wanting more from Rachel. Not to mention she is trying to fight off some personal demons.
Nick… is a turd and Rachel’s human ex-boyfriend.
Kisten is a sexy vamp who is dating Rachel and seems to really care for her. He is also Ivy’s ex and friend.
I’m not sure if it’s Gavin’s narration or Harrison’s writing that keeps me coming back. I think it’s a little of both. I can’t picture myself reading this series now that I’m hooked on Gavin’s voice for the series. She does an amazing job for all the characters. Her voice for Rachel and Jenks is the best.
JENKS!! One of the best secondary characters ever! And he summed up my feelings about Nick in this quote… “No one cares little green turds about you.”
Will I continue the series:
Hell ya! It gets better with each book. I’m really enjoying the snarky humor and the building relationships between the characters.
Eye of the Tempest was a little on the weird side. It felt like a bridge book; connecting the previous book and the next book. It’s a turning point in Jane’s life and I think it sets the tone for the rest of the series.
The weird part is the octopus-like creature that is hiding under Rockabill that has a powerful connection with Jane. Blondie is around a lot in this installment to help Jane with her inner and outer journey in becoming the champion. Actually most of the book is about Jane, Blondie and the creature. Definitely a different feel from the other books. But I felt like it was necessary in order to have a few questions answered even if it only made other questions pop up.
Even though Eye of the Tempest had a very different feel to it and it was not my favorite in the series, Jane True is still going strong in my heart and I’m a little nervous for the next two books. I’ve heard they have some tough moments. But when there looks to be a supe war in the gang’s every near future that is to be expected.
Now that it looks like Jane and Anyan might be moving to having a future together I can’t wait to see how that part of the story ends.
I was so freaking excited when I found out that Khristine Hvam was narrating the rest of the series. She has breathed new life into the Jane True series. Peeler’s writing is great but the narration for books 1 -3 was not letting it shine. But the team of Hvam and Peeler is the right fit for bring Jane and crew to live for audio listeners.
Not your "classic" zombies but still an interesting concept.
Why I Listen
I've had Working Stiff on my TBR since it's release day and after listening to a sample of the audio, the narration sounded like one I would enjoy. And I was right. The story and narration both kept me entertain. Julia Whelan get a great job with the voices and timing of the narration. I've already purchased the next book on audio.
Bryn Davis has the worst first day on a job ever.... She dies and then comes back as a "zombie".
After serving in the military and dealing with dead bodies, Bryn thought she would be a good match in the postion as the new funeral director at Fairview Mortuary. But little did she know that her sales training was not going to help her when she stumbles upon a secret side business her new boss is running from the basement of the mortuary.
Bryn quickly finds herself wrapped up in government and corporate red tape and plans to take over the world, while still having a little time for romance.
Issue(s) I Had
The only real issue I had with Working Stiff is that I had a hard time believing that Bryn, who was over in Iraq for 4 years would be so "helpless" and naive at times. I'm hoping after the events toward the end of the story that we get a tougher Bryn in the next book, Two Week's Notice.
Will I Continue the Series?
Yes. I enjoyed the world that Caine has created and I look forward to seeing what's next for Bryn.
Looking for Something Similar?
White Trash Zombie series by Diana Rowland
Still loving this world!
The Set Up:
Gage was outted to his friends as a warlock in Angel’s Ink and now not only is Gage in danger of the White Tower but so is his friends and family.
Reaver, the dark fae mobster in Low Town is blackmailing Gage with the threat of doing harm to Bronx so that he has to work for him. So not only does Gage have to worry about the witches and warlocks he has the glorified thug on his back too.
Then there’s Trixie’s pass that comes to town and the Elves’ of the Summer Court is threatening to take Trixie back home so she can be the King’s baby maker.
Gage is doing is best to run his tattoo shop, The Asylum, keep himself alive and protecting his loved ones. All while trying to solve the Elves’ of the Summer Court’s baby making problem. It’s just another Tuesday, what could go wrong?
Gage really steps up his game in the magic using way. He already owes one year of his life because he killed someone with magic in the last book. How many years can he rack up?
Issue(s) I had:
NONE! I’m loving this world and these characters.
It took me a little while to get into Urie’s narration of the first book, Angel’s Ink. But now I can’t see anyone else doing the narration. He does a great job with pinch, timing and he is Gage! I still wish he would do something a little different with Trixie’s voice but she is the only character that’s not perfect IMO.
I’ve really enjoyed seeing a story through Gage’s POV. I’m going to seek out more UF series with male main characters. I think I’ll revisit the Sandman Slim series and give Harry Dresden a go while I want for the next book in The Asylum Tales series by Drake.
Will I continue this series?
YES! I can’t wait for the next book. Really, when’s the next one coming out? I know that Dead Man’s Deal was just release but I need more Gage!!
Looking for Recommendations
Do you guys have any favorite series with a male main character? Let me know in the comments.
Jane gets to take a trip across the pond to Great Britain but it’s no vacation. While she and her libido would love nothing more than to hold up in a posh hotel room with the bad puppy, Anyan, tasting wine and stinky cheeses and doing it doggy style they are on a mission.
I’ll stop right here and say that I miss the fun and light feel of books 1 & 2. Jane and the group have been thrown into some serious and dark places since book 3 and it only gets darker. Sure there’s still some funny and snarky moments but I guess with the gang being away from Rockabill the feeling of the series is definitely different. And the whole creature thing and Jane’s connection to it has me going uh?!
So the things I did like about Tempest’s Fury is that we get to know Anyan on a personal level. Like his history and how he feels about Jane. I really think Anyan and Jane make a great couple. It took so long to get them there and I wish the two could really catch a break and just be able to have a quiet weekend getaway. Maybe after they save the world from the Red Queen and the White King.
Now I’m off to start the audio of Tempest Reborn and I can’t wait to see how Peeler brings this series to an end. Especially after that (I saw it coming) cliffhanger.
Ok. I stayed away from this series because it’s been compared to 50 Shades of Grey. No I’m not read 50 Shades and I don’t see it in my future. So I can’t compare the two personally. So why did I listen? After being on a huge Urban Fantasy reading/listening kick I needed some smut in my reading life. After reading The Bawdy Book Blog‘s funny audio review on it I decided to give it a listen.
I didn’t have much knowledge about the characters or plot line going in. All I knew was the guy, Gideon was a billionaire and there was hot sex scenes. Some people have been calling it a BDSM book so I thought there might be some kink in it. But there was NO BDSM elements in this story. There was some reference to D/s but it was mostly talk and I don’t feel like I was listening to a D/s story.
This was the hardest book I’ve ever had to rate. Why? Because I have a love/hate relationship with it. Parts ripped my heart out and others have me rolling my eyes. And others have me reaching for a B.O.B. And Gideon went from hot to stalker to creepy and back to hot so many times I felt like I needed to go to therapy during the times I found him hot. Eva was too stupid to live at times and other times I could feel her pain.
First let me start off saying I’ve found another great narrator in Jill Redfield. I felt like I would have not be connected to the characters and story nearly as much if I didn’t listen to her narration of the story.
Second Sylvia Day has done an excellent job with the writing. She took two broken characters and thrown them together in a hot and dysfunctional way that broke my heart. I wanted to give both Eva and Gideon hugs and then I wanted to slap the shit out of them.
I have never been so emotionally drained while reading/listening to a book before.
Bottom line, Bared to You is a story where Lifetime TV meets Spice Channel. Under all the hot sex there are two complex characters brought to life with great writing and amazing narration. I will be giving the second book, Reflected in You a go on audio very soon.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.