I love this series and the story was absolutely fantastic but WHO IN THEIR RIGHT MIND DECIDED SWITCHING NARRATORS WAS A GOOD IDEA? Can you tell I'm hacked? The timing sucked. The character's were horribly portrayed to the point that she used her female intonations for male characters at some points. I mean REALLY? The whole freakin world of listeners loves Hillary Huber doing these so what...I know...let's get someone else to do it who has no freaking clue! Sorry...I'm ranting and I'll get control of myself at any minute...really....I will...
It sure wasn't the narration. The story was brilliant but I'm just as invested in my listening experience as I am in the story itself and right at the moment...Yeah...As is typical with these stories there is a wonderful blend of action, adventure, hot romance and a healthy dose of humor. Of course, a great deal of the humor is lost due to the timing of the narration and the narrator's lack of experience with the characters. If you are new to the series, you'll want to at least start with the first Horseman so that you can truly enjoy the story. Better yet, head back to the beginning of Demonica because you will want to understand the world and the players.
HACKED. ME. OFF. I hate that I'm so freaking mad about this because I can tell that Erin Bennett doesn't suck as a narrator. In fact, I'd probably like her in any other circumstance but you don't jump in with a new narrator in the middle of the series unless you know said narrator can seamlessly carry on the roles or greatly improve on them. They were already perfect..so..... It's not as bad as Renee Raudman's performance of the 3rd story of the Demonica books. In fact, by comparison, it's extremely tolerable.
I think you'll find that my extreme reaction, as noted above, was to the narration.
Don't take my whining and ranting to mean you shouldn't get the story. The world Larissa Ione has created and the wonderful, rich, funny and sexy hot characters will keep you coming back for more. If you're just starting, don't forget you need to go back to Demonica. Once you start, you'll be uploading new stories so fast it will look like you've cashed out the credits!
The story is good-very good even. This is one of those very unfortunate times when I have to recommend that you purchase the story in written form rather than waste a credit.
The narrator uses a slow, monotone approach to the entire story with only mild inflection when speaking in character. The only thing I can compare it to is a high school class where the teacher makes the students read out loud. The narrator sounds bored with the material and quite frankly like she just couldn't give a ____ about even trying. Her tone doesn't change whether the moment calls for passion, anger, joy, despair. Can you tell I'm frustrated?
At least do this, listen to the preview. If you can handle it, carry on. If not, get the book in digital form because it's a pretty good read.
Not going to take you through a recap of the summary but I will say that this is one of the best shifter stories (series) I have ever come across! Let's all just jump right onto the honest train and admit that there are a grand many shifter stories that are just a tad bit lacking in..well...plot. This particular series is scorching hot with one hell of a story line. Go ahead, spend the credit. You won't be disappointed!
I haven't scanned the other reviews for this title so I'm not certain what everyone else is saying. I do know that in cases where the alpha male is extremely alpha, there are usually one or two reviewers that are offended and find the male's behavior abusive. If you are one of those reviewers, do not buy this title. This male isn't just an 'alpha male', he (and the heroine) both have very animal like behaviors in this story. "No" doesn't mean "no" in this particular tale. The female wolf requires that he fight her for the right to mate with her. I'm just going on about this because I know someone is going to misunderstand and misconstrue the characters and I hope to keep someone with triggers or who is sensitive to these issues from having a problem with this story.
If you, like me, read the book prior to downloading this audio version, you are going to think you've lost your mind that you purchased the 'unabridged' version but a very memorable, scorching hot scene that includes ALL of the guys is missing as is any reference to that scene. I don't know where the censorship came from and the audio is not lacking without it but it was weird to be expecting it and it not be there. Even the conversations earlier on about sharing were missing so I guess the entire concept was pulled from the story. Like I said, it doesn't hurt the story but I was just expecting it so it threw me off.
As for the narration...SPOT ON PERFECT! Anyone who has read my reviews knows that I get a little crazy over bad narration. Ok, a lot crazy. I mean really, that's why I pay for the audio version after all. But Jill Redfield did an amazing job and I look forward to hearing more of her work along the way.
So five stars all around. So worth the credit!!!
Exiled is one of those titles that may have come off better in print than in audio. It is an erotica title, which is coming to mean mostly erotica with a dash of plot. If you go into the book with that attitude, you won't be disappointed.
Spoiler: The plot goes something like this. Girl catches attention of Prince, who is a hedonist. Girl has sick mom and no means. Prince sweeps in and pays for everything, including girls education and mom's healthcare telling girl to come to him when called. Girl gets called by Prince to come to remote island paradise where she is cherished and adored by Prince and his four best men. Slight hiccup in bliss, Prince fixes everything. HEA.
As I said above, if I had looked at the title as erotica only, I might not have been disappointed. I have become used to Maya Banks having really good story lines so maybe it was the input of the secondary author that made this title lacking. Also, I absolutely can't stand breathy porn star narration and this narrator gives it in spades. It's cheap, cheesy and destroys any hope of the book being anything other than trashy. Had the narrator not sounded as though she was using this as an interview for a sex line, it might have been a bit better.
If you're going to buy it, get it while it's cheap and on sale. DO NOT WASTE A CREDIT!
This is the second title in Callahan's Dragonfury series. If you are a J. R. Ward fan, and read the first title, you may have been ready to stand on the rooftops and scream "PLAGARISM!" Ms. Callahan's first attempt was wrought with style, plot and character development that was not simply reminiscent of J. R. Ward, it was an almost exact replica-aside from a very interesting story line.
This title; however, shows that Ms. Callahan may just well have what it takes to develop her OWN world, characters, etc. It isn't 100% purged of all things 'Wardian' but it's getting there and the story line is very good! I do recommend making your way through the first title, if you have not already, so that you begin to learn about the characters. If you haven't read any J. R. Ward, it won't bother you in the least and you'll likely enjoy the title far more than those of us who would give just about anything to have our own hellren!
I'm, admittedly, very critical of the narration of audio books. It is, after all, the main component of why many of us listen, as opposed to or in addition to reading books. The narrator for this title isn't bad; however, his performance isn't what it could be. I tend to blame a lack of direction or editing for the majority of the issues I have with narration. He tends to make his female voices come across a bit whimpering at times, lessening the strength of the character. The words, thoughts and actions of the character don't match the tone of voice and it lends to making the character come across as weak. Also, he has this habit of isolating the word "and" that is so bloody annoying that it drives me crazy. It can't be that the author writes "and" that much more than other authors. I wish that we had the ability to reply to reviews with Audible because I would love to know if anyone else finds this particular habit of the narrator to drive them to distraction!
All in all, I am pleased that I continued the series in spite of my initial issues with the first novel. I would recommend this title 'AND' even though I've already read the next book 'AND' will be reviewing it shortly, I can already say that I look forward to her future world development.
I read Maya Banks' Colters' series some time ago and greatly enjoyed it. If you read many 'poly' stories, you will note that the majority fall into either the full on erotica (smut) category or erotica with a plot. I would categorize the Colters' stories as falling into the latter category-for the most part and would fully admit to having enjoyed the series.
If your feminist side absolutely cringes at the damsel in distress being saved by the alpha male(s) in a story, don't bother reading this title or any others in the series. I believe that whatever a person's views are on the matter are their own, and shouldn't be inflicted upon those that feel differently. I simply point it out so that there is no confusion before purchasing and/or reason for complaint thereafter.
The Colter brothers, like their fathers before them, believe that there is one woman out there who is meant to be theirs and that they will know it when they find her. They find her, half frozen, outside of their home, during a snow storm.
The plot is predictable but enjoyable. The narration greatly detracts from the story and makes it somehow 'less' than the experience of reading the title. If you read any of my other reviews, you will see that I have a real issue with poor narration and the lack of proper editing or production guidance. As an example, Holly is from the west coast, yet because the lead males in the story live on a ranch and ride horses, the narrator gave her a cheesy, country accent. The accent he landed on the guys wasn't much better. I wasn't aware that Colorado cowboys automatically gained a bad west Texas accent just because they landed their butts in a saddle but at least that inflection made sense. His narration actually does make Holly irritating and pathetic, which is a feeling I did not get when I read the story beforehand. It's actually such a detractor in this case that I would almost recommend reading this title instead of listening.
An extended epilogue is available for download (free I believe on Amazon) as an e-book. The title is 'Colters' Wife' and it picks up a few months after the end of 'Colters' Woman.' The next title in the series is 'Colters' Lady' and I believe that it is now or soon will be available on Audible. It involves, you guessed it, the three sons of Holly, Adam, Ethan and Ryan. I have not checked to see if it is the same narrator on the next book but, if it is, hopefully someone has provided some direction this time.
As always, Hillary Huber delivers spot on narration, which makes an already great story a perfect listening experience. I still believe that she could refrain from mentioning the name of the character (from the extensive list of characters) she is representing and the audience would be able to tell like they were listening to an old friend on the phone. She's that good and that consistent.
The previous Midnight Breed novel provided so much closure that it seemed as though we might be at an end of the series. I expected a spinoff series might be in the works but had not thought there could be such seamless continuation, much less so with a two decade time jump. Lara Adrian just proved me oh so wrong.
This story centers on Mira, who was still a mere child in the last book and Kellan, who was still a teenager when we last met him. Mira's sweet, hopeful nature has been warped by the loss of the Breed male she would have called mate. She's now a warrior in her own right and out for vengence.
There's a new threat on the horizion (well, at least one) and a whole new generation of Breed warriors prepared to fight along side the one's we know and love. I loved it, loved it, loved it and can't wait for more!
I purchased both this title and the second one as part of a sale. I had read other reviews that indicated that there seemed to be quite a bit of J. R. Ward style writing or "branding" and I love J. R. Ward so I thought, why not?
I find myself completely torn as to how I feel about this book and this author. On the one hand, the story is great and highly entertaining. On the other, I'm surprised the woman hasn't been sued by J. R. Ward. It isn't just a similarity, it's an absolute copying of style, vocabulary and race personality. It was like reading really excellent fan fiction based on the Black Dagger Brotherhood even though the supernatural race is different. Note that I said "really excellent" fan fiction, because it would be but it hardly qualifies as original. Maybe that's what this started out being...I have no clue.
So, I'm torn. I like the storyline but I'm put off by what I feel is theft. I'd love to know J. R. Ward's thoughts on this. If she didn't care, I'd read easier knowing my purchase hasn't contributed to supporting blatant rip off of another's imagination and effort. It's a GREAT storyline that didn't require the dragons speak and think like the Brothers so it's a shame I can't give the story a better rating or review.
I enjoyed the Nightwalker series greatly and this first book of the spinoff series proves to be just as good. If you haven't read (or listened to) the other series, you won't be confused if you start with this book but it will make the series all the more enjoyable for having been introduced to the Nightwalker world. The foreshadowing is a bit more obvious than usual with this particular story but that doesn't take away from the great storyline. The rich world created for the Nightwalkers becomes even more wonderful as we learn about the Shadowdweller race and their world of darkness. I can't wait for more!
My only complaint in the narration of this story is that a character we know from the Nightwalker series is portrayed as having a Russian accent. In the dialog leading up to his introduction it is said that he is currently living in the Russian territories so the narrator gave him a Russian accent. This is one of my pet peeves with narration. I think that when they switch narrators within a series or when any boundaries between stories are crossed, the new narrator should listen to what has come before so that the characters remain constant.
Several of the stories I have downloaded have Kirsten Potter as narrator and, as time goes on, I'm getting used to her narration. At first, I thought she was a bit to breathy and porn star for my tastes but that quality seems to be toning down the more books she does. There are times when she gets carried away but she does an excellent job outside of the more passionate scenes and her narration of Maya Banks' Highlander books was outstanding. So, my above complaint isn't with Kirsten Potter but moreso with the editor(s) who do not see being consistent with the narration as being as important to the editing process as inconsistencies within the written word. Perhaps they need to hire obsessive listeners to catch these issues....
If you go back to listen to the Nightwalker series, the first book is Jacob. The female lead in that particular story is a bit annoying at first (well, to me at least...she says "Jacob" every single time she addresses him...like almost every sentence...who does that?) but the series is absolutely wonderful.
I was completely unprepared for how much I enjoyed this book...well, this trilogy. I had read a few other titles by Maya Banks and, in the midst of a complete tantrum over a lack of new reading material, I gave in and purchased this title. I enjoyed it so much that I was racing to download the second and third installments!
The McCabe brothers are (wait, be shocked...gasp...) ALPHA males with vengence on their minds and in their hearts. When Mairin arrives wearing the enemy's colors and with Ewan's missing son in tow, Ewan McCabe is impatient for answers. Too bad Mairin isn't on board with giving answers or following his orders and she's convinced his son to be just as tight lipped!
While the whole Alpha warrior thing isn't new, the personalities of the characters suck you into their world and their lives. I know it's tempting to have that "I am woman" moment and reject the alpha hero, but really...why would you do that when they are just so yummy!
I really liked this first book but found that they got better with each subsequent title. So, don't stop with this one, cash in the credits and keep going!
Ummm...I have to admit, I've already listened to it so often that if it were a record, it would have grooves! I love this particular installment of the series. Rune is so very...well, HOT and possibly the most enjoyable of all of the male leads in the series. I love the portrayal of his lazy, playful, lion's side. Plus, the story itself is extremely well done and highly entertaining. There are perfect blends of steam, action and drama with the typcal comedic moments that catch you by surprise sprinkled throughout. If you haven't started this series, you'll want to begin with Dragon Bound. What I like about this series is that each of your male and female leads have very distinct personalities. You don't feel like you are reading something made from a cookie cutter formula of alpha male, helpless female, blah, blah, blah. The women are strong in their own rights and the men are delicious and the stories will be ones you wish to listen to again and again.
Sophie Eastlake rocks the narration for this series. If she never said which character was supposed to be speaking in the midst of an all out argument with every single character involved, you would know who was speaking just like you know your own family or friend's voices. I've read a couple of reviews complaining about the way she might pronounce a word here and there. I would challenge that regionally, we all pronounce words slightly differently. Being from the south, I do prounounce the word fillet as 'Fill-Ay' but my neighbor, commonly pronounces it as 'fill-it'. It's no different than the whole 'roof' argument about whether it is pronounced like 'goof' or whether you say it like you are a dog barking. See...I can be snarky too!
So if you are already into the stories...keep going and don't forget to swing over to Kindle to check out the novellas that are only available in electronic form. You'll meet some new characters and revisit some older characters and there's a bit of glue that will bind the series in preparation of the book that will come out after "Oracle's Moon." Read "True Colors" and "Natural Evil" before you read "Devil's Gate" and make sure you don't read "Devil's Gate" before listening to "Oracle's Moon."
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