GILBERT, AZ, United States | Member Since 2009
I was in the mood for something angsty, and since the Viking series on the History Channel, I've also been interested in reading/listening to something from that era. So, this book delivered on both fronts in this chemical romance through the melting together of Viking Hero, Brant (Lord Blackwell), the Flame, and his "lady-wife" Lady Della, the Cold-hearted.
As previous reviewers have indicated, you will feel a myriad of emotions on this medieval journey of love. It is an emotional, roller-coaster especially for the values of a 21st century listener! Yet, through the many tumultuous emotions that encompassed the experience of this book, overall, I was rooting for a fabulous HEA for both Brant and Della.
This book is about a very conflicted relationship between a couple from different cultures who go through many misunderstandings because they don't share all of their feelings, they speak too harshly and can't take things back due to pride. Della, herself has one of the most sharp-tongues I've witnessed from a heroine. She says awful things to Brant that come very close to fruition. And, even though, most of the time, Brant was the more patient of the pair, he was ruthless in his treatment of his wife (even though he felt remorseful). In this era, it was what was expected. In fact, with all of the brut power and force of the law on the husband's side, it's amazing how much influence and control Della actually held in her manor and with her husband. She is a very strong heroine, despite her shrewish flaws. But, there's always a reason behind the way people act, and Della definitely has a reason for her prejudice and hatred of Vikings. Brant understood this and seemed to really exert effort in making his marriage work.
Despite the tumult, I kept listening because I couldn't stop. Also, the steamy romances between the two was really good. I just wish there was more coverage of the blissful and light moments between the lovers because when they loved it was amazing…..they loved almost as passionately as they fought. Unfortunately, the end felt very rushed and it did not fully make up for the dramatic, violence that preceded it. For this reason there should have been an epilogue. On the positive side, thankfully, there is a resolution to their issues. This story may have a lot of emotionally, crushing moments, but it is very well written. Let me tell you Michelle Pillow really knows how to tell a story, no matter how steamy or chilling.
Lastly, I thought the narrator was excellent. Mason Loyd did a great job in narrating both the masculine, Viking voices as well as the ladies.
There are not many love stories that can pull you in, grip your heart, tear it apart and then sew it all back together like this one. OMG! I have been obsessed with this book (3rd & last in series) as it brought Tristan and Danika home.
So, entering this last book you already know that Tristan and Danika have been separated for 6 years. Now, I thought they had NO contact during those years, and that made me resentful, but I was dead wrong. While Tristan worked on his sobriety, he never lost sight of her....and I loved that (of course Danika never lost sight of him either). This 3rd book tells a story of two people who never let go of each other, even when they were separated.
In this book, Tristan and Danika move toward each other like magnets, but the push was initiated by Tristan. He set himself on a mission to win her back and I ADORED how he did it! He was cunning, he was sexy, he was resourceful, sympathetic, sensitive, tender, assertive, relentless and so dam loving! Tristan is still the same man, but he definitely had a better reign on his caveman tendencies (I mean he only beat one of Danika's suitors this time), he communicated his feelings so well and he simply loved Danika with every part of him...he loved her like a starving man who had been without sustenance for too long. Danika also matured. She had always been stunning, but now she was more grown up with a polished elegance, yet the same gift for words. I admired Danika like no other heroine. She handled her casualties with grace and fortitude, and when she directed her healing words toward Tristan, well it was no wonder why the man could never give her up.
I have to say something about the biotches who came out of the wood work to disturb Danika, and try and steal Tristan from her....they were IRRELEVANT and INCONSEQUENTIAL...they didn't even come close to touching the power and strength of Tristan and Danika's bond (even though they annoyed the hell out of me). I must add, Danika handled them like a charm.
Since I was obsessed with this book, I could go on and on, but I just have to say that it was awesome to see all of the surrounding characters from the Up In The Air series get their HEAs as well. Yet, the ending of this book was absolutely amazing and so touching. Out of all of the things life had taken away from Tristan and Danika, they came away as champions with so much more than they had lost, and that's saying something. Their love story will stay with me forever......
Narrators: The narrators were excellent: Chris Ruen with his sexy voice, and Sarah N. with her incredible talent at conveying deep emotion...Needless to say, I was impressed. The only complaint is that Sarah N. kept mispronouncing Stephan's name as she pronounced it as "Steven."--Come on! Otherwise, everything was perfect!
This book will go down in history (for me) as being a very conflicted one. It kindled so many emotions that I needed a few days, after finishing it, to try and make sense of my response. Lilley has written this book for someone, hell, for everyone....everyone in life who has lost something very deeply impacting and life changing. Yes, there is grief, loss, drug abuse, and decline. But even if you never experienced addiction, this book will give you a life experience regarding addiction and it's unalterable negative impact on people. This is not a textbook version of addiction, you will experience it as one living in the trenches. Lilley never gives you a scene where the lead is abusing, snorting or anything like that, it's all of the subtle erratic behaviors that become more volatile across settings, as experienced through Danika's eyes.
This second book left me feeling as though Tristan and Danika were in reach of the world at so many points, yet, it all slipped away. After reading this book I wanted to find myself a dark room and cry for days....that's how I felt. I was also conflicted with Tristan--so angry with him, yet tender sympathetic feelings also flowed through. And, Danika.....precious Danika, she was such a strong, beautiful woman who did not deserve to be part of the collateral damage.
This book starts off at a steady pace. Tristan and Danika are dealing with the tragic loss of a loved one. Tristan's rock band was doing well as they had been offered a record deal. Danika was still working as a nanny while studying and pursuing her love for dance. Yet, despite challenging schedules, demands from the band, and every other stressor that pushed on Tristan and Danika, they remained really strong and quite insatiable for one another, I might add. On that note, OMG, I freaken loved how Tristan adored Danika. This man could not live without her.....breath without her. He was caveman-possessive, and a beast in bed--so passionate, so immersed in his love for Danika. And, she responded to him with a love so fierce, and so committed that I knew the unraveling of their separation would be huge. They simply loved each other too hard for it to not end in anything less than catastrophe, and immeasurable pain. By the publisher's summary, readers know that this is the book where Tristan and Danika split up. So I read in dread and there are ominous warnings through Danika's memory as she retells some portions of their experience. Yet, for about 75% of this book, the angst was tolerable. You are left feeling like, OK, that was hard, but they will forge through....Tristan and Danika will get through it...THEN, at about the 30 or 25% mark, disasters uncoil and the freight train is released from the hinges and it all falls a part in the most terrible way possible. The hardest part to digest is that all of the disasters at the end were AVOIDABLE!!! They were within reach of someone's decision, but the wrong decisions were made, no attention was given to predators living in the midst of them, and the constant hunt to find numbness created a savage ending.
After finishing this book, I needed healing for Tristan and Danika and immediately delved into the 3rd book where I knew they would come home to each other.....
Narrators: Sarah Naughton and Chris Ruen were amazing! Sarah was utter perfection. I was even touched by her voices for the little boys Danika took care of. And, well Chris's voice is male perfection....gorgeous voices made this one well-planned, well-performed, well-executed audiobook.
OMG, this book is not just a read/listen that you pick up and forget easily….it's a journey… it's an experience. After being exposed to Tristan and Danika in "Grounded," from the Up In The Air series, I was intrigued. I knew their story had heart-break and devastation so I have waited until the release of all 3 books in their trilogy and a free weekend to explore and experience their love affair.
Let me say that this book is exquisitely done. R.K. Lilley is brilliant as she has created these characters who are vivid, they invoke raw emotion, and wonder, as well as being so likable. In fact, you want the best for them--for both Tristan and Danika as well as every person who touches their lives. I loved seeing James Cavendish (before he met Bianca, the love of his life), and Frankie…..Oh sweet Frankie!!! She is such a wonderful friend to both Tristan and Danika! She really made a difference so many times!
When you start this book, immediately, you know Lilley has give something to readers that goes beyond just another insatiable couple---She's give us a jewel with Tristan and Danika. This series is devastating and I felt that from the onset. This book will make you fall in love and believe in Tristan and Danika. Even though the title is "Bad Things" the reason you hold on, as a reader, is because of all of the good things that meld together as Tristan and Danika are so incredible as a pair. Danika is sassy, sweet, she's a survivor and she is so loving. She's also a student, a nanny, and a dancer. Tristan is kind of lost. He's a club promoter and singer for a band. Yet, even somewhat bereft, Danika awakens something beautiful in him. Her affections, combined with their electric chemistry, does something to Tristan. You can see it, you can feel it. However, Tristan is wrestling with so many demons that serve as heavy weights to his complete commitment to Danika. However, Tristan does grow a lot in this book. He grows in his ability to admit the strength of his feelings for Danika, which allows him to commit to her. There are so many fun moments between the pair, and their dialogue is awesome! In the sex department, they smolder, as they love each over in flames.
But, something's just not right…there is tragedy in this book, and from what I understand it's only the beginning. But even if there wasn't tragedy, there are other land minds that are imbedded deep inside Tristan, and we have only begun to see how his relationship with Danika will unravel and hit "rock bottom" before it plows forward in a much deserved HEA. I haven't even gone through the whole Tristan and Danika experience, but already I KNOW they deserve a beautiful HEA. I wish I could skip book 2 and just jump over to book 3, so I could watch this couple make it home together….oh well…the journey is 1/3 over!
Narrators: Sarah Naughton is freaken AMAZING!!! She did such a wonderful job in her performance. She really brought these characters to life! Chris Ruen narrated during the intermittent Tristan POV's that are inserted here and there, and his performance was delicious! This was one superb audiobook experience!
This is the type of book that I find really hard to rate. I really loved the chemistry and intensity of the connection between the leads, Derek Alexander and Melissa Jones, but there was one thing that made it lose stars for me (which I'll mention later).
Derek and Melissa meet in Scottsdale, Arizona as Melissa is on a spa retreat with her best friend Elaine, and Derek is staying at the same resort for a conference. He is also accompanied by his best friend, Patrick. The hot, steamy sexy-time between Derek and Melissa begins right away, but it's always somewhat strained because Melissa is in the middle of a really bad life event that she refuses to disclose (to the reader and the male lead). Yet, I enjoyed how Derek sought her out and, oh boy, when Melissa stopped churning the wheels of indecision in her head, these two couldn't stop the floodgates of their passion. However, my issue stems from when Derek and Melissa part ways after spending a hot, but emotionally road-blocked week with one another. So, while Melissa goes through her "stuff" (which is pretty bad), well Derek is not present in the book….his absence was too long for me (maybe for about 1/3 of the book). And, it pissed me off that the secondary characters, the "best friends" had a smoother love affair than the leads….GGGGrrrrr!!!! Derek reenters the book right on time, but 38 minutes before the book ends!!!! UGH!
The only thing that made Derek's absence balance out was the beautiful epilogue. It is from Derek's point of view and it's the only time where you get Derek and Melissa, hot and steamy with no road blocks in sight (well not major ones). The other redeeming quality is that there is a second book in this series that is dedicated to Derek and Melissa and when I read that I was like, "damn straight!!!" The author needed to remediate Derek's absence in this book and give readers some more sexy Derek and Melissa time.
Narrators: Lucy Rivers did a fantastic job narrating the majority of the book. Christian Fox came in at the end as he narrated only the epilogue. His voice was super sexy and dreamy.
Now I get it when women seem to be swooning or fanning themselves when they mention Gideon Cross in reviews. This book was all Gideon Cross-sumptuousness! Oh how I loved it! I felt like Gideon and Eva's relationship emanated a strength and security that was further exemplified in the last 2 hours of this audiobook....OMG! What developments and direction this book took!!!!---Totally unexpected, and for me, that's because Gideon Cross is unexpected. He sweeps Eva off of her feet and always seems to surprise her with his reactions and demands which perpetually put her at the top of his priority list. I adore the way Gideon loves Eva...it's a desperate, insatiable, needy, all-consuming kind of love, and of course that love is reciprocated. There are steamy love scenes, and every development in this story brings Gideon and Eva closer together.
Regarding the secondary characters, I'm mixed about Kary (sp?), Eva's best friend. I hate his relationship with Tatiana, but we'll see what happens there. OMG, and Eva's parents kill me!!! I think their story is so sad, but I just know that in the next 2 books something good is going to happen to them...I have that feeling, even though their situation is depressing and lost right now. Eva's friend, Maouby (sp?)---well, there is something weird and suspicious about her, or her boyfriend.....I can't put my finger on it. I'm curious to see what washes up on the shore of past relationships for both Gideon and Eva in the next book. So far, every past relationship, for both has been deemed irrelevant. I hope that continues to be the theme as we go forward in this series.
Regarding book 4, which follows, I can't wait till November when it is released!!! I just hope that Gideon and Eva do not regress in how far along they have come in their trust and love for one another. Eva does tend to misread Gideon's brooding and quiet moments. When she thinks the worst, it tends to turn out that Gideon is even more committed to her than she realizes. I'm hoping that this is the worst type of situation that will occur in the next book. I don't want to be pissed about Gideon or Eva cheating, or anything like that. Well, the fact that I'm pontificating just proves how this series can really get in your head.
UGH, I'm hoping to survive the wait for the release of the final 2 books in this series.
To GIDEON AND EVA, AND THE ADVENTURES & HOT SEX THAT AWAIT THEM!
Narrator: Jill Redfield is incredibly talented. Her performance is excellent. I love what she does for Gideon's voice......she makes him sound so irresistible! She does a great job for all of the characters.
This was a nice georgian romance with a narrator that enhanced the story. I enjoyed Justine Eyrre's performance. Her female voices were feminine and clear, and the male voices were perfectly masculine and razor sharp.
This book got better as the story progressed. It's an interesting concept where the female and male leads somewhat switch traditional roles. Elizabeth was engaged to Marcus Ashford and broke her engagement to him after catching him in a suspicious situation. Yet, it was so hard to conceive how Elizabeth was able to get herself hitched to another man the very night she broke off her engagement to Marcus. What the????? Many questions came up right away for me. Why didn't Elizabeth give Marcus the time he needed to explain his predicament? How did she arrange to marry another so quickly? Well, these questions are pursued and explored by Marcus throughout this book as he returns to London in a poignant time in Elizabeth's life when she is both in danger and a widow. Marcus steps in to help solve the mystery surrounding her husband's murder as well as to protect Elizabeth as her fate is connected to the existence of a journal by her late husband. And so this love affair continues after being suspended for 4 years (from the time Elizabeth broke off the engagement to the present).
I really liked how both leads went through huge transformations throughout this book. In the first half of the book, Elizabeth is almost intolerable. She came across as a Type A personality and control freak to me. She also seemed hollow. In contrast, Marcus was a dream! Bless his heart, I felt so much sympathy for him because he fell in love with a very hard woman to love. When Marcus first saw Elizabeth at a debutante ball, he fell hard for her. She made an indelible impression that almost bordered on obsession for him. Marcus has not been well since Elizabeth jilted him. I loved to see how Marcus' relentless persistence turned this relationship into an incredible, insatiable love affair. He really did save Elizabeth, as a person. She didn't even realize how miserable she was until she opened up her heart to him. Lastly, the ending was very satisfying as well.
OMG!! I finally read/listened to this book! I read the 1st book quite a few months ago and told myself I could wait until all 5 books in this series were released, as my need for instant gratification would drive me crazy-nuts waiting. The other reason I didn't read this book quickly after the 1st, was because of Corinne.
In the previous book Magdalena (Gideon's "Friend") was totally dismantled and disarmed as a womanly threat to Eva, however, a new threat was introduced in Gideon's ex-fiance, Corinne. I felt so jealous for Eva that I didn't know if I could handle (without getting seriously pissed) all of the shenanigans Gideon takes on with Corrine in this book (well, I got that idea through reviews I had read). But, let me tell you.....after reading this book, there simply are NO other womanly threats PERIOD....it's ONLY Eva for Gideon. Corinne was a very minor distraction in this book, hardly noticeable to me, since I was so enthralled with Gideon and Eva's love affair. From the back seat of limos, to concerts, to hot tubs, to beach getaways to office surfaces and lastly his place, or hers....Gideon & Eva's red-hot smoldering love for one another took on a sexual napalm quality, while layering on the deep roots of a love forged in the heart. But it wasn't just about the women in Gideon's past trying to seep themselves into his life, Eva also has a past that impacts this relationship. I liked that Gideon also had to deal with a possible threat of a previous lover wanting Eva back. Whoa!!! Hot-stuff!
Yet the biggest threat to Gideon and Eva's love seems to lead back to a secret. Gideon holds, closely to his breast, a bold secret. Consistently, Gideon asks Eva to trust him when things look suspicious. Yet, not only does Eva have to exert these super-power trust abilities, but so does the reader. And when that secret is revealed it has an explosive impact that underscores how committed and crazy in love Gideon is for Eva...how he will stop at nothing to protect and secure her love.
WOW!! This book was simply incredible! I love the way Sylvia Day writes..her prose is almost lyrical, and these characters she creates...OMG, unforgettable!
On a side note, I think it was funny how Eva seemed to describe everyone in her social orbit as drop dead gorgeous: her mother is gorgeous, her father, her friends, her rivals etc. You get the picture. Yet, I thought if an average-looking person fell into Eva's social circle, she would probably describe them as having model-quality looks as well, that's how exaggerated her comments about people's looks came across to me.
Narrator: Jill Redfield is a narrating goddess. She is one of the best! She really makes these interesting characters come to life (especially Gideon during the love making scenes...lol...pretty crazy performance...haha).
*** Sigh, I wish all 5 books were out already......
Well, I took one more chance and read/listened to his book, even though the 1st one was a relational nightmare ("Take a Chance"). Overall, I enjoyed this book, and that happened once I forgave Grant (for being an ass in the 1st book). Harlow is one of the most forgiving, sweet and mentally strong heroines in this series. I suspect that's because she grew up with rock and roll and learned to accept people for who they are. There are many revelations in this book that I can't divulge, or it would ruin it for readers/listeners. But, I will say that the love story (I can finally call it a love story) between Grant and Harlow took on a very sentimental and loving quality in this book. Grant works hard to redeem himself, and I felt that his transformation was real and came from the heart.
I enjoyed the involvement of previous characters in this series (Rush, Blair, Woods, Dela etc.) who were all pertinent and quite supportive of one another. I hope they make a book about Mase (Harlow and Nan's half brother), who is Kiro's only son. I really liked him! Bethy, is still lost, and even though Nan steps out of character and does something heroic, I still DO NOT like her. And, I REALLY hope Glines does not make a book about Nan. I think I will draw the line there and stop following this series.
One aspect of Glines writing that I find fascinating is that even though some of her characters make BAD choices with devastating consequences, they can still find their HEA...that's what she's doing for Bethy in the next 2 books in this series. And, that's what she did for Grant in these 2 books (although what Grant did was so mild in comparison to Bethy's behavior).
For Harlow and Grant, I really liked how they finally found their flow with one another. Harlow's letters nearly KILLED ME!!! OMG, I really teared up! And, Kiro's love for Emily and his love for his daughter Harlow warmed my heart. Grant really manned up in this book and became a wonderful lover, husband and father to their sweet daughter. Yet, the way this book finished was kind of off to me. Where was Kiro? And, what ever happened to Grant's parents??? Any follow up? For me, the end was too abrupt, we only got a bird's eye view of the last event in this book. I needed more.....maybe I'm too greedy, or just need more things to finalize to make me feel that all loose ends were tied up.....
Narrators: Shayna T. and Jack D. continued to do a very good job!
I already knew I was going to have a hard time with this story because of the reviews, but I have really enjoyed the Rosemary Beach series, so far, and simply needed to keep going. So I recruited the help of a reading buddy to read/listen along with me so we could be a support group to one another...lol, Crazy right? Well, let me tell you that I needed that support throughout this book because about 20 minutes into it, it was an almost DNF. In fact, it was an almost DNF up until about 60% of the book.
Glines really took a chance in writing Grant and Harlow's story because of Grant's tangled previous relationship with Harlow's half sister Nan (who is a bonafide biotch of the first degree). Harlow and Nan are half sisters and the daughters of rock star legend, Kiro, and along with that connection, there were so many relational aspects of this story that did not make sense to me. For instance....why would Kiro have Harlow (his favorite and beloved daughter) live with Nan (his venomous daughter who HATES Harlow) in Rosemary Beach, in the SAME house????? I NEVER understood that completely. But, the hardest part was how Grant got involved with Harlow after his relationship with Nan began to disintegrate. I know that he had an instant attraction to Harlow, and she made him feel things he had never experienced before but, Oh MY GOODNESS, really??? You're going to fall in love with your EVIL-BITCHY ex-girlfriend's half sister???? Now if that wasn't a doozy, the hardest part of the story between Grant and Harlow is HIS behavior after he was with Harlow. UGH, that infuriated me beyond belief!!!! Look, I really do like Man-Whores, but only after they STOP Man-whoring after they find the love of their life!!!! What the heck Grant???? His excuse was fear....wow...that dam fear.....
Anyway, I don't think I will ever get over how badly Grant messed up on Harlow after being with her!!!! UGh!!! And, I really liked Grant from previous books. He was the fun and very caring playboy of the group of gorgeous men in Rosemary Beach.
Well, the reason I finished this book was because of sweet Harlow. I mean, I needed to see the girl through this mess! Also, because of her cowboy, half-brother Mase who was so awesome and protective--Loved Him. Lastly, because of the the incredible story that was revealed about her mother, Emily and Kiro's amazing love. OMG, that took my breath away!!!!!
Even though this book does not end well, I'm pushing to the next book because I'm an optimist and hoping Grant redeems himself, especially in light of Harlow's secret coming out.....
Narrators: Shayna T. and Jack D. did a very nice job with this audiobook. It took me a while to get used to Shayna's voice, but overall, I believe she did a good job.
You know, I'm not sure how Kirsten Ashley (K.A.) does it-----How she keeps creating these very compelling, insanely beautiful and deep books about characters who are gripping & full-bodied. This book has so many layers that you will find yourself tearing up, feeling elation, triumphant and indignant, at times. You have vintage KA hero & heroine: the hero Chace Keaton, detective-badass who tends to speak in phrases (no pronouns needed), and a heroine, Faye Goodnight, who is cute, sweet, innocent and classy….who needs extra moments to process compelling information, signaled by an extra "blink" or a "pardon" or an inquiring, "I'm sorry?" LOL---That's just classic KA writing. Oh, but regarding the heroine--OMG, isn't her last name so cute??? And, she's also a geek…definitely an adorable, sexy geek. I adored the references to Battlestar Galactica, Star Wars and even Game of Thrones in pockets of the book.
I loved the leads….OK, yes, they had to look like a gorgeous couple--Chase with his vivid blue eyes, dark blonde hair, athletic build, and Faye with her brilliant blue eyes, auburn hair and hourglass figure, but more than that, they fit emotionally, psychologically and chemically….Haha… I loved how Chase fell for Faye in the aisle of a grocery store, while her nose was in a book. But, I felt happy for Chase when he began to bask in his love with Faye because he suffered so much previously. In Faye he found an "angel" to heal his wounds and carry his "dark." In the previous book, Chase was such a mysterious character with a lot of bad crap surrounding him with the good cop/bad cop history he had. Yet, I couldn't help but feel that Chase was always the man who was like someone outside of a house looking in through a window longing for a life he could never have, when he gazed upon the happiness of other couples. So, Chase and Faye's realization of their love was passionate, powerful and an all-engulfing sentimental affair.
Like any of KA's book in this Colorado Mountain series you have a community that comes together to help save the day, you have a band of alpha males who talk "man-talk," and a fabulous group of women who show concern and are extremely supportive of one another. I mean if Carnal was a real biker town with the characters KA describes, I would totally love to come and hang for a long time…LOL
Lastly, the additional subplots were emotionally gripping….who could forget the boy who found comfort in books, and the beginning stages of healing of a father-son relationship long past damaged. Yes, this book hit on all of my heart strings. Bravo KA!!! Another excellent book in this series!
Narrator- Emma Taylor is excellent and always does a wonderful job in her narration.
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