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Smitten with Reading

Texas | Member Since 2011

19
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 32 reviews
  • 34 ratings
  • 139 titles in library
  • 39 purchased in 2014
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  • Deadly Shadows: Kinncaid Brothers Series # 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Jaycee Clark
    • Narrated By Johanna Parker
    Overall
    (82)
    Performance
    (72)
    Story
    (73)

    A small, friendly Colorado town, nestled in the breathtaking Rockies, cloaks a malevolence, an evil that stalks women. Jesslyn Black, a writer, is content living her now-single, childless life. If she keeps to herself, she can't get hurt. Haunted by the past, Jesslyn never again wants to experience the soul-shredding pain of losing loved ones. Aiden Kinncaid is running from his own secret loss. As the CEO of Kinncaid Enterprises, he travels to this remote Colorado resort town to oversee the opening of the new Highland Hotel.

    Toni L. Bell says: "Up all night"
    "A- overall rating..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall....4.25
    Performance...4.25
    Story...4.00

    This is my first Jaycee Clark read although I have a friend who urged me to read these books ages ago because she knew I would enjoy them. (You were right, Amy!)

    From the moment this book began, the energy and expectation that I love with romantic suspense began. Right away the energy ramps up when Jesslyn comes upon the murder of one of her best friends in the middle of the night. From that moment on, her life is at risk because the murderer knows that she might have seen something. And so the story begins.

    There were so many little things I loved about this book. Jesslyn is a writer. As one myself, I loved how she could use her writing as a stress reliever. Aiden is a renter in her house and although their first encounters are fairly acrimonious, he remains very protective of her. I loved that. What I didn't absolutely love and my one real complaint about the book was how their relationship did a 180 so suddenly. One minute they are jibing at each other and the next they realize that they are in love. What? I can usually deal with insta-love, but this one went a little too fast in a totally different direction too quickly for me. But other than that it was a great book and an incredible audio listen.

    The narrator was great and the addition of Aiden's parents at the end as well as his brother convinced me that I want to listen to the entire series on audio and went and bought them all on audible. BTW, the narrator does some spectacular voices and accents. I really, really loved her narration on this one and the good news is that she narrates the entire series. Yippee!

    This is definitely great romantic suspense, too. I had my suspects narrowed down to three at about 2/3 of the way through and then down to two at the end. I was completely and totally wrong about the bad guy. I love it when a story can twist me around that way and since I've started writing rom suspense, I've gotten pretty good at figuring out the bad guy so bravo, Jaycee, on the writing on this one!

    It was good and I am already half-way through the audio on book 2 and it's shaping up to be even better. I think I have a new author to fan-girl on....

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Frost Burned: Mercy Thompson, Book 7

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Patricia Briggs
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2348)
    Performance
    (2159)
    Story
    (2171)

    Mercy Thompson's life has undergone a seismic change. Becoming the mate of Adam Hauptman - the charismatic Alpha of the local werewolf pack - has made her a stepmother to his daughter, Jesse, a relationship that brings moments of blissful normalcy to Mercy's life. But on the edges of humanity, what passes for a minor mishap on an ordinary day can turn into so much more.... After an accident in bumper-to-bumper traffic, Mercy and Jesse can't reach Adam - or anyone else in the pack for that matter. They've all been abducted.....

    ShySusan says: "One of the best urban fantasy series"
    "A rating...."
    Overall
    Performance
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    My Review:

    Overall.... 4.5
    Performance... 4.75
    Story.... 4.5

    Absolutely everything about this book was good! I loved this one! I particularly like the way this one started with Jesse and Mercy doing Black Friday shopping and all the craziness that entails. I honestly was riveted from page one with what was going on with the pack, the wreck, everything. This book grabbed hold of me and never let go. Loved, loved, LOVED all the action in this one.

    And I also really enjoyed being back in the arms of the pack again...both Adam's wolf-pack and Mercy's pack of strays. Ben & Kyle...gah, I love both these guys and I loved how much page time they got. Honestly, I think Ben is one of the most under-appreciated wolves. He is so strong and his will-power in this one was amazing. I love how much he is tied to and devoted to her...probably because their relationship was so not that way to begin with. They just have a great partnership...mainly in that it's so unexpected.

    And this book explored even more of Mercy's powers. I love how much they continue to grow and evolve and surprise even her. Coyote is an interesting mentor to her. Honestly, I don't even really like the character, but I like what Patricia Briggs has done with him in the story to help Mercy.

    And then there's the little easter egg of happiness in this book...TWO WHOLE CHAPTERS FROM ADAM'S POV. I squealed aloud when the first one happened and then couldn't believe that there was a second. Mercy and Adam are in such a good stable place which is crazy when you consider how unstable their lives are on a daily basis. Their marriage has enriched them and I like that a lot. No, he hates that she risks herself and his wolf fights him on letting her do her thing...BUT there's a respect between them. She takes him into consideration when she knows she's doing something risky and does everything in her power to negate the risk and to let him know exactly what's going on so there's no question if it goes bad.

    In this book there were more vampire politics. Stefan...love him. Wulfe...I like him too and think in the end of the series he's gonna be a serious ally too. He's so slippery, but I think he honestly admires what Mercy is able to accomplish and I think that will end up working for good. The whole story with Marcelia's car cracked me up through the whole book. I loved everyone's reactions when they would see the car and then find out it was hers. It's that thread of humor that flows through these books which just puts them above-par for my enjoyment levels. These stories make me laugh and they make me cry, but above all I adore Mercy and her neverending fight for what's right...no matter the cost. That right there is the perfect Urban Fantasy set-up and why this continues to be one of my top UF series reads ever!!

    And yes, Lorelei King continues to be brilliant in her narration of these books. Wow, that woman has talent!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • River Marked: Mercy Thompson, Book 6

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Patricia Briggs
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2841)
    Performance
    (2050)
    Story
    (2050)

    Car mechanic Mercy Thompson has always known there was something different about her, and not just the way she can make a VW engine sit up and beg. Mercy is a shapeshifter, a talent she inherited from her long-gone father. She's never known any others of her kind. Until now.

    Yuriko says: "Love it"
    "B rating overall..."
    Overall
    Performance
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    My Review:
    Overall.... 3.75
    Performance... 4.75
    Story.... 3.25

    This book takes Mercy on a different type of adventure as it's just her and Adam on their honeymoon for most of the book and the bad guy is a water devil...something that Adam can't help fight since as a werewolf, he sinks in water. As a result, this book has a very different feel for Mercy. She doesn't have the pack or her pack of misfit paranormals helping her. Instead she has a lot of Indian-based lore legends who help out.

    I'll admit that I missed the normal characters in this book. I love all those characters that Mercy is normally surrounded by. They all have this great camaraderie in their interactions that build the fun in the story. That was missing in this book for me as I just didn't have that same attachments to her band of helpers in this book. I wanted Ben and Stefan and Jessi and Sam and... well, you get the idea. The book simply wasn't as good without them.

    The book does have more Adam and Mercy moments and I enjoyed that aspect of it. It's wonderful to see their relationship and trust grow past where either of them are truly comfortable. But they are comfortable in their love so they trust that when their instincts are screaming. I loved that Adam managed to hold back and simply watch while Mercy did her thing in this book. That's a true sign of love and I did enjoy that he has grown so much to trust her like that...even to the point of losing her.

    Overall, this wasn't my favorite book in the series, but it was still important to the overall story arc and it was still enjoyable. I understand that there are going to be these types of books for me in any series and I'm definitely okay with that. The plus to that is that I was actually able to listen to the entire book on audio rather than skipping to the book where I could read faster myself. And honestly that's its own special treat just because the narrator, Lorelei King, does such an incredible job on this series. Her range of voices and accents is truly impressive. NEVER do I get confused on who's talking and with literally hundreds of characters in the entire series, that's truly impressive. On to book #6.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Darkness Rises: Immortal Guardians Series, Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Dianne Duvall
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (674)
    Performance
    (636)
    Story
    (637)

    Krysta is used to getting the drop on vampires. Her "special abilities" aren't much, but the plan is simple - she plays helpless pretty young thing to lure them in. Then her shoto swords come out and it's bye-bye, bloodsucker. Until one night she finds herself with an unexpected ally. He's a vampire, all right, but different. Mysterious. Handsome. And more interested in saving her skin than draining it. Etienne has been an Immortal Guardian for two hundred years-long enough to know that Krysta is special.

    NEW NAME says: "They're back!!!!!"
    "B+ rating...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.25
    Performance... 4.5
    Story.... 4.0

    It's been a while since I dropped into the Immortal Guardian world and I had forgotten just how much I love it. This was a great book to get me back into it.

    Sean and Krysta made this book for me. I loved the siblings who have been fighting vampires together with no real training or experience for 6 years. And they really have been working blind. They have no idea about the Immortals or Seconds although Krysta has heard rumblings from the vampires as she battles them. Both Krysta and Sean are "gifted ones"...they have other powers. For Krysta, she can see auras and with vampires that means she can see their aura shift in battle telling her which way they are going to move before they attack. Sean is a healer. He's the one who puts Krysta back together after a night of hunting. They believe in what they are doing although it's running them ragged to hunt on top of med school for Sean and jobs for both of them.

    Etienne runs into Krysta during a battle and is shocked at how well she handles herself. But she's still human and therefore vulnerable so he begins to follow her at night to "help her out"...something that Krysta doesn't appreciate especially since she thinks he's a vampire too.

    These books have everything. The romance is always stellar, the paranormal world exciting and interesting, but the group dynamic is perfection. I love the scenes where all the characters in this huge cast are together. The characters have a wide mix of personalities, but they are all quick-witted and the back and forth between them is all so much fun. Whether it's conversations between the various siblings or the Immortals or the humans, they all have a great snarky wit that I just love.

    Reading these books are fun and listening to them on audio just enhances that. Kirsten Potter is an incredible narrator and she masters ALL the different voices and accents perfectly. This is one of my favorite series to listen to on audio and her talent is a lot of the reason for that.

    I highly recommend the entire series and definitely this book too. If you can listen to it on audio, I think it's even better, but the books are good and action-filled so I'll tell you right now that you may want a copy of the book too because there will be times when you want the speed of being able to read it yourself because you have to know what happens next. A superb installment to this series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Blood Bound: Mercy Thompson, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Patricia Briggs
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3175)
    Performance
    (2168)
    Story
    (2170)

    Mechanic Mercy Thompson has friends in low places - and in dark ones. And now she owes one of them a favor. Since she can shapeshift at will, she agrees to act as some extra muscle when her vampire friend Stefan goes to deliver a message to another of his kind. But this new vampire is hardly ordinary - and neither is the demon inside of him.

    Deborah says: "Blood Bound"
    "A rating overall"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.5
    Performance... 4.75
    Story.... 4.5

    I read the first book in this series 2-3 years ago and thought it was "okay" but nothing to rave about. I also listened to the Alpha & Omega series all on audio and LOVED them. I know the two series intertwine, so I decided to give this one another shot on audio. (I did re-listen to book #1 on audio too and while I don't plan on re-reviewing it, I will tell you that I loved it much, MUCH more the second time around.)

    So this is my review of book #2 in this series...in a nutshell...I'M SOLD. I'm definitely a Mercy Thompson fan now. I did a mix of reading and audio on this book depending on my schedule and that is honestly how I'll probably do the rest of this entire series. I adore Lorelei King's narration, but can read myself so much faster so there are times when I just want to get to the juicy parts and then I relish those on audio with all the narration inflections that add so much to ALL of these many characters.

    Things have changed for the wolves in this book since book #1...werewolves have come out to the world. But rather than focus the story line on that, this book really dealt with the vampires in this world and their abilities to manipulate magic. There were some amazingly interesting scenes in this one. I'm especially intrigued by Wulfe. And OMG, Stefan...I knew he had a different perspective on Mercy, but did not expect that story line to go where it did, but I like it! My heart aches so hard for Samuel. Because I've read all the Alpha & Omega series, I have a pretty good idea of what the future holds for him and like Mercy I just want to hold him tight and comfort him. Those scenes with her and him are magic. While I fully think she belongs with Adam, I love the connection she has with all the males in these books. She's an empathetic person and that enables her to reach them in a way that other women can't. She also has a special place as a walker which I think furthers that.

    I'll be honest, there wasn't a whole lot of quality Adam and Mercy time in this book, but I was okay with that. Everything about this installment of the series made me love it more. I like how strong Mercy is. She's tough, but it's an honest tough...she gets terrified, but is absolutely willing to work through that to save her friends. She may not be part of the Pack officially, but she has her own bigger pack filled with the wolves, Stefan, Zee, Tony, and humans that she protects with everything she is. And she is a lot. This story really began to delve into her Walker capabilities, but I think the author has barely scratched the surface. I'm ready to dive into book #3.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • His to Protect: Red Stone Security Series, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Katie Reus
    • Narrated By Pyper Down
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (24)
    Performance
    (22)
    Story
    (23)

    No woman ever affected Red Stone Security expert Kell Malone quite like Charlotte Bastien. It’s been a year since that incredibly intense night they spent together and he still can’t get her out of his head. When he discovers she’s in Miami - with their three-month-old son - he’s stunned. Hurt. He’s also determined to know his child, and if she’ll give him the chance, to make a life with the stubborn woman who has sworn off love.

    Smitten with Reading says: "B+ overall rating..."
    "B+ overall rating..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.0
    Performance... 4.0
    Story.... 4.0

    I only listen to audiobooks while I'm doing my household chores each week and honestly, I try not to spend too much time in those chores each week. As a result, it can sometimes take me over a month to get through a full audiobook. That's a bit too much time to invest, but that's where this audio was perfect for me. I'm a romantic suspense girl and with just over 3 hours of audio on the unabridged version of this story, it was perfect for me.

    And in this book, that shortened story worked for me simply because Kell and Charlotte have their history behind them. Kell loved Charlotte for years, but she was married to his best friend. A best friend that she found out was cheating on her after his death. In the midst of the confusion of her husband's death, they got swept away with desire and had a one night stand. Kell wanted it to be so much more. Charlotte couldn't handle that and fled. Then she had a baby...Kell's baby.

    This story takes place when that baby is three months old...so basically a year after their single night. Like I said, I'm not sure if this shortened story would have worked for me without their history. Charlotte also realizes that she did Kell wrong by not getting in touch with him when she got pregnant. I love that she owned up to that and instead of bristling at Kell's edicts, she agrees that he has some valid reasons for his demands. That was such a turnaround from most hidden baby stories and I liked the change. Also, the high drama of the situation (she stumbles on a murder) makes their sudden closeness even more believable.

    I liked this one. I think the narrator did a great job on the audiobook and I love the short time needed to commit to this book. I plan to listen to more of the Red Stone series this way. I hope they all play out as well for me. I think that they will.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dirty Kiss, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Rhys Ford
    • Narrated By Greg Tremblay
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (180)
    Performance
    (172)
    Story
    (174)

    Cole Kenjiro McGinnis, ex-cop and PI, is trying to get over the shooting death of his lover when a supposedly routine investigation lands in his lap. Investigating the apparent suicide of a prominent Korean businessman's son proves to be anything but ordinary, especially when it introduces Cole to the dead man's handsome cousin, Kim Jae-Min.

    T. Henry says: "Almost better than the book!!! And I love the book"
    "B rating overall..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 3.75
    Performance... 4.75
    Story.... 3.0
    Hmm, something about this story just didn't quite do it for me. The book goes heavily into Korean culture and since it was that culture that played so heavily into the negative aspects of the story line, I had a hard time appreciating it.

    Cole is a private eye investing the suicide death of Jae's cousin, who was a closeted gay man. The suicide and suspense line has a whole somewhat fascinating side to this story that leads Cole to Jae. Jae is also a closeted gay man...closeted because of his family and the Korean ideals that they hold up. It's a bizarre attitude. No one is happy about the gay men, but as long as they don't flaunt it, it can be ignored. Jae is fairly ostracized by his family, but his loyalty to them is first and foremost in his life. I had an issue with that. They are fine throwing him away. As someone not from that culture, it's hard to accept that kind of blind, non-yielding loyalty. To me, he owed something to himself and his true feelings for Cole so that made this whole story difficult for me.

    This is the start of a huge series and I honestly don't plan on continuing with it, although fans of this series rave about how good it is over and over again. I just don't think it's for me.

    But with that being said, I am dying to know why Cole's partner when he was a policeman went off the deep end and killed Cole's lover, himself, and seriously wounded Cole. I'm tempted to read the whole series just to find out that fact. I loved Cole and his pragmatic attitude toward life, Jae Min, and his career. He has a snarky wit that I loved and could empathize with. I love his attitude even when he is doing something stupid to endanger himself...again.

    And it should be noted that the narrator for this audiobook was phenomenal. There were Korean accents, Korean cross-dressers, and Cole's own flat snark that he delivered with absolute brilliance and perfection. I don't think there is a more perfect narrator for this series than Greg Tremblay.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rebel: Renegades, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Skye Jordan, Joan Swan
    • Narrated By Piper Goodeve
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (199)
    Performance
    (185)
    Story
    (183)

    Sassy, smart, and sexy, former supermodel-turned-tech guru Rubi Russo has it all-looks, money, confidence and freedom. Her life is a whirlwind of fast cars and fleeting affairs - and she likes it that way. With a past like Rubi's, forever isn't part of her vocabulary. So when studly renegade stuntman Wes Lawson wants to take their friendship to the next level, she's all out. it's just a matter of crushing her fears, shattering her barriers, and convincing her that loving him is everything she's been missing in her life, too...Piece of cake.

    karen says: "An amazing Story where Lust and Love Succeed"
    "A rating...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.75
    Performance... 5.0
    Story.... 4.5

    This book was literally audiobook and narrating perfection. The story was amazing, too, and my problem with a good book on audio is that I usually can't stick with the audio because I can read so much faster and I want to know what happens in the story. But the narrator was so good on this one that I simply had to stay with it in that version. And that's also a sign of incredible writing too because it all had such a natural flow to it. Someday I want to be able to write like Skye Jordan.

    But back to the book...Rubi Russo is all that is dysfunctional when it comes to relationships. She's rich, she's beautiful, she's incredibly intelligent, but she's emotionally stunted because of childhood neglect all through her developing years. She grew up in a house of riches, but no one was ever there for her when she was a little girl. So she has no idea how to love and be loved and to have a true relationship. The one person who has managed to break through that wall with her is her best friend, Lexi, the heroine from book #1 in this series.

    Wes is one of the stuntmen from Renegades. He's been friends with Rubi for a while and they have been playing with flirting for just as long. He really wants her, but Rubi doesn't do anything besides just sex...for a single night, no do-overs. Wes grew up in middle america (missouri) and is from a wholesome family. He doesn't understand Rubi's dysfunction, but I loved his character for how much he works to understand and not push her too far, too fast, no matter that he's ready for everything immediately after they hook up because it was so phenomenal.

    Rubi is blown away too and so she tentatively gives him a chance. The best thing about this book, next to the absolutely incredible sizzling chemistry between these two, is at just how intelligent Rubi is. She knows she's broken, but has never met a guy worth trying to overcome that. Wes is worth it, but that doesn't stop her knee-jerk reaction to him and his emotions. The difference between this and most books though is that she's smart...she thinks about what she's doing and calls herself out when she's just reacting the way she's been taught to over her life.

    I LOVED her and I LOVED Wes. OMG, they are so absolutely perfect together. This is one hot, smexy book, but not once did I feel like the sex or flirting or by-play got to be too much. I believed every single moment of their explosive passion...and there's a lot of it. The whole story is fabulous. It's sexy and smart and has such a great balance of story, backstory, and romance. I LOVED IT!!

    And the narrator...PERFECTION! If you have a chance to listen to this one on audio, I highly recommend it. But be warned...this is one seriously smexy book. You will probably want to listen with headphones so someone doesn't walk in during one of the many, hot scenes which could prove to be embarrassing. ;o)

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Ethan, Who Loved Carter

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Ryan Loveless
    • Narrated By K. C. Kelly
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (95)
    Performance
    (95)
    Story
    (95)

    By twenty-four, Carter Stevenson has stuttered and ticced his way to debilitating shyness. Although his friends accuse him of letting his Tourette's dictate his life, Carter moves from Los Angeles to a quiet California town. He'll keep his head down and avoid people. He doesn't anticipate his new neighbor, Ethan Hart, crashing into his solitude and forcing him to get out and live.

    Libros Lover says: "Wow..."
    "B rating overall..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.0
    Performance... 4.75
    Story.... 3.5

    On the one hand, this was an incredible book because the author took two unlikely characters for a romance story and made them into heartwarming, loving people that I truly loved to read about. On the other hand, there were issues with this relationship which made me uncomfortable and made me question the validity of the romance.

    Carter is an adult with Tourettes which has made it hard for him to have a true relationship. His ticks and jerks are difficult for men to deal with. Ethan, who was brain damaged at the age of 18, sees Carters body ticks as a kind of music. Ever since his injury he sees the world differently than the rest of us do and he sees Carters ticks as a melody, music floating through the clouds. In that regard, this story was beautiful. I loved how Ethan saw the beauty in Carter.

    Where this story didn't work for me was in their maturity levels. Ethan has brain damage and in so many ways is very child-like and needs someone to watch over him. While I completely got and understood the bond between the two men...for the first time, Carter has found someone who sees his ticks and jerks as beautiful...I have a hard time seeing them in an equal relationship for the long-haul. There's nothing wrong with Carter's brain...it's fully developed and matured. I think the child-like, heavily sexed up relationship between the two would eventually not be enough for Carter mentally and he wouldn't have that same level of satisfaction. And if that happened, Ethan would be completely and totally devastated over the loss. I don't think Ethan would be able to come back from that kind of heartbreak. Watching his breakdown in the book when his life took an unexpected twist...I think that having Carter gone from his life would be SO MUCH MORE of a blow to him mentally than the challenge he had in the story.

    And this is where I get too involved with the characters that AREN'T REAL...LOL. Because let's face it, if Ryan Lovelace wants them to stay together than these two are totally going to have an HEA that lasts until they are over 100 years old. I just need to keep telling myself and reassuring myself that he'll make sure they stay happy and stable together.

    Fiction=Make Believe from the author's imagination=I can trust the author that he will keep these characters happy.

    Note: I listened to the audiobook version of this book. K.C. Kelly was an AMAZING narrator...from Ethan's slightly slower voice to Carter's ticks and stutters, the narration was 100% fabulous!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Bayou Moon: The Edge, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Ilona Andrews
    • Narrated By Renée Raudman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (885)
    Performance
    (627)
    Story
    (634)

    When her parents vanish, Cerise's clan's long-time rivals are suspects number one. But all is not as it seems. Two nations of the Weird are waging a cold war, and their conflict is about to spill over into the Edge - and Cerise's life. William, a changeling soldier who left behind the politics of the Weird, has been forced back into service to track down a rival nation's spymaster. When William's and Cerise cross paths, sparks fly - but they'll have to work together if they want to succeed…and survive.

    Angela says: "Great!!!"
    "B+ rating...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.0
    Performance... 5.0
    Story.... 3.5

    I love audiobooks, but unless I'm on a roadtrip, I only get about an hour a week to listen to them. This audiobook was 16 hours long and I only had one small roadtrip when I got to listen to it. As a result, this book took me about 6 weeks to get through. That was entirely too long and I think it affected how much I enjoyed the book overall.

    This is a complex world and a complex story, but at the heart of it were Cerise and her family who live in the swamps. William is a changeling...i.e. a wolf shifter...and her love interest. The overall story line was very layered with intrigue and levels of interest from the three different levels of this world. But I'll be honest with you...because it took me so long to get through it...the politics of who all was after what and who was working with whom, got completely lost for me. For me, this book remained about Cerise and William and their developing relationship which I did really enjoy.

    For William, being a changeling is not something good in this world. The world considers them feral and tried to kill them all at some point. So he never lets most people know what he is. For Cerise, she doesn't give a damn what he is and I absolutely LOVED that about her. Cerise is one tough cookie and she does what she wants (unless it will hurt her family) and then she does what's good for the family. She's loyal to a fault, tough, but so wanting for a life and the love that she finds with William. For him, he's never even considered that he could find the happiness that he does with Cerise. He is also really tough, but has a vulnerability which just tore at my heart because he wants to belong somewhere so badly. I loved him in book #1 and fell even further for him in this story.

    There is a LOT to this story...a lot of characters, a lot of layers of politics, and I'm not going to get into all that. I will say that something that the team of Ilona Andrews does incredibly well is adding children to the story. In book #1 there were Georgie and Jack (which we get to see again in this book ...yay) and then this one had Lark and the boy that I can't remember his name that William takes under his wing. They added so much impact to the story with very little overall page time.

    And I can't do an audiobook review without mentioning Renee Raudman's INCREDIBLE narration. Wow. There are SO MANY characters in this book and each one sounds distinctly different. I don't know how she does it. Even the kids from book #1, Jack and Georgie...sounded exactly the same as they did in book #1. She has to have over 100-150 voices in her repertoire and it boggles my mind.

    I have to admit, I'm on the fence about book #3. These absolutely are the kinds of books I enjoy on audio, but that one's 14 hours. But it also features Kaldar...who I loved in this book. Maybe I will just sit down and read that one and save the shorter books for my audio enjoyment.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • On the Edge: The Edge, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Ilona Andrews
    • Narrated By Renée Raudman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1405)
    Performance
    (1000)
    Story
    (1013)

    Rose Drayton lives on the Edge, between the world of the Broken (where people drive cars, shop at Wal-Mart, and magic is a fairy tale) and the Weird (where blueblood aristocrats rule, changelings roam, and the strength of your magic can change your destiny). Only Edgers like Rose can easily travel from one world to the next, but they never truly belong in either.

    Stephanie says: "Refreshing"
    "B+ rating...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.0
    Performance... 4.5
    Story.... 4.0

    What an interesting new world. There are three layers of reality in this paranormal setting....the Edge, the Weird, and the Broken. The Broken is our reality and the Weird is where magic reigns supreme. Rose lives in the middle, the Edge.

    Life is hard in the Edge for Rose. She has two young brothers who are just as magical as she that she is simply trying to keep housed, fed, and out of trouble... a task that is much harder than it sounds. Rose has learned the hard way that she can't trust anyone other than herself and her family. At an early age, she showed to have a special kind of magic...it's pure and something that all families want in their heredity. So the bluebloods...who live in the Weird...have tried to take her. By force and by coercion. It's never been about her...only her magic.

    Then along come two new men into the Edge...William and Declan...who both have appeal to her. But she certainly doesn't trust either of them or their motivations for approaching her, regardless of what they say.

    I like Rose...she is tough and is most certainly a fighter. It's exhausting to think about being her though. She can NEVER take anything at face value and that makes me so sad for her. She constantly has to look for hidden motives from everyone around her.

    But I also really loved both Declan and William. Declan is an interesting character just because his background as a blueblood makes him so clueless on a certain level. But he never looks down on Rose. In fact, he's very impressed by her and sees her strength. He wants to know about her world and will do all he can to fit in and fix what's broken there. William has a different vulnerability to him. I loved how he connected with Jack and actually both boys. He feels real...even though it's obvious he has secrets...it doesn't feel like they are evil secrets ever.

    Then there are the boys...Jack and George. Still so little but having to act so much older than they should. I loved them and both their magical skills and the way those played into the story. My heart broke for George during the second challenge, but wow...it made for some powerful emotion in the book.

    Overall, this was a great intro into this world. I've already downloaded book #2 from my Audible account. I like that every book follows two different characters in this incredible world.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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