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Karen

Belgium, Europe
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  • Forever Broken

  • Talon Pack, Book 9
  • By: Carrie Ann Ryan
  • Narrated by: Aiden Snow
  • Length: 6 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 47
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 44
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 44

The war between the Redwood Pack and the Centrals is one of wolf legend. The Talon Pack was always on the fringes, prepared to fight, but not in the right leadership. With the new alpha and ruling family, the Talons are a pack of wolves with whom no one wants to mess. If only things worked out like they should....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Did not see this coming

  • By Kim on 04-01-19

Very enjoyable shifter romance. Great narrator!

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-05-19

Very enjoyable addition to this series! It was an exciting read with a lot of focus on the battle against that horrible alpha Blade. The world-building in this series is simply awesome, and it’s such fun to reconnect with the characters from previous books. I hope Carrie Ann Ryan isn’t finished yet with shifter stories, because hers are amazing!

I liked Max and Cheyenne both individually and as a couple, and I’d have liked for them to have had more time to fall in love. They have to contend with a lot of course, and they have only so much time to spare for actually getting to know each other better, in between attempting to save their pack and world as they know it. There was one very important (positive) development that I hadn’t seen coming, at all. Always love when that happens! One thing that bugged me a bit was some of the violence and the lack of anything resembling a justice system. It’s quite a “take no prisoners” universe and I’d have preferred a bit more gray and chance for redemption.

I really liked the narrator, Aiden Snow, who has a very pleasant, warm voice that I could, and did, listen to for hours on end. I very much enjoyed his performance and all the voices he did for the characters. I loved the emotion and intensity he brought to the story.

  • From Breath and Ruin

  • The Elements of Five Series, Book 1
  • By: Carrie Ann Ryan
  • Narrated by: Bailey Carr
  • Length: 10 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 28

Five hundred years ago, the Maison Realm was shattered, divided into warring kingdoms of elemental Wielders with fate and truth shadowed and uncertain. Now, factions of both the light and dark venture into the human realm in search of the prophesied Spirit Priestess who is said to Wield the Elements of Five and bring the two fractured kingdoms together. Lyric has no idea there's a realm outside the human one in which she lives. When fate and circumstances are pulled from her hands after an accident, she finds out nothing is at it seems.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • From Breath and Ruin

  • By Aussie597 on 04-15-19

Great new YA series! Loved it!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-03-19

So excited to have found this promising new YA series! The world-building and mythology is done incredibly well, with a kind of paranormal realm co-existing unseen with the human realm and magically gifted people wielding elemental powers, reminiscent of the avatar universe.

The author does a great job at keeping secrets and because the story is told from Lyric’s pov, the reader is kept as equally in the dark as the heroine. The main and secondary characters are all well-written and interesting and I was drawn into their world very easily.

I loved all the mystery, the adventure, the misdirection and the occasional butterflies in this book!
A couple of the things that also stood out to me, and that I really liked were the importance of Lyric and Braelynn’s friendship and the fact that at a critical juncture in the story Lyric saves herself instead of needing to be rescued by a guy.

Something that bugged me a little was that sometimes information was repeated or stressed a bit too often. Also, Lyric is not always as insightful or take charge as I might have wanted, but the upside is that she has room to grow and truly find herself in the coming books. I hope she’ll be less inclined to think in terms of enemies and us vs. them soon, because otherwise she’ll have a difficult time uniting the two kingdoms in the Maison Realm.

The narrator did a really amazing job! I loved all the different voices she did for the cast. There are a lot of characters, so she certainly had her work cut out for her. The emotion she brought to her performance was incredible, very convincing, and helped a great deal to draw me even more into the story. Lyric’s self-doubt and hesitancy came across especially well.

  • Jagged Ink

  • The Montgomery Ink: Colorado Springs Series, Book 3
  • By: Carrie Ann Ryan
  • Narrated by: Joe Arden
  • Length: 5 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 41
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 40
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 40

Roxie Montgomery met her soul mate when she least expected it. When he asked her to marry her, she thought her happily ever after was only just beginning. Then, she found that walking into the sunset was much harder than her favorite books made it out to be. After a crushing loss, she feels as though she doesn’t know her husband anymore, or rather…she doesn’t know herself.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Love Joe Arden

  • By Sarah on 04-17-19

Original&very moving love story. Amazing narrator!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-17-19

This was a very well-written, intense, emotional story. The sorrow that Carter and Roxie feel is instantly present, as is their despair at seeing the love of their life slipping through their fingers and seemingly being helpless to do anything about it. For a long time we are left guessing what happened to drive them apart, and even when it has to be clear to even the most unobservant reader what happened, it still takes a long time for the characters to actually talk about it and bring it out in the open.

Roxie and Carter are their own worst enemy when it comes to their relationship. When something tragic happens, they don’t know how to cope with that loss as a couple, they no longer open up to each other and get lost in their insecurities. They also can’t count on support from their family, because they keep them in the dark too. Something I had a hard time understanding. The lack of communication, and to such an extreme extent, was something that made it difficult for me to see them as a good match/strong couple though, because to me communication is key in a good relationship.

I enjoyed the story very much, but I was somewhat disappointed in the heroine. I feel she was too focused on her own pain and supposed imperfections, and too passive. Carter always needs to be the first one to make a move, say the difficult things, declare his feelings, put her first in every situation… I thought she took him a bit too much for granted and to me there was an imbalance in their relationship.

Narration: the narration was, in a word, sublime. Joe Arden did a brilliant job in his performance of Jagged Ink. The sadness and anguish that both Carter and Roxie feel comes through so clearly in his voice and helped me get in the right frame of mind to listen to their story. It made me care even more than I might have if I’d just been reading the e-book. His voice has a really warm timbre, very pleasant to listen to and I think he did all the voices extremely well.

  • Among the Living

  • PsyCop, Book 1
  • By: Jordan Castillo Price
  • Narrated by: Gomez Pugh
  • Length: 2 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 707
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 668
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 667

Victor Bayne, the psychic half a PsyCop team, is a gay medium who's more concerned with flying under the radar than in making waves. He hooks up with handsome Jacob Marks, a non-psychic (or "Stiff") from an adjacent precinct at his ex-partner's retirement party, and it seems like his dubious luck has taken a turn for the better. But then a serial killer surfaces who can change his appearance to match any witness' idea of the world's hottest guy.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Perfect narrator for one of my favorite books!

  • By Jesi Lea Ryan on 08-17-14

Gritty romance with a great crime plot! Loved it!!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-27-19

Great story to start off a series. I loved the world-building, which I thought showed a very original perspective on psychics, supernatural powers and demons. It’s actually written in quite a gritty, almost “realistic” way. Taking the wonder and romance out of it almost, and making the universe of the book at once rather dark, threateningly mysterious and mundane. I was intrigued by the idea of pairing “regular” cops with the psycops, and the (ab)use of drugs to help the psycops deal with their abilities.

I really enjoyed the mystery of the serial killer case, which wasn’t easily solved. As we near its conclusion, and Vic and his friends get closer to the killer, things get incredibly intense. Especially while listening to the audiobook of the story. There’s such a sense of urgency and impending disaster… my heart almost couldn’t take the suspense. Very well-written!!
Jacob and Vic have only just started falling for each other and are still in the early days of their relationship, but I have a feeling it’s going to be epic. Loved the final scene so so much!

Narrator: I think Gomez Pugh did an amazing job and really set the mood brilliantly for the story. Outstanding performance, great voices for all the characters, including the women, which isn’t always easy for a male narrator to get right. Pacing and intonation were spot on, really adding to the tension of the more suspenseful scenes in the best way.

  • Obey

  • His Command, Book 1
  • By: Piper Scott
  • Narrated by: Michael Pauley
  • Length: 4 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 92
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 86
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 86

In the dim lights of Aurora’s premier kink club waits an alpha eager to take control. Billionaire Crawford Daniels has bedded submissives before, but he’s never given one his collar. That privilege is reserved for the man who’s strong-willed enough to tell him no, but whose pretty lips always say yes. Crawford wants more than a pet - he wants a partner. Someone to pamper and spoil or punish.  

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Very enjoyable listen!

  • By Crystal on 02-08-19

Enjoyable mpreg story, brilliantly performed!

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-22-19

A very enjoyable, sensual mpreg story, well-written and with detailed world-building. The relationship is a very caring one, and the draw between both MC’s is strong and appealing.
I liked Crawford and Owen and the instant connection between them was written very persuasively. The relationship is a very caring one, and the draw between both men is strong and appealing.
The only thing that bugged me a little was how fast their relationship progressed, especially considering the bdsm aspect. I didn’t entirely get Owen’s willingness to instantly go along with every suggestion, or order rather, of Crawford’s, because they fell into the bdsm part of their relationship so hastily, without first having taken the time to get to know each other and build up trust.
The world-building is detailed and original, but I’d have liked it better if the omega/beta/alpha characteristics had been confined to the physical, rather than the psychological/mental.
Still, this was a very nice story, with a bit of a tragic mystery in Owen’s past and a very sweet happily-ever-after.

The narration was sublime! Michael Pauley is an amazing narrator who never disappoints. He has an incredibly pleasant voice to listen to and his performance was outstanding. I loved his portrayal of Crawford’s and Owen’s voices, his inflexion and pacing, the emotion he brought to the story… Simply brilliant.

  • Master Wanted

  • Rent-a-Dom, Book 2
  • By: Susi Hawke, Piper Scott
  • Narrated by: Nick J. Russo
  • Length: 4 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 51
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 51

Troy Sullivan is the current owner of The Palisade, one of the most popular casinos on the Las Vegas Strip. With more money in the bank than he could spend in a lifetime, and surrounded by yes-men more interested in staying in his good graces than helping him improve his business, Troy craves what he can’t have - someone to tell him “no”. When he discovers Rent-a-Dom, he’s convinced he’s found his solution: a master decades his junior who specializes in financial domination and who won’t so much as let Troy see his face.  

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Master Wanted

  • By <Stacy> @SoCalBookReviews on 02-13-19

Fun and sweet story. Narrator did an awesome job!

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-09-19

This was an entertaining and sweet read. It starts off with the MC’s already in a contractual bdsm-arrangement, though not in an actual relationship. It’s anonymous to an extent, because they only text and talk on the phone. I loved it when they finally did meet! Troy was in for such a surprise!

One of the things I really liked here was the role-reversal. Robin, the Dom in the story is a lot younger than Troy, his sub, who is quite wealthy and owns a successful casino on the Las Vegas Strip. He also seems to be cut out far better for the role of entrepreneur. In the beginning I thought Robin a bit too cold towards Troy, but as the story unfolded a big part of that seems to have been denial to self-protect. Robin and Troy were super sweet together, especially once Robin opened himself up more. Robin and Troy are both a bit careless with regards to certain health issues though, which I found a little incongruous, but it didn’t detract too much from the story.

Narration: I loved how Nick J. Russo brought the characters to life. I’ve not always been as convinced as I was this time, but I have to say I really enjoyed his performance now. I think it’s great how he managed to make Robin the man and Robin the Dom sound so subtly different. He has a very warm and pleasant voice to listen to. This was wonderfully done!

  • The Unseelie Prince

  • The Hawthorn Throne Series, Book 1
  • By: Kaitlyn Abdou
  • Narrated by: Liam Taylor
  • Length: 2 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20

 

Noah Reid has spent his life seeking normalcy after a turbulent childhood with a superstitious mother who refused to answer questions about the father he never knew and instead attempted to impress upon him a real fear of faeries. Despite his mother’s best efforts, Noah finds himself ripped from the life he knows and thrust into a palace of nightmares. Here, he must face the persistent attention of the regent and discover the shocking truth his mother took to her grave.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Original and enthralling

  • By Jen Valencia on 02-08-19

Dark&highly original story. Mesmerizing narration!

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-31-19

This is a very unusual, rather dark novella with a surprising twist. I absolutely loved it!
The author created an amazing, eerie fantasy world. There's an unsettling vibe that runs throughout the story, danger lurking in hidden places, which I thought very well done.
Our MC, Noah Reid, is kidnapped from his home by the Folk, also known as Faeries, though definitely not of the Tinkerbell variety. He's kept as a prisoner and only has one visitor, whom he depends on for food and information. Stockholm syndrome here we come... This prison guard/protector is an enigmatic, powerful figure who sets out to seduce Noah. But to what end?
This is not a romance, at all, but a very intriguing story nonetheless. I can't wait to discover what will happen next in this series.

Narration: This is the first audio book I've heard narrated by Liam Taylor, though I certainly hope it won't be the last. He does a truly outstanding job at creating a sense of mystery and enchantment and he makes the Regent sound almost dangerously mesmerizing.The accent he gives all the Folk, but especially the Regent, is delicious and a joy to listen to.

  • The Hideaway

  • Lavender Shores, Book 5
  • By: Rosalind Abel
  • Narrated by: Kirt Graves
  • Length: 8 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 40
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 38
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 38

Lavender Shores’ resident tattoo artist Connor Clark looks the part - six-foot-six, muscle-bound, and covered in ink - and most definitely doesn’t blend in. Grafted into the Bryant family as a teenager to escape his abusive father, the Bryants saved his life, but Connor has never truly felt a part of the founding family royalty. And if his heart’s desire were revealed, it would betray everything the Bryants have done for him.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Loving Lavender Shores

  • By Erryn Barratt on 02-10-19

Super romantic love story! Best narration ever!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-31-19

What an incredibly emotional story! I love all the couples in this amazing series, but these two are definitely something special.

Connor and Micah get their happy ending, brought with all the romance you could possibly dream of… but they went through so much to get there. I don’t think I’ve ever read about a couple that’s so right for each other, both of them knowing it too, and have them be so cruelly forced apart by “circumstances”. How do you tell your family & friends that you’re in love with someone who is, for all intents and purposes, your brother? Connor doesn’t think he can. Not without losing the family that has come to mean so much to him. Their longing and despair is almost overwhelming at times. I was so happy when they finally chose each other, no matter the possible fall-out. It was a rocky road, but the Bryant family didn’t disappoint in the end. Love them all.
I adore all the other characters (I can’t bring myself to call them secondary in any way), they are all so vibrant and well-written. They have such a “présence” and really help bring to life the wonderful world of Lavender Shores. These books wouldn’t be the same without them.

Narration: Kirt Graves really outdid himself. I simply love his performance, the voices he uses for the MC’s but also for all the other characters, the emotion he brings to the narration... Connor’s voice especially was so right. You could hear his heartbreak, devotion and longing in every word. I’m so happy that Kirt Graves has done all the audiobooks so far, because that way the other characters also continue to sound like themselves.

  • An Unlocked Mind

  • By: K.C. Wells, Parker Williams
  • Narrated by: Joel Leslie
  • Length: 12 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 48
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 44
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 44

Rob Daniels is determined to prove to himself that his brother Alex got it wrong. Alex believes he found love through BDSM; Rob is certain that’s not possible. He even makes several visits to a London club to prove his point. But when he attends the grand opening of Secrets, Rob gets a shock, one that has him fleeing, vowing never to return - until he does and runs into the brick wall that is Dom Vic Prentiss.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • so good such a great surprise

  • By Rebecca Azizov on 12-21-18

Amazing redemption story! All the feels!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-27-19

The Secrets series soars to new heights with this one and to me it really stands out from the other books in the Collars and Cuffs & Secrets universe. I enjoyed reading all the books in these two series, but a couple of them resonated with me more than others and An Unlocked Mind is absolutely joining Dom of Ages at the top of my list.

Rob makes for a very unlikely sub with his cocky attitude, which he never loses, and that’s definitely part of why I adore him so much. The vulnerability he hides behind his bravado and the guilt he struggles with for how he treated his brother tugged at my heartstrings so much. I love the way Rob grows throughout this story, trying so hard to redeem himself, though sometimes stumbling along the way. I’m a sucker for redemption stories, especially of characters who messed up for MC’s from previous books in a series, so Rob was an unexpected treat for me!

Vic is the perfect match for Rob and at times almost too amazing and insightful. I loved seeing such a strong and outwardly tough looking guy be so caring and gentle, oh the magic of a Dom written exactly right. He’s there for Rob even when they barely know each other (or even like each other yet), no strings attached. I also adored him for not being too hung up on “the way things are usually done” and being open to it when Robs steps up to steer their relationship forward. The only thing that could have made this better for me was if Vic had also had a bit more of a growth arc himself. Apart from his love for Rob, he’s pretty much the same guy at the end as he was at the beginning of the book.

I loved seeing Jarod and Eli again, and I especially liked the burgeoning friendship between Jarod and Rob, which gets off to a rocky start because of the awful way Rob treated his brother Alex, who’s one of Jarod’s closest friends. We get the start of a new group of friends here and I hope their circle will continue to grow. Because I need the stories!

Narration: Joel Leslie did a truly wonderful job and I hope he’ll get to do the entire series. I very much enjoyed his performance, as I always do. He takes such care with the accents and has a great take on all the characters, main and secondary. I also love the consistency he can bring to the voices throughout the series. I cannot imagine Jarod or Eli sounding different all of the sudden from how they were in Dom of Ages, for example. That would not be a good thing. At all.

  • Upending Tad Bundle: Volumes 1, 2, 3

  • Upending Tad: A Journey of Erotic Discovery
  • By: Kora Knight
  • Narrated by: Michael Pauley
  • Length: 8 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 145
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 140
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 141

Volumes one, two, and three of the Upending Tad series. In Loser Takes All, Tad's weekend starts out like any other; hitting a college frat party with a handful of buddies. But just as the evening hits its peak, things get up-ended fast. Ditched by his drunken, trolling friends, Tad winds up getting hustled by three jocks playing poker. Now, he's forced to pay his dues in the most outlandish of ways by spending an hour with his victors' favorite flogger, Scott.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • hot as hell

  • By Rebecca Azizov on 05-06-18

Super hot story with amazing narration. Loved it!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-21-19

This is by far the hottest story I’ve ever read!! So incredibly erotic. What a sensual, passionate feast of edging and slow seduction. I loved it!
And lucky me, I started out with the audio-book! I thought my phone was going to catch fire from Michael Pauley's incredible performance. I already knew he was good, but oh man… He makes these two characters come alive and acts them out with such conviction. The steamy scenes are a pleasure to listen to (boy are they ever), but I also very much enjoyed Michel Pauley’s take on their quieter moments and the laughter the characters share.

The dub-con element in the first part of the story was really well written, in such a way that Scott actually comes across as an extremely likable, stand-up guy, as well as making the story super steamy. The build-up of not only sexual tension but also of trust and liking between the two MC’s is expertly done.

Tad has a very difficult time coming to terms with his attraction to Scott. He’s so conflicted, I really felt for him. His inner struggle and his longing for Scott and how he makes Tad feel are a big part of what make this story so captivating and intense. Scott is so patient and understanding with Tad, and at the same time gently persuasive in the best way. They are so amazing together.

What really took this to the next level for me was the obvious deeper connection that starts to grow between Scott and Tad very early on, however subtly described. The little things that betray their joy at being together, the hurt when they try to stay away, the angst ... I was so relieved when Scott finally started to push Tad for more in part 3 and didn’t let him hide from his feelings anymore.
That was (again) so hot… and unexpectedly sweet.

Can’t recommend this enough.