RhiReading News

Dear readers,

Hi Rhireaders! Check out the latest events in the sidebar! Thanks for visiting, be sure and follow me on social media for MORE awesome content.

Did you drop by to request a review or tour stop? I am currently OPEN for review requests for review requests. I have promotional openings for July through November open so please reach out. Just please drop me an email with a polite request and if I'm interested I will reply.

-- Rhi


5.30.2013

Vacation Reading [05/31-06/10] :: Not so weekendy reading...

image credit: Eunice Dokko 
Dear readers,

I hope this weekend finds you well! After the past couple of extremely hard months I've found myself in this sort of weird funk. I'm kind of... well, not bored of reading exactly... but I think I might be rating books a little less and writing less-than-satisfying reviews because I need a break. Unlike a lot of my favorite blogs that have several reviewers, I do this all alone and have for going on 5 years. It's been a year since I took any vacation (and that wasn't a vacation really) so I decided to give myself some time off to just do something not bookish.

It doesn't officially start until Sunday... so if you need me between now and then I might be available but otherwise from today until June 10th I'm planning on a NO BLOGGING week. The hubs is taking a few days off and the school year is ending so it'll be a busy time anyway.

What will I be working on while I'm away? The Eternity Cure and William Shakespeare's Star Wars. I've been looking forward to both so it's awesome I got them through Amazon Vine. Since I'm planning on doing more non-reading things I don't think I'll read anything else but I do have a few reads I should get to. If time permits I'll spice things up with Under the Covers by Rebecca Zanetti. Because every vacation needs a little steam right? ;)

I'm hoping to get to do a lot of stuff I never have time for like playing The Sims and getting a hair cut too. Maybe do some gardening and spring cleaning type crap. Not that either of those is really exciting me. We've had really chilly, rainy weather that's supposed to stick around for most of next week too... maybe that means I'll do a bunch of baking. What would you do with a few days off?

Anywho, I have a lot to get rolling before a night out with friends tonight and a vacation so I'm off... drop by and tell me what you're reading and be sure to come back on the 10th to see what I actually accomplished during my time away. ♥ -- Rhi

Review: South of Surrender by Laura Kaye

South of Surrender (Hearts of the Anemoi #3) by Laura Kaye
Paranormal Romance, Mythology
Paperback $14.00 (400 pages, ENTANGLED SELECT)
Ebook $5.99

She's the only one who can see through his golden boy façade to the broken god within...
Chrysander Notos, Supreme God of the South Wind and Summer, is on a mission: save Eurus from his death sentence, and prove his troubled brother can be redeemed. But Eurus fights back, triggering vicious summer storms that threaten the mortal realm, dangerously drain Chrys, and earn the ire of the Olympic gods who ordered Eurus dead.
Laney Summerlyn refuses to give up her grandfather's horse farm, despite her deteriorating vision. More than ever, she needs the organized routine of her life at Summerlyn Stables, until a ferocious storm brings an impossible--and beautiful--creature crashing down from the heavens.
Injured while fighting Eurus, Chrys finds himself at the mercy of a mortal woman whose compassion and acceptance he can't resist. As they surrender to the passion flaring between them, immortal enemies close in, forcing Chrys to choose between his brother and the only woman who's ever loved the real him.

Author Site: www.laurakayeauthor.com

As emotional as NoN and as action-packed as WoW! (5 stars)

Hearts of the Anemoi fans have had a tough wait for this one, but it was so worth it! After spending the past two days trying to re-blurb SOUTH OF SURRENDER for my review, I realized it just doesn't need it. lol

SOUTH OF SURRENDER is very much a pivot-point for the series arc but Kaye pulls it off without losing the romantic storyline. Eurus established himself as the big bad in WEST OF WANT and he proves to be just as wretched this time around. When Chrys finds himself thrust into Laney's life his desires quickly fall into loving and protecting her but he has some issues. The Anemoi family has a complicated history and Chrys does not like to be touched, which makes him both compelling and somehow feels a little disjointed in execution. Any reader who has personal experience with abuse will understand why Chrys struggles with physical intimacy and cheer as his relationship with Laney deepens. I admit, I didn't quite buy how his touch-issues didn't have a bigger impact on the relationship but that was the only thing I didn't like in this story.

What really makes SOUTH OF SURRENDER a stand-out for fans of the big names in the paranormal romance genre is how well it carries a strong series plot thread while bringing Laney and Chrys to a HEA. There is an even stronger family element this time around and I just loved having everyone back again... dare I say I felt like the invisible cousin in the room? ;) Boreas' inclusion in particular really built on the series arc. If you're fond of paranormal families or brotherhoods you will love this series, but especially this particular book.

Emotionally charged and action-packed, SOUTH OF SURRENDER, is a must-read this summer. With Kaye's steamy scenes that scorch the page, refreshingly balanced adaptation of the mythological world, and wonderful characterization this is one book you should not miss. It sets up for EAST OF ECSTASY with some pretty big events and will leave you breathless in anticipation. Loved it!



Notes: ARC received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:
 

5.29.2013

Review: Don't Bite the Bridesmaid by Tiffany Allee

Don't Bite the Bridesmaid (Sons of Kane #1) by Tiffany Allee
Category Romance, Contemporary Romance, Paranormal Romance, Vampires
Ebook $2.99 (209 pages, ENTANGLED COVET)
Alice Shepard needs one thing: a date for her sister's wedding. And not just any date. A hunk who will make her fiancé rue the day he left her for her best friend. Her drop-dead gorgeous neighbor fits the bill—even if he is a bit quirky and never comes out during the day—and Alice has downed just enough appletinis to ask him. But she makes it quite clear that there will be no funny business.
Spending a week on a cruise ship full of humans while sleeping close to his sexy next-door neighbor sounds like a helluva bad idea to vampire Noah Thorpe. But his friends need time to get him out of a shotgun wedding—a vampire bonding that will tie his fate to a female vampire he's never met. And Alice's offer comes at just the right time.
What could possibly go wrong?

Author Site: tiffanyallee.com

Could easily be non-paranormal... (2 stars)

Read the blurb and you get the gist of DON'T BITE THE BRIDESMAID's plot and unfortunately, the story is exactly what the blurb gives you. I know that the Covet imprint leans toward category trope first and paranormal element second but this is a great example of when that keeps a story from being great. Zero world building. A cardboard cut-out for a hero. A trope that's executed in a choppy, painful to read way. I've read Allee's work before and liked it but I had similar complaints with it.

As much as I tried to bring myself to give this 3 stars, I can't. Noah was an awful hero and I felt nothing for him. Not dislike or adoration or sympathy... pure ambivalence. He has no personality. Alice is a little more fleshed out but lacks any really endearing qualities. An overload of secondary characters to keep track of and mentions of characters and past events that the reader seems expected to already know the full story on make it really hard to follow for such a short story.

The saving grace on DON'T BITE THE BRIDESMAID is actually the steamy content. If you enjoy a passionate love scene, Allee delivers well. I was also quite intrigued by Kane, the 'father' of Noah and whom the series is named for. I do hope he gets a story of his own eventually as it'd be great seeing a non-Caucasian hero for a change. I just wish those two elements had been enough to engage me as a reader.

If your tastes lean more toward the contemporary romance side and you don't really care about the details of the paranormal world this will be a great category read. But if your tastes run more along mine, leaning more toward romantic Urban Fantasy, I'd say give this one a pass and give Angela McCallister's BAD MOUTH (another Covet tale featuring vampires) a read.



Other Reviews:
Seeing Night

Notes: ARC received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

5.28.2013

Release Day Blitz: SOUTH OF SURRENDER by Laura Kaye [Excerpt & Giveaway]


I am thrilled to welcome Chrysander Notos to the world today! Chrys is the hero of South of Surrender, the third book in my Greek-mythology inspired Hearts of the Anemoi series. The Anemoi were wind gods the Greeks associated with controlling the wind, the weather, and the seasons, and as the summer god, Chrys is the hottest of them all! Need more proof? Check out this hot excerpt and the giveaway that follows!
Unable to resist the draw to her any longer, Chrys claimed her mouth, devouring, searching, taking.

Laney froze, then was right there with him.

Their tongues met, dueled, twirled. He fisted his hand in her hair and guided her, deepening when he wanted, restraining her when he needed.

Her hands slid up his chest toward his neck.

Chrys gasped into the kiss, but fought the reflexive desire to pull away. Instead, he pushed her back one step, then another, until her back encountered the door. He grabbed her arms and pressed them to the surface over her head. The control flooded relief through him and fueled his arousal another notch.

“I want to touch you,” she whispered around a kiss.

His brain scrambled for a moment, and then he wedged his body in tighter, the ridge of his cock coming in snug against her belly. She unleashed a strangled moan as Chrys plundered her mouth, relished her sweet taste, bathed in her life-giving heat.

Good gods, her body was absolutely alive with her arousal. She clenched and unclenched her hands, her arm muscles flexing where he restrained her. Her abdomen writhed against his, creating a maddening friction against his erection. Her thighs shifted and squeezed.

It was only with the barest of restraint that he resisted willing her clothing away, turning her to face the wall, and tugging her hips out so he could bury himself deep.

Lost in the imagery, Chrys didn’t notice the change in her movements until she slowly dragged her injured leg up the outside of his. Her wrists pressed against his hold and a yearning moan worked up her throat. “Chrys,” she whimpered, her thigh moving higher and wrapping around.

His pulse lunged into a sprint. Damnit. He pulled back and stepped away, the phantom feeling of her flesh trapping his spiking fear through him. “I’m sorry,” he said, rubbing his lips, regret a rock in his stomach. He could still feel her, taste her. Making sure she was steady on her feet, he dropped his hands from holding hers.


GIVEAWAY!
Win 1 of 5 $50 gift cards to winners’ choice of Amazon/B&N/iTunes!
 
HOW TO ENTER?
Did you have a favorite line from the excerpt? Comment with your email address to enter to win! Open to international! Giveaway runs for one day and ends at midnight PST on May 28!


Visit more participating Blitz Day sites for more excerpts and more ways to win! And look out for the South of Surrender Blog Tour to start next week with more excerpts and giveaways! Check out the awesome early reviews coming in for the book, too!


Thanks for reading!
Laura


About South of Surrender:


She's the only one who can see through his golden boy façade to the broken god within...

Chrysander Notos, Supreme God of the South Wind and Summer, is on a mission: save Eurus from his death sentence and prove his troubled brother can be redeemed. But Eurus fights back, triggering vicious storms that threaten the mortal realm and dangerously drain Chrys.

Laney Summerlyn refuses to give up her grandfather's horse farm, despite her deteriorating vision. More than ever, she needs the organized routine of her life at Summerlyn Stables, until a ferocious storm brings an impossible—and beautiful—creature crashing down from the heavens.

Injured while fighting Eurus, Chrys finds himself at the mercy of a mortal woman whose compassion and acceptance he can't resist. As they surrender to the passion flaring between them, immortal enemies close in, forcing Chrys to choose between his brother and the only woman who's ever loved the 
real him.
Buy at Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks
Add to your Goodreads Shelf!


About Laura Kaye:


Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over a dozen books in contemporary and paranormal romance. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. She lives in Maryland with her husband, two daughters, and cute-but-bad dog, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.



5.23.2013

Review: Against the Wall by Rebecca Zanetti

Against the Wall (Maverick Montana #1) by Rebecca Zanetti
Category Romance, Contemporary Romance
Ebook $2.99 (168 pages, BRAZEN)
Never challenge a cowboy in the courtroom…
Surveying the proposed site for a high-end golf course should have been a breeze for spunky Landscape Architect Sophie Smith. But when this born-and-bred city girl is suddenly—and quite literally—swept off her feet by a sexy cowboy on horseback, she realizes that the country life has some serious (and seriously steamy!) possibilities. That is, until she finds out exactly who her smokin’-hot wrangler really is.
Cowboy and Tribal lawyer Jake Lodge is desperately trying to block the development. And if that means playing hardball—and being every inch the shark lawyer—so be it. But Sophie is a distraction he didn’t expect. A distraction that makes his blood burn.
Two different worlds. Two opposing sides. And when they finally give into the exquisite temptation, the consequences will shake the foundations of both of their lives…

Author Site: website

The Montanan Reader Stamp of Approval (4 stars)

I have to dive right in and say that I was worried I would hate this book. I'd recently read one of Zanetti's paranormals and hated the Alpha hero more than any I've ever read. Two things made me decide to give AGAINST THE WALL a read: #1 her writing style is awesome and pulls you in quickly and #2 as with any Montana set books that come my way, I feel compelled as a resident to make sure they feel authentic. I'm happy to report that Zanetti did both while still maintaining the slightly over-the-top feel you expect from category romances.

While the blurb actually serves the basic jist of the story up very well it doesn't give you enough to know that this has a great 'small town' feel to it. While Maverick might not be a real town (it's a ski resort) it's got the ficticious makings of what my state is known for. I really enjoyed the focus on the tribe in particular as tribal issues aren't something you see in this genre much and they're a key part of Montana's culture.

While it took a while for Jake to win me over, it was easy to like Sophie. She's talented, intelligent, and in need of a true family. If you're a sucker for a hero or heroine who's essentially alone and finds themselves welcomed into a big family with open arms you'll really enjoy the cast of secondary characters that solidify the romance. I'm trying to avoid spoilers with much of this but without Jake's family the story just wouldn't be as endearing and the set-up for sequels is great.

I only had one real issue with the story and it's a total spoiler so I won't go into it but if you don't care for common category romance tropes you might wanna scream at the book as much as I did. There's one big 'oh come on... seriously... you guys are idiots' event that had me shaking my fist in dismay but if you are a long-time category nut it's a popular one I think you may love. It does make for good story, it's just one I felt both Jake and Sophie were too smart for.



Other Reviews:
Harlequin Junkie
Sizzling Hot Books
Reading Between the Wines Book Club

Notes: Review copy received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

5.22.2013

Review: Rules of Entanglement by Gina L. Maxwell

Rules of Entanglement (Fighting for Love #2) by Gina L. Maxwell
Category Romance, Contemporary Romance, Erotic
Ebook $3.79 (219 pages, ENTANGLED: BRAZEN)
Seven days. And seven rules to break…
District Attorney Vanessa MacGregor firmly believes that structure and order are the stuff that dreams are made of. Happiness can be planned—and it starts with the seven rules she’s laid out for her future. But as she’s organizing her best friend’s wedding in Hawaii, all of Vanessa’s best-laid plans are about to meet their match in a wickedly hot MMA fighter…
Jackson "Jax" Maris is focused on surfing, training, and fighting. That is, until he opens up his big mouth and finds himself having to pretend he’s engaged to his little sister’s best friend, Vanessa. When they’re forced to share a romantic bungalow, however, their little charade suddenly takes a turn for the seriously sexy. And while Jax is definitely not part of Vanessa’s long-term plan, he has seven days—and seven naughty nights—to turn her seven-rule plan upside down.

Author Site: website

Enjoyable characters, flimsy plot... (3 stars)

When Jax Maris, brother of SEDUCING CINDERELLA's Lucie, gets stuck helping her BFF, Vanessa MacGregor, finalize Lucie's wedding plans things get sultry in Hawaii. Vanessa lives by her own special set of rules. Rules intended to protect her from reliving past hurts. But the disciplined D.A. isn't totally immune to the laid-back surfer boy charm of her best friend's older brother. Jackson is a smoldering MMA fighter hiding from his own secrets and determined to get Vanessa to let her guard down. When one little lie has the pair forced into pretending to be engaged, the rule breaking begins to snowball.

Jax might not know why Vanessa needs her rules but if he wants more than a fling he'll have to come clean... and hope he has a fighting chance at making her believe that sometimes the rules need to be broken.

As much as I wanted to love RULES OF ENTANGLEMENT, there was just something missing. I've decided part of the 'meh' factor is that SEDUCING CINDERELLA is a really hard book to write a sequel to. It was that phenomenal. Keeping that in mind I really did like both Jax and Vanessa. Together there was great chemistry and apart they were both compelling, a little wounded but not broken. I'm not a fan of any trope that focuses on a character who lives by a literal set of rules and Vanessa's, while understandable in their motivation, felt really ridiculous to me. Especially since I found them to conflict with her personality... as if she made them to keep herself in line rather than to truly protect her heart.

While the steamy scenes were enjoyable and I liked Jax and Vanessa the overall plotline was really dull. I enjoy a soapy fake-engagement from time to time but this really wasn't one. It was them pretending to be Lucie and Reid to fool an exclusive wedding planner. Which meant a lot of plodding along doing nothing interesting and then a nice flirty scene concluded with a great dirty romp. Not totally bad but not enough to really make it a read I want to do again. I did, however, really enjoy the look at Jax training and the MMA scene, it was a nice break from the usual.

Ultimately, I just didn't enjoy RULES OF ENTANGLEMENT that much and it's very much the result of it's predecessor being so awesome. One Maxwell's fans definitely shouldn't miss, especially for the late entrance of Lucie and Reid and the conclusion, but one newbies to her work shouldn't read as a first.



Other Reviews:
Dear Author
Happily Ever After-Reads
Books vs. Boys
Sugar and Spice and Everything Naughty

Notes: Review copy received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

5.21.2013

Guest Post: Author Angela McCallister [BAD MOUTH Blog Tour + giveaways!]

 
The dangers of friending an author
(AKA How to get sucked into a book)

I’m an author, which really means no one is safe around me. Whether I’m writing a paranormal world or alien characters, I won’t hesitate to put you in a book. You might be surprised how much of an author’s life makes it onto the page.

In Bad Mouth, Ezra, the hero Kade’s best friend, is a powerful vampire. He’s compelling, and I know this because all who’ve read Bad Mouth are waiting eagerly to read more about him. He’s funny, seemingly light-hearted, but with a darkness you only see the edges of. What you might not guess is that he’s based from my real-life encounter with Alex Skarsgard, not his alter-ego as Eric, but the man. I spent half the day with Alex when he filmed scenes of Battleship on my Destroyer. Let’s get this out of the way: yes, I touched him, hugged him, and got to be close to his sexy, masculine scent *sigh* But he was funny and compassionate and down-to-earth, and he left a big impression on me, enough to make him a character in my book.

5.20.2013

Review: Bad Mouth by Angela McCallister

Bad Mouth by Angela McCallister
Category Romance, Paranormal Romance, Vampires
Ebook $2.99 (180 pages, ENTANGLED: COVET)
After her ex-husband’s obsession with vampires, Valerie Craig is on a mission to stop transformations. Of all vampires, Kade Rollins is the worst of the worst, but when multiple murders plague Seattle, Val is forced to enlist his aid. Kade’s crude wit and seductive nature attract her like no other, but she can’t ignore his violence toward his human servants, no matter her yearning to forget.
She’s torn when she learns Kade may be behind the murders. Val's worked hard to protect humans from vampires, but the truth surrounding the murders could ignite a bloody battle between their races, one humans are sure to lose. Someone is pulling strings to build a vampire army and spark the war—setting Kade up to kick it off. But if she trusts the vampire prince, she risks her job, her integrity, and her heart if he betrays her as all the men in her life have.

Author Site: angelamccallister.com

Crisp world building. Great series starter. (4 stars)

McCallister really pulls the everyday category paranormal romance out of the ordinary with BAD MOUTH. With crisp world-building that establishes a dual-caste vampire society living side-by-side with humans this could easily have become a strong fabric for an urban fantasy or full-length paranormal romance series. I'm impressed with how well she pulled it off in such a short format without completely veering outside of the trope-y goodness categories are known for.

Kade is the cocky vampire tasked with helping Val and her partner solve a slew of murders that are causing tension in Seattle. She dislikes him from the start but there's no denying the growing attraction between them. Well-bred and on the serious side she's annoyed with Kade's crass language and blunt way of saying things, yet it grows on her as the story progresses. A relationship between them is a really bad idea considering that he's a vampire prince and she's working on legislation to make all vampire transformations illegal. The sensual tension sparking between them, however, just can't be denied.

This is one of those yummy enemies-to-lovers type stories that somehow flows so organically you forget they shouldn't be able to make it work. The steamy scenes practically melted my poor ereader and Kade's bad mouth made me blush more than a few times! But what really helps this one be a great series starter is the small cast of secondary characters. I'm well known for latching onto secondaries and while I liked Killian and Alice—who are the couple in the next series entry—I just love Ezra, so here's hoping McCallister writes a story for him too. There's a lot of room to dig around in this unique vampire society so fans of lengthier fiction might love BAD MOUTH as a palate cleansing read between longer ones.

Love a good dirty-talkin' hero? Kade's your man! Salivate for enemies-to-lovers without feuding families involved? BAD MOUTH's just what you're looking for. If you love your PNR with the world of the paranormals open to the humans ala True Blood, this one is a must read.



Notes: ARC received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

5.16.2013

Review: A Riveting Affair (anthology)

A Riveting Affair Anthology by Candace Havens, Lily Lang, & Patricia Eimer
Steampunk, Romance, Anthology
Ebook $2.99 (249 pages, EVER AFTER)
Beauty and the Clockwork Beast
Rose Verney wants to fulfill her father’s dying request: to complete construction of the teleportation device he designed. Knowing just who can help her succeed, she seeks out Sebastian Cavendish, her father’s brilliant former student.
Sebastian hasn’t left his home since he returned from the Civil War. He's a broken man, his prosthetics a reminder of the terrible destruction his inventions brought to the battlefield. He wants nothing to do with Rose and her father's masterpiece, but when she barges into his abandoned lab and begins construction, it’s everything he can do to resist getting involved. Especially when she charms her way into his monstrous heart.
Demon Express
Professor Maisy Clark, professional demon hunter, is on the trail of an evil scientist responsible for the deaths of hundreds. Julian is worse than the monsters he creates, but he's also obsessed with Maisy and willing to kill anyone who gets too close to her.
Just when she thinks she has Julian cornered, the sexy marshall Jake Calloway insists the investigation is his, and everything goes to hell. Maisy came to Texas to corner the scientist whose macabre experiments have taken so many lives, and Calloway is just another distraction she doesn’t need. Julian is her responsibility, one she’s not about to share. Even if Calloway can help, Julian will know Maisy is falling for the marshall, and she's not willing to risk his life.
The Clockwork Bride
When engineer Aida Mulvaney attends a masquerade ball at the home of a staunch Luddite earl with a personal vendetta against her father’s company, she doesn’t expect to end the night married to the earl’s son Julian Capshaw, a brilliant engineer in his own right. The marriage will allow both of them to pursue their love of science, without interfering parents and ridiculous social stigmas. Though they escape to the Continent to start new lives, Julian’s father will have none of his heir’s disobedience. Before long, a marriage begun for the sake of convenience becomes a union of passion, but will it survive the machinations of an earl determined to destroy everything they love?


Pretty good starter stories for Steampunk Romance newbies... (4 stars)

As a pretty avid reader of steampunk romances I was very excited to see what this anthology from Entangled Publishing's Ever After imprint had to offer. Having previously read both Havens and Eimer I was pretty sure I would love it. Each story has a pretty unique premise and blends both steampunk elements and a romance well.

[DEMON EXPRESS by Candace Havens], was definitely not my favorite of the bunch. I just couldn't quite feel this mesh of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, steampunk-ish (I admit the tech didn't quite feel truly steampunk), Frankenstein, and wild west coming together. It had a very choppy feel and I didn't care for either the hero or heroine. There's definite potential but I think this could have fleshed better in a longer format where there was more time to understand the villain's origins. Not horrid, but one of those short stories that just falls short of its potential. (3 stars)

[THE CLOCKWORK BRIDE by Patricia Eimer], an Irish engineer and a wealthy earl from opposing families join forces in a marriage of convenience. Great premise! It's a little sexy, kinda funny, and plenty adventurous. This is the first story I've read from Eimer outside of her LUCK OF THE DEVIL series and while not as hysterically funny it's a great stretch of her talent as a writer. I really enjoyed Aida and Julian's banter but especially seeing their marriage of convenience go from friendly admiration to something more. If you love this classic trope and want to try steampunk this is a great one to start with! (4 stars)

[BEAUTY AND THE CLOCKWORK BEAST by Lily Lang], I had never heard of Lang before picking this anthology up and her offering was my favorite of the collection. A wounded hero and a heroine desperate to grant her father's last wish. They make for a dashing pair and my inner nerd just loved the science-y stuff. This is a great example of steampunk romance, one of the best short stories I've seen in the genre in regard to making the two mesh flawlessly. Tinkering and automatons, tea and kisses... yep, this one hit all my favorite parts of the genre nicely. One I also highly recommend for those who are new to the genre but even more so for those who already love it. (5 stars)

On the whole, it's a nice starting place for readers looking for a taste of romance in their steampunk or vice versa. I would love to see Entangled Ever Afters put out another anthology of this sort!



Notes: Review copy received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

5.15.2013

Cover Reveal: Once Upon a Darkness by Aria Kane [+ giveaway!]

 
Once Upon a Darkness by Aria Kane will be available from Entranced Publishing June 17!
Gretchen and her twin brother, Hank, were abandoned to a zombie horde when they were five years old. Intended to be a sacrifice by their zealot parents, they were instead rescued by The Company. Raised to become soldiers in the war against zombies, they now provide safe passage through danger zones, one contract at a time.
Clint's only skill is war, but he's weary of killing other men. When his contract with the Marines runs out, he takes a job on Gretchen's team, hoping that the search-and-rescue life will suit him better.
On Clint's second day, their four-man team is attacked, drugged, and taken to a prison full of frightened civilians. The only way in or out is by helicopter and, here, their enemies are human. One by one, the captives are culled from the holding area. Rumors say the facility director uses the prisoners as experimental subjects for the testing of a zombie cure.
When Hank is taken, Clint and Gretchen must put aside their personal feelings and find a way out of the prison, surrounded by thousands of starving zombies, before Hank becomes just one more disposable guinea pig in the hands of a twisted mad woman.
 
Add Once Upon a Darkness on Goodreads!

About the author:
Aria Kane is a recovering mechanical engineer and romance writer. She lives in sunny Florida with a 60 lb mutt who thinks he's a Chihuahua. You can learn more about her at ariakane.com or on Twitter @aria_kane.



To celebrate the Once Upon a Darkness cover reveal, Aria is giving away a $20 giftcard and an ecopy of an Entranced book of the winner’s choice.

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5.14.2013

Cover Reveal: Undying Destiny by Jessica Lee [+ giveaway!]

 
Coming June 2013 from Entangled EDGE!
 
Kenric St. James is out for revenge. Over 300 years ago, an ancient female vampire turned him against his will and killed the woman he loved. He’s spent more than a century building an Enclave of warrior vampires who have sworn to defend humanity against his evil sire and her minions. But when Kenric finds a woman he finally burns to claim as his own again, Kenric knows loving her means giving his sire another target.

Emily Ross just wanted a fresh start. She’s a survivor, coming off the tail end of an abusive relationship, and craves time alone to learn who she is and to save the home that holds her heart. The last thing she needed was a controlling, alpha male calling all the shots.
 
Meeting Kenric might just have changed her mind, though. He is wrong for her in all the right ways. But in order to keep her heart from breaking, he first has to keep the hoards of evil vamps from stealing her very breath.
Pre-order UNDYING DESTINY: Amazon | B&N

About Jessica Lee:

Jessica Lee lives in the southeastern United States with her husband and son. She loves writing and can't wait for that quiet time each day when her son is in school, and she can get lost in another place and world with the fantastical, sexy creatures in her head.
She's a member of Romance Writers of America, Carolina Romance Writers.
Connect with Jessica Lee



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Q & A with the authors of When Honey Got Married [+ giveaway!]

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Dear readers,

If you've been a RhiReading fan for more than a year you'll recall that at about this time last year I was in a frenzy of preparation for one of the hubs and I's closest friend's wedding. As the token chick friend in our little group I didn't get the honor of being part of the wedding party. Then our daughter's getting sick the day before the wedding—when we were very far from home, no less—kind of destroyed my attempt to be involved at all. I couldn't even see the ceremony because she freaked out when she couldn't get down and run around and it was overall (for me) a total disaster. I had to scram back to the place we were staying without even tasting the food or doing more than congratulating our good friend and his new bride.

Everyone has a funny or disastrous or amazing wedding story they could tell so I had hoped to ask our authors if they could share one. Alas, someone else already had the same idea so I went with the next best idea... enjoy!

-- Rhi


If money were no object and you could have had (or have, as the case may be) your dream wedding, what elements would be the key to making your dream come true? (ie. destination/location, theme, colors, special guests, etc)?


Anna Cleary:
 
First things first: The dress.
 
That fairytale dress Grace Kelly wore in To Catch a Thief would do very nicely. Well, it helped catch Cary Grant, and a prince of Monaco. Of course, I would need to look as lovely in it as Grace did. (Grace Kelly, that is. Not Grace Henson, from When Honey Got Married.) But since money is no object, perhaps I could arrange to look like Grace Kelly, and Grace Henson?
 
Or would that be a bit tasteless?
 
No, I think you’re right. After my recent trip to Louisiana I’ve become rather sensitive on the issue of taste, so I suspect I’d better leave the two Graces’ lovely images unduplicated. Instead, I’ll settle for a striking resemblance to Scarlett Johanssen, who just happens to bear an astonishing resemblance to Eve Fortescue in When Honey Got Married
 
The location.
 
I’ve always fancied myself in a French chateau somewhere in the region of the Loire. I don’t meant to imply that I have a particular craving for aristocracy—well, certainly not the type of craving that Nina Moreau had in When Honey Got Married .
Hers could be described as insatiable.
 
The Clearys are by their very nature a genteel tribe, having descended from Guaire the Hospitable, King of Connacht, and they know a thing or two about serving foie gras and cucumber sandwiches on the left - hand bank of a meandering stream to a champagne- guzzling crowd.
 
So imagine a graceful old chateau of weathered stone and dark green shutters, lush green vineyards stretching as far as the eye can see, and a grassy knoll dotted with red poppies, all overlooking the River Loire. On that knoll imagine a celebrant in a magnificently embroidered robe (possibly designed by Karl Lagerfeld. Heck, I wouldn’t be surprised if Karl himself was the celebrant!)
 
The guests.
 
That one’s easy. The guest list would include all the people in the world I love, including some I admire from a distance. Shirley McLaine for example would certainly get an invite after her performance in When Honey Got Married—Oh. No, sorry, that was Eve’s Aunt Minna—but the delightful Shirley will definitely have a special place at the bridal breakfast.
Miss Kimberly Lang will be there, as well as Misses Ally Blake and Kelly Hunter. They can all be maids of honour, and I have absolute faith that such creative artists as these ladies undoubtedly are should choose their own spectacular gowns, so long as they leave their veils and tiaras at home!
 
Pippa Montgomery may be invited, but only if she promises to wear something appropriate this time, not to try to outshine the bride, and not to blog indiscreetly about the affair afterwards. With Pippa’s history at other people’s weddings, that would amount to a piece of shameless hypocrisy!
 
Last but by no means least: The groom.
 
Well, you all know my dilemma. With so many to choose from— Johnny Depp (and he adores the chateau life, make no mistake), Clooney, Placido Domingo, David Gandy, André Agassi...The list goes on—I’ll simply have to close my eyes and take a blind stab.
Who do you think I’ll come up with?

About Anna Cleary:
Anna Cleary is an affectionate Australian who discovered that writing is an even more powerful means of escape than reading. To this end she writes romance novels that are flirty and funny, sometimes weepy or dramatic, always emotional, and often piping hot.
Anna enjoys her family and friends, adores music and the arts, has an ongoing love affair with Italy, and is kept under constant surveillance by a thoughtful and deeply sensitive cat.
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Kelly Hunter:
 
If Anna’s taking us to a chateau on the banks of the Loire, I’m keen to bring the party to Bora Bora, Tahiti, for a relaxed beach wedding. Not that I’ll be wearing a bikini – the gown will be frothy and couture and probably not white. Think the colours of the Mamma Mia movie, and let’s have Meryl and Pierce and most of the gang from that movie there as well.

The food – we’re talking fruits of the tropics and the sea, with a French Polynesian twist. Formal table settings and crisp linens and candlelight, right there on the beach.

After the feasting, dancing and toasting, guests can meander back to their bungalows built over the lagoon, and surface for breakfast in the morning when they please. That and the detox spa is on the house ;)


About Kelly Hunter:
Australian born Kelly Hunter is a USA Today bestselling author, a three time Romance Writers of America RITA finalist and loves writing to the short category romance form.
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


Kimberly Lang:
 
My now-hubby was in the US on a Visa that was about to expire, so we had a run to the courthouse followed by lunch at the same restaurant where I was working at the time (because we were broke and I used my 25% employee discount). It was simple and quick, and honestly, I really wouldn’t change a thing. Right now, though, I’m quite taken with Honey’s wedding – it’s over the top in many ways, but everyone seemed to have a fabulous time, and it inspired four other women to find love as well! So I’d have Honey’s wedding – and I’d let Ally Blake run wild and put back in everything I made her take out of the book (except the hummingbirds. That’s non-negotiable, ladies!).

About Kimberly Lang:
USA Today bestselling author Kimberly Lang believes that romance should have both sizzle and sass. A former ballet dancer and English teacher, Kimberly now does yoga and writes the kind of books she always loved to read. She’s a Southern belle with a trouble-making streak and a great love of strong heroes and even stronger heroines.
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Ally Blake:
 
Well, now I consider my marriage just about the perfect day.
I was married in Las Vegas. No elopement for this girl; we gave our families time to save up and they all came with us!
And talk about stress-free. Apart from having the dresses made and buying the suits in Australia before we flew out, we organized the entire thing - from the chapel, to the flowers, hair and make-up, limo, after party venue - in the two days leading up to the event! The sun shone, the birds sang, and it cost us pittance ;).
Now...if I had to do it all over again - I've been married ten years now, surely we've had a good enough run ;) - and money was no object... You know what? I'd do it all the same.
I mean, no amount of money could get you a run-in with the truly delightful Tony Curtis in the lobby of the MG Grand during which - after hearing I was getting married that Wednesday - the superstar said, with a gorgeous glint in his eye, "There's a lot of time between now and Wednesday."
Considering I got married in Las Vegas
See now I've been there and done that.

About Ally Blake:
Australian writer Ally Blake is a redhead, a footy fan, a devotee of the language of Aaron Sorkin; she is addicted to stationery and M&Ms, weak in the face of Italians and firefighters, married to a spectacular and ever-patient man, mum to three beings of pure delight, and a firm believer in love, luck, and fairies. She is also a best-selling author with more than twenty-five fun, flirty romance novels under her belt with over three million copies of her books sold worldwide.
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
 
About WHEN HONEY GOT MARRIED:

Four high school friends and a high society bride reunite to celebrate the wedding of the year with the sexy, successful men who steal their hearts and set their skin aflame...

A wedding planner should never mix business and pleasure, but Grace couldn’t resist breaking rule number one for a hot night with her high school crush!

Eve hoped to make one last play for the groom-who-got-away…but instead the down-on-her-romantic-luck actress instead found herself in dark corners with his successful, seductive cousin.

The sister of the bride needed a date of convenience and who better than her hazel-eyed, mysterious co-worker? If only Nina could keep her hands off his perfect body until she learned his true identity…

The groom proposed to her eight years earlier, but it was the steamy kiss that Pippa shared with his brother the night she left town that haunted her memories. Now she’s back and sharing much more than just kisses.

Nothing was going to ruin Honey’s wedding to the man of her dreams. And she has just the wedding surprise for her beloved groom!

More WHEN HONEY GOT MARRIED: Website, Goodreads, Facebook, & Twitter
Where to buy: Amazon | B&N | Kobo 


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