Archive for the ‘Fantasy Romance’ Category

The Secrets of Her Past-Emilie Rose

March 13, 2014

The Secrets of Her Past
Emilie Rose
Harlequin SuperRomance, Mar 4 2014, $6.75
ISBN: 9780373608331

While undergoing lung cancer treatment, Danny Drake orders his son Adam to bring Madison home to run his veterinary practice while he fights the disease. Adam argues with his dad that his late brother Andrew’s widow was selfish and didn’t want the baby she lost along with her husband during an ice storm in which she drove too fast six years ago.

Danny travels to Quincey, North Carolina to take Madison “no longer a Drake” Monroe the seven hours to Norcross, but she refuses. Angry with her while misunderstanding her no, he says his late sibling was right to call her a cold selfish SOB; while she hides the truth from his family so that they can retain their paragon image of Andrew. Still feeling she owes her veterinary mentor to hear it from her lips, Maddy drives to tell her ex-father-in-law. Danny’s wife Helen angrily pleads with her to help as she did not want to lose another Drake male. Reluctantly Maddy agrees but on her terms. As Maddy keeps two practices afloat, Adam reassesses his ex-in-law due to her dedication to her patients and their owners, and his father. Soon two revelations hammer his soul and heart: that his brother lied to him and that he loves his late sibling’s widow.

This is a warm second chance at family drama starring a wonderful cast. Though the late Andrew comes across as a selfish lazy loser with no redeeming qualities when he lived, readers will enjoy this compassionate healing storyline.

Harriet Klausner

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Shadowmaster-Susan Krinard

March 13, 2014

Shadowmaster
Susan Krinard
Harlequin Nocturne, Mar 4 2014, $5.75
ISBN: 9780373885916

In the San Francisco enclave, Aegis Director of Operations Chen assigns half-dhampir agent Phoenix Stryker to uncover the identity of Draken and prevent this killer from assassinating a senator. Chen chose Stryker for this dangerous mission because she believes this lethal Opiri assassin is most likely heterosexual and thus unable to resist the call of dhampir blood.

Getting inside his camp, Stryker meets Draken, but instead of being a deadly monster as her superior described, she finds a caring person who wants to end the ugly exiling of criminals to Erebus where they are used for sustenance or slaves by the Opiri. He also has a personal agenda to avenge the destruction of his loved ones. However, Draken revises his goals to include keeping the newcomer he cherishes safe.

The latest Nightsiders romantic fantasy (see Nightmaster and Daysider) is an action-packed thriller that nicely blends desire with peril. Though the overarching drums of war fails to move forward much, readers will relish this taut twisting storyline as the lead couple has some complex decisions to make in which each choice seems overwhelmingly lethal to them.

Harriet Klausner

Running With Wolves-Cynthia Cooke

March 13, 2014

Running With Wolves
Cynthia Cooke
Harlequin Nocturne, Mar 4 2014, $5.75
ISBN: 9780373885923

In the Cascades, the Colony’s wolf shifters’ leader Malcom assigns loyal member Jason Stratton to find and escort to the pack a former chief’s daughter to bring peace and consolidate the alpha’s power as his mate. Jason locates a confused Shay Mallory, who has recently dealt with weird happenings and still misses her late father who protected her while warning her to beware of strangers.

Feeling treasonous due to his attraction to Shay, Jason explains to her she must mate with a shifter; but she rejects the notion of being bound with a man she never met. As he escorts Shay and her companion Buddy to the enclave, enemies attack them several times. To save her life, Jason mates with Shay so she can shift though he expects once he gets her to safety, Malcom will kill him.

The keys to why Running With Wolves is a strong romantic fantasy are Cynthia Cooke’s supernatural world populated with the paranormal seems genuine and the hero is a caring passionate person preferring to make love not war. Action-packed, readers will enjoy joining the protagonists on their dangerous road show to love.

Harriet Klausner

The Vampire Hunter-Michele Hauf

January 23, 2014

The Vampire Hunter
Michele Hauf
Harlequin Nocturne, Jan 7 2014, $5.75
ISBN 9780373885879

In Paris, Knight of the Stake Kaz Rothstein searches for the distributer behind the devastation that has turned the streets of the City of Lights into a dark hellhole. After Kaz rescues a young female from a vampire pack; she thanks her hero with a kiss that shakes him to his bone marrow and has her heart pounding. To his astonishment, Zac is attracted to the beguiling witch Zoe Guillbeaux.

Meanwhile the witch has been working on an elixir to cure an undead friend addicted to faery ichor, but remains ignorant that her medicine has become the rage of the Paris underground. As each learns the whole truth; she fears her beloved’s reaction to her.

This In The Company of Vampires romantic urban fantasy is an entertaining Paris thriller. The lead couple is a terrific pairing of two individuals who are in love but doubts linger in each’s minds from their respective history with the paranormal. Although the fascinating drug investigation takes too long to come together, readers will appreciate the changing relationship between the hunter and the witch (from The Good to The Bad to The Ugly, and hopefully back to the Good).

Harriet Klausner

The Magic Between Us-Tammy Falkner

January 22, 2014

The Magic Between Us
Tammy Falkner
Sourcebooks, Jan 7 2014, $6.99
ISBN 9781402268182

His parents live on the mortal plane while hybrid Marcus Thorne resides in the land of the fae without them ever in his life. He loves Cecelia Hewitt and expects to one day marry her. However, family duty calls for him to cross the plane to become an English aristocrat; leaving behind his beloved Cecelia.

His kin welcomes Marcus but also tells him they want him happy which includes marrying Cecelia. However, she has family demands so she says no to his proposal. Resolute Marcus vows to learn what prevents his beloved from becoming his wife and fixing this roadblock to their happiness.

The latest “Magic” regency romantic fantasy (see A Lady And Her Magic and The Magic Of “I Do”) is an engaging paranormal historical starring two likeable leads struggling with obligations that keep them from saying yes at the same time to The Magic Between Them. Although a late redemption feels improbable and tsuris resolved too quickly and easily, fans will enjoy this cross-plane romance.

Harriet Klausner

Lord of the Hunt-Shona Husk

January 12, 2014

Lord of the Hunt
Shona Husk
Sourcebooks, Jan 7 2014, $6.99
ISBN 9781402280191

Taryn is frightened but intrepid as she breathes the air of her ancestors for the first time when she crosses from the mortal plane to Annwyn, home of the Fae. She accepted an invitation by the former Outcast Prince, who though unready will soon be the ruler with Winter coming for the first time in decades. Her mission is personal as she prays the present King will pardon her exiled father so that he and her beloved mother can come home before the throne change leaves those banished from the realm dead.

The Lord of the Hunt Verden shocks himself when he realizes he is attracted to the naive Fae outsider. He mentors Taryn on life at court, but fears those with ruthless ambition will use his beloved as a power grabbing expendable pawn during the royal change when illusions die and planes expire.

The latest Court of Annwyn romantic fantasy is a superb thriller that works on the macro level with the great change coming to the land of the Fae and on the micro level with the growing love between the daughter of exiles and the Lord of the Hunt. Readers will appreciate this strong entry as the destructive force of Winter leaves Annwyn and the mortal world in peril.

Harriet Klausner

A Promise For The Baby-Jennifer Lohmann

January 12, 2014

A Promise For The Baby
Jennifer Lohmann
Harlequin SuperRomance, Jan 7 2014, $6.75
ISBN 9780373608225

In Vegas, dealer Vivian Yip and attorney Karl Milek meet and spend a drunken night together. In the hangover morning, each is shocked that they married, but agree to a divorce. She goes back to the casino while he returns to Chicago after accusing her of manipulating him for money.

Over the next few weeks, Vivian loses her job and her savings due to her father’s machinations, and her figure due to that one night stand. She shows up in Chicago pregnant accompanied by her parrot. Karl likes the concept of an offspring so he gives her a place to stay until he learns why Vivian lost her job; his original fears that morning after lead him to distrust the mother of his unborn.

A Promise for the Baby is a wonderful family drama starring a down on her luck protagonist, an unlikable lead male and a strong support cast made up of mostly of her father and aunt, his kin and their friends. Readers will enjoy Jennifer Lohmann’s amusing tale of what happens in Vegas stays in Chicago with Vivian knowing Karl loves her due to how he ultimately treats her felonious father.

Harriet Klausner

Love Your Entity-Cat Devon

January 4, 2014

Love Your Entity
Cat Devon
St. Martin’s, Dec 31 2013, $7.99
ISBN 978-0312547813

In Chicago, ghost whisperer author Sierra Brennan opens the door to her historical townhouse for the first time only to be greeted by a naked sexy man and a female ghost. She accuses them of trespassing while the nude hunk asks who else she is talking to. Sierra demands they leave, but each ignores her. To keep ownership of her new inheritance Sierra must reside there for thirty days so she reluctantly accepts her new roommates as part of the residence for now.

Vampire Ronan McCoy claims the house belongs to him too as he explains he was just freed from a century of indenture servicing master vampire Baron Vox. There is a catch to his liberation; as to save his sister’s soul Ronan must locate and deliver a missing key to his former master. Ruby the ghost explains her link to the house occurred when she was murdered there. She warns Sierra to be careful of the other entity residing there as raging Hal, once a violent part of the Capone mob, seeks vengeance. Even before he realizes he loves her, Ronan knows he must keep Sierra safe from dangerous Hal.

The third amusing Entity urban fantasy (see Sleeping With The Entity and The Entity Within) is a delightful lighthearted vampire romance. Sub-genre fans will appreciate Cat Devon’s latest Entity entry as the whisperer, the vampires and the ghosts bring freshness to the Windy City.

Harriet Klausner

Heart of Stone-Christine Warren

January 3, 2014

Heart of Stone
Christine Warren
St. Martin’s, Dec 31 2013, $7.99
ISBN 9781250012654

After the quarterly Vancouver Art and History Museum fundraising gala at the Georgia House, docent Ella Harrow begins to leave alone when very important third generation financial supporter Patrick Stanley assaults her. Using her psychic power, she stops the angry creep until her boss Beatrice Boucher arrives preventing him from further attacks. As Ella leaves by herself, she lectures the “Sir Arthur Conan Doyle” gargoyle statue that she loves to look at for not repelling evil; as is his mission. The statue comes to life confusing Kees of the Guild of Wardens that an untrained human awakened him from his ages-long hibernation and stunning Ella who wonders when she will awaken from her sleep.

Kees informs Ella that his adversaries, the lethal seven demons of the Dark, must be returning. He further explains this means he needs his team so the bewildered museum employee and the gargoyle search for them. During their quest with their malevolent enemies in pursuit, each feels a deep attraction growing in intensity; which makes no sense to unemotional Kees, but very understandable to romantic Ella who loved him when he had a Heart of Stone.

Christine Warren starts her new paranormal romance series with a rousing first act that sets the boundaries of this engaging urban fantasy. Kees is a terrific hero who took pride in his totally logical thought-process (much more than Mr. Spock), but this arising finds him in alien territory fighting his unwanted yet wanted feelings of desire. He is the catalyst that changes Ella from an anti-social loner who relishes artifacts not people into a caring courageous warrior. Heart of Stone is a strong opening tale.

Harriet Klausner

Deadshifted

January 1, 2014

Deadshifted
Cassie Alexander
St. Martin’s, Dec 31 2013, $7.99
ISBN 9781250037947

Lovers Dr. Asher and Nurse Edie leave blizzard wracked County Hospital where they work at the secret Y4 ward for paranormal patients on the Maraschino cruise ship bound for Hawaii. However, besides seasickness in which she rejects meds due to her pregnancy, Edie feels overwhelmed standing on the sixth deck looking out on the vast ocean while Asher wants to spend the two weeks naked in their cabin.

However, soon after departure, Asher recognizes evil from his less savory days. He explains to Edie that the malevolence hired him to steal synthetic blood, which he did for a fee that he cashed but turned the rogue in to the Consortium. Edie says even bad guys need R&R. Soon afterward, people on board become ill with some dying and some going insane. Asher believes his former employer is behind the disaster while Edie concludes patient zero is an Old Testament monster.

The fourth Edie Spence paranormal is an exciting thriller that starts slow but accelerates into hyperspeed once the pandemic erupts. The change of venue from the Y4 ward to the ship brings freshness but also leaves behind in the States the strange patients and odd staff who made the previous entries (see Moonshifted, Nightshifted and Shapeshifted) unique. Still the exciting storyline engages the readers as series fans will appreciate this taut tale and its shocking finish.

Harriet Klausner