{Book Review} Iced by Karen Marie Moning

Hmm, where to begin.  I think you all know I’m a big fan of Ms. Moning by now since I so often sing her praises, but I think she’s outdone herself this time.

Here are the deets of the book:

12444166The year is 1 AWC—After the Wall Crash. The Fae are free and hunting us. It’s a war zone out there, and no two days are alike. I’m Dani O’Malley, the chaos-filled streets of Dublin are my home, and there’s no place I’d rather be.

Dani “Mega” O’Malley plays by her own set of rules—and in a world overrun by Dark Fae, her biggest rule is: Do what it takes to survive. Possessing rare talents and the all-powerful Sword of Light, Dani is more than equipped for the task. In fact, she’s one of the rare humans who can defend themselves against the Unseelie. But now, amid the pandemonium, her greatest gifts have turned into serious liabilities.

Dani’s ex–best friend, MacKayla Lane, wants her dead, the terrifying Unseelie princes have put a price on her head, and Inspector Jayne, the head of the police force, is after her sword and will stop at nothing to get it. What’s more, people are being mysteriously frozen to death all over the city, encased on the spot in sub-zero, icy tableaux.

When Dublin’s most seductive nightclub gets blanketed in hoarfrost, Dani finds herself at the mercy of Ryodan, the club’s ruthless, immortal owner. He needs her quick wit and exceptional skill to figure out what’s freezing Fae and humans dead in their tracks—and Ryodan will do anything to ensure her compliance.

Dodging bullets, fangs, and fists, Dani must strike treacherous bargains and make desperate alliances to save her beloved Dublin—before everything and everyone in it gets iced.

~~~

When I picked this book up, I didn’t have high hopes since the main character, Dani, a sarcastic and highly talented Irish girl, is only fourteen.  Now, I have no issue with young adult stuff and there are lots of works out there I love in that genre, but I prefer adult stories, the darker and grittier the better.

Somehow, this story had all of the adult content I wanted while still being tame enough for a younger crowd.  By the time I’d made it to chapter three, I was already giddy about this book and its rainbow of fascinating characters.  Dani is definitely unique in talent and in voice.  A warrior, bold and confident to the point of endangering herself, but still has a heart of a scared young girl who wants to do the right thing.  She survived a cruel childhood and isn’t afraid to put herself in harm’s way to save her beloved Dublin.

Enter Ryodan, who was introduced a few books back, and the intrigue goes through the roof.  He’s … whatever Jericoh Barrons is.  Badass, immortal, grouchy, and sexy as freakin’ hell.  The best thing about him is that for a while I wasn’t sure whether to love or hate him, and I have no idea where the story’s going from here, only that I want to know … like … now.

So Dani “Mega” O’Malley ends up becoming an unwilling partner solving some strange happenings in Dublin, and on top of it, Christian-turned-Unseelie-Prince has taken a shine to her.  She’s running from Mac, who Dani’s convinced wants to kill her, and barely escaping whatever is turning her city into a freezer, all while being entertaining as hell.  Bravo on this one.  Another five stars for this one.  Heck, I’d give it six or seven if I could.

Pick it up.  Read it.  It won’t disappoint.

{Review} The Immortal Highlander

Wow.  The power of Karen Marie Moning’s writing always has me in awe every time I finish one of her books.  As soon as I start on page one, the characters crawl into my heart and eat away at me until I’ve learned their entire story from start to finish. 

The last of the Highlander series, The Immortal Highlander, was no exception.  In fact, I think Adam Black’s story is my favorite of the whole lot.  I finished it two days ago and I’m still thinking about it.

Here are the deets courtesy of Goodreads:

Back of the Book:

Enter a world of timeless seduction, of ancient intrigue and modern-day passion. Enter the dazzling world of Karen Marie Moning, whose acclaimed Highlander novels have captivated readers, spanning the continents and the centuries, bringing ancient Scotland vividly to life. In a new novel brimming with time-travel adventure and sensual heat, the nationally bestselling author of The Dark Highlander delivers a love story that will hold you in thrall—and a hero you will most certainly never forget.

BEWARE: lethally seductive alpha male of immense strength and dark eroticism, do not look at him. Do not touch him. Do not be tempted. Do not be seduced.

With his long, black hair and dark, mesmerizing eyes, Adam Black is Trouble with a capital T. Immortal, arrogant, and intensely sensual, he is the consummate seducer, free to roam across time and continents in pursuit of his insatiable desires. That is, until a curse strips him of his immortality and makes him invisible, a cruel fate for so irresistible a man. With his very life at stake, Adam’s only hope for survival is in the hands of the one woman who can actually see him.

Enter law student Gabrielle O’Callaghan, who is cursed with the ability to see both worlds: Mortal and Faery. From the moment she lays eyes on this stunning male, Gabby is certain of one thing: He could be her undoing. Thus begins a long, dangerous seduction. Because despite his powerful strength and unquenchable hungers, Adam refuses to take a woman by force. Instead, he will tease his way into Gabby’s bed and make her want him just as he wants her.

Now, no matter how hard Gabby tries to avoid him, Adam is everywhere, invisible to all but her—perched atop her office cubicle in too-tight jeans, whispering softly from behind the stacks of the law library, stealing her breath away with his knowing smile…all the while tempting her with the promise of unimaginable pleasure in his arms. But soon danger will intrude on this sensual dance. For as Adam’s quest to regain his immortality plunges them into a world of timeless magic and the deadly politics of the Faery queen’s court, the price of surrender could be their very lives. Unless they can thwart the conspiracy that threatens both mortal and Faery realms…and give them a shot at a destiny few mortals ever know: glorious, wondrous, endless love.

Cover

The cover is appropriate and tasteful, with bold colors.  It’s nothing out of the ordinary, but it’s still somehow eye-catching and very fitting to Adam Black’s story.

Review

Adam Black.  I could leave the review right there and say all I needed to, only add a little whispery sigh when you say his name, and there you have it.  The delicious fae blacksmith has appeared through out the series as somewhat of an antagonist, a wild card, and damn sexy in every last one with his shining black locks and body to die for.  He’s arrogant and full of himself, so sure of his effect on women and sexual prowess. 

KMM really ripped him a new one in this book, starting right off with a bang right after the last book ended.  He’s not the same, having suffered a punishment by the fae queen for defying her yet again.  He meets his match in Gabrielle, a Sidhe-Seer who is the only one anywhere who can see him, and the only one who doesn’t want to.

The way the relationship progresses from two stubborn heads butting together, to sexual tension almost unbearable to take is so natural and believable, I was nearly shouting at the characters to shut it and get naked already!  There were sweet moments, too, and misunderstandings between them that made the story all the more interesting.  There are some seriously hot scenes in this one, even hotter than in book one with Hawk.

Loved.  Every.  Page.

Five stars, as usual.  I’m not a sappy romance kind of person, yet this one really lit my fire.  Hard won relationship, hot alpha male who is far from perfect, and a heroine who I could identify with put this book in a class above the rest.

{Book Review} Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning #tuesdayturns

I don’t often find an author that really impresses me.  When I picked up the first book of the Fever series by Karen Marie Moning, I have to say, I thought it was going to be another disappointment.  My, but was I wrong.

I give the series a full five stars, and would give a few more if there were any.

If you’d like to read the blurbs from these books, here’s a link to KMM’s goodreads page, where you can find anything you want to know:  Click here.

Cover:  The cover is just okay for me.  Nothing really special about, but that’s neither here nor there.

The Content is where it’s at:

As I mentioned, I read book one of this series over a span of a few days.  Within a few chapters, I put it down again for one reason:  I hated the writing style.

What, you ask?  How could that be when she’s a famous, successful, published author?  I didn’t like that the author told so much.  She’d tell me what was about to happen, jump ahead a few scenes, then tell what had happened during the action-packed bits we’d skipped over instead of showing us those scenes.  I wanted those scenes.  I needed those scenes.

Having said that, I kept picking the book back up.  Suddenly I was devouring the second.  Then the third, and didn’t stop until I reached the end of this the series, book 5, Shadowfever.  What the hell?  What was it about the books, with a writing style I hated, that kept drawing me back in like the Sinsaur Duhb itself?

Just the story?  The characters?  The incredible heat between Mac and Jericoh?  The intrigue of what he was, what she was?  The sex-by-death fae?  The silvers?  The mystery of the king and his concubine?  The depth of thought that came out of the dialogue and interactions?  The answer is, all of the above.  And how.  I’ve never been so enthralled with the complexity of the story and characters, the building of layers as the books went along and we learned a little more about everyone.

I loved Jericoh, a total wild card.  Hot.  Mysterious.  He had me guessing until the very end as to his motives and how he felt about Mac.  She, too, is a mystery up until the end and it’s rare I haven’t figured out the plot before it plays out.  This is a clever series that taught me a lot about layers of writing, some surface, some middle, and some so deep I had to stop and consider the meaning before going on.

All in all, this series is imaginative and thought provoking.  I still missed my scenes, but it wasn’t enough to hinder my enjoyment.  This is a series I’ll probably read multiple times and find more hidden gems each time through.  I’d recommend it for lovers of big girl urban fantasy and paranormal romance novels.

Have you read it?  What did you think?