Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Dead To Me by Anton Strout

Go me, I read another book that wasn't paranormal romance! I'm really glad I did, too. This book was awesome, and I would definitely recommend it. If you like the Harry Dresden books, you'd definitely like this one. It's serious and funny at the same time. There were a couple of lines that actually made me laugh out loud. I wish I'd written them down, because then I would share them.

Set in New York City, Simon Canderous is a psychometrist that works for the Department of Extraordinary Affairs(DEA). Each time he touches an object, he can see the object's past owners and what happened to them. He uses his powers not only for the DEA, but hunts down antiques and returns them to their previous owners...for a small fee, of course.

Simon is meeting with his mentor Connor in the DEA's front cafe when he spills his drink through a woman at another table. It turns out that the woman, Irene, is one of the recently living. Connor's power and thus responsibility, is to guide the recently living to the other side. Irene's spirit is being held on this side for some reason.

Due to underfunding and the number of other ghosts, ghouls, and zombies the DEA has to deal with, Irene ends up staying at Simon's place. The search for her identity and her murder leads to a group of cultists who have been legitimized. Simon ends up with not just a ghost to deal with, but also one of the cultists' employees who isn't as Evil as she should be to work for the forces of darkness.

Strout has a very recently published sequel to this one, and I can't wait to read it. This one's got it all--psychic powers, good vs. evil, humor, and even a teeny bit of romance thrown in there. Pick it up!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Knit One, Kill Two by Maggie Sefton

Wow! I read something other than paranormal romance for once! In addition to being an incurable bookworm, I am also a knitter and crocheter. That's what led to picking up this book.

The author didn't waste any time jumping straight into the story here. The murder has already happened, and Kelly Flynn has come to Denver to settle her aunt's estate. The police have investigated and tell her that a vagrant killed her aunt. Kelly is not convinced and does some of her own investigating. She discovers that her aunt has borrowed twenty thousand dollars from a loan shark. The knitting project that her aunt was working on is missing, as is the family's heirloom quilt that hung on the wall.

Along the way, Kelly learns to knit from her aunt's friends, despite having resisted all her aunt's attempts to teach her. She garners the ire of the patrons of the local golf course when her dog jumps the fence and steals golf balls. She also meets the handsome Steve and learns that she has a distant relative that she never knew. She uncovers secrets that her aunt kept for years, and finally uncovers the murderer.

I liked this book. I liked that knitting was such a feature in the book. It really fit with my experience in my knitting group, what knitters are like, and the bond that a knitting group forms. The ending was as abrupt as the beginning, but I can excuse that because I believe it's a first novel. It's also the beginning of a series. I'll be reading on in the series to find out what else happens to Kelly and her knitting friends.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Before I Wake by Kathryn Smith

If you like Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dream Hunter books, you will enjoy this one as well.

Dawn is a doctor specializing in sleep disorders. It's appropriate, because she's also a Nightmare. She is one of the sentinels set to guard the sleep of mortals. Dawn is special because her father is Morpheus, king of The Dreaming.

In her work at a sleep clinic, she meets Noah Clarke. Noah is special, too. He is a lucid dreamer, able to bend things in his dreams and change them to his benefit. Because of their abilities, the two attract the attention of Karatos, a Terror.

Together, Dawn and Noah fight off Karatos with the help of Antwoine who has been banned from The Dreaming, and Dawn's father Morpheus. There was a lot of action to pull you through the book. I don't think I will ever look at dreams the same way again.

The author included a lot of pop culture references in the novel, and I had a lot of fun with that. Dawn really seemed like someone that I would like to get to know, someone I would get along with. I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it, especially if you're a Sherrilyn Kenyon fan.

Night Rising by Chris Marie Green

If you've been reading my blog for any length of time, you know that I really do not like books that portray vampires as nice guys. This book totally satisfied me in that aspect. No good vampires so far.

The story begins with Dawn, a Hollywood stunt woman returning to LA because her father has disappeared. She is paired with Kiko, a little person, and Breisi, a Hispanic woman. Both work for Limpet and Associates. Kiko is telepathic and psychometric, able to read people by touch as well as reading people's thoughts, both with proximity and by touch. Breisi is prescient, with visions of the future. She's had visions that Dawn is necessary for their mission to be successful. They are led by the mysterious Voice, the owner of Limpet.

The trio sets off looking for Robby Pennybaker, a child star who died years ago of a drug overdose. He's been spotted in footage of a recently made movie, and his mother has hired the agency to locate him.

Dawn's first night out introduces her to the world of the Underground. They encounter red-eyed guard Vampires who are susceptible to holy water, crucifixes, and garlic. They also have nasty sharp spiked tails with which to kill you. There are also silver eyed vampires and vampires with multi-colored eyes.

If you're looking for romance, there's a little of that. This is not your typical paranormal romance, however. There's a ton of action, and I really enjoyed the book. I loved that it was set in Los Angeles, my old stamping grounds. I would definitely recommend this book if you feel like I do--that vampires are not warm and fuzzy!

Sunday, March 8, 2009


I've been on a bit of a hiatus, but there will be reviews upcoming very, very soon. I'm currently pursuing a full-time freelance writing career, and my reviews are a very small part of my work. If you are interested in reading anything else I have written or if you like my writing style and would like to use one of my pieces in publication, please let me know! I am a versatile writer and can writer for multiple audiences.

Stay posted for upcoming reviews! I promise there will be some genres other than paranormal romance, but there will be a healthy helping of those as well! My TBR pile is heaping with autobiography/memoirs, some poetry, and at least one mystery.