Dead in Her Tracks by Kendra Elliot

Rating: 4 stars

Series: Rogue Winter #2

This is the second and final book in the Rogue Winter series. Stevie and Zane investigated another murder in Solitude. They discovered a link between this murder and the one Carly and Seth investigated in Tracks of Her Tears. Solving the murder would prove to harder than they thought when things go awry with their primary suspect.

The mystery tied up the loose ends from the prior book. The killer wasn’t obvious, but I was very satisfied with who it was. I liked this one more than Tracks of Her Tears, and it was probably because of Stevie and Zane. I find them to be more relatable than Carly and Seth. Serving justice is important to them, but they also know the value of having a personal life. Stevie and Zane fans will be happy with the development of their relationship.

I received this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Tracks of Her Tears by Melinda Leigh

Rating: 3 stars

Series: Rogue Winter #1

Although this is technically the first book of a new series, it would be best to read the Rogue River series first since both series have the same characters. This can be read without reading the other series, but I like to know the background of characters when possible. Character wise this is a continuation of the other series. The difference is that each series contains a new mystery.

This novella was from the perspectives of Carly and Seth. Someone was murdered in the town of Solitude, and Seth was investigating it. The woman murdered had a baby, so Carly was involved as a social worker. I enjoyed the mystery although it wasn’t too complex since this is a novella.

I would have liked this a bit more, but I find Carly and Seth to be dull. Their romance lacked a spark that truly made me believe in them as a couple. They are committed to making their relationship work. At the same time they both seemed highly work oriented. It was hard for me to relate to a couple who struggled between balancing their personal lives and work. Nonetheless this was a good continuation of the prior series.

I received this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Hanover House by Brenda Novak

Rating: 3 stars

Series: Hanover House Chronicles #0.5

Evelyn was tortured, raped, and left for dead when she was a teenager. She was emotionally scarred by this. Twenty years later at 36 years old years old she could not form meaningful relationships. The only way she knew how to function was to devote her life to studying psychopaths.

I would have liked this better if it didn’t have insta-lust. After spending decades avoiding relationships but also not having any genuine sexual interest, it struck me as slightly odd that she met Amarok and felt so drawn to him. She must have seen good looking men before. Why didn’t they have the same effect on her? I really did enjoy the budding relationship between Evelyn and Amarok, but would have liked it better if they got to know each other a little more before the lust was a strong factor.

Hanover House was a good prequel for the upcoming trilogy. Since this was an introduction to Evelyn’s story, it is likely the actual trilogy will focus slightly more on the psychopaths she studies, which could be very interesting. It’s a bit of a dark twist for romantic suspense novels.

I received this from netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

In the Land of Tea and Ravens by R.K. Ryals

Rating: 4 stars

In the Land of Tea and Ravens was beautiful. Lyric and Grayson were sad, broken characters. Neither of them were bad people but had tragic pasts that would haunt them for the rest of their lives. The story wasn’t depressing; it was about hope and acceptance although there was a pervasive feeling of melancholy throughout.

Grayson and Lyric were both outcasts. Many people did not like Grayson for what happened in his past, but it was his family that had the strongest resentment towards him. Lyric was accepted by her family because they knew her secrets, but the rest of society abhorred her. Rumors about Lyric’s family indicated that the women were crazy and managed to taint the men in their lives with their insanity.

No surprises were in store in regards to the romance. It was fairly predictable, but the story excelled in other areas. The realistic setting with a touch of fantasy enhanced the story because the fantasy elements were original. The plot was interesting because it emphasized how deeply people can be impacted by the actions of others. Truly it was the writing that made it stand out. It was eloquent and beautiful without being overly complex or hard to understand.

The Donor by Nikki Rae

Rating: 2.5 stars

Casey was a teenager in a rough situation. Her father was sick, and her family desperately needed money. On top of that she was getting nosebleeds and headaches, so to me it was fairly obvious what was wrong with her. Through an exclusive website she met Jonah and traveled to see him. So it was logical to assume romance ensues, right? Wrong. The romance between them was barely existent. It wasn’t really romance anyway. They were using each other to meet their own ends.

The subject matter was dark. It failed to convey the gravity of the situation on an emotional level. It fell flat. It was hard to feel anything for Casey or Jonah although they are both fighting to live in their own ways. More character development was desperately needed. There was a paranormal element, but it was minor to the degree that it did not require any world building at all. Basically this seemed like contemporary fiction. At the end of this, I felt nothing. No emotions were aroused whatsoever, and there should be strong emotions after reading a novella on this topic.

I received a copy of this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Walking on Her Grave by Melinda Leigh

Rating: 3 1/2 stars

Series: Rogue River Novella #4

I received a copy of this from netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

This was the fourth and final novella in the Rogue River series, and it was a satisfying conclusion. Carly and Seth were the main characters in this one. A fire in town revealed some clues about the recent crimes in the town. One of Carly’s clients who had a connection to the drugs went missing. Carly and Seth had to work on these cases together. This also gave them the opportunity to work on some of their relationship issues, so they were growing closer. Seth is somewhat of an alpha male, but especially in comparison the alphas in other stories, he’s at the weaker end of the spectrum of alphas. He wanted things to be his way and made that known, but he wasn’t highly demanding or controlling.  Carly was kind of hard to relate to in regards to her feelings for Seth. It made sense that she didn’t feel respected, but overall Seth is a good man. It felt like she was over dramatizing their problems. Their problems did need to be addressed, but she reacted too harshly IMO.

The mystery was enjoyable. The drug problems and murders from all four novellas were connected and wrapped up. I hadn’t figured out who was behind all of the drama in Solitude. The person behind it all was a suspect, but I wasn’t positively sure it was them until the end. I was happy that it wasn’t some random character that popped up out of the blue or had one brief interaction with the main characters in one of the other novellas. There were some people that I thought might have been in on it based on things that happened in the other novellas but as it turned out they weren’t.