Souljacker by Yasmine Galenorn

51icwzrlk7l-_sx322_bo1204203200_Rating: 2.5 stars

Series: Lily Bound #1

Not bad but completely unmemorable. Lily was a succubus who entertained men for a living. A vicious vampire called the souljacker killed one of her clients at her house. This set off a chain of events. Lily’s rep was ruined and her business failed. The weres were after her because of the guy that died. The souljacker was after her and her friends, so she worked with a demon Archer to get some info.

I had a hard time connecting with the characters. I didn’t care about any of them. Their lives were in danger at times, but it didn’t really matter if they lived or died because it wouldn’t have been any great loss. All of them except for Nate were supernatural, but they all seemed so damn normal. Lily was supposed to be over 600 years old but seemed like she should have been in her 20’s. For someone who had lived so long she lacked the skills to read people and to defend herself. Archer the love interest and chaos demon was boring. Nate served no real purpose except to give Lily another friend. Dani was her other friend. Nothing stood out about her. The introduction of Lily’s ex was lame. It didn’t create a love triangle, but he was boring. He served a purpose, but I still wish he hadn’t been in the story at all.

The souljacker was crazy. All of the vampires were described as heartless killers, so the souljacker wasn’t as extreme as he was made out to be. The weres created drama. Since they were unreasonable assholes, I couldn’t get behind their cause, and therefore they were uninteresting. There wasn’t any build up with the romance. It was instalove. I wasn’t feeling it between them. I liked this well enough that I read it quickly, but it’s not likely I’ll read the next one.

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

Magic Binds by Ilona Andrews

17333174Rating: 5 stars

Series: Kate Daniels #9

So much happened, and it was completely unexpected! There wasn’t a dull moment. Lots of humor. Roman was the perfect wedding officiator/organizer. Why doesn’t he have his own series? I love that guy. Finally there was plenty of page time with Roland!!! He’s fascinating. I want to hate him but I can’t. Julie’s relationship with Roland was explored although I’m still not sure that bastard hasn’t corrupted her in some way no one is expecting. The reappearance of a certain character was great. I did not see that coming at all, but it was a very interesting twist.

Kate is one hell of a kick ass woman! She was on her own a lot. It was a good change to have her and Curran operate independently. People were there for her, but she made all of the important decisions by herself. It really felt like she was the guardian of Atlanta. Her magical skills were off the charts! Lots of introspection in this one since power was beginning to corrupt Kate while she tried to remain true to herself. I liked seeing her evil side emerge.

There were two things I didn’t like about the book. One is that Hugh wasn’t in it. It wasn’t a big deal, but he was mentioned a fair amount, which made his absence more notable. The second thing is the predictions from the witches. I’m not a fan of stories where events are dictated by a predestined fate. Kate’s future isn’t set in stone, but knowing something was likely to happen seemed to lead to the eventuality of those events. That was a minor annoyance. The rest of the book was so damn good that it didn’t matter.

Deadtown by Nancy Holzner

6591459Rating: 2.5 stars

Series: Deadtown #1

Deadtown is an area of Boston where paranormals live. That includes zombies, witches, werewolves, vampires, and Victory Vaughn, the lone shapeshifter. Politically there is a lot of strife regarding paranormals. Depending on the state, they have little to no rights, but they are fighting for them. Victory wasn’t involved in the political aspect of things; she was just a demon hunter/killer.

What I liked:
-Victory didn’t need anyone else to save her. She was completely capable of doing it on her own.
-Using zombies was different. They’re not common in UF.
-The hellion demon a.k.a. The Destroyer and it’s connection to Victory’s family.
-The demons invaded dreams. It was kind of weird but unique.

Unfortunately there was a lot I didn’t like. Some things were really predictable. I figured out instantly who it was that tried to kidnap Victory. Only one person was a viable suspect for being the one who brought the Destroyer to Boston. I was hoping I’d be surprised at the end, that there would be some kind of a twist, but it didn’t happen.

The worst thing about this book was the characters. It’s not a good sign when the characters I liked (and I use the word liked loosely here) the most were the Destroyer and Victory’s niece. Victory was a kick ass woman, but that was the only thing appealing about her. She didn’t have close ties to anybody. None of the people in her life treated her with any kind of respect, but she kept them around anyway, which didn’t make much sense. Being a shifter definitely had some benefits, but when she turned into an animal or whatever she lost her human ability of higher thought. The whole shifting thing didn’t seem like the coolest ability to have. Victory wasn’t smart. When some creeps tried to kidnap her and throw her in a van, the person she suspected was her kind of sort of boyfriend Kane. WTH was up with that? The dude was a jerk, but he wasn’t evil. And if something like that happens and the person you suspect is the guy you’re screwing, it’s time to end it because there are some serious trust issues. She was self absorbed. Granted she had a lot going on but several times she forgot or ignored her friends. In the end it made sense that these people treated her the way they did because she didn’t treat them any better.

Kane wasn’t really a boyfriend. It was more of a friends with benefits type of situation. They were both self absorbed and workaholics, so it worked for them. It was obvious deep down they didn’t get each other. At least neither of them had illusions that their relationship was more than it was, and it was refreshing. Shit like that happens IRL, but those type of relationships are rarely depicted in UF. The romance was a minor subplot, but it was a love triangle. Victory was seeing Kane but was interested in another guy. The guy Daniel was more appealing than Kane, but Victory didn’t have chemistry with either of them.

Tina the teenage twit was a zombie. Why even introduce zombies into a story when the only one with significant page time was obnoxious, annoying, and dumb as hell? Several things she did put Victory’s life and potentially other people’s in danger, and Tina didn’t give a shit. Nothing would give me more pleasure than her death, but I have the feeling she’ll be around for the long run. There were some other characters I didn’t like, but they’re not even worth mentioning. I wanted to like this book, but it was damn hard to when none of these characters were appealing. I haven’t entirely ruled out reading the next book, but I won’t be rushing out to do it anytime soon.

Magic Stars by Ilona Andrews

magic_stars_smRating: 5 stars

Series: Grey Wolf #1, Kate Daniels #8.5

I’m at a loss for words. It was too good to be coherent after reading it. Derek and Julie! Wow! This pulled on all the heart strings. Could two people be any more perfect for each other? I’ve always shipped Derek and Julie, but now I really really ship them extra hard.

Ilona Andrews are UF gods. I bow down to you and pledge my undying devotion because you can do no wrong. I loved this novella! It was 10 times better than most books. I usually hate short stories and novellas because they don’t feel completely fleshed out. But this was amazing! I cannot believe they packed so much awesomeness into one small story.

I don’t even know where to start with how much I loved Derek. He is definitely my new book boyfriend. He’s much darker than most of IA’s characters. I hadn’t realized how deeply troubled he is until getting this glimpse inside his head. I knew he was bothered by his physical scars but had no idea the emotional ones went so far back. No matter what was going on in his head, he was still completely devoted and loyal to the people he is close to. There is hope for him, and I think it comes in the form a 16 year old girl named Julie.

Julie kicked ass! I was seriously impressed with her fighting skills. She’s turned into a mini Kate. They even have the same sense of humor. She’s way more mature than I had ever expected. I like her a lot more after reading this. Her behavior in the recent Kate Daniels books has had me worried, but it makes more sense after she discussed some things with Derek.

Magic Stars is not some random novella. This is a must read for the Kate Daniels series. Some important stuff was in it about Roland and Hugh. I’m freaking thrilled this is the start of a new series! It didn’t end on a cliffhanger, but it definitely left me wanting more.

Magic Shifts by Ilona Andrews

Rating: 4 stars

Series: Kate Daniels #8

I love almost everything Ilona Andrews writes. They could probably write a book about Kate and Curran going grocery shopping, and I’d still love it. I admit Magic Shifts wasn’t one of my favorites in the series. It didn’t have some of the nail biting tension I’m used to.

It was a transitional book, but was still packed with humor and useful information. Kate knew how to function in the real world, but Curran did not. He didn’t exactly understand the intricacies of human interaction. Kate still had a lot to learn about her precarious position in Atlanta and how to deal with it.

I would have liked this more, but I really missed some of the side characters. Derek was around a fair amount but didn’t add much to the storyline either. Roland only had a brief appearance. He’s a fascinating character. I want more of him. A lot more. He’s still such an enigma. My biggest gripe was the complete lack of Hugh. I love Curran. I really do, but there is something special about Hugh. He and Kate are well suited in some ways. I know there is no hope of romance, but it’s fun to see them duke it out.

The mystery was okay. It served a purpose for setting up the next two books, but most of it didn’t tie in with the overarching storyline. It was just a random problem Kate was dealing with. I’ve also been in a dour mood lately. Maybe this will be more compelling when I get around to rereading it.

The epilogue was intriguing. There are definitely good things to come in the next two books.

Tainted Blood by M.L. Brennan

Rating: 5 stars

Series: Generation V #3

Someone was murdered. Since the usual member of Fort’s family who investigates these events was occupied with other things, Fort had to go out on his own and investigate. For assistance he enlisted the help of Suzume. Fort became more entrenched with the supernaturals than ever before and had some tough decisions to make.

The whole thing with Chivalry and his wives is creepy. He really loves them, which is sick and twisted in it’s own way. It’s interesting that vampires kill people from drinking from them even without draining them. I don’t think I’ve ever come across this concept in a novel. Normally vampire bites induce euphoria and have healing powers.

In most fantasy or UF novels, the main character usually is special. They’re stronger, better, more powerful, etc. No one in this series falls into that category. There are incredibly powerful and strong characters, but they all have their weaknesses. Fort is on the weaker side, but he manages to hold his own. I’ve gotten really sick of the special main character trope, so to find a series that completely avoids that is great.

Tainted Blood was the best book yet in the series! Fort has grown and is standing up for what he believes in even when it’s not popular opinion. The family dynamic has been changing as Fort is transitioning and his mother’s health is declining. Fort’s relationship with Suzume is slowly changing, which is fine by me. I prefer it when people really get to know each other before jumping into a relationship.