Dragons

Dragon Fire Review + Giveaway

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Dragon Fire

(Book #1)

Dina von Lowenkraft


Genre: YA Fantasy
Release Date: August 5, 2013 (ebook)
December 15, 2013 (paperback)
Publisher: Twilight Times Books

ISBN: 978-1606192917

ASIN: B00ECNEZ6G

Pages: 353

Goodreads Rating:  4.29
My Rating: 4.5

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Book Description:

Some choices are hard to live with.

But some choices will kill you.

When seventeen-year-old Anna first meets Rakan in her hometown north of the Arctic Circle, she is attracted to the pulsing energy that surrounds him. Unaware that he is a shapeshifting dragon, Anna is drawn into a murderous cycle of revenge that pits Rakan and his clan against her best friend June.

Torn between his forbidden relationship with Anna, punishable by death, and restoring his family’s honor by killing June, Rakan must decide what is right. And what is worth living – or dying – for.

My Take On The Book:

Wow! I really enjoyed this book, more than I expected to. To be honest, I was a bit lost at first while reading this, there is a lot of back story and I got lost in translation. I felt like there was more to the story and we as readers might have just been plopped into it. The writing style was also different, between the abrupt POV changes and the lingo you can find yourself confused if you don’t slow down.

But fear not, once you get into the swing of things, it’s easy to follow and all is answered with time and patience. And this intriguing book is worth the wait! It’s a beautiful story of love, loss and betrayal.

The Great (Pros):

 

  • Mythology. I loved the lavish descriptions, the dragon mythology and the different types of dragons. They were woven together so perfectly and serve to place you into the beautiful a mysterious world. I also happened to love the non-dragon beings (I can’t delve into that, it would totally ruin the mystery)
  • Romance. While it was there and helped to drive the story onwards, it was written in a way that wasn’t overbearing or overindulgent. I loved Anna and Rakan/Pemba! They were well matched I also loved the romance between Dvara/Dawa and T’eng Sten/Torsten there was a lot of unbridled passion there.
  • Mystery and Intrigue. One of the reasons I kept turning the page was my need to know what the hell was going on.
  •  The Cover.It’s just so darn beautiful. It’s exactly how I pictured Anna as I read this.
  •  The Ending.While it falls a bit on the predictable side, it was done well and it answers most of your questions.

 

The Not So Great (Cons):

 

  • The Ending. Lol I know I have this as a pro but it is also a con. While many answers were given at the end of this story…You get a whole new lot of questions and a few lingering ones. This book also ends in an open ended fashion. It’s set up with the intent of a sequel BUT nowhere does it say this is a series, a duology or a trilogy.
  •  Ingrid. Anna’s mom. She just rubbed me the wrong way. I hated reading about her, and more to the point I hate writing about her. I didn’t like how she treated Anna or how she revered her slimy boyfriend Ulf. She doesn’t come off as a loving mother, only an insecure woman who nags and whines. I was literally left feeling as if Anna was some sort of nuisance to her.
  • Descriptions. While most of the story is beautifully and intricately woven, there are a couple of moments where that all gets muddled up.

4.5 Quills

All in all this story was beautiful and sensual and very intriguing. Chapter by chapter you’re sucked into this magical world of dragons and mythical creatures. It’s a lovely and enthralling book that I would recommend to anyone who enjoys paranormal romance, fantasy and dragons.

 

About The Author  

 

Born in the US, Dina von Lowenkraft has lived on 4 continents, worked as a graphic artist for television and as a consultant in the fashion industry. Somewhere between New York and Paris she picked up an MBA and a black belt. Dina is currently the Regional Advisor for SCBWI Belgium, where she lives with her husband, two children and three horses.

http://www.dinavonlowenkraft.com/

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Enter The Giveaway Here

10 E-book Copies (INT)

2 Print Copies (US Only)

 

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“I received a free copy of the book from the author for my honest opinion.”

Open Flame by Lacy Danes Review & Giveaway!!!

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OpenFlame72lgOpen Flame

Dragons Fate Book 2

Lacy Danes

Genre: Paranormal Romance

 

Date of Publication: September 24, 2013

Publisher: Samhain Publishing

ISBN: 978-1-61921-746-1

ASIN: B00CZ8MCHO

Number of pages: 118

Word Count: 32K

My Rating: 3.5 to 4

Samhain Publishing | Kindle | Kobo | Nook

 

Book Description:

Between hate and lust lies heaven, hell… and smoldering love.

Like his brothers, Madoc is a dragon born by blood magic. Unlike them, he has only once bitten a human in a near-hopeless quest to find his eternal mate. Watching that woman die nearly destroyed him.

Now he works to invent a watch that will rewind time. When he attends the Spectacle of Time in Paris, though, he finds a woman who shakes the foundation of his world and crumbles his ferocious control.

Ever since the black-haired man with the red crescent on his cheek ruined her family, Fina has hated him. When she runs into him in Paris, she is determined to show him just how much. Instead, overwhelmed by the desire to both kill him and bed him, her body betrays her and she melts in his arms.

Sparks fly, and—when his teeth sink into her skin—she ignites. But she can’t run far and fast enough to avoid the burning truth. She is now part of Madoc’s dangerous world, body, soul, and fire.

Warning: This novel contains explicit sex, time-shifting, distance-hopping, a super-hot dragon, and a woman who can take the heat.

Short Excerpt: http://www.lacydanes.com/books/open-flame/#read-an-excerpt

My take on the book:

 

Ok Ok, I have to admit I was conflicted about my review of this book.

On the one hand, I loved it. I loved the concept of Dragons, the fact that each dragon wields a particular magic of their own and the integration of vampires. But on the other hand, I was a tad disappointed with how the story unfolded. Book one of this series, Waterfall was permanently added to my fave book list not long ago when I read it, it was chalk full of steam and so much je ne sais quoi which I felt was missing a bit from Open Flame. It was a good read, a really good read. I loved the characters as much if not more than book one but and this is a really big but, I felt like this story and its characters might have done better if featured in a longer novella or full length novel. Now maybe I’m being partial due to my disappointment in the book’s ending (not the way it ended but well its ending read the pros and cons for a better explanation) but I’ll stand by my observation. I didn’t feel there was enough of a story, everything felt rushed this time around and that was my confliction while reading this story.

Once again Lacy Danes was a genius with words and imagery so that was a major plus in my opinion so the story wasn’t lacking there. The world was vivid, almost tangible. Ms. Danes has a unique way with setting a scene and I believe wholeheartedly that this book captured that.  I’d probably make more sense if I broke it all down for you guys.

The Great (Pros):

 

  • The Characters. I loved Madoc and I really liked Fina. She was just the right of spunk and woman. She made me mad and made me laugh at her utterly ridiculous monologue (this is of course meant it the best sense. Ms. Dane’s writing was superb so I’m not calling that ridiculous in the least.) She was strong which seemed like a great fit for Madoc. Madoc was just the perfect mesh of sexy dragon goodness and lost puppy.
  • The Prologue. This part of the story was simply and to the point. A perfect intro to the story and a great way to allow readers the opportunity to jump into the series even without reading book one. It allows the book to stand on its own giving the reader the option of picking up the first book if they so choose. I recommend reading both though 😉
  • Hudson. He deserves to stand on his own and not fall into the category of characters lol. He was so conflicted and his story tugs at your heart strings but his ability to put that behind him and still be such a great friend to Madoc makes you giddy and swoon. He truly is a great friend to Madoc and in turn Fina, not to mention he is pretty funny in his witty remarks.
  • The Magic. The magic of this world, the creation of Lacy Dane’s brilliant mind, has to be one of my favorite aspects of this story. She crafted the world ‘magically’ and it shows in the way she penned it.
  • Lacy Dane’s Writing Style. It makes you breathless. As I stated before the characters were well loved and amazingly constructed. The world, The Spectacle of Time, The distance hoping just leaves you yearning to read more.
  • Carmen. She was just so well written. While she doesn’t appear in the book much, she kinda has a knack for stealing the spotlight when she entered on the page. I can’t delve to seep into this, for fear that I would give away some of the story.
  • The Epilogue. It literally leaves you hungry for more. It has so many redeeming qualities. You have a slight moment of fear but mainly it ends the book on a relatively happy note and you with a smile on your face.
  • Zir. I don’t know why but I just love that word. It’s different, weird even, but a perfect fit for a group of males who are indeed Dragons. Am I the only one wondering how she came up with that?

The not so great (Cons):

 

  • The word elemental. I know this might sound silly but I have this pet peeve about repetition. The word in my opinion was used way too much in the first chapter. It was elemental this and elemental that and I couldn’t stop the sigh of frustration that escaped me while reading it. Then it completely disappeared and I calmed only for it to return again and frustrate me once more.
  • Ilmir. He’s one of the brothers, his element air and I wanted to like him, I really did but I couldn’t. At least not till the epilogue. I couldn’t stomach his brash attitude or the way he was with Madoc. He was so cold and demeaning. It just irked me to no end.
  • The length. As I stated before, I felt this story would have done more with a little more meat. I felt like it was rushed. Not enough action. There were two baddies for Fina/Madoc to deal with other than the obvious resistance from Fina described in the book summary and neither of them were to my liking. I felt like one was rushed through and the other was added as an afterthought and dealt with poorly by the characters. This was probably my biggest deciding factor for my rating

3.5

3.5/4 Stars/Quills

 

All in all, I would recommend this book for many readers especially those who like books set in the past, those who love romance and those who love supernatural books. If you read ‘Destiny Kills’ or ‘Mercy Burns’ by Keri Arthur and loved it then this is definitely the book for you.

About the Author:

Lacy Danes

Lacy Danes made a New Year’s resolution to write a hot, historical romance. A year and a half later, she achieved her goal. She lives in Portland OR, where besides writing she enjoys horseback riding, gardening and savoring a great martini while watching the world go by.

Visit Lacy online:

 

LacyDanes.com

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Daughter of the Dragon Princess Release Day Blitz Review, Excerpt and Giveaway!!!

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CaptureDaughter of the
Dragon Princess
Nina Croft

Genre: Paranormal Romance
Release Date: October 7, 2013

ISBN: 9781301417209

Pages: 240

Word Count: 59,640

My Rating: 4.5/5

Book Description:

 

Found abandoned as a baby and brought up in a children’s home, Lily Palmer has no clue that she is the last of the Dragon Princesses and destined to be mated to a king. But when she wakes up one night to find her apartment invaded by a stunningly gorgeous, but totally deluded madman, she can no longer ignore the dreams which have haunted her life.

Exiled on Earth, and trapped in human form, the dragons have waited two thousand years for the only person who can open the portal between their world and this one. Now they have found her and Malachite Smith has one job—to deliver Lily to his King. According to dragon law, only the King and the Dragon Princess together can open the portal and take them home.

But neither Mal nor Lily are prepared for the overwhelming attraction which flares between them. Or for his reluctance to hand her over to a king he despises. Can they stand as one and challenge the old ways, even if it means destroying his people forever?

My take on the book:

This book was in one simple word, riveting. I loved it from page one, an almost perfect read. The title was a bit long and I found myself tripping over it but that w.e. no skin off my teeth lol. As the title suggests this book is about Lily Palmer, the last daughter of the dragon princess and how her she is thrust out of her seemingly normal life and into an age old conflict, which involves her more than she could have ever imagined. This story is literally dripping with umph. And that is literally the only word I could think of to describe it. It’s sensual and sexy and downright action packed.

The Great (Pros):

 

  • The Characters. Each character was well developed and perfectly outlined in this story. The author gave us the perfect combo of information and story progression.
  • Lily Palmer. What’s not to love about this girl? She’s kick butt and fallible. She tries, she fights and she’s loyal. A perfect combo for a heroine. She isn’t someone you’d expect to win a fight and she most likely won’t. She’s a damsel in distress but she’s snark your ass off.
  • The Dragon mythology.  I loved the story behind these dragons. Their homeland, their faults, their triumphs. I loved it all and how every aspect of it intertwines into the storyline. Every action and decision leads to a consequence whether it be good or bad but the author doesn’t balk at the possibilities and just keeps on through, which makes this story not good but great.
  • The Scenery. It wasn’t something Ms. Croft spent too much time on. In a few perfectly strung together words she depicted the surroundings and moved on. I love it when an author can paint a picture for you without having to constantly repeat the same words.
  • The Tattoos. Something this simple, also happens to be one of the elements in this book that stands out most to me. It falls slightly under my con predictability because its one of the reasons I knew what would happen and the author basically said the outcome if not in so many words but regardless I love the detail put into these marks/tattoos. Keep in mind they aren’t really tattoos and more like birthmarks.

 

The not so great (Cons):

 

  • Speed. Really the one of the only things, I didn’t like about this book. I found myself, frustrated with a couple of scenes because they just seem to rushed and overly constructed. I’m not sure exactly how to explain it except that I felt like some of the more important scenes were a tad less than what they should have been. When it came to the steamy scenes between Mal and Lily, Nina Croft was spot on if not dwelling too much on what had already been established but in some of the more action packed scenes, she was lacking. I’ve come to expect a bit more from a book in the action department so this was a letdown for me in my opinion; this was such a well written story and well developed story line.
  • Predictability. Unfortunately, this book also suffered from this problem. Maybe I’m psychic or maybe the author gave too much detail and a lot of the major twists and plot points where predictable. I found myself sagging with disappointment when certain events came to pass, I just knew and I was unable to push it to the back of my mind that they would happen.

4.5

4.5 Stars/Quills

I would wholeheartedly recommend this book; it was such a great read. Definitely for adults as it has quite a few of the more risqué scenes but a great read that will great you just as invested in the outcome as the characters are. Nina Croft definitely created a world where the characters are people you can connect with. You get the action you would expect from a group of mythological beings such as dragons and you get the romance you’ve come to expect for the adult genre. Make sure you read the excerpt below to get your first glimpse into Daughter of the Dragon Princess

 

Excerpt:

The hallway was dark, and she reached out her cuffed hands for guidance and encountered his hard body, her palms resting against him.

“Shit,” he muttered, then turned and backed her against the wall. She could just make out his form towering over her, as his head lowered and his lips slanted across hers. Her mind went numb, her body took over, and she didn’t resist as he plunged his tongue into her mouth. The kiss was hard and held an edge of anger barely contained. It didn’t matter. He tasted like her dreams, of heat and spice. Her tongue thrust back against his as a pulse started its incessant throb between her thighs. She stood unmoving as he deepened the kiss, pressing his long, hard body into hers so she was plastered against the length of him. Hunger ignited low in her belly, and she groaned against his lips while her hips shifted restlessly against him trying to get some relief from the craving building inside her.

One hand slid beneath her top to cup her breast, his palm rubbing over the peak, and pleasure shot from her nipple to her groin. Her head fell back, and she raised one leg, wrapping it around his hip so she could press her core against the hard length of his erection. Desire was building like a heaviness inside her, swelling…

A bolt of lightning lit up the room, briefly illuminating the savage intensity of his expression. His mouth stilled, his fingers tightened on her breast, then the light flashed again and he jerked free of her and swore viciously.

A second later, his fist slammed into the wall at her side.

Her hands came up to drag him back to her. She was clumsy in the cuffs and her senses returned—what sort of woman kissed a man who’d cuffed her? A crazy one, that’s what sort.

She pressed her wrists against him, so the metal dug into her skin and the fog of desire cleared enough for her brain to function. She shoved him hard. He didn’t budge.

“Get off me, pervert!”

His brows drew together. “Pervert?”

“You know, the sort of man who likes to tie women up?”

He didn’t answer, just took a step back, and shoved his hands in his pockets. He breathed out deeply and the tension drained from his body.

“Why?” she asked.

He didn’t pretend not to understand. “It occurred to me that we may not get another chance. And I was…curious.”

She gritted her teeth. “Curious?” Her tone was filled with outrage.

“Just leave it.” Lightning flashed again and he frowned, then took her arm. “Come on, I don’t like this.”

“Like what?”

He didn’t answer, just led her along the hallway and through a door. In the dim light, she could make out a comfortable sitting room. Everything appeared so normal and she blinked in confusion.

Mal pushed her toward an armchair. “Sit.”

“Yes, sir,” she muttered and sat. She didn’t understand him. Why would he kiss her like that, as though he cared?

He seemed about to say something but instead moved away to peer out of the window. She followed him with her eyes as he came back and stood over her again, rubbing a hand across his face.

“Lily…” he said.

She searched his expression, and he shifted under her gaze, not meeting her eyes. “What?”

“This man you are to meet tonight…”

“The one you’re handing me over to like an unwanted parcel?”

“Jesus,” he almost snarled the word. “Just don’t get him angry. Do as you’re told, and you’ll be all right.”

Was he actually afraid for her? “You’re frightening me,” she said slowly. “Mal”—for the first time she used his name—“am I going to die tonight?”

She held her breath waiting for the answer.

“No, he won’t kill you.” He paused. “But there are worse things than death.”

Icy cold washed through her. “Now, you’re really scaring me.”


Meet The Author:

nina croft

Nina Croft grew up in the north of England. After training as an accountant, she spent four years working as a volunteer in Zambia which left her with a love of the sun and a dislike of 9-5 work. She then spent a number of years mixing travel (whenever possible) with work (whenever necessary) but has now settled down to a life of writing and picking almonds on a remote farm in the mountains of southern Spain.

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