Archive for March, 2013

Alizel’s Song-Bill Pottle

March 31, 2013

Alizel’s Song
Bill Pottle
Ellechor Publishing House, Mar 3 2013, $16.99
http://www.ellechorpublishing.com
ISBN: 9781937844882

Alizel the lowest Unranked angel muses over how fifteen billion years after the event, man stated: “In the beginning God created the Heaven and the earth”; not relatively long after that, man called it the Big Bang though it was not big and there was no bang as there was no air. The mission-less angels, even the highest rank Seraphim Luciferel, was confused as to why He created another world besides Heaven. The official word from the Seraphim was to trust in the Father as all will soon be revealed.

Zebub the Virtue sadistically hurts Verin the Virtue in a duel until Cantos the desk keeper armorer, accompanied by a Principality and a Power, ends the match. An Irate Verin destroys Cantos and the Principality while Zebub does likewise to the Power. The vanished angels end in Containment; while their destroyers fly away free and witness Alizel cries for the first time not in joy. The first murder in Heaven is the genesis of a revolt. When the new realm includes an entity made in God’s image, Luciferel takes over leading the rebellion against the Father. Not long afterward (in heavenly time), those angels ridding themselves of God’s Energy forge a mission to destroy Man, who quickly abuses free will to commit sin.

Alizel’s Song is a deep “memoir” as Bill Pottle provides a superb retelling of Genesis and much more. Fast-paced, this profound biblical thriller grips the reader from the onset with all the angels, even those that remain loyal, in shock with what the Father has wrought. The unranked angel escorts the audience on a tour of Heaven while describing key events in those early days as Big Bang scientific theory converges with Creationism.

Harriet Klausner

With All My Soul-Rachel Vincent

March 31, 2013

With All My Soul
Rachel Vincent
Harlequin Teen, Mar 26 2013, $9.99
ISBN: 9780373210664

Avarice the hellion knows he has time on his side as he seeks Kaylee Cavanaugh by assaulting her loved ones. Kaylee struggles not to break but is under pressure because she knows she is the cause of what is happening to her friends, family and her high school. She considers giving up especially when her adversary abetted by his allies (Envy and Vanity) murders her BFF Emma.

Instead, Kaylee and Emma attend the latter’s funeral as the former found a body to host her friend’s soul. When Avarice attacks another of her loved ones, filled with out of control rage, Kaylee vows no more. Feeling locked in by her anger, she plans to take the war to the enemy even if it results in her final death as she expects will occur especially after encountering the last essence she wants to meet at this critical moment.

This is a terrific finish to the action-packed Soul Screamers third urban fantasy trilogy (see If I Die and Before I Wake); as the irate heroine decides with all her soul to go after her adversaries though she needs to let go of her current avenging attitude to calmly plan a counterattack. Although the storyline opens up a bit choppy, fans will enjoy the climax as Kaylee learns you can’t save everyone but will risk her existence to insure as many of her loved ones are safe.

Harriet Klausner

Wolf With Benefits-Shelly Laurenston

March 31, 2013

Wolf With Benefits
Shelly Laurenston
Kensington Brava, Mar 26 2013, $15.00
ISBN: 9780758265227

Leaving his extended pack family home in Smithtown, Tennessee, wolf shifter Ricky Lee Reed obtains a job at his cousin’s security company in New York. He is assigned to protect jackal-shifter Toni Jean-Louis Parker, a member of the Carnivores hockey team.

After dealing with siblings and other pain in the butt family members, neither is in the mood for a serious relationship, but both feel the intense attraction as they tour the country together while she plays hockey. Ergo they agree to no strings benefits. However, as they fall in love, her pack’s latest woes place Toni Jean and Ricky Lee on center ice.

The latest Pride romantic urban fantasy (see Big Bad Beast and Bear Meets Girl) is the usual fast-paced and jocular yet complex storyline that grips readers from the first hip check to the final hat trick. Although over Rocky Top, series fans will enjoy this fun amusing shifter romance where females might beat you up as much over chocolate as a slur.

Harriet Klausner

The Pleasure Project-JAX, Jenna McCormick and Cassie Ryan

March 31, 2013

The Pleasure Project
JAX, Jenna McCormick and Cassie Ryan
Kensington Aphrodisia, Mar 26 2013, $14.00
ISBN: 9780758241795

“The Science of Pleasure” by JAX. While working on the Phoenix Project’s mission to find a way to preserve healthy cells while a patient underwent cancer treatments that normally shredded any cell, Dr. Eric Paulson stole Dr. Jenesis Bruehl’s promising research. Instead of using it to save lives, he tested it on human subjects leading to a superhuman breed while Jenesis and other altruistic scientists became notoriously tagged. One of these super-humans Kincaid Gregory offers himself as a test subject to Jenesis. Neither expected the attraction.

“Project Seduction” by Jenna McCormick. Jace Donovan is assigned to travel on the Trist space cruise liner as a paid pleasure companion at a bachelorette party thrown for supermodel Constance Ripley. At a deserted North Carolina inn, Jace meets the owner, mother of the bride Evie, and her odious ex Yon. Attracted to the older woman, Jace risks his employment for a chance with his woman.

“A Pirate’s Pleasure” by Cassie Ryan. For two decades space pirate Captain Red Death and her merry crew have raided ships. Now they target the flagship run by Captain Dare McFadyen carrying munitions to Gavin 2 at war with Gavin 1. They are shocked to meet Red as she is Dani McGovern, a protégé of Dare’s grandfather. Dani and Dare are in heat from that first moment they met, but he is a war profiteer and she is a war preventer.

These are three entertaining heated over the top science fiction romances starring delightful protagonists.

Harriet Klausner

Passion’s Prey-A.C. Arthur

March 28, 2013

Passion’s Prey
A.C. Arthur
St. Martin’s, Mar 26 2013, $7.99
ISBN: 9780312549121

FBI Agent Xavier Santos-Markland the Topetenia jaguar-shifter works the deadliest predator cases mostly in the Washington D.C. area. He drops in at Athena’s topless where he watches Caprise Delgado perform an exotic dance that has him and the other patrons drooling. Though his senses are overwhelmed by his desire, Xavier realizes Rogue shifters, who abandoned the Etica code of ethics and deserted one of the five tribes to most likely join drug dealing Topetenia Sabar Tavares’ gang, are nearby. With no explanation, he escorts the hybrid dancer to safety where their mutual attraction is temporarily satiated though each craves more.

Xavier knows Caprise conceals something that frightens her from him. He offers his help but she rejects his aid, which angers and frustrates him as he fears for the woman he knows is his life mate. Her stalker continues to threaten her; as this hybrid killer also claims Caprise as his mate.

The latest Shadow Shifters romantic urban fantasy (see Temptation Rising and Seduction’s Shift) is an action-packed entry; as A.C. Arthur expands her realm by introducing other tribes and a new hybrid. The lead couple is a nice pairing of flawed feisty mates though their first encounter following her performance seems very doubtful; while the psychotic villain adds sinister tension to an exciting triangle of life and death.

Harriet Klausner

The Lost-Vicki Pettersson

March 27, 2013

The Lost
Vicki Pettersson
Harper Voyager, Mar 19 2013, $14.99
ISBN: 9780062064653

Five decades ago someone murdered private investigator Griffin Shaw and his wife Evie; the case was never solved. On the bottom rung of the celestial ladder, Griff assists the purebreds by collecting the souls of murder victims; in exchange for his cooperation he has permission to investigate the homicides of him and his spouse. Recently, he met Las Vegas reporter Katherine “Kit” Craig when he was to collect her soul; but he broke the rules by failing to do so as he fell in love with the mortal after Anas clipped his wings due to defiance (see The Taken).

A new deadly drug eats away the flesh of the krokodil users. An obsessed Kit believes she and her beloved angel need to prevent further deaths, but Griff must collect the soul of krokodil user Jeap Yang, which angers his mortal girlfriend. Kit interferes, which leaves her vulnerable to fallen angel Scratch. Still, as is her personality, she leads the charge against the powerful Marielitos Cartel.

The second Celestial Blues bittersweet romantic urban fantasy (see The Taken) is a strong tale starring a hard boiled 1950s detective with a soft boiled heart and the “Impossible Dream” reporter “… willing to march into Hell, for a Heavenly cause”; as defined by her and not heaven. With the angelic hierarchy seemingly real, fans will enjoy this super thriller; as the cold case murder mystery, Scratch and the drug war deftly come together.

Harriet Klausner

I Left My Haunt In San Francisco-Mark Everett Stone

March 25, 2013

I Left My Haunt In San Francisco
Mark Everett Stone
Camel, Mar 15 2013, $15.95
ISBN: 9781603819275

After a decade plus as the top agent and only still living member of his graduation class at the Bureau of Supernatural Investigation, Kal Hakela faked his death so that he could kill the invincible Finnish monster Iku-Turso who murdered his sister (see What happens In Vegas, Dies In Vegas). His BSI boss BB re-recruits him to train the Green Peas in protecting the World At Large where humans dwell from the denizen of The World Under. Once his current term ends, Kal considers retiring with his beloved WWII MI-7 agent Jeanie whom he met in 1943.

BB tells Kal that former BSI agent Thomas Mace jumped to his death in San Francisco. Someone had ripped apart his intestines, but somehow Mace ran up thirty flights of stairs in five minutes, and opened and closed steel doors before leaping off the roof of a building. Kal leads the inquiry in a city where he years ago eliminated a psychopathic serial rapist magic practitioner but left innocents dead and the Bay’s protector Emperor Norton irate.

The third Hakela urban fantasy (see Things to Do in Denver When You’re Un-Dead) is a superb entry as the lone wolf goes into the field with no additional support from a depleted BSI and three major changes in his life. He no longer obsesses with rage over killing monsters; he has Jeanie in his life though she currently works a case in the Bayou; and he learned people care about his well-being after volunteers joined him in Vegas. One thing remains the same; Mark Everett Stone provides another intelligent, wry action-packed satire that will have fans waiting for the next stop on the Hakela Americana tour.

Harriet Klausner

The Dark Heroine: Dinner with a Vampire-Abigail Gibbs

March 23, 2013

The Dark Heroine: Dinner with a Vampire
Abigail Gibbs
Morrow, Mar 5 2013. $14.99
ISBN: 9780062248732

Seventeen year old Violet Lee knows being alone at one in the morning in Trafalgar Square is not a smart move, but clubbing with her BFF Ruby felt wrong after Joel. Violet soon knows there is something worse than being alone at one in the morning in Trafalgar Square when over thirty males with sharpened canes and something else arrive. Prince Kasper Karn kills Claude Pierre, the leader of the thirty men; he and five other teens slaughter the rest of Clan Pierre’s hunters in a flash. Though in the shadows and at a distance beyond normal hearing, Kasper hears Violet whisper jerk; he takes her prisoner though he cannot fathom why he abducts this human Girly instead of either killing or ignoring her.

Kasper gives Girly a choice to either convert from Human to vampire or remain his guest indefinitely until they kill her as her kind can never go back. However complicating matters for His Highness is when he learns who her powerful father is; as murdering Violet is no longer an option if a cross-species war is to be avoided as her dad knows of the existence of his kind.

This is an exhilarating young adult paranormal romance in which the vampire brood is closer to Stoker’s vision than that of Meyer’s. Violet seems insensitive as her stomach never reacts to the blood and gore, and too strong as she never soils her panties upon learning what kidnapped her. Still readers will root for her to come out on top especially against the prince of abusive arrogance.

Harriet Klausner

Shadow Of Freedom-David Weber

March 23, 2013

Shadow Of Freedom
David Weber
Baen, Mar 5 2013, $25.00
ISBN: 9781451638691

The Manticore’s fleet defeated the invincible armada of the Solarian League that had encroached into the Star Empire’s sector with plans with plans to seize the strategic wormholes. However, Tenth Fleet Commander Michelle Henke knows she and the rest of the military have no time to bash in the glory of a stunning victory, The Solarian Office of Frontier Security continues to cause havoc in the Talbott Quadrant especially along the frontier. While all types of warfare continue unabated, the threat to destroy Manticore and its allies remains stratospheric; as does the hostility with the Mesan Alignment. Manticore turns to former enemy People’s Republic of Haven as hopefully an ally.

At the same time, the Mobius Liberation Front informs Manticore that they have begun the liberation rebellion to overthrow the brutal reign of President Lombroso, but need the help from the Star Empire as previously negotiated and promised. No one in Manticore authority ever heard of the MLF so the assumption is the diabolical clever Mesan Alignment is using subterfuge to destroy the bonds between the Star Empire and the smaller under fire independents at a time the fleet cannot divert resources away from the fight against the Solarian League.

This is an engaging Honorverse science fiction thriller with a Cecil B Demille cast distracting from the exciting outer space naval encounters and fascinating political machinations; Henke (not Harrington) loosely is the nearest individual to being the prime player. The storyline also provides a different perspective from events told in A Rising Thunder and Mission of Honor so that the audience knows several key outcomes. Still Shadow Of Freedom is well written and shows the logistical problems of fighting a multi-front war.

Harriet Klausner

Creator: Apocalyptic Sci-Fi Epic, Earth’s Human Behavior Confronted-Allen Pollens

March 21, 2013

Creator: Apocalyptic Sci-Fi Epic, Earth’s Human Behavior Confronted
Allen Pollens
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, Apr 13 2011, $14.99
http://www.createspace.com
ISBN: 9781456306700

On June 14, 2014 in New York City, Professor Thomas Scribner receives a summons to appear at an inquiry to bear witness. He is given no choice whether to appear at the inquest as no essence can refuse the Guardians of the Universe. Seven Guardians are passing judgment on an eighth, the Creator of planet Earth where an experiment went wrong due to the psychopathic selfishness of the individuals making up the dominant sentient species. If ruled a colossal failure the free will test subjects will be terminated.

A stunned Scribner sees a wake-up tragedy the next day and knows he must turn humanity around before mankind’s eradication. He persuades student assistants Susan Bellwether and Andrew Brown to help him write the “Words of the Creator” and convince an avarice world to adhere to “The Credo.” As the world devolves over the years, mostly due to religious dogmatic wars and environmental destruction, the Creator increasingly believes the noble experiment failed. Disheartened the Creator creates warning calamities in 2025 and 2035, but few heed the message. Over those same decades, the three messengers, though considered by most as lunatics, continue their efforts to save earth while marrying and having children. However, a sad Creator leans towards pulling the plug.

With a nod to the song In the Year 2525 (by Zager and Evans), Allen Pollens provides a deep apocalyptic science fiction epic centered on Earth’s Creator confronting human behavior in a refreshing profound Creationism-Judgment Day parable. Fast-paced from the moment a bewildered professor finds himself in Times Square to bear witness to a calamity, readers will appreciate this strong tale as the displeased Creator begins the end.

Harriet Klausner