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Review – The Devil is a Gentleman July 19, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 4.5 stars, Novellas, Urban Fantasy.
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Title: The Devil is a Gentleman

Author: J.L. Murray

Series: Niki Slobodian

Publisher: Hellzapoppin Press

Publication Date: May 25, 2012

ASIN: B0086D3PM8

Available at: Amazon

Summary:

When hated Congressman Frank Bradley shows up on Nikki Slobodian’s doorstep, Nikki knows he’s nothing but trouble and she’s not wrong. He’s ingested angel blood. Not only does Nikki have to shoot the Congressman to keep him from killing her, now she has to find the angel who’s blood is being distributed by one of the most secret and powerful organizations in the world. In the process she’ll learn more then she’ll ever want to about her boss Sam and she’ll find out that maybe her father wasn’t as power hungry as she thought.

Review:

I was really excited when I saw the second Nikki Slobodian had come out. I started this book a little nervously, wondering if it could possibly be as good as the first book, Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. It was, possibly even better then the first book.

The book starts off with a punch when Frank Bradley shows up at Nikki’s apartment hopped up on angel blood. The action doesn’t stop there as she goes on a mission to hunt down the angel who provided Bradley with the blood.

As the action unfolds, more mysteries are uncovered about Sam among other things. There were several things going on at the same time. None of them were too confusing. They just made things even more exciting.

Nikki’s character solidified as the book unfolded. Her character seemed to harden and coalesce as the book progressed making her larger then life. Bobby Gage, her partner was also further developed. More details about his life were revealed.

The more I learned about Sam, the more astonished I became. I totally didn’t see it coming. No spoilers, but it was a great surprise. Looking back, there were enough clues to who he was, I was just so absorbed in the story I just didn’t bother putting them together.

For a 200 pages book, there’s a lot packed inside of it. At the same time, I did wish it were longer just because I wished I could spend even more time with Nikki and co.

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Review – Jessica McClain: Blooded June 17, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 4.5 stars, Novellas, Urban Fantasy.
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3 comments

Title: Jessica McClain: Blooded

Author: Amanda Carlson

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Publisher: Orbit

Publish Date: April 11, 2012

ASIN: B0078XGUZQ

Available at: AmazonBarnes and Noble

Summary:

Jessica was born to the Alpha Werewolf of the Pack. Not only is she the only female, she’s human. She’s been called Daughter of Cain, a witch, a curse by superstitious werewolves. Now that  she’s nineteen she decides to take her fight to the ring. Hopefully her fight will win her freedom off the compound.

Review:

This short novella was action-packed. From the first moments in the ring to the last moments of the story, it was filled to the brim with violence. It’s not that it was gory, it was just heart-stopping thrills.

Jessica is fighting for freedom from the werewolves who are threatening her life at the Compound. Her father doesn’t want to let her go. She shows a level-head and a strength of will that I admire.

This is a wonderful prelude to the full-length book Full Blooded. You’re given a taste of their world and of the independence of spirit Jessica has. For such a short novella this was also a very satisfying read, although the teaser of Full Blooded at the end was a little hard for me to take. I’ll have to wait  for September for it to come out!

Review – Bone Blade Girl February 19, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 4 stars, Fantasy, Novellas.
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Bone Blade Girl

by A. D. Bloom

Molly was forced to kill to protect her brother. In the eyes of her people, this makes her  a monster.

Vora is a Stitchlife witch who has discovered Sugar Music. A powerful magic that can save the ruins of the cities. She’s run away from the noble family she’s supposed to serve so that Sugar Music won’t be misused.

In the wake of a massacre, Molly has runaway only to run across of Vora. Vora rescues Molly and changes her into a witch-sped warrior.

In order to save Sugar Music, many sacrifices must be made. Some of them might include some monstrous acts on Molly’s part. For while young, she can be ruthless but she doesn’t want to be considered that way. She also shows a very vulnerable side that is very endearing.

Sugar Music offers Molly a means to Molly’s salvation or a means to her damnation. It all depends on how much she’s willing to sacrifice.

This character driven novella was highly entertaining and the pages seemed to fly by. It’s a fast-paced adventure that’s highly imaginative.

Molly is someone I took to immediately. You really feel for her plight. You want to comfort her. You want her to succeed. You want life to go right for her.

She becomes more of a superhero as the book goes on and as she gains her witch-sped powers. This makes her all the more special because she’s still just a little girl at the same time.

The problems I had? For one thing, the villains seemed one-dimensional to me. They were shallow and lacked intensity. To me, a truly great story has antagonists with some fire in them.

For another, despite my great liking for Molly, she still lacked a certain depth that I like to see in my characters. Vora also could have been more fleshed out as well. For some reason, they had a certain superficial air.

Finally, a few plot devices seemed corny. There were over-sized flying wasps that reminded me of 1950’s movie props. They were a little hard to swallow.

I’m still really looking forward to reading the rest of the novellas in this series.