Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Safeword:Rainbow/Storm clouds - Double Review

Tyler and Vivian have found each other again after a three day fling three years ago. They think they are ideally suited for each other and go forward to try to make a relationship work. And then they realize that Tyler was expecting a 24/7 total power exchange relationship and Vivian will never be a 24/7 submissive. They want to make a relationship work, but how can they get past this? As they try to find a compromise Vivian must deal with what a Total Power Exchange means, even if it is only a part time power exchange. And Tyler must decide if he can be okay with a sometimes Master and sometimes boyfriend relationship. Will they find their pot of gold at the end of the rainbow?
**Summary taken from Goodreads**
Disclaimer: provided by author for an honest review




As a fan of erotica and BDSM stories, there isn't a flogger or candle i haven't liked (in my stories! hah) so i was excited to read something from an author new to me. Safeword: Rainbow by Candace Blevins.
It begins with quite a harsh BDSM scene, too harsh even for my tastes and i've read some pretty out there erotica. The harsh i can deal with, but it felt like a "how to" manual for BDSM, there was no sexy to it, no heat, very clinical. With any erotica and BDSM in particular, the logistics have to include it being sensual for me the reader to enjoy it, to want to read it again. 
I'd like to say it improved, but i don't know, i couldn't get past the first few chapters and i really wanted to but when a book fails for you it's just easier to put it down than to suffer through. 


While it wasn't for me, i always leave a review with the option for other readers to try it for themselves, what isn't for me me, isn't necessarily the same for everyone. This just wasn't my cuppa tea. I like my cuppa tea sexy kinky not just kinky. 


I rate Safeword: Rainbow DNF


=================================


Kendra has lived as a vampire for thousands of years, and she’s been a Domme for the past thousand years. But then she falls for a human man who happens to be wired as a Dom. Neither is interested in a switch relationship, but neither is willing to give up their Dom side, either. They have strong feelings for each other, can they make it work? As Eric learns about the world of vampires and decides whether he can deal with it or not, the other vampires have to figure out whether they can deal with Kendra, their third in command, submitting to a human who some of them feel is so far beneath them on the evolutionary ladder. Can Kendra and Eric battle all of this to find happiness
**Summary taken from Goodreads** 
Disclaimer: Provided by author for an honest review. 


After not finishing Safeword:Rainbow, i went into reading Safeword:Storm Clouds with fresh eyes and im glad i did. It was more up my street, about vampires for one, who doesn't love a good vampire tale with some erotica thrown in too?  


Kendra, a domme from way back wants human Eric as her blood source. Its a sign of weakness in the vampire community to let a mere human dominate you... Cue Eric's alpha status and the vampire chick has a problem since she's attracted to Eric and wants him for her own. 


Eric, adrenalin junkie gamer geek takes easily to the life of vampires, too easy in my opinion, he gets flooded with all this vampire law of do's and don'ts and readily accepts Kendra (although later has a few doubts, that are gotten past) 


While this book i enjoyed the erotic BDSM side, i didn't think it felt very paranormal, the vampires were too human. i don't know, perhaps i'm used to scarier creatures that go bump in the night. So in that respect i mostly concentrated on the BDSM parts of the book which were intense and sexy and well written, very inventive too.  The struggle both characters had with submission, giving power over to the other was intriguing to read, two dominants in the same relationship, that has to cause some trouble! 


For fans of the erotica this is a pleasant read. 
I give Safeword: Storm Clouds by Candice Blevins 3 Sparkles out of 5. 


For author/ release info. go HERE


Smooch
Sparklybearsy 

Monday, 6 June 2011

Darkness Within Giveaway WINNER!!


Thank you SO Much to the awesome author Jennifer Turner
for giving TWO PRINT Books of her Darkness Within series to one winner.
Using Random.Org a winner was chosen...
and they are....


MAR!!! 
I will contact you shortly about your prize.

Thanks to all who commented! 

Smooch!
Sparklybearsy 

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Eternal Hearts - Review, Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!

Toni Tutoro just wants to go home. Banned from Chicago's vampiric society after cutting a swath of violence through the city, she must now successfully complete an investigation for the Lord of Chicago to regain the right to live in her hometown again.To ensure Toni's safety during her probationary period, Drake Black, a feared assassin, is secretly contracted to protect her. Even with direct orders to keep his relationship professional, and his own personal vow to never get involved with a female vampire again, Drake finds himself drawn to Toni in ways he can't explain. But unbeknownst to him...he's tied to one of the people who drove Toni to her night of destruction.
Drake's legendary heritage holds the key to Toni's survival and success, but will she be able to forgive his connection to the brutal night that robbed her of those she loved most? Will Drake be able to forget the betrayals in his past and risk taking one more chance? But most of all - can they find a way to reach each other in the darkness?
**Summary taken from Goodreads**
Disclaimer: Provided by author for an honest review


Purchase:
|Amazon|Books a Million|Kindle|Smashwords|All Romance|

Eternal Hearts by Jennifer Turner is the second book in her Darkness Within series. Book One  Eternal Seduction i fell in complete love with, such a different premise to the vampire world and characters that were not your typical hero/heroine. Very outside of the box and i loved it. So i was super excited for book two to finally be here. 
Eternal Hearts does not disappoint. Here we meet Toni and Drake, an assassin and a fledgling in need of protection. I was intrigued with Drake from ES and although i would have liked him to be a bit more badass assassin like, he was a lovely character, page after page he was funny, charming heart warming, a man's man and just the man for broken Toni who had a past full of horror angst and pain. 
While i did feel bad for Toni, her constant mood changing made me a little dizzy and a lot more irritated, i wanted to yell "pick a mood and stick with it for at least 6 pages!" She reminded me of a stroppy teenager at times, or a toddler hyped up on sugar, I wasn't invested in her as i was in Logan from ES but i liked her. 
My Odin made an appearance again, if you read my review for the previous book you know i loved the God of War, i really hope he gets a book! 
The plot moves along nicely, I was more interested in the character building though, there's a few characters for the future im hoping, some of the world politics lost me, nonetheless Eternal Hearts delivers a great tale, I love the characters Ms Turner has given us so far, everyone should read this series, the writing is brilliance, dragging you into a world of good and bad and the most unusual heroes and heroines that you can't help be charmed by. 
Im already anxious for book three. 

Favourite Quotes: 

Unfortunately for her, he’d left his heart in a different shirt and his give-a-shit was broken. 

And a funny quote from my Odin, God Of War. Lurrrve him! 

Odin snorted behind Drake, so loud, he was sure the people in the next state heard it. “Undead slut of the night. That’s awesome. I’m so gonna use that the next time I see his mom.”Jake let out a sigh as a look of complete resignation washed over his face. “Are we gonna start with the mom jokes again? Because, se-riously, like I told you the last time, my mom’s dead. She’s been dead for over three hundred years. You need to get some new material.”  


The last thing she needed to be doing was ogling some hot guy who had…the most depressing set of blue eyes she’d ever seen.



I give Eternal Hearts 4 sparkles out of 5 - a sheer ride of awesome.  

                                                 ======================

And now, i'm happy to welcome to Bear's talk corner, Author of the Darkness Within Series, Jennifer Turner. 


Hello Jennifer, thank you so much for stopping by Sparkly's today..  
 Thanks so much for having me, Sparkly! I’m absolutely thrilled to be here. :) 

 
1: For someone who hasn't read your Darkness Within series yet (silly people!) can you tell us a little about it, its world, politics, characters?  
 You know, I think the series blurb I had to write for my agent probably sums up the Darkness Within world better than anything I could come up with right now. And I think it’d be fun to share it here because it’s not something readers would normally see. This is actually the blurb that editors at major publishing houses see when my series goes out on submission. :) 
 The Darkness Within series is more than just a place where immortal things go bump in the night. It’s a world darker and sexier than anything you know, filled with more mystery and intrigue than you’ve ever dreamed of. Why should a Fledgling vampire sit in the dark, brooding over his cursed condition, when he can live in the lap of luxury by manipulating the humans around him? Why should an Ancient vampiress settle for influencing a few mundane humans, when she can raise an army of Fledglings to carry out her darkest whims?
The denizens of this world don’t want your pity – they want your blood.
Cursed to forever war against each other, vampires now stalk the night beside their prey, hidden behind a veil of deceit and manipulation. And while the Fledglings scramble to earn power and prestige by secretly influencing select humans, it’s the Ancients who move the Fledglings as pawns, building empires, deepening age old rivalries, and crushing opponents with moves centuries in the making. However, in the eternal shadow war that is supernatural society, even the Ancients dance under the twisted strings of a bitter feud that began well before their time.
But Fledgling to Ancient, only one thing lightens the darkness and calms the beast that rages within. Even more for the damned – love – is the highest prize. With it, anything is possible and even the darkest of monsters can be redeemed. Without it, their connection to humanity severs and even trusted friends become expendable once they’ve outlived their usefulness.   
Everything is sacred and nothing is forgotten when immortality lies at your feet… 

2: Eternal Seduction was one of my favourite books of last year, how did the idea of making your heroine a homeless drug addict come to you, and was the shock factor for your readers a big part of making her that way?  
 The idea for Logan actually came to me while I was standing in the bookstore. I kept picking up book after book where the beautiful heroine had a high paying job/fancy house/college education, and I wondered what would happen if a heroine didn’t have any of those things. I wondered, what if she didn’t have a job, or a high school diploma…or even a home? Then I wondered, what if she isn’t what most people would consider pretty? What if, since she lives on the streets, she isn’t able to shower regularly and is really skinny because she isn’t eating the way she should be? Believe it or not, a lot of my ideas actually come from a good “What if?” session. And that’s exactly how Logan was born. :)  

As for the shock factor, I wasn’t really going for that response – but more for the opportunity to present readers with the story of an overlooked character. I think a lot of times in the paranormal romance/urban fantasy genre, you get a heroine who’s had some sort of intense trauma in her past, which lends a strength and a toughness to the character that makes her seem emotionally untouchable. But, most of those stories begin with a heroine who, even if things aren’t going very well for her at that moment, still has a basic education, a home of some sort, and a job, or at least a way to get money. Very rarely do you open a book and see the heroine at what most would consider rock bottom, on the very first page…and that’s what I love about Logan. To the world at large, she probably couldn’t get any lower – but to her, she’s just living another day the best way she knows how.  

3: Kerestyan, now Drake and Odin (I don't need his book to add him to my list already!) are all my new book boyfriends (i thank you greatly!) was one easier to write than the others? who gives you the best lines?  
 You’re very welcome. ;) 

Hmmm. I’m not sure any one character is necessarily easier to write than another is, but I think each definitely shines in their own special place while I’m writing.  

For example, Kerestyan is always a challenge for me to write because he’s such an odd mix of ancient and modern. He tends to stick with a fairly anachronistic speech pattern and always uses big words, so when he breaks the formality and says something crazy like, “Because that’s how I roll.” I practically die laughing at my computer. As does Odin, who happens to be in the scene when Kerestyan makes that comment. ;) 

Drake, on the other hand, is just plain fun to write. He’s a younger character, and he has a charming arrogance about him that makes him very playful. He’s always trying to slip humor into scenes where I least expect it, and what’s worse is – he’s damn good at it. So yeah, Drake definitely wins the fun award. :) 

And Odin…dear, sweet, misunderstood Odin…he’s practically a comedy machine on steroids. He always has something to say, and usually whatever comes out of his mouth is laugh out loud funny. To be honest, I never really know what he’s going to say until he finally says it…and more often than not, I either end up sitting at my computer shaking my head or drying my eyes because I’ve been laughing so hard. He’s just plain crazy. And yes, without a doubt, he always gives me the best lines. ;)  

4: Eternal Hearts, the second in your Darkness Within series sees a very tormented Toni meet Assassin Drake, can you share a little about these two characters? 
 At its core, I think Eternal Hearts is a story about two people who are afraid they don’t deserve to be loved. Toni and Drake have both made mistakes in the past that they aren’t proud of, but each is constantly striving to be better in their own way. Even though she’s a young vampire, Toni holds tight to the people she cares for and never lets an opportunity slip by to show someone how much they mean to her. Whereas Drake has been supernatural since birth, and while his friends aren’t always the most humane beings on the face of the planet - he never asks them to be anything more than themselves. 

I can also tell you that in every book I’ve written thus far, there’s always been the potential for the hero or heroine to end up with someone other than who I originally thought they would. And twice now, it’s actually happened to me. ;) But never once over the course of writing Drake & Toni’s story did either one of them ever glance in another direction. For me, they’re a perfect representation of a couple that was just meant to be together.    

5: Each city has a Lord, does it always have to be an ancient, or can a Fledgling fight their way to the top of the food chain, so to speak?  
 It’s definitely possible for a smart Fledgling to fight their way into becoming the Lord of a city. However, nine times out of ten, it will only happen if said Fledgling has the backing of an Ancient or another powerful supernatural. 

6: I liked the idea of Servios, is there ever a time they would be turned to full vampire? (this is where i step forward and volunteer for Odin *cough*)  

LOL! And I’m very sure Odin would have you. After all, he’s a sucker for a lady with a British accent. ;) *Insert very BRIT sounding squee here*
Servios have and often do become full-fledged vampires, but the decision regarding when and why usually depends on the Master. Some vampires won’t create a Child unless they’ve served as a Servio for a specific and usually extended amount of time. Think of it almost like an internship, where you work to learn all the rules and hazards, and then come out more prepared to take the big step into true immortality. Other vampires will tell you, “Once a servant – always a servant.” They tend to see Servios as second-class citizens and can’t imagine one of them actually earning fangs, let alone passing their curse to one of them. 
To be honest, at least the way I see it, the decision to turn a Servio into a Child gets more complicated the older a vampire is. If you’re a 10,000 year old vampire, and your personal Servio has been with you the majority of that time, chances are they’re more of a friend to you than a servant. You’ve probably come to depend on them during the day, will most likely listen to their council for better or worse, and you might even love them in some ways (and/or vice versa). Turning that beloved friend into a vampire can be a risky gambit. Vampires are constantly in competition with each other for food, power, and prestige. Is it really a good idea to put someone who knows you so well on even ground with you? What if the new relationship between Sire and Child sours? Your former Servio, now Child, probably knows your deepest, darkest secrets…and more importantly, there’s a damn good chance they know when and where you sleep. 

7: Now for the question that's been burning in my mind just waiting to be asked: WHEN is My Odin getting his book? *grins* Is it book three? *crosses all crossable parts* 
 Odin’s book, Eternal Embers, is book #5 in the series. And if I get everything I want in the next few months or so (unless my agent sells the series to a major publisher for a bazillion dollars – which I do want – but that’s besides the point ;) you should have Odin in your hands in October of 2012. :D  

8: If book three isn't Odin's *insert sad face here* can you tell us who is next, and what to look forward to plot wise? Is it Vouclade? *crosses fingers again*  
 The answer to who gets the next series book is below. ;) However, Vouclade & Kasey’s story will be told via the Ascension novella trilogy. And the first novella, Ascension: The Revelation, will actually release sometime this summer. I’m thinking mid to late August. The novellas run parallel to the Darkness Within series, but don’t fall into the overall plot arc connecting the series books. Plus, Vouclade’s a darker character, being an immortal mad scientist and all, and his story is too long to be told in one book – so he gets three very long novellas. :) 

The image for Tober on Jen's Website is the Diesel man!
Umm.. HAI Oktober!!
9: Oktober, i was really intrigued with, he's a character that demands attention, and although not a conventional hero *laughs* i'm sure if you can turn a drug addict into a worthy heroine, you can do the same for Tober, will we see him again?  
 Oh, you’ll definitely see Oktober again – and rather soon too. Book #3, Eternal Embrace, belongs to him and Lydia. And as for what you can look forward to plot wise, here’s the back cover blurb: 

Lydia Vincent finds little worth in anyone or anything, save herself and her ability to see the truth in everything. At least, what she perceives to be true. She's not looking for love, not looking for acceptance, and she certainly doesn't need some man messing up her life.
Forced to endure a malevolent ritual thousands of years ago, Oktober sees the world through the jaded eyes of a predator. He's a cold-blooded killer, whose only use for humans is food. But he’s about to get the shock of his immortal life – because the one human who won't fall to the curse of his blood – is the one woman who doesn't want a damn thing to do with him.
When the rise of an Ancient enemy lures Oktober and Lydia together, can Oktober ignore the dark instincts urging him to kill her? Can Lydia put her past behind her and find a way to accept Oktober as he is? Can destiny withstand two people who'll fight it to the bitter end...even if it means dying? 

10: And finally, Which of your characters do you love the best? Is it Odin? it's Odin isn't it? *laughs*  
 I do love Odin…I admit that freely and with great pride. ;) However, if I had to pick a favorite right now, I’d have to go with Oktober. There’s just something so jaded and totally unapologetic about him that I can’t help but to love him. I don’t want to give any spoilers or too much info away about him, especially since his book in next…but I’ve never written a character that blatantly refuses to change the way he does. He is who he is, and makes no excuses for the way he sees the world. I just love everything about him…even his frequent need to eat people…and not in a good way. :D 
He REALLY eats people, folks! bones and all! yet you will love him! Squee! 


Thank you so much for talking to me today, Jennifer, as a rabid fan of your Darkness Within series i am waiting with bated breath for Odin.. i mean Book Three!  
 Thanks so much for having me, Sparkly. :) I really do appreciate how hard you work to bring authors and readers together! I wholeheartedly believe one of the main reasons I have so many awesome readers is because of blogs like yours. So THANK YOU! :) 

Jen has so kindly offered TWO PRINT Books for an International Giveaway. One prize will win a PRINT book of Eternal Seduction and Eternal Hearts! Thank you SO much Jen, you're made of the awesome! 

To Win is SIMPLE! Best comment/question left for Jen about VAMPIRES wins! 
NOW CLOSED!!!! So HURRY!! Please leave a means of contacting you

Find Jen:

Smooch!
Sparklybearsy