What a week. I spent the last three days in a room with 50 or so of my colleagues from across the US, Mexico and Canada. Very cool to meet some people who were only names on e-mails or voices on a conference call, but the organizers really over-did it. 9 hours of being talked at with barely any time allowed to actually interact with people brought from all over the continent was tiring and not very productive. But the week sped by. I have something similar on Monday and Tuesday but only about 10 of us. Crazy busy and I thank god for a phone that can access the internet.
Wicked Gentlemen by Ginn Hale
Blind Eye Books
This is not really my genre, steampunk fantasy religion, all big no-nos for me as a rule. The results. Absolutely amazing. Yeah yeah, never say never. Belimai is a drug addicted Prodigal (demons no longer live in hell and are "people") and Harper is a priest, aka cop. The cops use torture in the name of religion to generally get confessions from people, often Prodigals. However Harper and Belimai end up teaming up to catch some serial killers who are preying on Prodigals, Belimai nearly getting killed in the process. This is a two part book and in the second, Harper stumbles across a murder that is being covered up by his boss and soon he's a wanted man himself, and he and Belimai are trying to find evidence to convict the bad guy, escape from the police and Balimai is trying to get off drugs. You also get to find out more about Harper and what makes him tick. It's hard to put it all here but it's gritty, graphic, sad, sweet in it's way. It's kind of like a super gritty crime drama on TV with a romance thrown in. All I can say is read it. It's not that graphic either and I'm trying to convince my teen she should read it. Apparently in exchange I have to help her with math. Umm, I doubt she'll read it if that's the deal.
Rinse and Repeat by Amberly Smith (188 pages)
Peat is a repeater. He is sent to various places around the country to stop a crime or catch a criminal and until that happens, the day keeps happening over and over again. He is sent to Idaho to save Jake who keeps getting shot at a skate park. Everyday he tries to figure out who is killing Jake, and soon he starts trying to throw himself in front of the bullet and it's up to about day 60 and he still can't figure it out, but there's a problem, he's falling for Jake even though every day, to Jake, Peat is a total stranger. However Jake seems to start remembering things, not clearly but he knows something is up and soon Peat's boss of sorts, shows up to help out and catch the bad guy. Jake and Peat are both in college and Peat has no idea why or how he's a repeater, it just started happening when he hit 19. It was kind of sad, because anything that happens while he's in a loop is forgotten. The first guy he had sex with didn't even remember it and it starts to happen with Jake and he hates it, but he has to save him. If you need to know exactly why he's a repeater and how it works this will make you crazy, because even Peat and his boss don't know. It just happens. I did start to suspect the killer and it was kind of a creeptastic ending, but Jake was a nice guy with nice granola parents and the story really sucked me in as Peat kept adapting and gathering information to try and solve the puzzle. So definitely a different premise as I've not come across it in romance before. Worth a read I think.
Last Call Europe: Black Wolf by Belinda McBride (110 pages)
Brutus is a wolf shifter on an around the world chase of a brutal serial killer. (Lordy, I seem to have a crime theme going here too). He decides to hop ahead to London and get ahead of the killer, and ends up at a paranormal bar. A pack of huskies come in and they are celebrating Jasper's birthday. Huskies are annoying, but Brutus finds Jasper attractive. At some point there is a type of game at the bar where a patron chooses a drink at random and someone in the audience takes up the offer and they retire for sex in the back. When Jasper picks a "black wolf" Brutus "volunteers". It's not quite what he thought when he falls asleep and wakes up to find Jasper is a Dom at heart and he seems to be a sub. After some hot smexin', Jasper admits he knows about the crimes and he works for a mysterious demon. Despite Brutus' better judgment, when Jasper is nearly killed by a demon he teams up with Jasper's boss and his two tiger shifter mates to try and solve the mystery. This is a follow-on to the story of Jasper's boss and his two mates (m/m/f - Last Call Europe: Devil's Advocate), you don't really need to read it first although any questions I had were about the three others so I suppose that would solve my curiosity if I wanted to. I liked the D/s element with Brutus being big and strong yet admitting that sometimes he liked to let go and also his resistance to being bonded to Jasper. He was a lone wolf in all ways and it was hard for him to admit, and Jasper to accept that he wouldn't just take off. So if you like crime stories with shifters and demons and intrigue it's a good choice and I like the author's style.