DIK Reading Challenge Review: The Serpent Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt

Sunday, February 28


Title: The Serpent Prince
Author:  Elizabeth Hoyt
Series:  The Princes trilogy
Genre:  Historical Romance
Publisher:  Warner Books
Format: mass market paperback
Date/Year: 9/2007

Disclosure:  This book was procured from my local library for my reading pleasure and review for my participation in the DIK reading challenge

Summary from the publisher: 

WHEN THE DEVIL MEETS AN ANGEL

Country bred Lucy Craddock-Hayes is content with her quiet life. Until the day she trips over an unconscious man—a naked unconscious man—and loses her innocence forever.

HE CAN TAKE HER TO HEAVEN

Viscount Simon Iddesleigh was nearly beaten to death by his enemies. Now he’s hell-bent on vengeance. But as Lucy nurses him back to health, her honesty startles his jaded sensibilities—even as it ignites a desire that threatens to consume them both.

OR TO HELL

Charmed by Simon’s sly wit, urbane manners, and even his red-heeled shoes, Lucy falls hard and fast for him. Yet as his honor keeps him from ravishing her, his revenge sends his attackers to her door. As Simon wages war on his foes, Lucy wages her own war for his soul using the only weapon she has—her love…

My Musings:
 
The Serpent Prince is my second favorite Elizabeth Hoyt novel. (first is To Seduce a Sinner).  And right now she is one of my favorite historical romance authors.  I just finished reading The Princes Trilogy and loved each one of them (The Leopard Prince is my third favorite).
 
There are several things I loved about this book.  The first was how refreshing the heroine Lucy was.  She wasn’t eccentric, a blue stocking, or even a bold or take charge kind of heroine that are in so many historical romances these days.  She isn’t titled, or wealthy, or even poor for that matter.  She doesn’t have a down trodden and tragic story.  She’s normal.  She comes from a middle class family, and is comfortable with the life she leads.  She takes care of her father, has charity work, close friends, and is “almost” affianced to the town vicar.  She’s a commoner with no aspirations to become gentry.  I love her because it’s not her social status in the ton, or needing to be rescued or saved, that draws the hero to her…it’s just her…as a person that he is attracted to, despite her “plainness”.
 
Simon, our hero, couldn’t be more different than Lucy.  He is a viscount, a privileged and titled member of the ton.  Who is known for his dissolute ways.  In fact, he has embraced the lifestyle of a rake as if it was his profession.  He was never meant to be the Viscount Iddesleigh, as the younger brother the responsibilities of the family and the title were left to his dependable older brother.  That is, until his older brother was killed…which sparks a quest for blood thirsty revenge against the men responsible for his brother’s death.
 
Lucy and Simon’s romance is an opposites attract love story.  Simon dresses in the height of fashion with his red heeled shoes (a trademark of his personal style), Lucy dresses for practicality.  She finds joy in every day life, Simon is weary of every thing in his life…all except his driving need to avenge his brother, and become even just a little bit worthy of being the viscount.  Simon opens Lucy’s eyes to all of the possibilities that the world contains outside of her small sphere of acquaintances.  Before meeting Simon she didn’t really have the desire to travel outside of where she lives, but after knowing him she starts to question if she is settling because her limited choices.  He’s exciting and different to her, as she is to him.  Simon sees his recovery in the country as a respite from the life he leads and is coming to despise, and finds Lucy to be his personal “angel”.  
 
Naturally they fall in love, but his quest for revenge leads him to repeatedly duel, and even though he is driven to call out every one of the men responsible for his brother’s murder, each death weighs heavily on his conscious. How could a "murderer" be worthy of the love of an “angel”, and dreads the day Lucy sees him as he sees himself, and loses her love.   He keeps his actions, and his reasons a secret from Lucy, until he finally confesses why he leaves their marriage bed in the middle of the night and returns some mornings weary and bloodied.
 
There is so much to this story that to try and summarize it really doesn’t do it justice.  Lucy has feelings of inadequacies because she is not anything like the ladies of the ton.  And Simon has feelings of inadequacies because he never wanted the title of viscount, add to that his feelings that he doesn’t deserve the love of an “angel” because of who he is, and you have a love story with lots of self doubt, guilt, anguish…and finally redemption.  
 
It was pretty close to perfect in my eyes, including the fairy tale intertwined with main story.  If you haven’t had the pleasure of reading The Princes Trilogy by Elizabeth Hoyt then I would urge you to give all of them a try.  I loved each one of them, and despite being a series, each set of characters deals with very different issues, making each of them refreshingly unique as well as a good read.

Ratings: 4.75 stars (and for a "traditional" historical romance...this one's pretty steamy!)

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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Hidden Gems: Educating Caroline by Patricia Cabot

Friday, February 26


My Hidden Gems of Romance pick for this month is EDUCATING CAROLINE by Patricia Cabot.  Most people may know her by her other pseudonym, Meg Cabot, the author of the famous Princess Diaries (movie included).  But she started her writing career writing historical romances under the name Patricia Cabot.  I have all of Patricia Cabot 's historical romances in my personal library and have reread several of them including EDUCATING CAROLINE (which I don't do often).  I treasure them all for the romance gems that they are.

Caroline, our heroine, is a typical Lady of the ton.  Engaged to a Marquis everything is going according to plan, until she finds her soon to be husband having a sexual encounter with another woman while attending a society event.  What's a woman to do?  The answer is obvious at least to her...ask the Lothario of London for lessons in seduction.

The hero, Braden, is a self made man who grew up in the slums of London to become a successful and wealthy business man.  He plays to win, and will use any means necessary to get what he wants.  And what he wants is the name of the man his fiance is having an affair with, and Caroline knows who he is.  Why wouldn't she when it is her own fiance.  Braden and Caroline enter into a bargain.  He agrees to tutor her in how to satisfy her soon to be husband in bed, in hopes that he can get her to tell him who the unnamed man is, so that he can destroy him for taking what is his.

This story is ALL about seduction...no wonder Iove it :)  Caroline wants to be able to seduce and keep her new husband, and Braden wants to seduce the identity of his foe from Caroline's sealed lips.  The hero starts out with ulterior motives, but is soon seduced by our heroine's charm, her goodness, and her wit.  Caroline is seduced by the bad boy and falls in love with a man that is nothing like she is supposed to marry...titled and a member of the ton.  From beginning to end the story is irresistible.

I dearly miss Meg Cabot writing historical romances, for that matter even her contemporary romances (Boy series for instance), but sadly I she is almost exclusively focusing on her YA novels, and her Princess Diary books these days.  So very sad, but true.  All you have to do is take a look at her website and it's glaringly obvious where her focus lies these days.  She's a wonderful writer, and I don't want to sound as if I am discounting these other novels...I just miss her adult romances (like she used to write).  However, I did notice that she has a new book coming out in June titled INSATIABLE that is tagged as "a modern sequel to Bram Stoker's Dracula"...I'm undecided about whether to read it or not.

I think EDUCATING CAROLINE, and one or two other books written by Patricia Cabot, will always remain a part of my "keepers".  If you haven't had the pleasure of reading this book then I would urge you to give it a try.  Sadly, the book is currently out of print, but it is  available to purchase new in digital format.  You can also try to buy it in the secondary market (like Amazon or Ebay) but the prices they want for a "new" copy are OUTRAGEOUS!  You might also try your local library (which is where I first discovered the book).  Consider it a romance treasure hunt :) 


Lady Caroline Linford is horrified to discover...

her fiancé, the Marquis of Winchilsea, in the arms of another woman. Unfortunately, Victorian society considers such masculine peccadilloes a trifle; canceling their imminent wedding would be unthinkable. But Caroline's wish is for the man she is to marry to desire only her...and she seeks lessons in the art of romance from the best teacher: London's most notorious rake.

Braden Granville may be a famous lover...

but he has no intention of taking part in Caroline's scheme -- until he learns she has something he wants: the name of his own unfaithful fiancée's lover. As their passionate tutelage begins, sparks fly -- and the lines between teacher and student fall away. Now there is just one last lesson to learn: on the subject of true love, the heart chooses its own unpredictable ways.



What's your Hidden Gem of Romance pick for February?


Hidden Gems meme is hosted by Seductive Musings on the last Friday of every month (barring any special events). Anyone passionate about romance novels can participate. Just do the following:
  • Share a hidden gem that you've read and feel has been overlooked, or deserves to be brought to the attention of romance readers (please don't include books currently on blog tours). 
  • The book can be a new release, a current release, or an older novel. As long as it is in print, it is available for purchase, and is classified as a romance then it qualifies (historical romance, contemporary romance, paranormal romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance...). 
  • Reveal your hidden gem on the last Friday of the month on your blog using the Hidden Gem icon and following the participation rules. Tell us why you feel so passionately about this novel, then link your gem back to the current Seductive Musings Hidden Gem post. You can include excerpt links, teasers, back cover blurbs, book trailers, interviews, giveaways...whatever you like. 
  • The following Monday I will compile a list of the Hidden Gems posted and I'll have a poll where you can vote for your favorite hidden gems. At the end of the year I will compile the top hidden gem for each month and you can vote for the top 5 Hidden Gems of the year. Once the brightest gems are revealed I will invite the authors to guest at Seductive Musings to talk about their books, and upcoming releases.


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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Seductive Museum-Gallery of Fine Cover Art: My favorite cover for February

Thursday, February 25

 

My Seductive Museum Cover Art pick for the month of February is....BROKEN by Shiloh Walker.


I choose this cover not only for the hot hero,  but because it tells a story about the story.  It's dark, much like the demons that both the hero and the heroine must fight, both emotionally and physically before they can find love.  The hero is front and center, much like he is in the book.  He's in your face, and while he knows what he wants, at first he's somewhat standoffish. His arms are crossed and gives the impression of being closed off, which he is....but there's also a protective quality about the hero on the cover since he's wearing dog tags with a brooding but not menacing look, all of which is true about the character in the book.

The woman in the background is in shadow, you can't see her clearly...and that's deliberate.  You don't know what she looks like...who is she?  The heroine in Broken is  on the run and hiding from a past that threatens her very existence, but when she meets our hero she is drawn to him and the attraction and need for him throws her off balance.  She's not who she says she is and while she desperately wishes she could have the life she envisions with him, she believes it's impossible.  Which is why I think having part of the book off kilter and slightly skewed is a perfect choice.

The storm clouds, the brooding mood, the colors, everything about it evokes the emotional turmoil, however there's also a glimmer of hope because the storm could also be passing and the sun is peaking from the clouds.  When you put it all together it tells us a little of what the hero and heroine experience on their journey to find their happily ever after.  I think it's perfect for this book and before I even read it, I was drawn to the cover.  I hope it prompts readers to pick it up because the story that inspired the cover is the perfect blend of suspense and romance.  I loved all of it front, back, and everything in between.  Whether you buy this book because of the great cover, or the intriguing blurb I don't think you will be disappointed.  I wasn't.

What's your Cover Art pick this month?



Seductive Museum-Gallery of Fine Cover Art monthly meme is hosted by Seductive Museums the last Thursday of every month. Want to participate? Here's how:
  • Share your favorite romance novel cover from any of the romance novels you’ve read this month, and remember this has nothing to do with the actual content of the book…just the cover.
  • The romance novel can be a new release, a current release, or an older book. As long as it is in print, it is available for purchase (no preorders), and is classified as a romance then it qualifies (historical romance, contemporary romance, paranormal romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance...).
  • Present your book cover art on the last Thursday of the month (barring any special events) on your blog using the Seductive Museums icon and following these participation rules. Tell us what you love about the cover, and then link your choice to the current Seductive Museum Gallery.
  • The following week I will compile a list of the submitted book covers and I'll have a poll where you can vote for your favorites. At the end of the year I will list the top book covers for each month and you can vote for the top 5 covers of the year. Once the masterpiece of the year has been chosen we will honor the author and the cover artist with an award.

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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Share the Love: Pleasure of a Dark Prince

Wednesday, February 24

 

This week's Share the Love should really be titled "Share the Immortals After Dark Love ":)  The Immortals After Dark is by far my favorite paranormal romance series.  At times it's emotional, other times it's funny and funky, but what I love the most is that it encompasses many different types of characters.  You get Valkyrie, Vampires, Werewolves, Witches, Demons, Ghosts....And to all of my paranormal romance reader followers, I have to say that I don't read a lot of paranormal (ie I haven't read Sherrilyn Kenyon, JR Ward, Christine Feehan...). Shocking I know, but nevertheless true.  However, I think just about anyone will tell you how great this series is.

Last week while I was away, Kresley Cole's newest book in her paranormal romance series, PLEASURE OF A DARK PRINCE was released.  I've been waiting for this one for what seems like forever!  Here's a peek:


New York Times bestselling author Kresley Cole enraptures again with this seductive tale of a fierce werewolf prince who will stop at nothing to protect the lovely archer he covets from afar.

A DANGEROUS BEAUTY

Lucia the Huntress: as mysterious as she is exquisite, she harbors secrets that threaten to destroy her—and those she loves.

AN UNCONTROLLABLE NEED

Garreth MacRieve, Prince of the Lykae: the brutal Highland warrior who burns to finally claim this maddeningly sensual creature as his own.

LEAD TO A PLEASURE SO WICKED. . . .

From the shadows, Garreth has long watched over Lucia. Now, the only way to keep the proud huntress safe from harm is to convince her to accept him as her guardian. To do this, Garreth will ruthlessly exploit Lucia’s greatest weakness—her wanton desire for him. . . .


In case you missed the free e-book containing the very first story in the series, Warlord Wants Forever, that was given away a few months ago to celebrate the release of DEEP KISS OF WINTER and PLEASURE OF A DARK PRINCE then today is your lucky day.  Warlord Wants Forever was the first book in the Immortals After Dark series, and was originally published in the PLAYING EASY TO GET anthology with Sherrilyn Kenyon and Jaid Black. You can read the free novella by clicking on the cover below.


I think this free pamplet (if you can really call 291 pages a pamphlet) is a great way to discover this series.  Not only does it contain Warlord Wants Forever, but it also contains excerpts from all of the books in the series to date, as well as a glossary...in essence it's all kinds of goodness.  You can also check out Kresley Cole's website to learn more about this series.  She has a FAQ, a Lore Glossary, Character Descriptions, Origin of the series...just what a booklover like myself loves to feast on :)

I started following Kresley Cole's novels by reading her historical romances, but you, my lucky readers can discover Kresley Cole's paranormal world by entering to win the first three books in the series...all signed by the author!  One follower of this blog will win signed copies of A HUNGER LIKE NO OTHER, NO REST FOR THE WICKED,  and WICKED DEEDS ON A WINTER'S NIGHT.  I love it when you can  binge read a great series back to back without having to wait, don't you?   

While Kresley could not be here today to celebrate the release of PLEASURE OF A DARK PRINCE due to demanding deadlines, she wanted to make sure to "share the love" with all of you by generously donating the books for this giveaway.  Many thanks Kresley and Brooke for making this giveaway possible, and congrats on your new release!!  

Here's how you can enter to win...

Ways to earn entries:
  • Mandatory: For this giveaway you must do two things... (good for 1 entry)
  1. First answer the question in a comment:  In an established series, do you feel like you have to start with book one and work your way up to the newest release, or do you start with the newest release  then eventually work you way through the rest?   Me, I'm a complete binge reader and while I mostly like to start a series from beginning and work my way forward I've been known on several occasions to pick up the book that is most readily available (usually the newest) and if I like it, then devour the author's backlist as quickly as I can get my booklover hands on them :) 
  2. Second, you must complete this entry form
  • Mandatory:  You MUST be a Google Friend Connect (GFC) follower in order to be eligible to win (unfortunately an email subscriber, or subscription in Google reader, and a follower are not the same thing so make sure you are signed up as a follower if you'd like to win this book)
  • Blog about this author's giveaway on your blog and leave a link with your comment (good for 15 entries)
  • If you don't have a blog, don't worry you can earn extra entries by telling your friends. If they leave a comment on this post and mention that you sent them you can each earn extra entries (good for 5 entries for the referrer and the commenter for each friend) 
  • Purchase any item from the Seductive Musings Amazon store by using this link, or the Amazon widget contained within this post and email a copy of your purchase receipt to me no later than the deadline to enter (email available in sidebar). Sorry purchases made prior to this date do not apply, and link contained in this post must be used. No faxes or snail mail copies are allowed. No purchases are necessary to win. (good for 25 entries, or 50 entries if a purchase is made from the featured author's available titles)
How to enter:
  • You can choose to enter as many different ways that you want, but please place all of your entries in ONE comment
Rules and disclaimers: 
  • This contest is open anyone, but I do ask that only readers who have not read these books enter to win
  • The contest will end on February 27th at 11:59 pm EST and winner will be posted after they have been selected
  • Winner will be selected using Random.org
  • The winner will have THREE days from the date they are posted to provide a mailing address. If you do not contact me within three days a replacement winner will be selected. NO EXCEPTIONS
  • The book(s) will be mailed directly from the publisher or author and no substitutions are allowed
  • Seductive Musings is not responsible for prizes that are not honored, distributed in a timely manner, lost, stolen, or damaged during transit 
  • All giveaways are subject to change/cancellation without prior written notice 
Share the Love is a weekly meme hosted by Seductive Musings every Wednesday. 
  • Every Wednesday post whatever it is that you love on your blog or website.
  • Then leave a link to your post in the comments on the weekly Share the Love post at Seductive Musings. If you don't have a blog, that's ok you can still share the love in your comment on the weekly Seductive Musings post.
  • What can you share...well that depends on what you love :) Here are some ideas: a new blog or website, a great recipe that is a taste bud triumph, new shoes or purse that you seriously can't afford but lust after anyway, a great love story like the ones from When Harry Met Sally, a love note to someone special in your life (or wish was), a book you just adore and can't wait to share with someone, a song or CD that plays on repeat until it's worn out, poems, pictures, videos, or even baby giggles :) I think you get the idea.

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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Teaser Tuesday: Broken

Tuesday, February 23

 
"Finally, she'd agreed to leave her bastard husband and there was no way on earth Sam was going to do anything to change her mind.  If it took disappearing....fine, she'd disappear."  p. 268 Broken by Shiloh Walker



As always you can click on any cover to learn more and/or buy the books featured on this blog.



*Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read. Open to a random page. Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Winners: Legend of the White Wolf

Monday, February 22

I have the two winners to announce from the Legend of the White Wolf giveaway.  They are:





  1. elaing8
  2. Razlover's Book Blog

Congratulations to the winners!  And thank you to everyone else who participated.  As always, you can click on any of the covers listed to purchase the books you are dying to read...even if you didn't win.

If however,  you've been lucky enough to have already won any of these books in another giveaway please let me know so that an alternate winner can be selected.  In addition, all winners will have until Thursday 2/25 to contact me with their mailing address, otherwise alternate winners will be selected.  You can send your mailing address to me by using the link "email me" in the sidebar under "Novel Spotlight".


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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

Read more...

Monday's Muse

Sorry, but the image containing the Monday's Muse has been removed from this blog so as not to violate any copyright issues.  Thanks for your understanding!

This week's Muse is inspired by the book I am currently reading...Broken by Shiloh Walker.  When I look our Muse he embodies the hero, Quinn, well except for the hair, but the book cover has him in short hair too.   I'm only about 150 pages into it, but I can tell it's only going to keep getting better.  It's one of those books that is hard to put down, and I love it when that happens! I have to hurry up and finish this post so I can go back to reading :)

Did you miss me?  I missed "talking" to you, but I have to say the new site design is looking FABULOUS, so the week I was away was time well spent.  I almost hated to come back to the current site because it's just not as pretty or as functional as the new look, but this is where you are so this is where I need to be too :)   It's good incentive to hurry up and get it done.  I had originally planned on unveiling the new design in April, but if all goes well I think I'll be ready earlier than that.  Woo hoo!  I might just preview it to you with my new grab button...seriously the new banner design that Barbara from Designs by Barbara did for me ROCKS!  It's beyond awesome and is exactly the type of feeling that I wanted for the blog.  Now, if I can just get my problem with the background resolved....

Enough of my HTML woes...here's what I have planned this week:
  • On Wednesday's Share the Love post I have a special treat for you all, and it involves Kresley Cole's Immortals After Dark series...if you've never read them before you'll definitely want to check out this week's post.
  • Thursday is the monthly Seductive Museums Gallery of Fine Cover Art post.  I still haven't picked one yet.  You have until Thursday to pick and post yours.
  • Friday is the monthly Hidden Gems of Romance post.  I'm still up in the air about which book to feature for this as well.  I need to give this one some serious thought.  What's yours going to be?
  • Then sometime this week I'll have the winners from the Terry Spear Legend of the White Wolf post. I'll also have a couple new and easy giveaways for you.  I'll post them when I have time, so they will be somewhat of a surprise for you :)  
  • And I will be posting a couple of reviews, probably on Saturday and Sunday for the meme's I participate in (DIK Challenge and the Erotic Romance Challenge), as well as a few others....then that's the end of February!  Already.  
Glad to be back with you all...
Have a great Monday!


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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

Read more...

Monday's Muse

Monday, February 15

Sorry, but the image containing the Monday's Muse has been removed from this blog so as not to violate any copyright issues.  Thanks for your understanding!

This week's Muse is here to keep you company ALL week.  That's because I will be diligently working on the new blog design....hard hats may be required.   He'll be at your beck and call 24/7....and he's got all the tools he needs :)  

Depending on how things progress I hope to have a few new reviews to post on Saturday (or before...maybe).  Otherwise, I hope you all have a great Monday and a fantastic week...Enjoy!

p.s.  If there's something that you would like to see on this blog, or things you don't like about the design, layout, readability...leave a comment. I'll read through all of them and take everything under consideration.  I'm open to any of your ideas!

Booklover signature (revised)

*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

Read more...

Review: Legend of the White Wolf by Terry Spear

Thursday, February 11

Title: Legend of the White Wolf
Author:  Terry Spear
Series: Book #4 in the Werewolf series
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Casablanca Sourcebooks
Format:  mass market paperback
Date/Year:  February 2010

This book was provided to me by the publisher for review

Summary from the publisher:

In this fourth in Spear's series, Private Eye Cameron MacPherson and Faith O'Mallery are both on quests that lead them into the world of magical wolves...  

Cameron arrives in the Canadian Arctic to search for his partners in his P.I. business who are late returning from a hunting trip. Faith is there to discover what her father had seen in the same area years earlier that had made him lose touch with reality—man-wolves, he called them. 

The two tumble into an icy world of enemies bent on destroying the lupus garou kind. As they turn into lupus garou themselves, and bond with the pack that only they can rescue from destruction, Cameron and Faith find their soul mates in each other.
My Musings:

This is my first book by Terry Spear and the first I’ve read in her werewolf series.  I was immediately pulled into the story at Cameron and Faith’s first meeting.  Faith had been given the key to the wrong room and walked in on Cameron fresh from a shower.  I thought it was a very promising start. There was an immediate attraction between the two and couldn’t wait to read the rest of the story.  There are many things that I liked about the book, and there are a few things that didn’t work as well for me. 

I liked that the book started out focusing on Cameron and Faith, and while the main story was about the danger surrounding their individual missions I thought that not enough time was spent on the relationship and bond that they were supposed to have formed.  For me it seemed like they met, were thrown into a dangerous situation together, and then the reader was supposed to accept that that meant a lasting and loving relationship was formed.  While I do feel that a connection was there, I just wish that their love wasn’t explained as mostly a reaction physical attraction and to them being “mates”.  There were several dangerous moments where they needed to rely on each other, but not enough revealing moments or interactions between them to explain why they loved each other, other than their animal attraction.

I felt that there were too many plots that made up the entire story and prevented the reader from forming an emotional attachment with any of the characters.  You had the relationship between Faith and her father.  Faith and her ex.  Becoming werewolves.  Dissension in the pack, two other minor love stories, and a murder mystery with an unknown enemy hunting the werewolves.

I wish more time would have been spent on pack dynamics and how these newly turned wolves acclimated to their new lives.  I thought it would have been more intriguing to focus on the rivalries between the two alpha females, the competition between the two alpha males for Faith as a mate, as well as the love story between Cameron and Faith.  It took me longer than normal to read this book and I think the main reason was my divided attention between all of the different sub-stories going on in this book that I wasn’t as invested in the characters to have a desire to find out what would happen next.

The mystery surrounding the murders was intriguing.  I did like Cameron and Faith as characters and wanted to learn more about them, and despite not having read any of the other books in this series I didn’t feel lost.  I think a lot of that had to do with the lack of focus on the werewolf pack aspect despite it being a paranormal romance.   In the end I  wanted more paranormal, and more romance in Legend of the White Wolf.
Ratings: 3.5 stars

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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Guest Author & Giveaway: Terry Spear featuring Legend of the White Wolf

***This giveaway has ended, but you should still read the post...it's worth your time:)
Thanks for joining the fun!***

Shapeshifters are my favorite type of paranormal romance hero.  You get the man and the beast...need I say more?  Terry Spear is my guest today to celebrate the release of her newest book in her werewolf series, LEGEND OF THE WHITE WOLF and talking about why a werewolf may be your true mate :)

 

When I first started blog tours for my werewolf series, I had some resistance to the notion that werewolves need loving, too. Vampires were fine. Why the distinction, I’m not sure. Both have wicked teeth. Both started out as horror stories. So why did vampires take the lead in sexy, and werewolves are second class citizens in the hunk department?

Now, I have to say that I first fell in love with Dracula at Brevard Community College in Florida where the sexy and suave villain captured the girl’s heart, and mine too. Believe me, I wanted to be the one standing up on the stage with him, waiting for him with such longing to bite ME! Forget the actress. *sigh*

Only all good things have to end, and poor Dracula, misunderstood as he was, had to die.

That had to change. He wasn’t bad, after all. Just…different.

Well, werewolves are just different, too.

Except I don’t remember a man who was really sexy before he turned werewolf, more of a man who fought against the horrible bone-breaking, painful order of the shift, who was a beast more than wolf, and I felt more sympathy for him because I knew he had to die in the end.

In my stories, no matter what kind of urban fantasy they are, there are good guys and bad guys. Good vampires, bad ones. Good wolves (werewolves, that is) and bad ones. Good humans and…well, you get the point. It’s not an all or none kind of world. And even the villains have some redeeming feature, just as the good guys have some darker secrets. Which makes them more real.

But I’m sliding away from the hunky part, and I did want to touch further on this. Werewolves are part wolf, so they have the pack mentality, for the most part. They love their family, cherish their mate, are totally wonderful as parents for their offspring. That’s a wolf’s nature. Inborn. They’re also great at playing, even though it often is a way for them to show who’s boss, the pecking order in the pack, and teaches the younger ones how to hunt. And when another pack member is injured, they cater to them, bring them food, help them as much as they can. When the female has her offspring, she’s totally in charge. Which is just the way it should be!

To me, it’s not just that the males are virile creatures, magnificent in their human form as well as their wolf’s, but all of the above that makes them a hunk. With a sense of playfulness, tenderness, loyalty and commitment, and of course the sexy part of the equation, that’s what makes the man worth investing in.

I believe werewolves have been getting the short end of the stick and it’s time to stand up and say, “Werewolves are people too, and they deserve some good loving!” Will you give a werewolf a hug today?

Never know when you might find your true mate! :)

Thanks so much for having me at Seductive Musings today. And if I can only convince one person to try out a werewolf for size—hmm-hmm, today, I’ve done my pack duty.



In this fourth in Spear's series, Private Eye Cameron MacPherson and Faith O'Mallery are both on quests that lead them into the world of magical wolves... 

Cameron arrives in the Canadian Arctic to search for his partners in his P.I. business who are late returning from a hunting trip. Faith is there to discover what her father had seen in the same area years earlier that had made him lose touch with reality—man-wolves, he called them. 

The two tumble into an icy world of enemies bent on destroying the lupus garou kind. As they turn into lupus garou themselves, and bond with the pack that only they can rescue from destruction, Cameron and Faith find their soul mates in each other.










A retired lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry Spear has an MBA from Monmouth College.  As an eclectic writer, she dabbles in the paranormal, historical and true life stories for both teen and adult audiences.  She is the author of Winning the Highlander’s Heart and The Vampire in My Dreams (young adult). Spear lives in Crawford, Texas.  You can find Terry at her website www.terryspear.com, Wickedly Romantic blog, Casablanca Authors blog, Fierce Romance blog, Shapeshifter Romance, and Facebook.

To celebrate the release of Legend of the White Wolf by Terry Spear Casablanca Sourcebooks romance has offered to giveaway two copies of this book.  Here's how you can enter to win...

Ways to earn entries:
  • Mandatory: Answer the question:  Which paranormal hunk is for you, Vamp or Wolf?  Me, I'm a Wolf girl!  (good for 1 entry) 
  • Mandatory:  You MUST be a Google Friend Connect (GFC) follower in order to be eligible to win (unfortunately an email subscriber, or subscription in Google reader, and a follower are not the same thing so make sure you are signed up as a follower if you'd like to win this book)
  • Blog about this author's giveaway on your blog and leave a link with your comment (good for 15 entries)
  • If you don't have a blog, don't worry you can earn extra entries by telling your friends. If they leave a comment on this post and mention that you sent them you can each earn extra entries (good for 5 entries for the referrer and the commenter for each friend) 
  • Purchase any item from the Seductive Musings Amazon store by using this link, or the Amazon widget contained within this post and email a copy of your purchase receipt to me no later than the deadline to enter (email available in sidebar). Sorry purchases made prior to this date do not apply, and link contained in this post must be used. No faxes or snail mail copies are allowed. No purchases are necessary to win. (good for 25 entries, or 50 entries if a purchase is made from the featured author's available titles)
How to enter:
  • You can choose to enter as many different ways that you want, but please place all of your entries in ONE comment
Rules and disclaimers: 
  • This contest is open to US & Canadian residents only
  • The contest will end on February 20th at 11:59 pm EST and winner will be posted after they have been selected
  • Winner will be selected using Random.org
  • The winner will have THREE days from the date they are posted to provide a mailing address. If you do not contact me within three days a replacement winner will be selected. NO EXCEPTIONS
  • The book(s) will be mailed directly from the publisher or author and no substitutions are allowed
  • Seductive Musings is not responsible for prizes that are not honored, distributed in a timely manner, lost, stolen, or damaged during transit 
  • All giveaways are subject to change/cancellation without prior written notice 

Good Luck!
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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Winners...yep I've got more :)

Wednesday, February 10

I have a ton more winners to announce!  Here they are:


One of the previous winners of Esctasy Unveiled was already lucky enough to win a copy so the replacement winner is....Wanda! 


The two winners of Melissa Mayhue's A Highlander's Destiny courtesy of Pocket books are....
  1. librarypat
  2. Amanda Leigh

The winner of the complete Darcy Saga set, including her newest My Dearest Mr. Darcy by Sharon Lathan courtesy of Casablanca Sourcebooks is...misskallie2000!


The winner of a backlist title in celebration of Beth Kery's new release Release is....Kara!

Kara, please choose between WICKED BURN, DARING TIME, SWEET RESTRAINT, or PARADISE RULES in print, or an electronic download of Beth's latest story from Samhain publishers, HOLIDAY BOUND.  Then include your choice in your email with your mailing address.

The winner of a backlist title in celebration of Jill Shalvis's newest release SLOW HEAT is...Stacy Stew!

Stacy, please take a look at Jill's backlist of titles and send me your top three picks as well as your mailing address.

The two winners of In the Warrior's Bed by Mary Wine courtesy of the author herself are...
  1. Scorpio M
  2. Mitzi H
The two winners of All Night with a Rogue courtesy of the author herself, Alexandra Hawkins are...
  1. Martha Lawson
  2. dor

Congratulations to ALL of the winners!  And thank you to everyone else who participated.  As always, you can click on any of the covers listed to purchase the books you are dying to read...even if you didn't win them.

If however,  you've been lucky enough to have already won any of these books in another giveaway please let me know so that an alternate winner can be selected.  In addition, all winners will have until Saturday 2/13 to contact me with their mailing address, otherwise alternate winners will be selected.  You can send your mailing address to me by using the link "email me" in the sidebar under "Novel Spotlight", and if you were one of the winners who need to choose a backlist title please make sure you include that in your email. 



Booklover signature (revised)

*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

Read more...
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My FREE Kindle Quest

I've wanted a Kindle for what seems like forever, but haven't been able to afford it (and that's saying something since I can justify the cost of just about ANYTHING that I really want). I've tried winning one in one of the many giveaways that have taken place over the couple of years, but with no luck :( So I've decided to take matters in hand so to speak :) I've now decided that I am going to accumulate enough Swagbucks from my Swabucks searches to buy one...so in essence my new Kindle will be FREE...funded entirely by my internet searches done on Swagbucks. I'll keep you informed of the Great Kindle Quest below (in case you're interested....if not feel free to just skip over this part, but really who wouldn't be interested in a FREE Kindle?)
Goal: $119
Current Swagbucks Amazon Gift Card balance: $90.00
If you'd like to learn how you can earn Swagbucks and earn your own Amazon Gift Cards to buy books, a Kindle or other merchandise sold at Amazon contact me and I would be more than happy to tell you how I plan to go about it. (just so you know you can earn both Amazon.com and Amazon.ca gift cards on this rewards site)
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