Tagged: Science Fiction Romance

The Game Warden’s Mate

**Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that when you click one of the links in this post and make a purchase, Thrice Read Books receives a small commission from the seller. We do not charge authors for our reviews and this does not cost you anything additional and does not impact the author’s royalties – it does allow us to continue bringing you ad-free content, and we thank you in advance for your support.**

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Jenn reviews The Game Warden’s Mate by A.M. Griffin

About the Book

The Game Warden’s Mate; AM Griffin
Adult; Space Opera Romance; 281 Pages

Three Twenty-One, LLC (April 9, 2019)

The Hunter. As the new Game Warden, Xrez Ym’ihla brings patrons from across the galaxy to track prey in a game built to enslave the weak and mate the strong. The business is a long-running family legacy and Xrez is determined to succeed as his father had before him. He hadn’t meant to let one human occupy his thoughts, mind, and body. 

His lies may come back to haunt him, but if he reveals the truth, he’ll ruin his chance to capture the heart of the one he wants. 

The Prey. Esme Valdez had her entire life planned from an early age. As a chemist, her life was average and mundane, just the way she liked it. Until the impossible happened. Never did she imagine being abducted by aliens and forced to participate in a survival of the fittest game called The Hunt. If she survives and makes it to the end, she’ll be freed. If not, she’ll be forced to mate the one who captures her.

Esme is determined to win at all costs, even if it means putting her trust in a sexy alien who taunts her in the most delectable way.
Their love was built on betrayal. Can she trust him with her heart and life?

About the Author

A. M. Griffin is a wife who rarely cooks, mother of three, dog owner (and sometimes dog owned), a daughter, sister, aunt and friend. She’s a hard worker whose two favorite outlets are reading and writing. She enjoys reading everything from mystery novels to historical romances and of course fantasy romance. She is a believer in the unbelievable, open to all possibilities from mermaids in our oceans and seas, angels in the skies and intelligent life forms in distant galaxies.
For more information please visit www.amgriffinbooks.com

Jenn’s Review

I love a good sci-fi romance. Especially when it features an intelligent, determined (if flawed) heroine who wakes up disoriented and has to gather her wits to survive an impossible situation. The Game Warden’s Mate by A.M. Griffin fit the bill.

Xrez has inherited his father’s [illegal] legacy – an arena where hunters pay good money to hunt the prey for sport. Except that the prey are other sentient beings. And they aren’t being hunted to kill. The strong are kept as prize breeding stock, and the weak are enslaved. It’s questionable at best, and not really what Xrez wanted to spend his life on. But now, that legacy is at risk because a forbidden species has found its way into his arena, thanks to a bad business deal his father made.

Esme wakes up surrounded by strangers. The entire party is dazed and disoriented. They seem to have been chosen at random, and the alien terrain around her is a far cry from her chemistry lab. She manages to keep her wits about her and teams up with a few other abductees and discovers a sort of ally with a strange, alien being who pops in now and then to give her hints about how to survive.

Xrez and Esme challenge each other as the sexual tension begins to simmer between them. Their path isn’t going to be an easy one, and last-moment twists might just tear them apart.

This was a fast-paced, gripping story that kept me turning pages. Definitely not appropriate for the under-18 crowd, but it simmers and boils over in the sexual tension department. Science fiction romance and alien romance fans, get this one on your to-be-read list!

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Jenn reviews The Game Warden’s Mate by A.M. Griffin

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Le Remède

**Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that when you click one of the links in this post and make a purchase, Thrice Read Books receives a small commission from the seller. We do not charge authors for our reviews and this does not cost you anything additional and does not impact the author’s royalties – it does allow us to continue bringing you ad-free content, and we thank you in advance for your support.**

Jenn reviews Densie Webb's contemporary vampire romance, Le Reméde - urban fantasy, contemporary romance, romance fiction
Jenn reviews Densie Webb’s contemporary vampire romance, Le Reméde

About the Book

Le Remède; Densie Webb
Adult; Science Fiction Romance; 260 Pages

The Wild Rose Press, Inc (November 7, 2018)

Andie Rogé craves control like some people crave chocolate. But she can’t control her feelings when she encounters Vincent Dubois at Lizzie Borden’s Bar. 

Tortured by blood lust that has ruled him for almost two hundred years, Vincent is unprepared for the pull he feels toward Andie. He can only surrender to what he knows is fate. 

Offered a cure from a rare black orchid, he faces an agonizing choice—take the only dose and join Andie in the human life he so deeply desires or give the cure to his Kindred brother to stop his bloody rampage. Fate brought them together but will it destroy their chance at a future?

About the Author

Le Reméde author, Densie Webb

Densie Webb has spent a long career as a freelance nonfiction writer and editor, specializing in health and nutrition, and has published several books and tons of articles on the topic over the years. She is a member of the Women’s Fiction Writers Association and SheWrites; a contributor to Women Writers, Women’s Books; and a daily “tweeter” for WriterUnboxed. Her latest novel, “Le Remède” was published by Wild Rose Press. Her debut novel, “You’ll Be Thinking of Me” was published by Soul Mate Publishing. She grew up in Louisiana, spent 13 years in New York, and settled in Austin, TX, where it’s summer nine months out of the year. She is an avid walker (not of the dead variety, though she loves anything to do with zombies, vampires or post-apocalyptic worlds), drinks too much coffee and has a small “devil dog” that keeps her on her toes. She has arrested development in musical tastes and her two children provide her with musical recommendations on a regular basis.

Jenn’s Review

Densie Webb’s paranormal romance, LE REMÉDE, is a walk on the spicy side of vampires. No sparkles here, though Ms. Webb does put her own spin on the supernatural in this charming love story.

Andie is at the end of a very long string of bad luck. She’s finally finding her feet in the Big Apple after having to lean heavily on her best friend, losing her parents, and her fiance. So when she finally meets the unbelievably beautiful mystery man from the bar, her world upends in confusion, insatiable need, and the most amazing peace she’s felt in a long time. It figures that something is wrong with him – she just didn’t guess that he was a cursed, immortal Kindred. Those only exist in the movies, right? Right?

Vincent has used his very long life learning to curb his deadly hunger and to teach his only friend how to do the same. So when an enemy from centuries past saunters into Vincent’s flower shop, offering a cure to the curse he never wanted, Vincent is doubtful, but hope springs eternal. Hope blossoms when an irresistible pull draws him toward Andie, and the only logical explanation for his attraction is a legend about fated mates – but he’s never heard of such a thing between human and Kindred.

As Andie learns to accept who and what Vincent is, Vincent’s friend loses control and spirals into a killing spree. The three must make decisions that no one should be forced to make – lover or friend? Family or the future?

This is a tastefully written, adult romance that edges towards the sweet side of the bedroom door. Le Reméde is contemporary urban fantasy, told in the first person present POV. The author’s world-building and character development are beautifully rendered, though the pacing was slow. While I enjoyed the story, I think Ms. Webb got bogged down from time to time with backstory. This is one of those authors I look forward to seeing more from in the future.

Jenn reviews Densie Webb's contemporary vampire romance, Le Reméde - urban fantasy, contemporary romance, romance fiction
Jenn reviews Densie Webb’s contemporary vampire romance, Le Reméde

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This book is available in Kindle and paperback here.

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The Renaissance Club

**Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that when you click one of the links in this post and make a purchase, Thrice Read Books receives a small commission from the seller. We do not charge authors for our reviews and this does not cost you anything additional and does not impact the author’s royalties – it does allow us to continue bringing you ad-free content, and we thank you in advance for your support.**

Jenn reviews Rachel Dacus' time travel romance, The Renaissance Club - Contemporary Romance, Time Travel, Renaissance Italy
Jenn reviews Rachel Dacus’ time travel romance, The Renaissance Club

About the Book

The Renaissance Club; Rachel Dacus
Adult; Fantasy Romance; 374 pages

Time Fold Books December 20, 2018

May Gold, an adjunct college teacher earning little more than a Starbucks barista, often dreams in her tiny, moldy office about the subject of her master’s thesis, 17th-century sculptor Gianlorenzo Bernini. In her fantasies, she’s in his arms, the wildly adored partner of the man who invented the Baroque. In reality, May has just landed in Rome with her teaching colleagues and her suffocating boyfriend, Darren, who is paying her way. She feels like a precocious failure and longs for a passionate, creative life of beauty and poetry. When tour leader George St. James lends May his beautiful gold pen to take her notes, she finds herself in the year 1624, under the gilded dome of St. Peter’s, staring into Bernini’s eyes. But can she break free of her present-day life, the dead-end job, the stuffy boyfriend, and the boss who wants to thwart her rise in the Art Department? Only if she can give up everything and figure out the secret to falling through the folds of time, might she seize her unexpected chance for happiness and live in a magical future with her soul mate from another time.

A CAPTIVATING STORY illuminating love’s power over time. Perfect for fans of and Susanna Kearsley and Diana Gabaldon, for those who love Italy, art, and history.

About the Author

Rachel Dacus is a poet, essayist, and novelist who writes about love and history. In her novel, THE RENAISSANCE CLUB, a young art historian gets to meet her hero from the past, the fiery 17th century Italian sculptor Bernini. She then must choose whether she can give up everything — even the time in which she lives — to be with her soulmate. The book was praised as “enchanting, rich, and romantic”.

Dacus is at work on both a sequel and a prequel. She shows off her versatility as a writer in her four poetry collections, most recently ARABESQUE. 

She lives in Northern California with her husband and a tiny, mighty Silky Terrier. She’s a member of the Women’s Fiction Writer’s Association and Authors18. To learn more about her news and upcoming projects, sign up for her quarterly newsletter at http://racheldacus.net. A poem in every newsletter!

Jenn’s Review

A stellar story and subtle romance! Rachel Dacus’ story weaves the past and the present together in a seamless blend of prose and poetry, with subtle undertones reminiscent of a fine Italian culinary dish in The Renaissance Club.

This was not my first time-travel romance, but Ms. Dacus is easily on par with my literary heroine, Diana Gabaldon. While the heroine travels back and forth through time, she tries to keep her present-day, dead-on-arrival, relationship with Darren together; but each trip through the portal of Time, each liason with her artistic hero, Bernini, she finds herself comparing past and present in more ways than one.

The romance between May and Bernini sizzles, and the love scenes are subtle, but pack a punch and the author moves deftly through the full range of human emotions with style and sensitivity. All the while, Dacus is describing art and Italy with a deftness that leaves even the least-experienced art historian with a clear mental image of what the characters are seeing and studying.

Her characters step in and out of time seamlessly, and it would seem that all of our intrepid travelers on this particular three-week academic tour find themselves somehow changed by the magic of Italy; its pull an irresistible dare to be something more, fly higher, try something new, inspired by the innovation in artistic styles that Rome, Venice, Florence, and Assisi seethe with. And who wouldn’t find themselves forever altered by meeting Masters of their time such as Michelangelo, Bernini and Borromini?

Even those who aren’t romance fans will find something in the pages of this book to pique their imagination. Aspiring authors, poets, painters and sculptors especially, should read at least the first three chapters, and pay special heed Bernini’s advice.

You won’t find steamy sex scenes in this book, but in this reviewer’s opinion, they would have most likely detracted from the overall impact of Rachel’s work. Readers will be left with a new appreciation of art, history, love and time itself. A must for every romance reader’s book list, especially fans of time-travel romance.

Jenn reviews Rachel Dacus' time travel romance, The Renaissance Club - Contemporary Romance, Time Travel, Renaissance Italy
Jenn reviews Rachel Dacus’ time travel romance, The Renaissance Club

Buy the Book

This book is available in Kindle and paperback here.

Thrice Read Books will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing. Please let us know all the ways you would like to hear from us:

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Tempting the Beast – Review

About the Book

Tempting the Beast, Lora Leigh Feline Breeds

Adult Paranormal Romance 314

Ellora’s Cave(September 19, 2017)

He’s a genetic experiment. The merging of human and lion DNA his creators call a Breed. And they have no idea just what kind of the creature they brought into being.

Callan Lyons wanted only to be left in peace to protect the small group of Breeds he rescued from a New Mexico lab, but those that created them refuse to stop their continued attempts to re-capture them. And the owner of a small, reputable paper, once a friend of his birth mother’s, now has proof of his existence. Proof that has caught his daughter, Merinus Tyler’s fascination and ensured her determination to find him. But once they touch, they’ll become far more than either ever imagined possible.

Man created them, but nature has made them her own. Beginning with Callan, she’ll show the world the folly of playing with the very building blocks of all she protects. And Merinus will learn the folly of tempting the beast…

About the Author

Lora Leigh lives in the rolling hills of Kentucky, often found absorbing the ambiance of this peaceful setting. She dreams in bright, vivid images of the characters intent on taking over her writing life, and fights a constant battle to put them on the hard drive of her computer before they can disappear as fast as they appeared.

Lora’s family and her writing life co-exist, if not in harmony, in relative peace with each other. Surrounded by a menagerie of pets, friends, and a teenage son who keeps her quick wit engaged, Lora’s life is filled with joys, aided by her fans whose hearts remind her daily why she writes. 

Jenn’s Review

**Note – this book is explicit erotica and is not intended for audiences under 18.**

I’ve read Lora Leigh before. Her erotica stories are almost always a terrific weekend escape, and Tempting the Beast is no exception. This is romance with super steamy sex and a dash of wickedness.

Callan Lyons is being hunted and Merinus believes her family has the answer to finally shaking off the underground, criminal organization that is responsible for the genetic engineering that produced Callan.

Callan isn’t convinced, though. He’s been on the run his whole life, trying to keep himself and his fellow Breeds out of the sick hands of sadistic scientists.

Discovering that he’s chemically and hopelessly attracted to Merinus (and she’s just as drawn to him), adds to the complications. They can’t be apart for more than a few hours, or they start experiencing nasty withdrawal symptoms.

The author does a great job of weaving Callan’s backstory into the plot, but I was a little disappointed in how little we know about what makes Merinus who she is. I learned more about her brother Kane (the hero of book 2) than I did about the heroine of this book.

That isn’t to say that the characters are shallow or uncompelling, though. Merinus is a tough little reporter who is trying desperately to prove to her family (of 7 brothers and an overbearing, newspaper tycoon dad) that she is capable of handling herself on an assignment.

Ms. Leigh liberally doses the reader with goofy puns on names, adding humor to an otherwise wild romp through an action-packed, sexy plot. This is somewhere between paranormal and science fiction, as the hero is a genetically engineered, human-lion cross. A fast-paced erotic romance should enjoy this story.

Jenn reviews paranormal romance TEMPTING THE BEAST by Lora Leigh on this edition of Thrice Read Books' review blog.

Buy the Book

Thrice Read Books has 1 paperback copy for sale

This book is available in Kindle and paperback formats from Amazon. [affiliate link]

We Are Mars – Review

About the Book:

We Are Mars: The Rubicon Saga – Part 1      By Cheryl Lawson

Publisher: Southernwood Technologies Inc.

Series: The Rubican Saga      Genre: SciFi Fantasy

Release Date: May 15, 2018

The year is 2128. 

For the people of Rubicon, Mars is Home – hostile and unforgiving – but still Home. When Rubicon is taken by surprise by an unexpected and deadly threat, it’s a race against time and a desperate fight to stay alive. 

Jax and Dana, Ridley and Chuck, Lenny and Maliyah all stand on opposite sides of a class divide, battling passions and tensions in equal measure. But can they work together to avert a disaster? Could the fundamental differences between them be the key to their survival, or to their destruction? 

To make matters worse, unsettling events on Earth put the entire Mars Mission at risk and Rubicon – with little choice left – declares its independence. The news of this is not welcomed by powerful politicians that devise dubious plans to shelve the settlement, once and for all. 

Mistakes are made, allegiances shift and lives hang in the balance. No one can be trusted as allies become enemies and the true nature of life on Mars is revealed – One wrong move, and it will be your last.

About the Author:

Cheryl Lawson lives in Kamloops, BC, Canada, with her husband and son. Cheryl grew up in South Africa, moving to Canada in 2006 when her son was just a year old. They settled in the lower mainland of BC, before moving, in 2017, to Kamloops. After a long career as a graphic designer, photographer and artist, Cheryl began pursuing writing, full-time, in 2014. She released her first non-fiction book in 2016. When she is not writing, Cheryl continues to pursue her passion for nature through her art and photography. Cheryl is a member of the Federation of BC Writers and a member of the Kamloops Arts Council. Her non-fiction book, a manifesto of her career as a creative professional, is entitled Authentic Creativity, How to Make the Most of Your Creative Intent, Strategy & Perspective. It is penned under her married name, Cheryl Bezuidenhout. We Are Mars is Cheryl’s first fiction novel.

Brian’s Review:

 As a person who would love to be a Mars Colonist, We Are Mars, is a great starter book for Cheryl.  The book moves pretty fast, and has enough entertainment to keep me interested. There are a few questions I have about some of the things that take place, but they aren’t hard to over look for the entertainment of the story.  Again for a first novel, the writing was pretty good and I am anxiously awaiting book two. Cheryl really hits home with her descriptions of life on Mars and the struggles that would come with it. The “Red Planet” never read so good, as far as I have read.  Recommend this book for anyone who looks at the stars and wonders.

Brian reviews Cheryl Lawson's debut science fiction novel "We Are Mars" on the Thrice Read Books blog

Sam’s Review: 

We are Mars by Cheryl Lawson was okay. It bounced from person to person, but it’s still worth reading. The book is a science fiction, for those who are wondering.

Mars has been claimed by the human race for science. However, the precious water from the dry planet has been poisoned, causing an outbreak that kills many. The heroes (and heroine) learn that they are not the only humans on Mars.

We are Mars is perfect for people who don’t mind sudden changes of point of view.  It was still good, though. I liked the characters, and the plot twists, though I don’t like the cliffhanger.

Sam adds her thoughts to the review blog for Cheryl Lawson's WE ARE MARS, book 1 in the Rubicon Saga, on the Thrice Read Books blog

Buy this book:

This book is available from Amazon in Kindle and Paperback editions here. [affiliate link]

The Princess of Tyrone – Review

About the Book:

Apolline is happy hunting magical creatures on her pirate infested outer-perimeter planet. She is a fantastic shot, and doesn’t flinch at the blood and guts of her kills. Never once did she consider she could be the missing Princess of Tyrone. All her life, she has heard the story of the Princess, cursed to sleep for eternity, unless her betrothed, the Prince of Oran, gave her true love’s kiss.

Although Apolline knows she is betrothed, she thinks her fairy guardians arranged it out of ignorance of human ways. The thought she could be a princess is inconceivable. Then Allard appears. Handsome, charming-but he’s not hers to have. He’s betrothed, too. Her guardians warn her against her new found friendship, but she and Allard meet in secret anyway. Despite her rough exterior, he sees beyond her gun-slinging bravado, and their love blossoms. But the deadline for the sleeping curse is approaching. If Apolline falls in love with the wrong person, she could end up sleeping forever. A quirky, adventurous retelling of Sleeping Beauty, with a less than princess-ly princess!

About the Author:

Born and raised in Australia, Katie’s early years of day dreaming in the “bush”, and having her father tell her wild bedtime stories, inspired her passion for writing.

After graduating High School, she became a foreign exchange student where she met a young man who several years later she married. Now she lives in Arizona with her husband, daughter and their dog.

She has a diploma in travel and tourism which helps inspire her writing.
When her debut novel, Kiya: Hope of the Pharaoh, climbed into bestselling status, she believed she was onto something, and now has a slew of novels now available, and is published through Curiosity Quills Press, Soul Mate Publishing, and REUTS Publishing.

Katie loves to out sing her friends and family, play sports, and be a good wife and mother. She now works as an Acquisitions Editor to help support her family. She loves to write, and takes the few spare moments in her day to work on her novels.

Jenn’s Review:

Young Adult, Science Fiction and Fairy Tales. What could possibly go wrong? The potential for this to be a dull, rehashed fairy tale story is huge here.

Katie Hamstead’s Princess of Tyrone is the first in a series of YA science fiction novels that are based on the old fairy tales most of us have grown up with. A little twisted, but certainly recognizable.

And book 1 was a fabulous read! The story is well told, the heroine is spunky and snarky (my favorite kind!), and the parallels to the old Grimm tales are hard to miss.

Then, we have the star-crossed lovers. Well, they think they are ill-fated, but a fairy godmother is looking out for Apolline and Allard. Even the antagonist, Bryanna has a voice in the story, and for my part, I’d say she’s pitiable, because even when it’s pointed out to her that her situation is the consequence of her own decisions, she insists on blaming others for her plight. Reminds me of a number of people in my own life.

Ms. Hamstead has woven a beautiful world with fun characters and a twisty plot that kept me cheering for the protagonists, even when they insisted on remaining oblivious to the obvious.

This is easily a YA novel that can be read by middle graders. They might find the kissy moments near the end.. well.. mushy. The language and content, however, are clean. Easily a four-star read.

Sam’s Review: 

So, I loved how it told the tale of Sleeping Beauty in another way, whereas the princess (Apolline is the name she grew up with, and that’s the name I’m calling her) is a bright, courageous, and spunky huntress who has fallen for a guy whom she doesn’t know is her betrothed.

Of course two of the three fairies that are raising her hate the idea, yada, yada, yada. But that’s not the point here! I’m getting off track, which I have a tendency to do. Anyways, I, well, can’t find anything about the book that I didn’t like. That’s a new one for me.

Buy the Book:

This book is available from Amazon in paperback and Kindle format here. [affiliate link]

Other books in this series:

Myths of Mish (Hansel and Gretel)

The Dwarves of Calcus (Snow White)

Myths of Mish – Book Review

About the book:

Hansel and Gretel Herrscher survived the witch in the woods, but the experience has made Hansel paranoid for the past ten years. He sees dark magic at every turn. When Gretel has a marriage arranged to a much older man, and Hansel discovers he’s about to be sent halfway across the galaxy, he knows something sinister is afoot.

Wilhelmine Nordon has plenty of experience with Hansel’s quirkier side. So when she catches him and Gretel running away in the middle of the night, she follows to keep them from getting killed. The siblings have never left the capital of Mish on their own, so they need a babysitter. Except when she’s discovered, Hansel gives her his usual cold shoulder, and Gretel secretly begs her to take them back.

The problem is, Hansel’s paranoia turns out to be well founded, and they’re all being hunted.

About the Author:

Born and raised in Australia, Katie’s early years of day dreaming in the “bush,” and having her father tell her wild bedtime stories, inspired her passion for writing. After graduating High School, she became a foreign exchange student where she met a young man who several years later she married. Now she lives in Arizona with her husband, daughter, and their dog. She has a diploma in travel and tourism which helps inspire her writing. She is currently at school studying English and Creative Writing. Katie loves to out sing her friends and family, play sports and be a good wife and mother. She loves to write, and takes the few spare moments in her day to work on her novels.

Jenn’s Review:

Myths wasn’t as good as Princess of Tyrone. 

Yeah, I know I don’t start reviews out like that, but it’s the honest truth. Not that Myths was a bad book; but the hero, Hansel, is a little over the top with the paranoia and his abusive treatment of Minna through almost 3/4 of the story.

And Minna falls in love with him anyway (before he stops acting like an a-hole).

The plot itself is fast paced, and while I could see the plot twists coming, I didn’t accurately predict where they were headed until each was upon me. Gretel tries desperately to play matchmaker between Hansel and Minna (again, why? He’s an absolute jerk to Minna – why would you try to hook your best friend up with someone who treats her like trash?).

Perhaps my issue with the relationship between hero and heroine in this story is my age. This is, of course, a YA sci fi romance, and here I am at 41, a survivor of abuse, trying to wrap my head around a young woman falling in love with an abusive male. Yes, Hansel mostly outgrows his perpetual jerkdom by the end of the book. The evil antagonist is vanguished, everyone gets married and has a happy-ever-after (Gretel meets someone on their adventure… if I tell you more, I’d have to put spoiler alerts all over this post!).

Sam’s reading this book, as well, and I should be adding her review in the near future. My final verdict, though? Mixed review, 3 stars. Great plot and character development; had a hard time accepting the love-the-abuser thing.

Sam’s Review:

Katie Hamstead is back with Myths of Mish, the prequel to Princess of Tyrone. While Princess of Tyrone told the story of Sleeping Beauty, Myths of Mish explained what happened to Hansel and Gretel after they defeated the witch, only with a interstellar twist. This book, along with the other books in the series, is for young adult audiences.

Even though it’s a prequel, the story blends right in to Princess of Tyrone.  I can almost see it happening while Apolline and the rest of the gang from the first book are doing their thing, while at the same time, I know that this is a prequel.

I loved how the characters’ personalities were well defined, and the places were well made. Filled with humor and tension where and when they were needed, I felt like I was part of the action.

Buy the Books:

This book is available in Kindle and paperback editions from Amazon here. [affiliate link]

Other Books in the series:

Princess of Tyrone

Dwarves of Calcus

Dwarves of Calcus – Review

About the Book:

When she was thirteen, Snow Sabbia crash landed on the dwarves’ home planet of Calcus. After fleeing from her step-mother’s huntsman, seven brother dwarves took her in to hide and protect her. She has hidden for years on the peaceful planet, tinkering with old automobiles and pushing papers in the mine office.

Then, Timothy White shows up.

The shy, nervous, nerdy heir captivates Snow before she even knows who he is, and quickly she falls in love. But his high profile in society draws unwanted attention from her vengeful stepmother, who wants Snow dead.

Geneva believed Snow died years earlier and she had consumed her innocent heart. With her late husband’s wealth, Snow’s inheritance, in tow, she married a young lord, Conrad. Both are using each other—Geneva for his title and to have a child, Conrad for her money and beauty. But when Conrad lays eyes on his boyhood rival’s lovely fiance, Snow, his overwhelming desire for her reveals the truth to Geneva, that Snow lives.

Desperate to hold onto her wealth and power, Geneva seeks to kill Snow properly this time. Snow has the power to wield the one thing that can destroy her, so she cannot let the girl claim possession of the family heirloom, the Nevollo Sword.

Snow soon learns her step-mother knows she is alive. But she is a pacifist, so she must outwit Geneva and remain hidden… until Geneva, disguised as a child, presents her with an apple.

About the Author:

Born and raised in Australia, Katie’s early years of day dreaming in the “bush”, and having her father tell her wild bedtime stories, inspired her passion for writing.

After graduating High School, she became a foreign exchange student where she met a young man who several years later she married. Now she lives in Arizona with her husband, daughter and their dog.

She has a diploma in travel and tourism which helps inspire her writing.
When her debut novel, Kiya: Hope of the Pharaoh, climbed into bestselling status, she believed she was onto something, and now has a slew of novels now available, and is published through Curiosity Quills Press, Soul Mate Publishing, and REUTS Publishing.

Katie loves to out sing her friends and family, play sports, and be a good wife and mother. She now works as an Acquisitions Editor to help support her family. She loves to write, and takes the few spare moments in her day to work on her novels.

Jenn’s Review:

Snow White has been one of my favorite fairy tales for as long as I can remember. In the third installment of Katie Hamstead’s Fairy Tale Galaxy series, we get a fresh retelling (that’s only been hinted at in the first two books), of the Snow White story.

As you probably know by now, book 2 in this series wasn’t a big fav of mine, however, book 3, Ms. Hamstead is back in business with wit, likable characters (minus the villianous Geneva, of course), and a fast-paced plot. 

I remember being young and awkward, especially in the social department – I could relate easily to both main characters. Snow is a capable, strong young woman, even if she has no grace when it comes to social situations (she’s grown up with dwarves, and NO humans), and Timothy isn’t the brave, dashing prince we’re used to seeing in this story – he’s a nerd and utterly socially inept (lest you believe he’s just a bumbling idiot, he’s not – the source of his social insecurity is laid out by the end of the book), but Snow is able to draw him out of his shell. And just when everything seems to be going well for them… Poof! Something comes up to keep them apart. Reminds me a bit of my own high school sweetheart (whom I eventually married, despite our own delays).

In the final analysis: Dwarves of Calcus is a winner in my book. Strong characters, well-defined conflicts and plot, and villains vanquished. 

And since I enjoyed two of the three books in the series, and Ms. Hamstead has plenty of other material she can work with (other potential plots are hinted at throughout the series as it stands now), I’m hoping to see more of this series in the future.

Sam’s Review:

Telling the story of Snow White this time, Dwarves of Calcus explains the peace between Oran and Tyrone. See, Oran and Tyrone weren’t always allies. They were enemies at one point. But when Snow Sabbia meets Timothy White, it’s love at first sight. Now long after, about a couple of weeks or so, they’re engaged. Talk about moving quickly.

But Snow and Timothy (let’s just call him Timmy.) have one person in the way: Snow’s siren of a stepmother, Geneva. Literally, she’s a siren. Snow and Timmy get married, and Geneva gives Snow a poisoned apple. The rest of the story that you are familiar with takes over, moving this fascinating story along its tracks.

With twists and turns at almost every angle, a nerdy prince charming, and seven funny dwarves, Dwarves of Calcus is fun to and easy to read. Its for young adult audiences, and is the third book in a series.

Buy the book:

This book is available in Kindle format from Amazon here. [affiliate link]

Other Books in the series:

Princess of Tyrone

Myths of Mish

To Discover a Divine – New Release Review

new Release banner - To Discover a Divine

About the book:

By Tessa McFionn     Rise of the Stria Book 1

Fiery Seas Publishing     March 20, 2018

Sci-Fi Romance

When Kahlym cal Jhuen, freedom-fighting leader of the Chandar Stria, breaks into a prison ship controlled by the Rimmarian Thrall, he only expected to rescue two of his crew. But when he discovers a terrified female during his escape, he is immediately captivated by her unique beauty and makes a snap decision to take her with him. However, his good deed backfires when he learns he has stolen the Thrall Emperor’s prize.

Down to her last dollar, Evainne Wagner expected nothing out of the ordinary when she stepped out of her Boston apartment. Instead, she found herself in the middle of an intergalactic firefight, complete with strange soldiers with deadly weapons pointed directly at her. Salvation arrives in the nick of time in the form of a mysterious leather-clad warrior, skidding in and whisking her away. Trusting her heart, she follows, hoping to find answers as well as a way home.

Safely on board his ship, he learns more about her and her rare skills, triggering the memory of a half-forgotten prophecy spoken at the time of his cursed birth. Outcast because of a cruel twist of fate, he finds unexpected acceptance, even affection, from his new passenger.

Could she be the one who holds the future of his people, as well as his own heart, in her tender hands?

Buy Links:

Amazon     Kobo     Barnes & Noble     iTunes

About the author:

Tessa McFionn is a very native Californian and has called Southern California home for most of her life, growing up in San Diego and attending college in Northern California and Orange County, only to return to San Diego to work as a teacher. Insatiably curious and imaginative, she loves to learn and discover, making her wicked knowledge of trivial facts an unwelcomed guest at many Trivial Pursuit boards. 

When not writing, she can be found at the movies or at Disneyland with her husband, as well as family, friends or anyone who wants to play at the Happiest Place on Earth. She also finds her artistic soul fed through her passions for theatre, dance and music.

A proud parent of far too many high school seniors and two still living house plants, she also enjoys hockey, reading and playing Words With Friends to keep her vocabulary sharp. She is currently the treasurer of the San Diego chapter of Romance Writers of America and loves spending time working with such amazingly intelligent and creative writers.

Social Media: 

Facebook     Twitter      Website      Blog

Jenn’s Review:

Holy guacamole, Batman! Tessa McFionne smashed her debut novel out of the park. You might already know that I’m a huge fan of Science Fiction Romance, and I’ve been looking forward to reading this book since we did the cover reveal back in December.

I was not disappointed.

The book kicks off with a hefty dose of WTF, as the hero, Khallym tries to figure out why a woman, a civilian woman of all things, is in the middle of his planned jail break.

The woman in question? Yeah, she’s having a mighty big WTF moment, too.

Khallum has a lot on his plate already – the rejected, disowned son of a ruling family, he’s taken to working with the Rebellion to knock an emperor off the throne. And now, he owes a life-debt to a female; an utterly foreign concept to his ship full of battle hardened soldiers.

Evainne, for her part, is utterly lost. She woke up in Boston, went through her normal morning routine, and stepped out her front door for her morning run – and found herself in the middle of a battle zone. Something, somewhere, went horribly wrong.

Evainne and Khallum have to bridge their communication and cultural gaps as they try to unravel the mystery of her appearance on the other side of the universe, and as they do, Khallum’s initial duty to protect her  morphs into something deeper.

To Discover a Divine is a fast paced, action packed, steamy adventure. Ms. McFionne focuses more on the mysteries surrounding Evianne’s sudden appearance than she does on the developing relationship, but the quick plot pace and intense attraction between hero and heroine more than makes up for that. 

I will venture a guess (and will confirm this in my interview with Tessa), that this is book one of a series. Khallym and Evianne don’t exactly get a happy ever after in this book, and the ending definitely left me hungry for more of these two.

Check out our author interview in a recent edition of Between the Pages.

Won by an Alien – Book Review

About the book:

I was abducted by aliens.
The aliens that I’ve been auctioned to don’t speak my language, and I definitely can’t speak theirs. 
I didn’t expect to get married by accident to the sweet one.
I didn’t expect to have a grumpy alien bond to me, and go a little crazy if other males get near me, or if I try to leave.
It doesn’t matter if they’ve won my heart.
I can’t stay.
Somehow, I have to explain that I NEED to go home. Because the bad aliens that abducted me?
They took me from my babies.

**Note: 
For those of you that prefer not to be surprised, there are TWO heroes in this story. It is a Happily Ever After with three people, a mini Reverse Harem set up of MFM (male/female/male) that doesn’t quite classify as Menage… and you’ll find out why. ♥
For those of you who DO prefer to be surprised… pretend you didn’t read this warning! 😉

This is Tara’s Story. It technically *can* be read as a stand-alone, however, previous books in the series set up events in this book. (From Amazon’s product description)

Jenn’s Review:

Unlike book 2 in Amanda Milo’s “Alien Mates” series, this book can be read out of order. However, I wouldn’t recommend it. While certain events are glossed over in book 3, book 1 (Stolen by an Alien) lays them out very clearly, and book 3 (Won by an Alien) fills in small gaps that are left in books 1 and 2.

Told in first person, from three angles, Won by an Alien includes the extensive communication and cultural issues facing three different species (four if you count Lem, who isn’t a part of the love story here, but is still a key element). I spent well over 3/4 of the book laughing so hard I was wheezing. 

Won by an Alien isn’t nearly as dark as book 2, Rescued by an Alien, and rightfully so. However, as a mother, it’s not difficult to sympathize with Tara, a mother who’s been ripped away from her young twins. To wake up on an entirely different planet, unable to communicate with the beings that saved you… Yeah. I’d be freaking out, too.

The heroes of this story are as different as night and day. One is a species that is featured in books 1 and 2 – generally surly, but Brax has a whole other level of conflict going on from the first two (who only had to worry about being executed for bonding with the wrong species). Tac’Mot, on the other hand, is easy going and kind to Tara and becomes her anchor as she tries to adjust to her new and very scary surroundings.

Again, Ms. Milo’s love scenes are hot, hot, hot. And imaginative! Nothing mundane exists with her male characters, and they most certainly are not human. Her human heroines have quite the time adjusting (sometimes literally) to the differences between themselves and their alien lovers – sometimes to a hilarious extent, especially as the women begin to realize that they are the aliens in the situation, not the males, who are very accustomed to various species and cultural interactions.

Verdict on the series:

If you enjoy science fiction romance or unusual combinations in romance plots, Amanda Milo’s “Alien Mates” series is worth the reading. Not to mention, she’s included several pages of her own reading recommendations at the back of book 3. What romance enthusiast wouldn’t be all over that? Take the time to read this series, starting at book one. As Sam would say, “I give it 5 stars and 2 thumbs up!”

This series is only available in Kindle format for now. I’ve spoken to Ms. Milo, and it sounds like she’s looking to start offering these in print in the (hopefully) near future. 

You can buy on Amazon (affiliate links):

Book 1: Stolen by an Alien     Book 2: Rescued by an Alien     Book 3: Won by an Alien