Monday, August 30, 2010

September-mas! So many great releases this month it's Christmas in September!

via crooked house
There's so many great releases this month that I am giddy with excitement as I eye the new releases list though my credit card is quacking with fear of being repeatedly used and abused all month - it's not used to this kind of work out. First I want to point out my favorite early book gift to myself this September-mas season and that is Sin Undone by Larissa Ione. I love the Demonica series - I reviewed all 4 previous books at Darkly Reading and had a couple giveaways of her books when Ecstasy Unveiled came out (my first giveaways ever). The author, Ms. Ione, is a sweetheart and left nice comments on all my reviews and then afterward asked for my full name to put it in the acknowledgments for Sin Undone. And guess what - when I picked up my copy of Sin Undone and turned to the acknowledgments - there was my name listed with some other great blogging ladies and readers. I was grinning from ear-to-ear of course and had to resisted the urge to grab complete strangers at the bookstore and point to my name and say  "hey look that's me that's me!" though when I had a few friends over later I did grin ear-to-ear and point out my name - couldn't help it! So I wanted to say a big thank you to Larissa Ione for putting my name in her book! I plan on snuggling up with Sin and Con from Sin Undone this holiday weekend - it's always bittersweet to read the last book in a series but I'm looking forward to reading Sin and Con's story! And then we have the Lords of Deliverance series based in the same world coming out starting in March of 2011 so I don't have to completely go demon-loving cold turkey.
Me at Hachette booth at BEA
Now that we got my early September-mas gift out of they way I wanted to point out some other releases I'm super excited for (All Things Urban Fantasy and Wicked Lil' Pixie also have great new releases lists)-

August 31st/September 1st
Blameless by (Parasol Protectorate #3) Gail Garriger
Married with Zombies (Living with the Dead #1) by Jesse Petersen
The Darkest Edge of Dawn (Charlie Madigan #2) by Kelly Gay

September 7th
Assassin's Heart (Order of the Sicari #2) by Monica Burns
Cruel Enchantment (Dark Magick #2) by Anya Blast
Healer's Choice (Ghostland Worlds #3) by Jory Strong
No Mercy (Dark-Hunter #13) by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Warrior (The Blades of the Rose #1) by Zoe Archer
An Artificial Night (October Daye #3) by Seanan McGuire

September 9th
Cold Magic by Kate Elliot

September 28th
Bayou Moon (The Edge #2) by Ilona Andrews
Double Cross (The Disillusionists #2) by Carolyn Crane
A Midwinter Fantasy by Leanna Renee Hieber, L.J McDonald, Helen Scott Taylor

Many of these releases are books in series I love and have been waiting patiently (or not so much) for the next in the series to arrive. There are so many good books in this list I am bouncing up and down with anticipation (poor hubby!). One of these books - No Mercy by Sherilyn Kenyon - is a recent addition to the list. I read the first book in her Dark-Hunter series - Night Pleasures - over the weekend because it was on sale in the Kindle store for $2.99. So if you've been thinking about starting the series now is a great time to start (though in my copy there were some weird typo's - maybe that's why it was on sale ;).

Now onto the gifts of September-mas - Blogfest! This September 10-12 Darkly Reading is taking part in BlogFest - where a bunch of blogs get together and coordinate giveaways. You can check out the list of participating blogs here - it looks like close to 100 blogs or more are participating and giving away some great gifts. I'm going to be giving away 2 books from my list of favorite releases above so stay tuned to find out which books. I also will be giving away some ARCs from my shelves later this month so stay tuned for that as well!

So what releases are you excited for this month?

Friday, August 27, 2010

Review of Touched by an Alien by Gini Koch - Love in a Elevator baby!

Title: Touched by an Alien (Katherine "Kitty" Katt, #1)
Author: Gini Koch
Pages: 389 pages, paperback
Genre: Science Fiction Romance
Standalone/Series: Series (#1)
Release: April 2010
Publisher: DAW
Purchased by me
Author info:
Spoiler Alert: Minor plot spoilers
GoodReads Blurb: Marketing manager Katherine "Kitty" Katt steps into the middle of what appears to be a domestic dispute turned ugly. And it only gets uglier when the man turns into a winged monster, straight out of a grade-Z horror movie, and goes on a killing spree. Though Kitty should probably run away, she springs into action to take the monster down.

In the middle of the chaos a handsome hunk named Jeff Martini appears, sent by the "agency" to perform crowd control. He's Kitty's kind of guy, no matter what planet he's from. And from now on, for Kitty, things are going to be sexy, dangerous, wild, and out of this world.

Surprisingly I've never read a book before that has aliens taking the center stage much less being romantic leads. I've read about vampires -sparkly and otherwise, werewolves, weresnakes, witches, demons, zombies, and the list could go on but no aliens from another planet. Perhaps I was a little worried to try out a new genre - aliens can be scary you know with the alien abductions, aliens bursting from chests a la the Alien movie and Spaceballs, and we know they might already be here with Area 51. So I wasn't sure what to expect with Touched by an Alien. Thankfully there was no need for alarm since the alien good guys looked like super models and the story that Ms. Koch wrote was humorous, entertaining, and had some excellent rock song references in it.

Kitty gets thrown into the saving the world business which she stops what looks like an angry husband turned monster from destroying the Pueblo Caliente courthouse. Soon she gets approached by sexy men in Armani suits that want to recruit her to their organization, she starts receiving marriage proposals, and learns that her Mom could definitely kick her ass. Kitty takes all these revelations in stride and doles out her own brand of sarcasm and wit that keeps the book entertaining throughout.

I loved the tongue-in-check approach to aliens in this books - all the good aliens were super model sexy and the women aliens were all scientists that were attracted more to mental attributes (think Stephen Hawking) than the package it came in, even if the women were surrounded by Brad Pitt look a-likes. Although the aliens are easy on the eyes, it turns out that they have a convoluted back story as to why they ended up on Earth and what their connection is to the bad aliens that seem to be able to turn regular humans into monsters. As Kitty tries to get to the bottom of what is going on she has an excellent distraction from the new dangers in her life in the form of Jeff Martini - who proclaims his intentions to marry Kitty and have lots of babies within minutes of meeting her. The action in this book is fast-paced - the entire book only covers a few days in Kitty's life but it is filled with excellent interactions between Kitty and Jeff and some great patented glares from Jeff's main romantic rival Christopher. Add in some Aerosmith, a few hot and heavy elevator scenes, and some alien ass kicking and overall you have a great book.

5 out of 5 stars for me, a unique sci-fi romance that will have you head banging to the soundtrack.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Why my reading habits are like a Journey song

Lately I have been working alot, reading alot, and blogging not at all (opps), I feel like my reading habits are like Journey's "Don't Stop Believin' " song just substituting the "Believin'" for "Readin'" and you got the same song stuck in your head now too. Just imagine me jammin' away my hair all teased up and playing air guitar with some awesome books and you've got the full picture - I know pretty lame but sometimes you got to call them like you imagine them at least.

Since my last book review I've read about 16 books:

Re-read the Aisling Grey by series (you can read about my reason's why you should read the series here)
Love in the Time of Dragons by Katie MacAlister (can't get enough of the demon Jim)
Eternal Kiss of Darkness by Jeaniene Frost (Yummy Mencheres)
Touched by an Alien by Gini Koch (Loved this book and the use of rock and roll and elevators)
A Girls Guide to Vampires and Sex and the Single Vampire (Dark Ones books 1&2) by Katie MacAlister - I didn't love these ones as much as I did the dragon's books - maybe cause the vampires in these books weren't as growly as her dragon book men.
Cruel Enchantment by Anya Bast - Loved this book! Review coming soon!
Twice Bitten by Chloe Neill- Oh Ethan how you make me melt and make me angry within a few pages!
Eternal Hunter by Cynthia Eden- Ohh - White Tiger shifter!
Demon Night by Meljean Brook - Hmm bad boy Guardian - ahh yes!
Healer's Choice by Jory Strong - Post-apocalyptic paranormal romance - quite a mouthful!
Demon Moon by Meljean Brook - Vampire so beautiful he mesmerizes other vampires - yes please!
Ecstasy by Jacquelyn Frank- I think the title pretty much covers it!

I plan on posting reviews for some of the books soon! So when your life gets busy what do you find suffering the most - your reading, review posting, laundry pile, video game addiction, etc.?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Mmmh..more medicine please..and dragon shifters..the Aisling Grey series by Katie MacAlister

I find when I get really stressed out, like I have been alot lately, I tend to medicate myself with some of my favorite reads. One of those favorites is the Aisling Grey series by Katie MacAlister. I first read this series when I was still coming to terms with the fact that yes I read romance and man do I love it. Though with my romance there has to be the bad boy alpha male, a bit of action, and some smoking hot love scenes. For me, the Aisling Grey series has to be hands down it one of the best combinations of urban fantasy, humor, and romance - not an easy combination to achieve. The heroine of the series, Aisling, is kind of a mess though she tries to pretend she is professional and in control. Unfortunately for Aisling from the first book of the series (and there are four total) she is kind of like Alice falling down the rabbit hole as she gets further ensnared in the paranormal world she was abruptly introduced to. Thankfully her introduction to the paranormal world is by Drake Vireo - dragon shifter, alpha, and bad boy all rolled into one who I think probably looks a bit like Jared Prudoff (I included a pic for your viewing pleasure). Although Aisling and Drake's relationship is fiery from the start there is alot of passion there which makes it very entertaining to read about - Drake is used to bossing women around and Aisling is not standing for it so their constant struggles with each others nature make for an entertaining read.

What makes the series even better Aisling's sidekick - a demon in dog form known as Jim. He loves his canine Newfie form, has to wear drool bibs (oh man am I happy my dog doesn't drool that much), and is in love with a Welsh corgi named Cecile (he likes to suck on her ears- eww!). He really sets the tone for his comedic sidekick status when he discovers the amazing things a dog can do (from You Slay Me).

"Give me a couple of minutes. You're not going to believe what I found I can do," Jim said, its voice muffled as it engaged in a bit of groinal hygiene.
"The eww factor on that is borderline vomit territory," I (Aisling) said, tugging on its leash until the great furry black head emerged from the depths of its crotch. I ignored the glazed look in Jim's eyes and got to my feet, heading out of the park and toward the nearest Metro stop. "Come on, you'll like the Merto. As a dog, you've got carte blanche to smell strangers' crotches."
"Really? That's something, although not nearly as good as licking my own-" Jim

To round out Aisling's inner group of friends is Rene the cab driver who teaches her some interesting French phrases like: "J'ai une grenouille dans mon bidet" (I have a frog in my bidet) for when Aisling needs help, and "Tu as une tete a faire sauter les plaques des egouts" (You have a face that would blow off the cover of a manhole) for when a man hits on her when she doesn't want him to.

Overall these books have me laughing out loud, on the edge of my seat waiting to find out what happens next, and makes my ereader steam up at the sex scenes so if you haven't read this series yet I highly recommend it!

You can find more about Katie MacAlister's books here:

So do you have any books or series you like to "medicate" with when you've been having a rough week? Do you go for the more humorous/sexy/action-packed books or a combination of all three?

Monday, August 9, 2010

I'm Back! Announcing some winners!

So I took a work trip for a professional development seminar (which was surprisingly really awesome)/ visit with the family in Michigan and I ended up not posting for a few weeks. I counted on being off for a week of blogging but didn't factor in the week of preparation before I went and the week to catch up with work after I got back. Oppsie! I will blame it on being a kinda newbie blogger - I can still use that excuse right *bats eyelashes and smiles innocently*! I have a few winners to announce as well as a welcome back to Darkly Reading..sorry it's been so quiet!

Onto the winners - who will also get get lovely e-mails in their boxes as well!

Books and Bane wins these two lovely books by Sean Cummings!

Christine wins a copy of one of my favorite reads this summer - Siren!