Tag Archives: urban fantasy

Mad Lizard Mambo (The Kai Gracen Series #2)

Author: Rhys Ford

Publisher: DSP Publications

Rating: 5 stars

Buy Links: DSPP & Amazon

Type: Novel in a Series

Received from Publisher

 

Blurb:  Kai Gracen has no intention of being anyone’s pawn. A pity Fate and SoCalGov have a different opinion on the matter.

Licensed Stalkers make their living hunting down monsters and dangerous criminals… and their lives are usually brief, brutal, and thankless. Despite being elfin and cursed with a nearly immortal lifespan, Kai didn’t expect to be any different. Then Ryder, the High Lord of the Southern Rise Court, arrived in San Diego, and Kai’s not-so-mundane life went from mild mayhem to full-throttle chaos.

Now an official liaison between the growing Sidhe Court and the human populace, Kai is at Ryder’s beck and call for anything a High Lord might need a Stalker to do. Unfortunately for Kai, this means chasing down a flimsy rumor about an ancient lost Court somewhere in the Nevada desert—a court with powerful magics that might save Ryder’s—and Kai’s—people from becoming a bloody memory in their Merged world’s violent history.

The race for the elfin people’s salvation opens unwelcome windows into Kai’s murky past, and it could also slam the door on any future he might have with his own kind and Ryder. Continue reading Mad Lizard Mambo (The Kai Gracen Series #2)

Shadow Falling (Scorpius Syndrome #2)

shadow fallingAuthor: Rebecca Zanetti

Publisher: Kensington Books

Rating: 4.5 stars

Buy Links: Amazon

Type: Novel in Series

Provided by Publisher

 

Blurb: Before the Scorpius Syndrome tore through North America and nearly wiped out the population, Vivienne Wellington was the FBI’s best profiler. The bacteria got her anyway. But she survived. She recovered. And when she woke up from a drug-nightmare of captivity, her trust in her fellow man had gone from shaky at best to nonexistent. Her mysterious rescuer wants to convince her he’s the exception. But no matter how tempting he is, with his angel’s eyes and devil’s tongue, Vinnie knows she shouldn’t trust him.

If the FBI were still around they would rate Raze Shadow as one of the bad guys. His military training can’t wipe out his association with the Mercenaries, the most feared gang in a thousand miles. His loyalties are compromised. He won’t even tell Vinnie his real name. But there’s no FBI in the new America of fear and firepower, only instinct and risk. And the way his arms wrap around her tells its own story. Whatever else Raze is concealing, he can’t hide his desire . . . Continue reading Shadow Falling (Scorpius Syndrome #2)

Derivation (Aberrant Magic #2)

Author: Lyn Gala

Publisher: Loose Id

Rating: 4 stars

Buy Links: LId & Amazon

Type: Novel

Purchased by Reviewer

 

Blurb:  Darren and Kavon have committed to each other, but magical rules are changing and that tests the strength of their bond. The death of a prominent Egyptian shaman and the shadowy remains of O’Brien’s conspiracy to kill adepts and steal their magic also pressure the new couple. Kavon is determined to protect his partner through these storms, but he is also painfully aware of his own tendency to hover. And as Darren is quick to point out, he is an armed federal agent who won’t allow Kavon to keep him off the front lines.

Making the relationship even more difficult, the spirit guides who offered their loyalty have their own hopes and needs. The world is changing, and Darren’s spirit guide pushes them to find the right path to navigate. However, Kavon has never enjoyed being pressured, and he is particularly uncomfortable walking into a situation he doesn’t understand. Worse, the longer he knows Darren and his guide, the more confused Kavon becomes about how magic even works. The two men must pull together or the forces moving in the shadows threaten to destroy them before they have any chance at happiness. Continue reading Derivation (Aberrant Magic #2)

This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity)

Author:  Victoria Schwab

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Rating: 4.5 stars

Buy links: Amazon

Type: Novel in Series

Provided by Publisher

 

Blurb: There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from acclaimed author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books, This Savage Song is a must-have for fans of Holly Black, Maggie Stiefvater, and Laini Taylor.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives. 

In This Savage Song, Victoria Schwab creates a gritty, seething metropolis, one worthy of being compared to Gotham and to the four versions of London in her critically acclaimed fantasy for adults, A Darker Shade of Magic. Her heroes will face monsters intent on destroying them from every side—including the monsters within. Continue reading This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity)

Unwanted (Elemental Assassin #14.5)

unwantedAuthor: Jennifer Estep

Publisher: Gallery

Rating: 4.5 stars

Buy Links: Amazon

Type: Novella in Series

Provided by Publisher

 

Blurb: The New York Times bestselling Elemental Assassin series continues with a new e-novella–from the point of view of Finnegan Lane, the foster brother of Gin Blanco, and a fan favorite of readers of the series.

The fallout from his disastrous “family reunion” in Bitter Bite has left Finn feeling hurt, angry, and depressed. He can barely stand to look at himself in the mirror, much less eat any of the delicious barbecue from Gin’s famed Pork Pit restaurant.

But when the funeral for a slain security guard at his bank turns into a showdown with some nasty underworld giants, Finn knows that he must act in order to protect an innocent family.

Finnegan Lane might be the most unwanted man in Ashland these days, but he’s determined to try to make amends for his past mistakes. Continue reading Unwanted (Elemental Assassin #14.5)

Deductions (Aberrant Magic #1)

Author: Lyn Gala

Publisher: Loose Id

Rating: 4 stars

Buy Links: LId & Amazon

Type: Novel

Received from Publisher

 

Blurb:  Darren is proud of his work on the FBI’s magical Talent unit. However, his own lack of magic means he can never be with Supervisory Special Agent and Shaman Kavon Boucher. The shamanic magic poses a real danger to any mundane who gets too close, so Darren tries to hide his attraction and keep a professional relationship at work. That resolve begins to crumble when a new man sets his sights on Kavon and Darren can’t control his resentment.

Now they have a brutal new case of a suspect targeting magical adepts. Darren tries to keep focused on that crime, but when he starts to show signs of his own magic, he hopes that maybe he can not only be a more effective part of the team but also a real partner to Kavon. He might have a second chance at love if only Kavon can learn to trust his new and unpredictable magic that has changed the rules of the magical game. Continue reading Deductions (Aberrant Magic #1)

Soul Seekers

Author: Jake C Wallace

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Rating: 3 stars

Buy Links: DSP and Amazon

Type: Novel

Received from Publisher

 

Blurb:  Nineteen-year-old college student Levi Reed has spent his life with hollow emotions and a darkness so deep that he’s convinced he’s losing his mind. He’d give anything to feel something, anything, real.

When a mysterious stranger appears, Levi is convinced the man is trying to kill him. When he’s near, Levi experiences head-crushing pain and something surprising—real emotions for the first time. Jeb Monroe is arrogant, self-assured, closed-off, and handsome, but he isn’t the harbinger of doom Levi assumed. Jeb’s mission: help Levi find his missing soul.

Levi is pulled into the secret world of Seers and Keepers, those born with the innate ability to manipulate souls and tasked with balancing the negative energy they can produce. Levi learns he possesses a rare gift, and he’s in danger. As Jeb and Levi grow closer, they discover a group of zealots who want to harness Levi’s power to cleanse the world of damaged souls. Everyone Levi cares for is threatened unless he agrees to become their tool of death. But agreeing could spell the destruction of humankind. With no one to trust and nothing as it appears, it’s up to Levi to save them all. Continue reading Soul Seekers

Bright Blaze of Magic (Black Blade #3)

blazecover84959-mediumAuthor: Jennifer Estep

Publisher: Kensington/Pocket

Rating: 5 stars

Buy Links: Amazon

Type: Novel in Series

Provided by Publisher

 

Blurb: Bad Things Always Come In Threes…

As a thief, I’m good at three things: hiding in the shadows, getting in and out unseen, and uncovering secrets. I put these skills to work for the Sinclair Family, one of the magical mobs that run the tourist town of Cloudburst Falls.

Everyone knows Victor Draconi wants to take over all the other Families–and kill every last Sinclair. What they don’t know is that I’m on to him, and no way will I let the man who murdered my mom get away with hurting all the other people I care about. Especially when I’ve got places to break into, stuff to steal, and Devon Sinclair fighting right by my side…
Continue reading Bright Blaze of Magic (Black Blade #3)

Salt and Iron

Author: Tam MacNeil

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Rating: 4 stars

Buy Links: DSP and Amazon

Type: Novel

Received from Publisher

 

Blurb: James van Helsing is the youngest son of the famous monster-hunting family—and the family’s big disappointment. He’s falling in love with Gabe Marquez, his oldest friend and son of the family the van Helsings have worked alongside for years. Things get even harder for James when he becomes what he and everyone else despises most—a magic user.

He didn’t mean to evolve into such a despicable person, and he knows using magic is illegal, but there’s nothing James can do about it, no more than he can stop himself from loving Gabe. Just when things can’t seem to get worse, he and Gabe are called to help nab a network of magicians who are changing destiny. Not just any destiny, but the destinies of the van Helsing and Marquez families. James foresees a terrible fate, one in which monsters emerge from the cracks, along with his dark secret. And that’s when people start to die. Continue reading Salt and Iron

An Ordinary Hero

Author: Therese Woodson

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Rating: 3 stars

Buy Links: DSP and Amazon

Type: Novella

Received from Publisher

 

Blurb: As a paramedic, Ryan Bishop has responded to his fair share of bizarre situations. However, he’s not prepared when he meets Phillip, a local man who keeps popping up to save the day. Everyone lauds Phillip as a hero, but he prefers to stay in the background, going so far as to refuse medical treatment.

Ryan is intrigued, not only by Phillip’s unassuming manner, but also by his ability to be in the right place at the right time. Ryan wants some answers and maybe even a date. What he gets is an unexpected part in Phillip’s origin story.

Continue reading An Ordinary Hero