I have been collecting short reviews for all my Why Buy the Cow? freebie reads on Goodreads and figured it wouldn’t hurt to post them all together here on the blog in case you missed my reviews on Goodreads. Ready? Here we go.
Something Secret This Way Comes by Sierra Dean (Secret McQueen, #1)
Some secrets are dangerous. This Secret is deadly.
For Secret McQueen, her life feels like the punch line for a terrible joke. Abandoned at birth by her werewolf mother, hired as a teen by the vampire council of New York City to kill rogues, Secret is a part of both worlds, but belongs to neither. At twenty-two, she has carved out as close to a normal life as a bounty hunter can.
When an enemy from her past returns with her death on his mind, she is forced to call on every ounce of her mixed heritage to save herself—and everyone else in the city she calls home. As if the fate of the world wasn’t enough to deal with, there’s Lucas Rain, King of the East Coast werewolves, who seems to believe he and Secret are fated to be together. Too bad Secret also feels a connection with Desmond, Lucas’s second-in-command…
This book contains a sarcastic, kick-ass bounty hunter; a metaphysical love triangle with two sexy werewolves; a demanding vampire council; and a spicy seasoning of sex and violence.
I’m torn what to think about about this book. I liked it. I definitely did. But it pushed a couple buttons I don’t like being pushed: love triangles and cliffhangers.
There’s really no way around the cliffhanger I suppose, but the love triangle was definitely interesting. It was better than most, yes, but it’s also partly because there didn’t really seem to be any time to get to know and make a connection with either werewolf, despite there being sex. I was all, “Woe! Who to choose?!” even as Secret is smexing it up with one of her love triangle options. It’s likely this made it easier to deal.
Other than that, I adored this world, and I adored Secret. Secret is bad ass, and she’s got a secret. A big one. It influences her decisions and basically her entire life. I wanted to spend more time getting to know Secret and her world, but this book felt remarkably short. Too short, almost, and incomplete, given the cliffhanger.
I want to know what happens next, though. Even if I am a little worried about said love triangle.
Note: downloaded as a free Amazon download on Feb. 1, 2012
Pyxis: The Discovery by K.C. Neal (Pyxis, #1)
Corinne lives an average teenage life working at her dad’s cafe, hanging out with her best friend, and trying to forget a falling-out with her almost-boyfriend Mason. Things take a strange turn when she uses her late grandmother’s food dyes for a bake sale, and her customers suddenly find her irresistibly alluring. Then she discovers she and Mason are haunted by the same dreams of a dark force that consumes everything in its path.
Pursued by shadowy figures and a crazy woman with secrets from the past, Corinne must find out who her grandmother really was. In her quest to unravel her family’s history, she learns she is destined to protect this world–and the dark world of her dreams. She races to find the answers she seeks before her nightmares break free.
I’m not really sure what I was expecting from Pyxis, but I was pleasantly surprised. My largest complaint about Pyxis was the lack of information, and a few of Corinne’s choices (which made me want to smack her upside the head a bit).
Pyxis is a relatively short book that yes, ended on a cliffhanger, but I was suitably entertained enough to be interested in picking up the next book in the series.
Though I would have liked more background information about the Pyxis and various roles, I felt that it was a pretty unique concept, and uniqueness is always a valued commodity in YA books these days.
Pyxis was a free download from Amazon I picked up on March 6, 2012.
Ascension by Felicity E. Heaton
A witch on the verge of achieving phenomenal power, Lealandra must turn to her half-breed demon ex-lover Taig for protection from the dark force that is after her and also from her own magic.
With her Counter-Balance dead and her coven against her, Taig’s blood and power is the only thing that can help her control her magic and survive the ascension and gain the strength to defeat her enemy.
Old feelings come flooding back as Taig allows her into his world and Lealandra finds herself fighting not only for survival but to win his broken heart again and heal the pain in their past. Can he forgive her for walking out on him all those years ago and will he ever believe her when she tells him that he’s not a monster but the man that she loves?
I didn’t dislike this book, though I didn’t particularly like it, either. I suppose a 2.5 rating would be more accurate. I went in looking for some smut, and got, as Tara said, a lot of repetitiveness about love and feelings, to the point where I got confused about who thought what and I just started to skim. First they were sure the other loved them, then they didn’t know because the words “I love you” were never mentioned and it just kind of got tangled all up.
The world building was minimal, and I could have done with a little more information about witches and demons (and vampires) as they seemed to play by slightly different rules than I’m used to. Perhaps I could have overlooked this in favor of the romance, but the romance wasn’t a favorite.
I also caught a few typos and that always rankles my inner editor.
I got Ascension as a free download from Amazon on March 25, 2012.
Summer’s Crossing by Julie Kagawa (Iron Fey, #3.5)
A Midsummer’s Nightmare? Robin Goodfellow. Puck. Summer Court prankster, King Oberon’s right hand, bane of many a faery queen’s existence—and secret friend to Prince Ash of the Winter Court. Until one girl’s death came between them, and another girl stole both their hearts.
Now Ash has granted one favor too many and someone’s come to collect, forcing the prince to a place he cannot go without Puck’s help—into the heart of the Summer Court. And Puck faces the ultimate choice—betray Ash and possibly win the girl they both love, or help his former friend turned bitter enemy pull off a deception that no true faery prankster could possibly resist.
Summer’s Crossing was a fun jaunt in Puck’s world. Normally I am not a fan of novellas because there is either too much or too little story. But not here! This was a quick, simple story about Puck and Ash and one of their adventures between full length novels.
I also found myself liking Puck a lot more in this novella than in previous books. He was fun, and you have got to love his pranks.
Summer’s Crossing was a free Kindle download on October 22, 2011.
Magic Gifts by Ilona Andrews (Kate Daniels, #5.4)
A dinner date after a hard day at work sounds heavenly. Of course, when that date is between the Beast Lord and Kate Daniels, things don’t go as planned. Before you know it, undead are running amok, heads are being chopped off, lawyers are deployed and used with extereme prejudice, and drunk vikings are calling people out.
This was JUST what I needed to survive the wait between Kate Daniels books (hopefully Gunmetal Magic will help with that as well at the end of July). I actually really enjoyed the brief look into Kate and Curran’s life and was very satisfied with how their relationship is progressing. You know, now that they’re together, I had fears that their relationship would become complacent, but if the sixth book goes something like this, I think those fears will be assuaged.
With the world and characters already established, Magic Gifts really did feel like the perfect mini-story between books. So glad Kelly convinced me to read this one.
Magic Gifts was a free download I got from the author’s website on December 29th, 2011.