S.E.C.R.E.T by L. Marie Adeline

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As someone who is NOT a fan of 50 Shades but a fan and long time reader of erotic fiction I was hesitant to read S.E.C.R.E.T because of the hoopla surrounding it. Popular does not always equate with good and since I found the so called steamy sex scenes in 50 Shades to be very clinical and unsexy, I was expecting much of the same from this story.

My friend Andrea messaged me one day to say that I HAD to read it! It had blown her away. Now, mostly Andrea and I have different tastes in everything from reading material to music but occasionally we come together on something and when we do….. oh boy! Thus was the case with S.E.C.R.E.T. I am so glad she recommended it to me, I only regret that I didn’t read it months ago when I first got it.

Set in New Orleans, S.E.C.R.E.T tells the story of Cassie Robichaud, a widow who has fallen into the rut of going to work and going home and having the hots for her boss. One day she discovers a secret group run by some very passionate women. This group believes that all women should be comfortable in their own skin, confident in their strength and beauty as well as in charge of their own sexual experiences. Because most women aren’t comfortable with all of that, this group helps women to gain it all through secret meetings that fulfill their wildest dreams and desires.

When I started reading this book I wasn’t sure I liked the heroine (Cassie) by the end I still wasn’t sure if I did or not. Mostly because she reminded me a lot of myself I’m guessing. But over all I really enjoyed the story. The sex scenes may be short but they are definitely tantalizing, hot and steamy. The story takes place in New Orleans which becomes as much a character as the people are. It certainly has given me several ideas of restaurants and places to visit when I travel there in May.

I had this book sitting in my TBR pile for months but after reading it I had to order the second one immediately and am now anxiously awaiting the third installment. Was I excited to hear that I don’t have to wait until 2015 for it!

If you’re looking for a sexy beach read for your winter vacation or to escape the snow outside then I highly recommend giving this one a try.
And if you happen to know of such a club existing………

I give this book 4.5 out of 5 Reads.

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Sea of Shadows by Kelley Armstrong

I have been a Kelley Armstrong fan since I discovered Bitten(in 2003) and had to wait two anxious months for Stolen. While I am a huge and longtime fan I willing admit that I enjoy some of her books more then others.
For instance; Bitten, Stolen and No Humans Involved are my favourites from The Women of the Otherworld series. I read the first Nadia book (Exit Strategy) and have the next two but I did not enjoy it as much as the Otherworld series so I have not read two or three. I LOVE The Darkest Powers books and own Loki’s Wolves which I have not yet gotten around to reading.

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I started reading an ARC of the first book in her Age of Legends trilogy entitled Sea of Shadows due to be released in April. One of the privileges of being a book seller.
I have to say that this story enthralled me. The Grammys were on and I was watching them but I couldn’t put this book down for any length of time. I finished it early the next day and am now feeling bereft. Kelley has a tendency to do this phenomenally horrible thing to us where she draws us deeply into the story and then leaves us dangling from the cliff. That’s right all you Kelley fans, Sea of Shadows will leave you wanting more!

Sea of Shadows tells the story of twin sisters Ashyn and Moria who are the Keeper and Seeker of Edgewood. Born to perform the rites of the spirits and protect their village they converse with the Spirits. But on the annual trip into the Forest of the Dead something goes terribly wrong and the girls lives are irrevocably changed forever.

Separated during a disaster in their village and tricked into going in different directions they are forced to leave their village for the first time in their lives. The girls each set out with only their bonded Immortal pets, one with a taciturn imperial guard and the other with a condemned thief that survived the Exile. Their journey takes them across a once deserted wasteland that is now filled with monsters from old legends. They must cross the Wastelands to warn the Emperor.

One thing I really enjoyed about this book are that the legendary creatures they must fight. The journey they must travel sort of reminds me of one of my all-time favourite movies…. The Princess Bride. I am not saying the two are exactly alike just that this story has the same epic romantic quest feel and the humour as the movie does. I dare you to tell me that the rodent they meet doesn’t make you think of R.O.U.S’s.

My one issue was the vast amount of characters you are introduced to almost immediately. I got so confused that I thought the guy with the eye tattoo (Orbec) was the guard (Gavril) who ends up travelling with Moria. I might suggest that this is one of those books that needs a Table of Characters.

I give this story 5 out of 5 Reads.

If you are looking for a great Fantasy read I highly recommend this one!

Dualed byElise Chapman

A couple of weeks ago I read a copy of Dualed because a friend had posted a clip of the audio version on their facebook page, it intrigued me. As I walked by my book case I noticed I had an advanced copy on my TBR pile so I thought Why Not?

Dualed by Elise Chapman brings together bits and pieces of all my favourite YA Dystopian novels yet stands all on its own. West Grayer is a strong female character that I’m pretty sure could take down Katniss (especially the Katniss in The MockingJay), could give Triss a run for her money and show Saba (from Blood Red Road) a thing or too about pushing people away.

In the town of Kersh every citizen must prove their worth before their 20th birthday by killing their ALT, a genetic replica of themselves. Only the strongest, fastest, smartest are desired in this safe town in a world that’s been destroyed.  West has been preparing for this all her life but when her turn comes after losing almost everyone she’s loved she makes some decisions that take her on a journey she would never have expected taking.

How does one survive ones conscience in a town where every adult has committed murder? Where winning means not only better food, a job and a better life but also that you have killed a carbon copy of yourself? Dualed presents these questions and many others to the reader while taking them on a journey filled with strife, survival and romance.

Dualed is Elise Chapman’s debut novel and is expected to be followed by a sequel in February 2014. I look forward to reading it and more from this new Canadian author.

I give Dualed 4 out of 5 Reads