Standing His Ground by Jamie Begley

Standing His Ground by Jamie BegleyStanding His Ground by Jamie Begley
Series: Porter Brothers Trilogy #2
Published by Young Ink Press on March 31, 2017
Format: Kindle
Source: Purchased
Goodreads
five-stars

The Porter brothers were raised to live and die by Three Rules.
One, a Porter always keeps what’s his.
Two, a Porter leaves no enemy standing.
Three…

Greer’s been searching for love in all the wrong places. He wants kids … and lots of them, so it’s time to get busy and find the lucky woman to share his bed and his life. Though there isn’t a lot to choose from in the small town of Treepoint, he has managed to narrow his choices down to three.

The strange thing is, the one he’s falling in love with remains a mystery, hiding her face and name in the messages she sends from behind her computer. The mysterious woman may dodge his questions about her identity, but it’s only a matter of time before she finds out that this Porter brother won’t back away from something he wants, and he wants her.

Come hell or high water, he will find the one who goes by KentuckyGirl and make her his, despite what anyone says, even her. And KentuckyGirl is going to find out the last Porter rule the hard way: A Porter always stands his ground and leads his prey into his waiting arms…

I might not always be in huge L O V E with every Jamie Begley book that has graced my hands, but it can’t be denied that she is one of my all-time favorite storytellers and realistic romance writers. I’ve been both dreading and anticipating Standing His Ground, which turns out to be Greer and Holly’s story, and I can wholeheartedly say that the rollercoaster of emotions was not in vain.

For the simple fact that Standing His Ground marks the umpteenth book I’ve read by Begley and have not once been able to guess the direction she would’ve taken the story leaves me both elated and frustrated, lol.

The romance between Greer and Holly went in what I feel was the only direction that would’ve made them possible as a couple. Greer was always a butthead and Holly was almost like a Willa without having the same hangups so they had a lot to navigate through. Begley stayed true to their characters but also allowed them to evolve and become better versions of themselves which I am grateful for because these two had some serious growing to do.

Standing His Ground also tied up a few loose ends, mostly pertaining to a few unsavory characters that irked my nerves, but it also gave a somewhat better glimpse into the unconventional connection The Porter Brothers have with The Last Riders.

Standing His Ground was, again, another awesome story by Begley. I wouldn’t change a thing about it regardless of the past of these characters have come from, nor the situations that encompassed their present circumstances.

About Jamie Begley

“I was born in a small town in Kentucky. My family began poor, but worked their way to owning a restaurant. My mother was one of the best cooks I have ever known, and she instilled in all her children the value of hard work, and education.

Taking after my mother, I’ve always love to cook, and became pretty good if I do say so myself. I love to experiment and my unfortunate family has suffered through many. They now have learned to steer clear of those dishes. I absolutely love the holidays and my family puts up with my zany decorations.

For now, my days are spent writing, writing, and writing. I have two children who both graduated this year from college. My daughter does my book covers, and my son just tries not to blush when someone asks him about my books.

Currently I am writing five series of books- The Last Riders, The VIP Room, Predators MC, Biker Bitches, and The Dark Souls.

All my books are written for one purpose- the enjoyment others find in them, and the expectations of my fans that inspire me to give it my best.”

Ascent of the Aliomenti by Alex Albrinck

I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Ascent of the Aliomenti by Alex AlbrinckAscent of the Aliomenti by Alex Albrinck
Series: The Aliomenti Saga #3
Published by Tantor Audio on June 21, 2016
Format: Audiobook
Source: Publisher
Goodreads
three-stars

The Aliomenti village is in ruins, destroyed by one of their own, its population nearly eliminated in the calamity. From the ruins, the Aliomenti rise to international prominence, influencing buyers and sellers, warriors and bureaucrats, as they patiently and invisibly expand their empire. Will Stark serves as the driving force behind that expansion. Whether he's creating their innovations or offering subtle hints, few of their revolutionary progressions are made without his influence. But Will is dealing with his own private heartache. Even as he watches his fellow Aliomenti ascend to heights few of them imagined possible, his long journey becomes one he'll make alone. He's haunted by the knowledge that what enables him to make that journey will also prevent him from seeing his most important mission to its completion. Will must persevere, fighting through his own gloom, an organization that threatens to tear itself apart, and a reunion with old friends at an inopportune time. He'll come to realize that his own decisions, his own inability to understand even those he knows not to trust, have enabled a tyrant to seize control of the Aliomenti in the aftermath of a crisis.

While I’ve really enjoyed the storytelling and action of the previous stories in the Aliomenti Saga, Ascent of the Aliomenti has shown me that those same story elements can only go on for so long.

As always Todd McLaren does a good job of reading/narrating the Ascent of the Aliomenti, but it again drove home the sameness that has carried on from the previous stories in this series. Now while the circumstances are certainly different in the Ascent of the Aliomenti the character of Will hasn’t changed at all, I expected some changes to be interwoven into who he currently stood within this story. I did like Will’s character in A Question of Will and Preserving Hope, but even after being reunited with his wife (McLaren’s narration of Will’s wife voice was hard to take so it made hard to even enjoy whenever her character would step onto the scene) Will remained distant. He showed emotion but it didn’t make an impact in coming off as passionate as I wanted it to be.

I have one more book left in this series to listen to and I’m hoping that things either pick up more, and that I’m given better answers to some of the questions I have. If not I can always know that the Aliomenti Saga was one of the stories that intrigued me enough that I started looking at the science fiction genre a little harder.

Texture of Intimacy (Wild Invitation) by Nalini Singh

Texture of Intimacy (Wild Invitation) by Nalini SinghTexture of Intimacy (Wild Invitation) by Nalini Singh
Series: Psy-Changeling #10.5
Published by Berkley on March 5, 2013
Pages: 339 pages
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased
three-half-stars

In Texture of Intimacy , SnowDancer healer Lara discovers the searing joys—and unexpected challenges—of being mated to quiet, powerful Walker, a man used to keeping his silence.

Texture of Intimacy (Wild Invitation) started off exactly where Kiss of Snow ended (don’t you just love when a series continues on this way?!). Now while I immensely enjoy Walker and Lara’s mating and simply them as character I found myself bored with their ‘in the life of…’ story. (Ugh now I feel bad).

I’ve always been curious about Walker, especially the ins and outs of his relationship with Judd. But even with that curiosity I still felt a disconnect with portions of his character and story with Lara. Lara on the other hand was always a character I loved see pop up on the pages of Nalini Singh’s Psy-Changelings series. Even with that being said I wasn’t so fascinated with her character that reading an entire story where she was the leading lady was going to do much for me. That sounds bad, and she really is a great character I just see her in a supporting role instead of being front and center, although I’m glad that Walker places her in the spotlight with his love, caring, and devotion.

The familial connections that were tied throughout Texture of Intimacy (Wild Invitation) seriously warmed my heart. It was good to see Sienna be able to finally come to grips with what happened in Kiss of Snow, Marlee and Toby gains some stability after a shift on their emotional foundation, as it was good to finally see Walker come out of that titanium coated shell he’d been hiding behind since he became the patriarch of the Lauren family at such a necessary time.

Besides the romance between Lara and Walker not doing much for me, not that they weren’t compatible because they most certainly were, I got a serious kick out of Texture of Intimacy (Wild Invitation). I seriously can’t wait to see exactly where this Psy-Changeling series could go next.

About Nalini Singh

I was born in Fiji and raised in New Zealand. I also spent three years living and working in Japan, during which time I took the chance to travel around Asia. I’m back in New Zealand now, but I’m always plotting new trips. If you’d like to see some of my travel snapshots, have a look at the Travel Diary page (updated frequently).

So far, I’ve worked as a lawyer, a librarian, a candy factory general hand, a bank temp and an English teacher and not necessarily in that order. Some might call that inconsistency but I call it grist for the writer’s mill.

I’ve been writing as long as I can remember and all of my stories always held a thread of romance (even when I was writing about a prince who could shoot lasers out of his eyes). I love creating unique characters, love giving them happy endings and I even love the voices in my head. There’s no other job I would rather be doing. In September 2002, when I got the call that Silhouette Desire wanted to buy my first book, Desert Warrior, it was a dream come true. I hope to continue living the dream until I keel over of old age on my keyboard.

Kiss of Snow by Nalini Singh

Kiss of Snow by Nalini SinghKiss of Snow by Nalini Singh
Series: Psy-Changeling #10
Published by Berkley on May 31, 2011
Pages: 415 pages
Format: Hardback
Source: Purchased
Goodreads
four-half-stars

Since the moment of her defection from the PsyNet and into the SnowDancer wolf pack, Sienna Lauren has had one weakness. Hawke. Alpha and dangerous, he compels her to madness.

Hawke is used to walking alone, having lost the woman who would’ve been his mate long ago. But Sienna fascinates the primal heart of him, even as he tells himself she is far too young to handle the wild fury of the wolf.

Then Sienna changes the rules and suddenly, there is no more distance, only the most intimate of battles between two people who were never meant to meet. Yet as they strip away each other’s secrets in a storm of raw emotion, they must also ready themselves for a far more vicious fight…

A deadly enemy is out to destroy SnowDancer, striking at everything they hold dear, but it is Sienna’s darkest secret that may yet savage the pack that is her home…and the alpha who is its heartbeat…

Okay see now I’m conflicted. After reading Kiss of Snow I’m now arguing with myself on whether its story is the climax to the Psy-Changeling series or if its just the start of the newest journey to come after the climax that was Bonds of Justice. (Sigh) whatever the heck it was Kiss of Snow was the kind of rollercoaster, emotional and action-packed, that I love to ride!

From the introduction of Hawke and Sienna’s character in the earlier stories of Nalini Singh’s Psy-Changeling series my anticipation for their story, especially when their attraction/forbidden attraction surfaced early on in this series, has ramped up with each installment.

Before I even knew what they Psy-Changeling series consisted of I first, blindly, picked up Kiss of Snow way back when and fell in love. I’d also caught up on Singh’s Guild Hunter series (I believe I had just finished Archangel’s Consort or Archangel’s Kiss at the time) and I wanted to test the waters in what I saw as her ‘other’ series. (If you didn’t know already I’m a backwards person and find myself often doing backwards things.) In reading Kiss of Snow out of order I knew that before I continued on I needed to start at the beginning, hence my first time reading through the Psy-Changeling series.

I could sing from the rafters about Kiss of Snow but I’ll instead leave off with this…if from the synopsis and my review you feel the desire to read Kiss of Snow please start off with either Beat of Temptation (Wild Invitation) or Slave to Sensation. Starting with either one of these stories is the surest way for you to get the full impact of all Kiss of Snow has to offer.

About Nalini Singh

I was born in Fiji and raised in New Zealand. I also spent three years living and working in Japan, during which time I took the chance to travel around Asia. I’m back in New Zealand now, but I’m always plotting new trips. If you’d like to see some of my travel snapshots, have a look at the Travel Diary page (updated frequently).

So far, I’ve worked as a lawyer, a librarian, a candy factory general hand, a bank temp and an English teacher and not necessarily in that order. Some might call that inconsistency but I call it grist for the writer’s mill.

I’ve been writing as long as I can remember and all of my stories always held a thread of romance (even when I was writing about a prince who could shoot lasers out of his eyes). I love creating unique characters, love giving them happy endings and I even love the voices in my head. There’s no other job I would rather be doing. In September 2002, when I got the call that Silhouette Desire wanted to buy my first book, Desert Warrior, it was a dream come true. I hope to continue living the dream until I keel over of old age on my keyboard.

Declaration of Courtship (Wild Invitation) by Nalini Singh

Declaration of Courtship (Wild Invitation) by Nalini SinghDeclaration of Courtship (Wild Invitation) by Nalini Singh
Series: Psy-Changeling #9.5
Published by Berkley on March 5, 2013
Pages: 339 pages
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased
four-stars

In Declaration of Courtship , Grace, a shy submissive wolf, finds herself pursued by the last man she ever would have imagined: a SnowDancer lieutenant said to be “mad, bad, and dangerous to know.”

In reading Play of Passion I knew I wanted Cooper’s story but I didn’t think that Declaration of Courtship (Wild Invitation) would come on the heels of its story. (I am seriously loving reading the Psy-Changeling series in its correct order).

With each installment it seems Nalini Singh takes us deeper into this dynamic and unique world she has created, pulling back another layer that we didn’t know was there. In Declaration of Courtship (Wild Invitation) we were able to dive deeper into the mysterious relationship match up that was first introduced in Play of Passion, a dominant/submissive relationship. Since the series has been riddle with dominant/just as dominant relationships I was intrigued by how Singh was going to spin the story of Cooper (dominant) and Grace (submissive).

The execution of Cooper and Grace’s relationship in Declaration of Courtship (Wild Invitation) went about in the only way it could’ve. I did, though, find myself disconnecting with Cooper’s character which I thought was odd because I was sort of expecting to find Grace’s character harder to connect with than I did. I simply didn’t get his individual character, of course there was the necessary background information on his struggles and character attributes but they just didn’t penetrate deep enough for me to form a connection with his character. Regardless though, I loved his interactions and his courtship of Grace, and it was in these moments that I could understand him but when there were scenes of him alone I was left puzzled about his motivations.

About Nalini Singh

I was born in Fiji and raised in New Zealand. I also spent three years living and working in Japan, during which time I took the chance to travel around Asia. I’m back in New Zealand now, but I’m always plotting new trips. If you’d like to see some of my travel snapshots, have a look at the Travel Diary page (updated frequently).

So far, I’ve worked as a lawyer, a librarian, a candy factory general hand, a bank temp and an English teacher and not necessarily in that order. Some might call that inconsistency but I call it grist for the writer’s mill.

I’ve been writing as long as I can remember and all of my stories always held a thread of romance (even when I was writing about a prince who could shoot lasers out of his eyes). I love creating unique characters, love giving them happy endings and I even love the voices in my head. There’s no other job I would rather be doing. In September 2002, when I got the call that Silhouette Desire wanted to buy my first book, Desert Warrior, it was a dream come true. I hope to continue living the dream until I keel over of old age on my keyboard.