As I have said before, I love anthologies. You can find both old friends, and new authors to enjoy. This collection of six stories, from shorts to a full-length novel, proves to be exactly the case.
Still Sexy ( a Hunter Protection Group story) by Sasha White, is only 30 pages, but it is so tightly written and well-paced that I am looking forward to reading more of the series.
When human, Caleb Mann, and his wife the psychic Gina (stars of Sexy Devil) decide to get away from the hectic life of raising their baby and spend a weekend away, they expect a nice, sensual weekend. Only, as is apparently the case in their lives, nothing turns out the way they intended . . . well, almost.
Phantom Warriors 2: Saber-tooth by Jordan Summers is another paranormal. Katy Manfred is a trapper for what appears to be a biological corporation. Sent out to capture what appears to be a saber-tooth at the LA Brea Tar Pits, she finds much more than she expected. . . ‘otherworldly lover’ anyone? This story seems to be from a group of other shorts – the sort of short, sexy read that you can chill over for an hour or two. Summers has a large catalog I will check out at another time.
A Soul in the Hand by Marsheila Rockwell and Jeffrey J. Mariotte is a 94 page fantasy tale. Honestly? I wasn’t in the mood for swords, so I only scanned it. Meh. Not my taste if the parts I read. If you like more ‘high fantasy’ you may like it – I hope you do!
I enjoyed Glimmer by Vivi Anna, a Romantic Urban Fantasy of 123 pages. I felt deeply for Nina Decker, abandoned by her fae mother at 10 and left to watch her father slowly waste away from fae sickness. Nina is an RN in a Vancouver hospital, and when a victim rolls in, supposedly the victim of a werewolf attack, she finds her whole life changing. Running into the wolf alpha as she leaves the hospital she is dragged kicking-and-screaming into a world she never wanted a part of. And when things begin to go disturbingly wrong, being a hated enemy to a wolf pack is a minor issue compared to what her life is truly becoming – what she is truly becoming . . . murderous pixies, evil fae, and more things than she can count that go bump in the night. Add in a vicious fae mum, and could life get turn into any more of a pain in the arse? Well. Yes, actually. Dawning and Portal are the others in the series.
The Darkening by Caris Roane is based on a series called The Guardians of Ascension which I haven’t read. This story contains death vampires and war, a damaged heroine and a warrior hero all set on Second Earth. It comes across as a sci-fi/fantasy/sword and sorcery series filled with ancient evil and magic. I tried, couldn’t do it. If you are a follower of the series, you will be adding it to your collection. I just couldn’t focus on it. That doesn’t make it bad, just not to my particular tastes.
And finally, there is The Night Beat. I have read this book before, I realized that the minute I started it, and was tickled to no end. I had lost track of the book, but it crossed my mind occasionally over time, and I was thrilled to find it in its whole in this anthology. The first of the Necropolis Enforcement Files I remember thinking at the time I finished it back a few years ago that I absolutely wanted to put the second book on my ‘TBR’ stack. Then, of course, I got distracted. Come to find out, the second in the series comes out in 2015, so I won’t have to wait all that terribly long for the second. Go me!
It’s time to kick icky butt and take unpronounceable names . . . and undercover cop and werewolf Victoria Wolfe is there to take them on. Take them all on, along with an eclectic cast of famous dead musicians and writers, zombies and ghouls and mummies (oh, my!) all fighting on the side of right for whatever god or monster they have chosen to follow… and stopping ‘The Prince’ is on the very tippy-top of all their ‘must do’ lists. The good guys include a few who are not at all who you were taught to think they were, and sometimes even the bad guys can be the good guys under the right situation – but of course, when they are bad, they are so very, very bad . . . Can’t wait for the next in the series!
So, four out of six isn’t bad – not that the two I didn’t finish were bad, per se, the writing was good, they just didn’t trip my particular trigger. Another great .99 cent anthology!