This Chick Read: Sweep of the Blade (Innkeepers #4) by Ilona Andrews

Sweep of the Blade is the first novel in this series to not feature Innkeeper Dina Demille. Instead, we learn her sister Maud’s fascinating story of love, heartbreak and honor. Seeing through Maud’s eyes her love for her first husband and consequent betrayal by him I understood more the barrier she built to save herself, and her daughter Helen from caring for anyone that much again. When she helps her sister defend her Inn and meets Arland her will starts to bend until she agree’s to go with him to House Krahr to determine how well she and Helen would fit in.

Maud is such an interesting character! She is a warrior, scholar, mother and woman who just kicks A&&! If you looked up fierce in the Ilona Andrews dictionary, you’d see a picture of Matilda “Maud” Demille. A human married into a vampire House, Maud had to show her worth by knowing every single fact about that vampire world. Those facts combined with her knowledge from an education growing up an Innkeeper’s child made her a silent threat. As she navigates House Krahr those skills become invaluable as she uses them to infiltrate behind possible enemy lines.

Arland, Marshal of House Krahr, is as funny and unique as in previous books, but in this one we see a more serious side. He is back home where he has a job to do and outside influences take up a lot of his time. This doesn’t take away from his determination to win Maud as his wife and be a father to Helen. He does this by allowing Maud to shine on her own. I LOVED that!

Helen as in the last book, steals the show. She is sassy, brilliant, and fierce like her mom. A veritable mini-Maud, albeit she is a human-vampire hybrid. I hope somewhere in our future Helen has her own series!

The Innkeeper series is one of my favorites. I’ve listened and read each book numerous times and always find a new tidbit to keep me coming back. Sweep of the Blade only added to the allure, and the ending? Oh boy! I can’t wait to read what happens in the next novel!

❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

” got my copy of this around 4:00 this morning, and devoured it in one setting. So much love. I don’t usually like books where one of the main characters already has a kid, but this one is a big exception. Helen is an absolute favorite of mine – I would go so far as to say my favorite kid in a series, period. So, so much fun.” Wicked Scribes

Click this link to purchase!* Sweep of the Blade (Innkeeper Chronicles)

Copyright 2019 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate

It’s Monday! What are you Reading? (7/1/19)

Happy Monday everyone! I ran across this post on Book Date and liked the idea of sharing what I’m currently reading, so here goes!

JUST FINISHED

Sapphire Flames: A Hidden Legacy novel by Ilona Andrews

First Sentence Read: “I was swimming through the warm water of the Gulf when someone knocked on the sky.”

JUST STARTED

No More Secrets: A Small Town Love Story (Blue Moon #1) by Lucy Score

First Sentence Read: “Summer Lentz hefted her suitcase and laptop bag into the trunk of her snappy little rental car.”

Sapphire Flames was everything I could’ve imagined and it’s been so hard to choose my next book! Truthfully I started a different book, the second in a series where I loved the first book and it just didn’t feel right, so I put it down. I haven’t started No More Secrets yet, but LOVED the last novel of Lucy Score’s I read so I have high hopes I’ll be able to get into this one!

It’s the start of a new week, What are YOU reading?

Share in the comments below….

Have a great week reading!

Deb

This Chick Read: Diamond Fire (Hidden Legacy 3.5) by Ilona Andrews

This short novella is a fix for all of us Ilona Andrews junkies. We get just a taste of Nevada and Baylor, as the story revolves around the planning of their wedding, but it centers around her sister Catalina. Nevada goes through a few wedding planners so her sisters Catalina and Arabella decide to step in and take over. No worries about Nevada turning into Bridezilla, she doesn’t, but some of her tastes are a little questionable and there are a few wedding guests who’d rather not see her walk down the aisle. When a Rogan family heirloom goes missing, Catalina is hired to track it down before Nevada’s big day.

I have always wanted to see a little bit more of Catalina. As a Prime Siren, she has the power to enthrall and make anyone love her to the point of obsession. As Catalina investigates she has to go outside her comfort zone and use her skills as a Siren to get people to answer her questions. It was fascinating to see another side to Catalina as she explores her powers. She is obviously afraid but her love for her family makes her step up and solve this mystery. You could tell the author(s) had a lot of fun with this short story!

I LOVED the big reveal at the end of the story. As Catalina runs down the list of who did what, Nevada is described as leaning back in her chair and giving her sister a big thumbs up and a grin. You could just feel the pride and love. Yes, the Hidden Legacy series revolves around Rogan and Nevada, but the underlining theme is family, and the Baylor’s are the definition of that word. Of course, as this was a short story, you are left wanting more, more, more! I believe the next novel, also centering around Catalina, will be out sometime in 2019. As with all of the others, it will be well worth the wait! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

“You can always count on Ilona Andrews for a story that will not only thrill and excite, but also wrap you up in the complex personal relationships of their characters. Diamond Fire was a terrific addition to the series and sets the stage nicely for Catalina to lead the way in upcoming books.”Harlequin Junkie

“I feel like this book accomplished what it set out to do – make me anticipate Catalina’s story. But it also suffered from its short length and didn’t have the usual brilliant plotting and storytelling that we know the author can bring to the table.” Rayas Reads

img_1560

Click this link to purchase!* Diamond Fire: A Hidden Legacy Novella

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate

This Chick Read: Magic Triumphs (Kate Daniels #10) by Ilona Andrews

I am thrilled to have gotten an ARC of Magic Triumphs by Ilona Andrews. I am a huge fan of  this series and have read, listened to, and dreamed about every novel. I’ll be honest though, if I hadn’t gotten this ARC I may have sat on this novel for a little while. It’s so hard to say goodbye to characters you love so much! As this book comes out on 8/28 I knew I’d have to buckle down and get over my emotional pain and read the novel. Without giving away the plot too much, here are my brief thoughts.

Kate- The reason why I love this heroine so much is because even though she has this incredible power and could do and be pretty much anything she wants, she remains true throughout this series. She wants to have friends, love, and have a home with Curran. A home, not a castle, not as ruler, just as a woman wanting to be with her man. Magic Triumphs stretches Kate further than she’s ever been. As we have seen in the Oracles visions in past novels, Kate knows she will battle her father, Roland, which may cause her son or her husband Curran’s death. She will do absolutely ANYTHING to keep their deaths from happening.

We found out at the end of Magic Binds that Kate is pregnant, so I’m not spoiling anything by saying that this novel starts off with the birth of their son and the majority of the novel takes place while her son is around 1 years old. He is such a fun presence in this novel and added something new and fresh to Kate’s character. MOM. I also loved seeing how proud Curran is of his son, and I think my favorite line in this book is Curran’s “He’s a prodigy.” Conlan, their little boy, is a little more than Kate had expected and his antics provide some much needed humor to what could have been a really darkly emotional novel.

The whole Kate Daniels series has been leading up to her battle with her father, Roland. So, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone when I say that yes, they battle. However, before that happens they have a couple of heart twanging moments that make you wish things had been different for Kate. It’s a shame she didn’t get the father she needed, but then we wouldn’t have had all of these wonderful stories to read! I feel like Roland paused for a moment reflecting on that same wish. That he’d have had the chance to just love his daughter. However, he is who he is and can’t change his megalomaniac ways…

Curran. I just love him. In Magic Triumphs he proves his worth as mate to Kate. They are now parents and we see them go through another evolution in their relationship, but Curran takes things even beyond where I saw his character going in order to keep his family safe. When I stop to think about it, it’s pretty jaw dropping, but my lips are sealed!

Magic Triumphs ends on a positive note. When I say that, I mean that we are given hope that more novels in this world will be written. We already know that Hugh and Elara have their own series, and they are actually an integral part of this book as well. We get a hint at the end that two more characters may have their own stories written. I can only hope!

I am going to end this review by copying what Ilona Andrews wrote on their blog. Paraphrasing, of course. ‘If this is the first time you have picked up a book in the Kate Daniels series. Put it down. Pick up Magic Bites. It’s our least favorite in the series, but the first and it needs to be read in order. It gets better, we promise.’ Boy does it!

❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

I was given an ARC of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest!

Magic Triumphs

Click this link to purchase!*Magic Triumphs (Kate Daniels)

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate

This Chick Read: Iron and Magic (The Iron Covenant #1) by Ilona Andrews

A couple years ago Ilona Andrews published a blog post saying that they were writing a novel about Hugh D’Ambray, the ultimate evil character in their Kate Daniels series. They received a ton of comments from readers who were so excited to see how they would turn the Preceptor of the Iron Dogs, Roland’s right hand into a character sympathetic enough to capture readers hearts.

April Fools! they said. Well, that April Fools joke has turned into a reality.

Iron and Magic is the first in a new series set in the same world as their Kate Daniels series. Hugh D’Ambray has been thrown aside by Roland and is floating adrift in an alcoholic stupor when his Iron Dogs, men on his warrior crew, sober him up by saying Roland is killing them all one by one. They need Hugh to stand with them and be their leader. Hugh may not be a very nice guy, (in fact we have seen him torture and kill some of our favorite characters!) but he is very loyal to this group of men and would do most anything to help them survive. Including marry.

Elara Harper is the leader of her own crew, The Departed. She is known as the White Lady and in some eyes she is an abomination. That is all we know about her when Hugh arrives at her castle. His men need a place to defend and food to eat, and her castle needs defending. Not really a match made in heaven but they do both get something out of it. Elara’s people are fiercely loyal to her and as the story unravels we see why. She is strong, loyal, and will sacrifice her own needs for the survival of her people. Hmm, sounds a little similar to someone else we know, right?

Hugh has always been a rough bastard, and he does not change in this novel. He’s still a bad ass. However, Ilona Andrews has made him human and that humanity gives him a new emotion, regret. Once you start to regret things your heart and mind are open to other new emotions. Now, don’t get me wrong, Hugh is still one bad hombre, but he’s now a bad hombre with a conscience. A conscience that makes him hesitate slightly before he makes the decision to maim or kill. He and Elara do not get along, but their bickering provides humor and also adds to Hugh’s humanity. He has always had wit, but has never had a female sparring partner who would see the charm beneath the one liners. Elara is fierce, and like Kate that is very attractive to Hugh. He doesn’t want to like her but can’t seem to help himself. Their relationship is as fascinating to watch unfold as is the story of their fight against a common enemy which is an amazing read.

This novel was everything I never knew I wanted and I can’t wait to read it again. If you have not read the Kate Daniels series, I think this would stand well on its own. BUY IT!

Iron and Magic

Click this link to purchase*! Iron and Magic: (The Iron Covenant Book 1) (Volume 1)

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate

Joint Review: Sweep in Peace by Ilona Andrews

Joint Review: Sweep in Peace by Ilona Andrews

http://bookbinge.com/2018/02/joint-review-sweep-in-peace-by-ilona-andrews/
— Read on bookbinge.com/2018/02/joint-review-sweep-in-peace-by-ilona-andrews/

You all know How much I love Ilona Andrews books. I found this really fun review of Sweep In Peace on Book Binge and wanted to share it with you. I can tell when bloggers are having fun and not only did these ladies love the book but they had a great time sharing their opinions.

If you haven’t read Sweep in Peace it is the second novel in the Innkeeper Chronicles. A wonderful fantasy series by Ilona Andrews!

This Chick Read: Fate’s Edge (The Edge #3) by Ilona Andrews

I have been listening to the audio books of all of Ilona Andrews books. I have read all of them before, but listening to the narration by Renee Raudman has given me a new appreciation for some stories that I haven’t read in quite a few years. Fate’s Edge is one of those stories and Renee Raudman’s characterizations were spot on and her delivery engaging.

The Edge series is pretty dark. When I listened to Bayou Moon (book 2) I thought wow, there are some pretty grim and gruesome details in this book! There’s something about listening to a book that make those details really stand out. Fate’s Edge tells the story of Kaldar and Audrey. We had met Kaldar previously in Bayou Moon. He was kind of a crazy character and I wasn’t sure how they’d write a whole book about him and didn’t remember if I liked him or not. Turns out I LOVE him. Being inside Kaldar’s head gives us insight into why he does all of these crazy things. When he meets Audrey he’s working for the Mirror (think CIA) trying to find the team that stole some magical bracelets that the Mirror doesn’t want out in the world. Audrey is one of the thieves who stole those bracelets and he is gobsmacked when he meets her. She is drop dead gorgeous and a natural con artist. Something he really admires.

The greatest thing about these two characters is that they understand each other perfectly. They are very similar, both are con artists, both are great actors and both have been disappointed by life. When they meet, Audrey knows immediately that Kaldar is her soul mate but she is determined to keep him at arm’s length because she knows to be involved with a grifter is to doom yourself to a disappointing love life. Kaldar doesn’t immediately know that Audrey is his one and only, he just knows he wants her. Their back and forth dialog, along with their adventure while retrieving the bracelets is lighthearted and fun. A refreshing departure in this dramatic series! Eventually those interactions and adventures makes it apparent to Kaldar that Audrey is meant for him. When he comes to this realization your heart squeezes at the emotion he is feeling.

Along for the ride in this adventure are George and Jack. Rose’s little brothers from The Edge, the first novel in the series. They provided some humor as well as their own little heart tugging moments. When the story ends, you just don’t want to let the two of them go, they are so adorable. I can’t wait to listen to the Innkeeper series because my sister told me that George and Jack show up as an adults and I can’t quite remember his part in that story and it’s driving me mad. These novels are interconnected in ways that I didn’t realize and by listening to them all at one time, I’m seeing and hearing things that I missed on the first reading. What fun!

❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Fate's Edge Click this link to purchase! Fate’s Edge (The Edge, Book 3) Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

This Chick’s Sunday Commentary: The one where she saves Julie’s life

I would LOVE to have three days to just read and read and read. Unfortunately some thing just keeps getting in the way. This week I read one book. It took me forever to read it and that just, well, never happens. I can always find the time! I write on other bloggers posts, giving them tips and hints about how to carve out more reading time. Listen to audio books while you excercise, read during your commute to work, take a book and read on your lunch break. All of these things I normally do, but this week I just did not.

What’s wrong with me? Nothing really. I am still getting up in the mornings and taking a nice long walk for excercise. I am listening to a series I absolutely loved, Ilona Andrews Kate Daniels series. Well, I guess that is actually the problem. I have become obsessed with these books again! They have gotten in the way of me picking up a new book. I have ARC commitments! Who cares? Says my inner demon. Listen to Kate kick ass and fall in love with Curran. I have projects to focus on at work! Who cares? My inner demon speaks yet again. I am enthralled with the narrator who gives voice to all of these fantastic characters in these books! I laugh out loud at Kate’s inner monologue. She’s got such a sarcastic inner voice and it reminds me of my own! I forgot how much I love these characters that made a lonely Kate no longer alone. I have fallen in love again with Derrick, Julie, Andrea, Aunt Bea, and yes most especially that gravelly voiced Curren. Yum.

So, I have been in a bit of a reading slump. At least of new books. It’s a good thing I pre-schedule my blog and have written a bunch of reviews… ok, I have to get back. I am at the end of book 5 , Magic Slays, you know, the one where she saves Julie’s life? Yeah, intense!

If you haven’t read this series, here’s the first one. If you have a long commute? I suggest listening to it. You will NOT be disappointed.


Click this link to purchase!   Magic Bites

Copyright 2017 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

This Chick Read: Wildfire (Hidden Legacy #3) by Ilona Andrews

Nevada Baylor and Connor Rogan are one of my favorite fictional couples. The combination of strength, unselfishness, and unbelievable chemistry make discovering this world and reading their story a lot of fun. Wildfire, the third and possibly last book in this series stayed on my TBR only as long as it took for me to pick it up, take it home and start reading.

Nevada has discovered that she is related to one of the most ruthless houses. A house that does not have any living relatives but one, and her grandmother has found out that her lost son had a family, and she is going to try to claim them. In order to keep her family safe Nevada and her sister need to declare themselves Primes and become their own House, House Baylor. Nevada makes plans to register their house while investigating another mystery and battling the mysterious Consortium that was revealed in the two previous books.

Every time a House is revealed with new and fascinating powers I fall in love with the world in this book a little bit more. The thought that this could be the last one is heartbreaking. BUT, I have heard a rumor. Apparently Ilona and Gordon Andrews don’t want this to be the last book in the series either. There is a strong possibility that they may release more, but not with this publisher. I certainly hope so! Every Ilona Andrews book is completely original. What makes this series so special? Connor and his tragically lonely background, incredible power, honor and vivid love for Nevada makes him magical. Nevada’s strength of character, love for a man that everyone else is afraid of, and her loyalty towards her family and friends gives us a heroine to root for. The two of them together have depths that I still need to plunder. Please!

❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️


Click link to purchase! Wildfire: A Hidden Legacy Novel

Copyright 2017 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

This Chicks Sunday Commentary: Favorite Fictional Couples 

I have never been the type of person who gets crushes on famous actors, has a book boyfriend, favorite band or heck, even a favorite food.  Sure I have likes and dislikes; I like Chris Hemsworth more than Liam Hemsworth and Mexican Food more than Chinese, but never have had an outright favorite.

I do however have favorite fiction couples. Is it the thought that there is one person out there for everyone? Sure. But it’s more of how those two people fit together and that chemistry thats so fascinating. Let’s analyze a few of my favorites.

The Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon – Jamie and Claire

I read these books when they first came out in the ’90’s. Yes, some of you weren’t even born yet! ALL the women in my family passed these books around to each other and swooned over Jamie and Claire. One of my Uncles even named his daughter Claire ( yes, the men in my family have read Outlander, even my own husband!). Why do these two connect so well with us? Claire is a modern woman, well modern for historical highland Scotland anyway. She’s smart, stands up for herself, and even though torn between two men finds enough love within herself for both. Jamie is the love of her life or lifetimes, as the case may be. Jamie, a young handsome highlander likes her smarts, sass, and experience. Most importantly, he allows her to to be Claire. In doing so, he captures her heart even when they live centuries apart. That separation and the fact that Claire travels through time to be with her true love only makes us love it and them more.

Click this link to purchase! Outlander

In Death series by J. D. Robb – Eve and Rourke

She’s a cop, and he’s a gazillionaire ex-thief and the setting is futuristic New York. Despite their surface differences they have commonalities in their depths. Eve was abused and raped by her own father and she killed him when she was a child in self defense. Roarke was a street punk who survived by those artful dodger skills. Both lacked love as children but somehow overcame that to have thriving careers and ultimately finding that love they needed from each other. He is whimsical and uber brilliant, and she is steely and analytical and because of those traits they are the yin to each others yang. It’s great fun to see Eve discover her own hidden depths and Roarke to love in overwhelming waves and to see each other grow as a couple because of their trust for each other.  His gazillionaire status doesn’t play into it at all though all his gadgets, gizmos and exotic locations do make for a fun read

Click the link to purchase! Naked in Death (In Death, Book 1)
The Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews – Nevada Baylor and Connor Rogan

An Urban Fantasy series, the third,Wildfire, came out this week and I am reading right now. (I MUST get back to it!) Connor Mad Rogan, is a Prime. A mage with an extraordinary skillset that has been used in battle and earned him a certain reputation. He and Nevada cross paths when they are both investigating the same crime. He is instantly intrigued by her and although she can’t ignore how attractive he is, his reputation is pretty scary (hence the nickname “Mad”) and she isn’t interested. However, forced to work together she is drawn to his strength and honor, and see’s that young boy inside of him that suffered from a lack of love. Those things whittle away at her walls until she lets him in, and at that moment, he has her trust, heart, and hope. Connor, with all of that power never used it to win her over. I think it was the fact that he let her grow without trying to influence her, fought by her side, protected her family and ultimately that strength of passion that won her over. Oh, don’t forget their incredible chemistry. Wowza!

Click the link to purchase! Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy)
A Court of Thorns and Roses series by Sarah J Maas – Feyre and Rhysand

This YA fantasy series used misdirection and an evil enemy to move our two heroes Feyre and Rhysand together both in the fight against evil but also in a bonding love that would seem to be everlasting. Feyre, human turned Fae, is certainly put through the wringer in these books. Fighting for herself and her family, the whole time. Rhysand, introduced to the reader as the King of darkness, had a lot to overcome, both with Feyre and the reader because Ms. Maas manipulated our minds into believing he was the bad guy. As the story unfolds and we see the true nature of Rhysand and Tamlin (the red herring) our own hearts unfold, right along with Feyre’s and we bleed our love for Rhysand. Or at least that is what it felt like to me. Theirs was a union that had to overcome death, deception and war. In comparison their happy moments felt like golden moments of stolen time, sure to be taken away. Feyre, although not my favorite female character of all time, was held up as part of one of my favorite couples because of Rhysand’s grit and fortitude, and yes love and passion. He was desperately fighting for their love, we just didn’t realize it until later, and when we did, we bought it and him, hook, line and sinker.

Click the link to purchase! A Court of Thorns and Roses

The more I think on this topic the more I could go on and on and on. I left out the obvious classics like Romeo and Juliet (although they both die so really does that count?), Ron and Hermione for the Harry Potter fans, and even Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson. These four are a few of my favorites and I know my choices lean towards fantasy which may not appeal to everyone.

I would love to hear who is your own favorite fictional couple. Do they come from the classics? Contemporary romance? Or are they from fantasy novels like mine? Please comment below and lets talk.

Until next Sunday!

Deb