My Review of Absolution

Absolution
Absolution

I found Absolution by Amanda Dick to be emotional and intense. This is a story about pain, guilt, moving forward, and seeking absolution. I connected with the characters. It was told well, and I appreciated seeing each character grow in emotional maturity. Ally, the heroine of the story, becomes disabled, and I FEEL her struggles and her ability to overcome them.

At times the action moved slow for me, but I never considered abandoning it. I loved the plot and I was drawn into the story. There was a sufficient amount of angst and suspense for my liking.

This is not a romance to me; the romance is really a small part. I kept waiting for the passion and heat to start, and it didn’t. I also found the characters drinking an excessive amount of coffee; there was always a pot brewing!

Overall, this was an inspirational story with strong characters. 4 Hearts

My Raving Review of Raze by Tillie Cole

23262621I loved this book! It’s very violent and lacks serious editing. If you can get past these points and you are are a fan of mafia romances, this is great!

Kisa Volkova is the only daughter of Kirill Volkov, head of New York’s Russian Bratva. Her life is is a virtual prison. She mourns the loss of her first and only love, Luka, who was murdered. Left with no other option for the future, she is destined to marry her father’s designated successor, who we absolutely come to abhor!

What I love about this story is that we come to care for Kisa. She doesn’t like the life but she accepts it, and she is still a caring person. She knows what her father is, yet she loves him. Surprising for me was that she actually helps run certain aspects. She tries to escape the reality intermittently and find some form of salvation in volunteering at her Orthodox church.

This is where she meets a homeless man, named Raze, who is in New York seeking revenge against the man who had him imprisoned in the Russian Gulag and conditioned Raze to maim, to kill and to slaughter. I love the connection between Raze and Kisa.

“Because you belong to me, Kisa… and he pointed at my eye, then his left. “You’re a part of me, remember? God put a piece of you within me so when we were born, everyone would know we matched.”

Swoon worthy, right? Especially from a trained killer. And then there is this next comment from Raze:

“I’m closing my eyes so I can feel being inside you.” He placed his hand over his heart and rasped out, “I’ve seen too many bad things with these eyes. This, I will feel in my heart.”

This has all the great elements: Russian Mafia, a strong heroine, extreme angst, as happy of an ending as Kisa’s life permits. You will have to read it and see what happens to Kisa’s monster fiancé!

5 Hearts and one of my new favorites! 

Book Review – Among the Echoes by Aly Martinez

Friends that know me well know that I’m a HUGE fan of romantic suspense. The description of this story appealed so much to me and I wanted to rate it higher, really. The writing was good. The story was intriguing. Unfortunately, it fell short for me on a few fronts.

This story is about Erica Hill,  a witness to a murder that is taken under the witness protection program. She catches the eye of Slate Andrews,   a professional boxer, who forms a romantic attachment to her. Be warned that the first two chapters are rather disturbing similar in effect to Lovely Bones. Do not go into the story expecting Beautiful Disaster or  Real, as you will not find any exciting, in-the-ring, scenes within this book. There are some tender moments, but I do not feel the expected connection between the heroine and hero. While the hero is typically classified as an alpha male, he ultimately seems to give into her every wish. For me, the ending was rushed and not to my satisfaction.

3 Stars

Link to Goodreads –> Among the Echoes

Book Review – Remy by Katy Evans

I am a huge fan of the REAL series, which consists of Real and Mine. If you have not read it yet, I give fair warning of possible spoilers. The first two books of the series were told from the perspective of Brooke Dumas. As the name implies, in book three we receive the story from Remington Tate’s point of view.

Remy is a MMA Fighter who struggles with bipolar disorder. He and Brooke form this instant sexual attraction during one of his fights. Remy promptly researches Brooke and hires her as part of his personal training team. I adore the dependent relationship between Brooke and Remington. There is such a true, heartfelt connection between them. And while bipolar disorder can be trying on all parties involved, I find it precious how much Brooke benefits from the alpha character nature of Remy and his undying devotion to her.

I usually approach series finales told from the opposite perspective with apprehension. I held off reading this book for a long time. I really wanted to be able to give it at least four stars. It was told with as much intensity and heat as the first two stories. I still love Remy as one of my favorite book boyfriends. I also saw Brooke in a new and refreshing light from the first two books, and in a positive way.

The book fell short for me on the length of text dedicated to the beginning of their relationship. Obviously, telling the story from the perspective of someone that is manic would be truly difficult, especially for the periods when there is blackout. However, I was looking forward to this story to hear Remy’s firsthand account of his feelings when his parents show up at the farmhouse. I also wanted to hear his apprehensions with becoming a father and fearing the possibility that a child could inherit his disorder. Both of these elements were missing and I felt that the story was rushed at the end.

While I do enjoy a good and steamy story, and the first two books are some of the best material, by the end of this book I was almost as uncomfortable with the intimate scenes as the first 50 Shades of Grey, and skipping them. I was getting a little grossed out by the frequency of Brooke and Remy literally licking and scenting each other like dogs. This was still an entertaining read, and I look forward to continuing the series with other characters, but I have to give this book…

3 Stars