New Release and Review for Consumed by J.R. Ward

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the popular Black Dagger Brotherhood series comes a brand-new novel about arson investigator, Anne Ashburn, who is consumed by her troubled past, her family’s scorched legacy, and her current case: chasing a deadly killer.
Anne Ashburn is a woman consumed…
By her bitter family legacy, by her scorched career as a firefighter, by her obsession with department bad-boy Danny McGuire, and by a new case that pits her against a fiery killer.
Strong-willed Anne was fearless and loved the thrill of fighting fires, pushing herself to be the best. But when one risky decision at a warehouse fire changes her life forever, Anne must reinvent not only her job, but her whole self.
Shattered and demoralized, Anne finds her new career as an arson investigator a pale substitute for the adrenaline-fueled life she left behind. She doesn’t believe she will ever feel that same all-consuming passion for her job again–until she encounters a string of suspicious fires setting her beloved city ablaze.
Danny McGuire is a premiere fireman, best in the county, but in the midst of a personal meltdown. Danny is taking risks like never before and seems to have a death wish until he teams up with Anne to find the fire starter. But Danny may be more than a distraction, and as Anne narrows in on her target, the arsonist begins to target her.
From the creator of the bestselling Black Dagger Brotherhood, get ready for a new band of brothers. And a firestorm.

Consumed by J.R. Ward
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a great kickoff to a new series. It takes us into the world of firefighters, EMTs, Arson Investigators with some sides of SWAT.

The two main protagonist, when the book starts off, are both die hard adrenaline junkies who skirt the line on almost having death wishes. For years they had been flirting with each other but had only one night of passion recently. Their playing loose with the rules at a warehouse fire has dire consequences for both. Almost a year later after Anne’s world is forever changed from that day she has just started a new career as a arson investigator. Danny McGuire who was one of the best fighter fighters the 499 after that day started down a reckless self destruct path over his guilt of that fateful day.

Anne used her recovery time to find the courage to accept the things she could not change and the courage to change the things she could (yes I just quoted from the serenity prayer). She decides to go into her new job with the same tenacity (and a little recklessness) she had as a firefighter looking into a string a warehouse fires. In addition to starting the new job she and Danny also reconnect igniting their old attraction. But Danny’s self destructive ways, Anne’s insecurities, and threats against her life due to her investigation into the warehouse fires all threaten to fragile bond they are trying to reestablish.

We are introduced to a very large cast a characters who I’m hoping will be getting their own book. Anne’s brother Fire Chief Tom Ashburn being one for sure.

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New Release – Desperate Girls by Laura Griffin

Defense attorney Brynn Holloran is right at home among cops, criminals, and tough-as-nails prosecutors. With her sharp wit and pointed words, she has a tendency to intimidate, and she likes it that way. She’s a force to be reckoned with in the courtroom, but in her personal life, she’s a mess.
When a vicious murderer she once helped prosecute resurfaces and starts a killing spree to wipeout those who put him behind bars, one thing becomes clear: Brynn needs to run for her life.
With no help from the police, Brynn is forced to take matters into her own hands, turning to a private security firm for protection. But when Brynn defies advice and gets involved in the investigation, even the former Secret Service agent assigned to protect her may not be able to keep her safe. With every new clue she discovers, Brynn is pulled back into the vortex of a disturbing case from her past.
As the clock ticks down on a manhunt, Brynn’s desperate search for the truth unearths long-buried secrets and reignites a killer’s fury.

Desperate Girls by Laura Griffin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A new series kicks off with a manhunt for an escaped vicious murderer turned vigilante killer who is on the quest for revenge against those in the legal world who he feels did him wrong.

Fans of the Tracer series will remember Liam Wolfe and his wife Tara from Shadow Fall. Liam runs Wolfe Security and this new series will be about the men and women that work for him and the clients they are tasked with protecting.

Clients – Defense attorney Brynn Holloran and her co-counsel Ross Foley. They were part of the prosecution team team that put James Corby away. Now people that were part of convicting him are being murdered and Brynn and Ross know they are on his list.. Their boss wanting to take no chances hires Wolfe Security to protect them.

Wolfe Security – Erik Morgan is tasked with running the security detail for Brynn and Ross. He is a former marine who then become a secret service agent that resigned after an op went bad. That mistake from the past makes him even more dedicated to protecting the clients. Along with Erik we meet the rest of the team that make up Wolfe security who I assume will be getting future stories.

There are multiple plots going on at the same time. The hunt for Corby which involves a task force of cops and US Marshals. The current trial Brynn is head defense lawyer for trying to prove her client innocent all while being protected by Wolfe Security.

I have to say that it took me a while to warm up to Brynn – she was not the most likable character at the start of the book. She is a force to be reckoned with in the courtroom but outside of it she was a bit of a pushy witch.

With a great cast of secondary characters and a surprising twist at the end this was an enjoyable read and start to a new series. Look forward to more.

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New Release and Review for Racked and Stacked by Lorelei James

Opposites don’t just attract in the West–they sizzle–and Wyoming has never been hotter than in the latest sexy Blacktop Cowboys® novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Hang Tough.
Growing up with three older brothers, Larissa “Riss” Thorpe defines the term tomboy–a moniker that never mattered to her until she crossed paths with sexy cowboy playboy, Ike Palmer. His declaration that he prefers his women soft and feminine is the one benefit to becoming his business partner. Since Riss is obviously not his type, there’s little chance they’ll mix business and pleasure when they’re in close quarters on the road together.
Former cattle broker Ike Palmer was ready for a new chapter in his life when he partnered with Riss, a contrary redhead who lords her mechanical abilities over him at every turn. Ike raised his three younger sisters; he knows a thing or three about how women work. The problem is…Riss is unlike any woman he’s ever met.
With the odds stacked against them, Riss and Ike will have to choose between the stubbornness that keeps them apart and the fiery attraction that could lead to something more…

Racked and Stacked by Lorelei James
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

For the sake of their friends upcoming wedding, which they are best man and bridesmaid, two people who have never gotten along call a truce until after the wedding. Even though they called a truce the snarky comments were still a plenty which provided an abundance of humor. In a move that was surprising to both, Ike Palmer offers his home to Larissa Thorpe to recovery after an accident she has after the wedding.

What was a surprising twist for me was the hero, Ike Palmer. This author is known for her Alpha males so it was a change for the man to more of a beta male with some Alpha traits. Larissa is what I would call an alpha female with beta traits that she rarely lets others see. The longer these two were together the more you see they complement each others traits.

This being book 9 in the series there were lots of couples to catch up with along with those crazy Mud Lillie’s. This was an enjoyable enemies to friends to lovers romance.

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New Release and Review for Good Little Girls by Rita Herron

Fear becomes a woman’s greatest weapon in a heart-pounding novel of suspense from the USA Today bestselling author of Pretty Little Killers.
Tinsley Jensen survived the torturous clutches of an elusive masked killer dubbed the Skull, only to be held hostage by her nightmares. She’s terrified of leaving her cottage on Seahawk Island, knowing that the madman is still out there. FBI special agent Wyatt Camden knows it too. He may have rescued Tinsley, but her captor got away. Now he’s driven by guilt, the need for vengeance, and the desire to protect—at any cost—the woman he’s come to love.
Too paranoid to deal with the police, the media, and her sister, Tinsley finds solace in an online support group. She’s too broken to let even Wyatt into her life. But when the threats against Tinsley escalate and her friend disappears, Tinsley is forced out of her self-imposed seclusion to finally face her fears. Wyatt is the only man she can trust to help her, and to save a killer’s latest catch. Now, Wyatt just wants to finish the job he started.
But that’s all the Skull wants too.

Good Little Girls by Rita Herron
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Whew.. Now that was a suspenseful book… If I suffered from anxiety I’d need a pill after that.. FYI.. This is NOT a standalone book. You need to have read the first one.

Man where to start.. Tinsley Jensen is the sole survivor of the serial killer known as the Skull. Since her escape she has been a shut in from fear since he escaped capture.

FBI Agent Wyatt Camden was one of the agents that was on her case when she went missing and was the one that rescued her but was almost gravely injured by the Skull. Now fully recovered he still feels a sense of guilt that they were unable to capture the Skull and keeps in close contact with Tinsley even though she skittish around people, especially men.

The 1st anniversary of when Tinsley was taken is coming up and everyone is on edge knowing that the Skull is probably going to come back and take her. This right here is when your anxiety levels start going up.. Not going to give too much away but the author did a spectacular job with the build up that was also accompanied by other side plots that were just as thrilling.

I cannot wait to see what’s next in this insane series..

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BOOK 1
Pretty Little Killers (The Keepers #1)Pretty Little Killers by Rita Herron
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Jam-packed suspense with multiple plot threads full of serial killers, rapist, child molesters and the victims. The cherry on top of that is there is a vigilante killer brutally killing the sickos..

The two FBI agents leading the search have emotionally scarring pasts both separately and together. They try to keep their pasts out of the investigation but that turns out to be impossible.

FBI Agent Hatcher McGee wife was murdered by serial killers the Skull. He was separated from her at the time, heading for divorce, but the guilt eats at him that he wasn’t there in time to save her or his partner Wyatt Camden from getting serious injured.

FBI rookie Korine Davenport witnessed her father’s death when she was just 5. Since then she has always wanted to catch the person that killed him. She went into law enforcement eventually applying for the FBI. One of her instructors was Hatcher and one night of passion between them left tons of emotional scars for different reasons for each of them. Since their boss doesn’t know about their history he thinks nothing of teaming them together to try and find the vigilante killer which makes for a very uncomfortable partnership between them.

Along with the person issues of Hatcher and Korine and their search for a killer, there is also the group of women who call themselves The Keepers. These are women in predominant professions who want justice for women who were victims of heinous crimes. Question is are they the ones killing or is there someone else exacting revenge. Also in the midst of the madness is the hunt for a serial rapist. His victims also play a part through the book.

There was a lot going on in this book from the first page to the last that concludes with a shocking revelation. I am curious as to where this series will go with future books. Cant wait to see what the next one is about.

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New Release: Built to Last by Julie Ann Walker

In the epic conclusion to the BKI series, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Julie Ann Walker delivers her biggest bombshell yet!

Welcome to Black Knights Inc.
What appears to be a tricked-out motorcycle shop on the North Side of Chicago is actually headquarters for the world’s most elite covert operatives. Deadly, dangerous, and determined, they’ll steal your breath and your heart.

After a mission-gone-sideways forces Jamin “Angel” Agassi to change his identity, he’s determined to bring down the world’s worst crime syndicate kingpin once and for all. That’s going to be the easy part. Keeping Interpol agent Sonya Butler from discovering who he really is – and blazing another trail into his heart – is the challenge.

Built to Last (Black Knights Inc., #12)Built to Last by Julie Ann Walker
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The final book in the Black Knight series finally gives us Jamin “Angel” Agassi’s story – a man who has had to change his appearance multiple times along with his name all for his country. His background has always been shrouded in mystery and now we learn that he sacrificed true love for his country over ten years ago.

Through out the series the team has been trying to find a international terrorist who is part of a large crime syndicate known as Spider. After years of searching they have finally found him and Angel goes in undercover only to find out that the Interpol agent he loved and made believed that he died is Spider’s right hand woman. What he doesn’t know is she is deep undercover like he is but with all of his surgeries to change his appearance over the years she doesn’t know that he is he man she fell in love with a decade ago and has been mourning ever since.

Lots of angst and suspense with this part of the story. Along with that the author also brings to conclusion Ace and Rusty’s story though not without its own fare share of turmoil and angst and even some humor – Rusty’s mom is a hoot. This being the last of THIS series the author gave a great wrap up each of the 13 couples and what they would be doing now that BK is no more.. Been a great ride…

Black Knights Inc Series:

New Release – A Merciful Silence by Kendra Elliot

In the fourth book of the Wall Street Journal bestselling series, FBI agent Mercy Kilpatrick must unlock the mystery of a mass murder, and the secrets of its silent witness…
For Mercy Kilpatrick, returning to rural Oregon has meant coming to terms with her roots. Raised as a prepper, Mercy is now relying on her survivalist instincts to defend her town from the people the law can’t reach. But this time, an investigation calling up a dark past for her and police chief Truman Daly may be hitting too close to home.
A rainstorm has uncovered the remains of five people—a reprise of the distinctive slaughter of two families twenty years ago. Except the convicted killer is in prison. Is this the case of a sick copycat, or is the wrong man behind bars? One person might have the answer. The lone survivor of the decades-old crimes has returned to town still claiming that she can’t remember a thing about the night she was left for dead. As the search for the truth becomes more dangerous, Mercy fears that the traumatized woman may not have buried her memories at all. She might be keeping them a secret. And there’s a price to be paid for revealing them.

A Merciful Silence by Kendra Elliot
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A Merciful Silence doubles the trouble with the duel plots of a vicious family killer and anti-government extremists. FBI Agent Mercy Kilpatrick and her boyfriend Police Chief Truman Daly have their hands full with both and neither come away without suffering emotional and physical harm. Mercy’s ordeal through out the book has her by the end making some big decisions with her personal life – something she had been reluctant to fully commit to because of her past. The body count was high in this one and the nature of the killings gruesome. My favorite kind of suspense 🙂

Bonus… It always a treat when an author decides to mix in her other series characters. For the investigation into recently uncovering of the remains of five people, Dr Victoria Peres, who is a forensic anthropologist, and Dr Lacey (Campbell) Harper, who is a forensic odontologist, from the Bones Secrets series are called in to help identify the bones. I would love to have a series with just these two and the cases they sol

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The Body Counter by Anne Frasier

From a New York Times bestselling author comes the chilling follow-up to the Thriller Award winner The Body Reader.
Months after discovering the mastermind behind her own kidnapping, Detective Jude Fontaine is dealing with the past the only way she knows how: by returning to every dark corner of it. But it’s a new, escalating series of mass slayings that has become her latest obsession at Homicide.
At first, Jude and her partner, Detective Uriah Ashby, can see no pattern to the seemingly random methods, the crime scenes, or the victims—until they’re approached by a brilliantly compulsive math professor. He believes that the madman’s next move is not incalculable; in fact, it’s all part of a sequential and ingenious numerical riddle. His theory is adding up. The body count is rising.
But when the latest victim is found in Jude’s apartment, the puzzle comes with a personal twist that’s going to test the breaking point of her already-fragile state of mind. For all she knows, her number may be up.

The Body Counter by Anne Frasier
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Our two broken detectives are back with a dark and twisted tale of a killer using the Fibonacci sequence – the sequence goes 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13 and so on.. So as you can imagine the body count – hence the title of the book – is pretty high in this suspenseful thriller. There are lots of twists and turns through out the book – both with the investigation and with the introduction to a new character who should make future books very interesting.

Homicide detective Jude Fontaine is still dealing with emotional trauma of past. One on hand she is a tough, motorcycle riding excellent detective – on the other hand she wakes up every night screaming from nightmares. The author chooses a very unorthodox way for Jude to deal with demons in this book but yet you can understand her reasoning.

Her partner Uriah Ashby is also still trying to get over the grief and guilt of his wife’s suicide. Even as hard as it is for him he is helping the community to start a new program for suicide prevention. He and Jude’s bond as friends and partners also grows stronger everyday. These two broken halves fit perfectly together and hold the other up when needed.

This author has a great voice in the suspense/thriller genre and I can’t wait to see where she is going to take these characters next and what twisted killer she will next have Jude and Uriah tracking down in future books.

If you haven’t read Book 1,  I recommend before reading The Body Counter

The Body Reader (Detective Jude Fontaine Mysteries #1)The Body Reader by Anne Frasier
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Well written Crime fiction story with very flawed leads but yet also with one of the most interesting heroine’s I’ve read in while.

Police detective Jude Fontaine has lived in hell for the past three years. Kidnapped, abused and tortured in a cold dank basement she had all but given into her fate until one day that same fate gave her the split second she needed to escape. But after what she had been through, once she gets back out into the real world part of her wonders if she wasnt better off in her little room that had been her prison for all those years.

Things I really liked about this book was Jude’s character. She was very unique. She had emancipated herself from her rich political family at 16 (for a very good reason). She went on to become a Homicide detective because she believes in justice due to the circumstances of the death of her mother. Pre-kidnapping she thought she had a great life with her job and a boyfriend thought she loved. Afterwards she sees that so much of her life had been fake. She now walks a fine line of being emotionally broken and a kickass women determined to not let past horror define her.

The other main character in the book is Detective Uriah Ashby (what a unique name). He became a homicide detective after Jude’s kidnapping so he never knew the woman she was before. Uriah has his own tragedy from his personal life that makes him almost as flawed as Jude is. But from the moment Uriah meets Jude, right after she escapes, he becomes her greatest supporter along with eventual partner (when the police department hires her back) and tries to help her acclimate back into the real world.

When bodies of young women start turning up Jude and Uriah’s investigation starts to unravel a long reaching conspiracy of missing girls with surprising tie backs to her own abduction.

The story flowed very well and this author has created some great unique characters but one thing that bugged me was the use of a too familiar trope on the who the kidnappers and killers were and the reveal/conclusion to that was a bit of a let down too. I still recommend this book as it was a very different read that did captivate you from the start.

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