Crime Lord’s Paradise (Crime Lord #4.5)

crimelord

After Gavin Pyre steps down from his position as crime lord, he and Lyla focus on picking up the pieces of their lives and creating the paradise they deserve.

Publisher’s Note: This novella intersects with book 4, Awakened by Sin, so books should be read in sequence.

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This is a 128 page novella that catches us up with original couple Lyla and Gavin in the Crime Lord series. I’m pretty sure this book is the result of obsessive and persistent begging from fans, lol.

OMG. I had forgotten how completely badass Gavin is!! He is uber sexy and dark and it is overwhelmingly obvious in this instalment that Lyla is the only thing keeping him just this side of the line.

But, man! that girl has changed. She went from this annoying, facetious young woman in the introduction to the series to a fierce woman and mother, battling PTSD and poor parenting models and rising above.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this story. It felt a bit like a catch-up with old friends and will eagerly await book #5.

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Defiance (Masters of the Shadowlands #13.5)

defiance

Z’s day begins with sadness
A phone call from a dying friend leaves psychologist Zachary Grayson determined to fulfill the old survivalist’s request–a send-off that will comfort his grieving sons.

And then turns deadly
The death threat is only the beginning…because the letter isn’t a hoax. Z walks out of his office into a barrage of bullets. He can take being shot at, but when the second shot splinters the empty child-seat in his car, he’s shaken to the core. The horror of what would have happened if his little girl had been there spurs him to action.

Master Z is a Dom, a husband, a father—every instinct drives him to protect those under his care. When the police can’t catch his stalker, he must take matters into his own hands.

He must keep danger far from those he loves.
Secrecy and distance is the key. The funeral in Alaska is the perfect location, especially since Z won’t be alone. The survivalist’s sons have grown into men with lethal skills. With their help, he can trap the shooter and keep his family safe.

As long as his impetuous and all-too-observant wife, Jessica, doesn’t discover he’s using himself as bait.

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Defiance is a novella in the Shadowlands series. It serves to give an update on original couple – and fan favourites – “Z” and Jessica, and also to introduce a new contemporary romance series the author will premiere in January. I really like that she is starting her new series in this manner. Even if I wish she was writing certain other books for characters desperately in need of a HEA!

This short story is listed as #13.5 in the Shadowlands series, but I think it should also be listed as 0.5 in the new series. The style of writing is much more romance than erotica. There are sex scenes between Z and Jessica, but nothing like we’re used to seeing in the Shadowlands.

Defiance is a contemporary romance with military themes. It was enjoyable and I think it will flow well through both series, although regular readers might not be prepared for the lack of steam. Ms. Sinclair is one of the few authors I know who can take the short word count necessary in a novella and still produce a cohesive, nuanced story with character development, emotions and background characters.

There is a secondary character, DeVries, who pops up. He is from Mrs. Sinclair’s Dark Haven series. It was nice to see these universes blending again… I had a dark satisfaction throughout the story, knowing that DeVries hates the cold and got stuck working in Alaska to protect Z.

I am still devastated that my favourite author is moving away from the BDSM scene – at least in her books. However, I am looking forward to following up with these new characters in her upcoming Alaskan series. They might not be Doms, but they sure are alphas!

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The Rebel’s Secret (Ride Hard #3)

ride hard

She was determined to claim her revenge. He was determined to claim her.
 Michaela Armistead had only revenge in mind when she stepped into that frontier saloon. Disguised as a boy, she had been on her father’s murderer’s trail since the end of the War Between The States. What she hadn’t counted on was Major John Thomas Brice, commanding officer of the nearby fort, taking her prisoner!

One look at those flashing violet eyes and Major Brice knew this was one little rebel who needed to be taken in hand. He would be damned if he allowed her to continue on her dangerous quest for revenge. She needed to learn, in this part of Texas, his word was law. If that lesson came at the end of a leather strap, then so be it.

Problem was, his feisty Rebel was not going to give in without a fight!

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The Rebel’s Secret is the third and final book in the Ride Hard series. Like the others, it could be read as a standalone. They are each set on the western frontier, shortly after the end of the American Civil War.

Michaela is tracking down her mother and stepfather, both cruel people who murdered her father and conspired to murder Michaela. She is intent on avenging her family when she runs into Major Brice.

This is definitely a case of instant love, especially from the hero’s perspective. He is intent on wedding and bedding his fierce and fiesty little lady, but it takes more than a couple of spankings to tame her!

This was my least favourite book in the series. For some reason, I just didn’t click with the characters and the lack of plot development in the book itself, and the series as a whole, was irritating.

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The Gunfighter’s Pursuit (Ride Hard #2)

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Emma Fairfax has a secret. She is not the prim and proper new schoolteacher this small Arizona town had been expecting from the East. Emma chased that poor woman away when she robbed her stagecoach and shot a man in cold blood. It wasn’t Emma’s fault. He would have shot her first. Now she was in a bind. No money. No place to go. A wanted criminal. Murderess! Her only way out was to pretend to be Miss Glendolene Rimmel, respectable schoolteacher.

And it was going remarkably well… until he rode into town.

Jackson Horn noticed two things straight away about the town’s pretty little schoolmarm. The sweet sashay of her hips when she walked… and that she was hiding something. As a Confederate soldier turned gunfighter after the war, he earned his money tracking down men for their bounties and hiring out his gun to the highest bidder. So he was good at spotting liars and thieves. He didn’t give a damn about the coin, what he really wanted was information on the man who framed him for murder. Each bounty, each kill brought him closer to his revenge.

The schoolteacher’s secret started out as a mild curiosity. A way to get closer to the straight-laced beauty’s charms.

Then she tried to kill him… twice.
Now Horn is determined to learn her secret. Determined to rein in her stubborn spirit and get her to accept his discipline and protection. He might even be falling in love with the feisty beauty… if he can get her to stop trying to kill him long enough!

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This is the second book in the Ride Hard series. It is set in the west, shortly after the American Civil War ended. This book could easily be read as a standalone.

Emma is terrified when she first meets Horn, convinced that he is a lawman tracking her down, ready to hang her as a murderess. Luckily for her, he is more of a bounty hunter – a hired gun – who has no intention of prohibiting a future with the lady he has fallen for.

The Gunfighter’s Pursuit is a short novel that I read in one sitting. It contains a couple of scenes of dubious consent, but I would not consider the novel to be “dark”.

If you are looking for a quick and easy read with dirty scenes and insta-love, this is one book I would recommend for a cozy evening in bed.

****

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The Cowboy’s Revenge (Ride Hard #1)

cowboy

When Mason caught sight of the beautiful woman with honey-brown hair and violet eyes, he could think of only one thing…revenge.

For three longs years during the War Between the States, he was forced to wait to learn who had murdered his brother. The wait was over. He would take everything from the man; his wealth, his power…his daughter.

Annabelle was getting as far away from Vulture City, Arizona and her step-father as she could, even if she had to marry the boring banker’s son to do it. On the morning she planned to elope, a handsome stranger shows up claiming her step-father lost her in a poker game and she was now his.
 She will fight him tooth and nail every step of the trail even as his punishments get harsher and more creative.

Contains anal play, domestic discipline, and creative cowboy-style punishments.

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I am definitely on a kinky cowboy kick right now.

The Cowboy’s Revenge is a historical erotica set in the frontier, shortly after the American Civil War. This series consists of three short stories, each about 120 or so pages in length.

Zoe Blake is the queen of short, sexy stories that will leave your ladies bits tingling. There isn’t too much I can comment on the plot, without giving everything away. The perils of a short novel, I suppose. Mason is definitely an alpha male, intent on taking his revenge out on the stepdaughter of his enemy. Little did he know that she would be a beautiful young woman, full of spirit and receptive to his particular brand of kink.

There is an element of capture fantasy to this story that may turn off some readers. For me, it is more the lack of internal struggle in the heroine that dropped my review down from 5 stars to 4. I wanted to see her struggle with the idea of blending pain and pleasure, of essentially being kidnapped by the hero in the beginning … and this just didn’t happen.

If you are looking for some historical erotica that can you read in an evening, this could me the story for you.

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Taken by the Warriors by Marlee Wray

taken

First she was taken. Now she will be shared.

After the princess she serves is given as a mate to a powerful Ketturan warrior, Falise soon ends up as an unwilling passenger on a spacecraft headed for a far-off world. More disturbing still, she quickly discovers that as far as her captors are concerned, her body no longer belongs to her.

As the princess is stripped bare and claimed roughly by the ship’s captain, four of his companions set their eyes on Falise. The brutishly handsome barbarians plan to share her and use her in every manner possible, but first they must train her. She will learn to obey without question and take everything they give her or she will be punished in ways more shameful than she could have ever imagined. But when the journey is over, will she still want to return home?

Publisher’s Note: Taken by the Warriors is a stand-alone book which is the second entry in the Owned and Shared series. It includes spankings and sexual scenes.

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This book is much kinkier and more hardcore than the previous book in this “series”, Owning Their Pet. I was surprised by the very different vibe. The author introduces a second alien race, different from the one introduced in Owning. A Princess is forced to marry their leader as part of a trade agreement, and she is abducted by them before the marriage takes place.

The book follows the trials of the Princess and her handmaid, Falise, and is told from both their points of view, as well as two male points of view. There are scenes of dubious consent and vaginal and anal “trains”.

I hate to refer to erotica as “book porn”. I hate that term but it fits this story, IMHO. Taken by the Warriors didn’t have a love story – at least for me – and was such raunchy scene after raunchy scene. The plot barely served to explain the move from one sexcapade to another.

I found it difficult to keep track of the varying characters and the constant changes in the POV character. Overall, it almost felt like a completely different author than the one I had just read.

I will read the third announced book, but I am hoping that it is much more similar to Owning Their Pet, or I doubt I will continue with this author. This book was not for me.

*Please note that while I am referring to these two books as being part of a series, they are only loosely connected.

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Owning Their Pet by Marlee Wray

kitten

In this world, there are owners and there are pets.

When twenty-year-old village girl Melsint is purchased for use as a pet by Lord Evston Calex, she soon discovers that she will be shared with his brother, Commander Rocurt Calex. Her strict new owners quickly make clear that they plan to take their beautiful, virgin pet hard and often and they will not hesitate to punish her harshly for even the slightest hint of defiance.

Despite her shame at being treated as mere property, Melsint cannot hide her response to their painful, humiliating chastisements and rough, demanding use of her body. But as her training grows more intense by the day, she is left to wonder if she will ever be more than just a pet.

Publisher’s Note: Owning Their Pet is a stand-alone book which is the first entry in the Owned and Shared series. It includes spankings and sexual scenes.

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I discovered this book while searching for something new on Kindle Unlimited the other day and decided to check it out.

Owning Their Pet is a super kinky book! There is plot, but the book is certainly more heavily focused on physical intimacy than story development.

I thought that this book would be a MfM romance, with equal time given to each of the brothers, but there was one who definitely had more page time. No further details in case of a spoiled ending 😉

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and the ending was not what I initially expected from reading the synopsis online. I plan to read the “companion book” (technically, they are considered standalones but take place in the same world), as well. However, I do wish that the author had taken extra time to further the plot and character development as well. For me, it is so important to be able to envision a fully functioning society, especially for stories that take place in alternate universes.

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