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Monthly Archives: May 2012

Bared to You (Crossfire #1) by Sylvia Day


Bared to You (Crossfire, #1)

Bared to You (Crossfire #1)

by Sylvia Day
Paperback, 360 pages
Published April 3rd 2012
Rating: 6/5 Stars 🙂
Description:
Our journey began in fire…
Gideon Cross came into my life-like lightning in the darkness—beautiful and brilliant, jagged and white-hot. I was drawn to him as I’d never been to anything or anyone in my life. I craved his touch like a drug, even knowing it would weaken me. I was flawed and damaged, and he opened those cracks in me so easily…Gideon knew. He had demons of his own. And we would become the mirrors that reflected each other’s most private wounds… and desires.

The bonds of his love transformed me, even as I prayed that the torment of our pasts didn’t tear us apart…..

Review:
HOLY. FREAKING. GOD. THIS. BOOK. IS. BEYOND. AMAZING. This book was absolute perfection for me!! It had me swooning, drooling and panting over Gideon Cross and had me reading for the better part of it with the world’s biggest grin on my face. It was the perfect blend of heart warming, HOTNESS, and seriously tortured Alpha hero (and heroine).

The story is told from the perspective of Eva Hammel, a 24-year-old girl who comes from money but wants to make it on her own in the world. She chooses to start at the bottom and work her way to the top and gets a job in an advertising agency where she meets the guy who owns the company she works for (and pretty much everything in NYC) Gideon Cross and it’s just an instant connection between then. Sparks fly from the first glance. And things go from there.

Gideon Cross is just pure perfection in my eyes! He is tortured, passionate, controlling, but isn’t afraid to admit he f*cked up, tender, possessive, gorgeous , absolutely and utterly in LOVE with his girl… ❤ ❤ Gah! my heart is bursting here! ❤
He’s so messed up but he’s trying his absolute best to be everything his girl needs him to be. I love how on the outside he’s this unobtainable larger-than-life god but on the inside, he’s just a man who wants to be loved by his girl.

“Oh, Eva.” He rubbed his cheek against my damp face. “I must’ve wished for you so hard and so often you had no choice but to come true.”

“What do you want, Gideon?” I asked softly.
He caught me to him and cupped my cheek in one hand. “I want to keep feeling the way I feel when I’m with you. Just tell me what I have to do. And give me some room to screw up. I’ve never done this before. There’s a learning curve.”

There are a lot of wonderful book couples out there but the thing that made me just LOVE this book was how functional Gideon and Eva were. Despite both having very messed up pasts, and both having their fair share of f*ck ups, they worked througheverything functional and passionately in a way that deeply warmed me heart. I loved how open and honest they learned to be with each other. They both made mistakes but they were understandable mistakes, nothing that make me want to throw my Kindle at the wall, nothing where I couldn’t understand the reaction they had, and they always talked everything through after. I loved how their love for each other made them stronger than any problems that came their way. It was so refreshing and heart warming.

[This relationship] is going to be a lot of work, Gideon.” I warned him.
“I’m not afraid of work.” He was touching me restlessly, his hands sliding over my thighs and buttocks as if caressing my bare skin was as necessary to him as breathing. “I’m only afraid of losing you.”
I pressed my cheek to his. We completed each other. Even now, as his hands roamed possessively over me, I felt a thawing in my soul, the desperate relief of being held – finally – by the man who understood and satisfied my deepest, most intimate desires.”

I loved how neither of them were man-whores or virgins before meeting each other. Not that I have a problem with either one. But it was refreshing and realistic that they had both been in a normal amount of relationships for a couple of mid-twenty year olds.

I also LOVED the side characters. Eva’s boss Mark and his partner Steven were delightful and fun. Her bi-sexual room-mate and best friend Cary was just so lovable. He was the ultimate big brother character with his own set of problems – I really really hope he gets a HEA. He so deserves one! We don’t get to see much of his past, but you can tell its really heart-breaking. I loved how he knew Eva so well, he just knew when something was wrong just by looking at her.

“I want there to be happily-ever-afters for the f*cked up crowd. Show me the way, Eva honey. Make me believe.” ~Cary

And did I mention how utterly HOT this book was?? I swear I was fanning myself from the moment they met (which was pretty much right at the beginning) till the very last page.

For those of you wondering about the connection between this book and Fifty Shades, I’d say they have about as much in common as Fifty Shades does with Twilight. Sure the basics are similar, mega-billionaire hero who is possessive of his girl… wait, no, that’s it actually. The BDSM element is utterly UNlike Fifty. There is no contract or anything like that, and it only comes up about 70% of the way through the book, and only briefly at that. Its more about the sexual control, but even then, it’s not about the kinky f*ckery the same way that Fifty was. But don’t let that deter you, this book is HOT, SEXY, deeply emotional, and a serious page turner…. I found this book more deeply emotional than Fifty and I loved Gideon even more than Christian which is saying a lot cuz all the Fifty books are on my 6 star list.

“You forget who submits, Eva,” he said gruffly. “I’ve given up control for you. I’ve bent and adjusted for you. I’ll do anything to keep you and make you happy. But I can’t be tamed or topped. Don’t mistake indulgence for weakness.”

… and gah, the library scene!!! *dies* seriously HOTTTTT

I just loved seeing these two people from such tortured and broken pasts coming together, finding peace in each other, making things work… its a beautiful story!!

“I love you, Gideon.”
“God.” He looked at me with something that resembled disgust. Whether it was directed at me or himself, I didn’t know. “How can you say that?”
“Because it’s the truth.”
“You just see this”—he gestured at himself with a wave of his hand. “You’re not seeing the fucked-up, broken mess inside.”
I inhaled sharply. “You can say that to me? When you know I’m fucked up and broken, too?”

The ending was in a perfect place. Happy, resolved but leaving me biting my nails waiting for October to pleeeeease get here faster!!

We’ll never be over, Eva. ~Gideon

This is a MUST read!! I’m buying it in hard copy to put on my favorites shelf and know for sure that I’ll be rereading it many times!! *swoon*

 
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Posted by on May 31, 2012 in Crossfire

 

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The Gathering (Darkness Rising #1) by Kelley Armstrong


The Gathering (Darkness Rising, #1)

The Gathering (Darkness Rising #1)

Hardcover, 359 pages
Published April 12th 2011 by Harper (HarperCollins), New York (first published April 5th 2011)
ISBN 0061797022 (ISBN13: 9780061797026)
My Rating: 5/5
Description:
Sixteen-year-old Maya is just an ordinary teen in an ordinary town. Sure, she doesn’t know much about her background – the only thing she really has to cling to is an odd paw-print birthmark on her hip – but she never really put much thought into who her parents were or how she ended up with her adopted parents in this tiny medical-research community on Vancouver Island.

Until now.

Strange things have happened in this claustrophobic town – from the mountain lions that have approached Maya to her best friend’s hidden talent for “feeling” out people and situations, to the sexy new bad boy who makes Maya feel . . . . different. Combine that with a few unexplained deaths and a mystery involving Maya’s biological parents and it’s easy to suspect that this town might have more than its share of skeletons in its closet.

Review:
Maya lives on Vancouver Island in an isolated town called Salmon Creek. The St. Clouds own a medical research facility there and there’s a very small group of people who live there working at the facility. Maya’s father is the park warden, and Maya helps him with wounded animals. She has a way with most of the animals, even the old cougar Marv.

Her life is mostly normal, but strange, unanswered questions surround Maya and her town. Her best friend Serena died a mysterious death a year before the story. An old woman calls her a witch when she sees Maya’s birthmark tattoo. A reporter starts sneaking around town and no one believes she’s really there to write an article about being a teen in a small town.

It’s interesting trying to write a short blurb for this because honestly, not that much happens in the first half of the book, and yet I couldn’t put it down! Kelley Armstrong’s characters are so likable and well-characterized. The main ones all have a distinct personality, and I found myself liking all of them. Her writing flows really well. I could see this small town perfectly–the forests, the kids, everything.

Okay, I say nothing happened, but that’s not really true. It’s just that the author brings up a lot of questions and doesn’t answer them until the second half. . .or not at all. Maya starts to get to know this new guy named Rafe. At first she brushes him off, but they really start to hit it off after a few talks. She and her friend Daniel investigate the reporter. She has strange encounters with animals–seeing what they feel, telling them what to do. The second half is more fast-paced as things start to be revealed. You can predict some of it, and other parts come out of left field, which is cool.

I really liked this story! Like I said, the characters were great. I really liked Maya. I liked the romance between her and Rafe, although I’m still wondering if there’s anything at all between her and Daniel. Maybe next book she’ll explore that a bit more.

One of the things I really appreciated was the morals of the story. And I don’t mean it had a message, I just mean people were decent and there wasn’t anything that made me question Kelley Armstrong’s belief in gender roles. Maya was a strong female, and although Daniel was completely chivalrous, he wasn’t condescending to any of the women in the book. He’s a perfect gentlemen, actually, as is Rafe, without treating the women in the book like they’re inferior. When Maya suspects she was drugged at her birthday party, she was ready to drop the suspecting male in a second.

Armstrong was conscious about issues that teens face and her characters were totally sensible, even honorable, about it. This is probably a book conservative parents wouldn’t mind their kids reading–she’ll use “Rafe cursed” instead of real words and the book is light on violence and sex while still being realistic and still being a really strong story.

Long story short: READ IT. I cannot WAIT to read the sequel. I keep starting these series’ even though I know I’ll have to wait forever for the next one.

 

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Fifty Shades Freed (Fifty Shades #3) by E.L. James


Fifty Shades Freed (Fifty Shades, #3)

Fifty Shades Freed (Fifty Shades #3)

by E.L. James
Paperback, 555 pages
Published January 19th 2012 by The Writer’s Coffee Shop Publishing House
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Discription::
When unworldly student Ana Steele first encountered the driven, damaged young entrepreneur Christian Grey it sparked a sensual affair that changed both their lives irrevocably. Shocked, intrigued, and ultimately repelled by Christian’s singular sexual tastes, Ana demanded a deeper commitment; determined to keep her, Christian agreed.Now, together, they have more – love, passion, intimacy, and a world of infinite possibilities. But Ana always knew that loving her Fifty Shades would not be easy, and being together poses challenges neither of them ever anticipated. Ana must somehow learn to share Christian’s opulent lifestyle without sacrificing her own integrity, identity or independence; Christian must somehow overcome his compulsion to control, and lay to rest the horrors that blighted his past and haunt his present.Just when it seems that together their love can conquer any obstacle, misfortune, malice and fate combine to make Ana’s worst nightmares come true. Alone and desperate, she must face down the poisoned legacy of Christian’s past.Seductive, shocking, sad and funny, Fifty Shades Freed is the compelling final volume in the Fifty Shades trilogy.

Review:

~This review is for all 3 books in the Fifty Shades Trilogy~

WOW…I just absolutely love all 3 books in this trilogy. I love them so much that not only do I have all 3 books on my Kindle but as soon as I finished reading Fifty Shades Freed earlier today I went online and ordered all 3 in paperback.

Now I’m sitting here trying to put into words how much I love the Fifty Shades of Grey Trilogy without sounding like a babbling idiot but I don’t think that’s going to happen. So let the babbling commence…

I ABSOLUTLY LOVE TO READ. In fact I read so much that my husband has threaten to send me to reading rehab where I’ll be forced to watch TV in hopes of breaking my reading habit. But now that I’ve educated him about “hard limits” he has stopped threatening me about rehab and has now offered to buy me a Kindle Fire or an Apple iPad …I got the iPad.

The reason I love to read is because of books like the Fifty Shades of Grey Trilogy. The kind of books that put you on an emotional rollercoaster ride while transporting you to a different world. Out of all the books I’ve read, and there have been hundreds of them, the Fifty Shades Trilogy books are among my favorites. I was hooked from the very beginning and totally fell in love with Christian Grey and his fifty shades of fucked-up. I also love the chemistry between Christian and Ana and the journey they went on together as a couple and by themselves. I loved how their relationship evolved from being based on kinky fuckery mind blowing sex to unconditional, take your breath away, gut wrenching, passionate, soul stirring, true love. I laughed out loud while reading these books and I also cried. A couple of things that I loved about the books and had me laughing out loud were the emails between Christian and Ana. When the emails first appeared in Shades of Grey I made the mistake of only reading the main body of the email and not the signature line. Once I caught on to what was going on, I had to go back to the first one and re-read them and ended up laughing some more. Another thing that had me laughing out loud was Ana’s inner Goddess. OMG, she was freaking hysterical. Talk about your comic relief. I can totally see her having her own line of greeting cards based on her.

****SPOILER ALERT ****

I was totally unprepared for how much these three books would pull at my heartstrings and have me in tears… and at one time cause me to sob. That one time was when submissive Christian showed up. When I read that I literally gasped out loud. I couldn’t believe it…It was soo wrong. I found myself holding my breath as tears started streaming down my face silently begging Christian to get up, to move, to say something, do something …ANYTHING as if I was kneeling right there with Ana fighting for Christian’s life.

I don’t think I’ve ever thought about a character from a book after I’m done reading it as much as I’ve thought about Christian Grey. If it were possible to will a character out of book into our reality as a real breathing human being, than Christian Grey would be standing in my bedroom wearing nothing but his soft ripped “playroom” jeans with the top button casually undone, holding his grey silk tie in one hand and a riding crop in the other, asking me what my safe word is…It’s vanilla I tell him (but I have no plans on using it). 🙂

Now for some shameless begging …

Ms. James I’m begging you to please, please, please, don’t let this be the last we hear of Christian Grey. I need more of him. Three books are nowhere near enough to write about him. Please you have to write some more. I don’t care if they’re Fifty Shades of Baby Pooh, or Fifty Shades of Paint Chips. As long as they have Christian and his fifty shades of fucked – upness and kinky fuckery …Then all will be right in the universe. 🙂

 

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Quotes


Sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment.

Rumi

 

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Fifty States of Grey [INFOGRAPHIC]


Fifty Shades of Grey continues to top best-seller lists after almost three months of dominance: The trilogy sold 10 million copies in six weeks, there are long wait-lists at libraries and bookstores, and even Saturday Night Live spoofed the book’s popularity in a skit! So, Goodreads took a look at the US stats behind the phenomenon. Where are the “Grey States”?

The country is pretty clearly divided. More readers in the eastern half of the US are devouring the sexual adventures of Christian and Anastasia. The states with the highest readers per capita are located primarily in the Tri-State and New England area: New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island, and New York.

If you define “Grey States” by their average rating of the book, the landscape changes. The regions with readers who give Fifty Shades of Grey the highest average ratings are the Southern and Plains states—Mississippi, Tennessee, Oklahoma, and Nebraska.

Fifty Shades of Grey has given some readers a new taste for erotica, and we’ve found a jump in interest in similar books on Goodreads. Just recently, Penguin’s Berkley Books imprint snatched up Sylvia Day‘s self-published novel, Bared to You, which has generated 2,500 reviews in the past two months. Goodreads member Aestas loved it, saying “This book was absolute perfection for me!! It had me swooning, drooling, and panting over Gideon Cross and had me reading for the better part of it with the world’s biggest grin on my face.”

Other books potentially joining the sultry summer reading list are Gabriel’s Inferno by Sylvain ReynardRock Me by Cherrie LynnCaptive in the Dark by C.J. Roberts, and The Reluctant Domby Lesli Richardson. These books are a mix of older titles and new releases, but one thing they have in common is that they are all finding new readers thanks to the Fifty Shades craze.

Looking back, one of the first big milestones for Fifty Shades of Grey was being a finalist for theGoodreads Choice Awards way back in November last year. It will be interesting to see if a new title like Bared to You will be a contender for this year’s awards.

What about you? Are you a proud citizen of a “Grey State”? Will you be savoring any other erotica titles this summer? Is it getting hot in here or is it just these books?

 

 

 

FOR MORE INFO:

http://www.goodreads.com/blog/show/365-fifty-states-of-grey-infographic?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=editorial&utm_campaign=infographichttp://bit.ly/JGcamq

 
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Posted by on May 28, 2012 in Extra

 

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Cryptic Cravings (Vampire Kisses #8) by Ellen Schreiber


Cryptic Cravings (Vampire Kisses, #8)

Cryptic Cravings (Vampire Kisses #8)

by Ellen Schreiber
Hardcover, 211 pages
Published May 17th 2011 by Katherine Tegan Books
My Rating: 5/5
Description:
The morbidly monotonous Dullsville has finally become the most exciting place on earth now that Raven is madly in love with her hot vampire boyfriend Alexander, and a crew of vampires has taken residence in Dullsville’s old mill. Raven discovers Jagger‘s plan to open a new club, The Crypt, right here in Dullsville. But is it her dream come true, or her worst nightmare? Raven and Alexander have to figure out what the nefarious vampire has in store for Dullsville’s teen and vampire population. Can Raven convince Jagger to listen to her plans to make the Crypt the morbidly magnificent dance club it could be? Will it be safe for mortals and vampires alike?And as Sebastian and Luna’s relationship heats up, Raven wonders about her own amorous fate: Will Alexander ever turn her? Does he crave her and does he want to spend eternity together? And what does she really want?

With cryptic secrets and cravings, this eighth installment in the Vampire Kisses series is a romantic and mysterious thrill ride.

Review:
 
There’s a new club in Dullsvile! It’s called the Crypt. Jagger thought it was a good idea to set up here. Raven also thought it was great! But there was a problem. Jagger wanted to make a club for mortals. And underground, for Vampires. Alexander, Raven, Sebastian didn’t seem happy about that! Because  it would bring problems. In the end, after a few convincing from His fellow vamp. He agreed to make a club for mortals only! 😀 Raven & Becky helped with the Decorations. Jagger agreed. Becky found out they were Vampires.Raven and Alexander’s Birthdays were coming up! Raven was thinking what gift to give. She gave Alexander a vial with her blood in it. As a present. Alexander was happy! 🙂 Alexander gave some kind of “eternity ring” to Raven. It was beautiful. Raven was happy as well. Onyx kinda fell for Jagger. Scarlet fell in love with Trevor. Sebastian fell in love with Luna. Jagger has been really nice these days. When Raven went home one day, her birthday.. Trevor got her a gift. Raven thought the present must have something awful inside. But it doesn’t. It was a beautiful silver bracelet with her name. She was happy & surprised that Trevor would give her such a thing! The next day at school. She met Trevor! They didn’t fight or bicker today! Raven said thanks to Trevor for the gift! And Raven had the urge to hug him because  she was sooo happy! Trevor got really surprised. It was really obvious that Trevor liked Raven though! 😛 hehe!

Club opening came! Phoenix went in and talked to Jagger! they were talking about the club. Phoenix said he couldn’t wait it’ll also be where vamps can have some fun. But Jagger said no. He doesn’t open it for vampires. only mortals. I was shocked! O_O” Jagger was keeping to his word! OMG! 😄 haha! anyway, Phoenix went out to leave.. Raven followed.. They Kissed. Sebastian saw them! caught in the act. Phoenix left. Raven went in flustered and guilty. She couldn’t tell Sebastian that Phoenix was actually Alexander =)) lol.. when Alexander came back! He kissed Raven and asked how did things go.. and Sebastian was saying things that would make Raven guilty. Alexander knew though! he was just teasing Raven. haha!

Raven & Alexander’s shared Birthday party came on the 3rd day at the Crypt! 😄 Jagger set it up! Even had those mock binding things or whatever! Sebastian and Luna were first! Then Raven found out they were on Sacred Ground. Sebastian was shocked and walked away angry. Leaving Luna alone sobbing… Poor Luna 😦 Alexander was then again disappointed with Jagger & Luna. A few umm days? Raven & Alexander thought Sebastian was leaving but said he wasn’t in fact he bought a small condo. They were happy about that! Alexander left for awhile.. His cell buzzed. Raven curious looked at it. It said something like too bad he didn’t came back to Romania and misses him. Raven then thought that Alexander has another girl.. When he came back! She asked who Stormy was.. Alexander said it was his Sister!! 😄 hahaha! I cant wait to meet her! 😀

 

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Love Bites (Vampire Kisses #7) by Ellen Schreiber


Love Bites (Vampire Kisses, #7)
Love Bites (Vampire Kisses #7)
by Ellen Schreiber
Hardcover, 179 pages
Published May 18th 2010 by HarperCollins Canada / Other (first published April 29th 2010)
My Rating: 5/5
Description:
As a mortal girl dating a vampire, Raven knows that love isn’t always easy. Now that Alexander‘s parents have returned to Romania, Raven and her dreamy vampire boyfriend are happy to resume their cryptic romance.But soon another visitor comes knocking: Sebastian, Alexander’s best friend, arrives for a stay at the mansion. At first Raven is wary, then thrilled–this is the perfect chance to learn more about her darkly handsome boyfriend and his past. Raven has been wondering whether Alexander will ever bite her and make their love immortal, and Sebastian could be her guide to the love habits of Alexander and his kind. But when Sebastian falls for a particular Dullsvillian, will another mortal beat Raven to the bite?

With suspense, danger, and a fabulous vampire party, this seventh book in the bestselling Vampire Kisses series continues the exciting nocturnal romance of Raven and Alexander.

Review:

If I was fifteen and could travel to the world in a book, I’d want to hit up Dullsville in Vampire Kisses and be best friends with Raven, Alexander, and Becky. I’d want to make fun of Trevor with Raven (the hottest, most popular guy in school and Raven’s nemesis), hang out at the mansion after sunset under the watchful eye of Creepy Man, and join the gang at Hatsy’s for hamburgers and shakes.I’ve never been the morbid Goth type. Cemeteries, ripped dresses and black lipstick, or anything remotely scary is not my thing. But in Vampire Kisses, all that is stereotypically associated with paranormal romance and gothic culture is turned on its head. VK, though, is not a parody. Unlike some funny paranormal romance books that poke fun at the genre, Vampire Kisses has fun with the genre.

Who says vampires have to be brooding hundred+ year olds who prey on the blood and hearts of young, impressionable, weak girls? Alexander is as chivalrous as they come (he always takes Raven on the most swoon-worthy dates!), and Raven, although a hopeless romantic, is also smart and tough. Raven is the only Goth in Dullsville and therefore an outsider, but she is quite okay with being different. She doesn’t wallow in self-pity, nor does she deal with her less-than-stellar social standing by lashing out and being super angsty or aggressive. She will stand up for herself (she has the funniest comebacks when Trevor or others try to make fun of her), but she is also as sweet as can be and incredibly loyal to those she loves.

With Raven and Alexander, it was pretty much love at first sight. There wasn’t too much “should we be together, should we not” in their relationship. The problems they face emerge from new characters that are introduced in each book, the inherent differences between their separate lifestyles (mortal and vampiric), and the issue of Raven’s turning (it’s connections to virginity and sex, btw, are not lost on me).

Each book in the Vampire Kisses series sees the introduction a new vampire character. The plot of each book is based on what happens when that character comes to Dullsville. Each new character has a distinct personality and causes their own kind of trouble. The trouble they cause may be intentional, or just a consequence of being a vampire. In Love Bites, the new character is Alexander’s best friend from Romania, Sebastian Camden. Sebastian has traveled the world looking for true love, but can’t seem to find it — until he visits Alexander in Dullsville, and is immediately captivated by a human girl. This is majorly problematic for a couple of reasons. First, the girl already has a boyfriend and doesn’t know vampires exist. Also, Sebastian is impulsive and doesn’t have nearly as strong of willpower around human blood as Alexander does. Uh oh.

At the beginning of each VK book is a quote from the new character. It is always funny and a play on vampirism. In Love Bites, the love-sick Sebastian confesses: “I hope I find her soon, too, Raven. I’m starved to death.” Lol!

There are a few other plot points in addition to Sebastian’s love problems that arise in Love Bites. Alexander worries about not fitting in with the rest of Dullsville, which he is afraid might lead someone to discovering his secret. Raven has to contend with keeping Sebastian’s true identity a secret from the human girl he likes. She also has to juggle being a good friend to Becky with keeping her best friend safe from the vampires that visit Dullsville. There’s also maintaining the safety of the humans at a vampire party that Trevor and the whole school unwittingly crash. (Btw, Trevor doesn’t get as much time in Love Bites as other VK books, but his interactions with Raven are as hilarious as always.) Then, of course, there’s the constant issue of turning Raven into a vampire — which she wants more than ever.

Love Bites delivers what I expect from a Vampire Kisses novel: hilarity, campy plotting and characterization, sweet romance, mystery, and adventure. I heart this series like you can’t even believe. Thank you, Ellen!!

 

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