Tag Archives: Lori Handeland

Doomsday Can Wait by Lori Handeland

Overview

Title: Doomsday Can Wait
Author: Lori Handeland
Series: Phoenix Chronicles #2
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: AngelsDemonsFae, Paranormal fantasy, Urban fantasy
Pace: Fast
Format: Novel
Year: 2009

Thoughts

It’s been a long while since I read Any Given Doomsday. So it did take a little time to get into this… mostly because I kept forgetting what had happened in the past book. But, once I got my head back into the world building… I was hooked.

One of the things I still find weird about this series is the whole sexual empath thing. Its certainly enjoyably unique, but I’ve been mainlining contemporary romances lately. And this really doesn’t fit the bill. Again, something that took me a little while to get my head around. But, I am looking forward to seeing how that will evolve in the following book.

I liked the idea of Liz and Jimmy reuniting in Any Given Doomsday. But the more I got to know Sawyer in this, the more I enjoyed their dynamic. The complexities of the relationships in this world got very heavy very quickly in Doomsday Can Wait. I can’t wait to see how they will develop further into the series.

I was completely taken by the relationship complexities in this novel. But there was a lot of action as well. Liz’s desire to win the day, no matter the cost and the fight between good and evil was pretty intense. It added a brilliant and much needed element of darkness to this fantastic story.

<- Any Given DoomsdayApocalypse Happens ->

Image source: Goodreads

Stroke of Midnight by Sherrilyn Kenyon, Amanda Ashley, L.A. Banks & Lori Handeland

Overview
Image result for book cover stroke of midnight

Title: Stroke of Midnight
Author: Sherrilyn Kenyon, Amanda Ashley, L.A. Banks & Lori Handeland
In: Stroke of Midnight (Sherrilyn Kenyon, Amanda Ashley, L.A. Banks & Lori Handeland)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal romance, Short story collections, Vampires, Werewolves
Dates read: 12th January – 12th February 2020
Pace: Medium
Format: Anthology
Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperback
Year: 2004
5th sentence, 74th page: The fact that she was warm and welcoming.

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Synopsis

In an unseen world that lurks in the sahdows, they roam the night – feral, passioante, and dangerous. And when their world touches ours, a primitive desire takes hold, leaving mere mortals powerless in its wake…

Four of romance’s most intriguing authors have come together to create a mesmerizing anthology – unforgettable tales of vampires, shapeshifters, and werewolves. At the heart of these deeply sensual tales are everyday people facing extraordinary events – men and women thrown together by fate and an irresistible desire. In this world, your eyes can betray you as myth becomes reality, curses are vanquished, and love is the only weapon that can stand in the face of evil. In this world, there is a moment when passion and forbidden desire collide at the… STROKE OF MIDNIGHT

Thoughts

I absolutely adored this sensual, shapeshifting paranormal romance collection. There was just something about it that was completely impossible to put down. That got my heart pumping. That made me want to run to the nearest book shop and buy all the books. And spend days on end just reading. There was just something that made me fall head over heels with this collection.

The stroke of midnight is an eerie point, a tweening time when you’re kind of between times. The four novellas in this collection perfectly reflected that eerie feeling you get when you happen to be conscious at midnight. Not that the things that begin at midnight in this collection are necessarily good… they’re actually kind of concerning and dark. A little worrying. But still… they’re kind of mystical and great.

This entire collection is fantastic. If you like paranormal romance and things that go bump in the night… it’s the collection that you’re going to want to add to your shelves. It’s definitely one that I’m going to want to read again and again.

 <- Red Moon Rising ReviewWinter Born Review ->

Image source: Amazon

Red Moon Rising by Lori Handeland

Overview
Image result for book cover stroke of midnight

Title: Red Moon Rising
Author: Lori Handeland
Series: Nightcreature #1.5
In: Stroke of Midnight (Sherrilyn Kenyon, Amanda Ashley, L.A. Banks & Lori Handeland)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal romance, Urban fantasy, Werewolves
Dates read: 13th February 2020
Pace: Fast
Format: Novella
Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperback
Year: 2004
5th sentence, 74th page: “What’s my next assignment, sir?”

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

Novelist Maya Alexander’s peace is shattered when she is stalked by a Navaho skinwalker who has taken on the guise of a wolf. Her only hope is the mysterious Clay Philips. In his arms, she seeks protection-but as the red moon rises, no one is safe from the danger that lurks nearby…

Thoughts

I’m definitely hooked on this series. There is just something about actually having werewolves as the bad guys that is such a great departure from what I typically read. Adding in a skinwalker in this novella just made me fall even harder for this series. Now I just have to find the next book in the series… it’s buried in one of my many piles of books at the moment I believe.

I love that Maya isn’t really considered a typical beauty. There is something I found a bit “eh” about the continuous repetition of a seriously beautiful woman with an average looking man. But, like in Blue Moon, there’s a bit of a reversal here. The woman isn’t someone who thinks that they’re gorgeous. They’re just not quite that supermodel look… which is what most of us are like. So someone with hips slightly too big and a body that isn’t toned because she sits down all the time? Yeah, I can get behind that!

Although this is a great romance in and of itself, it also starts to seriously set up the rest of the series. Now there is a spy within the hunters, and the lead in this gives up his hunting duties to be a cyber hunter… I’m seriously hoping that he is as helpful and awesome as I’m expecting as this amazing series unfolds!

 <- Blue Moon ReviewHunter’s Moon Review ->

Image source: Amazon

Blue Moon by Lori Handeland

Overview
Image result for book cover blue moon lori handeland

Title: Blue Moon
Author: Lori Handeland
Series: Nightcreature #1
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal romance, Urban fantasy, Werewolves
Dates read: 5th – 11th January 2020
Pace: Medium
Format: Novel
Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperbacks
Year: 2004
5th sentence, 74th page: I could have savored another cola in the Sportsman, which was what I usually did when I ate there.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

By the light of a blue moon, danger prowls –
Miniwa, Wisconsin, is under siege, but not by the usual summer tourists. The area’s normally shy wolf population has begun stalking human prey, and their victims have been disappearing…or worse. Something is happening in the woods. Something no one can explain…

and desire is unleashed…
Officer Jessie McQuade has seen plenty in her years on the force – but nothing as intriguing as the gorgeous, naked man she encounters while tracking a rogue wolf. Professor Will Cadotte is a Native American activist. He’s also the only man capable of distracting Jessie from her work. And for a cop, distraction – no matter how pleasurable – can be deadly. It’s against Jessie’s better judgement to accept Will’s help in her investigation, yet she soon finds herself doing exactly that – and more. Will’s dark, penetrating eyes see into a part of Jessie’s soul she never knew existed. It’s exhilarating…and terrifying. Now, as a town’s deepest secrets come to light, no one is safe: not friends, lover, or strangers. And as Jessie follows a trail to the shocking truth, she’ll have to decide who she can trust when the moon is full…

Thoughts

Yeah. This book was brilliant. And fun. I could put it down though, which made me happy, because I have a number of other things that I needed to do. Unlike other books which seem to absorb my whole consciousness (they’re sometimes good), this one was always in my mind. But never all consuming. It let me take my time over the book which I normally wouldn’t be able to do. And, taking that extra time made me feel somehow more connected to Jess and Will.

I read a lot of fantasy books, and especially love stories which feature werewolves. This is the first book in a really, really long time that actually featured werewolves as an evil entity. I loved the change. Especially since there is now going to be an entire, evil werewolf army that is now on the loose. Alright, one evil culprit was killed off. But there are going to be so many more… I also didn’t actually guess who the culprit was going to be… which was a whole other level of surprising.

Most stories that you read which feature a romance has a gorgeous woman, and she’s most likely a virgin or just inexperienced. Thank god, Handeland didn’t go down this route. Actually, she kind of went with the flipside. Instead, they’re both experienced (but not in any insane way in either direction). Yet, the woman is the one who is considered plain and way too normal to attract a gorgeous man, which is what Will is. I love that Will’s looks are also his point of insecurity. One of the things that I often see today is the fact that men won’t “settle” for the plainer women in their lives, thinking that they can “get” a supermodel… it was nice that this expectation was completely flipped.

I don’t have much to do with Native American culture. I don’t have many books which feature it, and it’s something that I want to expand on in my shelves. I do have at least one more book that features such a topic (Stormwalker), but it isn’t something that I often come across. I love that alongside the Native American character and rituals, there was also an incredibly intense history of Nazi experimentation and hunting the evils of the world. I seriously can’t wait to see what the future of this series holds!

 <- Shadow of the Moon ReviewRed Moon Rising Review ->

Image source: Goodreads

My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding edited by P.N. Elrod

Overview
Image result for my big fat supernatural wedding book cover

Title: My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding
Author: P.N. Elrod, L.A. Banks, Jim Butcher, Rachel Caine, Esther M. Friesner, Lori Handeland, Charlaine Harris, Sherrilyn Kenyon & Susan Krinard
In: My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding (P.N. Elrod)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal fantasy, Romance, Short story collections
Dates read: 30th September – 30th November 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Anthology
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Year: 2006
5th sentence, 74th page: “You and your” – his eyes flicked toward Ian, who was clambering over the railing – “your intended can wait up on the quarterdeck.”

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

Werewolves, vampires, witches, voodoo, Elvis—and weddings

An “ordinary” wedding can get crazy enough, so can you imagine what happens when otherworldly creatures are involved? Nine of the hottest authors of paranormal fiction answer that question in this delightful collection of supernatural wedding stories. What’s the seating plan when rival clans of werewolves and vampires meet under the same roof? How can a couple in the throes of love overcome traps set by feuding relatives—who are experts at voodoo? Will you have a good marriage if your high-seas wedding is held on a cursed ship? How do you deal with a wedding singer who’s just a little too good at impersonating Elvis? Shape-shifters, wizards, and magic, oh my!

Thoughts

I started reading this collection just before my best friend got married. I kind of figured that it was just a suitable kind of anthology to be reading when I too, was experiencing much of the wedding insanity that tends to surround such a fun day. And, it was nice to know that no matter what happened… nothing could go as badly wrong as many of the weddings in this collection.

There is something about weddings that seems to bring out the best and worst in people. So much pressure and stress for just one day which always blows my mind… but most people don’t have to deal with the supernatural. The characters in these stories do. And some of the battles they face are just… well, ridiculous. And difficult. And so much fun to read about.

Most of the authors in this collection I have on my shelves. Which made this a really good collection to read. Not only did I not then add a hundred different books to my wish list, but I often had the pleasure of revisiting worlds that I already have on my shelves. And the few I didn’t recognise? Well, they’ve quickly found their way on my to buy next list…

 <- “…Or Forever Hold Your Peace” ReviewSpellbound Review ->
Image source: Amazon

Charmed by the Moon by Lori Handeland

Overview
Image result for my big fat supernatural wedding book cover

Title: Charmed by the Moon
Author: Lori Handeland
Series: Nightcreature #5.5
In: My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding (P.N. Elrod)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal romance, Urban fantasy, Werewolves
Dates read: 31st October 2019
Pace: Fast
Format: Short story
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Year: 2006
5th sentence, 74th page: “I’m not supposed to see you wearing the dress until the wedding-“

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

It’s the eve of their wedding, and something just doesn’t quite feel right. Until they find the love charms… and everything seems to start making sense. So, do they truly love each other? Or was it just someone’s magic getting involved?

Thoughts

I freaking adored this short story. Which really isn’t surprising since I tend to love everything written by Lori Handeland. She manages to write paranormal romance stories which are sweet and get the pulse racing. But they’re also not over the top. Most of the time, the romance is about pursuing a truth and justice. The kind of relationship that I prefer to be in – something that is about a great connection, lots of sparks, but also a sense of each other. Actually, Charmed by the Moon is more potent at this than any other story I’ve read by her thus far.

One of the aspects of this story that I truly loved was the idea that even though the couple loved each other and were about to get married, they were still willing to risk it all. Risk it all to make sure that what they felt was true, and not the results of a spell that had been cast. It would be easy to go along the easy route, but they chose the hard one so that they could have something that was true, and not simply a figment of their imagination.

The last thing I probably loved about this story was the fact that it’s part of the Nightcreature series. I would have been a little devastated if it wasn’t, so I’m definitely glad that it is part of a larger series. After all, I don’t want the story to end there!

 <- The Wedding of Wylda Serene ReviewTacky Review ->
Image source: Amazon

No Rest for the Witches by Mary Janice Davidson, Lori Handeland, Cheyenne McCray & Christine Warren

Overview
Image result for no rest for the witches book cover

Title: No Rest for the Witches
Author: MaryJanice Davidson, Lori Handeland, Cheyenne McCray & Christine Warren
In: No Rest for the Witches (Mary Janice Davidson, Lori Handeland, Cheyenne McCray & Christine Warren)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal fantasy, Paranormal romance, Short story collections, Witches
Dates read: 14th July – 9th September 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Novella
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Year: 2007
5th sentence, 74th page: She thought of an even better, more relevant question.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

From broomsticks to black magic, leather-clad warriors to love potions gone wrong, here you’ll find four stories of supernatural sex and suspense from some of today’s hottest bestselling authors.

MaryJanice Davidson – “The Majicka”
Life’s a bit crowded for Ireland and her roommates–a fairy, a werewolf, a vampire, and now a zombie…especially when a mysterious man walks through the door. Will there be any room left for love?

Lori Handeland – “Voodoo Moon”
For Devil’s Fork-based FBI Agent Dana Duran, the only way to fight a supernatural serial killer just may be to embrace life. But little did she know that voodoo could be so viciously sexy…

Cheyenne McCray – “Breath of Magic”
San Francisco’s witches are in an epic battle. But even if Sydney can use her sultry ways and ancient Druid powers to save the world, can she risk losing her heart to handsome warrior Conlan?

Christine Warren – “Any Witch Way She Can”
A desperately lonely witch decides to take matters of love into her own hands when she casts a cosmic personal ad…only to find that the perfect formula for love is a strange brew indeed.

Thoughts

This was one of those random books that I picked up in a second hand shop. I had no idea what it was about. Really what genre it belonged to, and only vaguely recognised the names of the authors who had contributed. I really just liked the name of the collection, it was a fun little pun that made me quite intrigued…

From beginning to end, this collection has women who pack an amazing punch. They’re strong, they’re powerful and they’re constantly finding themselves in a spot of trouble. All things which I thoroughly love in a good, strong protagonist. The fact that sex, lust and magic are all mixed in with each other to create some incredibly fun and often times awkward stories just makes it that much better. Mostly the sex and lust. A girls gotta get her kicks where she can…

All four of these novellas, like many other similar collections have sent me down the path of finding new beloved authors and series. They’re always a good way to escape for only a short amount of time when I have to be responsible, but long enough that I get completely sucked into a whole new world. The fact that these were all paranormal fantasy and filled with a good dose of romance just made me sink all the quicker into these stories. Definitely one that I would suggest to anybody who likes their witches with a bit of extra steam!

 <- Any Witch Way She Can ReviewThe Majicka Review ->
Image source: Goodreads

Voodoo Moon by Lori Handeland

Overview
Image result for no rest for the witches book cover

Title: Voodoo Moon
Author: Lori Handeland
Series: Nightcreature #7.5
In: No Rest for the Witches (Mary Janice Davidson, Lori Handeland, Cheyenne McCray & Christine Warren)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal romance, Urban fantasy, Werewolves
Dates read: 1st – 2nd August 2019
Pace: Fast
Format: Novella
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Year: 2007
5th sentence, 74th page: He had tattoos running up both arms and another winding up the side of his neck.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

For Devil’s Fork-based FBI Agent Dana Duran, the only way to fight a supernatural serial killer just may be to embrace life. But little did she know that voodoo could be so viciously sexy…

Thoughts

I’m really surprised that I haven’t read more stories which feature the Voodoo religion. After all, it seems to come up in almost every TV series I’ve watched. Although that’s mostly as a method of killing… I’ve never read a story which has voodoo as the central storyline – one which involves the manifestation of the evil, and the way in which to rid the world of it.

Balance was a key idea throughout this story. It was the imbalance of nature and the world which bought the evil spirit to the small town. And it was recreating this balance (in the most fun of ways) which bought about a happy ending. As someone who has spiritual beliefs, discussions on balance and the way the world twists and turns is so incredibly important, so of course, I just completely lapped up this story. And then started researching how much it was going to cost to get the first few books in this series… because you know, self-control.

Paranormal romance stories which feature a cop of some sort as the lead always capture my fancy immediately. I love criminal shows, don’t read the books as much because I get a little scared, so reading a paranormal version that I know isn’t going to happen to me is a perfect middle ground. The use of a female lead who is an FBI agent investigating some really horrific and confusing deaths… you really can’t go wrong. Now I just have to wait until I have some spare cash to buy Blue Moon and the rest of the series…

 <- The Majicka ReviewBreath of Magic Review ->
Image source: Goodreads

Dates From Hell by Kim Harrison, Lynsay Sands, Kelley Armstrong & Lori Handeland

Overview
Image result for dates from hell book cover

Title: Dates From Hell
Author: Kim Harrison, Lynsay Sands, Kelley Armstrong & Lori Handeland
In: Dates From Hell (Kim Harrison, Lynsay Sands, Kelley Armstrong & Lori Handeland)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal romance, Short story collections, Urban fantasy
Dates read: 22nd June – 11th July 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Novella
Publisher: Avon Fiction
Year: 2006
5th sentence, 74th page: Jerking in sudden decision, she dropped the pen and pulled out the Yellow Pages, looking for the biggest insurance ad that wasn’t connected to one of Cincinnati’s older vamp families.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

She thought her date was out of this world. Acutally, he was not of this world…

We’ve all been on bad dates, dreadful experiences that turned out to be uniquely memorable in the very worst way. But at least our partners for these detestable evenings were more or less… human!

Now Kim Harrison, Lynsay Sands, Kelley Armstrong, and Lori Handeland – four of the very best writers currently exploring the dangerous seduction of the supernatural – offer up dating disasters (and unexpected delights) of a completely different sort: dark, wicked, paranormally sensual assignations with werewolves, demon lovers, and the romantically challenged undead. Sexy, witty, chilling, and altogether remarkable, here is proof positive that some love matches are made someplace other than heaven.

Thoughts

Normally I love collections like this because you can read one novella, finish it, put it down and walk away. I did manage to do this… but it was quite a bit more difficult than I had anticipated. I had already read something by every one of these authors, and so I knew that what was just around the corner was going to be fantastic. And it was this knowledge that made it nigh on impossible to stop thinking about this storyline.

There is something about stories of horrible dates that I kind of love. Not because I’ve ever been on one (I met my other half when I was seventeen and have been stupid in love since). But I can imagine the horrors of what pretty much everyone must go through. It’s a way to live vicariously through something. Adding in the extra aspect of fantasy and the supernatural just made it all the more fun. And a little bit more alien than even a first date is to me.

Anybody who loves paranormal fantasy or romance is going to love this collection of novellas. If you also enjoy heroines who are strong and independent and more than likely to get themselves into trouble… then this is even more likely to make you deliriously happy. Like it did me… now I need another collection like this to while the nights away…

 <- Dead Man Dating ReviewUndead in the Garden of Good and Evil Review ->
Image source: Harper Collins Publishers

Dead Man Dating by Lori Handeland

Overview
Image result for dates from hell book cover

Title: Dead Man Dating
Author: Lori Handeland
In: Dates From Hell (Kim Harrison, Lynsay Sands, Kelley Armstrong & Lori Handeland)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Demons, Paranormal romance, Urban fantasy
Dates read: 11th July 2019
Pace: Fast
Format: Novella
Publisher: Avon Fiction
Year: 2006
5th sentence, 74th page: His face was fierce, his eyes dark, intense as they stared into mine.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

On their first date, Kit goes too far with Eric, shot by bystander Chávez, then wakes to no blood, no body.

Thoughts

You know a story’s going to be good when it starts out stating that she was on a date with a dead man. Literally. Completely, totally and utterly, stone cold. Dead. The fact that a mysterious, Latino man dives in to save the day and the woman is stubborn enough not to let him escape. Well, it was going to be a fantastic story from the very beginning.

Handeland seems to have a way that is both witty and serious with her writing. As Kit struggles to escape the seductive demon chasing her and sort out her feelings for the demon hunter in her life, she also manages to be a little bit pithy about the world around her. The tragedy of her past, the terrifying circumstances of her present, nothing dulls Kit’s ability to find humour in everything and a way to move forward. Which of course, made this story completely impossible to put down. I even walked into the edge of the doorway, I was so desperate to finish this and make my dinner at the same time.

The construction of the world in this novella is fantastic. I love the layering of real world issues and realities (calling a twenty-something year old virgin rare for starters) with a demon hunting reality. Many of us often claim that the world is kind of going to shit, and Handeland seamlessly takes this idea one step further with the discussions of a coming apocalypse. Now I just have to find some more works by her to fill up my happy little, addicted brain.

 <- Chaotic ReviewDates From Hell Review ->
Image source: Harper Collins Publishers