It’s Monday, so it must be Reader’s Choice day….Oh wait, it’s Tuesday. Happy belated Memorial Day! And welcome to the rare Tuesday Reader’s Choice Giveaway.
Here’s how Reader’s Choice works. Just let me know in the comments which of these sounds most promising to you, and you could win it—or any other book of your choice up to US$15! I will post the winner on Sunday.
And now for the new releases…(not ALL of them, mind you, but the ones I thought might be of most interest to readers of this blog). Note that inclusion does not constitute my endorsement of any book…unless I say so. I’m picking them based on cover and blurb….because in many cases, I do think you can tell a lot about a book by its cover…
Dark Lord of the Night (Dark Destinies #2) by S.K. Ryder
The only thing standing between a new vampire and eternal darkness is the mortal woman who claims his heart. …Youngling vampire Dominic Marchant struggles to master his deadly instincts as he hunts the urban jungles of South Florida. He keeps his hunger confined to the blood of the guilty with help from Cassidy Chandler, a human woman who can literally touch his soul. Their love is his last remaining tether to humanity, which is tested beyond endurance when powerful forces from his past introduce him to terrifying new appetites he could never have imagined….His efforts to protect Cassidy from the depravity overtaking him push their relationship to the brink of shattering. Refusing to give up on the man who is her heart, she takes an unthinkable gamble to save him. But is she fulfilling an ominous prophecy that ensnares them both? Or has she become just another pawn in a cunning game played by the five-thousand-year-old vampire who claims Dominic as his own?…Desperate to rescue her from a fate worse than death, Dominic strikes a perilous bargain with his greatest enemies only to face an impossible choice—embrace his darkest self . . . or destroy the woman he cannot live without.
Dark Territory (Benjamin Ashwood #3) by A.C. Cobble
After uncovering the existence of an ancient, secret organization, Ben must track down its whereabouts to enlist help in a battle for the fate of humanity. He goes behind enemy lines and faces certain danger. He must convince the powerful elites that the looming threat to Alcott is real. …If the opposing factions do not put aside their differences and join forces, the fate of mankind may be sealed. With what Ben knows, the solution is obvious. But the murky political waters of Alcott are not easy to navigate. The inexperienced young man from the country will have to act quickly before it is too late for everyone.
Destroyer (Elemental #7) by Shannon Mayer
“My name is Larkspur, and I am an Elemental.” My people use the power of the earth to sustain life and defy our enemies. I should be at my father’s side as a royal princess. But as a half-breed, bastard child, that isn’t going to happen. Taken away by the last Spirit Walker, I am mean to train with him so that I can finally stop the false mother goddess and her plans to rule both humans and elementals. I am meant to train so that I can meet her on even ground, but training takes time. Time is not something we have. The world is coming apart at the seams as the humans rain down destruction upon their own kind and the supernatural world. The false mother goddess is hunting down the most powerful elementals to take the last of their power, and through it all, the secrets of who I truly am begin to spill upward. I must find the strength to stop the mother goddess, and to save our world, but which aspect of my heart will hold me up and what will it cost me in the end?
Flux (Flux #1) by Marissa Farrar
I was just like any other twenty-two-year-old until a horrific tragedy changes everything. When I wake up in hospital with barely a scratch, strange things start happening. At first I believe I’m being haunted by my lost loved one, until a leather-jacketed man called Hunter confronts me. Turns out the paranormal events are coming from within me, and the terrible incident has released an ability I have no control over. And I’m not the only one. …Hunter takes me deep beneath my home city of San Francisco to become part of a secret group of people known as The Kin. Each member of The Kin has a special talent—the ability to control things with our minds. But others are onto us—men who desire to use us for their own gains. Can I protect the people I have left, or will my powers be my downfall?
Guardian of the Thorn (Immortal Blood #3) by Elena Bryce
Holy Grail, and sworn to protect it and the other sacred relics through the ages. For more than five hundred years, Hector has quietly been the protector of the Holy Thorn and the surrounding area, which is a safe haven for paranormals. Until the young King Arthur arrives, bringing with him his beautiful and intriguing sister, Morgan Le Fay. For the first time in his long life Hector begins to fall in love, but his loyalty will be tested as the Thorn is threatened, and Hector must make some impossible choices. His duty should come first, and an old rival has no such qualms. Fantasy adventure entwined with folklore, myth and a legendary romance.
House of Blood (Vampire Project #2) by Jonathan Yanez
Sloan returns to New Hope a victor but at what cost? A death of one of their own weighs heavy on her shoulders. But things are about to get a lot worse, as in, the first ever werewolf is one of her friends, worse. Trying to understand his new “condition” leads down a twisted rabbit hole to a group called the Order. A secret faction of elite citizens in New Hope who have taken it upon themselves to create the perfect soldiers, or what history will soon call, vampires. Joined by her friends, Sloan fights against this new threat. But there can be no victory without sacrifice. Chalking up a win may mean Sloan transforming into something this world is only beginning to understand.
Light Fantastique (Aether Psychics #2) by Cecilia Dominic
At the Théâtre Bohème, danger decides who takes the final curtain call. Hailed as the most talented actress of her generation, Marie St. Jean has something more to her ability than mere talent. She loses a bit of her soul to each role. When the ghostly spirit of the theatre promises her an easy fix, she’s tempted by the chance to finally live a normal life. Unfortunately, the man she’s drawn to is the last one to settle for normal. But with the Prussians surrounding Paris, there’s no escaping that temptation, either….Violinist Johann Bledsoe thought he’d left his disgrace in England, but a murder outside the Théâtre Bohème makes him wonder if he’s been exposed. Another reason not to stick around once the siege ends, even if Marie fascinates him. More murders, steam-powered ravens, and past and present secrets bring them closer to discovering just what lurks within the theatre, and who threatens from without. The only way to save themselves is to reveal their darkest shames—and use the Eros Element in a way that has already driven one man to the brink of madness.
Lord of the Sea Castle (Invader #2) by Ruadh Butler
It is 1170 – a tumultuous time for the people of Wales, England and Ireland. Raymond de Carew is in love, but the woman he desires is an earl’s daughter and so far above his station that he has no hope of ever winning her. However, Raymond’s lord has a mission for him: one that if it succeeds will put an Irish king back on his throne and prove Raymond worthy – for in Norman society, a man can rise as high as his skill with a sword can take him. With only a hundred men at his side, Raymond must cross the ocean to Ireland ahead of his mercenary lord’s invasion. There he will face the full might of the Viking city of Waterford… and either his deeds will become legend or he will be trampled into dust.
Neptune’s Key (Tattered Sails) by David Debord
An ancient map points the way to a lost treasure, and one man will stop at nothing to control it. Finn dreams of adventure on the high seas, but when a messenger appears in his sleepy fishing town with a secret message, he finds himself caught up in race to stop the deadliest pirate on the high seas from gaining a power thought to be a mere legend. Join Finn on a swashbuckling adventure as he sets off in search of Neptune’s Key!
Only the Dead Know Brooklyn by Chris Vola
Ryan Driggs has lived in Brooklyn for 128 years, 96 of them as one of the last members of a tribe of blood-eating immortals who have called the borough home since before colonial times. Besides the occasional hard-to-control thirst, his life in the twenty-first century is uneventful, until he meets Jennifer, a human from Manhattan with whom he falls in love….Unable to leave Brooklyn without reverting back to his original, cancer-stricken human state, Ryan knows he must tell Jennifer who and what he really is. But before he can find the words, she is kidnapped by a tribe of Manhattan vampires and Ryan discovers that, for a reason unknown to him, he is a target too. After contacting the oldest member of his tribe, a former slave named Frank Lafayette, and after an attempt on their lives that leaves two of Frank s employees dead, Ryan realizes he s been thrust into a world that is more dangerous than anything he’d imagined….As he travels to Manhattan to rescue Jennifer, forsaking his immortality, he gets caught up in a roller coaster of violence, lies, manipulation, and a power struggle that stretches back thousands of years. In a world where conspiracies are more than just theories and where he is the key to an ancient secret, Ryan must decide to fight or forsake both of the species he’s called his own.
Rising Depths (Vicious Depths #2) by Madeline Stanford
Alex Muir has been to hell and back – literally. The brutal Depths and the paradisiacal Azure are in utter chaos. Everyone is in danger now that Samuel, overlord of the Depths, has taken the Azure leader prisoner. His revenge plan is simple – to break down the gates of the Azure, and slaughter the residents inside. Alex is desperate to stop the bloodbath, but that means returning to the Depths to free her trapped friends. Even with a group of Azure rebels willing to fight alongside her, there’s no guarantee she’ll survive Samuel’s wrath. A massacre is looming, and Samuel is ready to reveal a shocking secret. As Alex struggles to fight back, she realizes that it’s all taking its toll on her fragile new relationship with Flynn, Samuel’s former right-hand man. Terror and betrayal are around every corner. Even in the Azure, Alex can’t trust anyone. How will she learn who her real friends are – and who’s keeping secrets that could destroy them all?
Shadow Found (Shadow Accords #6) by D.K. Holmberg
Carth has begun to develop her network, and offers her protection to the women of Asador, but not all are pleased with what she has done. When an assassin kills someone close to her, Carth leaves the city in pursuit. What she finds reveals that her plans have been inadequate, and the game she thought she had been playing might have been another entirely. If she doesn’t adapt, those she’s vowed to protect will be in danger, and a greater threat will be unleashed.
Shadow Reaper (Shadow #2) by Christine Feehan
Billionaire playboy Ricco Ferraro knows no other life. Being a shadow rider is in his blood – but so is a haunting desperation stemming from the secrets of his dark past. His recklessness puts not only his life at risk, but also the future of his entire family. To save them all, he must find a woman who can meet his every desire with a heat all her own…Just when Ricco has given up hope, he meets her – a mysterious woman whose shadow connects with his. She’s someone looking for a safe haven from the danger that has stalked her over the last several months. In Ricco’s embrace, she finds one. But the darkness in which they so often find sanctuary can also consume them…
Spectacle (Menagerie #2) by Rachel Vincent
When their coup of Metzger’s Menagerie is discovered, Delilah and her fellow cryptids find their newly won freedom brutally stripped away as they are sold into The Savage Spectacle, a private collection of “exotic wildlife.” Specializing in ruthless cryptid cage matches, safari-style creature hunts and living party favors, the Spectacle’s owner, Willem Vandekamp, caters to the forbidden fetishes of the wealthy and powerful. At the Spectacle, any wish can be granted—for the right price. …But Vandekamp’s closely guarded client list isn’t the only secret being kept at the Spectacle. Beneath the beauty and brutality of life in the collection lie much darker truths, and no one is more determined than Delilah to strip the masks from the human monsters and drag all dark things into the light.
Tarnished Legacy (Soul Dance #2) by Ann Gimpel
Tarnished Beginnings, the prequel for the Soul Dance series, is included in this paperback, so you’ll get two books for the price of one! Tarnished Beginnings: 1700s Egypt is a haven for magic-wielders of all kinds. Vampires hold court, staying one step ahead of the priests who want them dead. Gypsy caravans roam the Nile, plying their wares. Tairin Jabari was born in a caravan and has always believed she’s Romani. Why wouldn’t she? Her mother and father never suggested otherwise. The Rom have harsh rules. When Tairin’s first shift catches her unaware at thirteen, her father disappears, and the elders move with deadly speed to punish her mother for mating outside the blood. Hurt, lost, confused, and fearing for her own life, Tairin runs away, leaving her mother’s smoking funeral pyre behind. With her survival on the line every single day, she and her wolf have some hard choices to make. Tarnished Legacy: Half Romani, Tairin’s no stranger to hiding her mixed blood from gypsy caravans. What she can’t hide is her perpetual youth, courtesy of her shifter heritage. She’s overstayed her welcome where she is, but Germany is at war, and travel has become impossible for everyone targeted by the Reich. Elliott’s clairvoyance is strong. Seer for all the caravans in Germany, he catches Tairin eavesdropping outside their leader’s wagon. He should turn her in, but he can’t bring himself to do that. Instead, he interrogates her. Her magic is different, but he can’t figure out quite what she is. Any association between Romani and shifters is forbidden. Tairin should leave right now, tonight-before he discovers what she is and destroys her.
The Dragon’s Playlist by Laura Bickle
Di fled rural West Virginia to study music and pursue a bright future as a violinist. But when a mining accident nearly kills her father, she is summoned back home to support her family. Old ghosts and an old flame emerge from the past. When Di gets a job as a bookkeeper at the same mine where her father worked, she is drawn into a conflict pitting neighbor against neighbor as the mine plans an expansion to an untouched mountain….If the mining company’s operation goes forward, there will be more at stake than livelihoods or the pollution of the land: Di has discovered a dragon lives deep within Sawtooth Mountain, and he is not happy with this encroachment upon his lair. When catastrophe strikes, Di must choose between her family’s best interests and protecting the dragon – the last surviving bit of magic in Di’s shrinking world. In every fight, sides are chosen. And there can be no yearning for what has been left behind.
The Gatekeeper’s Key (Spellbound Consortium #2) by Vivienne Savage, A. Payne, N.D. Taylor
As a journalist with the gift of foresight, Krystine Iamides covers up magical crimes with fictional accounts. Though her psychic ability makes her the ideal Gatekeeper between the mundane and magical worlds, knowing the truth behind every scandal comes at a price—demons have marked her for extermination. …Once a human detective, Jean-Luc Chevalier is the only true immortal of the Guardian forces. His unusual abilities give him the distinct edge to fight necromancers, shades, and vampires, but they haven’t helped him win Krystine’s heart. When an attack lands her in his protective custody, he receives a final chance to win her back. …Forced to work together despite their rocky romantic history, Krys finds herself growing closer to Jean-Luc as the danger level rises. To protect the mortal realm from the darkness, they must battle their inner demons and unravel insidious plots. If they don’t, the forces of Hell will overrun the world, and there won’t be a future for anyone.
The Hundredth Queen (Hundredth Queen #1) by Emily R. King
As an orphan ward of the Sisterhood, eighteen-year-old Kalinda is destined for nothing more than a life of seclusion and prayer. Plagued by fevers, she’s an unlikely candidate for even a servant’s position, let alone a courtesan or wife. Her sole dream is to continue living in peace in the Sisterhood’s mountain temple….But a visit from the tyrant Rajah Tarek disrupts Kalinda’s life. Within hours, she is ripped from the comfort of her home, set on a desert trek, and ordered to fight for her place among the rajah’s ninety-nine wives and numerous courtesans. Her only solace comes in the company of her guard, the stoic but kind Captain Deven Naik….Faced with the danger of a tournament to the death—and her growing affection for Deven—Kalinda has only one hope for escape, and it lies in an arcane, forbidden power buried within her….In Emily R. King’s fantasy debut, an orphan girl blossoms into a warrior, summoning courage and confidence in her fearless quest to upend tradition, overthrow an empire, and reclaim her life as her own.
The War King (The One King #1) by Daniel Mulholland
A land of peace is about to be torn by war. In the east a mad king rises, paranoia and a lifetime of war driving him to the brink. To the south, a terrible tragedy leaves a royal family in tatters and a young princess lost out in the wilderness with a legendary company of mercenaries. In the West, a young man destined to be king is rising, but before long he’s stuck in a deadly battle and his people are losing. Time is running out and the city is about to fall to a horde of twisted and horrible creatures. By his side stands his fated champion, a man born of the Kunhe, an elite warrior race that are trained from birth to fight and kill. In the monstrous mountain range to the north, a darkness ascends. An evil that has been trapped for a thousand years can finally sense its freedom and without the three kingdoms united under The One King, humanity will surely fall. The One King will rise. The mad king will fall. And humanity stands on the brink of destruction as the horrors of the North swarm the Three Kingdoms one last time.
White Hot (Hidden Legacy #2) by Ilona Andrews
Nevada Baylor has a unique and secret skill—she knows when people are lying—and she’s used that magic (along with plain, hard work) to keep her colorful and close-knit family’s detective agency afloat. But her new case pits her against the shadowy forces that almost destroyed the city of Houston once before, bringing Nevada back into contact with Connor “Mad” Rogan….Rogan is a billionaire Prime—the highest rank of magic user—and as unreadable as ever, despite Nevada’s “talent.” But there’s no hiding the sparks between them. Now that the stakes are even higher, both professionally and personally, and their foes are unimaginably powerful, Rogan and Nevada will find that nothing burns like ice …
Wolf Case (Shifters at Law #1) by Sophie Stern
When Lara’s neighbor decides to sue her for damaging his lawn, she doesn’t know what to do. She’s sure she’s not at fault, but the thought of paying for an attorney freaks her out. When she realizes she doesn’t have a choice, she heads to the offices of Casa, Fee, and Lyon for help. …Ronan Casa has never had a client look quite as delicious or quite as sweet as Lara Berkshire. The wolf-shifter is the most beautiful and interesting creature he’s ever laid eyes on, and Ronan’s inner-wolf screams that Lara is his mate. …When Lara’s issues with her neighbor begin to escalate before her court date, Ronan realizes he’s going to have to take matters into his own hands if he wants to keep his beloved safe – and if he wants to win her heart.
Now, what do you want to win this week? Leave a comment, and I’ll announce the winner on Sunday.