Every once in a while I unintentionally choose two novellas to read, back to back. In those cases, rather than post 1 review at a time, I'll just condense two posts into one. So here we go...
by Renee George
The Blurb: If your magic is as tragic as your love life, it's time to practice safe hex.
Brita Davis, a witch with a talent for hexes, has had it up to her frizzy hair with her mom trying to set her up with every Tom, Dick, and Warlock. And the Cauldron Festival celebration has ignited her mother's passion once again for matchmaking. And when the warlock she's supposed to hook up with brings an entourage of Shifters as security with him, Brita is certain she wants nothing to do with the self-important jerk.
However, she can't seem to get one of the Shifters off her mind.
Cas, a werewolf on an assignment from the Council, can't let something like lust, love, and the mating scent get in the way of his job, but Brita makes it hard for him to do the task he was hired for—very, very hard—by her mere presence. Besides, she's bossy, sometimes she's a little mean, and her magic has attracted the attention of some very dangerous people.
Still, protecting Brita is turning out the be the only job he really wants.
After reading a few deep and serious romances, I was in the mood for something a little lighter and this was a perfect choice.
This story takes place in the colorful and crazy Magic and Mayhem Universe where witches and shifters are the norm. There are several other books in this series and in this "world" but you can certainly read them all as a standalone.
Brita is a witch who has an unusual and sometimes dangerous talent for hexes. Cas is a wolf shifter who strolls into Brita's world and knocks it off it's axis.
The story starts as Brita's mother is annoyingly forcing Brita into another matchmaking scheme while preparing for the annual fall festival honoring the goddess Cerridwen. Her suitor is also a witch and has a group of bodyguards with him, Cas being one of them. Neither are prepared for the instant attraction and the timing couldn't be worse.
Things immediately start to go pear-shaped and Brita and Cas are thrown together as a mystery needs to be solved. This story is fast-paced and full of humor and surprises. The characters are engaging, the twists are intriguing and the romance is satisfying.
If you're looking for a quick well-written story with a tons of fun and mischief, this one is definitely a winner.
by Scarlett Vora
The Blurb: Silas has been at war for most of his life. First as a soldier, later as the commander of a small rebel army, aiming to overthrow a great empire.
Now the war is won and Silas has been made a duke for his part in it. But what's a cynical, battle-hardened general supposed to do in peacetime? He has no idea.
And then his friend and comrade, King Leopold, sends him a gift. A woman. Clio is a mage and a healer, and Silas ought to welcome her into his household... but she's young and pretty and far too cheerful for a woman who's lived most of her life in an isolated prison.
And he likes her. Far too much. Not because he believes the sweet mask she wears, but because he can see through it. Somewhere, deep inside, she's like him.
This story was very different than the first listed above. Our story is set in a fictional medieval type world filled with kingdoms, knights, rebellions, and magic.
Our main character Silas is an alpha to the core. His mantra is discipline, alertness, preparedness, and skill. After years of fighting at the right hand of the current king, he has taken the roll as Duke of Penmarch. But even in this time of peace and comfort, he still feels the need to stay vigilant in training his men and has no time for fun, happiness, or love.
Too bad fate has other plans. As part of a condition to help his cause in the war, Arrasi mages were promised freedom. These mages have long been thought of as dangerous and had been segregated from the rest of the world. With their promise fulfilled, Silas has been sent a mage to begin their introduction into the general population. Silas is not prepared for such an intriguing and beautiful woman, Clio, to be his new healer. She stirs feelings in him that are, at first, unwelcome and alarming.
The writing style and imagery are exactly what you would imagine when thrust into an antiquated and gothic world. The story is told from Sila's point-of-view and it is nicely done to gauge all aspects of the growing and frustrating relationship between the two main characters.
This is not a warm and fuzzy romance. It is dark, gritty, and at times uncomfortable. Just like the world it lives in. But there is a heart and soul to this story and the characters are easy to care about.
For such a short tale, the characters are well-developed and the romance is sultry and combustive. There were a few typos here and there, but it was worth the read and I would happily recommend it.
Have you read either of these books? What did you think?