Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Review - Passion Unleashed by Larissa Ione

A new review has been posted for Passion Unleashed by Larissa Ione. This is the third novel in the Demonica series.

The review can be viewed: HERE

Feel free to leave comments here on the blog post, or you can comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Review - Fragile Eternity by Melissa Marr

A new review has been posted for Fragile Eternity by Melissa Marr. This is the third book in the Wicked Lovely series.

The complete review can be viewed: HERE

Feel free to leave comments here on the blog post, or you can comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Review - Blue Diablo by Ann Aguirre

New Review posted for Blue Diablo by Ann Aguirre. This is the first novel in the Corine Solomon series.

You can read the full review: HERE

Feel free to leave comments here on the blog post, or you can comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Thanks for stopping by. :)
Happy Reading!

Zombie Chickens Blog Award...

My lovely blogging friend Mishel, from Mis{h}takes, honored me with the following blog award:

The blogger who receives this award believes in the Tao of the zombie chicken - excellence, grace and persistence in all situations, even in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. These amazing bloggers regularly produce content so remarkable that their readers would brave a raving pack of zombie chickens just to be able to read their inspiring words. As a recipient of this world-renowned award, you now have the task of passing it on to at least 5 other worthy bloggers. Do not risk the wrath of the zombie chickens by choosing unwisely or not choosing at all...

I wouldn’t want to risk the wrath of the zombie chickens, so I’ll be passing this fine award on to:

Literary Escapism
Fantasy Dreamer’s Ramblings
Sam’s Book Blog
The Romantic Life

Thank you Mishel! *grin*

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Promo - Private Midnight by Kris Saknussemm

By the author of Zanesville, a seductive story of grit, gunplay, vampirism, and a bit of bondage.

Detective Birch Ritter is a man on the edge-of himself. His past is filled with secrets, shadows, guilt, and ghosts. Then a dubious police buddy he hasn't seen in a year introduces him to a mysterious woman who says her business is shadows. What she knows about what lies between the darkness and the light inside men is more than Ritter may want to find out, and much more than he can resist learning. It's said that to try to forget is to try to conceal, and concealing evidence is a crime. But maybe revelation is another kind of crime-against nature.

Kris Saknussemm, the widely acclaimed author of the sci-fi smash Zanesville, now delves into another genre, and another world-a world where even the sunlight is shadowy and where deviancy is the norm. Private Midnight is a journey into the seedy, sexy, underbelly of life-crime noir for a new generation.

To learn more about Private Midnight, please visit the the website of Kris Saknussemm: HERE

Book and purchasing information can also be found at Overlook Press: HERE

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

New Review - Some Girls Bite by Chloe Neill

New Review posted for Some Girls Bite by Chloe Neill. This is the first release in the Chicagoland Vampires series.

The full review can be viewed: HERE

Feel free to leave comments here on the blog post, or you can comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!

Review - Godmother by Carolyn Turgeon

New Review posted for Godmother by Carolyn Turgeon.

The full review can be viewed: HERE

Feel free to leave comments here on the blog post, or you can comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!

Review - Curse the Dawn by Karen Chance

New Review posted for Curse the Dawn by Karen Chance. This is the fourth book in the Cassandra Palmer series.

The full review can be viewed: HERE

Feel free to leave comments here on the blog post, or you can comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Review - Deadly Desire by Keri Arthur

New Review posted for Deadly Desire by Keri Arthur. This is the seventh book in the Riley Jenson, Guardian, series.

You can read the full review on the website: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!


Sunday, March 22, 2009

Review - Ghostland by Jory Strong

New Review posted for Ghostland by Jory Strong. This is the first book in the Ghostland series and features Aisling McConaughey, a shamaness.

You can read the full review on the website: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!


Saturday, March 21, 2009

Review - Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews

A new review has been posted for Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews. This is the third novel in the Kate Daniels series.

The full review can be viewed: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!

Winner - Happy Hour at Casa Dracula

Good morning Bloggers!

The winner for a copy of Happy Hour at Casa Dracula is.....


Thank you to everyone who stopped by to read Marta's guest blog and to participate in the book giveaway!

Congratulations Chris, please use the email address in my profile to contact me with your mailing name and address.

Happy Reading!


Friday, March 20, 2009

Giveaway Reminder - Happy Hour at Casa Dracula by Marta Acosta

Don't forget...today is the last day to comment for the giveaway of Happy Hour at Casa Dracula by Marta Costa on her guest blog! Please visit the post to enter: HERE

Happy Reading!


Thursday, March 19, 2009

Review - Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh

New Review has been posted for Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh. This is the first novel in the Guild Hunter series. :)

You can read the full review: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!


Review - Barbie & the Beast by Linda Thomas-Lundstrom

New Review posted for Barbie & the Beast.

You can read the full review: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Review - Secret Life of a Vampire by Kerrelyn Sparks

New Review posted for Secret Life of a Vampire by Kerrelyn Sparks. This is Book 6 in the Love at Stake series. :)

You can read the full review: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!


Review - Animal Attraction by Charlene Teglia

New review posted on the website for Animal Attraction by Charlene Teglia!

You can find view the full review: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!


Guest Blog and Giveaway with Marta Acosta

Marta Acosta is with us today with a guest blog, and to give away one copy of Happy Hour at Casa Dracula. I had asked Marta how it is that she wrote a comedy and ended up with all of us Urban Fantasy fans following her. Don’t forget to comment for a chance to win!

Here’s what Marta had to say:

Okay, so there’s a woman in a posh bar and a handsome man approaches her. After a pleasant talk, he says, “Will you sleep with me for a million dollars?” She blushes and says yes. Then he says, “How about twenty bucks?”

“What kind of girl do you think I am?” she asks angrily.

“We’ve already established that,” he says. “Now we’re just negotiating a price.”

Sometimes I think of that joke when I’m telling people that I’m not a vampire writer. Sure, I’ve got a four-book deal for a series featuring vampires, and, yes, I’ve got a blog that’s called Vampire Wire, and it’s true that my book covers have characters of the fangy variety.

So why the denial?

When I wrote Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, I wrote it as a comedy and incorporated a vampire theme to spoof the conventions. I wanted a funny hip cover and a different title that would signal to readers that my book was primarily humorous. So I lost that battle, and then I found that I was being categorized in unexpected ways. I was suddenly a writer of “women’s fiction,” even though I’d always had lots of male readers. People were introducing me as a “vampire writer” and asking if I’d always been obsessed by vampires and if I wore a cape.

Man, I totally should have ridden that wave, but I’m the sort of person who will cut off my nose to spite my face; and I’ve never crossed a bridge without asking someone for a pack of matches and a bottle of gasoline. I resented being labeled, even thought the labels were perfectly lovely. I should have had “Vampire Writer” and “I Heart Dracula” tattooed on my forehead and embroidered on the back of a black satin cape that I could wear to the grocery store and book events.

Since the publication of my first novel, Simon & Schuster/Pocket has released Midnight Brunch and The Bride of Casa Dracula. Readers and even bookstore staff have no idea where to find my books. (They’re in the general fiction section of the bookstore, under Acosta and conveniently close to the anthologies of erotic short stories.) I accept some responsibility in the confusion since I kept insisting that I wasn’t a paranormal/fantasy writer, or a romance writer.

The other night, I pulled a can out of the cupboard in the dark and took a sip. I thought it was a soda, but it was beer and I practically spit it out. It wasn’t that the beer was bad; it just wasn’t what I expected. Those expecting genre conventions in my books sometimes have that reaction because they just see my books as Not Soda, instead of yum Delicious Beer!

During the last few years, I’ve encountered many wonderful paranormal romance and urban fantasy readers, writers, and bloggers. I have more fun on my Vampire Wire blog than I should for someone who’s supposed to be focusing on her fiction. I really wish I was someone obsessed by the paranormal so I could really fit into the group.

Kimberly tells me that I should be promoting my own books more, so here it is: my books are the hilarious, well crafted, smart, and exciting adventures of a bright, impetuous, sexy heroine and a pack of snobby vampires. Milagro has a weakness for fabulous men, parties, lunatics, con artists and tacky clothes. If you like flawed and sometimes clueless characters like Bridget Jones, you’ll like my books.

My next novel is a romantic comedy without vampires (I’m calling it Nancy’s Theory of Style, but the title isn’t confirmed) and then the fourth book in my Casa Dracula series will be released. I hope that people will buy my books so I won’t have to get a real job.

Thanks, Kimberly, for letting my ramble. One of the best things about being a sort of vampire writer is meeting all the wonderful reviewers like you!

Thank you Marta, and thanks so much for agreeing to share your thoughts with us. It’s always a pleasure. :)

To learn more about Marta Acosta and her books, please visit her: HERE

You can also read my reviews of her books: Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, Midnight Brunch, and The Bride of Casa Dracula.

For the chance to win a copy of Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, please share with us the supernatural being you’d like to see more of in books. (vampires, faeries, ghosts, werewolves, dragons, etc) Don’t forget to share a name if you’re leaving an anonymous post. Deadline is midnight Friday March 20th, 2009, and the winner will be announced Saturday the 21st. Good luck and happy reading!

Kimberly Swan, Darque Reviews

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Review - Eve of Darkness by S. J. Day

A new review for Eve of Darkness by S. J. Day has been posted to the website. This is the first release in the Marked series. :)

You can find the full review: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!


Review - Undead on Arrival by L. A. Banks

A new review has been posted on the website for Undead on Arrival by L. A. Banks! This is Book 3 in the Crimson Moon series. :)

The review can be found: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or comment directly to my mailbox through the contact page on the website.

Happy Reading!


Review - The Immortal Hunter by Lynsay Sands

New review posted for The Immortal Hunter by Lynsay Sands, along with a link to read the first few chapters!

You can find the full review: HERE

Feel free to stop back and leave comments here on the blog, or use the comment page on the website to send comments directly to my mailbox. :)

Happy Reading!


Thursday, March 12, 2009

Promo - B & N BookClub, Blade: The Series and Monster Blood Cult

Barnes & Noble News:
Did you know that Barnes & Noble has a Book Club message board just for Paranormal and Fantasy?
The current featured titles are:
Blood Blade by Marcus Pelegrimas
White Witch, Black Curse by Kim Harrison

You can join in on the discusions: HERE

Blade: The Series
If you missed the series when it premiered on Spike TV, or if you'd just love to see the action once again, Joost has just added the full season.

You can view it: HERE

Monster Blood Cult
If you're a fan of Monster Blood Tattoo and Lamplighter by D. M. Cornish, then you'll want to click on over and check out the Monster Blood Cult fan site on Facebook. You can join in: HERE
If you haven't yet seen it, here's the book trailer:



Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Review - Death's Daughter by Amber Benson

New review posted to the website for Death's Daughter by Amber Benson. You can read the full review here:


You're welcome to post any comments or questions here on the blog or do it through the contact page on the website which will come to me via email. :)

Happy Reading!


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Review - Hunted by P. C. Cast & Kristin Cast

A new review has been posted for Hunted by P. C. Cast & Kristin Cast! Please stop by and view it here:

Feel free to leave any comments you might have here on this post. No spoilers please! :)

Monday, March 9, 2009

New Reviews Posted...

My latest reviews have been posted to their pages on the website! If you'd like to comment on any of them, please feel free to do so here on the blog. :)

Happy reading and thanks for stopping by!

Destiny of the Wolf by Terry Spear can be found here:

Drood by Dan Simmons can be found here:

Ghouls Just Haunt to Have Fun by Victoria Laurie can be found here:

Immortals: The Reckoning by Joy Nash, Jennifer Ashley, Robin T. Popp can be found here:


Stakes & Stilettos by Michelle Rowen can be found here:


Wicked by Any Other Name by Linda Wisdom can be found here:

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Website Announcement and Drood by Dan Simmons

I just wanted to let you all know that after resolving some computer issues in February I got busy on building a website. So I'm a bit behind and working hard to catch up.

Uploading the previous reviews will take a few weeks, but I hope to have them up there soon. I'll continue posting announcements, promo, etc. on the blog and you'll see that there is a direct link in the navigation bar from the website. :) The biggest change will be the reviews/interviews being posted on the website, but the links will be shared here for easy access.

I've just uploaded the review for Drood by Dan Simmons, and you can find that here:

Happy Reading!


Friday, March 6, 2009

Interview - Victoria Laurie

Today Darque Reviews welcomes Victoria Laurie. She has graciously agreed to share a bit about herself and the books she writes.

KS: Hi Victoria, thanks so much for sharing your time with Darque Reviews! We’re looking forward to getting to know you and your work better.

VL: Thank you so much, Kimberly! It’s a pleasure to be asked to participate!

KS: Can you tell us how long you’ve been writing, and what influenced you to write professionally?

VL: Honestly I haven’t been writing that long. I started my first book, Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye, in February of 2003, and it was published in December of ’04 – so it was a ridiculously quick process for me. And at the time of its publication, I didn’t expect to write more than three books. I thought I’d write a trilogy and be done with it, so it’s rather hysterical that I should be in the process of writing my fourteenth book right now with five more under contract. We plan and the Big Guy Upstairs laughs, right? :)

I will also say that what motivated me to begin writing in the first place was reading the first few books in the fantabulous Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich. I think I had just started in on her third book when I had that “Eureka!” moment and I thought, “I could TOTALLY write something like this!” I then promptly called my sister and told her that I was going to write an amateur sleuth novel. Her response was, “Okay, Victoria….good luck with that!” She thought it was just another one of my crazy ideas. Ha! I guess I showed her, huh? :)

KS: For those readers who haven’t experienced the Ghost Hunter Mysteries series, can you tell them a little about M.J. Holliday and her friends?

VL: Well, M.J. is a character that was first introduced in the Psychic Eye Series in the book A Vision of Murder. Ms. Holliday is a psychic medium and ghost hunter. Her sidekick is her best friend, the extra light-in-his loafers Gilley Gillespie. Together, M.J. and Gilley help de-spook haunted locations, while assisting the dead in crossing over and in the process, they also solve a mystery or two. M.J. is a bit more mature than Abby, with an extra dose of guts – not much scares her – so she’s a blast to write – and I will admit that I also enjoy trying to scare you a teensy bit in the process! :)

KS: With your March 2009 release approaching, the third in the Ghost Hunters Mysteries series, can you give fans an idea of what to expect from Ghouls Just Haunt to Have Fun?

VL: Certainly! Haunt is set in one of San Francisco’s most haunted hotels. M.J. gets roped into doing a television show called, Haunted Possessions, which is set around the premise that certain items can be possessed by evil spirits. M.J. starts out thinking that the show’s premise is a lot of baloney until she participates in the production and she and a fellow medium encounter an evil spirit inhabiting an antique knife.

All sorts of chaos follows, so I would say that Haunt is a cross between Agatha Christie’s, And Then There Were None and the movie, The House on Haunted Hill. It’s a bit spookier than previous M.J.’s, but I think that there’s enough levity there to help temper it.

KS: The series that first got me hooked on your writing is the Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye Mysteries. Can you tell readers a little about Abby and her friends?

VL: Absotutely! Abby Cooper is a professional psychic, but she doesn’t go for the bangles, headscarves and crystal balls. She’s a very non-traditional intuitive; incredibly down to earth, very girl-next-door – and if you called her a witch she would be highly offended!

So, in the first book, the Abster meets her main squeeze, a police detective named Dutch Rivers, who doesn’t think much of her sixth sense, until she uses it to help solve two local murders. From there on out Abby is sort of constantly getting involved in solving crimes, much to her own chagrin. Although, after six books, I believe she might finally be getting used to it. :)

KS: When can fans expect to see a new Psychic Eye Mysteries release?

VL: You know, I kept wondering why so many people were asking me this until I noticed that my own website is woefully absent of any future launch info on the Abster….my bad! :) So, for the foreseeable future, (at least the next 3 years) the official schedule of release dates for each series are:

Each March a new Ghost Hunter Mystery (M.J.)
Each May a new Oracles of Delphi Keep adventure
Each September a new Psychic Eye Mystery (Abby)

KS: You have an all new series coming up, and the first release will be Oracles of Delphi Keep. What can you tell us about it, and who is the series geared toward?

VL: Ah…thank you for mentioning Oracles! This series is my lovechild. I adore it and I’m beyond excited about it – it’s official release date is May 26th, 2009 by the by.

While most of my adult novels take a month or two to craft – this book took EIGHT months to write! Sooooo much love, research, and attention to detail went into it, and like any proud parent I’m so excited to send it out into the world and watch what happens!

So, the premise of the series is this: Three thousand years ago a great Oracle of Delphi named Laodamia foretold of a time in human history when the world would be brought to its knees, and a dark and terrible force would inspire such a battle between good and evil that the fate of all mankind would hang in the balance. Laodamia also foretold that the only way for good to conquer evil lay in the gathering of six oracles – all orphaned children –each bearing a unique intuitive gift that would be needed at the time of the final encounter between these dark forces and our orphans.

Fast-forward to the story’s main setting, Dover, England, August 1938; Ian Wigby is living with his sister Theo in an old fortress turned orphanage called Delphi Keep. One day while exploring an underground cavern along the White Cliffs of Dover, he stumbles upon an ancient silver box which contains a prophecy written by the Phoenician Oracle Laodamia, and within the prophecy, the Oracle names both Ian and his sister directly and sets them on a rather epic adventure to gather the other oracles from around the world while dodging sorcerers, evil beasts and a particularly nasty underworld god. Oh, yeah, and also while trying not to become a casualty of World War II!

The overall story arc is rather humongous….I seriously bit off a tad more than I can chew here – but I have another five books to try and tell the giant tale, with plenty of adventure, mystery and yes, even laughter in between. The series is specifically targeted for the Children’s Middle Grade age group of 10 and up, but, really, as we learned with Harry Potter – it could very well appeal to adults too.

KS: What are you working on now? What will readers see in the upcoming year?

VL: Well, I’m just wrapping up the second book in the Oracles series….which is proving to be every bit as challenging as the first. Then I’m off to pen another M.J. mystery, (for release in March of 2010) and of course immediately following that I’ll have to dive right into another Abby Cooper, (for release in September 2010)

This March, however, readers can follow M.J. to San Francisco where she’ll fight a force of evil greater than any she’s ever encountered as she rids a haunted hotel of its spectral tenants in Ghouls Just Haunt to Have Fun.

This May they’ll get their first glimpse of Ian Wigby in The Oracles Of Delphi Keep, (see above for a description.)

Then, in September 2009, they can follow Abby Cooper to Washington D.C. as she officially goes to work for the FBI on a missing persons case that has her embroiled in politics and danger in the release of Doom With A View.

KS: With several great series going, do you work on more than one project at a time?

VL: Ha! Always!!! :)

Yes, it’s impossible not to because every book gets revised or edited at least twice, then of course there are the page proofs to review etc., etc. I remember a few months ago I sat down for a phone conference with my agent as we went over the various deadlines coming up in 2009, and about ten minutes into it he actually asked me how the heck I juggled it all. I truthfully told him, “I have no idea!”

And yet, somehow the work always gets done, and I truly believe that it does so because I have such an amazing support team of editors, copyeditors, and my wonderful agent. They keep me on track, upbeat and focused; otherwise I’d be bald (from pulling my hair out) and sniffling noisily into my Cocoa Puffs about now…

KS: You have an amazing ‘day job’, can you tell us about it, and what made you decide to share your talent in a professional capacity?

VL: You know that phrase, “Write what you know?” Yeah…that is really true for me. Like Abby and M.J., I’m also a psychic medium.

I was always an intuitive kid – I just knew when things were going to happen, and the fact that they weren’t usually “big” things is what kept me skeptical about my own abilities for so long. Also – a lot of the hype you see around some of these famous “psychics” just turned me off. In my opinion, a lot of them thought they were “special” and “gifted” and the way they sort of lorded themselves above other people really soured their appeal. I wanted nothing to do with the profession – I mean, those people were strange!

Anyway, I didn’t feel very “gifted” when I would play around with friends and predict their futures, but enough of what I predicted came true and enough of them finally convinced me to start charging for what I could offer on an intuitive level that I finally – and quite grudgingly - took their advice and hung out my shingle. One friend told another, who told another, who told another and soon I had a small following that turned larger year by year.

I’ve remained pretty practical about the whole thing since then. I still don’t believe I’m “gifted.” It’s really not a gift in my opinion, and no, it’s not a curse either. :)

Being a professional psychic or medium takes skill, and like any skill, the more you practice it the better you get at it. So, I try always to remember that I can be wrong – ‘cause I can – and that people who sign up for a reading with me have waited patiently for at least two or three months, and that they are spending their hard earned cash for my intuitive input – that’s a really special trust when you think about it, which is why I try so friggin’ hard to get it right and to “see” as much detail for them as possible in each and every reading. I truly give it my all.

Pretty much, my readings are very much like the ones Abby gives to her clients; down to earth, practical and with real information – not some hippie-yippee-airy-fairy-fluff that you can’t quantify. I hate that stuff, so I don’t incorporate any of it into my readings. My sessions are about who from the Other Side wants to stop in and say hello, and then I do a future forecast of the next 12 months and what my clients can expect to come down the pike. I cover stuff like career, relationships, family, finances, travel, etc., etc., etc. I want you to be able to take the information I give you, and not only know what kind of a year to expect, but use that information to your advantage to make good choices and dodge the occasional bullet if need be.

KS: Is there anything else you’d like to share with readers, or do you have any advice for the aspiring writers out there?

VL: Wow, okay, so the number one thing I’d like to say is THANK YOU, Kimberly for this fantabulous opportunity to stop by and say hello to your readers, (waving!) and also, thank you to each and every person out there who has supported me over the years. It means more than you can know.

As for advice to aspiring writers…hmmmm. Well, I would say that I think the best advice I can offer you is to write every day, even if it’s just a paragraph. You should learn to get into writing as a habit. If you do, and are ever lucky to land a book contract, then it won’t feel so much like work. By that time it’ll just be second nature.

KS: Thanks so much for sharing your time with us Victoria, it’s been a pleasure!

VL: Huge hugs and a bajillion thank you’s, Kimberly, it’s been a blast!

To learn more about Victoria Laurie, her writing and her work, please visit her website: HERE
To learn about the upcoming Oracles of Delphi Keep series, please visit the website: HERE

Kimberly Swan, Darque Reviews

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Review - Red-Headed Stepchild by Jaye Wells

Red-Headed Stepchild
Sabina Kane, Book 1
Jaye Wells
March 31, 2009
ISBN# 978-0-316-03776-1

Book Blurb:
In a world where being of mixed-blood is a major liability, Sabina Kane has the only profession fit for an outcast: assassin. But, her latest mission threatens the fragile peace between the vampire and mage races and Sabina must scramble to figure out which side she's on. She's never brought her work home with her---until now.

This time, it's personal.

My thoughts:
Sabina Kane was born the mixed-blood daughter of a vampire and a mage. It was a forbidden pairing, and one that Sabina has paid for since the day she was born.

Raised by her vampire grandmother, the alpha of the Dominae, and forced to suppress any mage power she might possess, Sabina has been delegated to the position of assassin. The night she carries out the order to kill her longtime friend David, her life begins to change.

Clovis Trakiya, born a mix of vampire and demon, has gathered followers whose intention is on bringing the supernatural world together. At the top of their list are the mages and the vampires. Sent to infiltrate the group, Sabina is about to have an eye-opening experience that will have her questioning further the way that she was raised. Life as she knew it can never be the same.

This is the first book in the Sabina Kane trilogy. Ms. Wells takes readers on a young woman’s journey with deceit, betrayal and obstacles to overcome at every turn. Well-written with easy to visualize detail, Read-Headed Stepchild is a fantastic opening to this trilogy and should be at the top of every urban fantasy reader’s wish list.

To learn more about Red-Headed Stepchild, please visit Ms. Wells’ website: HERE

Kimberly Swan, Darque Reviews

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Review - Made to be Broken by Kelley Armstrong

Made to be Broken
Nadia Stafford, Book 2
Kelley Armstrong
Bantam Books
February 24, 2009
ISBN# 978-0-553-58838-5

Book blurb:
The author of the acclaimed Women of the Otherworld series returns with her latest novel featuring an exciting heroine with a lethal hidden talent. This time she’s hot on the trail of a young woman no one else cares about—and a killer who’s bound to strike again.

Nadia Stafford isn’t your typical nature lodge owner. An ex-cop with a legal code all her own, she’s known only as “Dee” to her current employer: a New York crime family that pays her handsomely to bump off traitors. But when Nadia discovers that a troubled teenage employee and her baby have vanished in the Canadian woods, the memory of a past loss comes back with a vengeance and her old instincts go into overdrive.

With her enigmatic mentor, Jack, covering her back, Nadia unearths sinister clues that point to an increasingly darker and deadlier mystery. Now, with her obsession over the case deepening, the only way Nadia can right the wrongs of the present is to face her own painful ghosts—and either bury them for good, or die trying. Because in her book everyone deserves a chance. And everyone deserves justice.

My thoughts:
When a young woman she employs at her lodge disappears with her baby, Nadia Stafford suspects foul play. Her past and her work as an assassin are about to play a heavy role in tracking down the girl.

With Jack recovering from an injury, he’s available to keep an eye on her and help in the search. Nadia also has Quinn, a fellow assassin and more, helping by gaining information with his government ties. What they find at the end of the trail may lead to much more than one girl’s disappearance, but it’s the fate of one girl who threatens to tear Nadia apart.

This is the second book in the Nadia Stafford series. Ms. Armstrong shares a suspense filled adventure and shows a deeper look into her heroine. It was July 2007 when we first met the characters in this series, and I was amazed to realize how vividly they’ve remained in my memory. Made to be Broken is well-detailed, packed with danger, and offers up romantic possibilities. Can’t wait for more!

To learn more about Made to be Broken, please visit Ms. Armstrong’s website: HERE

Kimberly Swan, Darque Reviews

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Promo - Hunted by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast

Hunted will be released on March 10, 2009 and I know The House of Night has a huge following! So to tease you with a little taste of what's to come, here is an exclusive Hunted trailer:

Just in case that wasn't enough to tide you over......you can read Chapter 1 of Hunted:

...and listen to Chapter 2 of Hunted:

Enjoy! :)

Kimberly Swan, Darque Reviews

Interview - Terry Spear

Today Darque Reviews welcomes Terry Spear. She’s agreed to share a bit about herself and her writing.

Hi Terry, thanks so much for joining us!

TS: Thanks so much for having me, Kimberly!

KS: Can you tell us how long you’ve been writing, and what influenced you to write professionally?

TS: Forever! Really, since I was a child I loved to read and make up my own stories, create my own worlds to live in. When my children were young, I bought tons of books for them, read to them, encouraged them to read, and wanted so badly to create my own stories. So I did. One even made it to a senior editor! But then I switched gears and began writing a historical romance. My dad, my greatest advocate, who loved the story, was diagnosed with a fast-acting cancer and was dying. When he died, I couldn’t write. I was devastated. But then in tears, I began to pen his story, The Thirteenth Mission, about his last mission over Germany when he was shot down, which was published in Ex-POW Magazine. Fan mail from that free publication spurred me forth, from the Belgian who thanked me for sharing my father’s story and my father for helping to free his people, to the Ex-POW who sent me his book of consolidated ex-prisoner of war stories from his local chapter. Their own stories touched me so much, I’ve been writing both for nonfiction and fiction magazines, and novels and short stories ever since. J And Destiny of the Wolf was dedicated to my dad and all those who serve in the Armed Forces.

KS: You have an upcoming SourceBooks release, Destiny of the Wolf. Can you tell us about it?

TS: All my wolf titles are stand alone books, and I want them to really showcase something different about the wolf world in each so it doesn’t seem like the same old story told over and over again. In Destiny of the Wolf, the gray lupus garous actually run the town in Colorado from its inception as a silver mining town, whereas in most werewolf societies in my world, the werewolves live amongst the humans, keeping a low profile. So it was fun showing them in charge. :) And now, others want to model their own towns after Darien Silver’s. But his isn’t perfect, not when Lelandi Wildhaven shows up and turns his world upside down.

KS: Will we be seeing more of your wolves in the future?

TS: Absolutely! In Temptation of the Wolf, due out in the fall, we have the same world, only different location, and totally different pack dynamics. His people have abandoned him. His sister has run off with a pack of betas, and …well, he runs into the heroine when he’s not in his best form and things go downhill from there. :) Allure of the Wolf, title to change, is about an Arctic werewolf pack, set in the Canadian Arctic, which may come out in the fall also.

KS: What are you working on now?

TS: Plight of the Wolf and Night of the Wolf, Huntress for Hire.

KS: Which came first for you, Scottish Medieval Romance or Urban Fantasy?

TS: I first started writing a western romance when my dad became so ill. I did finish it, but then set it aside. I went from there to a ghost western, still working on it, set near where I live in an old stagecoach stop town. Then I switched gears and began writing Scottish Medieval Romance, partly because of my Scottish background and all the research I was doing into my roots. At that time, the heroine has second sight, so it was the first work I’d written that delved into the light paranormal. Soft core. :) Realistic enough to fit into the real world in Medieval times. Then I began writing hardcore paranormal—vampires, and from there, werewolves. But with my werewolf world, I wanted the world to feel real, and so I keep my werewolves and their actions as close to what real wolves mixed with a human half might be like.

KS: Which part of the writing process do you enjoy most? Which you part do you enjoy the least?
TS: I love coming up with the first meeting between the hero and heroine, and the first kiss. :) In each of the stories, I wanted the kiss to come unexpectedly. So I hope I was able to do that. :) The least? Saying goodbye to the characters. So in each one of them, you’ll get a glimpse of a character from a previous book. The mystery wolf in Heart of the Wolf makes his appearance in the next three books. Darien Silver from Heart of the Wolf makes a cameo appearance in Temptation of the Wolf also. :)

KS: What do you do when you manage a little free time?

TS: Garden, though I should say relandscaping. Major work, but I love to see the transformation. And reading. Whether I have free time or not. :)

KS: Do you enjoy reading the same genres that you write? Who are some of your favorite authors?

TS: I do. I love Leslie Lafoy’s historical works, Karen Moning’s Immortals, and Joy Nash’s as well and tons more.

KS: If you could have any supernatural trait, what would it be? Why?

TS: Vanish and reappear somewhere else. And time travel. With the ability to vanish and reappear anywhere else if I ended up somewhere that I really didn’t want to be. :)

KS: Is there anything else you’d like to share with readers, or do you have any advice for the aspiring writers out there?

TS: For readers, I love to hear from you! I’m on Myspace, Facebook and Twitters, so please join me! For aspiring writers, same thing. Just keep writing, keep revising, and keep submitting. Perseverance is the name of the game. :)
Thanks so much for sharing your time with us Terry, it’s been a pleasure!

TS: Thanks so much for having me, Kimberly!! :)
To learn more about Terry Spear and her books, please visit her website: www.terryspear.com

Kimberly Swan, Darque Reviews

Sunday, March 1, 2009

I've Been Nominated....

Thanks so much to Mishel from Mis(h)takes for the Fabulous Blog nomination!

Here are the rules:
List five things you are obsessed with/addicted to and nominate five fabulous blogs to pass this award on to!

5 Obsessions/Addictions:

1. Reading – There’s rarely a time when I’m not in the middle of reading a book and bringing it along wherever I go.

2. Horror movies – I’ve watched them since I was a kid and continue to see every one of them I can.

3. Organizing – I am completely unorganized, but work non-stop at trying to organize everything around me. Yep, makes no sense to me either. *sigh*

4. Studio G Stamps – If you’re not a paper crafter (card making, scrapbooking, etc), you probably have no idea what these are. They’re small acrylic stamps that are released as sets, but sold individually so that for the most part you have to visit every craft store in your area trying to complete a set (or find someplace online to order from). *grin*

5. Gibble’s White Cheddar Cheese Puffys – For me these rank up there as the most heavenly snack food and I don’t buy them too often or I’d eat them every day.

5 nominations:

Rachael from Enchanted by Books

Samantha from Sam’s Book Blog

Stacy from Scooper Speaks

Ruth from Ruthie’s Book Reviews

Amber from Amberkatze’s Book Blog