H&H Reads <i>A Breath of Scandal</i> (5 of 6) H&H Reads A Breath of Scandal (5 of 6) Elizabeth Essex Ready to be reckless? Join us for a read-along of Elizabeth Essex's A Breath of Scandal <i>The House on Blackberry Hill</i>: Excerpt The House on Blackberry Hill: Excerpt Donna Alward "He felt a shiver of anticipation that had...everything to do with the client." <i>The Billionaire Biker</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Billionaire Biker: Exclusive Excerpt Jackie Ashenden "Her best friend. Her first lover. And the boy who’d left her..." <i>No Sunshine When She's Gone</i>: Exclusive Excerpt No Sunshine When She's Gone: Exclusive Excerpt Kate Angell "He liked holding her, he realized..."
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Oct 25 2013 3:00pm

Archangel's Legion by Nalini SinghNalini Singh
Archangel’s Legion
Jove / October 29, 2013 / $7.99 print, $5.99 digital

Angels are falling from the sky in New York, struck down by a vicious, unknown force.

Vampires are dying impossibly of disease.

Guild hunter Elena Deveraux and the Archangel Raphael must discover the source of the wave of death before it engulfs their city and their people, leaving New York a ruin and Raphael’s Tower under siege by enemy archangels.

Yet even as they fight desperately to save the city, an even darker force is stirring, its chill eyes trained on New York…and on Raphael. Rivers of crimson and nightmares given flesh, the world will never again be the same…

In Nalini Singh’s Archangels series, angels aren’t the type to wear haloes and sing praise or go around doing good deeds and saving souls. These angels are the most dominant beings on the earth, and the oldest and deadliest of those are the Archangels. The Archangels have divided the earth into territories and they mercilessly rule over the humans and vampires in their provinces. The battle over these territories is neverending; an Archangel must always be on the alert for the scheming and plotting of the other Archangels.

[Sounds positively exhausting...]

Oct 22 2013 9:30am

Dark Witch by Nora RobertsNora Roberts
Dark Witch
Berkley / October 29, 2013 / $17.00 print, $9.99 digital

With indifferent parents, Iona Sheehan grew up craving devotion and acceptance. From her maternal grandmother, she learned where to find both: a land of lush forests, dazzling lakes, and centuries-old legends.


County Mayo, to be exact. Where her ancestors’ blood and magic have flowed through generations—and where her destiny awaits.

Iona arrives in Ireland with nothing but her Nan’s directions, an unfailingly optimistic attitude, and an innate talent with horses. Not far from the luxurious castle where she is spending a week, she finds her cousins, Branna and Connor O’Dwyer. And since family is family, they invite her into their home and their lives.

When Iona lands a job at the local stables, she meets the owner, Boyle McGrath. Cowboy, pirate, wild tribal horsemen, he’s three of her biggest fantasy weaknesses all in one big, bold package.

Iona realizes that here she can make a home for herself—and live her life as she wants, even if that means falling head over heels for Boyle. But nothing is as it seems. An ancient evil has wound its way around Iona’s family tree and must be defeated. Family and friends will fight with each other and for each other to keep the promise of hope—and love—alive…

Nora Roberts’s newest book, Dark Witch, takes readers on a trip to the land of full of green fields, old ruins, and lots of magick. This is not the first time that Nora Roberts has presented us with a trilogy which will build up to epic battle of good vs. evil, nor is it the first time she has traveled the scenic back roads of Ireland, but Dark Witch is as much a story about the connection of family (“blood talks to blood”) as it is a story of witches and magic.

[Witches and magic and romance, oh my...]

Oct 14 2013 10:44am

Daryl and Carol in The Walking Dead Season 4As we enjoyed The Walking Dead's Season 4 premiere last night, I couldn't stop thinking about the changes in the relationships of our characters, more particularly the romantic relationships.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of The Walking Dead, including last night's episode, 4x01, “Thirty Days Without an Accident.” Enjoy!

We watched Maggie and Glen’s relationship begin in Season 2 on the farm, when a trip to the pharmacy leads to sex. We have also watched the torture they endured during Season 3 at the hands of Merle and The Governor. Even though they survived, the relationship faltered under Glen’s feelings of failure in not being able to protect Maggie and upon his return to the prison, becoming overbearing towards her and dictating what she could and couldn’t do. By the end of Season 3, their love had proven strong enough to weather that storm and we saw Glen proposing to Maggie, and we cried. Whether that was from the beauty of the moment or the fact that Glen gave her an engagement ring that he cut off of a walker’s hand, I’m not too sure. The question for this season seems to be whether or not there will be a baby in Glen and Maggie’s future.

[How could the others pair up?...]

Oct 10 2013 3:00pm

Heart of Obsidian by Nalini SinghSome of the best villains in literature are men with a grand plan, whether it is revenge or world domination. These men have set their goal, usually from a young age, and have spent their lives setting their plans into motion and creating their own rules for achieving that objective.

In the following paranormal series, our villains have also set themselves above those villains who would destroy the innocent just for pleasure. These are villains who will cross into the dark grey shadows but never go so far that we can’t secretly root for them. And once we know their ultimate goals, we can’t help but love them, evil deeds and all.

This year Nalini Singh gave us Heart of Obsidian, finally revealing the name of The Ghost. The Ghost has been working behind the scenes pulling the strings and attempting to take over the psy-net. Kaleb Krychek knew at a young age that he needed reach the level of the psy-counsel and he had set his goal towards becoming a member, going so far as disposing of opponents whenever necessary. He has been building his power both politically and psychokinetically since his teens. Everything Kaleb has done to gain his power, we find out, has been done so he can locate the one person who means something to him.

[With great power...etcetera etcetera etcetera...]

Oct 1 2013 9:30am

Torn by Kim KarrKim Karr
Intermix / October 1. 2013 / $11.16 print, $3.79 digital

Rock star River Wilde brought Dahlia London back from the brink of hopelessness with his unwavering love and devotion. But their entangled history is about to test the strength of their relationship…

Dahlia was certain she had found true love and met her "Once in a Lifetime’ when she reconnected with River. But Dahlia’s world comes crashing down when someone from her past resurfaces, and all of River’s carefully hidden secrets are exposed.

River wants to show Dahlia that life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass—it’s about dancing in the rain. But how many times can one broken heart be mended? Will River and Dahlia be able to stay together or will they be torn apart?

In Kim Karr’s Torn (Book 2 in the Connections series), Dahlia’s past has come back to tear at the foundation of her relationship with River. But it might just be River’s demons that will shatter everything—River’s father was a musician who chased the spotlight falling just short of the fame he wanted, not once, but twice. After his second failure, the only thing he chased was the bottom of a bottle.

[Can they make it through this trial?...]

Sep 30 2013 3:15pm

Targeted by Katie ReusKatie Reus
Targeted (Deadly Ops #1)
Signet / October 1, 2013 / $7.99 print, $5.99 digital

Former Marine sniper and current NSA agent Jack Stone has a new face to go with his new identity. But he still has the same tortured memories—which include the woman he let get away years ago, when they were teenagers. Now his new assignment in Miami will put him so close to the woman he’s never been able to forget, he could reach out and touch her—if only she weren’t under suspicion.

When Sophie Moreno uncovers evidence linking the medical supply company she works for with arms smuggling—and worse—she doesn’t know who to turn to. After a shocking betrayal, she realizes the only person she can trust is a mysterious new person in the company—a man with hauntingly familiar eyes.

As Sophie questions her intense attraction to this man and Jack struggles not to blow his cover, the two of them must race against the clock to stop terrorists from killing scores of people—starting with them.

In the first book of her new Deadly Ops series, Targeted, Katie Reus introduces Marine sniper Sam Kelly. But he's not Sam Kelly anymore; the NSA approaches Sam with an offer to leave the Marines and join them, and all he had to do is become someone else. Sam doesn’t hesitate before accepting. As a child, Sam had been tossed from foster home to foster home. He has no family. The only person Sam ever loved was another kid in the foster system, Sophie Moreno. While he could, he protected Sophie from harm and dreamed of creating a life where they would be together forever. But the hard life of a foster kid destroyed any future for Sam and Sophie. Sam lost the only person who ever mattered to him and he welcomes the chance to become someone else.

[Here's to a new beginning...]

Sep 13 2013 2:00pm

Thankless in Death by J.D. RobbJ.D. Robb
Thankless in Death
Putnam Adult / September 17, 2013 / $27.95 print, $14.99 digital

Lieutenant Eve Dallas has plenty to be grateful for this season. Hosting Roarke’s big Irish family for the holiday may be challenging, but it’s a joyful improvement on her own dark childhood.

Other couples aren’t as lucky as Eve and Roarke. The Reinholds, for example, are lying in their home stabbed and bludgeoned almost beyond recognition. Those who knew them are stunned—and heartbroken by the evidence that they were murdered by their own son. Twenty-six-year-old Jerry hadn’t made a great impression on the bosses who fired him or the girlfriend who dumped him—but they didn’t think he was capable of this.

Turns out Jerry is not only capable of brutality but taking a liking to it. With the money he’s stolen from his parents and a long list of grievances, he intends to finally make his mark on the world. Eve and her team already know the who, how, and why of this murder. What they need to pinpoint is where Jerry’s going to strike next.

With fall approaching and the holidays soon upon us, we have something else to be thankful for—J.D. Robb's Thankless in Death, the latest investigation featuring Robb's police officer, Lt. Eve Dallas. Even if someone's feeling thankless, we ourselves are thankful for the talent of J.D. Robb (a/k/a Nora Roberts) in creating such memorable characters both in our investigating team and some pretty twisted and creative bad guys (although spoiled-brat-turned-killer, Jerry Reinhold, doesn’t appreciate his parents, his girlfriend, his friends or the luck that keeps him one close step ahead of Dallas and her team).

[He does sound pretty ungrateful...]

Aug 23 2013 3:00pm

The Vampire with the Dragon Tattoo by Kerrelyn SparksKerrelyn Sparks
The Vampire with the Dragon Tattoo
Avon / August 27, 2013 / $7.99 print, $6.99 digital

He's out of control

Dougal Kincaid has something to prove. After being injured in a battle with the Malcontents, he's ready for active duty protecting unsuspecting mortals from these villainous vampires who want to rule the world. But first he has to get control of himself . . . because just the sight of a certain lovely doctor has his injured hand doing some peculiar things, not to mention the sizzling sensation that burns along his dragon tattoo . . .

Vampires? Vampires?! As a scientist, Leah is having trouble believing that these immortal creatures exist. But there they are, standing in front of her, asking for help in solving a genetic puzzle that can save mankind. There's even one in a sexy kilt! Just one look into Dougal's gorgeous green eyes sets her pulse racing. But can she trust him—and the overwhelming desire that refuses to be ignored . . . ?

In The Vampire with the Dragon Tattoo, Kerrelyn Sparks finally gives us the full story behind the quiet and reserved Dougal Kincaid, who was seriously wounded in a battle against the evil, malcontent vampires.

Dougal became a vampire in 1746, but four years ago, he lost his hand in a sword battle. He knows he should be grateful not to have lost his undead life that day, but some days that is easier to remember than others. His friends mean well when they keep asking about his hand, and when they tease him with names like Bionic Man and Terminator, but he wants to be remembered for something more than just his missing appendage.

[And who can blame him?...]

Aug 20 2013 4:30pm

Feel the Rush by Kelsie LeverichKelsie Leverich
Feel the Rush: A Hard Feelings Novel
Intermix / August 20, 2013 / $3.99 digital

Picking the wrong men is a talent Meagan Mitchell has perfected. She’s sweet, confident, beautiful—and single. With her thirtieth birthday sneaking up on her, she needs a new plan. No more Mr. Wrongs or Mr. Bads. It’s time to find Mr. Safe....

Army captain Reed Porter lives for the thrill—an Airborne Jumpmaster with a rush addiction. He’s sexy and playful, and he quickly tempts Meagan with his rich Southern drawl and sinful looks. But slowing down and settling down are not on his agenda, making him exactly the type of man Meagan wants to avoid.…

As their undeniable attraction heats up, Meagan has to decide if she’s willing to risk everything on a chance at love with a reckless charmer. Is she brave enough to bet her future—and her heart—on Mr. Thrill? Or will Reed finally learn that the feeling of a safe landing is just as addicting as the rush of the fall?

In Kelsie Leverich’s first novel, Ronnie Clark was a woman who was not interested in finding a happily ever after. The best she was willing to offer was a good time right now. No ties. No future. In Feel the Rush, Meagan Mitchell is just the opposite, feeling the pressure of her upcoming birthday. She’ll be hitting the big 3-0 in a few weeks, and her life has not turned out the way she had planned. She wants the white picket fence in the suburbs and the minivan. By this point in her life, she expected to have a loving husband and beautiful little children. Right now her love life consists of her two cats, and with no prospects on the horizon, she is in serious jeopardy of ending up as a crazy cat lady.

[We can't have that...]

Jul 31 2013 2:30pm

Tall, Dark, and Vampire by Sara HumphreysSara Humphreys
Tall, Dark and Vampire
Sourcebooks / August 6, 2013 / $6.99 print & digital

The last person Olivia Hollingsworth expected to see at her Greenwich Village vampire club was her one true love, Doug Paxton—whom she believed to be dead for centuries. Olivia thought she had moved on, but when Doug reappears, her heart knows she'd rather die than lose him again.

Ever since Doug can remember, a red-haired siren has haunted his dreams. He never thought she could be real until he goes to investigate a murder at Olivia's night club. However, as the bodies keep piling up at her feet, he must fight to prove her innocence—even if it costs him his life…

Sara Humphreys’s Tall, Dark and Vampire—the first novel in her newest series, Vamps in the City—introduces us to a paranormal world located within New York City. There's a murderer in Greenwich Village, killing with a viciousness that can only be personal. When these murders lead to the doorstep of The Coven, a private club, Detective Doug Paxton is not far behind the killer’s trail. Doug doesn't know the beautiful owner of the club, Olivia Hollingsworth, as well as most of her employees are vampires, but he knows something is off. Since the last place all of the victims were seen was Olivia’s nightclub, he needs to find out exactly what they are hiding.

[Put all the clues together and what do you find?...]

Jul 29 2013 4:30pm

Cynthia Eden
Harlequin Intrigue / July 30, 2013 / $5.50 print, $4.99 digital

Two years ago Gunner Ortez saved Sydney Sloan's life on a mission gone wrong. And ever since then, he's been watching her back. Now a hostage-rescue mission is about to blow the Elite Ops agents' lives apart once again. 

Working side by side back in the jungles of Peru, the heat between Sydney and Gunner is hotter than ever—and so are the threats to their lives. With the danger escalating, Sydney knows Gunner is her only hope at successfully completing their assignment. But the ex-SEAL who arouses passion she'd only dreamed about also poses the greatest risk to the secret she carries in her heart…and in her belly.

In Cynthia Eden’s latest book, Sharpshooter, the deep feelings which have been simmering for the last two years between two members of the EOD team finally bubbles over. Gunner Ortiz has loved Sydney Sloan from the moment he met her, but Sydney was engaged to marry Gunner’s brother, Slade. When Slade goes down during a mission in Peru two years ago and Gunner and Sydney barely made it out themselves, their shared grief turned their mutual attraction into guilt, but leaning on each other for the last few years has strengthened the foundation of their relationship.

[Where do we go from here?...]

Jun 30 2013 1:00pm

A Cursed Embrace by Cecy RobsonCecy Robson
A Cursed Embrace
Signet / July 2, 2013 / $7.99 print & digital

Celia Wird and her three sisters are just like other twentysomething girls—with one tiny exception: They are the products of a curse that backfired and gave each of them unique powers that made them, well, a little weird.…

After Celia Wird and her sisters help master vampire Misha save his family, their powers are exposed to the supernatural community of the Lake Tahoe region. But fame comes at a price, and being “weird” isn’t always welcome.

To make matters worse, Celia desires the love of Alpha werewolf Aric, but his pack is bent on destroying their relationship to preserve his pureblood status. And once weres start turning up dead—with evidence pointing to the vampires—she must face the prospect of losing Aric forever. But the chaos only masks a new threat. An evil known as the Tribe has risen—and their sights are set on Celia and her sisters.

In Cecy Robson’s second book of the Weird Girl series, A Cursed Embrace, there is one thing Celia Wird knows for sure, it might sound great to be the focus of a gorgeous alpha werewolf and a sexy Master vampire, but these powerful males want more than just friendship from Celia—and both want to be the one to protect her from harm. Celia is a girl with claws of her own and she knows how to use them. She is used to being the one in charge of everyone else’s safety, so she’s not a girl who likes to hide behind a man, even ones as strong as Aric and Misha.

[She's the hero of her own story...]

Jun 28 2013 9:30am

MacRieve by Kresley ColeKresley Cole
Gallery / July 2, 2013 / $25.00 print, $10.67 digital

Uilleam MacRieve believed he’d laid to rest the ghosts of his boyhood. But when a brutal torture revives those ancient agonies and destroys his Lykae instinct, the proud Scot craves the oblivion of death. Until he finds her—a young human so full of spirit and courage that she pulls him back from the brink.

Seized for the auction block, Chloe Todd is forced to enter a terrifying new world of monsters and lore as a bound slave. When offered up to creatures of the dark, she fears she won’t last the night. Until she’s claimed by him—a tormented immortal with heartbreaking eyes, whose touch sets her blood on fire.

With enemies circling, MacRieve spirits Chloe away to the isolated Highland keep of his youth. But once he takes her to his bed, his sensual mate becomes something more than human, evoking his savage past and testing his sanity. On the cusp of the full moon, can he conquer his worst nightmare to save Chloe . . . from himself?

Kresley Cole’s latest Immortals After Dark book MacRieve might have been titled after Uilleam MacRieve, one of the Hot and Hotter Lykae twins, but the star of this story is Chloe Todd. Chloe Todd, also known as “Baby T-Rex,” is the star playmaker for the Seattle Reign Women’s Soccer team. At the age of five, Chloe had known that soccer would be her ultimate goal. In fact, Chloe had a way of knowing almost instantly what was going to be most important to her.

[Chloe explains it all...]

Jun 18 2013 9:30am

Twisted by Rebecca ZanettiRebecca Zanetti
eKensington / June 20, 2013 / $2.99 digital

Maggie is a wolf shifter who was captured and experimented on by the Kurjans. Now that a cure has finally been found for shifters (although not for vampire mates or witches), she can concentrate on creating a new life for herself and finally accepting that her memories are gone forever. Most memories, that is. Sometimes in the hazy world between dreams and dawn, she hears a Scottish voice, dark and deep, that sounds suspiciously like wolf-shifter Terrent Vilks. A man she happened to anger by kidnapping a few years back. Hey, it was for a good cause.

Terrent Vilks knows more than he’s let on for the past several years. After digging for answers, he knows exactly why the demons want Maggie dead. And he remembers his past with Maggie…very well. She is finally where he wants her. Now all he has to do is discover what exactly the Kurjans did to her, beat the demons into so much submission they leave her alone, and get her to fall in love with him. Again. Good thing he’s used to wrangling monsters.

Twisted, the latest book in Rebecca Zanetti’s Dark Protector series, gives us the missing pieces from the life of the wolf-shifter Maggie. The vampires' mortal enemies, the Kurjans, have been infecting vampire mates and shifters with their Virus-27 for 10 years now. When they first developed their virus, they certainly weren’t against testing it on live subjects. In fact, they had incredible results turning shifters into werewolves, making them into mindless and controllable killing machines.

[That seems...unpleasant...]

Jun 14 2013 9:30am

The Secrets of Mia Danvers by Robyn DeHartRobyn DeHart
The Secrets of Mia Danvers
Intermix / June 18, 2013 / $3.99 digital

Since losing her sight in a childhood accident, Mia Danvers has resided in a small cottage on the vast Carrington estate. Thought to be dead, Mia lives a life of virtual seclusion—until one night, while walking home, she happens upon a horrendous crime.

Alex Foster, Eighth Duke of Carrington, lives according to society’s expectations for him. He’s never met the woman who lives in the cottage at the edge of his property. But when she arrives at his door in the pouring rain terrified and claiming she has witnessed a murder, she seizes his attention.

Mia is determined to help the authorities track down the culprit, even though the only person willing to accept her aid is the handsome, arrogant duke. Working closely together proves difficult as Mia’s beauty and independence tempts Alex to ignore convention and follow his desire. But what neither of them know is that this murderer has struck before in Whitechapel, taunting the British press only to vanish—a ruthless killer who knows that Mia is the only living witness to his crime.

Mia Danvers, the heroine of Robyn DeHart's The Secrets of Mia Danvers, was only 16 when her mothers and sisters dropped her off at the little cottage on the edge of the property belonging to the Duke of Carrington. After a riding accident left her without sight, her mother didn’t have time for a damaged daughter who would never find a husband. She had two other girls who needed to find husbands to support the family now that their father was dead. Although her mother intended to leave Mia there alone, her governess and dearest friend Rachel would not abandon her and together the two women made a life in the little cottage that would become a place for Mia to spread her wings.

[At least until her life gets turned upside-down again, huh?...]

Jun 13 2013 4:30pm

What the Duke Desires by Sabrina JeffriesSabrina Jeffries
What the Duke Desires
Pocket / June 18, 2013 / $7.99 print, $6.64 digital

Maximilian Cale, the Duke of Lyons, long ago buried his grief for his missing elder brother, Peter, who was presumed dead after being kidnapped. When a mysterious note arrives from Tristan Bonnaud asserting that the Duke's brother is alive, it leads Max straight to the winsome Lisette Bonnaud, illegitimate daughter of a viscount and Tristan's sister. Soon he and Lisette are traveling to Paris posing as husband and wife, in search of Tristan, who has disappeared. And the longer he spends with Lisette, the easier it is for Max to see that the line between dukedom and desire is easier to cross than he imagined.

What the Duke Desires is the first book in Sabrina Jeffries's new The Duke’s Men series, and although the title indicates that we should be more interested in the duke, this story is much more fascinating in following what Lisette desires.

[And what does Lisette desire, hmm?...]

May 30 2013 11:00am

Sleeping with the Entity by Cat DevonCat Devon
Sleeping with the Entity
St. Martin's Press / June 4, 2013 / $7.99 print / $7.19 digital

Meet Daniella Delaney. She’s all ready to open her shop, Heavenly Cupcakes, in one of Chicago’s sleepier districts. But she’s having a hard time convincing the local business association—namely Nick St. George—that she’s a good addition to the neighborhood. Daniella hopes that her famous red velvet cupcakes will be enough to melt any man’s heart. But Nick is no ordinary man. He’s got fangs.

As leader of the Vamptown clan, Nick has no intention of letting Daniella breathe new life into his old haunts. But something about her leaves Nick hungry…for more. He can’t control her mind like other humans, a trait that makes Daniella irresistible. Could it be that, for the first time in centuries, Nick has met his match? Love is always a force to be reckoned with. But can this vampire have his cake and eat it too?

How can you go wrong combining cupcakes and vampires? Throw in a good coffee bar and I’m moving into this neighborhood. Cat Devon's first book, Sleeping with the Entity, takes us into the heart of Chicago to an area known secretly as Vamptown.

Daniella’s dream is to open up her own cupcake bake shop. Her mother was a baker and felt that cupcakes were all about providing comfort, and Daniella wants to bring that comfort to those around her. When her father offers her one of his buildings with an apartment up top, all rent free, she feels that all her dreams may finally come true. She’ll have her shop ready to open just in time for Halloween, at which time she'll offer some interesting choices: Blood Red Velvet cupcakes, Thriller Killer Chocolate, and Ghostess Twinkies.

[Sounds Tasty!...]

May 25 2013 2:00pm

Forever by Jacquelyn Frank Jacquelyn Frank
Ballantine / May 28, 2013 / $7.99 print / digital

After being brought back from death, police officer Jackson Waverly receives the shock of his life: he has become host to a Bodywalker, a spirit that is reborn in flesh and blood, and part of a proud, ancient race that uses its extraordinary gifts to battle dark, evil forces. Jackson’s spirit is a powerful one—none other than the Egyptian pharaoh Menes, who longs to reunite with his eternal love, the Egyptian queen Hatshepsut.

While Menes is obsessed with finding the perfect vessel for his queen, Jackson cannot stop thinking about Dr. Marissa Anderson, the gorgeous precinct shrink who keeps pushing him to confront his grief over the loss of his K-9 partner. But what Marissa really arouses most in Jackson is intense desire, which is exactly what Menes is looking for. To fight a great enemy, pharaoh and queen must join; but to host Hatshepsut, Marissa will first have to die. Fate has given Jackson a profound choice: save Marissa from Menes’s plan or keep an entire species from the brink of extinction.

Jacquelyn Frank’s newest World of Nightwalker’s novel, Forever, introduces us to the concept of Bodywalkers—when the ancient Egyptians were worshiping their Gods and practicing their art of preparing the dead for life eternal in the afterworld, they did not realize that this grab for eternal life would anger the God Ra. As a punishment, the humans are eternally barred from heaven, and their mummified bodies tether them to the mortal world. Each time they die, they are returned to the Ether, a type of limbo, where they wait until they are strong enough to Bodywalk again.

[What exactly is bodywalking?]

May 23 2013 2:00pm

A Witch's Handbook of Kisses and Curses by Molly HarperMolly Harper
A Witch’s Handbook of Kisses and Curses
Pocket / May 28, 2013 / $7.99 print, $7.59 digital

Nola Leary would have been content to stay in Kilcairy, Ireland, healing villagers at her family’s clinic with a mix of magic and modern medicine. But a series of ill-timed omens and a deathbed promise to her grandmother have sent her on a quest to Half-Moon Hollow, Kentucky, to secure her family’s magical potency for the next generation. Her supernatural task? To unearth four artifacts hidden by her grandfather before a rival magical family beats her to it.

Complication One: The artifacts are lost somewhere in vampire Jane Jameson’s occult bookshop. Complication Two: Her new neighbor Jed Trudeau keeps turning up half-naked at the strangest times, a distraction Nola doesn’t need. And teaming up with a real-life Adonis is as dangerous as it sounds, especially since Jed’s got the face of an angel and the abs of a washboard. Can Nola complete her mission before falling completely under his spell?

A Witch’s Handbook of Kisses and Curses is Molly Harper’s latest trip to Half-Moon Hollow, Kentucky—home to vampires, werewolves and now witches, oh my! Well, maybe just one witch; Nola Leary has come all the way from the very small village of Kilcairy, Ireland, to find Gilbert Wainwright, former lover of her grandmother, although she really doesn’t want to think about that too much. The secret Nana Fee has been keeping all these years is that Gilbert Wainwright is Nola’s grandfather. While Mr. Wainwright might have left Ireland without knowing his passionate encounters with Fiona led to more than just happy memories, Fiona did entrusted him with the McGavock witches’ mystical treasures for safekeeping.

[Mystical treasures, you say?...]

May 22 2013 12:00pm

Styxx by Sherrilyn KenyonAcheron and Styxx, twin brothers not of blood but bonded together by the will of the Gods. Not since Caine and Abel has there been a story of two brothers whose relationship is such a tangle of jealously, pain, and rage. In Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark-Hunter series, Acheron is the leader of the Dark-Hunters. His history goes back over 11,000 years and begins in the Atlantean pantheon. It was foretold to the Atlantean Goddess of Destruction Apollymi that the birth of her son, Apostolos (Acheron), would herald the destruction of the Atlantean Pantheon and bring about the death of all their Gods. So the Gods ordered Apollymi to kill her unborn son. To save him, Apollymi removed him from her womb and put him into the womb of the Queen Aara, Queen of Didymos.

Apollymi twinned him to the son of the King and Queen and tied his life force to that of their own son so they would not destroy him upon his birth.

The boys were born identical to each other, except for one inescapable difference—where Styxx’s eyes are blue, Acheron has the silver swirling eyes of a God, and it was from the moment they opened their eyes that their lives of turmoil began.

“What happened?” I asked.

He looked away.

Kneeling in front of him, I gently brushed the blond hair away from his swollen cheek. “Tell me.”

“She hugged Styxx.”

I knew without asking who she was. He’d been with our mother. I’d never understood how she could be so loving to me and Styxx and yet so cruel to Acheron. “And?”

“I wanted a hug, too.”

Then I saw it. The telltale sign of a boy who wanted nothing more than his mother’s love. —Acheron

[But Styxx's is life is far from perfect too...]