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Showing posts by: Larissa Benoliel click to see Larissa Benoliel's profile
Jun 27 2011 5:21pm

A Breed Apart in Paranormal Romance: Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed Series

Kiss of Midnight by Lara AdrianIn Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed series, the Breed has lived among mortals who remain utterly ignorant of their presence. A dark and secret battle is ongoing between those who seek peace, and only desire to live quietly beside humankind, and those who feel Vampires are supposed to rule over humans and put them in their place, as food.

All Breed are male, and all descend from Otherworldly creatures who arrived on our planet a thousand years earlier. The power of each individual breed is as strong as his closeness to his alien descendant; the closer he is, the stronger he is. Right off the bat we get to meet Lucan, not only from one of the oldest breeds, but also the leader of the Order, which has vowed to protect breed civilians as well as humankind from the indiscriminant killings of Rogue Breeds.

“I have to go to her, Lucan. For my own sanity, if nothing else. If I stay here, I’m not sure what good I’d be, to tell you the truth. She’s the only thing that’s held me together in a very long time. I’m a wreck for this woman, my friend. She owns me now.” - Rio, Midnight Rising (Midnight Breed, #4)

[Okay, that is hot hot hot!...]

May 27 2011 12:42pm

Kate Daniels’s Magic World: Ilona Andrews’s Apocalyptic Atlanta

Magic Bites by Ilona AndrewsKate Daniels, from Ilona Andrews’s Kate Daniels series, exists in a world that has gone through a magic apocalypse. Kate is an agent of the Order of Merciful Aid, a Mercenary Guild member, and a fearless kick-ass woman all around.

The world she lives in is one in which humans have pushed the technological progress too far; magic has returned with a vengeance, and the balance between Magic and Technologic is at best extremely volatile and can be best explained by the creators (Ilona and Andrew Gordon are the writing team behind Ilona Andrews) themselves:

“It comes in waves, without warning, and vanishes as suddenly as it appears. When magic is up, planes drop out of the sky, cars stall, electricity dies. When magic is down, guns work and spells fail.”

It’s an unpredictable, screwed-up world, where unthinking zombie-like Vampires, a wide array of different types of shifters, such as werebears and werehyenas, and many other such supernatural players try to co-exist the best way possible without constantly being at each other’s throats.

[Sounds fun!...]

May 14 2011 5:37pm

Defining Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance: What’s the Difference?

Greywalker by Kat RichardsonIt's a question every paranormal and/or urban fantasy reader encounters in the course of their reading: What's the difference between the two?

For me, Urban Fantasy is all about the paranormal embedded in a modern setting. There might be romance, but the romance is not the primary focus and a happily ever after is never guaranteed.

Some series that come to mind are Kat Richardson’s Greywalker series and the Hollows series by Kim Harrison; these books usually include a love interest and even a boyfriend or another, but the focus of the series is the action, character development, and the plot.

Whereas the first thing that comes to mind when we talk about Paranormal Romance is the happily ever after, in a PNR series or novel, you can absolutely expect that there will be a HEA for a couple in each of the books in the series. The books that come to mind are the Black Dagger Brotherhood series by J.R. Ward, as well as Gena Showalter’s Lords of the Underworld, Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed and Larissa Ione’s Demonica series.

[But that's not all there is to it...]

Apr 22 2011 12:00pm

LGBT Representation in Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance

City of Bones by Cassandra ClareUrban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance are both known for the overabundance of testosterone and the overpopulation of kick-ass heroines and Alpha heroes. If I’m being honest with myself—and with you all—those are some of the very reasons I enjoy these genres so freaking much.

But at the same time, more and more homosexual characters have been showing up in both UF and PNR novels, and that is what I want to talk about today.

You can find gay characters in both young adult and adult titles in the general paranormal genre. Let’s take Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series for example; Marcus Bane is the kind of character who challenges the main ones while making the reader smile:

'We're not dating,' Alec said again.

'Oh?' Magnus said. 'So you're just that friendly with everybody, is that it?'


Apr 2 2011 10:00am

Easy as Alpha, Bite, Curran: Cliches in Paranormal Romance

Wesley Snipes as BladeKick-ass heroines in leather, the old-as-dust vampire that’s still sexy and captures the heart of the young protagonist, the tortured hero that needs the heroine’s love to heal...these are but a few of the innumerous clichés we find in paranormal romance novels.

But clichés are what they are for a reason: they work. In fact, more often than not, they are definitely one of the reasons this genre is such in high demand nowadays.

Let's start off with one of my favorite clichéd heroes: the possessive alpha male. He can be a vampire, a shifter, wizard, or even a fairy prince, but the alpha male is an unchangeable staple in the PNR genre that I doubt that there’s a PNR fan out there that doesn’t have a favorite one; I know I do.

[And the award for best alpha hero goes to...]

Mar 18 2011 10:00am

Wingmance: Number Twos Who Finish First

Buffy the Vampire Slayer CastThe spotlight shines pretty bright when it comes to literary heroines and heroes. It doesn’t really matter if it’s the sexy Alpha Hero everyone wants to have for their own, or if it’s the no-holds-barred kickass heroines/heroes found in Urban Fantasy, those leading men and women have the difficult job of capturing your heart and making you dedicate a lot of your time in reading their stories.

Their lives are so entertaining that it is easy to forget the real world around us. I mean, who wouldn’t rather read about a fairy princess trying to escape certain death by a fairy queen while having a gorgeous prince fall in love with her? Or reading about a vampire warrior fighting against creepy foes who falls in love with a beautiful woman able to make the most hardened and damaged warrior (the vamp, duh!) into a sweetheart?

So many stories to get lost in, so many heroines to worship or heroes to covet. But what makes their stories so compelling? Sometimes it’s what you don’t notice that makes the difference. And that’s where we come to the people who surround the heroes and heroines. The sidekicks and secondary characters who make the heroes and heroines’ stories even more compelling and real.

[Who you callin' a second banana? . . .]