Under Her Skin

Under Her Skin

Description:

 She’s lucky he’s a charmer…

Lindi Parker works hard at being human, not an easy task for a snake shifter. She has no desire to search for others like her—until a new case changes everything. When Lindi learns that she she’s not the only shapeshifter in the world, she also realizes she might be next on a killer’s list.

In order to save herself and the abused children she works with, she will have to team up with Dr. Kade Nevala, a member of the shifter tribe responsible for eradicating weresnakes—and the most attractive man Lindi’s ever met. Even more terrifying, she’ll need to embrace her serpent side, a choice that has enormous consequences for Lindi, and for everyone around her.

Excerpt:

He took a step forward, again seeming to loom over me. I leaned farther back, but I was trapped—I would either have to climb up on the bed or push my way past him. I wasn’t sure which would be better.

Then it was too late—he grabbed my upper arms and stared into my eyes. His hands burned hot against my skin. His eyes, too, glittered feverishly, golden highlights churning through the brown.

The intensity of his stare captured me. I drew in another breath, full of the scent of him, and my head swam. Again the color leached out of the room. This time, though, I couldn’t look away from him, couldn’t hide the way my eyes changed, the pupils narrowing and lengthening. The room shifted into shades of gray, and his golden eyes turned silvery as they held my own.

He inhaled sharply as he saw the transformation and his hands tightened convulsively.

“How are you here?” he whispered, shaking his head.

He pulled me closer to him, staring into my eyes. My pulse pounded in my temples. The muscles of my abdomen started to roil; I was about to shift, and I couldn’t control it.

And I might just be okay with that, some quiet, still part of my mind whispered from far away, because this man terrified me. I might have a better chance against him in my serpent form.

But something—some instinct deeper than thought—urged me to maintain my humanity.

I still couldn’t break eye contact; his gaze was hypnotic.

He leaned in and kissed me.

Review

Under Her Skin by Margo Bond Collins is an enjoyable shifter read and a new approach to a werewolf-laden genre. I liked Lindi, the main character who shifts into a snake form, and Dr. Kade Nevala. Their first meeting and instant chemistry (if you can call it that) set the stage for what the reader knows will be an unforgettable relationship.

After their first serendipitous meeting, the mysterious death of young girls with a connection to Lindi and Dr. Nevala propels the reader through the novel and keeps the main characters side by side.

So what did I want more of? I wished for more description, especially the first time Lindi shifted into her snake self.  I had a hard time picturing what she looked like in this otherwordly form. In general, I would have like more descriptions of all the characters, but the story was otherwise strong, enjoyable, and easy to read. For those readers who like shifters, mystery, and romance, this book is for you.  4 STARS.

Bio:

Margo Bond Collins RWA Photo

Margo Bond Collins is addicted to coffee (mmm…caffeine) and SF/F television, especially Supernatural (mmm…Winchesters). She writes paranormal and contemporary romance, urban fantasy, and paranormal mystery. She lives in Texas with her daughter and several spoiled pets. Although she teaches college-level English courses online, writing fiction is her first love. She enjoys reading urban fantasy and paranormal fiction of any genre and spends most of her free time daydreaming about heroes, vampires, ghosts, werewolves, and the women who love (and sometimes fight) them.

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No Getting Over You by Shirleen Davies

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No Getting Over You – Book Seven, MacLarens of Fire Mountain Contemporary Romance Series
 
Cassie MacLaren has come a long way since being dumped by her long-time boyfriend, a man she believed to be her future. Successful in her job at MacLaren Enterprises, dreaming of one day leading one of the divisions, she’s moved on to start a new relationship, having little time to dwell on past mistakes.
 
Matt Garner loves his job as rodeo representative for Double Ace Bucking Stock. Busy days and constant travel leave no time for anything more than the occasional short-term relationship—which is just the way he likes it. He’s come to accept the regret of leaving the woman he loved for the pro rodeo circuit.
 
The future is set for both, until a chance meeting ignites long buried emotions neither is willing to face.
 
Forced to work together, their attraction grows, even as multiple arson fires threaten Cassie’s new home of Cold Creek, Colorado. Although Cassie believes the danger from the fires is remote, she knows
the danger Matt poses to her heart is real
.
 
While fighting his renewed feelings for Cassie, Matt focuses on a new and unexpected opportunity offered by MacLaren Enterprises—an opportunity that will put him on a direct collision course with Cassie.
 
Will pride and self-preservation control their future? Or will one be strong enough to make the first move, risking everything, including their heart?
 
No Getting Over You, book seven in the MacLarens of Fire Mountain Contemporary series, is a full-length novel with an HEA.
 
Description:
 
“Well, I should be going. Thanks for the beer.” Slipping a hand under the strap of her purse, she paused when Matt’s hand gripped her arm.
“Don’t leave yet. Stay and talk to me for a while.”
Glancing down at his hand, feeling the same jolt she’d always felt when he touched her, she bit her bottom lip, then pulled her arm free. “I really should head out.”
“Please, Cass.”
She’d seen that look before, knew he needed the comfort only a familiar soul could provide. For a brief moment, she wished he wanted her to stay because he still had feelings for her, not just because he needed the company of someone familiar. Pushing the foolish thought from her mind, she settled back on her chair.
“All right, for a little bit.” Pulling her unfinished beer toward her, she took a sip, looking up at the television.
“We got a lot accomplished today.”
She could feel his gaze boring into her, causing her skin to prickle with heat.
“Yes…yes, we did.” She could hear the slight rise in her voice.
“I think we can wrap up tomorrow.”
Clearing her throat, she glanced over at him. “Then where will you go?”
“Crooked Tree to meet with Skye. Possibly Mitch and Sean,” he answered, mentioning her cousins. “Do you ever go up that way?”
“I’ve been there twice. I’m due to go again. Skye wants us to meet with some of the rodeo committees together. She believes it will make a stronger impact on them if we both show up.” Cassie gripped her glass tighter, quelling the almost overpowering urge to reach out, run her fingers up his neck, and play with the long hair at his nape.
“You’re welcome to ride up with me.”
“What?” Her eyes widened as panic rippled through her. “No. I couldn’t do that. It would be crazy to…” Her voice trailed off as she gulped down the last of her beer, reaching for her purse again. “Look, I really have to leave.” She headed for the door, not looking back.
“Cass, wait up.” Matt dashed ahead of her, holding the door open. “I’ll walk you to your truck.”
“It’s not necessary—”
“Yes, it is.” He placed his hand on the small of her back, ignoring the heat which flamed at the contact as they walked the short distance to her truck.
Rummaging in her purse, she pulled out the keys, groaning when they slipped from her hand.
“I’ll get it.” Matt grabbed the keys and unlocked her door, then held it open, but blocked her entry. “I’m sorry if I said something wrong.”
Wanting only to get inside and get away, she shook her head. “You didn’t say anything wrong. I just need to leave.” She lifted her face, chin jutting toward him.
“Always in a hurry. Always somewhere to go.” He lifted his hand, letting a finger trail down her cheek, along the line of her jaw, then down her neck.

Excitement mingled with fear at his touch, causing what felt like a swarm of butterflies to pool in her belly. She had to get away from him. Now.

 

Bio:

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Shirleen Davies writes romance—historical, contemporary, and romantic suspense. She grew up in Southern California, attended Oregon State University, and has degrees from San Diego State University and the University of Maryland. During the day she provides consulting services to small and mid-sized businesses. But her real passion is writing emotionally charged stories of flawed people who find redemption through love and acceptance. She now lives with her husband in a beautiful town in northern Arizona.
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Awakening the Fire by Ally Shields

Awakening the Fire (2)

Book Description: 

It’s her first murder case…

Twenty-three-year-old Ari Calin has sworn to keep the peace in the Olde Town district of Riverdale, and most of the time the Otherworlders cooperate. The vampires, werewolves and other magical creatures go about their business, living side by side with humans, until the foreign wolves arrive and a virtual reality drug hits the streets. Violence erupts, and Ari needs more than her witch fire, weapons, and potions to stop the madness.

Joining forces with a human police officer, Lt. Ryan Foster, and a way-too-sexy vampire singer, Andreas De Luca, Ari hunts for the enemy—from the vampire strip clubs to the caverns under the city. Every step draws Ari and her companions deeper into an old feud and closer to the brink of a supernatural war.

 

Excerpt :

(Despite the friction and mistrust between them, Ari has come to Andreas’s supper club to ask for his help on her murder case.)

The vampire’s coal-black eyes found her and silken threads of magic wrapped her in a soft web. The room faded away. She floated as in a dream, warm and safe. A place to linger forever. Her witch magic began to sing in concert with his, and Ari called it back to her. The effort brought her out of his web with a jolt.

Damn, how strong was he? She wrapped her magical aura around her. As long as she kept it in place, his magic was held at bay. Then, mercifully, the song was over. Andreas bowed to a wildly applauding audience and left the stage.

“Good evening.” Startled, she stared at him.

“Uh, hello.” How did he move so fast? He produced a polite smile.

“If you will come this way.” He waved a hand toward a hallway on the left.

Ari hesitated. A meeting in private? She hadn’t anticipated that.

His brows rose. “We have twenty minutes.”

Swallowing her doubts, Ari preceded him down the hall. It was better this way, she told herself. Fewer interruptions. At least she knew her time parameters. He ushered her past four closed doors, not stopping until they reached an exit door at the end. He touched a security panel, the door opened, and they stepped into a paved lane leading to the rear parking lot. Dense trees lined the opposite side of the lane. Total privacy.

The night was pleasantly cool. The crisp cleanness of fall filled the air. Ari hung back and watched her companion as he stopped in the middle of the lane. Andreas arched his shoulders and threw back his head, breathing deeply. For a moment all Ari could think about was how sexy he looked.

“I hope you don’t mind talking out here. It has been a long evening, and I needed the fresh air.”

“Not at all. It’s nice.” She looked up at the stars, pinpoints in an uncluttered sky, to keep from looking at him. “What was that last song you sang?”

“An Italian love song. Did you enjoy it?”

“Amazing.”

He turned to look at her. “It was, or I was?” His voice invited a broader interpretation.

She smiled. “Both,” she said, not bothering to hedge. “But who’s fishing for compliments now?”

“Touché.” His familiar laugh came then, rich and intimate, strangely companionable.

Review

I was hooked from page one.  When we first meet Ari on patrol as Guardian of Olde Town, the reader can tell she is going to be a character you want to read about long into the night.  She is smart, sassy, and believable.  I also loved our introduction mysterious and intriguing Andreas De Luca.  He’s not fooling Ari, but there is something between them…As a reader, I wanted to know exactly what that might be.

I am a huge fan of paranormal romance and urban fiction, having read Charlaine Harris, Patricia Briggs, and Kim Harrison in the past.  I lost interest in Sookie Stackhouse when there were too many creatures and too many crazy plot twists.  While shields introduces many creatures and a complex plot, I still was able to suspend disbelief and accept the world she built.  Add in a little murder and mayhem and you have an excellent read.  4.5/5.

Bio

 
Ally Shields grew up in the Midwest, taught school on the East Coast, has visited forty-two of our states, and currently resides near Des Moines, Iowa, with her miniature pinscher, Ranger. Writing has always been a part of her life, and in late 2008, after  a career in law and juvenile justice, she turned to full-time fiction writing. Her first urban fantasy novel, Awakening the Fire, was published in 2012, followed by six additional books in the series. She loves to travel in the US and abroad and incorporates many of those settings into her books. Ally enjoys talking with readers and is active in social media.

 

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