Paranormal romance is one of my favorite categories in the whole genre. There are so, so many great reads there—books that I’ve read and reread so many times it borders on obsessive. But sadly, it’s also the category that I find it most difficult to find new reads in. For every great PNR read, there are 5 craptastic ones. I open each new-to-me series with equal parts excitement and dread. Will THIS be my next binge read? Will THIS be the next series that I pimp to my followers until they get sick of hearing me talk about it? But it’s with a heavy heart that I tell you thatTall, Dark & Deadlydidn’t make it to my keeper shelf. I had LOTS of problems with this one.
If you’re like me and have read a crap ton of paranormal romance over the years, you know that there is a limited quantity of truly original thinking in the category. Now, don’t get me wrong. There are a ton of authors out there who do a great job with the same old vampires, shifters, witches, and fae. I think that great writing can overcome pretty much any overdone trope. But for those who are looking for that rare super-original paranormal series, you don’t really have to look any farther than LE Wilson.
First of all, this one would probably be more adequately shelved in the urban fantasy genre, but there’s a very obvious love interest that plays a big part in the story, so I feel fairly comfortable classifying it as paranormal for the purposes of placement on our site. (We don’t have an urban fantasy page, OK? Sue us.)
Second of all, this is probably one of the best books I’ve ever DNFd. It was well written, there was intricate world-building, and the characters were interesting and likeable. So what went wrong? Glad you asked.
I’ve been struggling with paranormal romance lately, folks. I’m seeing so many fated mates, and scrappy heroines, and brooding vampires that I’m starting to hate them all. So when I saw an ad for this book on my Facebook timeline, to say I was skeptical would be like saying the Pacific is a little wet, or that cauliflower is a little gross (Side note: cauliflower is HORRIFIC, and anyone who thinks differently... well, you’re entitled to your wrong opinion. Let’s never speak of this again).
I’m a big fan of this author. If you don’t believe me, check out my reviews ofBlood Choice andBlood Submission. I also added her to our list of crazy-talented paranormal romance indie authors everyone should be reading. I readBlood Hungerback in 2014 when it was first released (with a different cover, and a different blurb), so when I heard that the book had recently been professionally re-edited and a new ending (and some other new stuff) had been added, I downloaded right away. (Did I mention it’s also free? BONUS!) Overall, I’m really glad I gave this one another read.
PARANORMAL ROMANCE Publication date:12/31/2017 Kindle Unlimited:Yes Cliffhanger:No Rating:4 out of 5
This book marks the end of the Vampires of Scarlet Harbor trilogy, which I really enjoyed. (Feel free to check out my reviews ofPiercedandHunted)So, this is a little bit of a sad review for me. More bittersweet than sad, I suppose. Sweet because it was an enjoyable read, but bitter because I won’t get any new stories about this group of immensely likeable characters.
Title:Wild Atonement & Wild Reunion Author:Liza Street Publication date:11/1/2017 and 12/06/2017 Kindle Unlimited:Yes Cliffhanger:No
I’ve been a fan of this author for a while now. I read the entire Sierra Prideseries and really enjoyed it, and read and reviewed the first book in this series,Wild Homecoming, back in October. (It was a 4-star read, by the way) So, when the author offered me an ARC of Wild Atonement, I jumped all over it. Then, when I read and loved THAT, I was too impatient to wait for an ARC ofWild Reunion(which was up for pre-order at the time), so I bought it myself. Needless to say, I don’t regret the purchase. Not. One. Bit.
I’m a big fan of this author. I read and enjoyed the first book in this series,Pierced, and thought highly enough of the author’sRiverwoodseries to include Keira Blackwood on our ultimate list of paranormal romance indie authors that everyone should be reading.(And I’m a particularly harsh critic where PNR is concerned, so that’s saying a lot!) I’m really happy to report that I enjoyed this book, too. (It would’ve been a real bummer to be let down after bragging on this author so much!)
Title:Semi-Sane Author:Isabel Jordan Publication date:11/17/2017 Kindle Unlimited:No Cliffhanger:No
In case I haven’t made it abundantly clear, I’m a fan of this series. If you don’t believe me, check out my review of the last book,Semi-Broken. I take every opportunity I can to promote this series because for me, it’s everything I love in a romance: it makes me laugh, it makes me sniffle (because I DO NOT cry, damn it), and it makes me swoon over the sexy, brooding alpha- male hero.
Title:Blood Choice Author:LE Wilson Publication date:10/27/17 Kindle Unlimited:No Cliffhanger:No
Reading paranormal romance has been tough for me lately. Everything I’ve picked up in the past few months has had a “been there, done that” feel to it. (There’s only so many tough, sassy heroines and dark brooding heroes I can take, you know?) But the Deathless Night series is one I’ve stuck with from the beginning, and I wasn’t about to skip the final book, especially when it was about my book boyfriend in the series (Jesse, the warlock). And I have to say a great big thanks to the reading gods (and, you know, the author, of course) for this one, because it helped restore my faith in the paranormal genre as a whole.
Wow, y’all. I knew Celia Aaron was a fan-freakin’-tastic author of dark romance. I mean, I LOVEDThe Bad Guy,Dark ProtectorandNate. But I had NO IDEA she could write the crap out of paranormal romance/urban fantasy. Guess what? SHE CAN.
There’s so much interesting world building in this one that it almost qualifies as urban fantasy.
Title:Wild Homecoming Author:Liza Street Publication date:10/4/2017 Kindle Unlimited:Yes Cliffhanger:No
I’m a big fan of Liza Street. She writes smart, funny, sexy fiction that’s short and super easy to read. And y’all know how much I enjoy a nice easy read. It’s comforting, you know? Like super-soft sweats and slouchy socks on a rainy November day. And thankfully,Wild Homecomingwas just as comforting a read as the rest of theauthor’s backlist.
Ever wonder what men think of the romance novels you love so much? Do they agree with all of thestupid romance novel stigmasthat exist out there? Ever felt like tying one to a chair and forcing him to read one of your favorite romances? Well, I did just that. (Without tying anyone to a chair, of course. The authorities frown upon that.)
Title:Pierced Author:Keira Blackwood Publication date:03/12/2017 Publisher:Amazon Digital Services Kindle Unlimited:Yes Cliffhanger:No Rating:4 out of 5
Amazon blurb Late-night hunts for a crazed serial killer, a vampire-obsessed best friend, and a mountain of classwork is enough for any woman to juggle. But Hannah Lewis isn't just any coed. She happens to make the best microwaved brownies in Scarlet Harbor. Plus, she's a wolf shifter.
On a mission to investigate reports of zombie-like monsters terrorizing the masses, vampire Bennet Pierce is prepared for anything—except for the blue-eyed vixen that changes everything. How can he protect her from harm if he himself is a threat?
Title:Shadow Mine Author:Jennifer Kohout Publication date:11/15/2016 Publisher:Sanguine Publishing Kindle Unlimited:No Cliffhanger:No Rating:4.5 out of 5
Amazon blurb Destroyer. Guardian. Hellhound. Soren is known by many different names, but they all mean the same thing. A hellhound created by Hades, Soren is a guardian of the Underworld, both champion of the innocents and executioner of the damned. He embodies justice and duty, breathes loyalty, and lives by an unbreakable code.
Also created by Hades, Ryot had a very different purpose.