Review: “Gray’s Shadow” by K.A Merikan

TITLE: Gray’s Shadow
AUTHOR: K.A Merikan
SERIES: Kings of Hell MC
PUBLISHER: Acerbi&Villani ltd.
COVER ARTIST: Natasha Snow
GENRE: Paranormal
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: No
LENGTH: 555 pages
RELEASE DATE: Aug 11, 2018
PRICE: $5.99 e-book

BLURB:

— There can be no shadow without the man to cast it. —
Gray. Lost his twin. Will never be complete. Works alone.
Shadow. Monster? Human? Exists to be Gray’s one true companion.
After losing his twin brother, Gray has devoted his life to the Kings of Hell MC. He will do anything to protect his family and that means anything.
Even sell his own shadow to the devil.
Following a fire that left him without one arm, Gray feels pushed to the sidelines. In order to prove to his club that he is still capable of completing dangerous tasks, he will have to team up with the strange creature from the Other Side. Tall, inhumanly strong, and menacing despite the handsome exterior, Shadow is just the tool Gray needs.
The moment Shadow lays his eyes on Gray, he wants to crawl under Gray’s skin and make the human his.
Gray on the other hand isn’t willing to get attached to a monster destined to do the devil’s bidding and disappear once his time is up. Rejected, Shadow has to do everything in his power to convince his human that they belong together.
But as the clock ticks away precious minutes of Shadow’s existence, Gray will have to choose between his loyalty to the Kings of Hell MC and responsibility for the creature he brought into this world.
*
“Do you feel me running through your veins?”
Gray nodded.
*
POSSIBLE SPOILERS:
Themes: motorcycle club, alternative lifestyles, demons, monster, tattoos, secrets, crime, gothic, grief, mourning, enemies to lovers, forced proximity, fish out of water, opposites attract, demisexuality, gentle giant
Genre: Dark, paranormal M/M romance
Erotic content: Scorching hot, emotional, explicit scenes
Length: ~150,000 words (Book 4 in the series)

WARNING: This story contains scenes of violence, offensive language, and morally ambiguous characters.


Gray is a member of the Kings of Hell MC. He devoted his life to the club, after losing his twin brother, and his arm; he agrees to give up his shadow to save Jake (On Your Knees Prospect (king of Hell MC #3))
Shadow wants one thing … Gray. He’s bonded to him, and he wants to belong to him as much as to possess him.
Gray wants nothing to do with Shadow, for him, he’s just a monster, an entity with the purpose to serve Baal and disappear.
3 months, that’s what they have, if Gray wishes never to have met Shadow, Shadow will do everything to convince Gray that they are meant to be.
He can only hope to have enough time for that.

Gray’s Shadow is book four of the King of Hell MC series by K.A Merikan.

No need to tell you how much I love this book and the authors. This series gets better and better with each book, and they always find a way to surprise me.

Gray is a solitary, discreet and reserved. Losing his twin brother broke him (understandable), and Gray is used to staying alone. He loves his brothers and his club, but he doesn’t really fit with them all the time. When Shadow came into his life, Gray only sees a “monster” at first, a “thing” that inhabited a human body. But the more time Gray and Shadow will have to be together, the more Gray will see himself mirrored in Shadow. I loved Gray, he always intrigued me, and this book gives me answers. He’s so lonely, so in pain since his twin’s death, I wanted to cry for him, I understood his tortured soul better, and was happy to read that for once things can turn out beautifully for him. In an unconventional way, but, hey, we’re talking about K.A Merikan, nothing is conventional in this series…even Laurent!

Shadow is FANTASTIC. He’s fabulous, funny (I laughed out loud so many times), kind and pure with some bloody, deadly tendencies. I can’t really describe Shadow, you need to meet him directly, and you’ll understand. He’s beautiful and super funny. He has this duality between a pure, innocent baby and a bloody serial killer. Let’s just say, don’t threaten Gray and you’ll be able to keep your head on your body. I thought no one in this series could beat Laurent in my heart… But here comes Shadow, I completely adored him.

This book was a good addition to the series, while we learn about Shadow and Gray; we also learn a little bit more about Baal and his plan. The authors don’t give us any clue as to how the guys will survive the doom of Baal coming. We only have one book left, and I can’t figure out how our favorite gang will survive, and it starts to get my blood and my anxiety levels a little bit higher.

K.A Merikan gave us another masterpiece, with good writing, a lot of creativity and humor in a complex plot. It was brilliant, and I can only hope to have the last and final episode soon, even if it breaks my heart to say goodbye.

5 OptimuMM’s for Gray and his Shadow!

***I would like to thank the author for the privilege and opportunity of reading this ARC. My review is an honest opinion of the book ***

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review: “Star-Crossed Lover” by Liv Olteano

TITLE: Star-Crossed Lover
AUTHOR: Liv Olteano
SERIES: Dreamcatchers
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
COVER ARTIST: Aaron Anderson
GENRE: Paranormal
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: Yes
LENGTH: 210 pages
RELEASE DATE: August 7, 2018
PRICE: $4.99 – e-book/ $9.99 – paperback

BLURB:

A Dreamcatchers Tale
A love worth crossing the stars for.
Taka has been a dreamcatcher and part of Team 32 for over six decades, but nobody has tempted him like Ginger—a dancer at club Zee. Too bad dreamcatchers aren’t allowed to have meaningful relationships with regular people. His willpower proves a finite resource, though, when a mission at the club means spending much more time around Ginger.
Ginger’s infatuation with Taka is unwavering. When he proves to have some paranormal skills of his own, he earns himself a place on the team—if he wants it. His decision will change his life—not to mention Taka’s—irrevocably.
But living in the now could prove an issue for a man who has as much history as Taka. Can Ginger’s determination help him make his way into Taka’s heart?


Star-Crossed Lover is the second book in the Dreamcatchers series and the twenty-fifth book in the Dreamspun Beyond series by Liv Olteano.

This is the first book that I’ve read by Liv Olteano, and it was okay. I liked the characters, but the plot was a little confusing and messy. And it might have been that I was just missing what had happened in the first book and some of the background details that might have been explained but another of the OptimuMM reviewers reviewed the first book in the series and also had a problem with the plot being confusing and messy. So it just might be the author’s writing style. The plot was good though. I did like the storyline, and I do want to find out what happens next, so I’m going to read the next book when it comes out. My favorite parts of the book were when Taka and Ginger were interacting and when it was explained how they were star-crossed lovers. I kind of wish that they had explained more about their past lives’ struggles and what kept them apart until now. The editing of the book could have been better, but as it was an ARC copy, I’m hoping that they got caught and fixed.

Taka has been part of Team 32 and a dreamcatcher for over six decades, but nobody has tempted him like the dancer at club Zee. It’s too bad that dreamcatchers aren’t allowed to have meaningful relationships with regular people. But that doesn’t stop him from going to the club on his downtime and watching Ginger. His willpower will be put to the test, though, when a mission at the club means spending a lot of time around Ginger. I liked Taka. He was strong, courageous, and protective.

I liked Ginger more than Taka. Taka maybe older than Ginger but it’s Ginger that ends up taking the lead in their relationship, which just confuses Taka because he thinks he should be the more experienced one in the relationship since he’s older. I also liked how unwavering Ginger’s infatuation for Taka is. He’s been flirting with him since he started working for the club about a year ago. When it comes to light that Ginger is from a line of witches and that he would be a good candidate for being a dreamcatcher, I was so excited for Taka since he can now follow his desires and date Ginger.

I also liked how they go on missions and fight the spagas (demons) who suck the lifeforce out of their victims while they are sleeping.
At the end of the book was an exclusive excerpt for the next book in the series Lover Behind Enemy Lines which is going to be about Claw and their captive Nathan Gallagher. I can’t wait to read it.

***The ARC was provided by Dreamspinner Press. My review is an honest opinion of the book ***

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review: “Alpha Unit One, New York” by Chris T.Kat

TITLE: Alpha Unit One, New York
AUTHOR: Chris T.Kat
SERIES: –
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
COVER ARTIST: Cate Ashwood
GENRE: Shapeshifter; Paranrmal; Fantasy
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: No
LENGTH: 161 pages
RELEASE DATE: Jul 27, 2018
PRICE: $5.99 e-book

BLURB:

The cat’s out of the bag….
In a world that accepts shifters as normal and thinks nothing of human/shifter couples, baby shifters and small shifters are treated as subpar. They are not allowed into the more dangerous professions, and their mates have legal control over what they can and cannot do.
Nicholas Reed is about to challenge the established rules. At twenty-eight, Nick has just been accepted into New York’s Alpha Unit One—an elite law enforcement team, composed equally of humans and shifters, that specializes in drug crimes. It is Nick’s dream job. But if they find out what he’s hiding, his career could be destroyed.
Enter a huge complication in the form of Sam Black, an older lion shifter who is the leader of the unit… and Nick’s mate. Nick wants Sam, and he wants to keep his job, but he can’t have them both. He also can’t choose between them.


Nicholas Reese is 28 years-old. He dreams to be a cop and especially a member of the Alpha Unit One. It’s a unit where humans and shifters work together. Nicholas decides to enter this unit as human and does everything in his power to keep his secret safe, but he didn’t plan to meet his true mate in the person of Sam Black an alpha lion shifter and his boss.
They will have to decide what they really want if they want a chance of a future together.

Alpha Unit One, New York is my first book by the author Chris T Kat. I liked this book.

In a world where humans and shifters are equals and live together, the baby shifters aren’t really free to do what they want. Baby-shifters are humans who can shift into the baby’s form of their animal, no matter their ages or sizes. When they’re in this form, they act like little child, so humans and shifters (the adult ones) decided that the baby-shifters can’t have dangerous work (like being a cop) and when they mate, their mates have all power, decisions and responsibilities over them.

Nicholas is an adult, he’s 28 years old. But when he shifts, he becomes a baby snow leopard and that’s where the problem is. He’s a good cop, strong, and mature, but because of his shifted form, people think he’s a kid who needs to be protected. Mating Sam scares him because he refuses to lose his job, but he can’t resist his pull for Sam too. I adore Nick, he’s strong, mature, very smart and super cute. When he shifts he’s just so cute. His shifted form, named Tiny, is so adooooooorable I wanted to put him in my pocket and never let him go.

Sam is an older Lion shifter. He’s strong, fierce, loyal, very protective and hot, like super-hot and I want to do things to him that I can’t really write right now! Sam doesn’t freak out about Nick’s secret, but all his protective instincts kick in, and he tried to protect his baby-mate, even if he’d be hurting him in the process. I sooo love Sam.

I really liked this book. I was afraid when I read the blurb that the book would be a copy of the “Thirds” series by Charlie Cochet, but it wasn’t at all. Yes, it’s a world where shifters and humans live together, and yes, it’s about a unit where shifters and humans are partners, but it ends there. The plot, the characters, the particularities of this universe, are different from the other series, and it was original and pretty good in Alpha Unit One, New York.

I don’t know if it’s the beginning of a series, so I’m torn, let me explain. If it’s the beginning of a series, this book put just all the ingredients for a good series. The main characters, the plot and subplot, and the background are all introduced in the book but not thoroughly, and it’s okay for me because it mean I will learn more about Sam and Nick, their dynamics, their world in the next books. If it’s just a standalone, well, it was good but too superficial for me.

Anyway, if you like a good universe with shifters and humans, I recommend this book, it’s a pleasurable read. And I do hope to have another one (me? greedy? … Naan)

3.5 Stars for The King Lion and his baby prince!

***The ARC was provided by Dreamspinner Press. My review is an honest opinion of the book ***

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review: “Ravensong” by T.J. Klune

TITLE: Ravensong
AUTHOR: T.J. Klune
SERIES: Green Creek
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
COVER ARTIST: Reese Dante
GENRE: Paranormal
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: Yes
LENGTH: 400 pages
RELEASE DATE: Jul 31, 2018
PRICE: $6.99 e-book / $17.99 paperback

BLURB:

Gordo Livingstone never forgot the lessons carved into his skin. Hardened by the betrayal of a pack who left him behind, he sought solace in the garage in his tiny mountain town, vowing never again to involve himself in the affairs of wolves.
It should have been enough.
And it was, until the wolves came back, and with them, Mark Bennett. In the end, they faced the beast together as a pack…and won.
Now, a year later, Gordo has found himself once again the witch of the Bennett pack. Green Creek has settled after the death of Richard Collins, and Gordo constantly struggles to ignore Mark and the song that howls between them.
But time is running out. Something is coming. And this time, it’s crawling from within.
Some bonds, no matter how strong, were made to be broken.


Ravensong…I was waiting so long for this book. I was anxious to read it and a bit afraid because I remember what Wolfsong was doing to me.

When it comes to TJ Klune’s universes, there is not enough words to describe his genious. He handles words to cut right into your feelings. Ravensong is no exception.

Do you remember pinecones and candy canes and epic and awesome? If you are a Klune fan of course you do…

Ravensong continues with the story of Gordon and Mark, one year later to what happened to Ox (if you read Wolfsong, you know what I’m talking about). We learned about Gordo’s childhood, him growing up with the Benetts. After an unfortunate event (no, I’m not telling you that!), he feels betrayed by those he loved. He grows angry with the Benetts but mostly with Mark.
We all know about those stone wolves and what that means when one is given, right? Gordon gives that wolf back to Mark (yes, you will cry like a baby, don’t try to fight it).
The story is from Gordon’s POV. The first part of the book, Klune gives us glances of what went down when the Bennett boys went after the man who took so much from them. But also Gordon’s memories of his childhood. I promise you it’s nothing you don’t want to read in those chapters!

Then we are in the now, where the singing of Mark getting louder and louder, and ignoring it is not an option. His raven screams for its mate.

Than…hunters…omegas…hurts…

I don’t want to spoil the book for you. But I can assure you that this is exactly what you were waiting for! This is the story that kept you anticipating.

Yes, I’m in book hangover. But that’s not new when it comes to TJ Klune is it? While Wolfsong reduced me to a crybaby, well Ravensong did it too, but in this book, the plot was more angsty…and no…this is not the end…

***The ARC was provided by Dreamspinner Press. My review is an honest opinion of the book ***

Review edited by : Laura McNellis

Review: “Blood And Eternity” by Shira Anthony

TITLE: Blood And Eternity
AUTHOR: Shira Anthony
SERIES: Blood
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
COVER ARTIST: Reese Dante
GENRE: Paranormal
E-BOOK: Yes
PAPERBACK: Yes
LENGTH: IN PAGES
RELEASE DATE: July 31, 2018
PRICE: $6.99 – e-book/ $14.99 – paperback

BLURB:

Sequel to Blood and Ghosts and the final installment in the Blood Trilogy
Vampire hunter Adrien Gilbert never dreamed he’d fall for his prey or that his love, Nicolas Lambert, would give him the gift of immortality. But when a hunter bent on destroying the truce between vampires and hunters throws the gauntlet at Adrien’s feet, Adrien must travel through time to save Nicolas, and with him, the entire vampire race.
The time has come to make a choice—one they will live with for eternity.
In this final installment in the Blood Trilogy, Adrien and Nicolas must face their greatest enemy in a deadly last confrontation. But to prevail, they’ll need to master the enemies within.
When Adrien awakens to a future he doesn’t recognize, he faces an impossible decision: live a perfect life with Nicolas in a shattered world, or risk everything to repair a broken past. But before he can challenge vampire hunter Verel Pelletier, he must master the demon who lives in his own mind—and learn to control his ability to travel through time. With Nicolas by his side, he prepares for a final battle against a powerful adversary who likes to play games with the past and future.
But the price of ensuring a future for their loved ones may be an eternity spent alone.


This is the third and final book in the Blood series. I was so excited about this book because I needed these guys to win. From book one there has been so much heartache, and the characters have faced so much adversity. The plot has remained fast-paced and extremely entertaining. The author has done an amazing job keeping me on my toes. I can never predict what’s going to happen next. She created this world where I finally start to get comfortable and then flips it upside down. Paranormal is never an easy genre to write especially when creating your own worlds, but Anthony does a flawless job. Throw in her incredible ability to add in some time travel, and I’m beyond impressed.

Adrien is an extremely complex character. Throughout the series, he has grown so much as a character. He started as a boy losing his mother and holding the entire vampire race responsible for falling in love with a vampire elder. In book three, Adrien has these incredible powers that he just needs to trust himself enough to reach their true potential. Time travel is a big part of this book. He has to go back to right the wrongs not only caused by him but also caused by his enemy vampire hunter Verel Pelletier. And of course that’s not enough for this fantastical author! She has to throw in Adrien’s inner demon as well. Every hunter has an inner demon that possesses the hunter’s true power. Adrien can either control it or kill it. Either way, he’s got a fight on his hands. He has to fight his inner demon, fight to save Nicolas and the entire vampire race, and of course he must fight the ever-powerful vampire hunter Pelletier. He’s got quite the full plate.
Nicolas is sort of a background character throughout these books. He’s not quite a main character, and he’s not quite a secondary character. He just kind of hangs in the shadows.

After book one, we really don’t see much of him the way we knew him in book one. He’s always changing and evolving as the hunters, including his love, constantly change up the storyline. As soon as we think this is it, this is where Nicolas comes out and kicks butt, he’s thrown to the sidelines. I always wanted more from him. He’s supposed to be this insanely powerful vampire, but he’s never really allowed to shine. Not my favorite main character. He definitely brought the heat when things got horizontal between him and Adrien, and I loved his loyalty and humble nature. I just wanted more of his badass vampire side as well. He was a little too submissive.

I highly recommend this series. There are not a lot of vampire romances in the MM genre so to find one this page-turning is obviously rare. I would not recommend reading these books as a standalone. They should really be read in order. Book one is very mind-numbing at times only because there is so much information being thrown out. Just don’t give up because it will all make sense as you make your way through the series. Book two is very fast-paced, and with it having time travel and flashbacks, you must pay attention or you’ll get lost in the pages.
Book three was incredible. Anthony did a fabulous job piecing everything together and I left the series extremely satisfied. The plot and characters are one of a kind, and I will definitely be adding this to my must reread list.

***The ARC was provided by Dreamspinner Press. My review is an honest opinion of the book ***

Review edited by : Laura McNellis