Sunday, October 22, 2017

Week in Review: 10/15-10/21

Books Received for Review

Nothing this week...

Books I've Read

Ever the Brave by Erin Summerill
Getting Wilde by Jenn Stark
Wilde Card by Jenn Stark
Born to Be Wilde by Jenn Stark
Wicked and Wilde by Jenn Stark
Aces Wilde by Jenn Stark

Reviews Posted

The Last Namsara by Kristin Cavallari
Haunted Blade by JC Daniels


* New Releases for the week. Was there anything you were looking forward to reading?

* Monday- Interview + Giveaway for Dragon’s First Rule by Silver Milan

* Thursday- Promo + Giveaway for Dreaming of a White Wolf Christmas by Terry Spear

* Friday- The Writers Awards Top Book Blogs of 2017- UFI made #28!


* Did you know you can follow UFI on these other sites?

You can also add me (as in Stacy) to your friends on these sites if you're on them.

 * I love comments so if you see something you like (or not) please comment away and let me know.

Friday, October 20, 2017

The Writers Awards Top Book Blogs of 2017- UFI made #28!

The Book Blogger Awards 2017

It was so great to get an email from The Writer Awards letting me know that out of 1000+ blogs reviewed, Urban Fantasy Investigations made #28!

If it weren't for my fabulous readers I wouldn't be successful, so I share this win with you!

Here is what The Writers Awards had to say about why they chose UFI as a top book blog of 2017.

Review: Haunted Blade by JC Daniels

Haunted Blade
Release Date: September 30, 2017
Publisher: Self-Published
Colbana Files Book #6
ISBN13:  9781495639050
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Review Copy Source: NetGalley

Haunted, Hunted…and harassed.

Never let it be said that Kit Colbana had ever been given the easy road. Or even the semi-paved road. Only weeks after dealing with the mysterious—and murderous—being called Puck, she’s got another killer on her hands. Perhaps even two.

Some of the bodies turning up bring up haunting memories of a past she longs to forget, but as always, that past is chasing her at her heels, like a hated shadow.

As the body count racks up, there’s an imbalance of power, particularly among the vampire population, and Kit must yet again deal with ugly memories as one of the monsters who tried to break her is set free to deal with the imbalance of power. Yet while a power struggle rages in East Orlando, there’s another, more subtle battle taking place and Kit feels like the center of it all.

Arrogant? Maybe. But the dead bodies don’t bear the mark of her grandmother’s pet killer by sheer coincidence…and she doubts her nemesis being released is either.

Kit is a very complex character with a very tangled past—and sometimes present—that never ceases to amaze me even after 6 books. I haven't always loved each and every book, but I always enjoyed them and HAUNTED was one of the better ones.

There was a lot happening in HAUNTED BLADE. There was plenty of action, plenty of overall story development and plenty of twists. The suspense was pretty consistent from front to back and I can't even begin to tell you how many feelings—good and bad—each scene invoked.  I wish the pace would have been a little smoother and there were a few points in HAUNTED BLADE where the scenes were a little choppy, but overall I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.

As for the ending of HAUNTED BLADE all I have to say is what just happened? Is it really ending there? How long do I have to wait to find out what will happen next? Ahhhhh I definitely need more.

I gave it 4/5 stars

* This book was provided free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Promo + Giveaway: Dreaming of a White Wolf Christmas by Terry Spear

Dreaming of a White Wolf Christmas
White Wolf #1
In the first installment of Terry Spear's bold, sexy White Wolf series, a romance writer's life is changed forever when a white puppy bites her and turns her into an Arctic wolf shifter.

May all your Christmas wolves be bright...
Romance writer Candice Mayfair never missed a deadline in her life--until the playful bite of a werewolf puppy accidentally turns her into an Arctic wolf shifter. Talk about a life-changing event! Candice is at the end of her rope with the unpredictable shifting, a strong desire to howl, and the need to vacuum constantly to keep the shedding fur under control.

Enter werewolf private investigator Owen Nottingham. Owen has a new mission: convince the pretty she-wolf she needs to join his pack in time for Christmas...and be his mate. It's the only way he can think of to keep her safe...


Candice had been writing for two days straight, working on her publisher’s book deadline, when she wrote the ending, smiled, and set the book aside. She would start proofing it tomorrow after she’d given her brain a break. Now she’d do what she always did when she finished a book or reached a good stopping point in one. Clean house. Check her backlog of emails. Pick up some more groceries. And take a run on the wolf side.

She finished vacuuming and dusting, swearing every window must let in all the outdoors, and then started a batch of gingerbread cookie cutouts to celebrate the Christmas holiday season and finishing another book. While they were baking, she finally settled down to check her emails. Fan mail always came first, and one from her website got her attention right off. She opened it and read:

Hello, I’m Owen Nottingham, private investigator for White River Investigations, White River Falls, Minnesota. My client, Strom Hart, hired me to locate you. Your parents, John and Cynthia Hart, left you an inheritance, and you need to see the lawyer about it so you can claim it. I need to verify that
you are the right woman first. Is there any way we could meet and get this taken care of so you can collect your inheritance? Strom Hart will be the one to receive it by the end of the month otherwise. His assistant, Jim Winchester, said Mr. Hart is your uncle.

Candice reread the message, not believing her eyes, tears filling them. She quickly looked at the date of the message. Two days ago! She knew she shouldn’t have neglected her emails, but when she was into a story, she couldn’t break away.

She ground her teeth, raised her fingers to respond, and heard a knocking at her door. No one came here. Never. Ever. Not even salesmen.

She glanced at her phases-of-the moon calendar. The waxing gibbous was just beginning. She should be fine. Just to be on the safe side, in case the person at the door was trouble, she pulled a can of mace from her desk drawer and headed for the door. She peered through the peephole. Waiting at the door was a handsome black-haired man with rugged features and intense blue eyes. He was dressed in a black suit, a red shirt, and a dark-purple tie covered in red, purple, and gold Christmas balls. She raised her brows.

“I’m Owen Nottingham,” he said to the door, holding up his PI license and driver’s license. He couldn’t know that she was watching him, so he must have hoped she was there, observing him. “I tried getting ahold of you through the contact form on your website about your inheritance. Your contact form might not be working, so I had to locate you in person.”
So this was the man who had sent the message. Was he for real? He had to be. He wouldn’t have come all this way to see her if he wasn’t. But how had he found her?

Candice opened the door, the bells jingling on her Christmas wreath, and the man glanced down at the can of mace in her hand. He smiled, his gaze holding hers with such intensity that it was as though he could see clear through to her soul. “Really, just a PI doing my job.”

A chilly breeze carried his scent to her. Wolf scent. All at once, she felt so light-headed that she grabbed the door to keep herself upright and dropped the can of mace on the tile floor. It clattered, but she couldn’t have reached for it if her life depended on it.

Oh. My. God.

This couldn’t be real. He couldn’t be real. No wonder he’d been talking to the door. He must have heard her footfalls as she’d approached.

He took a deep breath at the same time, and when he smelled her scent, his eyes widened in surprise. His hand shot out to grab her arm and steady her. For a minute, she tried to control her breathing and her heart rate, neither of which she could steady. She felt like she was going to pass out.

“Hell, you’re the wolf I saw across the White River, aren’t you?”

Her jaw dropped, and her knees buckled. He swept her up in his arms and she wanted to object, but he slammed the door behind him with his hip and carried her into the house. He was the wolf she’d seen across the river that day on the camping trip in Minnesota two years ago, sipping from the water? She still remembered it like it was yesterday. Him looking up and seeing her staring at him while she’d believed she was hallucinating.
Until the next night, and then she knew she hadn’t been dreaming at all.

White Wolf Series:
Dreaming of a White Wolf Christmas (Book 1)
Flight of the White Wolf (Book 2)


USA Today bestselling author Terry Spear has written over sixty paranormal and medieval Highland romances. In 2008, Heart of the Wolf was named a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry also creates award-winning teddy bears that have found homes all over the world. She lives in Spring, Texas with two Havanese puppies.

Find Terry and her books
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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Review: The Last Namsara by Kristen Ciccarelli

The Last Namsara
Release Date: October 3, 2017
Publisher: HarperTeen
Iskari Book #1
ISBN:  0062567985
ISBN13: 9780062567987
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Review Copy Source: Edelweiss

In the beginning, there was the Namsara: the child of sky and spirit, who carried love and laughter wherever he went. But where there is light, there must be dark—and so there was also the Iskari. The child of blood and moonlight. The destroyer. The death bringer.

These are the legends that Asha, daughter of the king of Firgaard, has grown up hearing in hushed whispers, drawn to the forbidden figures of the past. But it isn’t until she becomes the fiercest, most feared dragon slayer in the land that she takes on the role of the next Iskari—a lonely destiny that leaves her feeling more like a weapon than a girl.

Asha conquers each dragon and brings its head to the king, but no kill can free her from the shackles that await at home: her betrothal to the cruel commandant, a man who holds the truth about her nature in his palm. When she’s offered the chance to gain her freedom in exchange for the life of the most powerful dragon in Firgaard, she finds that there may be more truth to the ancient stories than she ever could have expected. With the help of a secret friend—a slave boy from her betrothed’s household—Asha must shed the layers of her Iskari bondage and open her heart to love, light, and a truth that has been kept from her.

Even months after reading THE LAST NAMSARA I am still on the fence with my rating.

The world building in THE LAST NAMSARA was fantastic. Ciccarelli set up every scene so that I had no problem picturing it in my mind. I found the storyline to be both imaginative and original and I really loved how the author incorporated the dragons into everything.

So why might I be on the fence with how I felt? Well I loved the plot and the world, but the characters didn't really blow me away. I liked Asha. She had some great growth throughout the book, but I didn't love her. I liked the supporting characters, but again, didn't love them. The relationship between Asha and Torwin didn't really draw me in and I wish that we got to see more of Safire's story.

Even though my overall feelings about book one in the Iskari series are stuck in the middle, I had zero issues staying interested in THE LAST NAMSARA and will keep my eyes out . THE CAGED QUEEN is set to come out in the Fall of 2018 and I see myself giving it a shot.

I gave it 3.5/5 stars

* This book was provided free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Interview + Giveaway: Dragon’s First Rule by Silver Milan

UFI welcomes Author Silver Milan. Thanks for Joining us!!

What can you tell my readers about yourself that they might not know from looking on your bio or reading in another interview?

I’m a big geek. And I mean really big. I geek out on Star Wars and super heroine movies, and I wish I was Wonder Woman saving the world, or Rey wielding a blue light saber to protect the Jedi. I also want to be a lion shifter. So I guess my dream movie would be about a lion shifter with Jedi powers saving the world. Wait a second, that sounds a lot like my latest books ;)

What do you enjoy doing on your down time?

Lots of things. I’m a big fitness fan, so I’ll head to the gym, or jog or bike if the weather is good. Or I’ll pick up a good romance if it’s a rainy day. I’m also a bit of a foodie, and since I never was that great of a cook (unless you count Mac n’ Cheese, which I can make really well!!!), I like to support local mom and pop restaurants. Especially on the Italian side. Mmmm, pasta.

What is your Favorite part of writing?

The freedom to be whoever I want. In all my books, I’m the heroine, living the life of my dreams. I’m in complete control of my destiny, able to do things, see things I could never do in real life. So I guess, setting my imagination free, that’s my favorite part of writing.

Do you have any certain routines you must follow as you write?

I try to write first thing after eating breakfast. I don’t like to check email or other distractions until the end of my writing day. I’ll sip on water throughout the writing session (or tea if it’s cold), and I’ll usually take a break every three hours to have a small meal.

What are some of your Favorite books or Authors in the Urban Fantasy/ Paranormal Genres?

Guild Hunter by Nalini Singh. Anything by T.S. Joyce, Terry Bolryder, and Zoe Chant.

How would you pitch Dragon’s First Rule to someone who has not heard of it before?

It’s a story about Ariel, a broken lion shifter, and a world-weary dragon shifter, Jett, who just so happens to be king of the known world. When Ariel catches the eye of this dangerously attractive king, the two are swept up in a maelstrom of magic and forbidden passion.

Can you tell us a little bit about the world that Dragon’s First Rule is set in?

Sure. It’s a world secretly ruled by seven kings and queens, known as the Council of Seven. Three are dragon. Three vampire. And one witch.

The heroine’s love interest, Jett, is a member of the Council of Seven: he’s the king of North America. He’s also a dragon shifter.

In ancient times, dragon shifters were spread across the world. Many lived in tribes, but many more lived alone in private dens. Jett and his father worked to unite those living in North America under one rule, and his father became the first of the seven secret kings. Together he and Jett built Midnight, a massive subterranean den, and invited the dragons to leave their tribes and solitary dens to live there under the king’s protection.

Jett remained in the countryside, working to gather the tribes into larger dens for their own protection, and securing the allegiance of the different shifter crews. He also acted as the emissary to the other seven kings and queens who arose across the world.

After the Great Vampire War, his father abdicated the throne to Jett, leaving it up to him to keep the dragons of North America united, and the shifters and vampires on the continent under control.

Do you have a favorite scene in Dragon’s First Rule?

Probably when Ariel sees Jett in his shifter form for the first time. She’s just blown away by his sheer size, sheer beauty, and the sheer power of his dragon.

Which one character out of all your books was your favorite to write about? What about the hardest to write about?

I think the good and noble characters are definitely my favorite to write about, while characters that are evil or nasty in nature are always the hardest to write about. It’s not so much that I see myself as good and noble (okay fine, I do!) but it’s that it’s hard to make a nasty character seem believable. They have to believe that they’re not evil, that they’re thinking is perfectly correct, and it can be hard to get that across on the page when you as a writer don’t believe in what they’re doing at all.

What Other Projects can we look forward to reading from you?

I’m working on book 3 to the Dragons of Midnight series. It should be out in a few weeks. I originally intended to launch Dragon’s First Rule with its two sequels all at the same time, but when summer came I decided to take an enforced month off, because otherwise I’d blink and the warm weather would be gone! I live in a place with extremely cold winters, and sometimes it has felt like I’ve missed summer because I worked through it. I usually console myself with the fact that at least I’m doing what I love: writing books. But even writers need a break once in a while! :)

Silver Milan is a USA TODAY BESTSELLING author of paranormal romance and urban fantasy novels. Publishing under different pen names since 2013, Silver has sold more than 300,000 books.

Find Silver and her books

Dragon's First Rule
Dragons of Midnight #1
When newly turned lion shifter Ariel stumbles into the realm of the dragon shifters, she catches the eye of the dangerously attractive dragon king, Jett, and the pair is swept up in a maelstrom of magic and forbidden passion.

Ariel, a newly turned lion shifter, stumbles into the subterranean City of Midnight, home of the dragon shifters. Alone and vulnerable, she catches the eye of the dangerously attractive dragon king. Jett. He charms her and promises help, but can she trust him? After all, he is the King of the Dragons. Why would such a powerful man come to the aid of a common girl?

When Jett realizes Ariel has no one, he vows to protect her, as the girl has been turned against her will in dragon territory. He plans not only to shield her, but to hunt down the very outlaw who hurt her.

But Jett soon finds himself growing attached to his quirky yet beautiful lion shifter. He begins a dangerous game with her, skirting the razor's edge of passion. He must take care because if he surrenders to his desire, he will forfeit not only his throne, but perhaps both of their lives.

Note: This book contains explicit love scenes and is intended for mature readers who like their paranormal romance on the steamier side. Inside you'll find sexy dragons, strong women, and kick-ass magic.

Ariel stared into the darkness. She could see a surprisingly good distance inside, thanks to her enhanced vision. Nothing stood out to her, and the terminus of the passage was lost to the murk. The darkness seemed welcoming, somehow.
It seemed safe to turn her back on the cave, and she did so, gazing out from the precipice to survey the valley in front of her. Ordinarily, she would have thought the wide, tree-filled expanse so beautiful. She loved nature and hiking. It was one of the reasons she had come out here in the first place.  
But she felt nothing now, only emptiness. She wondered if she would ever be able to appreciate such beauty again, given what she had become.
She glanced at the cave once more. Again, she felt drawn to it, but she shook her head.
Not going inside.
Though she was incredibly upset, she didn't have a death wish. There might be a bear or something sleeping inside. Or maybe a dragon, like that stupid sign had said. Wouldn't surprise her anymore, not in the least: she was being hunted by lions who could become humans, after all. And she was one of those lions.
For now, all she wanted was to get away from those hunters. She would stay here for a few hours, long enough to be sure the animals had gone away. And then she would climb back down and get the hell out of here.
And what then? Well, she figured she would have to live out the rest of her days in the woods. It would be a solitary life, away from the technology that drove modern society. She would have to give up all her friends and family.
Maybe she could get a sat-phone or something, so she could still talk to her family occasionally. But she couldn't return, at least not until she could get the beast inside of her under control. That was something she doubted would ever be possible. Then again, moments ago she had exerted her will on the lioness and prevented her from ripping out of her skin. That was something, at least. A reason to hope.
She sat down on the precipice and settled in for a long wait. She decided she would stay here until nightfall. That would be the best time to retreat, since her beast operated best in the dark.
But so do the other lions, she reminded herself.
Maybe that wasn't such a good idea. Well, she'd sit here for a while, and make up her mind on what she wanted to do.
Maybe a minute passed before she heard a voice behind her. "Well hello."
Ariel spun in fright; when she saw the man standing at the cave mouth, she momentarily forgot all fear, forgot where she was and how she got there, and instead simply stared, spellbound.
Standing in front of the cave entrance towered the most beautiful man she had ever seen. He had to be at least six and a half feet tall. He was too gorgeous to be a model. Too breathtaking to be a movie star. She got butterflies in her stomach just looking at him. Where to begin? His hair… oh yes, his hair. It was as if someone had taken several bars of gold and melted them down to form the bouncy curls that fell around that spectacular face. His eyes were a fiery gold like his hair, almost unnaturally so. They were almond-shaped and beguiling, shining with intelligence.
His broad, bold nose jutted aristocratically from his face, perfect in every way. The plump lips of his chiseled, sensuous mouth had such gorgeous curves—if any lips were created for kissing, it was those. He had a strong, aristocratic jaw that matched his nose, and blemish-free, smooth bronze skin.
His thickly corded neck disappeared into the collar of a black and gold dress shirt, whose sleeves were rolled back to the elbows, revealing his muscular forearms. Black and gold tribal dragons were tattooed from wrists to elbows on each arm. The shirt did little to conceal the outline of his wide, powerful shoulders, and the hard muscles of his pecs that pressed out from beneath the fabric. She could make out the lines of a six-pack.
A designer belt cinched his lean waist, and below that he wore dark-washed, fitted jeans. Her eyes lingered on his groin, where—
Ariel blinked as she realized the brazenness of what she was doing, and the spell broke. She quickly lifted her eyes back to his face.
The beautiful man's lips were upturned in amusement.
She realized she was stark naked and quickly covered her breasts with one arm, twisting her torso away and covering her bum with her other hand. She kept her gaze on him, staring at him over one shoulder.
"What are you looking at?" she said.
"I'm looking at you," he replied defiantly. She hadn't noticed it when he spoke before, but even his voice was sexy as hell.
As she gazed at his haughty expression, the fear returned. Not of him, but for him.  
"Are you one of them?" she said.
"One of who?" the man said, still smiling.
"You're obviously not a backpacker or camper," Ariel said. "You don't find many people who dress like European fashionistas in the wilderness of the Midwest."
"No, you don't," the man said hypnotically.
Then again, if he was one of the lion-men who pursued her, he would have been butt-naked, like her.
"Look, it's been a rough few days," she said. "I'm not in the mood for games."
"You seem in surprisingly good spirits to me," the man said.
She smiled fleetingly. "Call it a defense mechanism. Listen, if you're not one of them, then you're putting yourself at risk. I'm not someone you want to know. I have to get myself as far away from civilization as I can. Those lions did… something… to me. I could change at a moment's notice. You could die."
"Change?" he said.
She heard the distant roar of a lion echo from the valley below.
That triggered the beast, and the lioness in her clawed to get out. Clawed clawed clawed.
"I—" she said. But the words came out a growl. "Run," she managed to finish.

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