Genre: Angels and Demons, Ghosts, Spirits, Other Paranormal, Teen Fiction
Length: Novella (224 pages)
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (June 2, 2016)
Heat Level: Low – Moderate
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥ 4 Hearts
Blurb: Everett Hallman might not be the world’s most powerful witch, but he does his part by helping wayward souls find their way to the beyond. Then a feeling Everett can’t explain lures him away from the magical woods near his house, to a local martial arts school. There, he is intrigued when he uncovers remains left by supernatural beings of enormous power, and he cannot resist looking into the mystery.
Everett learns he is a Bridge Master: a witch capable of passing into different spirit realms, but his revelation comes with a new set of problems. First, the powerful witch instructing him disappears, and then he notices something strange about his attractive new friend from the martial arts studio. Worst of all, Everett’s reserves of spell-casting energy continue to deplete. Only one thing is certain—Everett cannot turn his back on this puzzle until he gets some answers.
Review: Everett is a witch and something more that he learns about. He’s also a bridge master able to create a bridge between two worlds. He has a crush on Bryce from the dojo. When the two boys grow closer Everett suspects that Bryce is more than human. Going against his grandfather’s wishes Everett sets out to discover the truth about Bryce.
Along the way he puts himself in dangerous situations. I really liked Everett’s determination to find the truth about everything. Though I felt he should have used caution during certain circumstances throughout the story.
It was a really good story with magic, romance, supernatural creatures, mystery and suspense. I could not stop reading one I started as I wanted answers as well. Well written and interesting.
Blurb: Samael is a centuries old archangel. Falsely accused of misusing his powers, he was banished to earth with no clothes, no money, nothing except a dagger to his name.
Brandon was betrayed by his boyfriend and is running from thugs who are going to kill him, if he doesn’t pay them twenty thousand dollars. He has no way to get that kind of money, and doesn’t know what to do.
When Samael crashes to earth, nearly landing in Brandon’s lap, things get complicated fast, flipping Brandon’s life into a chaos that he has never known. Danger and intrigue lurk around every corner, and nothing is what it seems.
Review: This was absolute perfection. It had a serious tone with a bit of humor added in. It kept my attention right from the start and my attention never left the story. It had a wonderful story line and plot, not to mention some pretty hot characters.
Samael is an archangel banished to heaven only to land pretty much into Brandon’s lap. Samael is an alpha male and a hero to all. He is loyal and honest with just a bit of anger in him. He is so easy to love with all his goodness and heart of gold. Brandon has the worst luck with boyfriends, and this time has ended him up in danger. A danger that has some pretty good shock factors. He is just as cute as can be and you want to help him right off the bat. When these two come together…major hotness.
There is a twist in this story that will amaze you. If you didn’t know you were reading a fantasy, you would actually think this was happening. It is such a believable story. This story will keep you on the edge of your seat, the only problem I had with it, was that it wasn’t longer. I want to know what happens further down the line. So I hope that Taylor will write a second book because there is many ways to turn this into a series.
I loved it and will look forward to reading it again.
Blurb: As his birthday approaches, Matthew Westlake fears more than just growing a year older. He fears never seeing another year at all. Each birthday brings a close call with death, leaving holes in his memory, recurring nightmares, and one more glimpse of his guardian angel. This birthday Matt must stand against ancient evils that have hounded him since birth, because he is a Gifted One—a seventh son of a seventh son.
Within Matt rests the unlocked potential of a force for good, but it also makes him a target. Being the Gifted One and dodging demonic attacks aren’t Matt’s only problems, though. He’s fallen in love with his protector, the Archangel Gabriel, and Heaven will condemn that love to save Matt’s soul. But Heaven doesn’t count on Gabriel loving Matt in return, defying divine law and placing them in danger from demons and angels alike.
Review: Matthew has had many tragedies throughout his life, and each year his birthday brings danger. But, his guardian angel, Gabriel, is always there in the background keeping him safe. But, this year is different, as the forces of evil are determined to put an end to the Gifted One and Gabriel crosses a line never meant to be crossed. Matt and Gabriel jeopardize God’s Grand Design by falling in love, defying God’s laws and now a sacrifice must be made before it is too late.
This is a great good vs. evil, heavenly powers story. Matthew is the Gifted One and since the night of his birth has been hunted by evil. Gabriel is the Archangel charged with keeping him safe, but Gabriel has grown to love the mortal under his protection and he breaks the rules when he shows himself to Matt. Matt is confused about his instant connection to the mysterious Gabriel. But, he tries to put it to the side to make a go of it with Craig, a man who has great potential in the boyfriend stakes. Evil still haunts Matt and monsters from his past are poised to strike and the contact with Gabriel pushes their feelings to the surface. But acting on their love could prove too dangerous with the powers of heaven disapproving.
I enjoyed most of this book, but I have to admit to disliking parts of it, especially when it came to Matt’s inability to basically stand up for himself against his friends and how understanding he had to be all the time, it wasn’t natural. The storyline was great and Gabriel and Matt were an interesting couple. I liked the way that the past was told in full for the pivotal moments and the way that evil twisted humans to do its bidding. The way the story flows is brilliant and it has emotional twists and turns, with some heavenly aspects and stories lending to the story. There’s lots of danger with rescues, some angst, arguing, forgiveness and love, there are some horrifying moments but also some moments of great sacrifice and devotion.
I will recommend this to those who love Angels and evil, some hot sex, Archangels giving it all up for love, danger, and a great ending.
Blurb: At once an exploration of grief and faith, Into This River I Drown is one man’s journey into the secrets of his father and discovering the strength to believe in the impossible.
Five years ago, Benji Green lost his beloved father, Big Eddie, who drowned when his truck crashed into a river. All called it an accident, but Benji thought it more. However, even years later, he is buried deep in his grief, throwing himself into taking over Big Eddie’s convenience store in the small town of Roseland, Oregon. Surrounded by his mother and three aunts, he lives day by day, struggling to keep his head above water.
But Roseland is no ordinary place.
With ever-increasing dreams of his father’s death and waking visions of feathers on the surface of a river, Benji’s definition of reality is starting to bend. He thinks himself haunted, but whether by ghosts or memories, he can no longer tell. It’s not until the impossible happens and a man falls from the sky and leaves the burning imprint of wings on the ground that he begins to understand that the world around him is more mysterious than he could have possibly imagined. It’s also more dangerous, as forces beyond anyone’s control are descending on Roseland, revealing long hidden truths about friends, family, and the man named Calliel who Benji is finding he can no longer live without.
Into this book I drowned—and I wasn’t so keen on being rescued. I quite loved where I was, thank you very much.
But—sigh—it’s over . . . I guess it’s time for me to do some grieving of my own, because boy will I miss these characters.
It’s hard to write a review for this without giving away too much. There are so many amazing twists and turns that it just has to be read. But, to give you a feel of the story, here are my dedications to each main character:
ABE – Such a warm, wonderful friend. I loved the way you stood next to Benji throughout everything, loved the way you talked about how much you loved and missed your wife, loved the fond memories you had of the life you had Before, and loved the way you forged a life After Estelle. You were such a good best friend to Benji, helping him as he goes through the same grief.
NINA (The most important of The Trio)– I thought you were God. I thought it was you both testing and reassuring everyone in this book. Why did I think that? Because you were the light and the foresight when nobody else seemed able to see anymore.
THE BAD GUYS – I rather wanted to kill you myself, for hurting all the people in all the ways you did. You were so bad and it made me root harder for our Benji and Cal.
THE ANGELS – You surprised me. I can’t say I expected the book to get as paranormal as it did in the end. I have mixed feelings about all your involvement. Sometimes I thought you added the story—particularly Michael, in the beginning—but I wasn’t so sure the rest of you belonged in this story. That being said, I am curious about a couple of you and your stories.
ROSELAND – Because you were one of the most interesting. All the individuals of your town were unique and charming, but it was how they worked together as a whole that was really inspiring. Roseland, you are such a richly crafted town, so vividly described, I could hear your heartbeat throughout the novel. Wonderful.
Blue, Cal, Calliel – For a while, all I could see was blue and it was beautiful and sad and magical and so lonely. The way you loved all the townspeople in Roseland was so endearing, and, well, you had my heart from the start. It’s so hard to say everything I want to about you without giving too much away, but this story would be lost without Blue.
BENJI – You broke my heart. I felt what you felt and there was no way for me to make it better for you except by reading to the end. I wanted so much to say sorry.
BIG EDDIE – The best Dad in the world.
It’s not that there aren’t enough words to describe you. There aren’t any.
This story is emotional, and heavy, and magical all at once. This is a story of loss and love and trying desperately not to drown in the river that is grief. I know this story won’t be for everyone, but it touched a nerve with me. Part slice-of-live, part mystery, part paranormal, part romance, part blue—every word was worth it.