series

Wolf Under Fire (STAT: Special Threat Assessment Team #1)

Wolf Under Fire (STAT: Special Threat Assessment Team #1)

By: Paige Tyler

Blurb:

For the cases no one else can solve, they send in the Special Threat Assessment Team

Supernatural creatures are no longer keeping their existence secret from humans, causing panic around the globe. To investigate, monitor, and ― when necessary ― take down dangerous supernatural offenders, an international task force was established: The Special Threat Assessment Team.

STAT agent Jestina Ridley is in London with her team investigating a suspicious kidnapping. Over her radio, Jes hears her teammates being savagely attacked. She runs to help, but she’s too late. The only survivor, Jes calls for backup and gets former Navy SEAL and alpha werewolf Jake Huang and his new pack. Convinced that the creature who butchered her teammates was a werewolf, Jes doesn’t trust them. But if they’re going to uncover the facts and make it back home alive, she’ll need Jake’s help. And with everything on the line, Jes will have to accept Jake for who he is, or lose the partner she never expected to find.

Review:

Wolf Under Fire was a romantic action story. Since a woman wrote it, the romance was actually good. There were soulmates, instant attraction, and everyone was drawn to their significant others scents.

Jake was ex-military and an ex-cop. He’d just signed up to lead a team at the FBI that specialized in the supernatural. I got the distinct feeling I was missing out on parts of his history, so I believe he was talked about in another book, but it didn’t impact the story.

Jes was a seasoned agent for STAT and not the biggest fan of werewolves. When she meets Jake, there’s an instant attraction, but their first meeting isn’t the best. Things quickly escalate, though.

Most of this book was action. There were car chases, explosions, and lots of fighting. As I said, it was an action romance. This isn’t my usual genre, but I enjoyed it. I do wish there was more information about the supernatural, but Jake and Jes both seemed to be very ignorant about the world. I was also able to guess a couple of the twists pretty quickly. All in all, it was enjoyable, and I see myself reading more from Tyler.

3.5/5

The Boyfriend Project (The Boyfriend Project #1)

The Boyfriend Project

The Boyfriend Project (The Boyfriend Project #1)

By: Farrah Rochon

Blurb:

Samiah Brooks never thought she would be “that” girl. But a live tweet of a horrific date just revealed the painful truth: she’s been catfished by a three-timing jerk of a boyfriend. Suddenly Samiah-along with his two other “girlfriends,” London and Taylor-have gone viral online. Now the three new besties are making a pact to spend the next six months investing in themselves. No men, no dating, and no worrying about their relationship status . . .

For once Samiah is putting herself first, and that includes finally developing the app she’s always dreamed of creating. Which is the exact moment she meets the deliciously sexy, honey-eyed Daniel Collins at work. What are the chances? When it comes to love, there’s no such thing as a coincidence. But is Daniel really boyfriend material or is he maybe just a little too good to be true?

Review:

This is the second book I’ve read that involved going viral on Twitter, and I’m finding the whole idea interesting. It’s not anything I’ve ever thought about, but once I did, I could see why it would not be a good thing. Why it would cause someone a lot of stress. I’ve never wanted to become Twitter famous, and The Boyfriend Project didn’t have people going crazy, but the invasion of privacy seems awful.

Anyway, Samiah (really love her name) is a super-smart programmer. She’s worked her butt off to succeed in her career and let other things fall to the wayside. After being conned by someone clearly beneath her, she ends up making two new friends. The three women bond and push each other to resist trying to conform to society’s expectations. Their friendship was great. Even though it wasn’t the main focus of the book, it was still something I loved.

Daniel is a man that loves his country and is doing what he can to make it a better place. While I can appreciate that, it’s not the positive it used to be. However, I tried to set that aside. Daniel was the perfect modern man. He made his interest known without being pushy. Consent was important to him, and that went to everything, not just sex. Meaning he wasn’t going around touching people’s arms or offering hugs unless he asked permission first. That may seem like too much, but considering the book was set in a tech company, I thought it was an excellent addition. It certainly set him apart from other people in the industry, even though the company in the book was more progressive than most.

I thought that Rochon did a good job mentioning the issues faced by women, especially women of color, in tech. It’s an industry I’m familiar with, even though I hadn’t worked directly in it for some years. I appreciated that the issues weren’t glossed over or ignored.

Due to the nature of Daniel’s job, his and Samiah’s relationship seems doomed, but I liked how things were worked out. There weren’t big egos that had to be worked with, so that helped. They were both confident in their abilities while still struggling with other issues. The Boyfriend Project was a fun read that I really enjoyed.

4/5

The Wedding Date (The Wedding Date #1)

The Wedding Date

The Wedding Date (The Wedding Date #1)

By: Jasmine Guillory

Blurb:

Agreeing to go to a wedding with a guy she gets stuck with in an elevator is something Alexa Monroe wouldn’t normally do. But there’s something about Drew Nichols that’s too hard to resist.

On the eve of his ex’s wedding festivities, Drew is minus a plus one. Until a power outage strands him with the perfect candidate for a fake girlfriend…

After Alexa and Drew have more fun than they ever thought possible, Drew has to fly back to Los Angeles and his job as a pediatric surgeon, and Alexa heads home to Berkeley, where she’s the mayor’s chief of staff. Too bad they can’t stop thinking about the other…

They’re just two high-powered professionals on a collision course toward the long distance dating disaster of the century–or closing the gap between what they think they need and what they truly want…

Review:

Alexa doesn’t like to describe herself as a prude, and after reading this story, I wouldn’t either. A better term is risk-averse. She tends to overthink things. This seems to work pretty well for her at work, but not so much in romance. She also has body image issues that I related to hard.

Drew is a commitment-phobe. He had a relationship that got serious before he was ready and now ends every relationship after just a couple of months. He’s a pretty boy doctor that doesn’t have an issue finding bedmates that are fine with that setup. Then he needs to find a date for the wedding of the woman he felt was his fallback when he was ready to settle down.

It would have been sooooo easy to hate Drew. He’s a lot of things that I don’t like rolled up into one character, but the way he treated Alexa overcame all of that. I liked reading from his point of view because I got to see that he only thought about the positives of Alexa’s body. All of the fear she had over it never even occurred to him. I also enjoyed that because she viewed this as a fling, she didn’t let those fears overcome her, and by the time she felt like it was more they didn’t matter.

The conflict worked out perfectly, and I had no issue believing it. I also enjoyed how things worked out with Alexa’s sister (which is great because I ended up getting the 5th book in the series from the library before all the others). The side characters seemed interesting enough, but they were not the main focus and only had small parts to play. The one I’m interested in the most is Carlos, so I hope he has his own book.

Finding love with the person you’ve been trapped in an elevator with is a pretty enjoyable trope and not overly done. The Wedding Date was a great start to a series and set my expectations high.

4/5

Binti (Binti #1)

Binti

Binti (Binti #1)

By: Nnedi Okorafor

Blurb:

Her name is Binti, and she is the first of the Himba people ever to be offered a place at Oomza University, the finest institution of higher learning in the galaxy. But to accept the offer will mean giving up her place in her family to travel between the stars among strangers who do not share her ways or respect her customs.

Knowledge comes at a cost, one that Binti is willing to pay, but her journey will not be easy. The world she seeks to enter has long warred with the Meduse, an alien race that has become the stuff of nightmares. Oomza University has wronged the Meduse, and Binti’s stellar travel will bring her within their deadly reach.

If Binti hopes to survive the legacy of a war not of her making, she will need both the gifts of her people and the wisdom enshrined within the University, itself — but first she has to make it there, alive.

Review:

It’s been a while since I’ve read a sci-fi book. I’m pleased with my choice. Binti was a short story, but it was positive sci-fi. The world wasn’t perfect, but there was still hope. What’s even better, it ended on a positive note. I needed that right now.

Binti was the best in her village. She was smart and curious and brave. She ended up leaving to attend the most prestigious university in her universe. Things didn’t go as planned, but she was able to handle everything that was thrown at her.

The world that was created was interesting. I loved all the details that were included. I hope that in the next book, we see more of Binti’s family. The history of her village was fascinating.

This is the first book in a trilogy. None of the books seem to be very long, but if they continue in this vein, I’ll be very happy.

4/5

Alien in the House

Alien in the House

Alien in the House (Katherine “Kitty” Katt #7) By: Gini Koch

Plot:

Jeff and Kitty Katt-Martini have learned the ins and outs of Washington politics, not to mention how to prevail in intergalactic war and foil dangerous plots. But, in the aftermath of Operation Destruction, the Gower girls’ powers are burned out, the entire A-C population has been “outed” as the aliens living on Earth that they are, and, worst of all, ACE is nowhere to be found.

Then murder and mayhem are served up at an important dinner party at the American Centaurion Embassy, and when the dust settles Alpha Team and the Diplomatic Corps have more problems than just a dead Congressman.

Is there a single criminal mastermind—or multiple enemies—behind all the conspiracies that want Kitty dead and the A-Cs gone or co-opted to become the War Division?

The return of the best assassins in the business, the reappearance of two individuals long-presumed dead, Agent Malcolm Buchanan felled by something no one can identify or cure, and new technology that can block even the most powerful empath on Earth … all of this means the game’s officially afoot.

Then Vance Beaumont comes to Kitty with a wild theory that someone is systematically killing off the House of Representatives…

It’s up to Kitty and the rest of the gang to find out what’s really going on and why. But will they be able to stop the killer or killers before the rest of the U.S. House of Representatives become casualties? And will the replacement Representative for New Mexico’s 2nd District, who happens to be Jeff Martini, be the next to die?

Review:

First, I just want to say that I love the titles and the covers for these books. They’re always so perfect.

On to the review, I started this book two years ago, maybe? I got to 65% and for some reason stopped reading. I’m honestly not sure why, the book is fine, well within expectations of the series, so who knows. Jumping back in I did have a bit of confusion, the cast of characters is massive at this point, but they’re all so memorable that it didn’t take too long to remember what was going on.

What I love about this series is that Kitty is going to figure out what’s going on, no matter what. It is the ultimate wish fulfillment self-insert story. It’s like old sci-fi pulp fiction. Only instead of a dude getting to bang all the chicks and solve all the problems we’ve got a woman that gets to solve all the problems, boss everyone around, and bang her hot husband while all of her friends end up pairing up with hot smart people. It’s perfect.

There’s nothing too deep about this series, but it is complicated. There’s a mass of characters that almost always make an appearance and more are added each book. There’s multiple worlds, though, the this book only takes place on Earth. There are several government agencies and conspiracies and just a whole hell of a lot going on.

Like I said, though, Kitty and her crew will always figure it out in time and the core group of people will survive. It’s comforting junk food that I’m glad I returned too.

3.5/5