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I love my Kristen Ashley! Especially in the form of a chaos short story. “Every year” is specially sweet and heartwarming, a great starter for the holiday season. It’s about family, in particular how the Tate family welcomes the Cage brothers into their own.
4.5 stars, but let me be honest, Kristen Ashley does not disappoint and delivers. This story about hard edged biker Hop and soft framed Lanie is incredibly sweet.
It’s all about Hop’s tender core breaking through Lanie’s well justified defenses, and it’s so heartwarming I almost forgot about crazy Elvira and the Chaos boy’s caveman antics not appearing through most of the book.
Did I say Hop had a tender core? Yeap, not lying! I really enjoyed how Lanie worked her way into tough badass rocker/biker swoon wordy Hopper’s heart which in turn enabled him to show this side of him and give her so much sweet.
I think I’ve mentioned before how I like Kristen Ashley writing about older couples, who’ve made mistakes in their youth but now have a better grip on their lives.
You didn’t avoid having something beautiful because you were terrified of losing it. You fought to keep it. And when you got it, you kept hold.
I had some issues with the time line. I feel the need to write one out for the entire Dream Man/Rock Chick/Chaos books or ask KA if she has one on her wall so she can share it with us. But I loved the book fitting into the overall Chaos arc and ending at the same point as Own the Wind. Yes! Loved the epilogue.
I’m really looking forward to the next one!
I read this book and really liked it. Then I re-read it and “took more time savoring my most favorite parts. Since all of the parts were savor-worthy, this took a while.”
I was going to lead my review with a description of beautiful, sexy, badass mini-Tack version of Park “Shy” Cage. But before I was able to finish the thought I know he wouldn’t like to be described as mini anything. He is a man who “Never dreamed a dream. Still, he knew, without a doubt since he was holding one in his arms, dreams were real.”
I liked that he was open, honest and straight forward. He was also patient, kind, sweet and even romantic in his very own way.
I also liked Tabitha’s character. I enjoyed her journey through her self-discovery, I liked that part of this trek was helped along by Shy and I really loved the woman she became. Because at the end of it, she started a new ride with a man who insisted having with her an eternity of unity, balance and happiness.
It has everything from a Disney movie beginning…
It has a strong female lead, a sexy hot prince with an alternate world equally good and hot double, to an evil she-god with flare for the evil and dramatic.
This third installment of the Fantasyland series had everything and yet it lacked something. May be it’s because I’m used to Kristen Ashley giving us so much, that in this book, I missed having the interactions and bonds with supporting characters.
May be it’s because I’m so used to Kristen Ashley giving us lengthy stories. I think Kristen has a borg keyboard implant that sends her brain a message along the lines of “you will write long and great books, resistance is futile” that I felt Fantastical, as Fantastic as it was, it was on the short side.
Perhaps it’s because I didn’t like Tor for the better part of the book. He was a bit of an asshole upfront at first and then pretending to believe Cora the Great. I understand that there was not a good relationship with Cora the Horrible, in fact it was awful. And he didn’t know or believe Cora the Bomb because what she explained was out of his world, but I agree with her and her damaged heart because.
“… you can’t tell me that she’s capable of carrying off that kind of deception for that long. When I arrived, everything about her had changed, I hope. Everything. Even the way she slept. And you cannot tell me that you covered my body with yours… and didn’t know the bloody difference.”
Even so, the story is great. There’s sweet along with swoon and a happily ever after. Did I forget to mention a cool appearance from the previous books’ characters?
”You were the only thing I had but you were the only thing I needed.”
The road from dark and frightening, gritty and savage to honey sweet happiness seemed totally impossible. I was having a lot of trouble reading this book because in all honesty, at times my lungs constricted, my heart seized and my stomach turned. But a) this is a Kristen Ashley book, so I knew it would take a turn for the better and b) my friend told me “open yourself up a little, not everything has to be the same, hearts and flowers, etc. When a story is well written it’s worth enduring some torture before getting to the very VERY sweet.” So I did that and I got to the incredibly golden honey sweet part and by the end I was holding back joy filled tears.
I usually talk more about the hero than the heroine. I’m a girl who loves strong, sexy, alpha males. Not that Lanh isn’t one, because he is, but in this case I have to say, Circe was wow! I may or may not have a girl crush on her. She’s smart, sweet, brave, strong, she leads with her heart, she is everything Lanh needed and never thought wanted.
“I could not dream a better you… a better wife, a better queen. No t even in a dream could I create better than you.”
And Lanh, even though “he was a savage, no doubt about it,” he’s also an astute, roasted marshmallow. I actually said that! He’s charred and coarse on the outside but inside, yummy gooey sweetness. Of all his considerable and long list of attributes, his cunning and thoughtfulness are my favorite because through these, his barbaric and primitive culture didn’t hinder him from being tender and soft and when face with the challenge of winning Circe’s heart.
“my Lanh won that battle… He is my king, he is my warrior, he is my husband and I am proud to say above all… he is mine.”
The book’s plot revolves mainly around the horrific and unimaginable circumstances Circe faced when she realized her life had taken an unexplainable turn to an alternate world where not only was language a barrier, the cultural difference was shocking. But again, she took stock and together with new friends and a king determined to make her his, they found their way to happiness.
I don’t think I’ve done this book justice. I loved it. It’s worthy of reading, re-reading and then reading it all over again. After putting it down I felt just like Circe.
I missed my scary, savage brute, king of a marauding horde in another universe husband. How whacked was that?
Oh my gods! 4.5 stars because I need more! An epilogue!
Life was meant to be lived, every breath was a gift, every risk was worth taking.
Since this is the first book in the series, you may or may not be a Kristen Ashley(KA) fan, but I most certainly am. If you’re new, then let me tell you you’re in for an adventure beyond your Wildest Dreams, if not, you know what you’re in for.
There is no doubt in my mind that KA could be asked to write any type of genre and would do wonderfully, including writing about elves and flying, fire breathing dragons. Which is exactly what this book is about. Of course it doesn’t revolve around them exclusively; no, the book is about adventure, one big one taken upon Finnie to a parallel world where she finds her destiny, also known as Frey Drakkar master of said elves and dragons.
Kristen’s writing style is stamped in all her books. She takes the time to describe beautiful landscapes, scenery, castles galleons and cool-as-shit captain’s cabin all of it straight out of a movie; she introduces us not just to the main characters but funny and endearing secondary ones which you keep wanting to know about.
And she’s a master in the feelings department, which is the thing I like the most but struggle with equal measure. She makes us feel Frey and Finnie’s incredible love for each other, which in this case is the stuff of fairy tales and legends. But when you open your heart to feelings that run so deep, there’s also the risk that not all of those feelings will make you feel warm and fuzzy. Some, will make you hurt just as profoundly, but the end is totally worth it.
I haven’t said much about this book, but I thinki I’ve said enough.
”It was beyond anything I could have wished it to be. You are, my wee Finnie, beyond my wildest dreams.”
GOLDEN DYNASTY REVIEW -> https://tjlovestoread.wordpress.com/2014/03/28/review-the-golden-dynasty/
FANTASTICAL REVIEW -> https://tjlovestoread.wordpress.com/2014/03/28/review-fantastical/
BROKEN DOVE REVIEW -> https://tjlovestoread.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/review-broken-dove-by-kristen-ashley/
This book has the same problem as the first one, only for me it was worse… YOU GET HUNGRY!!!! but now you want DESSERT!!!!!
Cara and Shane!!! Nice couple! even though they married within 4 hours of meeting, and they were DRUNK!!!
Cara is as uptight as you can imagine, a controller and manager of people and situations, (which is great for her job) but there is always another side to every coin, a side she hides very well from every one, since she fears the loss of love from her family if they know the truth.
Shane also has a secret! a secret he has carried for a long time! and now is the one thing keeping him from getting everything he has dreamed of,and has always been afraid of getting.
As with the first book in this series, food is quintessential for everything, its woven so intricately that you cannot separate the characters from the food and viceversa!
But in this book, you get a little more of an insight in to the psychology of the characters, since Cara manages an eating disorder, and Shane tries to overcome an abusive father.
Each one has it’s demons, but eventually they find that together the manage not only to live by, but to flourish in the things they do best.
The family, a wonderful clan, is supportive and a great picture of what a family is all about!
This book, could be a five star book if at the end KATE MEADER WOULD PUT UP SOME OF THE MOUTH WATERING RECIPES SHE DESCRIBES!!!
Kate: consider it!! Please?
Another great book by Kate Meader! Also funny, witty, sensual and sharp.