Fantasy Romance

Read Wilder’s Mate

Read Wilder’s Mate (Bloodhounds, #1)

Wilder Harding is a bloodhound, created by the Guild to…

The heroine was in a tough spot but I still found her attention to the hero a little self-motivated, wanting a protector so she wouldn’t have to become a prostitute, which, fair.

Kinda steampunk, kinda post-apocalyptic, kinda Weird West, kinda paranormal romance. The plot could have used a bit more, but it was a short book so didn’t have time for a lot of scenes.

Fantasy Romance

Read Wolf’s Lady

Read Wolf’s Lady

The only mistake Lady Adelle Thornber ever made turned into a scandal that rocked London and saw her banished to Scotland, the reluctant bride of a reclusive baron. But Lord Henry MacAulay isn’t what she was expecting: he cares deeply for his barony and for her.

As the sole heir to the Roseheath title and werewolf alpha, Henry knew that he had to take a mate someday. He just didn’t expect to find her in a disgraced noble’s daughter forced into marriage with him. But as he falls more deeply in love with Adelle, he can’t bring himself to tell her what he really is. But when he can, it isn’t his werewolf nature that may tear them apart.

Another loose Beauty and the Beast retelling with werewolves. This worked as a novella but didn’t have much room to develop the characters’ personalities and histories like a full novel would. The hero’s decision not to tell her things was obviously dumb, and the heroine’s actions during the climax were foolish though her reasoning was explained.


Played From Dreams or Angels by Abney Park

Listened From Dreams or Angels — Abney Park | by Abney Park from

11 tracks (43:37)

Remembering the suggestion I saw the other day of listening to your favorite band’s full catalog in order, I started today with From Dreams or Angels.

I’ve mostly stopped listening to this album, remembering it as sounding a little dated, but I was digging it today. The guitar’s heavier than a lot of their newer stuff, their industrial roots clearer. Some of the recording sounds a little compressed maybe? The only part that sounds really dated is the opening notes of Breathe — but there’s a nice acoustic version at the end of the album 😉

It’s big on the mystical, world music vibe, with varied instrumentation and beats. I like the voice of the female singer, it suits the moodiness. The album opens with a soft, slightly spooky intro, then revs up quickly. Heavy beats carry through the album, feels very danceable. Favorite tracks on re-listen: The Root of All Evil, Thornes & Brambles, Holy War, Kine.

Thematically, the world described in this album is much more traditional fantasy / magic-themed than their later steampunk albums. None of the lyrics spoke to independence / uniqueness / escaping the rat race, which seems a recurring theme later.

It’s a little horrifying to listen to Holy War, which samples news reports about the war in Afghanistan, and realize that it was only last year we finally brought our troops home, a failed war ending in ignominy and needless death. Twenty years after this album was released.


Played Iconoclast by Abney Park

Listened Iconoclast — Abney Park | by Abney Park from

15 tracks (50:33)

I’m a huge Abney Park fan, but haven’t listened to this album that much because the CD was really expensive on their pre-order so I only got the digital tracks, and Spotify made it harder / less appealing to listen to your own music library at the same time (and they reasonably don’t release their latest album on Spotify right away so people will actually buy it).

I don’t like the first song, but the rest of the album is good. Several of my favorite tracks are actually from the extended album, which adds five songs.

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is fun and delightfully goofy. Keep It Strange captures the feel of the title nicely. Magic Dance is catchy (I never saw the movie it’s from so I don’t know what the original sounds like).

Fantasy Romance

Re-read Evernight

Read Evernight (Darkest London, #5) by Kristen Callihan

Will Thorne is living a nightmare, his sanity slowly being drained away by a force he can’t control. His talents have made him the perfect assassin for hire. But as he loses his grip on reality, there is no calming him—until he finds his next target: the mysterious Holly Evernight.

Love must cast aside the shadows . . .

Holly cannot fathom who would put a contract on her life, yet the moment she touches Will, the connection between them is elemental, undeniable—and she’s the only one who can tame his bouts of madness. But other assassins are coming for Holly. Will must transform from killer to protector and find the man who wants Holly dead . . . or his only chance for redemption will be lost.

I always skip the subplots when I reread this one since I didn’t especially like the next book.

I forget how crude the hero talks sometimes, the words he uses even in his internal narration. But it’s in keeping with his perspective and “earthiness” as it were, his love of all things emotional. I really like how her coming to accept him for what he is is an important part of the story.

I keep coming back to this one. This is at least the fourth time I’ve read it, probably more like sixth since Goodreads didn’t used to track rereads.

Fantasy Romance

Read Cinderfella

Read Cinderfella – A Steampunk Fairy Tale, Sweet & Steamy, 2 by Nikki Woolfolk

Ashland Gottschalk, a sweet-tempered glassblower, is caught up in a horrible set of circumstances no thanks to an evil manager and his two wicked assistants heaping abuse on the downtrodden workers of the Pantoufle Glass Factory. But with a clever plan, borrowed items, and a touch of magic, Ash’s friends transform the kind cinderfella into a proper gentleman for one stolen evening.

Clever reimagining of Cinderella in an AU where Black people are the leaders and white people lower class and often treated poorly. One hero is white and a lowly but skilled laborer while the other is Black and a representative of Queen Victoria.

I think this would have benefited from being a little longer and extending their romance a bit. There was so much about the world to intrigue that this felt like an amuse-bouche. I also wanted a little more action and less passivity from the MC. As is, though, it is true to its fairy tale inspiration in feel and pacing, so I understand that choice.