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Our Most Recent Editorial Reviews
L.B. Alexander | Swan Lake
William Wolfe, of The Wolfe Group, is the alpha hero that sells romance novels, especially those tending toward the erotic side, but former ballet dancer, April Ekdahl, is the smart, classy, resilient heroine that female readers need to discover.
Disgraced businessman William Wolfe isn’t the man you’d think he is, and as his layers are slowly uncovered, so are the deeper and darker truths that make him simultaneously appealing and frightening. His new assistant’s assistant, April Ekdahl, surprises him at every turn—from the moment he catches her pirouetting in his office. She’s more than a pretty face and a dancer’s body, though—impressing him with her people skills, intellect, and business savvy, yet uncovered even to herself.
Alexander’s prose is gracefully fluid. She addresses Ekdahl’s anxiety, eating disorder, and past traumas with compassion, and a touch of terror. Wolfe’s intrigue never falters, permeating the story with wisdom and charm. In her debut, Alexander has already mastered the dark romance genre, creating a swoonworthy hero with a disturbing past, a sympathetic yet strong heroine, and the steamy scenes erotic romance readers crave.
SWAN LAKE can be appreciated not only by avid readers of upmarket romance, erotica, and women’s fiction, but by dance and art enthusiasts, especially those who love sculptures, paintings, and music from the Classical period. Alexander is obviously well-versed and comfortable with such art history—lacing them into her prose, subtly and deftly—but her references do not distract. Rather, they heighten the interest of the setting and characters, deepen the already-provoking sentiments, and remain accessible to modern readers.
The story conjures every emotion: from anxiety, depression, and horror, to hope, resiliency, and love. It’s one you can read again, and again, and still be captivated. Highly recommended.
Daniel L Welch | Tears of Blood
TEARS OF BLOOD, the debut novel by Daniel L Welch, is an inspiring, gripping, and mildly gory work of Historical Fantasy—a genre many attempt but few get right. Welch succeeds with prose that’s both blunt and beautiful, with seamlessly woven fantastical elements that feel frighteningly and wonderfully real, and by raining terror upon his characters while instilling in the reader a palpable sense that everything can still get much, much worse.
TEARS OF BLOOD is set in the Dark Ages in the fictional country of Veronia, where citizens enjoy abundant resources among the free cities. The biggest threat is invasion by enemy armies who wish to claim the land of Veronia as their own, but the threat of civil war also looms as the country’s leadership grows unstable and a blasphemous new religion is formed. To make matters worse, a mysterious, magical group of immortals threaten hell on earth. Captain Leo Rosewood, Welch’s remarkably unwavering war hero, has the physical vigor, supernatural power, and mental stability needed to conquer such threats and protect Veronia. His brother, Bishop Jewel, shares the same steadfastness of character and sharpness of mind, and is willing to risk everything to save the church.
Though Welch doesn’t shy away from the descriptive showing of savagery, violence, and the bloodshed of war, it’s the message of devotion and faith and true heroism—the kind that means tenaciously doing the right thing and never giving up—that is the real marvel in TEARS OF BLOOD. The first in a planned series, Welch’s debut is sure to fit nicely on a shelf next to Gabaldon and Martin, and will leave readers eager for the next installment.
Donovan Pruitt | City of Roses
Donovan Pruitt’s debut novella, CITY OF ROSES, is a masterfully constructed work of Paranormal Romance. Pruitt deftly manipulates both language and history to craft a tale that is equal parts harrowing, emotional and inspiring, while offering plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader intrigued—from delightful beginning to spellbinding conclusion.
The story begins when a motorcycle accident jars Alex into a reality he can’t remember, and one he’s not quite sure he’d ever want to leave. He’s nearly blinded by the landscape’s beauty, the lively culture of the townspeople, and a remarkable woman he would swear he’s met before. When disaster strikes, Alex must help save the town and people he’s grown to love, setting aside his unanswered questions and the fear of what he can’t remember.
CITY OF ROSES is a unique retelling of the 1986 Chernobyl disaster in Pripyat, Ukraine. Pruitt reflects on the disaster with the skill of a seasoned author, adding romantic and fantastical elements to draw the reader in and keep them engaged until its final, heart-pounding climax. Pruitt’s poetic prose, distinctive characters and vivid imagery make this an easy, fast-paced read, and the perfect way to spend an afternoon.
Whitney Williams | Carried Away
CARRIED AWAY, the impressive debut novel by J. Whitney Williams, is a romantic tale of personal growth that’s both deeply emotional and delightfully disturbing.
The plot follows a prodigious woman who flees from the expectation of a mediocre life, discovers a world peopled by those even more brilliant and daring than her, and ultimately realizes that she has unintentionally fallen in love with the man facilitating her escape.
With its true-to-life characters in their depth and complexity, and prose that manipulates language as the characters do to each other, CARRIED AWAY is as poetic as it is provocative. Sexy as it is insightful. Self-reflective as it is sheer entertainment.
Williams is a master storyteller, spinning yarn into gold with the skill of a seasoned author. CARRIED AWAY is the first installment of what is sure to become a highly anticipated series of erotic romance.
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