For What It's Worth

Thursday, April 26, 2018

review: blood fury (black dagger legacy #3) J.R. ward

34019141A vampire aristocrat, Peyton is well aware of his duty to his bloodline: mate with an appropriate female of his class and carry on his family’s traditions. And he thought he’d found his perfect match—until she fell in love with someone else. Yet when his split-second decision in a battle with the enemy endangers the life of another trainee, Peyton has to face the idea that his future, and his heart, actually lie with another.
Novo, as a female in the Black Dagger Brotherhood’s training program, feels like she has to prove herself to everybody—and she has no interest in being distracted by falling in love. But when Peyton proves to be so much more than a rich playboy, she is forced to confront the tragedy that has broken her soul and closed her off from love.
As the two grapple with Novo’s past and Peyton’s present, another couple must contend with an erotic connection that is unparalleled—and potentially scandalous.
Saxton, who has had his heart broken, discovers in himself a deep-seated attraction to Ruhn, a new member of the household. But will the other male explore the connection? Or will he close his mind and his heart to what could be true love . . . and cost Saxton everything? ~

Source: Library

Review: I gave up on Ward’s books and the BDB (Black Dagger Brotherhood) years ago. I think the last one I read was book #9 (although I did read #11 – Qhuay’s book). I actually have Lover Reborn (BDB #10) but haven’t read it. By that point I was basically rage reading/reviewing her books.

She had so many story lines and pov’s going on that the couple got shorted out of their own books, the product placement and slang overtook everything. There was no longer a sense of Brotherhood and things were being dragged out unnecessarily for no good reason – only to be dropped later. My blood pressure is going up just thinking about it again lol

Anyhoo….she started this Black Dagger Legacy series with the new trainees and I had heard good things but still – it wasn’t enough to bring me back until this book. There are two couples – Peyton and Nova (M/f) and Saxton and Ruhn (M/M) and I knew Saxton from the original series so I already felt a little bit of an emotional investment in his HEA going in and hearing that this was her best books in years, I decided to give it a try.

Despite there being 4 pov’s, there’s a common theme between both couples – unrequited love that both Saxton and Peyton need to move on from and a feeling of unworthiness for Nova and Ruhn. That commonality works and stops the back and forth from being too jarring. Both couples proceed at almost the same pace even though their stories and characters are quite different.

I actually got this one from the library because I was convinced I wouldn’t make it past the first 50 pages and didn’t want to waste money on buying it. Instead I was completely absorbed in both romances – irritated when life made me put the book down. Each pov ends on a bit of a cliffhanger making you NEED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS. Which was a ton of fun as a reader and harken's back to Ward’s early writing style.

There’s very little in way the of The Chosen, the Lessers or anything else really unless it is something that helps move the romances forward. So if you’re looking for that this might not be for you. She still drops all the brand name references but she seems to have pared it down some and they were actually relevant to the scenes so I was ok with it here.

And just a quick note about each couple:

Peyton and Nova: fiery and combative at first, sexy as hell. While Nova doesn’t take playboy Peyton seriously, he decides to pull his shit together and be there for her even as she pushed him away. She has really good reasons and Peyton was a steady force for her – waiting until she was ready to open her heart to him. CW: –> miscarriage<-

Saxton and Ruhn: Saxton is so broken after his relationship with Blay ended. Having to see Blay with Qhuinn and the babies is like a stab to the heart every day. He believes something fundamental broke in him after Blay and he’s never meant to have love again until Ruhn enters his life. Ruhn is  a gentle giant that was forced into deplorable acts and they are so perfectly right for each other, despite being complete opposites. Saxton is highly refined and enjoys the best of things while Ruhn lives simply but shares his love totally and completely. He reminded me a bit of Z and what he went through with his past.

Gah! This book gave me the warm romantic fuzzies! It’s really what I needed to read after a few ambigious ending romances. I needed rock solid and I got it. In fact, it got a little sappy towards the end.  I love you – no I love you – no, I love you MORE shmoopy woopy….lol but I’ll take it!

I’m not sure I’m ready to come back into the Warden fold but I’ll definitely keep an open mind with future installments of this series.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

whatever wednesday: music - leon bridges


I haven’t featured music for a while and I really need to because I’ve been listening to all the music lately!

Have you guys heard of Leon Bridges? He’s an American gospel singer and record producer from Texas. I love retro Motown sound but with a contemporary feel. He has really interesting videos too. Website

Bad Bad News (my favorite of his songs)

Bet Ain’t Worth the Hand (I love the video)

Monday, April 23, 2018

my monday musings: Tbr pile–conquered!

Dealing with TBR piles are part of being a blogger. It’s an endless cycle because we can’t seem to resist shiny new books. It’s worse if you accept review books and go to book conferences *points at self*.

I’ve been dealing my own overwhelming TBR pile ever since my first BEA in 2011 and have never fully recovered.

Over the years I’ve hunkered down and tackled one group at a time. First up, in 2016, was my Kindle. I had hundreds of books on there and most were freebie/impulse buys that I totally forgot why I got them in the first place and never read. I sorted them into bookshelves by genre, deleted what no longer appealed to me and read, read, read. I’m now down to about 40 and usually read anything new right away. I’m comfortable with that.

Next up was where it got tricky and harder to control – review copies/Netgalley. For the past 2 years
I scaled WAY back on requests and hunkered down to read what I had accepted already.

I currently only have 1 book ready for feedback on Netgalley and zero review requests pending. I only accept 2-3 requests per month - and request no more than 2 at a time on Netgalley - and for the last few months I didn’t take any. So that’s totally under control.

That leaves my physical TBR pile which I have been working on since January of 2017. I started with 139 books and had hoped to get down to 50 but barely made a dent by January 2018. I had gotten down to 89 but, to be perfectly honest, that was more through purging than reading.

          January 2017 - 139 books                                        January 2018 - 89 books

Better, but still not where I wanted to be and still stressful because I’m such a mood reader and nothing from this pile was appealing to me. And HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE??? Instead, I bought new books and watched this stack stay stagnant and even grow. 😭😭

I foolishly registered for ALA (The American Library Association conference) this year so I NEEEEEDED to get this pile down before I bring any new books in. I became laser focused and mostly read from this stack – with few exceptions – since January and I DID IT!!! I am down to 50 books!!!!!!


               April 2018 - 50 books!

I knew that reading for review can take some of the joy away but it’s amazing how having that pressure lifted has changed everything.

I feel so freeeeeee! I love reading again, I’m enjoying almost everything. I’m less critical because I’m reading for fun and not on a deadline. I can switch up genres, dnf at will, not read for a week.

Now, I may screw it all up again by going to ALA lol but I don’t think so. While I went absolutely crazy for books my first two cons – I’ve been very selective since then and go more to hang with friends than to grab all the books.  And the conference is in June so I still have a few months to get that pile down even more.

It probably would be closer to 30 if I didn’t keep getting unsolicited books from publishers. I’m not complaining though because they’ve been pretty awesome books.

I don’t think I’ll ever be down to 0 books – nor do I want to be – that would set off a different kind of panic lol but it’s nice to be free of the pressure of having so many books that were given to me for review (mostly at conferences) just sitting there for years. It felt wrong. And I’ve learned my lesson!

Now if I could just find a blogging groove again - that would be fantastic! I shouldn't be greedy though. Hahaha!

How is your TBR pile? (btw – I’m only discussing books I actually own or have for review – I’m not talking about a Goodreads wish list type of TBR) 

Do you ever think you’ll get it under control or how you keep it under control?

Or do you love and embrace your TBR pile?