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Smashwords book reviews by Kayla Stonor
on Dec. 21, 2012
Expedition is a simple tale of a doomed expedition to an island of demon-like creatures, death in the air, and an evil power deep in its bowels. The expedition is led by a proven warrior accompanied by a grumbling wizard. They are on a mission to discover the secrets of this island for King Eidon. There is much gruesome death, exciting fights, and a hint of love and tragedy. The ending sets up the sequel with the promise of conspiracy and intrigue ahead. The final fate of the expedition’s survivors remains the island’s secret. For now.
I've given it 3 stars because there are some editing issues and the characters could be more fully defined, but this short story nicely sets the scene for the main story to follow. I did like the slightly archaic writing style, it suits this fantasy world.
- The Nightlife: New York
on Dec. 28, 2012
A sexy vampire love story
Michelle is introduced to the reader as a vampire with a conscience shaped by her past with a nasty vampire master. Her last intention is to convert sweet, innocent Aaron, but he was in the wrong place at the wrong time so her choice is limited: blood-enslave him or let him die.
The author has created a vampire world, which is colorful, full of life, sex, and danger. The human 'cattle' display flashes of decency, but also weakness of character that makes us poor mortal souls seem rather depressing (although there is one human story that comes good which was great to see). But what I loved most about this story was the character development. Aaron comes into his own as a vampire and, by the end of the story, I was smitten by him. Michelle has to overcome her personal fears and open herself to love and trust. The result is a relationship I for one like to see. The writing is unique--another reviewer mentioned slightly narrated (I think). I agree with this. There was a slight distance to the telling, but it was refreshing and flowed beautifully.
Overall, an easy and very enjoyable read with solid character development, a realistic plot threading through, and some despicable antagonists who receive their due.
- Blood Slave
on Dec. 29, 2012
I had the pleasure of beta reading this story and so I am delighted to review the final product.
Hope caught me with her story from the moment her roommate rudely woke her up one evening to start her working day. Only I had no real idea if Hope was happy and well, or on her deathbed -- I was kept on tenterhooks to the very end. Travis Luedke draws his characters so brilliantly. Hope has experienced so much in her twenty-two years. She is streetwise, a survivor, and has learned from bitter experience to make her telepathy work for and not against her. Until the night she meets a vampire bitch, Lia.
Now she knows too much and Vampire Master Enrique decides the only way to control that knowledge is to turn Hope into a blood slave. A vampire's bite is addictive, and in Mr. Luedke's world, incredibly erotic. As an escort in the sex trade, Hope knows a lot of tricks. She turns Enrique on so much he can barely control his sexual urges and the result can be long and exhausting. Rough lust and passion puts Hope's life in danger more than once. But Hope's most endearing quality is her instinct for survival. She will fight, she will panic, she will run, she will distract, she will tempt, she will beg. She is a captive, a blood slave, addicted to vampire venom, and will do almost anything to survive, and she can never forget that Enrique's vampire servant, Lia, is forever present to turn her new world upside down.
But it is when Hope's past life catches up with her that the story becomes truly horrific and powerful reading.
Wow. When Hope runs for her life through New York City I ran with her. Her need was so powerful, so all-consuming, and this is when we find out exactly how much being a blood slave has changed her. I felt almost sorry for Enrique as the story reaches its wonderful conclusion -- retribution is extracted in full and three lives are changed forever.
This is a wonderful, escapist, paranormal romance. It is erotic, full of sex, both gentle and rough, but overriding all this is a beautiful story of love and personal growth that will touch your heart.
Don't miss out on a fantastic read.
- Jim Fosse's Expense Claim
on Jan. 19, 2013
This was hilarious. It's a cleverly constructed story told through written media (email, letter, articles). A maligned dealmaker cares nothing for the legalities of life when conducting business in cities where corporate rules of business simply don't apply, so long as he gets paid his expenses. I felt for the poor expenses manager, but had this crazy sense of Jim's increasing frustration. However, there is a slight twist in the tale: Jim seems determined to have the last word. A good, quick read!
This review is of a free copy.