Review: On Every Street by Karina Halle

Blurb:

When young con artist Ellie Watt decides to call herself Eden White and go after the drug lord who ruined her as a child, she never expects to fall for one of his henchmen. But Javier Bernal is no ordinary man. Subtly dangerous and overwhelmingly seductive, Eden finds herself passionately in love with Javier, the very person she’s set-up to betray. With her body and heart in a heated battle against her deep need for revenge, no one will walk away from this con a winner.

This 50K word (100+ pages) novella takes place six years before Sins & Needles (book #1 of The Artists Trilogy) and tells the story of Ellie and Javier’s passionate yet torrid affair. It can be read before or after Sins & Needles.
You do not need to have read Sins & Needles to enjoy this book and can be read as a standalone.

***Contains graphic sexual scenes, language and violence***

This is the prequel to Sins & Needles, delving into the life of Ellie as she meets Javier.  I’m glad Karina Halle decided to write this prequel-it gives a lot to the background for Sins & Needles in regards to Javier and Ellie.

Ellie decides she needs revenge on a drug lord who scarred her leg when she was just a child, caught trying to steal from him per her parents’ order.  She figures the best way to the man she is looking for is to get close to one of his associates.  Enter Javier.  But what she doesn’t expect is to actually fall in love with him.

This story takes you through their relationship-the ups and downs.  It includes love, lust, and extreme heartbreak.  On Every Street did help me to get into Ellie’s head easier, so her character development was mainly built in this story.  I would highly recommend reading this if you choose to read The Artists Trilogy.

While Javier doesn’t have the ideal occupation, you actually do feel something for him.  He shows a human side that you wouldn’t think for a seasoned killer.  This is not a typical romance-it’s messed up and messy.  I do recommend reading it!

I give it 5 out of 5!

Advertisements

Review: Sins & Needles (The Artists Trilogy #1) by Karina Halle

Blurb:

Ellie Watt is used to starting over. The daughter of a grifting team, Ellie spent her childhood being used as a pawn in her parents’ latest scam. Now she’s much older, wiser and ready to give her con artist life a rest. But returning to the dry desert town of Palm Valley, California means one more temptation than she bargained for – Camden McQueen. Once known as the high school weirdo, Camden is bigger and badder than the boy he used to be and a talented tattoo artist with his own thriving business. Ellie’s counting on Camden still being in love with her but what she’s not counting on is how easily unrequited love can turn into obsession over time. When Camden discovers Ellie’s plan to con him, he makes her a deal she doesn’t dare refuse, but her freedom comes with a price and it’s one that takes both Ellie and Camden down a dangerous road.**WARNING** This book contains graphic language, sex and violence. Readers who are sensitive to sexual scenes, violence and a lot of cursing should refrain from reading this book.This is not YA or NA. 18 and above.

Look for On Every Street – Ellie and Javier’s story, out March 12th 2013

 
I love Karina Halle’s series, Experiment in Terror, so I decided to give her other books a read.  In Sins and Needles, Ellie is a con artist who returns to a small town to try to get her life on track.  She is running from something she did, but you don’t find out about it for a little while.  You do know she’s running from a really dangerous man, though.
She meets back up with Camden McQueen, a guy she went to school with.  In school, they started as friends-he was a goth kid, she was the town’s con artists’ daughter.  Until she gets a chance to be friends with the popular girls.  Then, she basically turns into a bully against Camden in school.  So, when she returns to the small town, she doesn’t expect to see him, especially him all tatted up with a built body.  Camden still has feelings for Ellie, but Ellie ends up seeing him as a mark.  Maybe her last mark, to steal from and start a new life, but a mark none the less.
But Camden can’t be fooled so easily-he’s basically been waiting for her.  He catches her while she tries to rob him, and blackmails her into helping him.  This takes them both on a road of serious danger.  He doesn’t initially understand the type of danger, but soon finds out.
I did enjoy this book, and will finish the series.  But I did have a hard time identifying with Ellie and her feelings.  Spoiler*****Do not read anymore if you don’t want to see what happens!!!!  Ellie ends up falling for Camden, which would be fine, if he wasn’t a freaking psycho!  Yeah, he’s sexy enough, but seriously has issues!  He basically wants to get back at Ellie for humiliating him in high school, and also because he has some obsessive qualities where he still wants to be with her.  He claims to still love her, and while they are on the run, from her ex-boyfriend who she stole money and his car, she falls in love with him.
Now I know her lifestyle doesn’t offer up the good guy to love, but Camden seriously has issue! If you read the book, you will understand.  That was my main snag with this book.  I understand why the author did that-Ellie has always been a con artist and will never have the good life.  But I was hoping for a bit more redeeming qualities with Camden.  Maybe he will be redeemed in the following books.  Hopefully!
Anyways, overall, I did enjoy this book.  I give it a 4 out of 5.

Review: And With Madness Comes the Light (Experiment in Terror #6.5) by Karina Halle

Blurb:

The Man. The Mystery. The Madness.

Dex Foray has never been anyone’s fool – until he missed his chance for happiness with Perry Palomino. Broken and alone, Dex has no choice but to rise from the ashes Perry left behind and find his own path to redemption. But nothing in Dex’s life has ever come easily, especially when there’s a dark madness waiting in the wings.

Told from Dex’s POV, And With Madness Comes the Light is short story/novella that spans the time period from the end of Lying Season (Book #4) until the end of On Demon Wings (Book #5). If you were ever wondering what really happened to Dex while Perry was gone – his journey to Dex 2.0 – now is your chance.

*****WARNING***** This novella is not a standalone and contains spoilers for Experiment in Terror Books #1-5. It also contains harsh language and scenes of a sexual nature*******

Again, love this series!  And this is told from Dex’s POV.  Ah, gotta love Dex!  It starts with his and Perry’s break up, or break down, whatever you want to call it.  And follows him through his transformation to Dex 2.0.

I loved being able to get inside his head, to see what he was feeling and going through during their separation.  His struggle to become something better, for himself and for Perry.  This story made me love him much more.  Initially in the series, he seems kinda like an ass.  But as the series continues, you see he’s not as much of an ass, or pig, as he tries to portray.

Love this novella.  It was short, quick, and interesting.  Excellent character development for Dex, delving deeper into his emotional state to you understand him much more.

I obviously give this one a 5 out of 5!  Unfortunately, I have to wait until June for the next book, which will be told entirely from Dex’s POV.  It will be interesting to have it from his POV only.  I’m hoping I like the full length novel as much as this novella from his POV.

Review: Into the Hollow (Experiment in Terror #6) by Karina Halle

Blurb:

Perry Palomino has fought her demons – and won – but the battle is far from over. She’s now left broken and on her own, leaving behind her life and family in Portland to focus on giving Dex Foray – and the Experiment in Terror show – a second chance. But their past mistakes continue to tease and test their relationship, as does the wild and desolate terrain of the Canadian Rockies. The snow-covered peaks and ravenous forests hide an urban legend too unbelievably frightening to be true and the only way the duo has a chance of surviving is if Perry can let in the very man who sent her to hell and back.

This series is awesome!  It follows Perry and Dex as they star in a show about ghosts and supernatural legends.  This is a re-read for me, since a new novella just came out that I will be reading next.

The creativity and suspense that Karina Halle writes captures you and makes you feel like you are with them on their adventures.  When I initially started reading this series a while ago, I wasn’t sure if I would like it.  It’s so difficult to write good ghost stories, but Ms. Halle does an awesome job!

And it’s not just the ghost stories, but the Perry and Dex relationship that pulls you in as well.  I don’t want to give too much away with this review, since I think you need to read the entire series before starting this one.  But, the entire series, you are fighting for Dex and Perry to be together.

And these books will keep you glued to the pages until you finish!  They are scary, and sexy!  When I first started reading them, I actually kept the light on in my bathroom when going to sleep!  Yes, I will admit that.  No shame in it.

Anyway, Into the Hollow is the first assignment for Dex and Perry after so much crap has gone on.  They are supposed to film about a Sasquatch, or Big Foot, in the mountains.  The usual stories center around ghosts, so this one was a bit different with an actual creature.  Even though you may think that searching for Big Foot would be stupid or cheesy, the way this is written is neither of those.

Oh, I just love this series!  So, I’m off to read the latest novella, And With Madness Comes the Light-which you have to read to understand the name.

I obviously give this a 5 out of 5!  Editing was great, character development was great, everything was great!