Colton by Blood (The Coltons of Wyoming) by Melissa Cutler

Colton by Blood (The Coltons of Wyoming) by Melissa Cutler
Publication Date: August 1, 2013
Reviewed by: Reading In Pajamas/ Cori
Rated: 4.5 Stars

BOOK DESCRIPTION:

Rising romantic suspense star Melissa Cutler reveals more secrets from the Coltons of Wyoming… An unsolved murder haunts those who live and work at Dead River Ranch. When called to care for the ailing Colton patriarch, Dr. Levi Colton must face the father who never claimed him. He’s not looking for distraction, but he finds it in Kate McCord, the irresistible pastry chef. Beneath her sweet smile are scars from her own tragedy—and a determination for justice.

As a wildfire forces them together with an unknown killer, Levi and Kate must confront an attraction that flares hotter than flames. They edge closer to the truth, discovering that the secret that links their pasts could lead them straight into the killer’s trap.

REVIEW:

I loved Colton by Blood! It is the second book in the Colton series written by different Harlequin authors. I haven’t read the other books in the series, but requested this one because I read Tempted Into Danger by Melissa Cutler and loved it. She is quickly becoming a favorite author of mine after reading my second book written by her. She definitely knows how to write sexy heroes. I loved the hot Dr. Levi Colton. Both Levi and Kate have been through a lot and are portrayed in a way that really makes the reader feel for them. Their story is fast paced, emotional and full of passion. I will be going back to read the first book in the Colton series by another author and look forward to reading what happens next in the series. I am also putting Melissa Cutler on my must buy list. She writes great romantic suspense books.

*Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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Cloak & Silence (The League) by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Cloak & Silence (The League) by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Publication Date: July 8, 2013

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Book Description:

One of the fiercest soldiers the Phrixians have ever produced, Maris Sulle has been an outsider the whole of his life. He grew up with a secret that cost him everything- His birthright, his family and his military career. In all his life, he’s only had one love and he has sacrificed his own happiness to see his best friend reunited with the woman he loves. But now that his good deed is done, he feels lost and adrift. Even though they do their best to include him in their new family, he’s once again on the outside looking in.

Ture has spent his life hiding from everyone around him while trying desperately to fit in. His family, the world, you name it. Badly hurt by everyone he’s ever known, he trusts no one except his own best friend. And honestly, he can’t understand why he trusts her. Nor can he believe her when she describes a loyalty between friends the likes of which he’s never seen.

But when he is in his darkest hour, he’s saved by a hero he thought only existed in novels. A man who is every bit as scarred and mistrusting as he is. One who has no interest in being dragged into another relationship with anyone.

Having spent his life as a living study of doomed relationships, Maris is well aware of the courtship and fiasco that invariably follows. Still, there is something about Ture he can’t resist. Something that won’t let him walk away when he knows he should.

But when old enemies return to threaten them both, they either have to stand together or die alone.

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EXCERPT from Cloak & Silence by Sherrilyn Kenyon

But this wasn’t about the freedom of people who wouldn’t spit on them if they were on fire.

This was about their own survival. They had already killed her once. Next time, they might not revive her.

He brushed the bloody hair back from her face. “You need to think of your baby, honey. You’re lucky you haven’t miscarried already.”

Still, she held on to a blind hope he couldn’t even begin to fathom. “Darling will come for me. I know he will.”

Ture ground his teeth at her childish devotion. Not once since they’d been taken had it faltered. She honestly thought her boyfriend would come risk his own life and free them from this hellhole.

How he wished he could believe it, too. But he knew better. “Heroes aren’t real. They don’t come charging in to save their damsel. Trust me. They vapor trail off at the first sign of trouble, leaving you behind to face the invading army all by yourself, hoping they’ll burn the house down on top of you so they don’t have to see you again.”

“No, Ture. Those are selfish assholes. A hero doesn’t give up or give in. Ever. Darling told me he would crawl naked through hell, over broken glass, just to hold my hand, and I believe him.”

“Men will say anything to get into your pants, love. They don’t mean a word of it.”

She took his hand into hers and held it tight. “I’m sorry that you’ve never been in love with a man who really loved you back, Ture. But I’m telling you… I have seen what Darling and Maris have gone through for each other and they won’t leave us here. They won’t rest until they’ve rescued us. I know it.”

Ture opened his mouth, then closed it. There was no need in arguing. She had her belief and he had his. Maybe there had been a time in his life when he’d been so blinded by love that he, too, believed such bullshit. But too many years of being bitch-slapped by selfish dicks had taken its toll on him.

Not even his own family had ever been there when he needed them. So why should a stranger?

But in spite of his past, he wouldn’t take away the only thing that gave her comfort. Let her have her delusions while she could. He tightened his grip on her hand as his heart broke from the fear of losing her. Just like his sister.

Her interrogators had killed her today during her torture and then brought her back just so they could continue on with it.

Damn them all for it.

“I hope you’re right, sweetie,” he breathed against her hair. The last thing he wanted was for her to learn the harsh lessons that had been rammed down his throat. He wept for the loss of anyone’s innocence, especially when the loss was brutal. And deep down in a place he hated, was that last vestige of his own hope that she was right. That maybe, just maybe, there were people in the world worth something. Someone who could stand by you even in hell and not betray you.

“Zarya?”

“Mmm?”

“Tell me what it’s like to be held by someone who really loves you.”

Zarya swallowed hard. His request wrung her heart. While almost everyone she’d ever loved had been brutally murdered, Ture’s family had abandoned or disowned him. Because of that, he’d had an even harder time trusting people than she did. No matter what, he expected the people around him to turn on him.

The saddest part?

They always had.

“It’s the most wonderful thing you can imagine. There’s truly nothing like it.”

He sighed wearily. “I don’t know how you can take such a beating and still protect him.”

How could she not? Darling would do the same for her, and then some. She had no doubt. He really was that kind of man. “Did I ever tell you what my mother’s last words were to me?”

He shook his head.

“It was the morning when she went to confront my father’s killer. I asked her why she wouldn’t let one of the soldiers or gerents handle his rescue. And she said to me that all little girls, regardless of what they say, dream of a prince to come in and sweep them off their feet and save the day. But what no one ever mentions is that all little boys dream of a princess to do the same thing for them. But the problem with princes and princesses is that they’re spoiled and self-absorbed. They act in their own best interest. They don’t go after their loved ones to rescue them so much as they do it for their own vainglory, and to serve themselves. While she’d had many princes try for her hand, it was a king who claimed her heart. Unlike princes, kings take responsibility. They think of others instead of themselves and they will risk everything, even their very lives, for those they love. It is never about them, but rather about the ones they cherish most. They love to such depth that they would sacrifice all just to see their family smile. For every thousand princes, there is only one king. And such rare men do not deserve a useless princess who sits on her duff and orders others to worship her and do her bidding. Kings deserve queens- rare women who never flinch to do whatever it takes to keep their king safe. Women who have the courage to face any attacker and to rally to whatever challenge life throws at them. I will not sit here, she said to me, and let your father suffer while I hide in comfort. He risked his life to keep us safe and I will do no less for him. If it means my life, so be it. After all, he is my life and I don’t want to live without him. He deserves only my best and that’s exactly what he’s going to get, no matter the cost.”

Ture drew a ragged breath as the tears welling in her eyes choked him. “Though I never had the pleasure of meeting her, I love your mother. You know that, right?”

She squeezed his hand. “I love her, too. And I’ve tried every day of my life to do her proud and to be the queen she wanted me to be.”

He kissed the side of her head. “Sweetie, you are better than any queen. You’re a freedom fighter for our people and if your Darling is the king you think him to be, you will live to be an empress.”

“Then I shall be an empress. You will see.”

Ture smiled at the sincerity of her tone. How she could still believe in fairytales after everything life had tossed in her face, he had no idea. “Fine then. Just make sure when you’re empress, you find a queen for me.”

“I will.”

Ture tightened his grip on her as she went limp in his arms. Fear seized him until he assured himself that she was still breathing.

Thank the gods she wasn’t dead.

But she wouldn’t be able to survive much more. For that matter, neither would he. Every day got harder. They couldn’t break him because he knew nothing. They couldn’t break her because she was the most stubborn creature alive.

He admired that even though it made him want to wring her neck.

His one greatest hope was that her king was the man she’d convinced herself that he was. In his world, such men didn’t exist. They were fables and lies.

Still, he couldn’t stop imagining a world where people didn’t disappoint each other. A world where you could put your life and heart into the hands of another and not fear betrayal or hurt. A universe populated by people like Zarya…

You sound like an old woman.

He felt like an old man. Jaded. Cold. Aching. He licked at the blood on his lips and forced his thoughts away from things he knew were lies. Things that were impossible. People sucked. They were users and no matter how much you gave, they never stayed.

Closing his eyes, he prayed for death. And why shouldn’t he? He had no reason to live. Nothing to live for. Life just was.

And he was so tired now…

Quotes: Sherrilyn Kenyon

“It’s easy to look at people and make quick judgments about them, their present and their past, but you’d be amazed at the pain and tears a single smile hides. What a person shows to the world is only one tiny facet of the iceberg hidden from sight. And more often then not, it’s lined with cracks and scars that go all the way to the foundation of their soul.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Acheron

“Laugh as much as you breathe and love as long as you live.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Born of Shadows

“Don’t let those people steal your day”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Acheron

“My father used to say that life is what you make it. Today is the first day of the rest of your life. You can’t change the past, but the future isn’t set in stone. You can effect a change there. Move forward not with hatred or love. Move forward with purpose. (Simone)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Dream Chaser

“How could one sentence uttered in anger cause so much damage? But then words were the most powerful thing in the universe. Cuts and bruises always healed, but words spoken in anger were most often permanent. They didn’t damage the body, they destroyed the spirit. (Acheron)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Acheron

“It actually dawned on me that I don’t fight. I just kill whatever annoys me, and it’s over. (Savitar)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Dark Side of the Moon

“Sometimes things have to go wrong in order to go right.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon

“Nothing is ever truly set by fate. In one blink, everything changes. Even though it should be a clear, sunny day, the softest whisper into the wind can become a hurricane that destroys everything it touches. (Acheron)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Sins of the Night

“Baby, it’s either laugh or cry and crying takes way too much energy. If you can’t find humor in the shit life heaps on you, you really will grow miserable.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Born of Night

“Everyone suffers at least one bad betrayal in their lifetime. It’s what unites us. The trick is not to let it destroy your trust in others when that happens. Don’t let them take that from you.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Invincible

“And I flunked anger management the moment I put the counselor through a stone wall. You might want to keep that in mind. (Thorn)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Bad Moon Rising

“You know, it’s amazing to me the wounds we carry for eternity. But what has fascinated me most these last few years is how the right person can heal them. I remember a wise man once said to me that everyone deserves to be loved. Even you. (Zarek)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Acheron

“People destroy beauty when they find it. (Acheron)
How so? (Artemis)
By nature, people are petty and jealous. They envy what they lack and because they don’t know how to acquire something, they try to destroy anyone who has it. Beauty is one of those things they hate most in others. (Acheron)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Acheron

“Life is a tapestry woven by the decisions we make.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Kiss of the Night

“I learned a long time ago not to judge people by what they look like, sound like, or by the clothes they wear. Just because a house is nice and shiny out front doesn’t mean it’s not rotting on the inside. (Kyrian)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Infinity

“You’ll never see the moments coming that will for ever mutilate your life-at least not until after they’ve mowed you down. -Savitar”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Acheron

“I think infatuation is like a garden. If tended and cared for, it grows into love. If neglected or abused it dies. The only way to have eternal love is to never let your heart forget what it’s like to live without it. (Vane)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Night Play

“People aren’t just ants rushing around over a crust of bread. Every life, no matter how isolated, touches hundreds of others. It’s up to us to decide if those micro connections are positive or negative. But whichever we decide, it does impact the ones we deal with. One word can give someone the strength they needed at that moment or it can shred them down to nothing. A single smile can turn a bad moment good. And one wrong outburst or word could be the tiny push that causes someone to slip over the edge into destruction.”
— Sherrilyn Kenyon, Infamous (Chronicles of Nick, #3)

“If you muster that courage to stand under fire and not go down, you will amass an inner strength that no one can touch. You won’t be another faceless, nameless, forgotten human in a long historical line of the defeated. You will be a steeled warrior, and a force to be forever reckoned with. And beneath the pain that lingers, you will have the comfort of knowing that you are strongest of all. That when others caved and broke, you kept fighting even against hopeless odds.” (Caleb)
— Sherrilyn Kenyon (Inferno (Chronicles of Nick, #4))

“The depth and strength of our character is defined by our moral code. People only reveal themselves when they’re thrown out of the usual conditions of their lives. That’s when the truth of who they are is revealed…”
— Sherrilyn Kenyon, Born of Shadows (The League, #4)

“Strength through adversity. The strongest steel is forged by the fires of hell. It is pounded and struck repeatedly before it’s plunged back into the molten fire. The fire gives it power and flexibility, and the blows give it strength. Those two things make the metal pliable and able to withstand every battle it’s called upon to fight. (Savitar)”
— Sherrilyn Kenyon, Devil May Cry (Dark-Hunter, #12)

“Acheron always says that our scars are there to remind us of out pasts, of where we’ve been and what we’ve gone through. But that pain doesn’t have to drive or determine our future. We can rise above it if we let ourselves. It’s not easy, but nothing in life ever is.” (Sundown)
— Sherrilyn Kenyon (Retribution (Dark-Hunter, #20; Were-Hunter, #7)

“Life is gamble, It’s harsh and painful most of the time, and it’s not for the timid. Spoils go to the victor, not to the one who doesn’t even show up for the battle.” (Acheron)
— Sherrilyn Kenyon, Night Play (Dark-Hunter, #6; Were-Hunter, #2)

“There are some pains that run too deep for anything to absolve them. The best we can do is pick up the pieces and hope for the strength we need to keep going. (Acheron)
Is that what you do? (Tory)
No, I beat shit up – that helps even more. (Acheron)”
— Sherrilyn Kenyon, Acheron (Dark-Hunter, #15)

“The worst wounds, the deadliest of them, aren’t the ones people see on the outside. They’re the ones that make us bleed internally.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Infamous

“No one can ever make you feel inferior without your permission, Tory. Don’t give it to them. Realize that it’s their own insecurities that make them attack you and others. They’re so unhappy with themselves that the only way they can feel better is by making everyone as unhappy as they are. Don’t let those people steal your day, baby. You hold your head high and know that you have the one thing they can never take away from you. (Theo)
What’s that, Papa? (Tory)
My love. Your mother’s love and the love of your family and true friends. Your own self-respect and sense of purpose. Look at me, Torimou, people laugh at me all the time and say that I’m chasing rainbows. They told George Lucas that he was a fool for making Star Wars – they used to even call it Lucas’s Folly. Did he listen? No. And if he’d listened to them you wouldn’t have had your favorite movie made and think of how many people would never have heard the phrase ‘May the Force be With You.’ (Theo)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Acheron

“I see time away hasn’t made you any more charming. (Fang)
Oh, I can be charming. I just choose not to. People start to think you like them, then when you stab them in the back, they take it so personally. Really pisses me off. (Thorn)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Bad Moon Rising

“I can tell we’re going to get along like Batman and the Joker. (Fang)
Just remember one thing, world. I’m the best friend you’ll ever have or the last enemy you’ll ever make. (Thorn)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Bad Moon Rising

“Watch your back, wolf. There’s a pall over this place and the bears are racking up enemies faster than Wal-Mart rakes in sales. When the time comes, it’s going to get bloody. (Thorn)
I wouldn’t have it any other way. (Fang)
Don’t be so arrogant. Long before I was the debonair sophisticate standing in front of you, I was a warlord. I put more blood on my blade than Madame la Guillotine. The one thing all that battle taught me is that no one walks away without scars. No one. (Thorn)”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Bad Moon Rising

“Our lives are marked and shaped by our regrets. Things we all want to take back and can’t. In a perfect world, we would never hurt the ones we love or cause hurt to befall them. But the world isn’t perfect and neither are we.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Styxx

“People make their own reality. That was what Praxis had taught him years ago. A hundred people can witness the exact same event, and give two hundred and three different accountings of it.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Styxx

 

 

 

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THE DARK HUNTER SERIES BY SHERRILYN KENYON
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