Spencer Cohen, by N.R. Walker
Series: Spencer Cohen, Book One
Release Date: February 18, 2016
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Buy Link: Amazon.com
Blind Faith, by N.R. Walker
Series: Blind Faith, Book 1
Publisher: Self-Published (February 2013)
Page Count: 161 pages
Genre: Gay (M/M) Romance
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Buy Links: Amazon
I’d been meaning to read Blind Faith for a while, since I’ve loved N.R.’s other books so much (especially her Cronin’s Key trilogy!), so when it was free on Amazon for a short time, I went ahead and grabbed it. Now I’m wondering why I waited so long to read it!
Starting a new job in a new town, veterinarian Carter Reece, makes a house call to a very special client.
Arrogant, moody and totally gorgeous, Isaac Brannigan has been blind since he was eight. After the death of his guide dog and best friend, Rosie, his partnership with his new guide dog, Brady, isn’t going well.
Carter tries to help both man and canine through this initiation phase, but just who is leading who?
Okay, the summary doesn’t do this justice at all. Carter is a vet, so he connects better with animals than with people. When he first meets Isaac, he’s not particularly impressed by the human, whose wild mood swings and biting sarcasm help him keep a wall between him and the rest of the world. But he is impressed with Brady, Isaac’s guide dog, who is extremely well-behaved… but clearly not loved by his owner.
I love the slow-build friendship between Carter and Isaac. Isaac doesn’t want to let anyone get close; he’s been blind most of his life, but uses his blindness as an excuse to remain distant. Carter, though, isn’t willing to take any of Isaac’s crap!
“You criticize me for judging people, Isaac, yet you think you can judge me.” (Kindle Loc. 769)
As their friendship turns into something more, Carter is able to get Isaac to relax, and they grow closer. Carter gets Isaac to leave his comfort zone more and more, and they learn more about each other. But no matter how hard Carter tries, he can’t get Isaac to connect with Brady. In fact, mentioning it is enough to send Isaac into an icy-cold rage. Isaac is terrified of losing anything or anyone important to him, it turns out.
And there it was. His temper. His I’ll-hurt-you-before-you-can-hurt-me tactic. (Kindle Loc. 1225)
My favorite part of this novel was the patience Carter has with Isaac. It’s not Isaac’s blindness that is causing any potential frustration, but his inability to trust, and his fear of loss. Carter is willing to go at Isaac’s pace, carefully shifting them from business acquaintances to friends, and eventually to lovers.
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Cronin’s Key III, by N.R. Walker (Cronin’s Key Trilogy)
Publisher: BlueHeart Press (September 18, 2015)
Word Count: approx. 58,800 words
Genre: Gay (M/M) Paranormal/Fantasy, Romance
Welcome to the blog tour stop for Cronin’s Key III on Just Love! I’m a huge fan of this series, so I’m incredibly excited to be hosting a tour stop for the final book of this awesome trilogy. Keep reading for an exclusive excerpt from the book, as well as an amazing giveaway!
History isn’t always what it seems…
Twelve months after his change, Alec MacAidan is still getting used to his many vampire talents. While most vampires would give anything to have more than one supernatural power, Alec craves nothing more than peace and time alone with Cronin. But when Alec meets entities from outside this realm, he’s left powerless in their presence.
Zoan are half-lycan, half-dragon creatures that have slipped through time and reality, seemingly undetected by man and vampire. Or have they? They bear an uncanny resemblance to gargoyles, leaving Alec’s view on all things weird to get a whole lot weirder.
This new quest leads Alec, Cronin, and their band of friends to Paris, Rome, and Moscow, where they learn that gargoyles aren’t simply statues on walls. In the underground pits beneath churches all over the world, Alec discovers the Key’s true destiny. Facing the Zoan might take every talent he has. And he may need help from the dead to get them all out alive.
Cronin’s Key III, by N.R. Walker (Cronin’s Key Trilogy)
Publisher: Self-published (September 18, 2015)
Page Count: 193 pages
Genre: Gay (M/M) Paranormal/Horror, Romance
Rating: 4 out of 5
* I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review. *
This is the conclusion to the Cronin’s Key trilogy, so you should definitely read the first two before starting this one. I love this series; it’s definitely a guilty pleasure, because it’s a bit ridiculous and a lot of fun.
Alec really is a bit too perfect in many ways; as a human, he was a Detective with the NYPD, attractive and talented… and with a photographic memory that helped him advance in his job. As a vampire, he’s the fated one, a Key with immense power and every Talent ever known to vampire history. But in this book, he finds an enemy who has powers he can’t affect, and suddenly things aren’t so perfect anymore.
I really liked this concept of a balance between light and dark. It’s very Harry Potter-and-Voldemort… they exist to balance each other.
As always, Walker brings in mythology and historical facts and adds a paranormal twist to make them fit this world. She actually ties the mythology together for all three books (which means Egyptians, Genghis Khan, and now the Catholic Church) in a way that would make any conspiracy theorist proud.
“This is a hill or a mound, yes? I couldn’t help but wonder if, ten thousand years ago when it was built, if it was a pyramid.” (PDF page 37)
I think Cronin must be the most patient husband ever, though. I mean, Alec starts off as a human with crazy emotional back-and-forths, and then almost gets himself and everyone else killed, and kind of disrupts everything. It’s true love, soulmates, etc, but Cronin’s basically freaking out for the entire book because Alec is about to get himself killed (again).
Final conclusion: this series is awesome and ridiculous and I love it. Where else are you going to vampire mummies, vampire Genghis Khan, evil time-controlling gargoyles, and a bunch of scorching hot gay vampire sex? It’s cheesier than a bag of Cheetos, but it’s also a blast to read, and I was making grabby hands at my computer screen when I saw this third book announced.
A very fun series from start to finish. If you want a fun paranormal romance series to read, something you don’t have to take seriously, then you should definitely check this trilogy out!
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There’s something to be said for a novel that’s fun, easy to read, and has a great ratio of hot sex and absurd plot. It’s like candy for your brain, and I devoured Walker’s latest in the Cronin’s Key trilogy like a kid with a chocolate bar. Don’t go looking here for high literature and deep, meaningful conversations about life; this is a book where vampires battle Genghis Khan and an army of terracotta soldiers in modern day New York City (and still find time in the bedroom, of course).
Don’t worry, it’s not as bad as it sounds. In fact, it’s delightful. If you can suspend disbelief, you’ll find almost 200 pages of crazy action, vague prophecies, hot vampire sex, and twisted history, all well-written.