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on 8 October 2013
The Jessica McClain series has been a favourite of mine since Full Blooded arrived in September 2012, it's the urban fantasy series if you like full on action packed tension with alpha wolves, witches and vamps added into the mix. Cold Blooded, the newest instalment out today proudly carries on that tradition of action galore which again had me gnawing my fingernails to the bone.

My main request after devouring Hot Blooded was that I wanted more "quality" Rourke and Jessica time. Cold Blooded absolutely delivers this. And it is scorching HAWT! Rourke really grew on me during Hot Blooded and I can safely say I'm in full blown love with him now. He has some of the best lines in Cold Blooded:

"He lowered his mouth against my ear and rasped, "I haven't denied myself anything in a thousand years. Resisting you is taking every ounce of everything I've got. My beast is clawing me from the inside out, fighting to make this official. All I can think about is throwing you down on the grass and taking you from every angle I possibly can. Repeatedly"

*Gulp* see what I mean? His absolute love for Jessica shines through everything he does in Cold Blooded, his need to bond with Jessica coupled with that protective mate thing he had going on was so deliciously good:

"Rourke broke the kiss and hovered over me anxiously, his eyes filled with the same longing as mine. "I haven't cared about another living soul in longer than I can remember. I want this to be exactly right."

Since the first instalment Full Blooded was released I've been desperately wanting to find out exactly what kind of shifter Rourke actually is. It's been hinted previously that Rourke is very, very old and close to godhood which Jessica explains is the ultimate mix of power and immortality for a supernatural creature. We finally find out exactly what Rourke is, and I loved it, I might have had to google it, but I loved it! He's clearly very different from the normal run of the mill shifter but it works because Jessica is no ordinary wolf shifter either. So bonus points for originality there!

I've come to expect a tonne of fast paced action from this series and Cold Blooded delivers this in spades to the point I actually felt quite tense reading it! Not only is Jessica still figuring out her "old soul" wolf and untapped powers, she has to deal with the threat of sorcerers working with demons who want to steal her life force and a hostile vampire queen who's protection she needs. Thank goodness for helpful ghosts, witches with spelled AK-47s and her beloved pack because Jessica is as always really up against it throughout.

It's a given that I'll be reading Jessica McClain #4 Red Blooded when it's released in 2014 as I absolutely love this series. Cold Blooded's cliff hanger-ish ending means further adventures and rescue missions for Jessica and her allies. I really can't wait to see more of Ray the ex-human cop and ex-pain in Jessica's ass, his job title has changed dramatically and has left me very intrigued and I'm also on the lookout for some other wolf romances in Jessica's pack. Honestly, I cannot wait. 5 out of 5.
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on 30 July 2014
After finishing the second book in the Jessica McClain series and waiting with baited breath (oh about three seconds) I hastily dived into book three, Cold Blooded, and for newbies to the series there's quite a bit to catch up on but Carlson helpfully drops in reminders of the action throughout the first few chapters. But for those who took time between reads or are new to the series and starting with this one, here's a recap.
SPOLIERS AHEAD: Jessica McClain is the only female werewolf in an all male werewolf pack. She was never supposed to change, it wasn't supposed to be possible but when she hit 26 years old, change she did, causing uproar in the supernatural community. A pack of wolves led by evil witch/goddess Selene tried to kidnap Jessica, but she is dragged off to hide in a cabin with werecat assassin Rourke, and to her shock, Rourke is her true mate. By the time the second book starts, Rourke has been captured by the temporarily defeated Selene and Jessica must set out to rescue him, along with her brother Tyler, friend Danny, human cop Ray who poked his nose into her business to often, and too vamps loaned to her by the Vampire Queen in exchange for a 'favour' at a later date. By the time the third book arrives, werewolf James has gone AWOL, Jess is reunited with her mate, but a new problem presents itself as secretary and witch Marcy has disappeared. Caught up so far? Great! Then I'll begin.
Jessica and her entourage are being hunted by the demons so she can appear in the 'Underworld Court'. With very few options, they head for New Orleans to the Vampire Queen, with newly converted Ray in tow. Jessica has a debt to repay to the Queen for her help with the two vamps in the previous book. As with the two previous novels, Carlson's voice as Jessica is strong and distinctive, sarcastic and witty. She gathers followers and loyal soldiers everywhere she goes because of this strength of character. Unfortunately for her enemies, they are constantly underestimating her.
As for the vampires, they're not sparkly and they're certainly not very humane, even if Naomi and Ray show more personality than others. It's a refreshing change to read of nasty vampires again, after they've been domesticated in so many ways in the past.
As is typical of this series, it is action packed and great fun with surprises along the way, and this novel also ends with a humdinger of a cliff hanger, leaving the reader waiting with baited breath for the fourth instalment.
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on 3 April 2014
For this review and more visit my blog The Accidental Reader

This book has a lot of running around, a lot of things happening. And I think a war is coming soon. The demons wants Jessica, other sects wants Jessica. Some sects support Jessica. And it all comes back to the vampire queen.

Basically, the last book has left us with a warning regarding the underworld, and here Jessica tries to figure out what she should do while dealing with one missing friend, one angry witch, some crazy stupid dudes, a father that might just die if no one is careful, a new born (very hungry and very angry) vampire, one plotting vampire queen and one Hotter than Hot, absolutely and McSteamy and McDreamy all rolled into one in the form of a mate.

Jessica and Rourke are getting to know each other better, they both know they have lots of work to do- Jessica is a moving target, she's powerful but young and Rourke is much older than her and had been alone for a long time. Which is why they have lots of compromising to do- Rourke finds the tender balance between protecting Jessica and trusting her to fend for herself? Jessica realizes that every decision she makes affects them both and most often consults him and learn from his experience.

I have to admit, these characters are quite growing on me and I can't wait for the next book.

I'm willing to bribe whoever I need in order to get my hands on an early version of the next book.

A review copy was kindly provided by Orbit through NetGalley. Thank you!
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on 14 October 2013
I absolutely LOVE this series. Each book keeps getting better and better!!!!! I can't wait for the next book to be released! If you haven't picked up this series yet I'd HIGHLY recommend that you do, you will not regret it! Cold Blooded picks up where the last book Hot Blooded ended and continues at a fast pace keeping you on the edge of you seat! It is packed with adventure and there is NEVER any boring moments. I am currently rereading the books for my 3rd time and i can honestly say they never get tiresome.
I wont go into any detail as I don't want to ruin the books. Do your self a favour and read this series!!!
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on 11 October 2013
I could go on forever about how much I am loving this series and this book is no exception. It is truly awesome urban fantasy, right at the top for me in terms of writing, characters and plot, truly it's one of the best books I have read this year.

You have to read these books in order otherwise you will be totally lost, this one starts barely a second after the end of Hot Blooded with a running jump and never really stops. There is a constant stream of plot and action. Jessica takes on the vampires this time and they are one of the most scheming and manipulative bunch of supernaturals I have come across. Along for the ride with her is Rourke (sigh), the mate that she rescued from goddess Selene in Hot Blooded. We find out a lot more about him and his past and he is perfect in every way for Jessica. We also have a few other familiar faces, Danny and Tyler the werewolves, Naomi the vampire and Ray. Oh Ray, I just love where the story is going with him, I did so not see that coming, and I'm loving the fact that I am going from hating him in book 1 to grudging respect in book 2 and now, well I think he's great! We don't see as much of James and Marcy but they are integral to the plot, and we are introduced to the witches as a group, which have me very intrigued and i would love to see more of them in future.

Jessica's journey takes place over just a few short days where she is constantly on the run and testing out her powers. She is turning out to be one powerful wolf and what I love about her is that as the stories progress she learns and adapts to the world around her. No making the same stupid mistake twice for her unlike many urban fantasy books. She is no nonsense and practical but at the same fiercely loyal and willing to go to any lengths to protect the ones she loves. Her support network is growing and intriguing and I am so looking forward to be along for the ride to see how the supernatural world in these books is changing with the presence and actions of Jessica, the she wolf of the prophecy. I really want to know what's in that prophecy!

If you like urban fantasy, you'll love this. I used to sit firmly on team vampire ( :-) ) but this book has converted me, I'm on team Jessica. If you're not sure, go for it, anyone who appreciates a good story is in for a treat.
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on 10 October 2013
This is book 3 so there may be spoilers from the other 2. Ive tried to keep it spoiler free but I may unintentionally reveal something!

Cold Blooded can be summed up in one word, Ah-Freakin-Mazing!!!! After the ending of book 2 I couldn't wait to read this. It has fast become one of my favourite series.

This book starts with a bang, literally!!! The sorcerers have created an orb that can track Jessicas signature. It finds her and she is lucky to escape with her life. The witches take her to their compound and while there Jessica learns that her father is in terrible danger and if she doesnt get to him soon he will die. She also learns that Ray is her fathers only hope. The witches give her a spelled car that will mask her as long as she is inside. Both herself and Rourke have to go to the cabin in the woods to meet up with Naomi and Ray. Ray has made the transition but he is different than any other Vampire. Jessica convinces him to go with her and try and save her dad. She makes it to the Vamp Queens compound and what follows is an insane roller-coaster ride!!

Every book in this series so far seems to be getting better and better. When I was reading this I was in a constant state of nervousness and tenseness!! I wanted to devour it but with kids I had to be content with reading whenever I could.

Jessica is as kick ass as ever and she is still one of my all time favourite characters. She is snarky, tough but so fair with the other supernaturals. I was so glad to see more of her and Rourke together in this. They needed the "me" time to cement their bond and build their relationship.

We finally find out what kind of cat Rourke is and its awesome!! He is so powerful and his love for Jessica shines through. His mate bond makes him try his hardest to protect Jessica but he knows that that is useless, she is well able to look after herself and she is in constant peril. Poor Jessica never gets a break!!!

I loved the fact that most of the sects are intermingling and falling for different species, wolf and cat, wolf and witch and is there a wolf and vamp gonna happen???

I love Ray. He is such a pain in the ass but is also so brave and true. Him and Jessica get so snarky with each other but you can tell he will do anything to protect people. He is a true cop at heart. His journey is interesting and intriguing. I've never read of anything like him before and look forward to seeing him in the next book.

Amanda Carlson can sure write a book. She threw in new elements that I loved, like what The Vamp Queen is, Ray and the feral wolves. She is now on my automatic buy list!!!

So yay, overall, this book rocked!! Its an action packed, edge of your seat, nail biter book!! It has every supernatural being, sorcerers, demons, vampires, witches and wolves. It even has witches with spelled guns. The only down side is I have to wait till next year for the next one!!!
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on 10 October 2013
The storyline picks straight up from where we left book two.... Jessica gets home from rescuing Rourke to find that Marcy has been kidnapped by Sorcerers and that James has gone rogue in an attempt to find her, Tally, the leader of the Witches places the responsibility of finding her on Jess. Jess was always going to look for her Bff anyway but that becomes a different story when Jess becomes the hunted and on finding that Marcy isn't as defenceless as people assume she is... it all becomes about keeping Jess out of the Sorcerers clutches. After receiving some vital `information' & a couple of pitstops, Jess decides to head to the Vampire Coterie in New Orleans to seek protection & fulfil the debt to their Queen Eudoxia early.....that is if she can make it in one piece.... And that's just the half of it!
This was yet another spectacular book in the Jessica McClain series. I am constantly wowed by this series and even though we are only at book 3, it is definitely established as one of my most favourite series EVER! I love Jess, she is such a great character, she is so fearless and willing to take risks, further evidence is again in this as she puts herself on the line, time & time again. I love her relationship with Rourke, love the whole mating situation and was sooooo grateful they got to be together in this book because we didn't see much of him until the end of book two. They have great chemistry, the sizzle right off the page and I don't think I'm alone when I got 27% in and breathed the word ...finally. Rourke is totally swoon-worthy & smoking hot!!! Oh and we eventually find out what he is !!! and it's awesome!!!
It's not often when you read a book that you are interested in & care about every single character, wanting not only Jess & Rourke's story but everyone elses (I want Marcy & James story at the minute).
The storyline was great, it is all action, all of the time and just the way I like them. Jess is really causing a stir in the supernatural world, unintentionally causing waves of unrest & change - which I love! - bringing out all of the supernaturals who want to use her for some reason or other and while some a forthright in what they want, others..not so much. It's so hard to know who to trust in these books, there is always some hidden agenda or misdirection going on and that drags you into the story so much, keeps your interest & holds it all of the way through... its exciting, it's magical, it's violent, it's romantic, it's hot and as always I'm left counting the days for more.
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on 8 October 2013
At 14% my initial thoughts were "I've Slipped straight back into this book and its characters. By 55% "It's gripping stuff." By 65% "Jessica is one heck of a kick butt female character!"
Upon finishing this book my first thoughts were "Wow brilliant!!! Easily as good as the Women Of The Otherworld Series by Kelley Armstrong and I never thought I would be saying that about any series of books!"

I received an e-copy of this book early via Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
So I like the cover as it really fits along with the rest of the covers in the series so far. Again I like the murky blue colour, which suggests night time. The theme of having the moon on the cover once again works well. The author quote by Karen Chance about the previous book is definitely a positive even though one of my pet hates is Author Quotes on front covers! What I do love though is a byline and this book has a great byline "Stalk The Night" and it's fitting as that is what Jessica does a lot in this book! Would the cover make me pick the book up from a book store shelf? Yes!
So now to the book . . . Jessica arrives back after her last escapade in Hot Blooded, only to find that her best friend and employee Marcy has been kidnapped, so that lands Jessica a problem as Mary's Aunt is not too pleased and is a very powerful witch. A witch that it would be advisable to keep on the right side of! Jessica's father's right hand man, James has gone off alone somewhere too, and there's even bigger trouble with a rogue breakaway pack forming and planning on taking on Jessica's father's pack. The good thing about being back, is that Rourke is with Jessica so they get a little private time eventually to make their life-mate bond.
Poor Jessica always seems to be getting into scrapes and sticky situations and this book is no different. there is plenty of action, and danger for Jessica! The Sorcerer's join forces with the Demons who want Jessica. It seems everyone is out for Jessica's blood and they don't seem so bothered whether or not she is alive or dead either.
Some unlikely alliances are made for the fight in this book. As is becoming usual the Vampire Queen Eudoxia is at the centre of things, though we learn quite a few secrets about the Vampire Queen too. I really don't want to say much more about what happens as I think you should discover that yourselves by reading this brilliant book!
I really do love how Amanda Carlson writes, her descriptions, her fight scenes and the characters, wow! Of course my favourite character is Jessica, a real kick butt woman! Her relationship with Rourke is red hot and he sound like the. perfect. man. doesn't he? I have also, and I know this may sound kind of odd, I've warmed to Naomi even more. I think how Ray's character has evolved and how he has been changed into a vampire and . . . .well you'll find out what else when you read the book!
So did I enjoy the book?Enjoyed it? I loved it! Would I recommend the book? Yes, I would recommend the book and the whole series.I especially recommend this series to those who have read and loved the Women Of The Otherworld Series by Kelley Armstrong, This series really is as good as Kelley Armstrong's and I never thought I'd ever say that after reading those books. Would read another a book in this series? Oh YES! I'd read Bk#4 or a novella right now if there was one available. Would I read other books by Amanda Carlson? as I love her style of writing as well as the Jessica McClain Series the answer to that would have to be a big Yes please!

I love the humour that is mixed into this book in generous perfectly placed areas of the book! The following quote is a great example:

"Alana staggered like a drunk and laughed like a possessed cartoon character, she sounded like Woody Woodpecker on acid"
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on 13 October 2013
If you haven't picked up this series yet I'd highly recommend that you do! I did not want to put the book down, it picks up where the last book ended and continues at a fast pace! A real page turner with so much happening! Jess is really shaking things up in her world and she's not done yet. Can't say much cause I don't want to give any spoilers that would ruin the book for those who haven't read it yet!
Ray has survived his transition but he's not exactly normal and I can't wait to explore that further. We got to learn a surprising tid-bit about the vampire queen that very very few know and to learn exactly what kind off shifter Rourke is. We learned what the sorcerer's want from Jess and met some new characters, some of whom I liked and some of whom I'd like to slap!
It ended on a real cliff-hanger that has me dying to get the next book to see what happens next and how they resolve the cliff-hangar ending! If you've read the first two books in the series, you won't be disappointed and if you haven't read the series yet, you need to!
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Ah, Jessica's back and to be honest I couldn't wait to see what Amanda would do with her after the epic struggles that have gone before. Needless to say the battle sequences within are more than satisfying, the inter-supernatural arguments wonderful and when backed with some cracking twists all round gives the reader a rollercoaster thrill ride that they'll find hard to put down.

Back this up with great prose and of course an overall arc plot that will have consequences further down the line all round generates something that was a real pleasure to sit down with. The only downside to this book, was that I did feel a little cheated at not getting to see the rescue within. Perhaps that might be a book that Amanda would like to write at a later date and one to help flesh out her world a little more. That said though, you really should try her as for me, she's absolutely fab.
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