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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love the Secret McQueen books
I absolutely love the Secret McQueen books. This is a short story that stands on it's own, and I think probably fits in between books 3 and 4. Secret is a vampire assassin, but is helping out the cops tracing a killer that seems to kill in seconds, leaves no witnesses, but loads of blood.

For his help, Holden forces Secret to make an interesting promise, which...
Published on 22 Mar 2012 by Lyn

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not the best of the Mqueen books
This is by far my least favourite of the Secret Mqueen books. It has a lot of our favourite characters in it but for me it just did not flow. Now you do need to accept that this is a 0.5 book which basically makes it a novella. You can expect progression in some of the characters relationships (specifically between Secret and her follow vamps) but the action is a bit...
Published on 22 Feb 2012 by Jennifer Lally


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love the Secret McQueen books, 22 Mar 2012
By 
Lyn (London, Great Britain) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Secret Santa: A Secret McQueen story (Kindle Edition)
I absolutely love the Secret McQueen books. This is a short story that stands on it's own, and I think probably fits in between books 3 and 4. Secret is a vampire assassin, but is helping out the cops tracing a killer that seems to kill in seconds, leaves no witnesses, but loads of blood.

For his help, Holden forces Secret to make an interesting promise, which makes me look forward future books when she will have to fulfill the promise.

I like the series as it's funny and witty, and unlike so many other vampire/werewolf books/heroines, she's not miserable, tortured or a martyr. She gets on with things, has a quick mouth (which sometimes lands her in trouble), but she's practical and knows when to fight and when to run.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A novella that brings Holden just a tad closer to Secret..., 11 Mar 2012
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Cheryl M-M (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Secret Santa: A Secret McQueen story (Kindle Edition)
A novella that fits in between A Bloody Good Secret: Secret McQueen, Book 2 and third Deep Dark Secret: Secret McQueen, Book 3full length novels. The holiday them plays second fiddle to the actual story, but also allows the reader to discover that little bit of Secret that craves what most people want, to be loved by others. Once again I thought it was a brilliant example of the genre with just enough humour, action and moving along of the character development. Each book and novella takes us one step closer when it comes to the main characters soul bonds and the implications of being bonded tomore than one man. I really enjoyed it and highly recommend the series.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hats off to Sierra Dean, a holiday UF novella can't get any better than this!, 4 Dec 2011
This review is from: Secret Santa: A Secret McQueen story (Kindle Edition)
I passionately love the Secret McQueen series, and as Christmas is my favourite time of the year I was excitedly looking forward to reading Secret Santa (Book #2.5 in the Secret McQueen series), and wow was I blown away!

Which let's be realistic was not a simple feat since my expectations of Sierra Dean's writing and the story kept growing exponentially with every further book, and yet Secret Santa floored me.

Once again Sierra Dean starts the story with a bang (she should seriously receive the best first lines/first scene award). Secret Santa resumes the story where Book #2 A Bloody Good Secret left off: Secret became the new tribunal leader and she has trouble adjusting to this new title and more administrative than active duty. She misses being the one in the fights, the thrill of the chase and taking matters into her own hands. But of course we don't have to wait long before Secret takes charge and starts investigating the latest mystery, and as always she can count on Holden her ex-Vampire-Council-contact/friend to have her back.

What I loved (but which doesn't come as a surprise since Sierra Dean made me used to this in The Secret Guide to Dating Monsters) is that despite the length restrictions Sierra Dean manages to give the reader a complex, fully developed, detailed and rich story even in a novella. I am usually left unsatisfied with novellas because the action/resolution is rushed, the characters and mystery are not developed enough, but none of this was the case with Secret Santa.

The mystery and chase were layered and kept the reader on their toes, while the bantering witty dialogue between the characters was stellar! The unique and so entertaining humour I come to associate with this series is back on full force:

Secret when worrying about meeting her boyfriend's mother:

"If I could kill a vampire Tribunal leader, I could handle Momma Alvarez, right?"

Secret about her kitten:

"With the tinsel gone, she took up her favorite hobby--attempted manslaughter. She weaved between my ankles while I walked, trying her damnedest to make me do a face plant into the Christmas tree."

Thanks to the evocative writing ("words got caught in a cold gust of air and were carried off unheard into the dark") Sierra Dean paints a vivid setting, be it festive, lit up down-town New York or abandoned creepy graveyards. (By the way Sierra Dean has a knack for creating the best creepy settings: first in Book #2 a falling apart old haunted house in an abandoned amusement park and now a Victorian graveyard full of old angel statues, gave me goosebumps just reading about them!)

I enjoyed that despite the quick resolution of the final fight, the explanation of the mystery was done intelligently, giving reason and some back story to the mystery.

When talking about the Secret McQueen story you must know that here you don't have a love triangle but a love.. I don't even know what since there are so many potential love interests for Secret, let me just show you the main contenders. First there is Lucas, billionaire werewolf king and classy gentleman (one of my favourite heroes, sadly he isn't much on the scene, and didn't make an appearance in Secret Santa either *frowns*), there is also Desmond, second in command werewolf lieutenant to Lucas, a playful and warm-hearted man, and then there is Holden, Secret's ex-contact-to-the-vampire-council and drop dead gorgeous intense vampire friend/ally whose chemistry with Secret makes my Kindle sizzle. Secret has been living with Desmond for the past six months, and yet despite their living arrangement and Secret saying she loves him, I'm not convinced. Somehow I find their relationship convenient, casual and shallow. I don't feel the intensity, both in heat and restraint that I do when Lucas deigns to come on scene or when Holden finally gets some screen time. In my opinion they both pack much more heat whenever they interact with Secret than Desmond, who I find adorable, but much more like a cute puppy.

Just to show you what I'm talking about, a Secret and Holden scene:

"Holden, will you please help me?" What I was thinking was more along the lines of Holden, if you don't agree to help me, there will be blood all over this sword before I even start hunting for fae.
"I will help you, because I would follow you to hell and back. But when this is over I need your word that you will stop ignoring this."
"I don't know what you want."
"I want you."

So I'm very much looking forward to seeing how this love square will evolve...

The ending was perfection itself! It was festive, heart-warming, sweet and still remained completely true to Secret. Hats off to Sierra Dean, a holiday UF novella can't get any better than this!

Verdict: Secret Santa reminded me once again why I looove the Secret McQueen series so much. It is witty, it is funny, full of action, sexiness and yummy heroes, and the kic***s heroine is simply one of a kind! If you love urban fantasy, you HAVE to read this novella for the holidays! I would think that writing a Christmas UF story is a contradiction in itself but Sierra Dean pulled it off! She gave such a festive and still kic***s story you will bite your nails but close the book with a smile feeling good about the world and craving that hot chocolate with marshmallows :-)

Plot: 10/10
Characters: 10/10
Ending: 10/10 - only one word: perfection!
Writing: 10/10
Cover: 8/10 - I know it's a holiday story, but I still have some problem picturing kickass Secret wearing a fluffy Santa hat...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Secret rides again., 1 Dec 2011
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This review is from: Secret Santa: A Secret McQueen story (Kindle Edition)
Another great story for Secret. I waited, although not altogether patiently, for this and I wasn't disappointed. Definitely a good page turner, in fact I read it in one sitting. (Much to the chargrin of family and friends; uncommunicative it was said). Really looking forward to the next book in the series.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Written in 2011, 2 July 2014
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This review is from: Secret Santa: A Secret McQueen story (Kindle Edition)
A great tale of death. kidnapping,a far and Secret McQueen and Handson coming to the rescue all at Christmas time.
This was so different from the norm.
Well done Sierra Dean 4Stars
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not the best of the Mqueen books, 22 Feb 2012
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This review is from: Secret Santa: A Secret McQueen story (Kindle Edition)
This is by far my least favourite of the Secret Mqueen books. It has a lot of our favourite characters in it but for me it just did not flow. Now you do need to accept that this is a 0.5 book which basically makes it a novella. You can expect progression in some of the characters relationships (specifically between Secret and her follow vamps) but the action is a bit light for me

I am all for character pieces, but this just felt like it could have been included in a main book Pugh I will concede that having the novellas means that you will not have to wait so long for the next installment, which has to be a good thing if, like me you are an impatient reader

If you are a die hard who just has to complete the series, or if you need your Secret fix then go for it, but don't feel that yah ethane it to enable to read the series
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