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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Slither by Bernadette Gardner

Slither by Bernadette Gardner
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (123 pgs)
Other: M/F, Anal Play
Rating: 4.5 Cherries
Reviewed by Viscaria

Rihana has seen a lot in five years working as a psychic for the NYPD, but the murder of a freelance reporter makes her question if she really wants to continue her law enforcement career.

The dark vibe she gets from this case is nothing new, but the main suspect, sexy, enigmatic tattoo artist Heath, leaves her heightened senses burning. She can read him like a book—and she can see his innocence but she can’t prove it. His feral sexual thoughts make her insane with need and her desire for him jeopardizes her job and the investigation.

When she learns the truth about the man who can strip her soul bare with a glance, will she give up everything she knows to flee with him to a safer world? Or will she become a psychic killer in order to destroy a ruthless assassin and put an end to her lover’s exile?

I have to admit, the first reason I requested this book for review was the cover. I love the cover! The second reason was that I have a serious thing for tattoos… guys who have them, guys who give them, the whole process… just a thing for tattoos. Imagine my surprise when I looked at the author and realized this book is the sequel to another book I just loved by Bernadette Gardner!

Slither picks up where Skin left off. I was so happy to see Heath get his story. When I read the first book I wondered how Heath would deal with finding his own mate. I wanted to see him get his… comeuppance. LOL. Heath is the kind of hero that you sometimes want to slap even as you want to jump into his arms. He seems too self-assured and you wonder if he really does know what he’s doing or if he’s faking it. I loved watching him twist and turn and fall head over heels for a woman who has some major issues he’s going to have to deal with if he wants to keep her in his life. It was great fun, not to mention hot and sweaty, to witness his techniques to help Rihana… relax.

Rihana was an interesting heroine. While not anything that hasn’t been seen before, I still really liked her as a heroine. The fact that she works in a world of mostly men who have the “I cant’ see it so I don’t believe it” attitude made for interesting reading that was definitely believable, despite paranormal elements. I really liked that she wasn’t willing to just accept things at face value… instead she dealt with her own intuition and powers and the facts in front of her. Even with her own powers, Rihana’s disbelief was believable, and I found myself relating quite well to her and her reactions. I actually loved getting to see Makena and Darq from Skin and got quite a kick out of Rihana’s reaction to their romance. Her disbelief and Makena’s peace were almost comical in their contrast. All in all, Rihana was an enjoyable and completely relatable heroine that I was glad to get to know better.

While this story was a short one, like the previous Skin, and not really a stand-alone tale, I was still impressed with how much information was passed along without making it into an information dump. The story was well-balanced with the action, backstory and heat that seems to be so much a part of Ms. Gardner’s writing style. My only complaint? I wasn’t ready for the story to end - even though everything in this tale was tied up and handled in a way that didn’t seem rushed, I still wanted to see more of these characters, as well as Makena and Darq. I guess since the author ended it in such a way as to make this reader wonder if there might be more books possible in this story line, I’ll just have to cross my fingers and hope… Well, and read Slither and Skin again a few more times each so I never have to let the characters go.

This is another book by Ms. Gardner that is going on my keeper shelf. If you’re looking for a unique novella with compelling characters, action, adventure and steamy hot sexual adventures in a tattoo shop, then this is the book for you.

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