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Friday, May 20, 2011

Virgin by Cheryl Brooks

Virgin by Cheryl Brooks
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Action/Adventure
Length: Full Length (356 pgs)
Other: M/F, F/M/F, M/M, Ménage, Voyeurism
Rating: 5 Cherries
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

Zetithians have a feline gene that gives the males remarkable sexual prowess. Refugee Dax is no exception—but as a virgin, he has no idea how to use it. His fumbling attempts at romance fail to tempt the beautiful Ava, but he is determined to learn the art of love. Let the seduction begin...

Virgin blew me away with its entertaining story line, exciting possibilities and more purr-fectly charming Zetithians for fans to swoon over. Ms. Brooks might have heard me squealing in delight when I found out that Virgin is a continuation of the series that I fell in love with. I’m pretty sure I was that loud in my excitement. This is most definitely a standalone read because it picks up with one of the survivors of that ship at the end of Hero. I met a lot of new and fascinating characters and I commend the author and her creative talents.

What am I referring to? Every time the author introduces a new character, he or she appears so naturally and provides ample opportunities for the hero and heroine through their interactions with them to grow, and for the plot to move forward. Another thing with Ms. Brooks’ writing is her sense of humor. If her characters can pull off a joke or pun or have dialogue scenes with witticisms that make a reader roll on the floor, the author finds every one of them and uses them to perfection. In this latest book, her sense of fun and the ridiculous is as sharp as ever. All someone has to do is mention Ms. Brooks’ name and I break out into a grin.

When the book starts, a reader meets the heroine, Ava, first. I got the biggest kick out of her but don’t let her anywhere near your frying pans. She’s a woman with smokin’ hot passions and I’m not talking about her cooking. She’s courageous, clever, quick on her feet and even more alien than the past heroines in the series. I am in love with her hair. Kudos to the author for making something so ordinary into the most amusing, unique and captivating feature a heroine has ever had. It is a brilliant stroke of genius and is another testimony to Ms. Brooks’ vivid imagination.

Dax is one of the newly found Zetithians and he’s so dreamy. I really enjoyed reading about his falling in love and how he goes about it. It’s not perfect and that made it all the more special. I also enjoyed the role he ends up playing. It was sort of mystical and very heroic. What makes it even better? He wasn’t doing it for the glory but something a lot more basic and romantic, love. My favorite description of him comes from Ava: “He was a big purring kitten of a man…” How can a reader not fall in love with him too?

I had an absolute blast with the secondary characters. Waroun constantly gave me the giggles, Kots was creepy and totally cool, Threldigan is a character I’d love to know more about, and Quinn was a character with a surprising bit of depth, after he took a bath.

Remember I mentioned fun dialogue? This line had me in stitches and is just a small example of the fun that is in store for readers throughout the entire book. “ want to get dinner over with so you can get back to the ship and play snuggle bunnies with Super Kitten.” There are so many moments of wonderful repartee between Dax, Ava and the other characters that it made reading this story a breeze. I never knew who was going to say what and it guaranteed my absolute focus on the story. I didn’t want to miss a thing.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t tease readers with the hot factor in the book. Yes, the powerful snard is back but I also think the author challenged herself a bit with some of the physical relationship scenes this time around. It’s really eyebrow raising and quite erotic and yet even in the midst of all those increased pheromones, some scenes get tickled with the brush of humor to an enjoyable degree. I loved it!

It’s not all purrs, bites and sex in trees; there are some seriously nasty villains chasing Dax and Ava. At one point I thought there was one group but as I read I figured out that there were two factions chasing my new favorite hero and heroine and I didn’t know which group was worse and who was going to get to them first. It was a great bit of writing because it kept me on the edge of my seat. I liked the idea that things the main characters thought they knew were actually mistruths and the revelations were gripping. The confrontation was full of action and crisp writing and I felt like I was right in the thick of it. It’s another strong point in this book’s favor.

Virgin is high caliber entertainment from beginning to end – it hit all my happy buttons and I couldn’t put it down. I continue to be amazed as to the quality and vibrant imagery painted within its pages, whether it be flora, fauna or characters. Ms. Brooks has consistently written well thought out intricate stories that amuse and entertain and Virgin continues the trend. It’s been an awesome reading experience and I am so glad the author has more coming out. I simply can’t get enough of that snard!


Nancy Bristow said...

Fabulous review of VIRGIN and I couldn't agree more:)

I had the opportunity to read an ARC (Advanced Reading Copy) but will be purchasing a keeper copy to join the rest of her series on my shelf. Cheryl's humor + hot sex + vivid imagination make her books thoroughly entertaining reads. In every book I also find those humorous nuggets that simply crack me up...out loud. Cheryl has a gift.

diva donna said...

I'm also a true fan of this series. I totally agree with your comments about VIRGIN. Cheryl amazes me each and every time she adds a new character. Her imagination is unsurpassed. She writes fun, sexy, adventurous stories you won't soon forget. This is a keeper. I too read a ARC version. And need to purchase a reread it again and again.

Suzy said...

Well said!! I,too, am a huge fan of Cheryl Brooks' Cat Star books, and can't wait to get my hands on my copy of VIRGIN!! The series has just gotten better and better as it's grown, and I hope we'll all be able to look forward to many more books in this Zetithian Universe!!
Read it for the sex and humor, and be amazed by the depth of the story and characters!