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Shards of Crimson Mass Market Paperback – Jan 1 2007


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: Love Spell (2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0505527103
  • ISBN-13: 978-0505527103
  • Product Dimensions: 2.7 x 10.8 x 17.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 159 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #628,245 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Mass Market Paperback
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I thought all four stories were pretty good. Each one had characters that were secondary characters in the other novels in the series. Each one different, but all had action, inner turmoils and excellent, erotic love scenes.

A Time to Howl by Liz Maverick: I thought this was great. Even when it started out almost as `poor little rich girl', Tajo and Gia overcome their differences and learn about one another. What started out as a spur of the moment kidnapping turns into an excellent love story. I was disappointed, though, but not because of the story. I want Jill and Marius! Please, oh please, Ms. Maverick. I need Jill and Marius. By ending their torment you'll be ending mine. Right at the beginning, the page just before the title page, Liz wrote: "To the fans waiting for Jill and Marius ... we'll get there." Oh, I hope it's soon. This novel had been published in January 2007. Please! The suspense is killing me here! Rating: 4 stars

DX by Carolyn Jewel: Pretty good action and plot, but I found DX/Jaden to be a little overbearing. While I felt the characters were attracted to each other, I didn't find the basis as to why Hell would become Jaden's mate, just because. I didn't feel the connection strong enough. While I know that there was a reason for it, I didn't feel it was enough. Not bad, but not the greatest. Rating: 3 stars

School Bites by Jade Lee: This one was delightful! I really liked how Toni and John fumbled with each other, turned to each other, trusted each other, helped one another. Each one strong in their beliefs, even when they change. I thought the story was a great change to the usual fighting and will to survive. The had a point to push across and I loved how that played out in the story.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 11 reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
A varied collection for fans of the Crimson City series March 4 2007
By Helen Hancox - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Crimson City series, created by Liz Maverick, is set in Los Angeles in the future when humans share the city with Vampires, Werewolves, Mechs and Demons. "Shards Of Crimson" has four short stories by Liz Maverick, Patti O'Shea, Carolyn Jewel and Jade Lee set within the Crimson City world and focusing on secondary characters from the earlier books. It's not necessary to have read any of the full-length novels to enjoy these stories but it can help to understand the background setting and some of the characters if you have.

"A Time To Howl" by Liz Maverick is the first story and it covers the Rogues, a breakaway group from the main power structures of the city, comprising a werewolf Tajo, vampire Hayden and two humans Jill and Bridget. They work as mercenaries but find that they have been set up, when watching the main vampire headquarters, as someone tries to kill a princess of the Werewolves, Gia, who is about to be given as bride to one of the vampires. Tajo the Werewolf ends up taking her hostage to keep her safe until they find who is trying to kill her. Of course Stockholm Syndrome does its work and although Tajo is a rough and ready man and not fit for a princess nature takes its course and the pair of them have to face up to the vampires.

Readers of this story would probably benefit from having read "Crimson Rogue" by Maverick as there are a lot of characters whose backstory we never quite fully understand. Although a good read with some moments of action there are also some unlikely plot devices and the relationship between the protagonists seems rather one-dimensional.

"DX" by Carolyn Jewel was a very different story, focusing on Hell Marshall, recently sacked from her job at Internal Operations in Crimson City following her relationship with a vampire, Tuan Ng. Hell is brought back to the team on a one-off basis to investigate a demon killing - the demon (the most dangerous kind, a Bak-Faru) almost killed Tuan and as Hell knows Tuan it is thought she will have most success with the investigation. She's partnered with Agent Jaden Lightfeather and very quickly their hormones start flying. However it soon becomes apparent that enemy and friend are somewhat confused and Hell has to decide who to trust - whether an evil demon can in fact be safer and more trustworthy than a friend.

This story had some interesting events and the underlying themes of the nature of trust and evil gave this story more depth. Hell knows that the hero has evil in him, she senses it, and yet she can also tell that he will protect her - it's unclear whether she's actually sold out for a handsome face and whether she will be happy with her future life but the tensions within the story make it a fun ride. This story worked well as a stand-alone and could be read without knowing any of the other Crimson City series as all necessary backstory is woven into the narration. It's an enjoyable read and very different from the preceding book in the collection.

The third book, "School Bites" by Jade Lee, was a particularly good contribution. Toni Freedman is a schoolteacher at a Middle School in Crimson City but her whole life is turned upside down when trying to break up a student fight. She is accidentally bitten by a young boy who has turned werewolf for the first time. Although applying the antidote it soon becomes clear that it hasn't worked and the school principal, John Wong, takes her home - getting rather more than he had bargained for in the process. Wong tries to train Toni in how to deal with being a werewolf - he is a Druid and has some skills in helping werewolves to keep control of their natures - but there is a definite deadline; if she doesn't show up at school on Monday everyone will know that she's a werewolf and she will lose her job. But things aren't as easy as they seem and when Toni returns to the school the secret is out - but it's not just her secret. Toni learns a great deal more about her fellow-teachers and students and what the school is actually about, as well as learning what it means to be a feared minority.

The themes of this story, although about otherworldly creatures, relate just as well to our world and that is part of the strength of this tale. ExcIusion, lack of acceptance and fear of otherness are all things that Toni faces, along with her doubts about her own strength and control. We meet the two main characters in the full-length novel "A Taste Of Crimson", Keeli and Michael, but this story works very well without any background knowledge of the series. It's a good read with some interesting points but may have benefited from being longer so that Toni's relationships with her school children, with Wong and with the werewolf community of which she is now a part could have been more deeply explored.

The final story is "Dark Awakening" by Patti O'Shea and is significantly shorter than the rest. It follows Kimi Noguchi, a young lady who has a crush on Nic, a demon and the half-brother of her cousin Mika. Nic seems to be avoiding her but she discovers eventually that he has been warned off her. Kimi is aware that she is a kijo, a special type of human and that she will gain some extra powers through training, but she doesn't realise that being a kijo is dangerous for her. At this stage of her life a demon could strip her of her powers - and Augustin, a Bak-Faru demon, is planning to do just that. Kimi enlists Nic's help to protect her from the demon but how can he do so when Augustin has already killed Nic's father and bested the son?

This was an enjoyable little story about the differences between humans and demons and the evil nature of some demons. Nic is aware that he could be dangerous to his soulmate as well and has been avoiding her to keep her safe from himself - although he breaks his own rules in due course. In such a short story it wasn't really possible to fully explore the characters of the protagonists but we do see Kimi growing up and beginning to understand what her status as a kijo means. This story worked on its own although the names and types of demons could be confusing initially. It's an interest read but the denouement between Kimi, Nic and Augustin seemed over rather quickly at the end.

These stories are all worth reading but all also suffer from the disadvantages of the short story format - it's hard to really find depth in, understand and sympathise with characters whom we barely get to know before the story ends, particularly as the sex between the main characters always seems to take up an inordinate amount of the word count, leaving much less for actual plot and characterisation. This book is probably one for the fans of the Crimson City series although it is also a great way to sample the writing of these four authors.

Copyright © 2007 Helen Hancox for Curled Up With A Good Book
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Dissapointing Jan. 21 2009
By L. Hewison - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Having greatly enjoyed the previous boks in the Crimson City series I was thrilled when I recieved Shards of Crimson as a christmas present. My excitment quickly faded however as I read my way through the pages, the first short story written by Liz Maverick was on par with the previous books but the whole thing went downhill after that. It seemed to me as though each author had just sat down and typed out the first thing that came into their heads in order to meet a deadline rather than really putting any thought into their respective part of the book. The stories were very thinly written with none of the addictive narrative or appealing characters that had me hooked on the previous books. A dissapointing experience. It's not somthing I shall be in a hurry to re-read
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
four delightful romantic fantasies Dec 26 2006
By Harriet Klausner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
"A Time to Howl" by Liz Maverick. In Crimson City, Tajo the werewolf tells his soulmate Princess Gia to forget him and leave, as he is a lone rogue. By doing this he breaks two hearts but he must confront Marius and the other Dumont vampires and their werewolf allies.

"DX" by Carolyn Jewel. As a favor to a friend and to regain her government security clearance, private investigator Hell Marshall accepts a case from I-Ops to bring down a killing DX (demon of unknown origin). The DX seems easy to deal with when compared to how her heart beats when she is near her partner Special Forces Agent Jordan Lightfeather.

"School Bites" by Jade Lee. At Ben Franklin Middle School, human teacher Toni Freedman intercedes in a fight between three male students when one of them Kumars Gray bit her. Principal John Wayne Wong wants to protect the woman he loves whether she is a wolf, human or both.

"Dark Awakening" by Patti O'Shea. The evil Bak-Faru pursues Kimi who fears what will happen if her stalker catches her as she is new to the demon game. Her only hope rests with Nic a demon if they can keep their star-crossed attraction under control.

These are four delightful romantic fantasies set in Crimson City, Los Angeles' latest reincarnation where four species battle for supremacy.

Harriet Klausner
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
A varied collection for fans of the Crimson City series March 10 2007
By Helen Hancox - Published on Amazon.com
The Crimson City series, created by Liz Maverick, is set in Los Angeles in the future when humans share the city with Vampires, Werewolves, Mechs and Demons. "Shards Of Crimson" has four short stories by Liz Maverick, Patti O'Shea, Carolyn Jewel and Jade Lee set within the Crimson City world and focusing on secondary characters from the earlier books. It's not necessary to have read any of the full-length novels to enjoy these stories but it can help to understand the background setting and some of the characters if you have.

"A Time To Howl" by Liz Maverick is the first story and it covers the Rogues, a breakaway group from the main power structures of the city, comprising a werewolf Tajo, vampire Hayden and two humans Jill and Bridget. They work as mercenaries but find that they have been set up, when watching the main vampire headquarters, as someone tries to kill a princess of the Werewolves, Gia, who is about to be given as bride to one of the vampires. Tajo the Werewolf ends up taking her hostage to keep her safe until they find who is trying to kill her. Of course Stockholm Syndrome does its work and although Tajo is a rough and ready man and not fit for a princess nature takes its course and the pair of them have to face up to the vampires.

Readers of this story would probably benefit from having read "Crimson Rogue" by Maverick as there are a lot of characters whose backstory we never quite fully understand. Although a good read with some moments of action there are also some unlikely plot devices and the relationship between the protagonists seems rather one-dimensional.

"DX" by Carolyn Jewel was a very different story, focusing on Hell Marshall, recently sacked from her job at Internal Operations in Crimson City following her relationship with a vampire, Tuan Ng. Hell is brought back to the team on a one-off basis to investigate a demon killing - the demon (the most dangerous kind, a Bak-Faru) almost killed Tuan and as Hell knows Tuan it is thought she will have most success with the investigation. She's partnered with Agent Jaden Lightfeather and very quickly their hormones start flying. However it soon becomes apparent that enemy and friend are somewhat confused and Hell has to decide who to trust - whether an evil demon can in fact be safer and more trustworthy than a friend.

This story had some interesting events and the underlying themes of the nature of trust and evil gave this story more depth. Hell knows that the hero has evil in him, she senses it, and yet she can also tell that he will protect her - it's unclear whether she's actually sold out for a handsome face and whether she will be happy with her future life but the tensions within the story make it a fun ride. This story worked well as a stand-alone and could be read without knowing any of the other Crimson City series as all necessary backstory is woven into the narration. It's an enjoyable read and very different from the preceding book in the collection.

The third book, "School Bites" by Jade Lee, was a particularly good contribution. Toni Freedman is a schoolteacher at a Middle School in Crimson City but her whole life is turned upside down when trying to break up a student fight. She is accidentally bitten by a young boy who has turned werewolf for the first time. Although applying the antidote it soon becomes clear that it hasn't worked and the school principal, John Wong, takes her home - getting rather more than he had bargained for in the process. Wong tries to train Toni in how to deal with being a werewolf - he is a Druid and has some skills in helping werewolves to keep control of their natures - but there is a definite deadline; if she doesn't show up at school on Monday everyone will know that she's a werewolf and she will lose her job. But things aren't as easy as they seem and when Toni returns to the school the secret is out - but it's not just her secret. Toni learns a great deal more about her fellow-teachers and students and what the school is actually about, as well as learning what it means to be a feared minority.

The themes of this story, although about otherworldly creatures, relate just as well to our world and that is part of the strength of this tale. ExcIusion, lack of acceptance and fear of otherness are all things that Toni faces, along with her doubts about her own strength and control. We meet the two main characters in the full-length novel "A Taste Of Crimson", Keeli and Michael, but this story works very well without any background knowledge of the series. It's a good read with some interesting points but may have benefited from being longer so that Toni's relationships with her school children, with Wong and with the werewolf community of which she is now a part could have been more deeply explored.

The final story is "Dark Awakening" by Patti O'Shea and is significantly shorter than the rest. It follows Kimi Noguchi, a young lady who has a crush on Nic, a demon and the half-brother of her cousin Mika. Nic seems to be avoiding her but she discovers eventually that he has been warned off her. Kimi is aware that she is a kijo, a special type of human and that she will gain some extra powers through training, but she doesn't realise that being a kijo is dangerous for her. At this stage of her life a demon could strip her of her powers - and Augustin, a Bak-Faru demon, is planning to do just that. Kimi enlists Nic's help to protect her from the demon but how can he do so when Augustin has already killed Nic's father and bested the son?

This was an enjoyable little story about the differences between humans and demons and the evil nature of some demons. Nic is aware that he could be dangerous to his soulmate as well and has been avoiding her to keep her safe from himself - although he breaks his own rules in due course. In such a short story it wasn't really possible to fully explore the characters of the protagonists but we do see Kimi growing up and beginning to understand what her status as a kijo means. This story worked on its own although the names and types of demons could be confusing initially. It's an interest read but the denouement between Kimi, Nic and Augustin seemed over rather quickly at the end.

These stories are all worth reading but all also suffer from the disadvantages of the short story format - it's hard to really find depth in, understand and sympathise with characters whom we barely get to know before the story ends, particularly as the sex between the main characters always seems to take up an inordinate amount of the word count, leaving much less for actual plot and characterisation. This book is probably one for the fans of the Crimson City series although it is also a great way to sample the writing of these four authors.

Copyright © 2007 Helen Hancox for Curled Up With A Good Book
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Crimson City is Back!!!Yeeeesssss!!! Jan. 30 2007
By Danielle - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This return to Crimson City was absolutely wonderful. I would be very hard pressed to pick a favorite short story here because each one delivered a punch in the arm that keeps the reader turning pages. I'm keeping this review short. BUY IT!!!! BUY IT!!!!! BUY IT!!!!

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