May 27, 2014

ARC Review--Aces Wild by Amanda Carlson

Welcome to Vegas. Home of the Sin City Collectors. The job description is easy: Bring the offending supernatural in to the Boss and don’t ask any questions.

Nevada Hamilton has learned a few things since becoming a Sin City Collector, and staying away from vampires is one of them. After botching her first Collection, the vamp getting away after causing as much damage as possible, she hasn’t been assigned to another one since.

But when she receives her next playing card, she’s in for a surprise. Not only is a vampire her next target, but they’ve paired her up to make sure she gets the job done right. Refusing a Collection is not an option, but when she discovers who she’s working with, making the mission as difficult as possible for her new partner becomes her top priority…

Being a hellhound isn’t enough to protect Jake Troubadour from Nevada Hamilton, no matter how thick his skin is. Finding out he has to work with the beautiful dhampir, after not seeing her for three years, is a low blow—but Jake is a professional. He takes his Collections as seriously as he does running his bar. He’ll do whatever it takes to get the job done, but after that, he’s out. No more chances for the girl who wrecked his bike and scarred his soul so long ago. But even with his heart dead set against it, this hellhound quickly finds he’s not immune to love after all.

What’s Collected in Vegas, stays in Vegas...

I received this ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review, I was in no way compensated for this review.

Amanda Carlson starts off this new series of novellas, Sin City Collections, with Aces Wild and what a read it was! This is something entirely new for me, a series of novellas written by different authors to be released one at a time! Normally I'd read an anthology where we have a theme of some sort, but these novellas will all take place in the same world! So it's definitely going to be an exciting series to read! And quick too!

Nevada Hamilton is a dhampir and a Collector. From what I could gather, it basically sounds like a police force for supernaturals. I wasn't able to get a good grasp on the Collectors and their buildup, other than that they collect supernatural bad guys for The Boss, who remains a nameless figure, but this is the first in the collection, so I guess answers are meant to be given so soon!

When her boss, not The Boss, tells her she has to Collect a certain vampire and that her partner will be the hellhound, Jake Troubadour, Neve is not a happy camper. She and Jake had a thing once three years ago and she's never looked back on it. Needless to say, it didn't end well. Having to work with the hellhound after so much time has passed by doesn't please her. She's been doing her best to push him out of her life.

Jake on the other hand, isn't too thrilled with working with Neve either. He's a bit hurt from her actions three years ago. He hasn't been able to get her out of his mind either. And naturally this leads to a boatload of romantic tension between the two.

I have to say that Amanda did one helluva job writing this novella! She packed sooo much into so few pages. There was history between Neve and Jake, and we got the details along the way and then there was even more buildup around the mysterious villain! And even a hint at what her next novella from this series would be come August! It was remarkable! I always find trying to write a novella is harder than the novel, because you basically have to combine all those novel writing elements into the novella, but give the story in under a hundred (or so) pages. That's freaking hard!! Which is probably why I didn't do so hot in my high school short story college my first critique group loved my over the page limit story!

Anyway, this novella was just awesome! I loved it! The action was well paced and the romance was to die for! I loved that there was even something "chemical" between Neve and Jake. Something threatens to keep them apart and it will take a lot of willpower from the two of them to work it out. And let's just say wow! I wasn't expecting my own kind of reaction from the two of them! I was totally thrown into their ordeal and dying to see what would happen between them! Novellas can sometimes have an odd effect on me! I might enjoy it, but never feel totally involved in the loving of it or whatever, so yeah, I was surprised by how much I sank into this one like I do with a regular novel!

To make an insanely long review short, ha!, this was the first in a new novella series and I have to say that if you love Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy, then definitely check this series out! There's a great lineup of authors and if you see even one name you are at all familiar with, then I suggest you buy, buy, buy the entire lineup! The series is going to have different characters with each novella, but they are all in the same world, so we might yet again see Neve and Jake pop up in the next one!

Authors to look for in this incredibly amazing series are: Amanda Carlson, Kristen Painter, Sara Humphreys, Angie Fox, and Shawntelle Madison!

Overall Rating 4.5/5 stars--again, my only complaint was not fully understanding who the Collectors are as a group and who the mysterious Boss is. But it might be too soon to know that second bit!

Aces Wild releases June 1, 2014


  1. I'll have to check out this series, Jessica. Anytime a novella can leave you so satisfied is a good thing! ;)

  2. Great review. I'm going to start this one VERY soon.

  3. Wow, I think I'll go check it out soon! ^-^


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