Saturday, September 5, 2015

Series Saturday Review, Blog Tour and Author Interview: Nightbloom by Juliette Cross

by Juliette Cross
Series:  Nightwing #3
Pub. Date:  Aug. 25, 2015
Publisher:  Lyrical Press
Pages:  151
Format:  eARC
Source:  NetGalley

My Rating:  
Sultry Scale:

The love between a human and a Morgon, the dragon-hybrid race, tempts fate once more…

All her life, Ella Barrow has allowed others to make her decisions. Forced to stifle her artistic talents and stay in a loveless relationship with Clayton Kerrington, the man her mother believes to be her perfect match, Ella’s life may be safe—but it’s not her own. Paxon Nightwing, on the other hand, is anything but the safe choice. 

A charming and alluring Morgon, Paxon sees Ella for the woman she truly is. His bold confidence and protective nature ignites a passion she’s never felt before. But a dark family tragedy forces their secrecy—until Clayton makes it impossible to hide their clandestine affair. Will Ella be strong enough to fight for herself at last? Or will she succumb once more and risk losing the only man she’s ever loved?

This was a much-anticipated book for me... one of those that kept popping up in the back of my head while I was trying to get all my other books read. But that just goes to show that Juliette knows how to crank out stories that grab your attention.

Our heroine in this book is Ella Barrow, the final friend of the trifecta of girls we first met in Soulfire. Ella is extremely shy, meek, reserved, afraid of her shadow, you name it. The type of heroine I usually hate and scream at while I'm reading. So imagine my surprise that Ella is actually my favorite heroine of the Nightwing series! I am absolutely shocked, but that again is a credit to Juliette's writing. Although Ella was meek and mild-mannered, she was not an annoyingly weak female. She had some issues, she wanted to work through them, and it turns out the thing she needed to find her backbone was one steamy hot Morgon male.

Our featured Morgon man meat in Nightbloom is Pax, cousin to the Nightwing brothers, Lucius and Lorian. I didn't focus on Paxon much in previous books, but I had the idea in my head that he was a party boy. But obviously I had the wrong idea because Pax is not a party boy - he is very serious and cultured. And, much to my delight, his beast rides close to the surface as well. I don't think he outpaces Lorian from Windburn as my favorite book boyfriend of the series, but he cuts it pretty close. I loved how caring and supportive he was of Ella... and it was holy hotness when he let his dragon out to play! Yumm-meee!

If you haven't entered the Morgon world to explore the race of dragon-human hybrids, you are missing out. Juliette has created such a fun and unique world of hot alpha male dragons, fun and spunky heroines, and villains that you love to hate. The only complaint I would have about any of these books is that I wish they were longer! I want to spend more time with these growly gentlemen and at only 150ish pages each, it goes by in the blink of an eye. But lucky for us - we have a spinoff series to enjoy, starting with Kol Moonring in Waking the Dragon.

I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 4 stars / 3 flames.

About the Author

Juliette calls lush, moss-laden Louisiana home where the landscape curls into her imagination, creating mystical settings for her stories. She has a B.A. in creative writing from Louisiana State University, a M.Ed. in gifted education, and was privileged to study under the award-winning author Ernest J. Gaines in grad school. Her love of mythology, legends, and art serve as constant inspiration for her works. From the moment she read JANE EYRE as a teenager, she fell in love with the Gothic romance--brooding characters, mysterious settings, persevering heroines, and dark, sexy heroes. Even then, she not only longed to read more novels set in Gothic worlds, she wanted to create her own.

Juliette is a multi-published author, including her Nightwing series with Kensington Publishing and The Vessel Trilogy with Samhain Publishing.

Author Links:  Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Website

Author Interview

Bambinas, I am very excited to welcome Juliette Cross to Bambi's Unbridled Universe.  Let's give her a big welcome and find out what we can about our favorite winged alphas!

So Juliette, is this the end of the Nightwing series or are there more dark and handsome Nightwing family members out there for our reading pleasure?
Hi, Bambi! First, thank you for having me here today. And it's funny you should say that. I've been toying with the idea of a few Nightwing cousins living in the Morgon-only provinces north of Gladium. We'll see more of this part of the Morgon world in future books in the Vale of Stars series.
I love that we are going to have the spinoff Vale of Stars series to keep us entertained!  Can you give us a sneak peak at who our leading alpha male Morgons might be in future books?
Absolutely. In the next book, Dragon in the Blood, we'll see Conn Rowanflame, the russet-winged charmer. Other future books will feature Kol Moonring's twin brother, Kieren and the quiet but deadly, Bowen Huntergild. There will be secondary characters you haven't met yet who will come to the forefront in later books. 
I love the world building for these books, do you have any particular city in mind when writing about the human and Morgon cities - or does everything get baked from scratch right in your head?
Thank you! Honestly, I don't think of a particular city that I know in the real world. It's a complete fantasy place in my head, specifically because the Morgon architecture and the provinces that are Morgon only (like Drakos and Cloven) don't look like any city that I know. I've actually even sketched a map of the world and where the provinces, mountain regions, and woodlands lay next to each other. I'm hoping to either include a map in one of the books or at least create it for my website one of these days.
Along those same lines, we have seen some very detailed descriptions of artwork in these stories.  Do you base these art pieces on works you have seen, or does a little artist live in you as well?
Wow, Bambi. You've caught my second love. Not that I' m an artist, but I'm a hardcore art lover. So it definitely acts as inspiration in my stories. I used to teach Fine Arts to high school students, which I adored doing simply because I was paid to talk about art all day. Ha! I'd definitely say that many of the artworks I describe in my books mimic certain styles that I favor, like impressionism, post-impressionism, and Baroque. And I love sculpture, so it pops up in my writing, as it does in Nightbloom.
Dragons are one of my favorite paranormal creatures - what drew you to write about human dragon hybrids instead of some other paranormal creature?
I also have an affinity for dragons. Something about their power, strength, and majesty that is  so alluring. And when I first started to brainstorm about this new series, I knew I wanted it to be set in a complete fantasy world of my own. I also wanted a paranormal creature that was familiar but also different. Believe it or not, the spark came from a work of art I saw when I Googled "dragons." It was of a fierce dragon next to a beautiful woman with dragon wings. So I thought, how cool would it be if there was a race of half-dragons living alongside humans. From there, I started dreaming up the mythology of Princess Morga and the Dragon King Radomis.
For those of us who have not yet gotten to read your other series, The Vessel Trilogy, can you tell us a little bit about it?
The Vessel Trilogy is totally different from the Morgon books. It's a contemporary paranormal/urban fantasy series set mostly in New Orleans, but also in Scotland, London, and Hell. Yep, you read that right. The trilogy follows one MC, Genevieve Drake, who discovers she is a Vessel, a weapon for the side of Light but can be corrupted for the Dark. Her protector and love interest is the hot demon hunter, Jude Delacroix. The trilogy contains angels, demons, demon hunters, nasty demon spawn (including dragons, the bad kind) and creepy creatures called soul-eaters. The spin-off series, Age of Gray, will tell the love stories of many of the secondary characters we meet along the way.
And finally, what can we look forward to next from you?
I just finished writing The Deepest Well, book one in the spinoff series from The Vessel Trilogy. I've had many readers ask me about the love story of George and Kat, so they'll finally get to read it. This first book is mostly set back in time in the 1800s, so this is my first historical paranormal. I'm anxious and excited to see what readers think. The books after this one will be set in a future post-apocalyptic world where angels and demons battle for dominion over earth.
Thanks so much Juliette for spending time with us today! I have much enjoyed our twitter interaction (twitteraction?) discussing these fabulous dragon men!  

For those of you who want even more Juliette Cross, hop on over to Deanna's World for another interview and review!

 Nightwing / Vale of Stars Series

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