Sunday, 24 February 2019

Review of Don't Bait Me

Don't Bait Me by Jackie May
Nora Jacobs #3
Published 16 January 2019 by Bluefields Publishing

Now that Nora has been outed as an underworlder, all she wants to do is lay low, figure out how to hide her fey heritage and decide if she wants to date any of the men in her life. Unfortunately, fate has other plans.  

Just one week after the werewolf fiasco, Terrance is nearly killed by an unknown attacker. He's not the only victim. Fey all around the city are being murdered and with Nora's reputation for solving cases, they're looking to her for help. What choice does she have but to get involved? Not only does being fey maker her a target, but the killer went after her troll. He's going to pay for that. 


This is the third installment of the Nora Jacobs series. These books must be read in order. 






The husband and wife duo writing under the nom de plume, Jackie May, is back again with another Nora Jacobs story and it doesn’t disappoint – at all. If I hadn’t been running all over Central Florida this past weekend with almost no sleep whatsoever, I would have read Don’t Bait Me in one delectable sitting at once.
Nora Jacobs is back and she is ready to take on the Underworld as her newly discovered Siren self. But this girl cannot get a moment’s peace it seems, not even for Turkey day. Her faerie trollfather (ha!), Terrence, is attacked and left to die outside of Whole Foods as he’s loading up his car with Thanksgiving feast groceries – because Nora forgot her coup can’t fit the kitchen sink. When Nora and her menfolk convene at Detroit’s FUA headquarters to have Enzo heal Terrence, Nora learns that FUA can’t touch the case because the Fae never signed the treatise recognising FUA's authority as a peace-keeping agency. After FUA's Director West reminds Nick and Ren that they can't touch Terrence's attack and other members of the fae community grudgingly ask her for her sleuthing assistance based on her past meritorious conduct, she goes for it. And the guys are okay with it, so long as Parker tags along to watch her back. Nora stumbles her way through playing detective again and somehow manages to do the thing without dying.
Something that I haven't seen in my many years of RH reading is how the Jackie May duo approaches the construction of Nora's harem. Jackie May acknowledges that love doesn't haven't to be of the romantic variety to be all-important. What we've already seen from the series is that, in addition to the romantic interests, Nora's harem consists of Terrence who's a total father figure to Nora, going so far as to Claim her as Clan and Ren who is gay and loves Nora as a friend or sister, Nick loves Nora as a kid sister (I know, we all love Nick Gorgeous but if anybody knows the big brother vibe, it's me), and hell, Cecile is even in there if you want to make folks uncomfortable "a girl in the harem! le gasp!" Cecile's basically adopted Nora as a little sister and the world is just going to have to deal with that awesomeness. Then there's Wulf and I'll admit, I'm still a bit keen on him joining his brother in the romantic harem but most folks are going to freak out right there so that's probably not going to happen. But yeah, Wulf is part of the expanded harem as he's always been right there for Nora since Day One and I honestly can't get a real read on what sort of love he's got going on inside that wolfish mind of his, but I'm totally #TeamWulf.
On to characters, yay! Mmkay. We have a veritable Underworld UN going on in this book and I love it. We have a mermaid, selkies, brownies (the fae, not the delicious food), gargoyles, elves, and, of course, Henry the skeevy prick that should really get staked. Like I've said before, I'm not a big vampire fan, but I'm not even mean enough to class Henry as a vampire. He gives vampires a bad name. Yes, he's influenced by Nora's weird lure, but that just magnifies his actual personality. A douche is a douche is a douche. They also add one more member to Nora's romantic harem, I'm not saying this new member is the final addition because #TeamWulf.
Ren, Terrence, Nick, and Cecile seem to share some basic knowledge of siren anthropology. Y'all. Sharing is caring. Ha, that's funny. Seriously, if y'all know something about your friend who is grasping for any little tidbit about their Origin Story, be a friend and tell them. Especially if they've spent their entire lives believing themselves to be human and suddenly discover that to be false and there are no known members of their species around to clue them in to their particular type of weird. I'd be one ticked off chick if my friends did that to me.
Something that I truly love about Jackie May's writing of the Nora Jacobs series is how they approach Nora's Traumatic Past, she starts her journey in Don't Cheat Me as pretty traumatised, understandably, but through the series, she and her friends have been working through her issues. The author duo is breaking the stigma of therapy by bringing it up Nora's techniques. Nora forces herself to work through her wrecked headspace, something I greatly admire as I've struggled with this same issue over the years and I know how hard it is to trust anybody. Nora is literally pushing herself time and time again through these books to break free from the hold her past has on her.
Now, because this isn't an ARC, I can share two of my favourite quotes with y'all. The others contain spoilers and I have a hard stance against spoilers.

"Demons don't have families. We're solitary, unless we join a horde." He shuddered. "That's more like joining a gang than a family." 
Nora invites all of the members of her Made Family to her Thanksgiving feast, including Ren and it makes our gaybie incubus a tad emotional because he's never had a family to share it with either. Seriously. If you meet me and I like you, you're going to be fed. And if I like you, there's probably going to be books and handknits involved. Ren and anybody else is welcome at my table any time. Also, as someone who has had experience with both gangs and families, they're pretty similar in my experience. But I think hordes would fall in that grey area in the in-between. Hopefully, we can have a look into the demon thing in the next book so we can see?

"Any Hallmark or Netflix Christmas movie," I answer. "The cheesier the better."
Nora cements herself as one of my favourite heroines when she tells this to Rook because same. My mom and I have a ritual where we have a Girls Weekend and we binge on x cheesy trope movies. It's been our tradition since I was about 12 years old or something. We've seen them all. Welcome to the cheesy trope club, Nora. You're totally welcome, honey.
I do have to warn y'all, Don't Bait Me ends on a smidgen of a cliffhanger, so I'm chomping at the bit to read the next in the series and I don't know when it will be out. It's not an earth-shattering cliffhanger but more of a "well, that just happened and things are sure to be happening" cliffhanger.
I'm going to rate Don't Bait Me a solid 4 stars and 2 flames for sexy times, because Nora's actually starting to make inroads there. Nothing scorch-worthy but hey, progress is progress. Don't Bait Me is available through Kindle Unlimited, so it's only available on Amazon at this time.



Jackie May is a pseudonym for a husband and wife writing team. Josh and Kelly live in Phoenix, Arizona with their four children and their cat, Mr. Darcy. Jackie May is their only daughter. (And she keeps asking for her cut of the profits since we’re using her name.)
The author duo can be found on their goodreadsinstagramtwitter, and facebook.


Other books by Jackie May that I've reviewed include Don't Rush Me and Don't Cheat Me.


As always, I'm ending my review post with a charity. Normally, I'd try to pick a charity that works with the book I reviewed but my mum has some special kids that she's working with and they're pretty amazing, in my opinion, and I've heard a lot of hard luck stories from the teachers of Hillsborough County about their students. We actually go shopping at Sam's Club every month, to pick up foodstuff for a teacher-stocked student food bank because some of these kids don't have food at home. I'm an overly emotional mess when it comes to hard luck kids, okay. But HCPS has an overabundance of these kids and I CANNOT HOLD BACK THE TEARS! Anyway, there is a charity called Oasis Network which takes donations of new and gently used items and money in order to buy things for students of Hillsborough County and social workers that work within the schools can come in and pick up things for kids in need. Now, I'm going to go find some Kleenex because my allergies have me tearing up.
Happy reading and be on the lookout for my next post which is already in the works because I'm doing the thing! Whoo!

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

This Is Emotional Word Vomit and I Have No Title

I've learned from past bad experiences to not share much of my personal world online, I've been stalked and all that. I had to delete all of my internet accounts and start fresh with a new randomly created email/username completely unconnected to my actual name. Fun, right? But I have this blog I'm trying to make a permanent thing, so I should probably explain more about my ghosting than "some shit hit the fan so I had to take some time to wrap my head around it".

I'm just going to put a giant Content/Trigger Warning on this. This turned into more than a simple "hi" post. If you're emotionally and/or mentally impacted by the health and loss of a beloved pet, please be aware that's in here. If you'd still like to read this post but skip the triggering content, use your search function (to avoid accidentally viewing the content!) to find "END OF TRIGGERING CONTENT".








If you've paid attention to my ramblings, you'll know that I have four dogs. Manatee, Nikita, Zeus, and Sk├Ądi. Zeus has been our glitchy baby since I had to help deliver him because he was too big to come out of his mum, which pretty much turned me off of ever having a biological child because I don't ever want somebody getting that personal with me during something like that. Our vet from Georgia was not a very good vet and didn't catch Zeus' underlying problem and just diagnosed him with chronic ear infections and a bevy of allergies. The amount of medications Z is on is close to mine. Our new vet here in Florida has been trying to help us with him and we've recently learned that my Dumbledork has several tumors in his head that can't be removed. So, taking into consideration exactly how badly all of us are going to react to this, we are scheduling his leaving this world for the end of March when my mum's school has their Spring Break. In addition to Zeus being our beloved 'Dumbledork', Zeus has been a rock for my brother who has a plethora of medical issues, including autism and paranoid schizophrenia. My brother has been unmedicated for the past 5 years and he's had Zeus as a constant companion the entire time. I'm worried that losing his best friend will bring back the Not Nice version of my brother.
I am trying very hard to keep it together and get things done blogwise, but I just keep looking at book dates and thinking "Zeus won't be here for this book's debut" or "that's Zeus' and Nikki's birthday, he won't be here this year so we'll have to figure something special out to distract us." and "oh, that's my brother's birthday. He won't have Z for it this year."









END OF TRIGGERING CONTENT

I had made tentative plans to attend the Space Coast Book Lovers Convention this June since it's the weekend after my birthday and what better way to celebrate turning 30 than to go to a book convention, right? I know, I've mellowed A LOT with age. My twentieth birthday party included a Texas sheet cake and a food fight involving said cake and ice cream with my boyfriend and our friends. Anyways, luckily, I hadn't bought my tickets before we talked to the vet, and I'm not out $75 and however much I'd have spent on gas and my stay at a hotel.
Anyways!! I have a hardcore planner for this year, you know those giant fantastical things you can buy at Michaels or Amazon to try to keep track of all of my medical things and my brother's stuff and my mom's school schedule and all things bookish. I've had to move my book schedule around to play catch up on when everything went sideways over the holidays and January. Look at that planner. It's sparkly and it plays on my #OperationBeautiful lifestyle and it weighs just under 2lbs!!


I'm also in the process of changing primary care physicians because I've decided I actually don't have to sit through monthly 15 minute appointments of verbal abuse from a hypocritical arse who doesn't listen to a single thing I say and just wants to harangue me over my weight and tell me how that's my only actual problem. Yeah, I'm not paying for that. Sorry. Byeeeeee.
And my medical centre changed software over the holidays and they've lost bits and pieces of files. Including mine. So I might be having to redo some tests I've already done (please, gods, not the MRIs!) and I had to refile my HIPAA paperwork when I was in for my neurologist appointment. Y'all. I had to do my HIPAA papers after my neurologist appointment where they administered the first dose of my newest addition to my migraine cocktail. Aimovig. I was so 'seasick', Manny forced me to sit down before I fell down. Have y'all seen the commercial? So inclusive! I got it on the 8th and so far, I've only had a couple of migraines in comparison to my near constant barrage that was Not Pretty Nor Fun. I'm pretty in love with Aimovig.
I'm putting together a couple reviews right now, one for scheduling (sorry, I can't tell anything more) and some of the ones I had planned to do in January. I'm actually reading a couple books at once and consuming numerous sticky notes to make note of things I want to use in my reviews. I feel so responsible.
And now I must go find links and images for said reviews.
Until next time, darlings, have a happily ever after.