I am loving when great authors get together and bundle their shorts as eBooks. I've been a fan of anthologies for a long time, but sometimes you just want to keep one or two stories from an antho. Lately, a lot of my favorite shorts have been re-released by the authors as eBooks. Here's a few I recently read.
I actually did this one in a different order - I first bought it because of Brook's Iron Seas story. Knowing that it would likely be my favorite, I read the other ones first (I've learned something as I've read anthologies - especially ones where I buy them because of one particular story).
Overall, I really enjoyed all 3 (and I was quite surprised that I liked one of them). They are all new novellas, so this was my first time reading them.
The Blushing Bounder by Meljean Brook: This one was short but so very sweet. I really liked it because it was the first in this series from a bounder POV (bounders are people from the New World who come back to England after the fall of the Horde). It gives a little taste of what the colonies think of the "infected" buggers in London. I liked Newberry a lot in Iron Duke, and it was nice to see his HEA (even if it did happen before ID). If you haven't read anything from the Iron Seas series, you should still be OK.
Vixen by Jill Myles: A were-vixen removes herself from people because her sexual appetite is too great (in the wild, vixens are naturally promiscuous and this translates for the were variety as well). Then hunters threaten her family, her mother sends 2 hot were cats, and I think we can all see where this one is going. Not my usual thing (to be honest, if the word "menage" is in the description, I pass it over), but it works. Probably because it's a short. I don't think I'd read more on this relationship, but I'll check out Myles other, more monogamous reads.
Kitten-Tiger and the Monk by Carolyn Crane: Set in Crane's Disillusionist world, but focused this time on Sophia, Otto's right-hand woman, who is sick of the person she's become. Wow. I never would have thought that I'd feel anything but hate for Sophia, but I actually wanted her to have a HEA by the end. Not saying she doesn't have some more 'splainin' to do, but I'm rooting for her. Wondering what this means for events in book 3. Looking forward to that book even more. I also think that I preferred the 3rd person style in the short to the 1st person POV in the books. Just a personal preference when dealing with these characters. If you haven't read the series yet, then you will probably have a much different view of Sophia at the start of the story. I've gotta applaud Crane for writing a story centered on Sophia - that takes some guts.
I mentioned loving when great authors package their books together. This one goes a step further with snippety goodness from future books.
One for the Money by Jeaniene Frost (first in Death's Excellent Vacation) - A Cat & Bones story set after the events in book 4. Really loved it. Cat & Bones need to guard an heiress with a contract out on her life. They also need to deal with Cat's mom (who I actually like here). I'd never call Bones a saint, but his actions here are sure to bring squees of joy from fans. Best if you are caught up to book 4 in the series or there will be spoilers. Also snippets from Once Burned (Vlad's book!!!) and the Cat & Bones story from A Bite Before Christmas.
A Questionable Client by Ilona Andrews (first in Dark & Stormy Knights) - how Kate met Saiman, a couple of years before the events in Magic Bites (book 1 in the series). Fun story that I loved. New readers to Kate's world will not be confused - a good standalone. Great action and humor. I also love the inclusion of Slavic mythology, not something I've seen a lot in books. Also get snippets of Fate's Edge (Edge #3) and Magic Grieves (upcoming Kate novella).
[I got a free review copy of this one, but since I'd reviewed these stories in the original anthologies and my opinion hadn't changed, I just cut and pasted with a couple of minor edits.]
A Mere Formality by Ilona Andrews
I got this free from the Ilona Andrews website.
It's a romantic sci fi short, with the most inventive use of porn I've ever seen in a story. As cryptic as that sounds, I don't want to spoil anything by explaining more.
There is an 18 and over advisory on the story, but if you are expecting lots of the smexy scenes, think again. It is still very adult, just maybe not in the way you are imagining.
This was just a lot of fun to read. Good humor and characters. It's very short and will leave you wanting more.