Love, Blood, and Sanctuary by Brenda Murphy, Megan Hart and Fiona Zedde is a compilation of three different erotic romances all set in a world of mystical, supernatural forces. Each story is linked to the next through the characters appearing at Sanctuary, a fun hangout space for anyone who is a little more than human.
The three stories in order:
Sanguine Faith by Brenda Murphy
Laurel finds herself unemployed and in need of a place to stay after a messy breakup. She is desperate and cannot decline her great-uncle’s offer of a townhouse and job, even though she is desperate to resist getting sucked into his world.
There is a reason that her uncle is so amenable to letting her live rent-free in this particular townhouse. As it turns out there is already someone living there. A spirit who doesn’t like strangers and will do everything she can to drive them out.
But a series of interesting turns reveals that perhaps Laurel is exactly what the current resident needs and just maybe Laurel has found exactly the kind of dom she has always longed for.
This story is a brief peak into an underworld of magic, dark and light, old and powerful with a side of spice and power play.
We Choose to Be by Megan Hart
Hadassah is a practicing hemomancer. She reads people’s blood the way you would read tea leaves. And when she meets a woman at a bar and takes Yael to one of the back rooms for an unforgettable evening she is ill prepared for the fact that the woman is perfect for her.
Perhaps a little too perfect.
When secrets turn into complications Hadassah runs from Yael but the chemistry and bond is too strong for either of them to deny and they are drawn together in a way that is perhaps more than just great sex.
But can a demon really be the one? It’s a decision that Hadassah must make before she loses Yael forever.
Promises Made by Starlight by Fiona Zedde
Izzy has never quite recovered from being abandoned by her wife a few years before and is now forced to seek help with her terrible financial situation. When her wife reappears claiming that she was not gone for that long Izzy feels the overwhelming desire for this woman resurface along with the anger she has about being abandoned.
Through a crazy turn of events Izzy finally learns the truth about the love of her life and is put in real danger. But is there any way that they can be together when her wife’s siblings are seeking to destroy her?
Pros And My Favourite Parts
I want to start with an acknowledgement of how much I love the cover. It’s gorgeous.
I also really appreciated how cool and interesting all three stories were. Each had a unique voice and yet they worked so well together.
BDSM and power play is not generally my go to so this is not the kind of book I would normally pick up. But it is super light on that front while being heavy on the character and supernatural/paranormal front. Overall I really enjoyed it.
All three stories were beautifully written, the characters were intriguing and the worlds being built had me hooked. I would read the heck out of an extended series that explored them more.
Cons And Heads Up
The connecting thread is the bar called Sanctuary. It was mentioned very briefly in all three of the stories but not enough to satisfy my curiosity about it. So, authors, please write more stuff about this bar.
If you want something heavy on passion where three amazingly different yet equally strong and talented voices come together to give you a glimpse into the otherworldly then this is your next read.
I highly recommend it.
The passion in all three stories overwhelms everything else and it’s just oh so satisfying.
I also want to mention the small details, Murphy included details about painting and art, Hart and Zedde about food and cultural references thereof – I LOVE when authors take the time to include this kind of thing. It fleshes out the worlds and draws me in. I absolutely loved that element of the book.
All in all I enjoyed the book and recommend it to anyone who likes otherworldly stories.
Excerpt from Love, Blood, and Sanctuary by Brenda Murphy, Megan Hart and Fiona Zedde
Excerpt from Sanguine Faith by Brenda Murphy (because it is the first story in the book)
Over the years of watching individuals take possession of the house, Catherine had arrived at a theory of personality based on what room the renters set up first in the house. Those who valued food and creature comforts unpacked and set up the kitchen first. Desire or money drove people who set up the bedroom. They were Catherine’s favorite renters, most often new lovers or those who made their living providing sexual care to others.
An infinitesimally few individuals set up their passions first. The writers who unpacked their office, stopping to scribble ideas on random bits of paper as they occurred to them. Once a woman had stopped to outline an entire novel on the packing cardboard with a marker. Catherine had hovered just out of her consciousness, fascinated by her process.
Then there were obsessive readers unpacking books and organizing their bookshelves before placing one dish in the kitchen. Sometimes, they stopped and read, letting the rest of the unpacking go while they savored words. Laurel appeared to be an artist to her core, as she unpacked her art supplies and ignored both the bedroom and the kitchen.
Waves of sorrow and frustration poured off Laurel. Deep and wide, they buffeted Catherine. Laurel had loved. And lost her heart. Scenes from her partner’s infidelity filled Laurel’s mind. Catherine watched them unfold, rocked by the intensity of Laurel’s emotions.
Her power was unchecked, a wild surge of energy that titillated as it swirled and enveloped Catherine. The scent of her blood and energy signature filled the room, a siren call to Catherine’s need. She gathered herself and stretched her hand toward Laurel’s neck. No. Not this way. No. Catherine drew back. She is a precious commodity. How could she not know? Or maybe she does?
The interaction with the demon had been one-sided, that much was plain to Catherine. Laurel had allowed the centurion to believe they were bonded, while holding a part of herself back. Laurel had accepted the demon’s protection although she was clearly much more powerful than the centurion. Her power was equal to Catherine’s, a gift from birth if the centurion was to be believed. With education and practice her abilities would surpass Catherine’s.
A smidge of jealousy seeped in as Catherine considered what she had given up in order to attain her powers, what she had done, to be as she was. Catherine shoved away the regrets that nipped at the corners of her thought. No. No regrets. I will have my freedom. And my vengeance. She gazed at Laurel, perhaps her pleas had been heard and this was the Goddess’s gift to her. A super to free her. A partner to join her in her quest for revenge on those who had taken her lover, her life, and her eternal rest.
Laurel shoved the lid off a plastic bin and drew out an inlaid puzzle box. Dark walnut wood contrasted with light oak, the mosaic patterns on the sides and lids as ancient as the design. Laurel smoothed her fingers over the lid. Tears slid from her eyes and she dashed her wrist over her face to wipe them away as her control shattered.
The box. How on earth does she have the box?
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Bits and Bobs
ISBN number: 9781648903045
Publisher: NineStar Press
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Note: I received a free review copy of Love, Blood, and Sanctuary by Brenda Murphy, Megan Hart and Fiona Zedde. No money was exchanged for this review. When you use our links to buy we get a small commission which supports the running of this site