The Penned Piper
Mandi H. Bowerman
In-Between Work and Play Review
Relina Skye's In-Between Work and Play is book one in her Jocelyn Frost series. I was attracted to this book because it delves heavily into the world of mythology. I can spend hours reading about gods and goddesses from all pantheons. That was the first draw to this book. The second was a plot line I have never come across. It was different than anything else I've read before.
Jocelyn Frost is a demi-goddess (half-human daughter of Baldur) counselor who has a big problem to solve. She has to find contraceptive devices that work on demigods and goddesses. Apparently, the semen of the demigoddess breaks through condoms and birth control is useless. It definitely hurts the ability of the demigoddesses who want a healthy, intimate relationship without have multiple children...usually all at once. Jocelyn heads to the magic archives to find answers where she meets the progeny of the Egyptian god Thoth, Declan Rivers. There the romance and quest for god-strength contraception begins. This also entwines with a plot to use Jocelyn's blood in a dark ritual involving evil warlocks. There was never a dull moment in this book.
Relina's world of gods and goddesses is well put together. The book compromises of three worlds: the Earth, the In-Between, and Erda. Erda is the true realm of all the fae, gods, and goddesses. I don't think any creature of legend was left of the list. Normally, all the realms and creatures would overwhelm me but Relina keeps them in order and focuses the action in the In-Between. I enjoyed reading and understand the world she crafted. Each time a new fae or supernatural being appeared I got excited.
For those who like some spice in their novels, you won't be disappointed. The novel has a sexual plot but the book was not peppered with gratuitous sex on each page. I don't like it when every chapter reads like a dirty magazine. Relina's puts the actual act in just enough to make it fit in with the romance between the two main characters. Oh, and the magic that holds the worlds together is based on sex magic. Thankfully, there wasn't long descriptions about that.
Relina's book reminded of Laurell K. Hamilton's Merry Gentry series. But instead of trying to have a baby, the goal is to not have one. The book was a fun, light read but with enough depth to keep it from being shallow. I would be interested in Book #2 to see what happens with Jocelyn and Declan. I recommend this book for fantasy romance lovers everywhere.
Loren Weaver - Paranormal Storyteller
In Between Work and Play by Relina Skye is the first in the Jocelyn Frost series. Jocelyn is a demigoddess on a mission, and its getting dangerous.
Jocelyn is a therapist for Demigoddess Anonymous and her therapy group has asked her to look into reliable contraception for the extremely fertile demigod/demigoddess community. When she accepts, she’s thrown into an adventure bigger than she thought. She meets a sexy librarian from the arrives, Declan, and he helps her on her quest.
Along the way, there’s a couple subplots that make an appearance. One involving vampires and another involving warlocks, but I won’t give away too much here. Between the three interwoven adventures, Jocelyn and Dex have a lot on their plates.
I enjoyed the book, although there were parts that were a little slow. This is the first in a series, and so a couple of the subplots weren’t really resolved in this book. I’m guessing that’s coming in book two. There’s a lot of descriptive parts, but that comes with a new world and pantheons that readers are at first unfamiliar with.