Dare to Believe (The Gray Court #1) by Dana Marie Bell

Old Cover

Heat Rating

I originally wrote this review back in 2014 but have recently read Dare To Believe again and then realized that I had pulled this post for editing and updating after remodeling my blog.

There have been a couple of changes since the original posting that I feel necessary to mention as one of them may compel me to write a new review in the future. The first change is that this edition was published by Samhain Publishing and as some of you know they are no longer in business. Thankfully, Dana Marie Bell was one of the awesome authors who chose to self-republish their stories which brings us to the second change, a new cover. I will include the new cover in this post but I don’t plan on rating it at this time, as I intend to purchase the new addition at the first chance I get, because I am eager to know if there are any new scenes or modifications from the previous version of Dare To Believe which means a potentially new or even updated version of this review, who knows, but I am looking forward to finding out. But the big question will be what in the world will I do with this edition when I have the new edition.

Original Posting (Edited)
Do you know when you find a book that you read once and after that you just have to read it again

New Cover

and again because it stands out so much and just keeps calling to you, this is what happens every time my eyes run past any of Dana Marie Bell’s books?

Ruby is such an interesting character; I think her sense of self preservation is kind of muted because when she gets something in her head it immediately comes out of her mouth, even when dealing with the bad guys. I loved when she told the Deranged Darling she had spinach between her teeth that was priceless and calling the vampire, Jaden “Bunnicula”. Leo will have his work cut out for him trying to keep her out of trouble. I felt so bad for poor Jaden feeling like he is so alone because the two people he loves most turn out to be mates 😦

The characters in this book are larger than life and hook you right in from the very beginning. Even though this was the fourth time I have read this book I was still annoyed every time I had to put it down and now I feel the urge to go read the next book in the series again.

Quotes (This was not in the previous posting)
This is where I am going to beg Dana Marie Bell for forgiveness because I do know that one or two quotes are ok but more then that is bad, but I honestly could not choose which one to leave out so I am really sorry but I used all three, they really had me laughing and that has been a priceless gift over the past few years.

“You’re about to be ravished by a Seelie Sidhe lord and you’re misquoting The Wizard of Oz at me? I think I may be insulted.”—Leo

“The one where you tried to lick my toes through my mouth?”—Ruby

“And if you cheat on me I’m cutting off your balls and pickling them.”—Ruby

Book Cover Rating
The cover is eye catching but there is nothing in it that really translates into what Dare to Believe is about. My first reaction to the cover when I read Dare to Believe the first time was that the female model resembles Melissa Gilbert from Little House on The Prairie.

Book Blurb Rating

Book’s Blurb
Leo Dunne has been searching his entire life for the one person born just for him. He finds her working in his own company, but the shy little Ruby Halloway constantly hides from him. He hatches a devilish plot with her best friend to bring her out of her shell, and the result proves her desire is more than a match for his own.

Ruby has had the hots for her boss for some time now, but she knows business and pleasure shouldn’t mix. While that can’t stop a girl from dreaming, she sticks by her guns and does her best never to be alone with the handsome CEO. Until the company masquerade party, where she discovers a passion with him that leaves a mark on her soul.

A family emergency calls Leo away, and rather than spend one night out of Ruby’s arms, he convinces her to go with him. With his brother’s life on the line, it’s vital she learn how to deal with who, and what, her new lover really is…before it’s too late.

Published Jul 2009
Publisher Samhain Publishing
Purchase Links

Other Reviews
The Fire Within (The Nephilim #2) by Dana Marie Bell
The Wallflower (Halle Pumas #1) by Dana Marie Bell
Artistic Vision (Gray Court #3) by Dana Marie Bell
Sweet Dreams (Halle Pumas #2) by Dana Marie Bell
Of Shadows and Ash (Maggie’s Grove #3) By Dana Marie Bell
Figure of Speech (Halle Shifters #4) by Dana Marie Bell
The Hob (Gray Court #4) by Dana Marie Bell

Artistic Vision (Gray Court #3) by Dana Marie Bell

Heat Rating

“The child of Dunne will one day perform an act that will change our world”

I would say that it is pretty obvious that the child in question is Shane Dunne and after reading this one I have to say I have new question: What does the Black Queen want with not just Shane but all the Dunne’s? That was what I was left with at the end of this book but I am jumping ahead and I apologize but I just finished it so the end is very fresh in my mind.

Reading how Shane was trying to “woo” his mate was as very creative as his art work. Akane really just couldn’t walk away from the puzzle that was her “Jethro” or her puzzle box. I never knew dragons were addicted to puzzles.

I have to say I was really surprised by one twist in the story that I didn’t see coming and it wasn’t the fact the that the Hob had a child as he probably has several but as I don’t want to give that much of the book away, I will say I never expected one of the Hob’s children to be a bad guy. And then of course Cecilia and Henri, I sure hope they aren’t first cousin ’cause that has way to much icky eww to go a long way.

As I was reading I came across an inconsistency which is an anomaly in this book that I don’t think I have seen in any of Dana Marie Bells books. Dana’s attention to detail is phenomenal when it comes to the worlds she creates so I was actually surprised. So now to tease one of my favorite authors by asking (and yes I have to ask because I can’t resist); when did Leo become the big brother? I thought Shane was the older brother and Leo the older brother? 😉 Seriously though it does not take away from the story line in anyway, the characters are still compelling, sex scenes are smokin hot (no pun intended) between the Dragon, Akane and the Sidhe Lord/Leprechaun, Shane and the story line will leave eyes glued to the book much to your significant others consternation.

Favorite Quotes:

“Mea culpa. Sue me, but he was uglifying the place.” –Jaden

“Just finishing up some work before we face off with the Dork Brigade.”–Ruby

Book Cover Rating

Book Blurb Rating

Link to Artistic Vision

Book Blurb:
Akane Russo, one of the Hob’s top Blades, can’t wait for her current assignment to end. She’s been tasked with protecting Shane Dunne from the Malmayne clan’s scheme to kidnap him once again. But no one—not even her Seer half—warned her she’d have to protect herself from his heated gaze. Or that her dragon half would find him an irresistible puzzle.

Shane knew his destined bride would never come to him willingly, but she’s stuck with him and he plans to use her predicament to his advantage. It’s only a matter of time before she succumbs to what they both want. Their Claiming will be beautiful beyond even his wildest imaginings—and his wild, free dragoness will finally see herself as he sees her.

Then his unique, hybrid-borne visions reveal a new danger. The prophecy of the Child of Dunne can only be fulfilled down a path he must travel alone. To a place so dark and dangerous that even his truebond’s flame may not be bright enough to lead him home.

The Hob (Gray Court #4) by Dana Marie Bell


January 22, 2013
Samhain Publishing
Author’s Page

Michaela Exton is a Pediatric Nurse who has been obsessed with The Hob her entire life. Imagine her surprise when she finds out that he not only exists but that he belongs to her as well.

Robin Goodfellow has been hoping he would find his truebond for a long time and now that he has found her, how will he keep her safe and alive despite Shane Dunne’s prophecy? Especially, when she does crazy things; like rushing in to save a Red Cap’s life.

I am so glad this was one of the books that I was reading ‘for me’ because I got to really enjoy it my first time reading it. And I have to ask, how in the world does Dana write bedroom scenes that make even my phone (where my reading app is located) get all steamy? Wow, I think need to buy a fan to keep on hand when reading the bedroom scenes.

Even though Dana’s attention the detail is nearly flawless most of the time I need to know who is really older Shane or Leo? They seem to trade off being the older sibling from one book to the next. Other than that the characters vibrant personalities carry over from one book to the next consistently. I really enjoyed reading Robin’s reaction to Michaela’s head long rush into what he perceived as dangerous situations and her ability to manipulate him into her getting her way.

Favorite Quote
“I’m certain thousands live in fear of your mighty fists of death.”—Robin

Book Cover Rating
I really do like the cover. The clothes are something I could picture the hob wearing, although I think if the Hob were posing for a picture, he would have a more mischievous grin on his face to mask his more serious side but then again when you look at the fact that he is Oberon’s Blade this picture does fit best with the story line.

Book Blurb Rating
When I read the books blurb, I could sense that it is well thought out and worded in a way to give you just enough teasers to wet the imagination and get you excited about reading the book.

Book Blurb
When the Black Queen kidnaps one of the White Queen’s nephews, Robin Goodfellow is sent to ensure that the young prince safely returns to the bosom of his family. True to his role as Oberon’s Hobgoblin, he is ready for anything…except meeting his truebond, the very delicious, very human Michaela Exton.

Michaela has dreamed about a flame-haired rogue named Robin Goodfellow since she was a little girl, but everyone knows Puck doesn’t really exist. In real life, it’s a dark-eyed man named Ringo who makes her heart beat faster.

She is closer to her dream man than she thinks, and nobody knows it better than Robin, who wears the guise of Ringo. But there’s competition for her love in the form of Lord Raven, who holds a secret that will rock the foundation of Robin’s world. As a Black Court delegate does the unthinkable, leaving an enraged, grief-stricken Robin hanging onto his humanity by a thread, only Michaela has the power to bring him back from the killing edge—if she survives.

Noble Blood (Gray Court #2) by Dana Marie Bell


January 18, 2011
Samhain Publishing
Author’s Page

I finished the book last night and I sure hope someone decides to make movies out of this series and that whoever does make said movie remains true to the books, I hate how Hollywood tends butcher good books on film.

Tri-Bond way cool bet no one saw that coming 😉 and in the last book I was feeling so bad for Bunnicula (sorry I really like that nickname). Duncan, Jaden and Moira sure are getting a lot of curveballs thrown at them but they roll so well with the punches, oh yeah and where can I get a pet salamander, I really want one, but instead of seeming into a German Sheppard can mine turn into a lap dog like a Shih Tzu?

I think that Dana Marie Bell did a great job of transferring characters from one book to the next without even the remotest change to their personalities. I have read some books where there was nothing but inconsistency from one book to the next. But I found no inconsistency only progression, for example you could tell that Moira was hanging out with her new sister-in-law, Ruby because her nickname for Jaden came up, but that one just has to stick because it fits him so well. It will be fun to see how the next book turns out on my second reading of it.

Favorite Quotes (I know this is rare for me but these are pretty cool):

“You know, the three g’s.” –Moira
“Get in, get off, get to the z’s.” –Moira

Favorite new acronym:
“You are going to be a pita, aren’t you?”—Jaden
Pita=pain in the ass

So, in short this is an awesome story about the Fae world and generally I am not a big fan of Fae stories but this series is definitely an exception to that rule and well worth reading.

Book’s Blurb
For Lord Duncan Malmayne, it was love at first sight with his true bond, the lovely half-Sidhe, half-leprechaun Moira Dunne. Yet something is missing from his relationship with the fiery redhead, something that prevents him from completing the Claiming and making Moira his forever.

As problems multiply in what should be a magical, idyllic time, the depression weighing on Moira s Sidhe heart signals a potentially devastating condition. Mate sickness. Her instinct tells her what s missing:

Jaden Blackthorn, Gray Court vampire, Duncan s bond brother and closest friend who tactfully withdrew from their lives after Duncan declared his love.

Jaden is both heartbroken and elated that the two people he loves most in the world are together. It s best he cut off all contact to give them space to complete the Claiming. But trouble is brewing in the Malmayne clan, and when Jaden s forced back into their lives by the Hob, their extremely rare tribond clicks with a reaction that s swift, sensual and all-consuming.

But not everyone looks upon it as a blessing. In fact, the price of their love could be a potentially fatal shift of power Warning: This book contains explicit sex, graphic language, and M/M/F love scenes between a Sidhe lord, a vampire and a leprechaun. And no, that s not the start of a dirty joke no matter what my Beta readers said.