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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Review & Author Guest Post: The Better to See You by Kate SeRine

Title: The Better to See You
Author: Kate SeRine
Series: Transplanted Tales, book 2
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Kensington Publishing
Source: Review copy from publisher
Format: E-book
“Once upon a time, a spell went awry and Make Believe characters were cast into the ordinary world. And the results aren’t always happily ever after… 
Everyone thinks fairy godmothers can do no wrong. But if not for a certain spell mis-cast by Lavender Seelie, Cinderella’s former fairy godmother, the Tales would not be stuck in the Here and Now. Fortunately for Lavender, she’s about to get a second chance at a happy ending… 
The Refuge, a sanctuary for wayward Tales, seems like the perfect place for Lavender to start a new life—especially when she discovers an unexpected ally in Seth, the brooding werewolf who’s been typecast as a villain ever since his run in with Little Red Riding Hood. But when humans from nearby towns start turning up dead, their bodies mutilated with archaic Tale symbols, Lavender wonders if Seth’s deep sensuality has blinded her to the truth. And that distraction could put innocent lives in danger. Including her own…” 
The Better to See You is the second book in the Transplanted Tales series by Kate Serine.

Once upon a time there was a very cocky Fairy Godmother (Lavender); one day while showing off her powers one of her spells went awry casting the characters of Make Believe (Tales) to the world of Here and Now. After such a disaster this Fairy Godmother is hated by most. Not knowing how to cope with these new feelings of failure and loneliness the Fairy Godmother finds solace for many years in the bottom of the bottle, until one day when she finds a friend in Red. With her friendship Red shows her that there are still people that care for her and that she could do a lot better with her life. With the new gained trust this Fairy Godmother leaves the bottle behind and starts to work on herself.

The Better to See You starts one year after the events in Red. Lavender realizes that being sober is not enough, to get the life she really wants she also needs to get away from the people that don’t help her with this new goal in life. This realization leads her to breaking up with her protégée Cinderella and her husband Prince Charming. The only problem is that Lavender’s magic is still wonky and she does to Prince Charming something that could get her in trouble. Red comes back to her rescue and suggests she takes some time off while moods are calmed. She recommends her to go to The Refuge; The Refuge is a town where Tales who can’t find a place in society go to live. Wanting a new change in life Lavender accepts the offers and heads to a new start, what she didn’t know was that Red was sending her to the arms of Seth “Big Bad” Wolf.
Seth has live in The Refuge for a year, tired of being the bad guy in the story Seth went to The Refuge to start a new life like many of his residents have done before.
The last person Seth expected to see on his doorstep was Lavender Seelie, but knowing she is alone and in need of protection makes it impossible for him to reject her. What Seth wasn’t expecting was to find a kindred soul in Lavender. Now that he has found a woman that brings peace to his heart he will do his best to keep her safe, especially now that somebody wants to implicate her in some gruesome murders that are happening in The Refuge.

After meeting Seth and Lavender in Red (first book) I wasn’t so sure about their pairing, and now after reading The Better to See You the only thing I can say is: Mrs. SeRine you are brilliant!

Seth and Lavender are both tortured souls, they have had difficult lives and people don’t like them because of their past and the mistakes they have done in their lives, but both are ready to start new lives with a clean slate, and what better person to start with than with somebody who understands you and knows how you feel because he/she feels the same way. That was the case of Seth and Lavender, they both do not believe they a worth much because they judge themselves harshly for their errors in life, but know they have found each other and in their arms they find the solace they have been looking for years in the wrong places.

Lavender is sweet, smart, and very caring; she feels really bad for what her actions have caused and takes full responsibility for her actions. For years she has punished herself for her irresponsibility, but now is ready to give herself a break and do the best with what life has given her.

Seth is a dreamy hero with a dark and sad past. He has suffered for years for his actions and didn’t think he deserved a second chance until Lavender came to his life. Now that he has found her he will cherish her and would do everything in his hands to keep her safe. Seth loves to take care of Lavender and loves to cook for her. He is a complete package, a swoon worthy hero.

The romance was a bit fast, sometimes I have a problem with that but I think in Lavender and Seth’s case it worked perfectly with their story. They sizzled the pages when they are together. They are not only a super sexy couple but also a very funny and entertaining one.

In The Better to See You we also see characters from previous book; we see how Red and Nate are doing and what is going on with their lives. We also see Trish, with her Mrs. SeRine gives us a preamble of what is to come in next book of the series, Along Came a Spider. Along Came a Spider will be Trish Muffet and Nicky Blue’s story. Needless to say I’m really looking forward to their book.

After loving Red (first book) I can honestly say that I had big expectations for The Better to See You, I’m very glad to inform you that in not only met my expectations but it surpassed them.
Mrs. SeRine has created a very smart, funny and ingenious new series that with each book it only gets better and better. She took our favorite tales and stories and made them hers, giving us not only very unique stories but highly entertaining at that.

I can recommend you enough this book and this series. The Better to See You can be read as a stand-alone, but I recommend you to read Red first. As I said before I’m eagerly waiting for the release of next book in the series, Along Came a Spider.

My Verdict: 5 Paws

Other books in the series
The Better to See You
Along Came a Spider

Other reviews Goodreads

Kate SeRine is here today with us sharing one of Lavender’s favorite recipes. It looks so heavenly delicious that I can’t wait to make it. Let me know what you think? 

In THE BETTER TO SEE YOU (Transplanted Tales #2), Seth “Big Bad” Wolf bakes a scrumptious chocolate raspberry torte to woo his lady love, Lavender Seelie. (*wink, wink*) Although Seth will no longer share that particular recipe with anyone and now makes the dessert only for Lavender, I have it on good authority that Lav loves anything with a chocolate/raspberry flavor combination and that the following delectable treat is another of her favorites. Enjoy!  --Kate SeRine

Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Pie*

You will need dough for a 9-inch pie crust. If using a frozen pie crust, be sure to thaw prior to baking.

4 cups fresh raspberries
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
2/3 cup whipping cream
5 oz. (5 squares) semi-sweet chocolate, melted
4 oz. (4 squares) unsweetened chocolate, melted
2 egg yolks
2 tablespoons raspberry syrup**
2 tablespoons almond extract/water mixture (2 tsp almond extract; 4 tsp water)***

**Can substitute 2 tablespoons raspberry liqueur
***Can substitute 2 tablespoons amaretto
(Seth makes the non-alcoholic version for Lavender.)

1 1/3 cups whipping cream
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
chocolate curls/shavings
whole fresh raspberries

Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake pie crust for 9 to 11 minutes or until light golden brown. Set aside to cool completely.

To prepare the raspberry sauce, press 4 cups of fresh raspberries through a strainer to make 1 cup of raspberry puree. Make sure the strainer is a tight mesh to keep seeds from slipping through. Discard the seeds. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and cream of tartar, blending well. Stir in the raspberry puree. Bring to a boil over medium heat and continue boiling for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, cover and refrigerate.

In a medium saucepan, combine the condensed milk and 2/3 cup whipping cream. Over medium heat, bring the mixture to a boil. Remove from heat; cool 5 minutes. In a large bowl, combine the milk mixture and melted chocolates; beat with electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add egg yolks; beat 15 seconds. Add raspberry syrup and almond extract/water mixture; beat until smooth (about 30 seconds).

Pour the mixture into a large bowl; set over ice. Stir for 5 to 7 minutes or until the mixture is cool. Beat with electric mixer on highest speed for 2 to 3 minutes until soft peaks form. Pour into the cooled pie crust and refrigerate for about 1 hour.

After the pie has sufficiently cooled, beat 1 1/3 cups of whipping cream in a small bowl until soft peaks form. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla and beat until stiff peaks form. Spread the toping over the cooled pie filling. Garnish with chocolate shavings and whole raspberries and refrigerate. Remove the pie from the refrigerator about 1 hour before serving and let it slowly come up to room temperature. Slice and serve with raspberry sauce drizzled over the top.

*Many thanks to Jessica Schulz for sharing a version of this recipe with me.

About Kate SeRine

Kate SeRine (pronounced “serene”) faithfully watched weekend monster movie marathons while growing up, each week hoping that maybe this time the creature du jour would get the girl. But every week she was disappointed. So when she began writing her own stories, Kate vowed that her characters would always have a happily ever after. And, thus, her love for paranormal romance was born. 

Kate is a member of Romance Writers of America and of Indiana RWA and has been a finalist in the Fire and Ice Contest (2010), the Finally a Bride Contest (2010), and The Emily (2012). She is represented by Nicole Resciniti with the Seymour Agency.

Kate lives in a smallish, quintessentially Midwestern town with her husband and two sons, who share her love of storytelling. She never tires of creating new worlds to share and is even now working on her next project. 


  1. Pie..pie!!!!! I so want some sugar right now

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Blodeuedd! Doesn't that pie sound delicious? :)

    2. Linda, You need sugar and you need to read these books, like yesterday.

  2. I love The Transplanted Tales. RED was so much fun and I'm currently reading THE BETTER TO SEE YOU. Wishing Kate SeRine the best and congratulating her on her talents.

    1. I can't wait to hear what you think when you finish The Better to See You.

  3. Kate,
    Can't wait to read TBTSY 'cause I loved RED! And the pie looks beyond yummy :-) Did you have trailer/s made for the books? Would love to take a peek if so.
    Best to you and your wonderful series,


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