Monday, December 5, 2011

Fics of the Week 12/1 - 12/7/2011: reviews are up!

Every week, we share with you what stories we are reading and enjoying. Most of the stories we feature each week are stories published this year, but sometimes, we feature some retro recs (stories we have featured before) to give those fics a shot at fic of the month again and to let those stories be known to our new followers we gain each week as well.
This week we have a fantastic retro rec for you,
 along with some super sweet feature recs. 

No matter what we feature, we guarantee you that you will find a good rec here. Don't forget to click our Award Winning Fics page to see ALL of the TLS fic of the week features!

TLS Fics of the Week 12/1 - 12/7/2011

A Four Letter Word by TeamEdwardAlways-rec'd by Kitty Vuitton
Bella has crushed on her BFF, Edward, since high school; always knowing they were only friends. What happens when she finds "the one" to marry? Will Edward remain her BFF or will their relationship take a turn? AH/OOC/some usual & unusual pairings. Twilight - Rated: M

Reviewed By: Kitty Vuitton

Webster's Dictionary defines love as- (1): strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties maternal love for a child(2): attraction based on sexual desire : affection and tenderness felt by lovers(3): affection based on admiration, benevolence, or common interests love for his old schoolmates

The first chapter of A Four Letter Word sets as a futuretake on Bella’s wedding day.  Edward is Bella’s best friend…and he has finally decided to tell her just how he feels about her…on her wedding day…to Mike Newton.  Yes you read correctly.

But don’t let that scare you away just yet.

We then jump into the heart of the story, backtracking 1.5 years earlier.  Its Halloween time, and Bella and Edward are off to a costume party, although Edward would rather not go since he is dressing as Tarzan to Bella’s Jane costume.  While he is moaning and groaning about his outfit, Bella is thinking back to her high school days and her crush that she had on Edward.

I stare a little longer than I probably should be Edward is more than perfect in the barely-there loin cloth. His chest is sculpted and chiseled as if made from marble: the ripple of his muscles, the faint outline of a six-pack on his stomach, the v-shaped dip that is just exposed by the low riding material. His arms are slightly flexed, exposing the muscles that working out for hours has created.
Edward and I have been best friends since we met eight years ago in our junior year of high. Of course I thought he was gorgeous then and developed a little crush on him, but it never evolved into anything more. Edward never looked at me as anything other than his best friend. So, I simply suppressed my crush and moved on.
I shake my head and laugh at myself.
He's your best friend, stupid, and you are no longer in high school.
I can't help but wonder if things between us would be different now if I had said something back then. Probably not. I was never Edward's type. He always went for the leggy blondes, and that is so not me. I have long brown hair, and I am quite short. Not his type at all.

Jake and Seth are throwing the Halloween party, and have to be one of the most hilarious gay couples I’ve ever read.  Add their friend Alice to the mix, and trouble and mischief is always brewing.  During the party, both Edward and Bella are forced to partake in a costume contest, which results in Bella meeting Mike Newton.  I have to say, I am no fan of Mikes, both in Twilight and FF, but this Mike really is sweet and completely smitten with Bella.  Of course the feelings are mutual for her as well.  She believes she could never land her dream guy, Edward, so she forces herself to move on.  The thing is, Edward feels the same way for Bella, but is just to scared to admit it to her; instead playing bodyguard to her all throughout their friendship.

I turn my head and follow Jacob's gaze, and that's when I see Bella—and she's not alone.
I feel my muscles coil, my fists clench at my sides.
Who the fuck is that guy with her? I don't like the way he's looking at her. I don't like the way she's reacting to him. Why the fuck is he so close to her? Doesn't he know about fucking personal space? I knew I shouldn't leave her alone. As soon as I do, this creep descends upon her, preying on her vulnerability, her shyness, her naivety. I will do some serious damage to his pretty little face.
"Are you jealous, Tarzalicious?" Jacob asks, wiggling his eyebrows, while Seth is taking some deep breaths, eyes closed.
"No, I'm not jealous. Why do people keep asking that? Anyway, I'm just really protective of Bella. We've been through a lot together. She's my best friend, and I would do anything for her," I easily admit.
They both just stare at me all dreamy-eyed like.
Are they swooning?
Oh, my God, I think they're fucking swooning.
"I just don't want to see Bella get hurt. She deserves all the happiness in the world, and as her best friend, it's my job, my duty, to see that she gets it. So if some guy at a party is out for a 'wham, bam, thank you ma'am', he's sorely mistaken, because Bella deserves more than that."
Unfortunately, as time fly, all good things must come to an end, but in this case, it is Bella’s friendship with Edward that takes a turn for the worse.  He cannot seem to accept that Mike is good enough for Bella and she is angry at his overprotective, big brother act.

Of course best friends can’t stay angry at each other for too long, and Edward and Bella finally mend their friendship.  But, can things really ever go back to the way they were?  We know from both of them that they have feelings for each other, but both are too afraid to act on them. And now, with Mike in the picture, does Edward really have a chance to tell Bella how he feels?  The prologue showed us that he waits until the worst possible moment, but it doesn’t show us how Bella reacts! I for one cannot wait to continue reading.

Creature of Habit by EZRocksAngel-rec'd by Memphis Lamb
Bella begins working for the elusive and distant Edward Cullen who she discovers is hiding behind an elaborate charade to maintain his secret lifestyle. Bella is determined to find out the mysteries of Edward Cullen but with what results? AU, OOC. Twilight - Rated: M

Reviewed By: Obsmama

We all love a good mysterious Edward, throw in a philanthropic billionaire CEO and you have the attention of many a fic reader. What makes this one different? He’s a vampire and his singer has just been hired to be his personal assistant. Her scent drives him mad days before they even meet as she’s hired to work inside his home while hes at the office, she’s training for the meticulous job of taking care of his personal and professional needs. He lives a peculiarly regimented life and one Bella Swan turns on its head.

Hours later I stood in the shadows listening to the sounds of the night as a slight breeze whispered across my face.
Fingering the key in my pocket, I rubbed the grooves over and over, memorizing the pattern.
It was late. And the apartment was quiet except for the sounds of sleep. Angela was tucked in her bed and was dreaming of the young man she met earlier tonight. She was content, unaware of the horrors her roommate had suffered hours earlier.
I couldn't hear Isabella's mind of course, but I could hear her steady breaths and evenly paced heartbeat.
Once again I was at a loss. I was standing outside her apartment, key in hand, desperate to see her. To check on her and make sure she was okay.
But I knew she was okay. I could hear her breaths. Her home was locked and safe. I'd delivered her there myself hours before.
I needed to see her.
I slipped the key into the lock and silently twisted the knob until I felt the click of the chambers as they released.
I moved inside, shut the door and quietly replaced the key on Isabella's key ring by the door.
Standing in the middle of the room, I inhaled deeply and relished the fire that scorched my throat. The burning fire was harsh and painful but it signaled the one thing I wanted.
I choked back the venom and continued to inhale deep, rhythmic breaths of delicious, mouthwatering flowers.
Crossing the living room, I walked directly to her room, pausing for a moment to assess my resolve.
I was sure I wouldn't hurt her. I couldn't. It was now my job to keep her safe.
A thin sliver of light traveled across her face as I opened the door to her room. She was in her bed, lying on her side, tangled in a mass of sheets. Her hair was tangled and snarled, splayed across the pillow, and her hands were clenched under her chin, balled into tiny fists. Her bruised wrist was glowing with heat in the dark.
I picked up the blouse she had worn that evening and pushed it to my nose, burying myself in her exquisite aroma.
I found another shirt on her dresser and inhaled.
Isabella shifted in the bed, rolling to the opposite side, moaning slightly. I dropped the shirt and froze.
I watched her lips and waited, the pink tint visible to my eyes in the dark. I was holding my breath now, unnecessarily straining to hear that sound escape her lips again. It only took a moment before another low whimper left her mouth.
I was instantly flooded with desire.
My body, not my mouth.

It’s a fantastic love story at the heart with plenty of mystery and intrigue to keep the reader invested. I feel almost like this story is a right of passage in the fandom at the very least one of my fave vampwards. He has such a richness to his character. There is also a multitude of humor interlaced with this story that left me laughing out loud. It’s for sure a story to be cherished by a incredible writer in our community.

Slowly closing his eyes, he pressed his forehead to mine, his oversized hands gripping my hips. Quietly, he whispered, "You can't love me that much."
I wound my arms around his neck, tugging him impossibly closer as I assured. "I love you more than that." He winced at my words and weakly attempted to push me away.
"I don't know if I can inflict this life on someone else. I'm sorry, Bella. It's because I love you so much that I have to do this."
I lifted his face and forced his gaze to mine. His eyes were despondent and cold. His hair was wild, like his moods, and everything about him was painfully, devastatingly beautiful. He was truly the most exquisite creature I'd ever laid eyes on. And until this night, I had held him in my grasp. Finding the last bit of conviction I could manage, I challenged, "If you love me. Show me." I watched in horror as he began to shake his head, which made my pulse race, betraying my emotions. "You can leave me, but not before you show me you love me," I begged, desperation consuming my words and every rational thought.
Comprehending, he insisted. "It's wrong. It's not safe."
"Fuck wrong. Fuck safe." I threw myself at him, gripping the thin, worn material of his shirt. His eyes had grown fierce at my challenge and I felt myself slipping, clinging to him like my hands to the fabric covering his chest. Lacing my fingers in his thick bronze hair, I pulled his head towards me and breathed lowly in his ear, "Fuck. Me."

Substance Clad in Shadows by Hollelujah-rec'd by Kitty Vuitton
Bella's only release comes in the form of distantly orbiting the life of Edward Cullen. As with any addiction, however, she's always left wanting more. "Mad is a term we use to describe a man who is obsessed with one idea and nothing else." Ugo Betti
Twilight - Rated: M

Reviewed By: vampshavelaws

I was so excited when asked to write a review for substance clad in shadows (a Carlton dancing gif may or may not have been used).

hollelujah has created a story you can’t help but become absorbed in. It’s smart and incredibly well written: interesting and shrouded in mystery and suspense. And let’s not forget a little bit of crazy, the very good kind that instantly grabs your attention.

From the very first chapter we get a sense of who Bella is; a sense of what she thinks she is. She describes herself as mad—naturally you immediately want to click that ‘next’ button to find out more.

"'Mad,'" Ugo Betti once said, "is a term we use to describe a man who is obsessed with one idea and nothing else."

 I am mad.

 Stark, barking mad.

 Mad enough to strip myself, just for the sake of it, of the world and its expectations.

 Mad enough to revel in the minute-to-minute of my existence.

 Mad enough to be free.

 Mad enough to follow.

Mad enough to follow him.

I'm mad, but I'm not alone.

Because everyone worships something.

Everyone eats, drinks, dies—

Everyone does.

And there's only one difference between me

and Them:

I've already picked my poison.

And that poison just happens to be a certain green-eyed character we all love: Edward.

"How long have you fixated on Mr. Cullen?" Dr. Cope asks benignly.

"Two months, two weeks and four days."

If she's impressed at the quickness with which I respond, she hides it well. Her bland expression is
as unremarkable as the earth-toned walls of her office. Why this horrible non-color? I wonder.

Surely crazy people aren't sent into hysterics by a little splash of color.

"That's a significant amount of time, Isabella."

"I agree."

She makes a small 'hm' sound in her throat as she writes. A younger me would have wondered what she was scribbling on that notepad, its yellow pages the only object of any color in the office.

"Have you ever approached him? Or followed him?"

"Are you going to report me if I say yes?"

"I can only report you if you're engaging in criminal or harmful behavior," she replies, non-plussed.

"Have you engaged in either of those?"

"I haven't," I answer.

Only time will tell if an unspoken 'yet' can apply.

Needless to say we get that ‘yet’. And so, so much more.

Bella’s fixation leads her to absorb herself in his daily life, appearing in places she knows he’ll be, watching from afar, and eventually, from not so afar.

I order assertively, ignoring the fact that there are only four inches between the forearms of me
and Edward Cullen.

He doesn't seem to notice, though, continuing to examine the ice cubes in his glass like they're giving him a rundown of the Bull and the Bear.

"Rough day?" I ask, like speaking to him isn't something I've devoted countless moments of planning. Predatory, Dr. Cope would say.

He looks up, confusion and surprise wrinkling his forehead. "Excuse me?"

"I asked if you're having a bad day. You're frowning."

His frown deepens. "Sorry, have we met?"

"I'm Bella."

"Bella." He seems to roll the name around in his mouth, testing it for hints of familiarity. "Who are you here with?"

"I came alone."

Everything progresses from this moment. She gets her guy; is cruel, calm and collected. A game of cat and mouse where she is anything but the victim.

I've waited. I've waited so long and the coldness retreats into the background as I melt, I melt, I melt. The fire is a dangerous servant, a fearful master and it overtakes me, its flames licking us both as I taste him.

"You brought me here to fuck me," I whisper into his mouth, and he huffs a soft laugh, thrusting up into my hand.
We have a winner," he retorts.

He's hard, his chest rising and falling rapidly, his pupils dilated as he stares longingly into my face.

He's played his game, as I am playing mine, and he thinks he's about to claim his prize.

With a yank, I cruelly twist my hand around him, the flames climbing higher inside as he gasps, as his smirk melts into a flinch and his face transforms into something else, something startled.

"Shit," he yelps, and grows harder in my grasp.

"Good boy," I murmur.

Prim, pretty thing, he'd whispered into my hair, and I'd smiled.

But now I'm going to make him scream.

But then Edward isn’t as cut and dry as the others. And neither is their relationship. She allows him things she would never have allowed the ones before him. She lies to herself.

His breath is hot through my fingers as he presses his lips to my palm, presses my back to the wall.

"You're not really leaving," he states. "How could you leave this?"

You're nothing to me, I almost tell him, and he sees it in my eyes.

He smirks. "Keep telling yourself you're in control, if it helps. But you're in this as deep as I am."

His manner is too familiar, too intimate and in control and my lips part, my nails dig into him as I wonder how I will punish him for his cockiness, his calm.

"I am in control," I inform him coldly, raking my nails down the back of his neck. He hisses in pain.

"I could hurt you back."

"I'm a woman half your size," I retort. "Surely I'm too small, too weak to be considered a worthy opponent."

We stare at each other, mingling breaths and gazes and the hum of energy that snaps between us like a charge, a live wire, a white-bright, frightening thing. His eyes are green glass, brittle and brash, dilated and fixed on my own.

"Like a mirror," he breathes.

I open my mouth to demand an explanation, but his lips descend and the question is one more thing I will take care of after I'm done with him.

Bella’s had experience with this before though, luring men in until she can take that very thing she wants. Sex is a weapon. She makes them weak to conquer something within herself...  prove to the world that she’s not her mother, all the while ignoring the whispers from the walls that tell her she’s crazy. And maybe she is. But she's also human. And everything is done for a reason.

Bella’s past is shrouded in mystery. How did she get to this place in her life? What was she like as a child? What the hell is in that box? What did she see in that maze? Those are the questions tumbling around in my head when reading.

Bella’s back story is just as important and integral to the story, and the way in which the past is juxtaposed with the present works so well. Everything ties in, and new pieces of the puzzle start to slot into place. Nothing is coincidental or done by chance.

I seriously love this Bella. She’s so extreme; so different from the Mary Sue we all know. She’s patient and crazy intelligent, and always in control. And underneath is just like the rest of us. What girl doesn’t want to be loved? Who isn’t afraid of that?

There is so much more I could say, but the very best part about this story is the suspense, the secrets kept in enticing mazes to childlike eyes.

It’s swiftly become one of my favourite stories, and is one I know I’ll read time and time again once finished.

Read and pass on to your friends, share your theories (trust me, you will have many).

And most importantly, leave some love for one of the most exciting fics written this year. You won’t be disappointed.

The Art Teacher by Spanglemaker9-rec'd by Nic
He gave me art and words and passion and life, but all I wanted was him.
Twilight - Rated: M

Reviewed By: primarycolors

I am a lucky girl... I am a lucky girl...

That's what high school senior Isabella Dwyer tells herself when she inevitably feels swallowed up by her new life, by the rich kids at the Academy who have always had life handed to them, by her social-climbing mother and her step-father, and the expectations that Isabella simply fall in line with the ranks of the other mindless, cookie cutter debutantes. She even feels smothered by herself, because she can't seem to find a way out.

Don't make a scene.

Do what's expected.

Learn that you don't need love when you have lust, money and status.

But then there's The Art Teacher.

Isabella's gray world is suddenly thrown into color. Artist Edward Cullen fascinates her... he's beautiful and charismatic, talented and driven, and he sees her, really sees her... right from the beginning. But he's the instructor and she's the student. He's a struggling artist, she's on the fast track to a lush life, complete with a disinterested husband, empty friendships and spa treatments and too much vodka. Their relationship seems doomed from the start. But that's when everything gets good.

Edward Cullen becomes the turning point in Isabella's life.

To say that I love this story is an understatement. Everything spanglemaker9 writes is infused with humor and creativity, with all the emotional realism to make you feel like you're there, falling in love, flustered when he doesn't call, heartbroken, that bliss when he shows up on the doorstep unannounced to say he can't live without you.

She consistently writes characters tailor-made to hit all my flutter buttons. The dialogue is always fresh and genuine, never rambling. Her tiny visual details speckled in with her sweeping big picture is just... well, sublime. As a reader it makes me giddy for more. As an author? To be honest, a little jealous!

The Art Teacher is more than a love story between Edward and Bella. It's a lesson on finding true happiness, finding the courage to be the kind of person that makes a difference... understanding that independence and loving who you are inside are gifts you can give to yourself, worth more than all the money in the world.

If you've already read The Art Teacher, read it one more time... you'll appreciate it all over again. And if you haven't? What are you waiting for? You can thank me later.

It was an honor to write a review for one of my very favorite authors! Be sure to leave spanglemaker9 lots of heartfelt, gushy reviews. She loves them, and I know they make her day. :)

Turning Tables by Jtmd24-rec'd by Jaime Arkin/Nic
Best friends, together through thick and thin. He saw her first, but his friend had the guts. When everything changes, how long will they pretend? You can't change the past, but you can take hold of a future that was meant to be yours. AU/AH  Twilight - Rated: M

Reviewed By:  Jo FicFreak

If you’ve heard of JT, you probably found her, like me, when she was writing “The Vagina Monologues”.   Many of you were most likely lucky enough to have found her even before this wonderfully hilarious and well told story about a woman impregnated by Edward Cullen during a one night stand.

But I digress.

Because this review isn’t about JT’s snark and wit and superbly funny previous story.

It’s about her latest fantastical WIP, “Turning Tables.”

Love triangle with a twist. Check.

High security secret mission.  Check.

Bad ass mofo’s working together to find out the real story behind the suspicious “death” of a loved one.  Check chekity check checkalicious steamy relationship gonna happen.

I peeped in on JT’s story list on, it appears she has written mostly humor before this story and I for one, am SO GLAD she ventured out to explore more drama because the way she weaves this tale of intrigue and deceit… action and adventure… lost trust and renewed love… omfg she just captured me from day one.

My take:  Bella is in college, meets these two cute boys and even though her eye is on the much sexier one who looks like he might be having the same thoughts, his friend beats him to the punch and asks her out… cue the life changing moment where Bella regrets saying yes.

He wore faded jeans that hung low on his hips and a long-sleeved grey Hollister shirt. His back-pack was flung over one shoulder, and he absently nodded his head at something his friend said, never taking his eyes off of her.

She forced herself to break the eye contact before she did something completely out of character. His friend was just as good looking but a few inches shorter. His presence didn't seem to command the room like his friend's, but his smile lit up his entire face and oddly enough, put her at ease. She glanced back and forth between them and smiled, thinking about how she was never lucky enough to have one, let alone two hot guys looking at her.

Her smile grew as they both made their way over to her table.

She'd always think back to that moment over the coming years and wonder what would have happened if things had been different. If only one of them had come into the coffee shop that day or if she had said no to that first date.

The relationship lasts years but JT starts us off at a moment in time where the guy Bella picked (Riley, btw)… goes missing.  Thought to be dead (I’m not particularly convinced he is yet, though).  See he and Edward are (clears throat a little) Navy Seals, this we knew from the beginning but when Edward decides to go look for his best friend and Bella’s “fiancĂ©”, who apparently has been working some crazy secret missions without anyone realizing it… that’s when we find out that Bella had a little secret of her own.

Another snippet:

"I'm going to the Dominican Republic. I leave tomorrow at oh-eight-hundred."
Edward watched the color drain from Bella's face and wished like hell he wasn't doing this to her right now. She'd been through so much and this was just another burden she was going to have to deal with.

Bella shook her head back and forth in denial when Edward told her he was going...there. He couldn't. Why would he do this to her? She couldn't lose him too.

She'd never survive it.

I’m not gonna give away what her secret is, you’ll just have to read it to find out for yourself.

{smiles innocently} what?

The bonus is that JT writes this one in the third person so we get to see a LOT more of what’s going on all in one chapter and her sense of humor is not lost on the seriousness of the situation within this fic.  Bella and Edward banter like never before and the sexual tension… well, it gets me all riled up, if ya know what I’m sayin’.

It’s a push and pull, twist and turn, up and down with emotions fic that will have you dying for more from JT and she’s one superb human being, to boot.

Go check her out and leave this woman some lovin’.  She deserves it.

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