This is the second book in Ms. Cassidy's The Recovery Men trilogy about three ex-Navy SEAL friends encountering woman-related trouble. Not the usual t...moreThis is the second book in Ms. Cassidy's The Recovery Men trilogy about three ex-Navy SEAL friends encountering woman-related trouble. Not the usual trouble of the feminine nature, someone wants these gals dead and its up to the boys to figure out who and why.
Brianna "Bree" Waverly is the darling of Hollywood and a paparazzi magnet. When she is almost stabbed in a nigh club, her father fears it has something to do with a mall project he's involved in and decides to call in reinforcements. Brianna is on her way home to Kansas City, so he asks Troy Sinclair, one of the three owners of Recovery Inc. to act as her bodyguard.
Reluctantly, Troy agrees to accept the assignment as a personal favor to the old man, though he despises the life Brianna's living in Hollywood and knows he'll be having a hard time shadowing the spoiled little princess, whom someone wants dead with a vengeance.
Another dud. Though I liked Brianna more than I did the previous heroine - at least Bree saw the world for what it truly was and didn't live in some fantasy landscape in her head - she still "rubbed me the wrong way". I can't put my finger on what truly bothered me, but it just didn't click for me.
Troy was the annoying one in this book. His stubborn refusal to see beyond the tabloid-painted picture of Brianna, his thinly veiled contempt and insults...They simply spoke of an obnoxious jerk and certainly didn't create a credible picture of him as a SEAL, jumping to conclusions without hard evidence or proof. What's even more sad, he refused to listen to reason even after it became evident there was more to the girl than the headlines and made-up articles in the magazines. Maybe this was meant to create tension between the characters, give Troy more depth or something, but it accomplished the opposite for me. I just wanted to choke him and find a more "sensible" guy for Brianna.
Again, the villain eluded me all along, once again providing the only saving grace for this story, the rest was just "meh".(less)
Cute and sweet short seasonal contemporary romance. Not too engaging, not to dull. Average, but still sweet, guaranteed to get you into Xmas spirit ev...moreCute and sweet short seasonal contemporary romance. Not too engaging, not to dull. Average, but still sweet, guaranteed to get you into Xmas spirit even in the last day of August.(less)
A bit sweet, and a lot short. Could've been longer, a more developped. Could've had a better heroine and a hero a little faster on the uptake. Still,...moreA bit sweet, and a lot short. Could've been longer, a more developped. Could've had a better heroine and a hero a little faster on the uptake. Still, pretty good to spend that half-hour before having to get ready for the New Years Eve party.(less)
What a ‘weird’ little story—especially in the character department—but surprisingly good. Both H/h had emotional issues, loads of baggage, and quite a...moreWhat a ‘weird’ little story—especially in the character department—but surprisingly good. Both H/h had emotional issues, loads of baggage, and quite a few ‘masking’ techniques and they were absolutely great together. Oh, the tension, oh, the attraction, oh, the sexy scenes...But they kept pushing each other away, pulling each other closer, pushing each other away...Make up your mind people!
Also, great suspense sub-plot. Murder attempts, arson, trying to burn people alive, trying to blow up people...And the real villain came as a complete surprise. Good one, Ms. Gideon.
This was a great little story once I got used to the whole push-pull, emotional baggage laden main relationship.
On a side note; I never thought of high-tops as particularly sexy footwear, but somehow black high-tops with dangling laces on Xander truly seemed the height of hotness.(less)
Waking up after two hundred years in a body that is not yours is disconcerting. Even more disconcerting is finding a woman who is a dead ringer for yo...moreWaking up after two hundred years in a body that is not yours is disconcerting. Even more disconcerting is finding a woman who is a dead ringer for your long dead fiancée. She smells the same, she tastes the same, she responds to you the same, only your reaction is much more potent.
Well, that's what happened to Captain Sullivan Fouquet when he opened his eyes in the hospital. He learned from his best friend that up until three months ago has been a ghost, that the man, Fire Chief Andre Sullivan, who's body he now owned was actually dead and Sully was back to witness the two-hundred-year-old curse come to an end, by seeing the last descendant of Lord Henry Sullivan die.
Well, it won't be easy, since Elizabeth Hamilton, the woman that looks just like another Elizabeth, the woman Sully loved with all his heart in his previous life, was in town to convince Andre Sullivan to donate his bone marrow to her adopted brother Caleb...Lord Henry Sullivan's last descendant.
Add to it a crazy descendant of a pirate desperately wanting to learn a voudou curse that would make him immortal, Sully's gut-wrenching reaction to Elizabeth, his discovery that the other Elizabeth has probably betrayed him, and the fact the new Elizabeth doesn't believe he truly is Captain Sullivan Fouquet, and Sully is definitely in deep trouble.
I'm all for ghost stories, reincarnation, voodoo, and all other "woo-woo" stuff, but this story somehow wasn't my cup of tea. The characters were too bland, the pacing slow, the story completely out there, the villain didn't seem to know what he wanted...But what grated most of all was the fact the hero himself got on my nerves.
I simply couldn't stand the man. And since I couldn't stand him, I couldn't truly immerse myself in his story and his predicament. He was mercurial, obtuse, vengeful (which I liked, but knew he wouldn't see it through), and sometimes plain stupid.
I just wanted for the story to be over, which, with the whopping page count, wasn't soon enough.
I’m not really into SD stories, but this one was a truly nice surprise. It was a nice combination of a little bit of everything I like in a story – dr...moreI’m not really into SD stories, but this one was a truly nice surprise. It was a nice combination of a little bit of everything I like in a story – drama, suspense, romance, laughter, tears, steam (that last bedroom scene was hot!), and a nice little revenge scheme thrown in for the fun of it.
I don’t particularly like revenge-driven plots in HQ and S books, because they’re usually pretty shallow and fall short. This was different, the hero actually had a pretty good reason for wanting revenge and though his plan was cruel and heartless, I somehow understood him (if not condoned his actions). The guy had lost everything, his wife, his child, his home, his reputation.
But despite his rage and disdain for everything to do with the heroine’s family, there was that little spark, always hovering in the background. It turned him from cruel and heartless bastard intent on revenge into a man that had lost everything, wanted to make the heroine and her family pay, yet he somehow still couldn’t bring himself to go all the way.
Danielle, the heroine, wasn’t your typical SD chick (though, I’m no expert on what makes SD heroines tick). Under her father’s thumb for years, she desperately wanted to get free and took the opportunity Rico offered with both hands. Yet, she was no pushover. She had her goals, she had her vision, and she wanted to live her fantasy life for as long as she could. Because her secret, the last lie and ultimate betrayal, would surely drive him away sooner than he expected.
Their romance was sweet, tender, and slow-blooming, covering all ranges from traumatic-events-inspired friendship of four years ago, to disdain and hate (thanks to Danielle’s little sister), to fury and revenge-driven rage, to tentative companionship and friendship, and ultimately love…With the requisite happy ending of course.
The only thing spoiling this was the predictability of the resolution to the heroine’s dark little secret (like we didn’t see that one coming a mile away!), the villain (though the suspense undertone set everything in motion, the villain and his motivations just didn’t convince me), and the extremely poor editing on some pages (I usually don’t notice that, small and few mistakes don’t bother me, but the sometimes sloppy editing in this story really caught my eye).
A really great story, with two wonderful – and realistic – characters with amazing chemistry. A keeper! 4 ½ stars(less)
I'm giving this one four stars instead of three based solely on the second half of this book. The first half majorly sucked, if you ask me. It was extr...moreI'm giving this one four stars instead of three based solely on the second half of this book. The first half majorly sucked, if you ask me. It was extremely hard to get into this book and the pace seemed (I'm using this word, because maybe it was just me) so slow that any slower and it would've moved backwards.
It started almost right where the last one ended, but the first half definitely lacked the "polish" of Nightkeepers. There was no action, only speculation, no particular suspense, no spark between the characters...And it had the biggest flaw this book could brag with. The heroine.
I disliked Alexis with a passion from the get go. The initial description, done by Alexis herself, of her being a klutz and severely magically deficient, was probably used with the purpose in intention of endearing her to the reader, making her someone we "normal, average-looking, average-weighing women" could relate to, sympathize with, but it achieved the complete opposite for me. I still can't get over the fact, she was really a materialistic, "overachieving brown-noser" (if I use Nate's own thoughts), incapable of having any lasting relationships, because she always went for the wrong guy, but she still blamed everyone and everything else but herself for it. She hadn't a single thought that was her own, but simply parroted the rather dysfunctional and potentially ruining teachings of her over-ambitious (occasional) man-hater of a winikin. I felt acutely sorry for Nate and the screwage the gods did on him with such a mate. Lucky for me, Nate and the whole story, Alexis left the bitch-train after page 290, got a brain, got a spine, sorted out her problems (sort of), and it was pretty smooth sailing from then on.
I have absolutely not objections to Nate. He was great, completely misunderstood by his "team" and his mate, though he had a clear and consistent point throughout the story. Well, he smoothed Alexis out, she smoothed him out a little in the end, so I'm a pretty happy camper.
The suspense grew exponentially with the lack of days to the equinox, with a new super-villain thrown in for the chills and thrills, giving us a new and extremely interesting reason for keeping our fingers crossed and cheer for the can of whoopass the Nighkeapers are bound to deal...Can't wait.
And the ending, ain't that a cliffy. It simply crashed through everything we thought we knew, sending the Nightkeepers back into the "Nightkeeper stone-age" with no hope for the future...
So, the second half definitely redeemed the first. Good writing, good dialog, good character interaction, great suspense, great final twist. I can't wait for the next one, which, according to the reviews on this site, is the "best in the series so far".(less)
When I first read the blurb for this one – a mixture of romance, action, thriller, Mayan history and mythology and a nice end of the world prophecy as...moreWhen I first read the blurb for this one – a mixture of romance, action, thriller, Mayan history and mythology and a nice end of the world prophecy as the cherry on a cake – I thought that this would be right up my alley…And I wasn’t wrong. And I wasn’t disappointed. The reader is thrust head-first into the fray right from the beginning and the chills, thrills and suspense don’t falter until the very end.
I don’t particularly like books with too many characters and too many smaller storylines, but trust Jessica Andersen to make it work to her advantage. Usually all those characters vie for the leading spot, bumping into each other in the process, garbling everything up, their stories so entangled it’s rather painful to read and decipher. Nightkeepers was the complete opposite. The “secondary” characters stories were nicely intertwined with the greater arc, highlighting the main plot and the story between Strike and Leah, giving it depth and that extra touch of realism. Their combined tales amped up the ante, so to speak.
Yeah, the story was gripping – with that added oomph of the end-date 12/21/2012 looming closer – the action riveting, the magic of it all spellbinding etc., but what truly pulled me in were the characters. They were fully developed, well-rounded and real with all their ups and downs, their pluses and their (glaring) flaws. While usually the authors focus on the female lead’s character, the centerfold of this story was a man, the man. Striking-Jaguar a.k.a. Strike, son of the old king, trying to find his place in this world for himself as a man, a leader, a lover, and a (possible) king. I loved it, how he didn’t have an answer always ready, how his stumbling, his mistakes, his stubbornness, his unwillingness to face the dire possibilities, his fear of failure made him even more real, more approachable, more flesh-and-blood that simple fiction. And the author didn’t forget about her other characters in the melee, they all had their handicaps and their strengths, their inner demons to battle, their shields and masks to hide behind. This was truly an amazing cast for an amazing story.
The romance was rather subtle – most of the time – but I didn’t pick this one up because of it, though it was a nice bonus. The normal fare of similar-themed books is all about the romance and “let’s cram as much sex as possible in these few days that we have left together” shtick. Well, if you’re looking for that kind of book, give this one a wide berth. Sure, there are some pretty hot scenes, but they’re all in context with what goes on around the characters, never disrupting the (natural) flow of the story. Which is rare and extremely refreshing. And as in all romances, nothing is simple, even after the clothes come off. There was much nail-biting, tears-flowing, fingers-crossing before the final chapter, where all that was amplified to the max. Yep, suspense never lessens in this one.
This book was a real pleasure to read, it had absolutely everything I seek in a paranormal/fantasy/thriller/suspense/romance book. The (well-researched) details about history, the Maya and the prophecies are aplenty, but not so much as to make the story appear crammed, but create a (much-needed) background to the plot and the entire arc.
Highly recommended read from this highly satisfied reader. A definite keeper!
Working undercover in a jewelry store, Marina Bond, with the SIS, overhears a suspicious phone conversation about the man who once saved her life, Cor...moreWorking undercover in a jewelry store, Marina Bond, with the SIS, overhears a suspicious phone conversation about the man who once saved her life, Corbett Lazlo. She immediately contacts him, requesting a meeting, but he sends one of his top agents, DeWitt von Kreus instead.
Inside the hotel room, a rather flustered Marina invokes the Denmark protocol, he invokes it as well, and the two end up having their conversation naked. Unfortunately being naked inside a hotel room with a South African stud-muffin quickly leads to things that don't require much conversation, but when she decides to leave without even considering Witt's demand to see her again, he follows and someone shoots at them in front of the hotel.
Witt's protective instincts (coupled with a severe case of lust) kick in and he soon horns into her operation. Now they must work together to uncover just who wants one of them dead, the mole inside SIS, and bring to justice an Angolan crime lord trafficking in blood diamonds. All the while without constantly jumping each other's bones and risking their hearts in the process. Tough gig.
I don't believe in God, but let me take a moment....Thank you Lord! Hallelujah!...Moment over.
I was truly beginning to despair, but lucky I have the wonderful Nina Bruhns to thank for putting me out of my misery.
This story had it (almost) all. The plot was great and perfectly (compared to the first two in the series) executed, I loved the style, the pacing...Everything.
The characters came alive for me. Finally! Marina with her tough-as-nails attitude but so scared deep inside, DeWitt with his devilish charm that hid the deep emotional scars from his past. What is there not to love about these two? Well, maybe the lack of communication, but we can't have it all, can we? The man has to be a little thick (chicks aren't mind readers, you know) and the girl has to be a bit too insecure so she runs from him, and realizes her mistake when it's almost too late, but then a light bulb light up above the the guy's thick head and he swoops in and saves the day. They were perfect together, you could see where they were headed, despite their stubbornness, and the wait (though painful at times) was worth it. My favorite part of their story? When he was high and loopy from the painkillers in the hospital. Awww.
This wasn't as suspenseful as it could've been, but the pace certainly didn't suffer for the lack of it. I missed the Dumont (DuMond) family from the first two books, though. Yes, the villain was obscurely connected to them, but the total lack of appearance kinda bugged me, while still keeping me at the edge of my seat wondering just how deeply they are connected to everything going on and what they might plot next.
A great read that restored my faith in the rest of the miniseries. Lazlo's story couldn't come soon enough.(less)
Oh. My. God. Three words that, IMO, perfectly sum up this book.
While the first two stories in this series were severely hampered by their heroines, th...moreOh. My. God. Three words that, IMO, perfectly sum up this book.
While the first two stories in this series were severely hampered by their heroines, this book was sheer perfection compared to the previous two.
Grace was still a soft, gentle woman, but - perhaps because the violence touched her early in the story - she didn't come off as unaware, blind or naive. She knew straight on what was going on and though she could wail, cry, and throw tantrums, she did none of those things. She gathered her courage, thrust her chin in the air, and trudged forward. I couldn't imagine a more suitable and perfect counterpart for Drake, our beloved arms dealer.
Yeah, it's a humongous feat turning someone who is essentially a bad guy into the leading man, but Victor "Drake" Drakovich had that little extra oomph that made this possible. The prologue in itself showed us, how utterly different he is from other heroes in Romancelandia - not a towering hunk over six-foot-two, but of average height, hands and feet heavily callused from martial arts (though most heroes are callused, I've never read of someone like Drake), and what we discovered through Grace's eyes throughout the story only confirmed the theory...Also, despite operating on the other side of the law, he still had his principles, his own set of rules, which is what started the whole story.
These two completely different people, one soft, the other hard, found themselves thrust together, mostly thanks to Drake and his little obsession, and then had to make the best of the situation. It was lovely seeing their slow, but steady transformation, especially Drake's. He was the one that, despite retaining all his traits that helped him survive through the years and helped him keep Grace safe, was the most changed by this relationship. She taught a man that never smiled, the importance of it, she taught him gentleness, she brought softness and peace into his life. But most of all, it was so sweet watching him see his bleak world overfill with colors through her eyes.
This was truly an amazing story, with just the right amount of suspense to spice up Drake and Grace's love story. And what a love story this was, with three memorable scenes that put this one firmly on my keepers shelf: the scene at the window overlooking the Manhattan night skyline—H-O-T, the scene on the terrace in Rome—sweet, and the final few paragraphs of the epilogue—bring on the tissues!
An amazingly bitter-sweet and highly recommended read.(less)
The prologue hooked me immediately. Promising one heck of a story, and indeed it was a great improvement from the first book in this series.
Especially...moreThe prologue hooked me immediately. Promising one heck of a story, and indeed it was a great improvement from the first book in this series.
Especially in the heroine-personality department. Although, Charity struck me as too naive - she lived in a freaking fairy-tale world where everybody was good and the Russian millionaire that suddenly appeared in her home town with obvious issues (feverish eyes, getting her name wrong etc.) and surrounded by an army of thugs was of course simply a great writer...And it was completely normal for her to fall for a charming young guy in a heartbeat and marry him after a week. Sheesh! I kept wondering when those rose-tinted glasses would get knocked off her perfect little nose. Well, it happened a tad too late if you ask me, making her sudden change of heart and perspective a bit too unbelievable.
I loved the hero, though, better than his predecessor. Nick Ireland. Hot, sexy, incredibly skilled in everything he put his mind to, protective to the bone, willing to do anything it takes to keep his woman safe...Sure, there were times I wanted to smack him on the back of his head, but his patience with the naive heroine made me forgot all his subtle little flaws.
The suspense was much greater in this installment of the Dangerous series, the peril and danger constantly in the peripheral vision, keeping us guessing as to what the writer/mobster was up to - besides being completely nuts.
And there was a little humor - I like my books spiced with pinches of humor here and there. Hilarious the two exchanges between Nick and DiStefano about cursing in the presence of a lady.
So, despite the naiveté of the heroine (she did come round in the end), this was still a great read, delving into shady territory of undercover work, lies blending into one another, creating an almost parallel reality. The author succeeded in conveying Nick's indecision and tumultuous thoughts perfectly.
Another yes-and-no book for me. Yes, for the male lead and his cute stalker-ish ways and love for the heroine, the villain, the plot, and the nice cre...moreAnother yes-and-no book for me. Yes, for the male lead and his cute stalker-ish ways and love for the heroine, the villain, the plot, and the nice creepy feeling of a small town in the middle of the blizzard (I love such minimalistic, "silent", compact settings).
No, for the bland heroine - I got the feeling she didn't have much of a personality, her woeful little back story that got old too fast, and the rather abrupt (though I was prepared for it) ending. I feel this book could've used a chapter more, to expand on the final action sequence in the blizzard, and the final resolution between the leads, because what we got just didn't cut it.
But, thanks to the good (though sometimes templateish) writing, great characterization for the two leading men, and the minimalistic setting, this was still a great little suspense novel.
P.S. Lucky for me the next one is longer...And the third stars the intriguing Victor "Drake" Drakovich that immediately caught my eye in his short, yet memorable appearance. Looking forward to it.(less)
Whew. I finally got around to reading this. And now that I’m done, I’m really, really sorry for not reading it sooner. Damn! Maybe it wasn’t as “funny...moreWhew. I finally got around to reading this. And now that I’m done, I’m really, really sorry for not reading it sooner. Damn! Maybe it wasn’t as “funny” (I mean the LOL moments) as Just the Sexiest Man Alive, but it was still one of the best contemporary romances / romantic comedies I’ve read in last few years.
I loved Payton and J.D., and their mutual antics. Very kindergarten, if-he-pulls-your-braids-it-means-he-really-really-likes-you, extremely childish at times, somewhat over the top at moments (the coffee on suit and the heel incident), but still, you could feel the underlying (sexual) tension between these two. And the banter, the banter, when they managed to burry the proverbial axe for a few moments, was absolutely fantastic.
“Why don’t you look around this firm sometime—everyone here is just like you, J.D. White with a penis.”
Not being in the law field, I sometimes puzzled over the partner-race the two were in, I admit to not understanding the importance of it all, but it provided both the comedic angle and some pretty good insight into the psyches of our hero and heroine. He was a rich-boy, asshole with slightly chauvinistic tendencies, she was a prissy, feminist vegetarian, and for some reason they worked. Worked splendidly in war-more, worked splendidly in truce-mode, worked splendidly (together) in work-mode, and worked splendidly in “amorous”-mode. I just loved these two to bits. Along with the rest of the supporting cast, from her quirky mother, to his filthy-rich parents, their two best friends, her secretary, and the major client. This motley crew of characters clicked perfectly, bringing all the necessary nuances to the story. Wonderfully done.
Speaking of the motley crew cast of characters. J.D.’s best friend and an anonymous cab driver provided my absolute favorite scene in the book with the Pride and Prejudice reference and apropos tea discussion.
“ ‘Does our fair Ms. Kendall truly loathe the arrogant Mr. Jameson as she so ardently proclaims, or is it all just a charade to cover more amorous feelings for a man she reluctantly admires? ’” Up front, the cabdriver snorted loudly. He appeared to be enjoying the show.
“Psych 101 again?” J.D. asked.
Tyler shook his head. “Lit 305: Eighteenth-Century Women’s Fiction.” He caught J.D.’s look and quickly defended himself. “What? I took it because of the girls in the class. Anyway, I see a bit of a P and P dynamic going on between you and Payton.”
J.D. didn’t think he wanted to know. Really. But he asked anyway. “P and P?”
Tyler shot him a look, appalled. “Uh, hello—Pride and Prejudice?” His tone said only a cretin wouldn’t know this. “Oh right, P and P,” J.D. said. “You know, Tyler, you might want to pick up your balls—I think they just fell right off when you said that.”
Up front, the cabdriver let out a good snicker.
Tyler shook his head. “Laugh if you want, but let me tell you something: women go crazy for that book. And even crazier for men who have read it. If I plan to bring a girl back to my place, I might just so happen to leave a copy of it sitting out on my coffee table and, let’s just say, hijinks frequently ensue. And you know what? It’s not a bad bit of storytelling. I like to put on a nice pot of Earl Grey tea, maybe a slice of almond biscotti, and—yeah, that’s fine, keep right on laughing, buddy, but I bet I’ve gotten laid more recently than you.”
“Hey—not that I’m not thoroughly amused at the thought of your little tea cozy and you wrapped up in a blanket reading your book—”
“I didn’t say there was a blanket.” Tyler paused. “Fine. Sometimes there may be a blanket.”
“—but my question is, were you going anywhere with this, or is it just some sort of weird sharing moment?”
Tyler had to think. “Where was I going with this . . . ?” He snapped his fingers. “Oh, yeah—Pride and Prejudice. Women and the whole Darcy complex. For Payton, that’s you.”
“I thought Darcy was the asshole.”
Tyler smiled fondly. “You know, he really kind of is.”
“Great pep talk, Tyler. Thanks.”
“But he doesn’t stay the asshole,” Tyler said. “See, you just don’t understand women the way I do, J.D. They want it all: a career, apple martinis, financial independence, great shoes; but at the same time—and this they’ll never admit— they are drawn to patriarchal men who are dominant and controlling. That’s the essence of the Darcy complex. He may be an asshole, but he’s an asshole that gets the girl in the end.”
J.D. rolled his eyes. This entire conversation was just so ridiculous. But still.
“And how does he accomplish that?” he asked.
“Oh, it gets a little complicated,” Tyler said. “See, Lizzie has this troublesome younger sister who runs off with the guy she originally thought she liked—wait, back up—to really understand, I should start with the visit to Pemberley, because it actually starts with the aunt and uncle, see—her uncle loves to fish and Darcy asks—”
J.D. held up his hand, very, very sorry he asked. “The short version please. We’re already at your stop.”
Tyler looked out the window and saw that the cab had indeed pulled up in front of his building. He turned back to J.D. “Okay. The short version, the very short version: he gets the girl by being nice to her.”
J.D. waited. “That’s it? He’s nice to her? That’s so . . .lame.”
“Look, if you want to win Payton over—”
J.D. stopped him right there. “Hey, we’re only speaking in hypotheticals, okay? I haven’t decided that I want to win anyone over.”
“Oh. Then my advice is that you should start there. Figure out what you want.” With that, Tyler got out of the cab and darted through the rain into his building.
Great. Thanks for the help. J.D. gave the cabdriver his address. He stared out the window as the taxi made its way the six blocks to his building. When they arrived, J.D. reached through the divider and handed the cabdriver a twenty and told him to keep the change.
The driver turned around. “Hey—your friend back there was giving you some pretty strange advice.” Around fortyish and wearing a ragged flannel shirt and a Sox cap that had seen far better days, the guy had one of the thickest Chicago accents J.D. had ever heard. “He seemed a little off the wall, if you know what I mean. I don’t think I’d listen to him if I were you.”
J.D. grinned. “I’ll take that under advisement.” He opened the door to the cab and stepped out.
“Because everybody knows that Darcy doesn’t win Lizzie over just by being nice.”
J.D. stopped. He looked back over his shoulder.
The driver rested his arm on the divider. His rolled-up sleeve revealed a tattoo of a black scorpion that covered his entire forearm. “See, it’s all about the Grand Gesture. That’s how you get the girl.”
“Thank you,” J.D. managed to say.
The driver shrugged. “No prob-lem. Frankly, it sounded like you could use all the help you can get.”
He put the cab into gear.
“And listen—tell your friend to try English Breakfast next time. It’s a little more robust. Earl Grey is really more of a Sense and Sensibility kind of tea.”
It’s the scenes like those, the amazing characterization, the general comedic feel, and all-in-all good plots that I love about Julie James' books.
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Two months ago Sawyer Bennet killed his wife, threw her body into the swamp and buried the knife behind the shed. The only witness to the murder was h...moreTwo months ago Sawyer Bennet killed his wife, threw her body into the swamp and buried the knife behind the shed. The only witness to the murder was his daughter Melanie, but she hasn’t spoken since that day…So what the heck is Amanda Rockport doing, applying for the job as Melanie’s nanny?
Well, she refuses to listen to rumor, for starters. The evidence against Sawyer is merely circumstantial and until he’s in jail the rumors are just rumors. Besides, Amanda knows Sawyer isn’t the murderer, because Melanie still adores her daddy, which wouldn’t be the case if she saw him stab her mother…
But someone is determined to see Sawyer thrown in jail. And if that means hurting, or even killing, his new nanny in the process, so be it.
Woohoo, another good Harlequin Intrigue story. Good story, tight plot, good pacing, wonderful characters (with a surprising amount of chemistry), good suspense and intrigue, and rather nicely done romantic subplot. The only hiccup is the fact the villain was glaringly obvious, but still, the buildup more than compensated for it. The ending was a little different than most (he let her go), but it still worked. (less)
*******Update 07/04: On second re-read I found myaself appreciating this book a little bit more...So 4 stars it is.*******
King of Sari's favorite conc...more*******Update 07/04: On second re-read I found myaself appreciating this book a little bit more...So 4 stars it is.*******
King of Sari's favorite concubine (and by the same king's proclamation his karisette - one true love), Sapphire is released after five years of service with a great retiring plan. A house of her own, no need to search for a new protector, and fourteen men at her very beck and call.
Unfortunately one of those men is none other than the crown prince of D'Ashier, Wulfric, who's been tortured almost to death and suddenly finds himself captive of the beguiling beauty. A beguiling beauty who also happens to be the ex mistress of his greatest enemy and the daughter of Sari's national hero.
The thing is, fate seldom chooses wisely, and these two people, supposed to be enemies, soon finds themselves battling an attraction and passion so strong impossible to be denied, knowing full well, their union is doomed from the very start...
I have rather mixed feelings about this book. I absolutely adored Sapphire. This concubine/warrior woman literally stole my heart. She was strong, determined, stubborn to just the right degree, and fiercely protective of the people she regarded as hers. Even of a man who was a complete stranger, and her enemy to boot. Even when she didn't know Wulfric, she went with her instincts (which were never wrong) and put her very life, and the life of her family, on the line...It was a great portent of things to come. So here you have this fierce warrior and seasoned courtesan, trained in the arts of the senses, trained to keep he body and mind detached, yet she could melt at the merest "right" touch. This duality was beautifully portrayed, both in dialog and description.
I was a bit disappointed in Wulfric, to be honest. I felt there was quite a few things left out, but I guess that's to be expected - this is the first book in the trilogy. I just wasn't convinced about his change of mind and his "true" feelings. The description he gave his father was heartwarming indeed (he needed her to feel), and he was thankfully rather quick in voicing the three important words that are supposed to soothe all woes in Romancelandia, but there was still something off. Unfortunately, the sex (this story had plenty of it - whopping 11 scenes crammed into 300 pages) didn't reflect the change in the guy. He still seemed more like a beat in rut than a man in love.
Also, the whole obsession thing went a bit too far for my tastes. Not only it started to get a bit silly with two members of royalty obsessed with one tiny woman - did she sweat drugs or something? - but also it dragged on for too long.
The story, crammed in between the sex scenes (which in my opinion contributed too little to the plot and were getting a bit repetitive toward the end) was wonderful. I loved the futuristic spin on the Romeo and Juliette theme. The action-y climax was wonderfully executed and it was great to finally see Sapphire kick some ass (you go girl!).
This book doesn't have your standard HEA, but more of a HEA tied in with a nice cliffy leading into the next book. There is so many loose ends left after this book, that it's almost imperative to read the second...And of course to make certain the HEA stays a HEA.(less)