Bold Tricks ended up being the best of the series, IMO, other than On Every Street, which is still my favorite. I didn’t hate Ellie nearly as much this time around as in the previous books, which was quite refreshing. And even more shocking...I actually liked her in certain moments, albeit grudgingly.
I was somewhat underwhelmed by the first book in this series, Come Away With Me, but I’m soooo glad...more5 stars – Contemporary Erotic Romance
I loved this!
I was somewhat underwhelmed by the first book in this series, Come Away With Me, but I’m soooo glad I kept reading because the rest have been some of my favorite reads of this year; not to mention having some of the most memorable, swoonalicious heroes. (Nate McKenna from Fight With Me is one of my all-time favorite husband harem worthy heroes!)
I had high expectations for this one from all the circling and tension that’s built between Caleb and Brynna in past books, and it definitely delivered. Caleb is a hot/cold, growly, sexy alpha SEAL hero with a sensitive, caring, protective nature who’s also vulnerable and tormented by inner demons and PTSD. Brynna is a strong and loyal heroine and she was perfect for him. I loved them together! I also adored Caleb’s relationship with Brynna’s inquisitive, vivacious twin six-year-old girls, Maddie and Josie. There were some very precious and poignant moments between them. And the ending and epilogue was satisfying and brought on some waterworks.
I love the close-knit Montgomery family and all their extended clan. One of the best things about this series is the relationships and interactions between all the characters and how much involvement there is in each book. The sexual teasing and hilarity that often results when the men and women get together provide some of the best and most highly entertaining moments. (The scene I posted below is one such instance.)
I can’t wait for hot, protective cop with a kinky side Matt’s book, Tied With Me, to come out! And I really hope she writes Dom’s story!
I loved this scene when the gang’s all together playing a dirty board game and Caleb is still trying to deny and resist his strong attraction and feelings for Brynna.
I drop my face to my hands and scrub hard.
"I wish I had your boobs," I hear Sam announce and raise my head to see who she's talking to. Of course, she's talking to Bryn.
"Right," she smirks and takes another bite of brownie.
"Dude, I do!" And just like that, Sam saunters across the room and cups Brynna's tit in her palm. "See? You have the perfect boobs. Stace, have you felt her boobs?"
Just kill me. Put a bullet in my head and end the agony.
"Oh yeah," Stacy waves her off. "She has great tits."
She has amazing tits.
"I wanna feel!" Jules bounces over and joins in.
"Give me more chocolate and you can touch all you want." Brynna laughs and then glances over at me. "This is the most action I've had in months."
"Motherfuckingsonofawhore." I grumble.
"Is Brynna single?" Mark asks Will.
"Keep your fucking hands off her," I growl at him before I know what's coming out of my mouth.
"Hey," he holds his hands up in surrender and laughs. "It was just an innocent question."
Wowza! Oh boy, but I enjoyed this tasty confection! Edible definitely lives up to its name! Cole is one of the m...more5 stars – Contemporary Erotic Romance
Wowza! Oh boy, but I enjoyed this tasty confection! Edible definitely lives up to its name! Cole is one of the most decadently yummy, suit-wearing, commanding, dirty talking alpha heroes in Romancelandia. The sex scenes are panty scorching hot, and I loved the touching epilogue. My only complaint is that it left me with a severe, unsatisfied, craving for some caramel sauce! 5 scrumptious stars!
All eight Bridgerton 2nd Epilogues have finally been gathered together in one volume, including the long-awaited 2nd Epilog...moreFrom Julia Quinn's website:
All eight Bridgerton 2nd Epilogues have finally been gathered together in one volume, including the long-awaited 2nd Epilogues for The Duke and I and On the Way to the Wedding. And as a special bonus: "Violet in Bloom," a short story in which we finally meet Edmund Bridgerton.(less)
Kristen Ashley has without a doubt earned the best/most of everything for 2012 (addictive stories, unforgettable...more5 stars – Contemporary Erotic Romance
Kristen Ashley has without a doubt earned the best/most of everything for 2012 (addictive stories, unforgettable heroes, and moving epilogues) and is easily one of my all-time favorite authors. Her books completely beguile me every single time and this was certainly no exception. Never mind that I had boxes to unpack or a gazillion other things to do because Creed simply demanded my full attention...and boy howdy, he got it! I simply couldn’t put it down!
This actually started off a little bit rocky and I wasn’t quite sure what to think. But then around the 28% mark, everything started falling into place and I ended up loving it! Creed and Sylvie are both broken and battered with horribly tragic pasts, but they find healing and forgiveness through their resilient, enduring, and unconquerable love for each other. They’re memorable, unique characters, and I adored them together.
I loved Knight and Creed, and it’s hard to decide which I liked better. Both have compelling, strong, albeit very distinctive, heroes, and although related, they’re still very different books; so it’s probably best not to compare the two. Having said that, this definitely left me more emotionally satisfied than Knight, probably because there’s a definitive, more traditional, hard-won HEA.
Bottom line, Kristen Ashley is an author goddess and she’s once again made me a very happy romance reader! Big 5 stars!
The epilogue...of course. KA is the queen of heartwarming, mushy, gushy, and can’t-get-enough-of-it epilogues, and Creed left me smiling and wiping away tears.
Creed naming his kids (view spoiler)[with another woman the same names that he and Sylvie had planned on (hide spoiler)] made my heart break. Talk about a hot poker to the chest! His reasoning was awful, twisted, beautiful, and tragic, and although things eventually worked out, it was still hard to take.
After waiting so long for the flashback scene to reveal the moment that Sylvie (view spoiler)[finally lost her virginity to Creed (hide spoiler)], I was very disappointed that it faded to black.
I think it’s a bit misleading that this series falls in the Unfinished Hero series that’s described as erotic romances with anti-heroes because Creed is without a doubt an honorable man and a full-fledged hero, and it’s really not all that erotic.
This is Kristen Ashley’s first venture into the “erotic” romance genre, and I loved it! Knight Sebring is a serio...more5 stars – Contemporary Erotic Romance
This is Kristen Ashley’s first venture into the “erotic” romance genre, and I loved it! Knight Sebring is a seriously sexy, magnetic, dark anti-hero and all kinds of yummy “Dom”ineering alpha hotness. Anya Gage is very likeable and genuine and one of my favorite KA heroines. I really enjoyed their captivating, intense connection, dynamic relationship, emotional progression, and explosive bedroom scenes! YOWZA!
Ms. Ashley took a gamble with this, and I imagine some readers/fans will be put off by certain aspects, like the BDSM (D/s) elements and Knight’s dark side. He’s definitely an enigmatic, powerful “anti-hero”, but that’s one of the things I loved most about it. And I’ve read quite a bit of erotic and BDSM romances, so for me, this is actually on the somewhat lite/mild side, but it’s still gratifyingly steamy!
Controversy and Quibbles:
1) Spank Me Daddy
Knight had Anya answer/call him “Daddy” instead of “Master” or “Sir” in their sex play, which usually sets off my ick factor alert, but it really didn’t bother me in this. Somehow Knight mastered it, and I actually found this “Daddy” more smokin’ hot than creepy. “Come to/for Daddy?” If/when it’s Knight Sebring demanding it? Oh Hell Yeah!
2) I’m No Mr. Nice Guy...aka...Knight’s Big Secret
(view spoiler)[Knight is a pimp. WTF?!?! But hey, he treats his stable of women much better than his smarmy predecessor and he once covered Anya with a blanket while she was napping, so it’s okay. *dramatic eye roll* It just didn’t seem right to me that he would continue to profit from the world’s oldest profession, despite his reasoning and assurances that his girls are well treated and protected, especially considering his mother’s tragic past as a prostitute and how it impacted him when he was a little boy. And not to mention the fact that he’s already filthy rich. (hide spoiler)]
3) HEA But Knight Isn’t Traditional
(view spoiler)[Knight wouldn’t “officially” marry Anya or give her his last name because it’s just not him (too white picket fence and traditional). Yet he gave her a ring and very reception-like party and was excited and enthusiastic about having kids. Hmmm...isn’t that a bit ironic? (hide spoiler)]
Overall, I’m a very satisfied Kristen Ashley fangirl and sincerely hope she pens more erotic romances! 5 stars!
Favorite Knight quotes:
“Wars fought over a face like this,” he murmured like he was talking to himself, my heart stopped beating and his thumbs moved lightly across my cheeks. “A man would work himself into the ground for it, go down to his knees to beg to keep it, endure torture to protect it, take a bullet for it,” his eyes came to mine, “poison his brother to possess a face like this.”
“And I wake up happy, baby, because I possess beauty and I own that beauty in all the forms it can take and the least important of those are physical.”
“Who’s Your Daddy?”
Knight’s Hot in a Suit, Sophisticated Style:
‘Cause every girl crazy ‘bout a Sharp Dressed Man!
Gah! I don’t have time to fully review this book to give it the justice it deserves. And ther...more5 stars – Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense Novella
Gah! I don’t have time to fully review this book to give it the justice it deserves. And there’s no way I could possibly gush enough over how much I enjoyed the sweet, touching romance between a remarkable H/h, both of whom are battered souls deserving of gentleness, healing, and love. Pamela Clare never fails to amaze me with her emotional, powerful stories and she pens some of the absolute best heroes in romance. If you’re a romance fan and haven’t yet discovered her I-Team and MacKinnon’s Rangers series, then what on earth are you waiting for?!?! Big 5 stars!
I’ve been looking forward to Mike’s story and anxious for his HEA ever since he stole my heart when I read At Peace. G...more5+ stars – Contemporary Romance
I’ve been looking forward to Mike’s story and anxious for his HEA ever since he stole my heart when I read At Peace. Games of the Heart lived up to my high expectations and then some. It’s one of my (many) favorite Kristen Ashley reads. I loved it! I adored everything about it...the amazing hero and heroine, touching young love secondary romance, great ensemble cast of characters, emotional story, and gratifying epilogue.
Mike is such a swoon-worthy hero...he’s a caring, dedicated, and protective father and cop, a tough alpha male, and a commanding bad boy in the bedroom. Dusty is the perfect heroine...genuine, loving, strong, earthy, spirited, funny, and loyal. Mike and Dusty make a wonderful, solid couple, and their romance is compelling and heartfelt. But they nearly have the spotlight stolen by the beautiful, sweet teen romance between Dusty’s nephew, Finley “Fin”, and Mike’s daughter, Clarisse “Rees/Reesee”. There just aren’t enough words to describe how much I adored Fin. *sigh* He’s a far better man at seventeen than most could ever hope to be. Not to mention an unforgettable romantic hero in his own right.
So on that note, I’m finishing my review with a picture tribute to Fin. I love Garrett Hedlund and he’d make a yummy (older) Fin, but age wise I think Alex Pettyfer is a fitting casting choice.
Younger Alex Pettyfer as 17-year-old teen heartthrob Fin.
Alex Pettyfer as Fin seven years later when he’s finally about to (view spoiler)[marry his longtime sweetheart and true love Reesee in the epilogue. (hide spoiler)]
Garrett Hedlund is a great alternate for 24-year-old Fin.
If I rated this based on the heroine it would get 1 star because Ava topped the annoying b*t...more4 stars – Chick lit/Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense
If I rated this based on the heroine it would get 1 star because Ava topped the annoying b*tchometer until around the 65% mark and even after that was still ungrateful and somewhat irritating. Without a doubt, yummalicious, handcuff wielding, uber alpha badass Luke Stark made and saved this book.
Peace Out and Rock On!
*****Edited from original rating/review*****
I bumped this from a somewhat lackluster 4 stars to a stronger, more solid 4+ after finishing Rock Chick Regret, loving the series, and eventually growing to like Ava. Besides, Luke Stark is one of the most badass, studtastic members of the Hot Bunch!
There’s no possible way I can adequately express my feelings about this book or gush enough over how much I admire Kris...more5+ stars – Contemporary Romance
There’s no possible way I can adequately express my feelings about this book or gush enough over how much I admire Kristen Ashley’s writing brilliance. So I’ll keep things simple and just say that I loved, loved, loved this!
Ms. Ashley is the reigning queen of smokin’ hot, badass uber alpha heroes, addictive, sigh-worthy romance, and dreamy, gratifying epilogues, and Heaven and Hell is certainly no exception. It’s one of my very favorite KA reads to date! Huge, heavenly 5 stars!
Sam in all his sexy, swoonalicious glory:
Kia in casual glamour mode:
Kia lounging around Sam’s beach house in North Carolina:
Memphis going for a walk on the beach:
On a side note...I’ve been to Lake Como in Italy and it’s without a doubt one of the most beautiful, heavenly places I’ve seen. So I especially loved all the Lake Como scenes.
Lago di Como è bellissima!
This emotional, heartfelt scene pretty much sums up the book.
(view spoiler)[“You walked into that dining room, baby, and you know, the minute I saw you, I wanted to fuck you. Two days later, I saw you outside havin’ a drink and even before you looked at me with tears in your eyes, just when I saw you sittin’ there, I was annoyed, thought you were playin’ games, and I didn’t care. Just you sittin’ there I knew it was you.” He knew it was me. Me I closed my eyes. “Look at me,” Sam ordered quietly and I opened them. “Weeks after that, Kia, I saw you standing in my kitchen writing a grocery list, doing nothing, just writing a grocery list. But you’d just made me laugh and, just like you, you made me do it hard. That shit with Gordo, with Luci, losin’ Ben, Felicia tryin’ to off herself, that shit’s too much, it wears you down. I hadn’t laughed like that in months, not since Gordo died and in that moment, you in the kitchen, I realized I did it all the time with you. There were times before, a lot of them, I’d look at you and feel your pull, so strong. I wanted to fight it, deny it but I couldn’t, you wouldn’t let me and I didn’t get it. But seein’ you standing in my kitchen, effortlessly beautiful, writing a fuckin’ grocery list after you made me laugh like that, I knew what it was. I got it. I knew it was more. I knew that wasn’t an offer. That was a promise. Even with all the shit goin’ down with you, shit that would wear any other woman down, it didn’t with you and you gave me that from the beginning. And it hit me then that was what my life would be like if I lived the whole of it with you. And I knew I couldn’t live without you.” Oh. My. God. He couldn’t live without me. His face got close. “You cannot leave me. You can’t. I can’t live without you.” He couldn’t live without me. He was in hell, just like me. And just like he did for me, I showed him heaven.(hide spoiler)]
My favorite badass alpha, yowza dirty talkin’ Sam quote:
**********explicit language and spoiler warning**********
(view spoiler)[“Kia, eyes on me,” Sam ordered gently and my eyes slid back to him to see he wasn’t smiling anymore and there was no trace of hilarity. He was focused, intent and serious but all of that in a tender way that made something important shift inside of me. “Makin’ you melt for me then makin’ you light up for me, listening to you get excited, feeling it, tasting it, eating it.” His words made me shiver and it helped that his hand was gliding up my back, my neck and into my hair then he pulled my head down so my face was an inch from his and he continued on a whisper, “Feelin’ you come against my mouth, watchin’ you drive yourself down on my dick, listening to you moan as your pussy clenched around my cock when you came, baby, yeah, that was all okay, that was all better than fuckin’ okay. It was fuckin’ beautiful.”(hide spoiler)]
GAWD I loved this book so much! There are many things that make this a great read but the reasons can be easily summari...more5+ stars – Contemporary Romance
GAWD I loved this book so much! There are many things that make this a great read but the reasons can be easily summarized in three words repeated over and over again: Detective Mitch Lawson. A Law Man and Dream Man extraordinaire, he is without a doubt my favorite Kristen Ashley alpha hero and one of the most swoonalicious, studtastic, heart thud inducing, and sigh-worthy heroes in Romancelandia. Seriously, Mitch is yummy husband hero material and utterly amazing in every single way and then some.
I’ll be honest that I wanted to smack Mara silly for about the first 30+% of the book. Her constant judging and referring to people in terms of their zone number...“they’re a 7.5, I’m a 2.5, and he’s a 10.5”...really annoyed me. There were times when I wondered, why doesn’t Mitch ever let Mara talk or even finish a freaking sentence? (This is a common behavior with all of Kristen Ashley’s alpha heroes.) But then I was like, oh wait, maybe it’s because all she ever says is “uh...”, “um...”, “pardon me?”, and “sorry?”! And I found myself agreeing with Mitch’s harsh assessment that Mara seriously needed to (view spoiler)[get her head out of her ass (hide spoiler)]. But once Mara’s past was revealed and her batsh*t crazy relatives came calling; I understood and liked her much better. And I was so proud of her along with Mitch when she finally recognized her own self worth, found some backbone, and stood up for herself and her kids.
That brings me to another main reason I loved this book so much, which is the adorable, heartstring-tugging kids, Billy/Bud and Billie, and the cute, sweet, and emotional moments between them, Mara, and Mitch. There were several poignant scenes that choked me up and had tears streaming down my cheeks and others that brought a big smile to my face.
Like all of the previous Kristen Ashley books that I’ve read, this grabbed me from the very beginning, kept me engaged throughout, and had me anxiously yearning for a HEA finale. And once again, like all of KA’s stories, I was sad for it to end and grateful for the beautiful, touching epilogue that is in and of itself worthy of 5+ stars. (view spoiler)[The scene in the epilogue where Bud pounds a fist over his heart while staring meaningfully at Mitch on his way to the baseball dugout had me gulping back sobs. (hide spoiler)]
And the romance? Oh yeah! It’s intense, sexy, and smokin’ hot! Law Man is another Kristen Ashley winner! Big 5 stars!
Josh Duhamel is my Detective Mitch Lawson, and he definitely has the soulful brown eyes. *sigh*
Another Kristen Ashley winner! Do I even need to say anything more than that? Probably not, so ins...more4 ½-5 stars – Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense
Another Kristen Ashley winner! Do I even need to say anything more than that? Probably not, so instead of a typical review, I’m going to do some general rambling.
What I Loved:
#1 -- It’s told entirely from the hero’s POV, which is A+wesome!
That brings me to item #2, which is the hero, Tanner Layne. He’s a badass PI, a tough alpha male, and a devoted lover and father struggling to reconcile with his past, one and only, true love and make amends with his teen boys while also trying to teach them how to be men.
And this takes me to favorite things about the book #3 and #4 -- Layne’s teen sons, Jasper and Tripp. They’re KA heartthrobs and heroes in their own right and made me feel a little bit dirty and cougar-ish for seriously crushing on teenagers. (view spoiler)[Jasper and Keira and Trip and Giselle seemed to get their own HEAs, (hide spoiler)]but I really hope we haven’t seen the last of them. In fact, I’d love for Jasper and Tripp to be featured as main (legal and guilt free) heroes in future KA books. LOL!
#5 -- A great secondary cast of characters, especially mysterious badass, Ryker. I’m also looking forward to Garrett Merrick’s story.
#6 -- The To Kill a Mockingbird reference and how it’s an allegory for the story.
#7 -- The sweet and gratifying epilogue that’s worthy of 10+ stars!
Wacky But Whatever, It Still Worked Somehow:
Parenting 101 -- I’m not a parent so I can’t rightfully judge someone’s child rearing skills, but that doesn’t mean I can’t shake my head a few times with a seriously?, huh?, or wtf? There were several characters (Layne, Gabby, Vera, Dave, etc.) who demonstrated questionable parenting. I’m honestly not sure how I feel about some of Layne’s parenting decisions and actions, like involving his teenage sons, ages 14 and 17, in an undercover operation of a shady youth group. I imagine he would probably raise the eyebrows of some parental experts. But raising teenagers to be compassionate, responsible adults who do the right thing isn’t easy. I liked his honesty and that he didn’t shield Jasper and Tripp from the harsh realities of life. And it seemed to all work out for the best.
Talk Show Worthy Family Drama -- I think several characters in this book needed some counseling. Seriously, Dr. Phil would have a freakin field day with these people.
Crazy Exes, Multiple Plots, and Uber Villains -- Layne’s b*tchy ex-wife Gabby and her loser, enforcer boyfriend, Rocky’s cheating doctor ex and his shady financial and business dealings, and an undercover investigation of a sinister youth minister (view spoiler)[whose group is really a front for recruiting girls for a child pornography, underage sexual slavery/prostitution ring (hide spoiler)] run by a female mastermind villain who makes Cruella de Vil look like the Easter Bunny.
The Big Secret Reveal -- It was a heartbreaking scene, but also seemed very melodramatic and overly angsty.
The Hero’s Name -- Layne is a nerdy programmer analyst with fancy pencils in his pocket and Tanner is a badass biker or cowboy (and Days of Our Lives soap opera bad boy from the early 90’s). So I would have preferred that the hero went by his first name, Tanner, instead of his last name, Layne.
The Heroine’s Name –- She has a beautiful name, Raquel, but everyone calls her Rocky?! Ugh!
Size Matters -- KA’s stories are characteristically detailed and lengthy, but this one felt looong. I think it could have used some trimming down.
But despite all the wackiness and some imperfections, I loved it! Nearly 5 stars!
Jasper (Now you can understand why I was crushing hard on a teenager!)
All the single ladies, all the single ladies All the single ladies, all the single ladies All the single ladies...
Now pack your bags up!
Considering there’s not one but four yummy heroes introduced in this first book in the Dream Man series that’s set in Denver, Colorado (all of whom get their own book...YAY!), not to mention the smokin’ hot, badass alpha heroes from Ashley’s Colorado Mountain series, and it definitely wouldn’t be surprising if all the single ladies suddenly packed up and moved to Colorado.
Mystery Man is Cabe “Hawk” Delgado’s book. Initially, I was far more fascinated and smitten with Detective Mitch Lawson and biker badass Tack (two of the aforementioned yummy Dream Men who will have leading roles in Law Man and Motorcycle Man respectively). But of course Hawk soon won me over and left me panting, daydreaming, and swooning like all of KA’s heroes.
Hawk is a growly, bossy, arrogant, brooding, domineering, and possessive uber alpha commando who could teach Tate from Sweet Dreams a thing or two about being a badass, including the correct, standard rumbling response to anything and everything...“Babe”.
There were several times I wanted to smack both Hawk and Gwen, but they eventually got their sh*t together. Kristen Ashley is a master when it comes to dreamy, gratifying epilogues, and this time was certainly no exception...just heartwarming perfection. 5 stars!
A bunch of my fellow romance lovin’ Goodreads friends have been reading and raving about Kristen Ashley, and with great...more5+ stars – Contemporary Romance
A bunch of my fellow romance lovin’ Goodreads friends have been reading and raving about Kristen Ashley, and with great reason. Lady Luck is the third book in the Colorado Mountain series, and after reading it, I’m now 3 for 3 with her books being big 5 star winners that I loved.
There’s just something about her stories that grab me right from the beginning and never let go. I especially love how the details, descriptions, and conversations depict such vivid images of the characters and scenes so that it feels like you’re watching a movie in your mind. It’s true that the editing could use improvement and there’s perhaps too much elucidation of inane minutiae, like clothes, jewelry, outfits, rooms, furniture, and common “stuff”. But overall Ashley’s unique writing style and genuine, engaging dialogue bring the story and cast to life. Her books are unusually lengthy and take me longer to read than other authors/books, but then astonishingly when they’re over, I’m sad and still want more. Fortunately, she also gives her readers superb epilogues that more than satisfy.
I absolutely adored Lexie, but I didn’t warm up to Ty quite as easily. I felt bad for him and all that he endured, and his anger, cynical mistrust of women, and desire for vengeance were more than justified. Even so, Ty’s cruel treatment of Lexie in a couple of momentous, heartbreakingly intense scenes really pissed me off. I cried like a baby and felt nearly as emotionally flayed and raw afterward as she did. Lexie’s such an incredibly sweet, loyal, giving, and loving heroine, and I wasn’t sure he’d be able to win me back after he’d hurt her so terribly and unforgivably. Amazingly he did, and with icing and a cherry on top. It certainly didn’t hurt that he’s a smokin’ hot, tortured, badass alpha, which I can never resist.
Crude language doesn’t bother me, but there’s a lot of fuckin’, pussy, and bitch talk in this that got somewhat grating at times. Also, I didn’t really care for Ty’s nickname “mama” for Lexie initially, but it grew on me after a while.
My summary of the Colorado Mountain series so far: Favorite hero: Max from The Gamble Favorite heroine: Lexie from Lady Luck Favorite overall story/book: Sweet Dreams And I can’t wait for Chace and Faye’s story!
I’m glad she’s got an extensive backlist and more book releases coming because I definitely want to read more by this author! Big 5 stars!
I envisioned hunkalicious Boris Kodjoe as Ty. He doesn’t have enough tats, but I’ve got a great imagination and could mentally tat him up.
I imagined Jennifer Garner or Rachel Weisz as Lexie. I think either of them could play her with the perfect mix of sweet, goof, and sass.