4 ½ stars – Erotic Georgian/Historical Romance Novella
Lydia Trent is a romantic young lady of seventeen looking forward to finally celebrating the ann...more4 ½ stars – Erotic Georgian/Historical Romance Novella
Lydia Trent is a romantic young lady of seventeen looking forward to finally celebrating the announcement of a formal betrothal to the subject of her girlhood infatuation, Marcus, Lord Russell. Although Marcus recognizes his duty to play the biddable fiancé, he’s less than enthusiastic and cynical about being forced into an attachment to a naïve girl barely out of the schoolroom. After getting a bit tipsy and giving Lydia her first glimpse of passion, Marcus embarks on a career of political diplomacy, leaving his fiancée behind.
After six years of waiting in the wings and trying to get Marcus to agree on a wedding date, Lydia has had enough of his indifference and is ready to move on. She sends Marcus a letter requesting to dissolve their promise of marriage. Marcus has spent the past six years carousing and advancing his diplomatic career but is shocked by Lydia’s demand. After all, she’s the perfect fiancée. Having her in his pocket keeps the marriage minded mamas from harassing him, their family ties suit his political aspirations, and her dowry will provide a stable income when he’s finally ready to settle down in the future.
Marcus sets out to win Lydia back using all the weapons in his armory, including diplomacy, flattery, and seduction, and if those don’t work, then he might have to just force her hand through ruination. But Lydia has grown into a beautiful, bold, intelligent, and headstrong woman no longer willing to blindly, ardently swoon at his feet, and Marcus soon learns that swaying her back won’t be as easy as he thought. It’s through his attempt to seduce Lydia into submission that Marcus finally sees her true character, comes to admire the intriguing woman she’s become, and realizes the damage he’s caused by his neglect and indifference. He might have to engage a part of himself he’s never given before...his heart.
I really enjoyed this charming read. It’s sensual and romantic and the storyline, characters, dialogue, and historical details are perfectly crafted for a novella. In terms of heat level, it’s erotic, but tasteful and appropriate for the story. A Breach of Promise is a great historical romance and shows a lot of “promise” for this author whom I’m hoping we’ll see more from. 4 ½ stars!
Book received from author, Victoria Vane, and Ellora’s Cave Romantica Publishing in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.
A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! This time the author endorsements and reader hype are more than justified! I haven’t been this blown away...more5+ stars – Paranormal Romance
A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! This time the author endorsements and reader hype are more than justified! I haven’t been this blown away by a paranormal romance debut or as energized and jazzed about a new PNR series in a long time. Not since diving into the addictive worlds of J.R. Ward’s bold, unbeatable Black Dagger Brotherhood, Lara Adrian’s mesmerizing Midnight Breed, Larissa Ione’s distinctive, dark Demonica, and Nalini Singh’s unique Psy-Changeling have I gotten such a thrill from discovering a new paranormal romance series. Dragon Bound, the first book in Thea Harrison’s innovative, compelling Elder Races, gave me the same kind of high. I absolutely loved it!
Paranormal romance was my first foray into the vast world of romance after devouring the Twilight Saga and jonesing for more mature (and hotter!) fare and therefore will always have a special place in my heart. But after reading so many and finding blissful escape in other romance sub-genres that I love, I find I’m much more selective about PNR. I’m ecstatic that I’ve found a new series that’s got me excited about paranormal romance once again!
Dragon shifter Dragos is one of the most ancient and powerful Wyr in the world and his rule over New York City is absolute. Nobody defies him, so he’s enraged and enchanted that a slip of a woman like Pia Giovanni would dare to steal from his prized treasure. Half-breed Pia was raised to closely guard her half-Wyr nature from other wyrkind, even if that means becoming a thief to protect her secrets from her ex-boyfriend’s threats of blackmail. The last thing she needs is to anger and arouse the fiercest Wyr predator in existence, but that’s exactly what happens when Pia invades a dragon’s private hoard. In exchange for a pardon and her very life, Dragos makes Pia a bargain she can’t refuse, and she finds herself thrust into the mysterious, dangerous world of magic she’s fought so desperately to avoid. If only she could resist the smoldering attraction that burns hotter than dragonfire between her and Dragos!
Dragos...Be still my predator lovin' heart! YUM! He’s a hot, dangerous, possessive, dominating alpha hero used to getting anything and anyone he wants and always having everything his way, and he’s completely undone by his unfamiliar feelings for Pia. It was hilarious to witness his attempts to tame and gentle his beastly side for Pia, and sexy-as-all-get-out when he let the beast loose in their lovemaking. YOWZA! I loved Dragos and Pia together, and they had such funny, sexy banter and explosive chemistry. Pia’s resistance to Dragos annoyed me at times because I would have rolled over and begged for him, but her spunk was also charming.
One of the things that impressed me the most is how the author created such an imaginative, complex alternate modern society with so many fascinating varieties of magical beings (shifters, raptors, fae, elves, witches, goblins) and yet managed to avoid bogging down the story with too many heavy details and excessive world-building. There is an amazing cast of secondary characters that has me very eager for future books in the series.
With a hotter-than-hell, possessive alpha hero, a quirky, feisty heroine, fast-paced action, clever dialogue, sexy banter, snarky humor, scorching sexual tension, strong, intriguing secondary characters, and steamy love scenes, Dragon Bound has everything I crave in a romance. It kept me thoroughly entertained!
I highly recommend this for fans of Ward, Ione, Singh, Cole, Showalter, and Feehan, and anyone who enjoys an excellent paranormal romance. I can’t wait for Storm's Heart to see what’s in store next for this thrilling series. Big 5 stars!
A few of my favorite lines:
Oh my God, not only is he older than the Grand Canyon, but he’s like the pope and the Fae King and the president of the United States all rolled up into one. To some ancient cultures he had been a god. He was going to hurt her so bad before he killed her so dead, and all she could think of was how hot his kiss had been in the dream and how delicate the touch of his finger was as it traced down her body.
For God’s sake. The male was injured and here she was ogling him like a pervert in a porn store.
He rested his cheek against her head and rubbed her back. “I am cursed with a terminal case of curiosity,” he said. “I am jealous, selfish, acquisitive, territorial and possessive. I have a terrible temper, and I know I can be a cruel son of a bitch.” He cocked his head. “I used to eat people, you know.”
I’ve pondered my thoughts on this for a couple of days because my reactions to it were so strong that I’m still st...more5 stars – Historical/Regency Romance
I’ve pondered my thoughts on this for a couple of days because my reactions to it were so strong that I’m still struggling to adequately express my feelings into a review. Not since Charlotte Featherstone’s Addicted and Sinful have I been so emotionally raw while/after reading a historical romance, and this definitely reminded me a little of those, at least in terms of evoking such powerful, conflicting responses.
It’s an unapologetically honest, emotionally devastating, lushly sensual, intense, heartbreaking, explosively passionate, and eloquently written Regency romance that challenged, slayed, and moved me, often all at the same time. There were moments that twisted my guts like a pretzel and had me shedding tears of anguish in sympathy with the heroine’s torment.
Without giving away too much of a spoiler, (view spoiler)[there is an element of blatant, detailed cheating by the hero, Diccan. And even though he has serious reasons, however debatable they may be, for engaging in an affair for crown and country, the scenes and the references to it afterward are still very difficult to endure. (hide spoiler)] At times I wanted Grace to go all Stephen King Carrie on Diccan, the ton, and everyone else who had misjudged and mistreated her in life. But on the other hand, I often felt extreme frustration with Grace’s lowly opinion of herself and that she tolerated and perpetuated such abusive, cruel treatment and disdain from others. It’s not an easy read by any means, and there are facets that are very hard to digest, accept, and forgive, but I think the brutal honesty and realism is partly what makes this such an evocative, unforgettable read.
There are endless “marriage of convenience” stories and so often the road to love is, however romantic, much too idealistic, brief, and easy. Never a Gentleman is a much more candid depiction of how it would truly be for a notorious, attractive rake and spy who doesn’t desire marriage to find himself begrudgingly wedded to a plain, ungainly, physically disabled spinster. Although Diccan admires Grace, he still feels resentment for being forced by circumstances out of their control into a situation that interfered with his plans, risked his career, and stole his bachelor’s freedom. And bearing witness to Grace’s unremitting disappointments, unfulfilled desires, pain, and shame was so excruciatingly heartbreaking that there were moments when I had actual physical reactions as if I was suffering right along with her...with scalding hot tears running down my face, gut tightening, and heart racing and twisting in my chest.
Eileen Dreyer is a very talented author, and the crucial insight she gives into Diccan’s motives, reactions, and agonizing internal conflict is what kept me from outright throwing the book across the room on several occasions. And perhaps an even more astounding credit to the author is that I ultimately, reluctantly forgave and became slightly enamored of Diccan, which is no small feat, considering the utter hell he put Grace and me through. And the HEA was all the more satisfying and moving because it was hard-fought, beautiful, and genuine.
Never a Gentleman is a remarkable, poignant, and profound romance with intrigue and angst galore that really put me through the emotional cheese grater and necessitated wearing my big girl panties, but it’s also one that I won’t soon forget. Big 5 stars!
5 stars – Paranormal/Vampire/Urban Fantasy Romance
Thoughts Before Reading:
The fact that this takes place in Austin, TX and the addictive sample on Kin...more5 stars – Paranormal/Vampire/Urban Fantasy Romance
Thoughts Before Reading:
The fact that this takes place in Austin, TX and the addictive sample on Kindle that gave an awesome glimpse of the author's writing and of the unusual storyline definitely have me intrigued.
Thoughts After Reading:
I'm partly biased because this is set in my own city of Austin, Texas, which definitely contributed to my reading experience, but it's a very well-written, intelligent, and dark paranormal/urban fantasy romance that manages to be unique, despite that there are so many vampire series out there. Miranda's healing and personal transformation is emotionally powerful, gripping, and moving, and Prime vampire of the South David Solomon's sexy, intriguing mix of badass warrior, computer genius, ruthless political leader, and caring protector was swoon-worthy. Their connection is magnetic and believable, and the relationship development is realistically paced, especially considering Miranda's draining gifts and that she's a survivor of a brutal assault. They're wonderful, complex characters, and I really loved them as a couple. There's also a fascinating cast of secondary characters that I look forward to learning more about.
It's a gritty, affecting, and compelling series debut, and I can't wait to see what's next for Miranda and David in Shadowflame. 5 stars!
The premise of “forbidden” love between a Roman centurion who’s charged with leading the fight to eliminate enemy...more3 ½ stars – Erotic Historical Romance
The premise of “forbidden” love between a Roman centurion who’s charged with leading the fight to eliminate enemy tribes in Britain and the princess of a powerful Druid clan who’s gifted with magic seemed like a unique concept for an erotic romance. And I thought it sounded a little bit like the movie King Arthur with Clive Owen and Keira Knightley, which I loved.
It started off really good, and the star-crossed love affair between battle scarred warrior Maximus and beautiful, ethereal Carys was intensely erotic from the beginning. But then somewhere along the way, the story started to drag a bit, and there was a lot of time spent on talk of goddesses, clan politics, magic, and spells. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it just got a bit boring and repetitive at times and took away from the romance. It’s labeled as an erotic historical romance and although it’s definitely steamy and the love scenes between Maximus and Carys are indeed passionate and sensual, it’s not overly explicit. In fact, I was in the mood for a little less talk and a lot more action, so I would have liked it even better had there been a bit more heat.
It’s an interesting idea and time period for a romance, and I liked the author’s writing style. I’ll definitely check out the next book, Captive, when it comes out. 3 ½ stars.(less)
Wow! I loved this! It's an emotional, sensual, and engaging romance between a free-spirited, indecorous, rebel h...more5 stars – Edwardian/Historical Romance
Wow! I loved this! It's an emotional, sensual, and engaging romance between a free-spirited, indecorous, rebel heroine who's brazen ways mask a fragile soul and a steadfast, honorable, strait-laced, to-die-for duke who can't resist her scandalously tempting allure. I loved the complexities of the characters and the chemistry, connection, and passion between Julia and Aidan. Scandal of the Year is another Laura Lee Guhrke favorite! I just wish the wait wasn't so long for her next book, Trouble at the Wedding. 5 sigh-worthy stars!
This was the pain of light and beauty and a man's tender kiss. It was the burn in your eyes when you looked into the bright, shining sun, and the pinch in your chest when you saw the first green shoots of springtime, and the lump in your throat when you heard the sound of a newborn baby's cry. It was life, life, life.
(view spoiler)["I looked into your eyes that night, and they were so reliable and so steady and strong, and I felt as if I'd landed on a rock in a very stormy sea. I turned it down, but now, I would be a fool to turn it down again. Because it's what I need more than anything else in the world. I need you, Aidan, not to be chains that weigh me down, but to be the rock I can cling to when the waves are too high."(hide spoiler)]