Dishing Up Desire is another wonderful addition to the Entangled Publishing Indulgence line. I love these shorter novels, they really seem to fit in m...moreDishing Up Desire is another wonderful addition to the Entangled Publishing Indulgence line. I love these shorter novels, they really seem to fit in my summer so far and provide me with wonderful stories to get lost in for a couple of hours.
Character Development: Kirin and Blake, two very interesting characters with somewhat mysterious pasts. Both have a drive in the present to make something of themselves. Kirin really just wants to get her life and career back on track. Blake has something to prove by changing public opinion of Kirin and then he will have the company of his dreams. But along the way of course there is romance. But first I enjoyed getting to know Kirin and Blake. Kirin was a little hard to like at first, but as I got to know her through the book, I really began to enjoy her and see a little bit of the everyday woman in her. Blake is flat out hot and a good man when you really dig into who he is. I liked him, liked how he falls for Kirin and like how he grows in the book. Both characters have growth and are well-developed for a short book. Also the romance is not instantaneous if that is one of the things that bothers you about a shorter book. The attraction is there, but the romance develops a little slower.
Plot: The plot is built around Kirin and Blake, first in the restoration of her image and second in their romance. It's a fast read and kept me engaged through the entire book. I wanted to turn each page and see how the plot would unfold and how Kirin and Blake would develop.
Final Thoughts: If you are looking for a short read to jump-start your reading and satisfy your taste for romance, then Dishing Up Desire is just the book for you. With interesting characters and a different plot, it was one of the books that has started me back on a reading binge. These Indulgence titles are just the right pace and length for these busy summer days!
Okay so I looked at the reviews on Goodreads for this book before I started reading it and they are honestly a mixed bag. But I challenge you, if you...moreOkay so I looked at the reviews on Goodreads for this book before I started reading it and they are honestly a mixed bag. But I challenge you, if you enjoy a good rock star love story then this is just the book for you. I really enjoyed reading Famously Engaged and after reading it I realize that we all have different opinions of books we read. So now I'll talk about what worked for me.
Character Development: This is a short book, so I knew going in it, it would not have the character development of a 300+ page book. The author just can't do that and move the story along in 180 pages. However I found that I was able to get to know Jake and Beth easily during this story. Their quirks, their history all were presented through the book so the reader is able to get to know them. Yes they get together kind of quick, again this is a limitation of a shorter novel and I didn't have a problem with it. I understood the characters and their motivation. I actually really enjoyed watching Jake and Beth fall for each other and begin to change themselves, not for the other person but as a modification to fit another person into their lives. It was a great story to watch unfold, fireworks and all.
Plot: The plot revolves around the characters falling for each other and the problems Jake being a rock star presents. The engagement from the beginning was a great plot device to me and as I mentioned I really enjoyed watching the story unfold. It was fast paced and I finished the book during the evening while my son was at Boy Scouts with his Dad.
Final Thoughts: I found Famously Engaged to be a heartwarming and fun book. It has interesting characters in Jake and Beth (and those surrounding Jake as well). It has a fast moving plot that made the book an easy read. I was into the book from the first page and enjoyed it to the end. It had conflict, it had sarcasm and joking between characters, it had the spark between the characters and it had some steamy sex. What more do you need?
I love small town settings, interesting pasts and anything hot and steamy and Fair Play comes through with all of those.
Told fr...moreI love small town settings, interesting pasts and anything hot and steamy and Fair Play comes through with all of those.
Told from the alternating point-of-view of both Noah and Ashlyn makes Fair Play a very fun book to read. Not only do you know that one side is really confuse about the relationship and things that are happening between them, but you know what both sides are thinking. I loved hearing from each of them. They both have things to deal with and are trying to figure out the chemistry between the two of them even though each is sure the other hates him or her. It's amusing and the chemistry soars. Their banter is especially fun and one of my favorite things about the book. But I also love that Noah is so protective of Ashlyn. That really touched my heart.
Throwing Noah and Ashlyn together so she can finish the play that could save the town, makes a very interesting premise and it also makes the sparks fly. Add in a somewhat mysterious man from the past (we know who and what he did, but have to figure out what he's up during the book). But the main focus is on the developing attraction between Noah and Ashlyn. I loved this, it really worked in the book and kept me turning the pages. I was thoroughly involved in their outcome.
Fair Play provides an interesting premise, builds on it, holds my attention and makes me care about the characters. It's a fun and spark-filled romance with the great back drop of a small town and some of the people in it. All-in-all it's a great romance read for the summer or for anytime!(less)
I really enjoyed this book to a certain extent. It was exciting, it had interesting characters in the way of Desperate Housewives and it had a good su...moreI really enjoyed this book to a certain extent. It was exciting, it had interesting characters in the way of Desperate Housewives and it had a good suspense plot going for it. But one thing let me down, the ending. So let me explain.
I liked Emily and I cared about her and her husband. The book jumps right into her association with Caroline and the members of her group and the small southern town dynamic. Full of disfunctional women, the book was amusing in a dark way. And then bam there is the mystery, which I enjoyed. Enter pregnant Emily trying to get to the bottom of things when she herself is being harassed. Is it the same person perpetrating the crime of the book or is it someone else. Ms. Heaberlin does an excellent job of weaving the plot together, going back and forth in time some to fill in the blanks. Emily feels like an unreliable narrator, as do any of the women she is involved with, but is she? That was the fun of the book, getting to know Emily and trying to figure out truth from lies. I love books like this.
And then came the ending, and maybe not the ending, but the last few pages of the book. Things tied up nicely, I was surprised as I hoped I would be but then the last few pages left me feeling like "what the heck?" I honestly think I missed something or need to go back and read it again. It's not a major thing because like I said everything was tied up well. I was just a little lost with what I believe was the Epilogue.
But overall I thoroughly enjoyed this book and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to people who like southern novels where all is not what it seems. It's very enjoyable, moves at a fast pace and has characters that were interesting and had me continually turning the page. So give it a try and if you figure out the ending please message me. :)(less)
If you are looking for a great romantic suspense, heavy on the suspense, look no further than For Love or Money. I found it to be a thrill-ride that I...moreIf you are looking for a great romantic suspense, heavy on the suspense, look no further than For Love or Money. I found it to be a thrill-ride that I could not get off of.
Characters: Holly, I loved Holly, she is so every woman. She's leery of men with good reason. She's home to help her mother with the business and she's longing to get back to her high-stakes job in Seattle, or is she? She's also curious as to what happened to her friend and becomes very embroiled in the case that her ex-fiance, JC is lead detective on. Of course this leads to sparks of the very interesting kind. JC isn't as developed as Holly, but I liked his wit. He's also very determined to solve this case and keep Holly out of it, but finally realizes she won't stay out of it. The real fun is in their back and forth. The dialog between them had me laughing and fanning myself as the sparks flew.
Plot: The plot drives this one and that's why I say it's heavy on the suspense. There is romance, but I think the book is mainly about what happened to Holly's friend. And this isn't one of those books where the lead character bumbles into everything. Holly genuinely sets out to learn from the various people that surrounded her friend and learns more than JC does sometimes. I never felt her being involved was far-fetched and I liked how she went about trying to solve things while the whole time she is also facing her demons and learning more about herself.
For Love or Money is a great romantic suspense read. I had a hard time putting it down and I look forward to reading more by Cathy Perkins. And also I would like to say how great the new Entangled Suspense imprint it. This is the second book I've read in the imprint this week and both have been stellar. If you want to add some suspense to your summer I highly suggest this book!
What was not to love about Out of Control? Kick-butt heroine who knows when to lean on someone else, check. Kick-butt alpha male hero who is definitel...moreWhat was not to love about Out of Control? Kick-butt heroine who knows when to lean on someone else, check. Kick-butt alpha male hero who is definitely more than he appears, check. Interesting suspense, check. Believable romance, check. It had everything I was looking for in a romantic suspense! Now onto the specifics:
Plot: I normally start with characters, but since I feel this book was slightly more suspense than romance (but don't worry there is still romance) the plot is more of the steering factor. The characters are important too, but the suspense seemed to drive the book, at least to me. From oil wells in the Gulf to one in Texas and then overseas this book offers the variety of different locales. I loved the information about what the team did to stop the oil rig fires. It was fascinating but the plotting really got going with the suspense of who set the fires and then onto finally solving and proving the crime which takes place overseas and really added to my interest. I don't know much about oil drilling, oil rigs and the fires but really feel Ms. Feagan did her research. And her research really shines with the overseas part of the book. I was fascinated, captivated and just thoroughly entrenched in this book due to the plot.
Characters: The characters are stars in their own right. Blair is a female in a career full of males and she comes from a fancy family. So many contrasts about her, and I loved it. She also didn't pretend to be something she wasn't. She was tough, but underneath it she seemed to understand she needed to lean on someone. Now maybe she didn't want to but she understood it. Nick is alpha to the hilt but kind and gentler with Blair. He also has secrets which are fascinating and really add to the story. And the chemistry between Nick and Blair is scorching. You can feel the heat between them and it's sexy. As I mentioned in the interview I loved Conaway. So snarky and fun, yet she pulls no punches as well. She will get what she wants through sheer determination. And I loved that she and Blair clicked. Conaway really added to the story and sometimes it's hard to have that third character that you really like, but Ms. Feagan did it and now I can't wait to get Conaway's story as well!
Out of Control was an amazing edge-of-your-seat read. It took me one day to read (I had interruptions). I just had to know how it would turn out and kept turning the page. I was engrossed by the plot and I cared about the characters. I loved learning new things and visiting new places. It was one of those reads that I am still thinking about days later. I want more of Nick and Blair and hope to see at least a little of them in Conaway's book! If you love romantic suspense then this is a great book to read! (less)
Review is from my blog and the first paragraph references a Top Ten list posted by Kathy Lyons there.
First I have to say after reading Dream Nights wi...moreReview is from my blog and the first paragraph references a Top Ten list posted by Kathy Lyons there.
First I have to say after reading Dream Nights with the CEO, all of the above statements are true. Number 9 hit me the most because I wasn't thinking about anything but Wyatt, Megan and erotic dream sex while reading this. Seriously, it sounds like the author tooting her own horn above, but I think she made my review for me!
Wyatt and Megan are relatable. Megan is trying to make something of herself and already has. She's the maid who almost didn't finish college, yet now she is assistant to a multi-millionaire and really his right hand woman. I loved that. Yet she deals with normal life (an annoying Mom who wants her to get married) and she deals with wanting more whether from her job or from her boss. And that brings us to Wyatt, yes he's a multi-millionaire who buys B&B's and develops them into something more. He has a business brain, but he has a block in the romance department, or at least he thinks he does. It makes him so much more human. And his lusting for Megan makes him just plain lovable. And Kathy's use of comic books, just another way to really bring him down to earth. I just love him and love him even more with Megan.
The plot is fun. A haunted B&B with erotic shared dreams. It doesn't get much more take-me-away from reality than that. And honestly I needed that. School is out, I had a hard time getting into another book this week and this one drew me right in. I read half of the book in one sitting, got up fixed supper and then finished the book. Loved it. It moves at a very fast-paced and I either wanted to know what would happen next or where the dreams would lead next . . .
I loved every aspect about Dream Nights with the CEO. It's not deep but it sure is fun. There is humor, there are erotic dreams, and there is hot chemistry between the two main characters. It is a perfect mindless enjoyable read for the summer or anytime you need your nights steamed up. The humor is a great touch as well, keeping things fun and flirty. I loved Megan and Wyatt's story and can't wait to see what else Kathy has in store for us in this series!(less)
Can I just say this book is scorching! Forget 50 Shades, this book is real and hot. I'll just say that Tessa definitely has chemistry down to a scienc...moreCan I just say this book is scorching! Forget 50 Shades, this book is real and hot. I'll just say that Tessa definitely has chemistry down to a science in this book and move onto my thoughts on characters and plot.
Characters: Let's start with Story, Story comes to NYC from a broken engagement and she's trying to make sense of life on her own and she runs into Daniel, who is sex-on-a-stick. The chemistry is immediate for both her and Daniel and she can't get him out of her head especially after that chemistry explodes between them. I like Story, she's very relatable. She's a teacher off work for the summer so it explains why she can drop everything to go see her father. She's sarcastic and she doesn't want to be ruled by a man. Yet she comes to understand love very slowly and starts to understand what a man truly caring for her means. In the meantime she is having quite a bit of fun with Daniel and again this is scorching!
Then there is Daniel, Daniel has secrets and scars. He's the ultimate bad boy with more notches on his bedpost than Story can even think about. Yet he's perfect for Story. He starts to fall for her and realizes that he doesn't want to be a mindless romp for women or even Story any more. He wants more meaning and he wants it with Story. Watching him fall for story and understand his life and himself better was nothing short of amazing. I am pretty positive any woman reading this will want a Daniel after this (I have to admit I have one, though he's not a scarred bad boy). And the sex, again did I mention scorching? Daniel, ahem, has such a way with words . . .
Plot: The forbidden love plot works great in this book. Daniel isn't supposed to be around Story as declared by her Dad and his mentor, but somehow he can't help the attraction. Story can't help the attraction either though she feels she should really be on her feet more after her broken engagement before entering a relationship. I loved watching these two fall for each other slowly (at least slowly in the course of the book). And I loved the heat they generated, yet you could really tell they were falling for each other and it wasn't purely physical. I somewhat saw the ending (not the happy-ever-after, that's a given) but there were still elements that surprised me. So I was thrilled with how the plot ran from beginning to end.
Officer Off Duty moves fast, holds your interest and has you cheering for Story and Daniel from their first encounter at the snack machine. I loved the characters and I loved how the plotline unfolded. If you haven't read Tessa I suggest you give her a try and have a fan nearby. :)(less)
I was excited by SEAL of Honor when I first heard about it and I understood it would be part of a series. After reading it, I cannot wait to get more...moreI was excited by SEAL of Honor when I first heard about it and I understood it would be part of a series. After reading it, I cannot wait to get more of the HORNET boys and their stories. Ms. Burrows did what I thought was an excellent job putting this group of men together as an unit. They are a little unorganized and not quite working well together in this book, but I am betting by a few books from now, they will be getting along just fine!
And fine, fine is defined by Gabe Bristow. Wow, this man is hot, yet a little stiff personality-wise. I like him from the beginning, but love watching him lose more and more control around Audrey. Now Audrey is a definite free-spirit with some backbone. Yes she does have her flighty moments, but all-in-all when the going gets tough, Audrey can handle with the best of them. I enjoyed the interplay between Gabe and Audrey and liked watching them fall for each other. I also liked getting a little bit of back story here and there on each of the other team members. I cannot wait for each of their books, they were all intriguing and they definitely have stories to tell besides the romance that will come in each book.
The plot was great, I thought I had figured out who the bad guy was early on, but there is quite a twist I did not see coming, so well played Ms. Burrows! The action and multiple plots going on were fascinating and I loved the setting in Bogota. It was definitely a fast-paced book that was hard for me to put down.
If you like good-mercenary/SEAL books, then this is just the series for you. I can only imagine that the stories will get even better with some of the more complex characters and yet it's hard to imagine anything better than Gabe and Audrey's story. Was it completely realistic? I'm not sure, but it's fiction to me and I enjoyed every minute of my reading experience with SEAL of Honor.
Wow, just wow. This book explores so much in a realm I have never really thought about even though I have a friend who used surrogacy. The Offering is...moreWow, just wow. This book explores so much in a realm I have never really thought about even though I have a friend who used surrogacy. The Offering is touching, painful at times and joyful all at the same time and well worth the read. The characters add a richness, especially Amanda's (Mandy's) extended family. Even though Mandy is a gringa, and doesn't understand their Spanish all the time, she seems to fit in well with this Cuban-American family her husband has brought her into. While there are some difficulties with her and the family, I think Ms. Hunt nails it with the closeness and the fact that when there is trouble the family will always be there for you. I enjoyed Mandy, she had a naivete about her that made her the right character for the book. But then again I was right with her when thinking about some of the ethical things that have to do with surrogacy. She's also very much in love with her husband which is evident, even though he is in and out of the book. Amelia is a great secondary character in that she has her own problems but she and Mandy are there for each other even when they don't see eye-to-eye. While I would have liked a little more of Gideon in the book, I understand that he was in and out of their lives because of his job. And of course the surrogate family, they are an entity of their own and while we mostly see them through Mandy's eyes, I find a realism in that, especially when things change. That's when you realize that what you might be seeing might just be something different from the reality.
There are so many layers to this book, yet it reads quick and I never felt bogged down when I was reading it. Mandy battles with whether do be a surrogate, how to best fit into family, how to love a husband that she never knows what he is doing, and then what to do when the unforeseen happens. Through the book each trial strengthens Mandy into becoming the woman she is by the end of the book. It's not easy, but life seldom is. I felt for her during the whole book. I shed tears at one point and felt complete joy at others. Ms. Hunt had me so involved in the plot that I felt I was there in the middle of Mandy and her family.
Thought-provoking, non-preachy, hard-to-put down all describe The Offering. It is a book who's message and characters will stay with me for awhile as I peel through the layers and really think through what happened in the book. I like books that do that. Entertain me while reading, but make me really think when they are over. The Offering is a stellar book and one I can highly recommend.
Abby Road was a fun read for me. Well mostly fun, Abby's "road" to her HEA was rather rocky, but it was interesting to watch. I like books like this w...moreAbby Road was a fun read for me. Well mostly fun, Abby's "road" to her HEA was rather rocky, but it was interesting to watch. I like books like this where the main character has to learn something. I don't mind that most of the romance is off-screen and the focus is on the one character. I think Abby Road is a very good book if you don't put labels on it like romance or chicklit and just read it to enjoy a great book.
First there is Abby. She's a pop star who's having trouble since her brother's death. She's not dealing with things and her shrink has decided it would be best if she took the summer off, so she heads off to Florida to spend the summer with her sister. Of course while there, she meets the handsome and wonderful Todd. They fall for each other and not much is written about this, but I don't have a problem with it. Todd is a great character himself, he seems to have secrets and character flaws as well, but together they seem to work at least as much as we see them and I believed they were falling for each other.
Then the story moves back to Abby in her life in pop and things go down hill for Abby and Todd and you get to the real meat of the story. This is where I really got into the story. Secondary characters came to life, Abby really started to shine and move forward. I'm not spoiling anything, but let's just say that things start to move fast and the book really comes together as Abby herself does.
I loved the look into her life as a pop star. I loved the secondary characters of the band. I really liked how Abby cared about other people sometimes to the detriment of herself. And I like how she grows and changes. I feel that Abby Road is an empowering book, as Abby learns to stand on her own two feet again. Yes things seem to jump forward at times, but I understood why and the fact that they did and the story didn't get bogged down in details made me enjoy it all the more.
There is a romance, there is a happy ending, there is character growth, there is a bad guy and there is a great plot. Abby Road had everything to keep me enthralled while reading for a few days and even while reading while waiting for ball practice to end. It's a fun heartfelt and interesting novel. A great springtime or beach read. So grab it and fall in love with Abby and her love of the Beatles just like I did.(less)
Sandra Byrd has done it again. She has thoroughly engaged me in a historical novel with intrigue romance and characters I truly care about. Roses Have...moreSandra Byrd has done it again. She has thoroughly engaged me in a historical novel with intrigue romance and characters I truly care about. Roses Have Thorns is a wonderful installment in the Ladies in Waiting series.
Elin in a wonderful Lady in Waiting to watch move through the ranks of Queen Elizabeth's court. As she comes to England as a foriegner from Sweden and decides to stay when a mutual interest develops between her and a man of high ranking in the court. But as she stays all is not as it seems and Elin who becomes Helena in her desire to become more English has to carve her place in the court. I love the strong will of Elin but the need for love both from a man and from her Queen. The need for friends and a husband as well as a sister-figure made her all the more real. I loved watching her growth in the court and as her strength and position grew I loved her even more. It was also interesting to see Elizabeth through her eyes. Elizabeth's strengths and weaknesses were envisioned through a lady of the court. It's a very interesting way to tell a historical and I loved this series because of it. The intimate look at the Queens has been fascinating.
So not only are the characters fascinating but the plot is amazing as well. The intrigues. It seems just when one plot against the Queen is figured out another is being hashed and I never knew who in the court could be trusted. And then the romances as well. The Queens' never realized romance and Elin's two different romances were beautiful and very realistic and really added to the plot.
Roses Have Thorns is an amazing historical depicting the life of Elizabeth I and her court. I felt like I intimately got to know Elin and Elizabeth both along with others in the court. I also felt like I got a great glimpse of court life and intrigue during this period. Ms. Byrd works wonders with both characters and plot to keep the reader engaged from the first page to the last. I always close her books eager for the next and Roses Have Thorns is no exception. I was sad to see it end and cannot wait to see what she offers us next!(less)