Hands-down best Special Edition I've ever read. I don't normally give category length books 5 stars because typically they tend to not have the spaceHands-down best Special Edition I've ever read. I don't normally give category length books 5 stars because typically they tend to not have the space to develop a really good story. This one proves that if you start off with a basic premise without trying to work in too many details, that a category-length book can be excellent.
Haley Foster is tired of being the good girl that everyone orders around. As a minister's daughter, she's spent her whole life doing exactly what people expect and never getting a chance to experience anything. When the fiance her father and his congregation has picked out for her expresses some last-minute doubts, she gets angry and sets out to do things she's never done: drink alcohol, dress in provocative clothes, wear makeup, cut her hair, and pick up men. And she runs away to eventually make it to Hawaii, starting out by driving to the Pacific Coast.
In Kansas, she runs across Kevin Harmon, U.S. Marshal. Kevin is in town delivering a prisoner to the federal pen and he wants nothing more to return to D.C. and his life there. The last thing he wants is to feel responsible for the beautiful naive woman who strikes up a conversation with him after he protects her. But when Kevin is injured helping out during a prison raid, and his mother calls him home to Possum Landing, TX, for some news she can't deliver over the phone, he can't help but take advantage of Haley's offer to drive him. They spend almost an entire week meandering through the states between, and of course, fall in love.
This was such a sweet story! It wasn't angsty or dark or complicated, it was just two people in a weird situation falling in love. Although Haley was unbelievably, absurdly naive for this day and age, it worked for her lifestyle, and I bought her and Kevin's connection and love. A-...more
It’s very rare that I come across one five star book in a whole month, let alone two in one weekend. Saturday, I was fed up with reading book after boIt’s very rare that I come across one five star book in a whole month, let alone two in one weekend. Saturday, I was fed up with reading book after book where the protagonists spend half the book bickering or just hating each other. It seems like no writer is willing to introduce genuine emotional tension, so they manufacture some reason that the hero and heroine can’t get along. Which is fine – once in a while. But book, after book, after book seemed to be like that, so I took a much-need break. Luckily for me, Shawna had just reviewed this book, and it sounded exactly like what I was looking for.
And it was, all that and more.
I won’t waste time summarizing the story; I just want to rehash everything I loved about it.
-Russ, the hero, a strong, no-nonsense hunky cop with an ooey gooey center – especially when it comes to Laura. I swear I melted into a pile of mush every time he called her bunny. His thriftiness was pretty funny, too, though understandable on a cop’s salary when he’s raising his younger brother.
-Laura, our intrepid heroine, who was left deaf after a childhood bout with meningitis, but has tried very hard to live a normal life despite it. Although she’s kind of at a crossroads when she meets Russ – she left college to help her mom after her dad passed away – she definitely knows what she doesn’t want from life, and that’s to continue on the path she’s on. Her blunt proposition to Russ left me chuckling, and her spirit, independence and spunk were definitely something I admired and wish I saw more of in Romancelandia (as opposed to just being told the heroine is independent and spunky without any evidence).
-Russ’ relationship with Sean, his younger brother. I loved that it wasn’t completely up to Laura to help them re-establish a normal relationship, and that each brother bent a little to repair it.
-That the villain didn’t veer from his character and immediately begin trying to kill Laura. He was an identity theft and just wanted to get his hands on Laura’s money, not hurt her, and he didn’t even try until pushed into a corner. That was solid characterization, and I’m glad McCarthy didn’t try to convince me that this guy could go from thief to killer without any provocation.
-Laura’s cat, who was a great secondary character and helped show Laura (and me) just how sweet Russ was. After all, if that cat bit me before, during or after sex, I don’t think I’d have been so nice to him.
-And, finally, the romance. Russ and Laura were made for each other, and although there were times that both of them doubted that they could have any future, I was left with no doubt in my mind that they were deeply, irrevocably in love and going to live a long, happy, humorous and sexy life together. A
A fast read that I expected to be fun and sexy, but had a much more emotional draw than anticipated, this book would be good for those who enjoyed JilA fast read that I expected to be fun and sexy, but had a much more emotional draw than anticipated, this book would be good for those who enjoyed Jill Shalvis' Instant Attraction.
Robyn Montgomery is returning to her hometown for her ten-year class reunion no longer the girl she used to me. Now she's thin, attractive, she has a great career, and a hot date. Until the date - her media-mogul-celebrity boss and ex-boyfriend - backs out of not only escorting her, but out of emceeing the charity auction Robyn has arranged as well. When she runs into him at the ski lodge she's staying at, she realizes that he had never planned to help her out even though he was going to be there to for the taping of a ski competition and that he was only using her. So she quits. And just like that, two of the four things she had going for her are gone.
Then she meets ski patroller and EMT Sean Trenton, a nice, sexy uncomplicated man - until she realizes that he's former Olympic silver-medalist skier Sean Trenton. And the last thing she wants is to be on the vestiges of a man's fame again. But Sean - who retired due to injury, but there's much more to the story - has seen a woman who has pricked his interest in the first time in two years, and he can't let this opportunity pass him by.
Even though the story only took place over a week or so, and it was a week in which everything in Robyn's life fell apart, I totally bought why she and Sean fell in love. Although I think Sean was a little stupid to #1 hide things from Robyn as he got to know her more and #2 to make any kind of agreement with Damon (Robyn's ex), he was basically a good guy who just wanted an umcomplicated life with Robyn, although he doesn't realize it until almost the end.
This was a fast, sweet story, and well worth the time. B...more
This was a good conclusion to the Chase brothers series (I'm kind of hoping that she has some about the Murphy siblings, but I haven't looked yet).
MaThis was a good conclusion to the Chase brothers series (I'm kind of hoping that she has some about the Murphy siblings, but I haven't looked yet).
Matt Chase is the most handsome of the Chase brothers - and the last one single. He's used to being underestimated because of his looks, and he despairs of ever finding true love like his brothers did. Tate Murphy is from the other side of the tracks, and between that and her figure - she's plus-sized - she doesn't think she has a chance in hell with Matt, though he is eye-candy. But when Matt first lays eyes on short, vuluptuous Tate, all bets are off. He crumbles into her hands, leaving Tate panicked about what a relationship between them would mean.
I love the Murphy family, and like I said above, I would love to see stories revolving around the unmarried siblings. Tate is very self-conscious about her weight because of her drunken father's emotional abuse, and because of the people in town, some of whom make it their life's goal to make the Murphys miserable because of the upbringing.
The thing I like most about LD's writing is it doesn't end when ILY's are exchanged - that's just the beginning, because no relationship is perfect, and everyone has their own baggage to get over, even if you do love someone. I can't wait to read more by this author. B...more
I did enjoy this installment of the series better than the first, but authors piling on as much emotional dreck as they can on heroes is getting old..I did enjoy this installment of the series better than the first, but authors piling on as much emotional dreck as they can on heroes is getting old... fast. It's not bad enough that these brothers are Seminus demons and each is getting ready to go through the 'sgenisis change that can change them into mindless raping animals. Oh, no, each one also has to have a curse (or two or three) on top of that, and it increases more with each book, it seems.
I really liked Runa, but I thought she gave in to Shade way too quickly. It's not even the fact that she walked in on him with two other women and then - while running away from that - was attacked and turned into a werewolf. I was more pissed off that Shade didn't seem to really be interested in her until after her change; in parts, it's almost as if he liked the werewolf, but not the woman who went with it. And his Umber side, where he sees the darkness in females and has to help them release it - that was the weakest part of the book. If you're going to include BDSM and it's not to bring sexual pleasure to either one of the protagonists, why include it? Okay, Shade's past with it provided some character development to him, Runa, and Wraith, but other than that, it felt out of place and extremely uncomfortable. I didn't really buy that it helped Runa, and I don't think Ione sold it like she believed it either.
However, I am looking forward to Wraith's book, and even more so to come conclusion of Kynan & Gem's relationship. B
BTW: on a formatting note, this is one of the best formatted ebooks I've ever read since I bought my Sony Reader. No crazy jumps in lines, no irregular spacing, it read exactly like a mass-market....more
Okay, so Ione built up some really dark expectations of Wraith and failed to deliver, but IMO what we're left with is still the strongest in the serieOkay, so Ione built up some really dark expectations of Wraith and failed to deliver, but IMO what we're left with is still the strongest in the series.
At the starting point of this book, half-demon half-vampire Wraith has already forced the 'sgenisis, the change all Seminus demons go through that makes them potent and gives them the unrelenting desire to impregnate females. However, it's not working like he thought it would; he thought it was make him a sex-craving animal with no human conscience or emotions, but for some reason, though he craves sex, he's basically still the same. Until he finds out that he has been poisoned by a toxin that has no cure, and unless he obtains a certain charm, he will die. The problem is that the charm is being held by a human female, and to obtain it, he has to seduce her virginity away from her. Because of past traumas in his life, Wraith considers human females off limits, especially virgin ones. But when he finds out that his life force is tied to the existence of Underworld General, and therefore his brothers' as well, Wraith is willing to take one for the team.
The carrier of the charm, Serena Kelley, has something else in mind. Although she's wildly attracted to who she thinks is no one more than a fellow treasure hunter, she can never know sexual intimacy in its fullest, because to do so would cause the disease she contracted as a child to progress and eventually kill her.
As Wraith goes back and forth with pushing forward in his plan to seduce Serena or not, he begins to find out just why his brothers would be crazy enough to take a mate,and how hard it is to choose between your own personal happiness and the well-being of your family and friends.
In reality, Wraith gave in much quicker than I thought he would, and with much less angst, which just made me like him more. And Serena showed a selflessness that was on par with Madeline from Garwood's Honour's Splendor (sp? I know one is spelled with a "u"in the title). A good conclusion to an interesting trilogy, although I was bummed by the quick resultion of Kynan & Gem, and am not at all looking forward to any book featuring Seminus assassin Lore, should Ione choose to write. B...more