Kicking off a new historical romance series is A Wicked Pursuit by Isabella Bradford, the first in the Breconridge Brothers series.
As the eldest son of a duke, Harry Fitzroy is expected to marry well and start producing heirs – sooner rather than later. He thinks he has found his match in Julia Wetherby, the most beautiful girl of the season and the ideal catch for an amorous duke. However, when he visits her at her country home intending to propose, a simple horse riding expedition turns disastrous. Harry falls from his borrowed horse, unconscious in the woods whilst Julia returns home for help.
What Harry finds when he awakes is the watchful gaze of Julia’s sister, Lady Augusta, who has nursed him since his accident and kept a careful vigil at his bedside. His leg is broken in two places, carefully strapped to a splint and leaving him bed-bound for the foreseeable future, as well as a prisoner in the Wetherby family home. However, Gus seems to be his only companion, as Julia has abandoned him completely in the face of his disability and returned to London for the remainder of the season.
Whilst nursing him back to health, and becoming increasingly infuriated at his demands for musicians and the like, Gus finds herself falling in love with Harry, and he with her. She doesn’t care about his leg, or that he may never walk again, as she loves his wit and humour as well as his charm. Although Gus is not the prettiest lady by far, Harry becomes enamoured with her plain beauty and her attentiveness to his condition, as she treats him normally and does not pity his bed-bound condition.
As the two get closer, Harry realises he was planning to marry the wrong sister, and sets his sights on Gus instead. She might doubt her abilities to become a duchess, but she is efficient in running a household and can cope with Harry’s temper far better than Julia would be able to. I really enjoyed watching the progression of their relationship, as they grow closer gradually, without the need for rushing. I also liked that Harry tries to make romantic gestures from his bed, such as organising a romantic meal for her without her loyal staff letting slip any details.
I think this was partly what made Harry such an interesting male lead, as he showed signs of tenderness and desire for a family, besides what was expected of him as his ducal duty. He frequently got frustrated with his condition, as he was dealing with the feeling of emasculation and the inability to carry out simple tasks which were so easy for him before. Throughout it all, he holds on to the hope that one day he will regain the use of his leg, remaining stubborn in his ways and sometimes offending Gus in the process. This was understandable given what he was used to, but I enjoyed seeing him humbled and brought down to Gus’s social level.
Similarly, I found Gus to be a pleasant heroine, as she was devoted to Harry and found herself falling in love with him all at once. She resented Julia for how she treated Harry, abandoning him in his hour of need for the frivolities of the city, but she becomes increasingly grateful for the opportunity to fall in love. She is reluctant to spend time with him at first, wary of what her servants might say in their gossip and infuriated by his arrogant manner. However, when she spends more time with him and sees how much he cares about her, she cannot bring herself to stay away from him, no matter how scandalous it might be.
I thoroughly enjoyed the writing style of this book, as the story flowed nicely and there was a perfect amount and pace of character development. The characters are given the space to grow together and to combat their own problems, with a smattering of sexy scenes thrown in for good measure. There were times when I thought more could have been going on in terms of drama, as it didn’t seem like there many threats to their relationship, or obstacles to be overcome, except for Harry’s injury. Nevertheless, I am thoroughly looking forward to reading the second book in the series, as Harry’s brothers were only mentioned in passing and I cannot wait to meet them. Verdict
An enthralling historical romance, this novel features two main characters that you can’t help but love, rooting for them to get together the whole way through. I enjoyed the fact that the book didn’t end with a wedding, as is so common in historical fiction, as it gave further depth to their relationship and more indication of a lasting future. The writing was strong and engaging, so I cannot wait to meet the second Breconridge brother. Rating: 4 Stars
A Wicked Pursuit by Isabella Bradford (Breconridge Brothers #1) Historical Romance Headline Eternal (25 Feb 2014) Paperback: 337 pages
Set three-hundred years after the Mistborn trilogy, The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson visits the reshaped empire of Scadrial, which has been changed by the dawn of technology, with railways and skyscrapers clouding the landscape.
Amidst the town of Elendel, the magics of Allomancy and Feruchemy remain prevalent, although magic such as Kelsier, Vin and Elend’s is long since consigned to the history books. However, there are those who are twinborn, possessing one element of both Allomancy and Feruchemy, such as our protagonist, Waxillium Ladrian, who can both increase and decrease his weight with Feruchemy, as well as being able to Push on metals when he burns steel. If you haven’t read the previous Mistborn books then this might sound confusing, but this can easily be read as the start of a new trilogy, with a handy glossary and explanations throughout to introduce the concept.
The book opens with Waxillium and his partner, Lessie, in what is known as The Roughs, an area outside of Elendel which reminded me of the Wild West, where outlaws and honour go to die. Wax is a lawkeeper, bringing in those outlaws for a reward, but something goes wrong in this opening scene that changes his outlook. He promptly returns to Elendel to take his rightful place as a lord of house Ladrian, with a family tragedy leaving him alone and destitute, with marriage seeming the only option. He has been paired with Steris Harms, an uptight young girl who humorously presents him with a contract, but also meets her cousin, Marasi, who is seemingly a quiet student.
It is during one of his meetings with Steris that his old friend from The Roughs, Wayne, turns up and causes havoc, purposefully teasing Wax to get a reaction out of him. He is desperate for Wax’s help in discovering the cause of a spate of robberies, perpetrated by those known only as ‘The Vanishers’. Despite his claims to have given up lawkeeping, Wax is nevertheless intrigued, as the thefts are linked to a rare metal, Aluminum, which can kill an Allomancer, as it cannot be Pushed or Pulled on. The thieves have also started taking female hostages, with an apparently unknown link between each captive.
As usual, Sanderson weaves an intense plot in a short space of time, pulling you in completely into his labyrinth of fantastic elements. Even newcomers to the series won’t find it hard to become absorbed in the magic, especially as an intriguing mystery plot is weaved throughout the novel, culminating in a surprising conclusion. There are a number of action-packed gun fights throughout, combining the characters’ magical abilities with physical combat to take the battlefield to another level.
For a protagonist, Wax was certainly different to Elend and Vin from the previous trilogy and yet still possessed some of their soul. He was tortured by his experience in The Roughs, yet his intelligent mind couldn’t help being inspired by the mysterious thefts plaguing Elendel. I thought he was a great protagonist, with just the right level of angst and bitterness to his foes. Sanderson has a great skill for crafting finely tuned main characters, and you can really feel how every blow affects Wax, and how deep a friendship he shares with Wayne. The banter between the two of them was infectious, and I loved how well they fit together as a double act, both in and out of the fighting.
The main female character of the novel, Marasi, was subtly developed throughout the book, and it is obvious that she has feelings for Wax, despite the large age gap between them. She was strong in her own quiet way, refusing to back down from a fight despite her inexperience. I particularly liked that when in a crisis, her panic mode induces her to start quoting facts from her criminology studies! She is definitely one of Sanderson’s more interesting characters, and I look forward to getting to know more about her in the sequel.
As usual, Sanderson is at his fantasy best with the Mistborn series, creating the most intricately crafted characters I’ve ever had the fortune to read. If this trilogy ends up like the previous one, then there are definitely great things ahead for this spinoff series. I can’t recommend this series enough, and if the previous weighty volumes put you off, then the smaller page number of this volume should definitely entice you. Verdict
A brilliant follow-up to the initial trilogy, this new spinoff is easy to read as a standalone without prior knowledge of the universe. Setting the book three-hundred years in the future works well, as it allows the intermingling of Allomancy with technological advances, as well as high-powered gun fights that are reminiscent of the old west. I loved the connections between the characters, and know that this new series definitely has a lot of potential.
Rating: 5 Stars
The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson (Mistborn #4) Fantasy Gollancz (10 Nov 2011) Paperback: 327 pages
For a book that opens with a funeral, Dear Lizzie by Annie Lyons turns out to be about the search for happiness, spurred on by the sisterly bond.
With the knowledge that she had terminal cancer, Lizzie’s sister, Bea, left twelve letters for Lizzie – one for each month of the coming year after her death. Having been separated from the family for fifteen years, Lizzie’s only friend was Bea, and losing her is like losing a part of her heart. She is struggling with the pain of her grief, but decides to follow Bea’s last wishes for her and begins to open the envelopes as instructed.
Detailed within the envelopes are a series of tasks which Bea thought would bring happiness to Lizzie’s lonely life, including the difficult task of reconnecting with their mother and even finding love. However, her sisterly guidance is not as easy to follow as it first appears, and along the way there are some harsh family secrets which threaten to tear Lizzie’s world apart. Regardless of this, Lizzie starts to build a more confident, happy life for herself, and learns that she was never as overshadowed by Bea as she first thought.
Lizzie works in a small independent bookshop in London, and finds herself following Bea’s instructions and making friends with their café neighbours. She is drawn to the owner, Ben, who is going through his own emotional drama after a messy divorce and a character who is easy to like from his first introduction. However, there is the confusion of her feelings for Alex, her ex, with whom there are many unresolved issues and one of the reasons why she moved away in the first place.
I highly enjoyed the plotline of this book, although it did remind me strongly of 13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson. Despite this, the idea of being left envelopes by a loved one seems thoughtful and challenging, as Lizzie likes to feel that a part of Bea is still there with her. It also made it somewhat more difficult to come to terms with her death, especially after certain revelations are made that would necessitate some kind of showdown with her sister. The unseen presence of Bea can be seen to both ruin and improve Lizzie’s life over the course of the book, and I think the full impact of the letters is to be judged by the reader.
As a main character, Lizzie had everything I look for in a romantic protagonist, as she had a traumatic past, a pessimistic outlook to life and the desire to settle for what was easy. Of course, all of this was set to change, and I loved seeing her transition from wallflower to confident, inspiring woman. Having outcast herself from her family, it was the hardest decision to reconnect with them, and I really admired the sense of courage she had to finally face her fears and make her mother see the pain she had caused all those years ago.
What I also enjoyed was Lizzie’s attempts to forge a relationship with Bea’s son, Sam, who was harbouring his own secret about his mum that was leading to feelings of hatred rather than adoration. He is difficult but fragile, and I felt that both he and Lizzie were instrumental in bringing each other out of their shells. For a kid, he also has surprisingly good instincts about people and seems to know who isn’t trustworthy.
I thought that the progression of the letters happened at the right pace, although sometimes it was difficult to believe that a whole month had passed between certain events. I also appreciated certain creative decisions about dates, such as Lizzie choosing the most sentimental moments to open the letters, and choosing the right time to reveal them to other people. I think one of the few things which let the book down for me, however, was the romance storyline. From the beginning, I felt sure that Lizzie and Ben would develop a relationship with little problem, but then Alex was back on the scene and Lizzie immediately seems to jump back into his arms. As a result, the conclusion of the book felt incredibly rushed, as I felt that there wasn’t enough time given to developing a romantic connection, it simply happened and that was that.
Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and struggled to put it down. The chapters were engaging and funny, with characters that seem to bounce straight off the page and into your imagination. Like Lyons’ previous novel, this one makes you re-evaluate what is important in your life, and what you might like to say to those you would leave behind. I have to say that I am growing to like Lyons’ writing style a lot, and I look forward to seeing what she does next. Verdict
A heart-warming tale with a twist, this novel likes to throw you off course at every opportunity and question everything you think you know about Lizzie’s life. There were many shocking revelations which changed the family dynamics forever, as well as a shocking romantic decision that left me more than a little concerned. The ending is fulfilling for Lizzie, as she undergoes a deeply emotional journey throughout the book, but I was hoping for a more thorough description of her romance at the story’s end. Rating: 4 Stars
Dear Lizzie by Annie Lyons Contemporary Romance Carina UK (8 July 2014) Ebook: 320 pages
Over the past year I have fast become a Kristen Ashley fan, having read the entire of her Rock Chick and Dream Man series. I was intrigued by her Fantasyland series and when it went on offer on Amazon, I couldn't resist. Wildest Dreams is the first in this fantasy based series, where the heroine of the book gets whisked off to a parallel universe and finds herself living in the shoes of her parallel twin. This is a world of magic, elves, dragons, and talking cats. Where technology does not exist.
In Wildest Dreams, our heroine Finnie finds out about the existence of this parallel universe, and grieving the loss of her parents, who are still alive in the other universe, she makes a deal to switch with her counterpart. Things naturally do not run quite to plan and she finds out that while her 'twin' might be a Princess, there is also a lot of things she didn't disclose to Finnie before the switch. Including a marriage to a certain intimidating Drakkar.
The book is written with Ashley's characteristic humorous and serious page-turning writing style. Although, I have to say, I think this book took a little bit longer to get into than some of her others, and to get hooked into the story and the characters. There were also a few writing glitches that made me wonder if this was one of Ashley's earlier works as it wasn't as smooth as the writing in her Rock Chick books for example. There were a couple of instances where she would make the story work by saying, oh by the way I told this character this a while ago - and that element would be quite a major plot point, and would have worked a lot better if the scenes had been woven into the plot at the relevant time rather than added in as an after thought. It turns out it isn't one of her earlier works, which means it wasn't the smoothest of writing I have seen from Ashley.
Don't worry, while this did niggle, it didn't ruin the story. I loved the rich fantasy world Ashley created, including Finnie's immense wardrobe! The chemistry between Finnie and our hero, Frey was fabulous, and Finnie was such a great heroine who embraced life and all of its experiences to the fullest. The story was funny and sexy and thoroughly enjoyable.
That being said, I didn't always like Frey's authoritarian manner. Ok, yes I know he's an alpha male etc, etc... But he made a few too many decisions behind Finnie's back for my liking. He did of course get discovered and face the consequences, but I'm afraid he did still occasionally annoy me.
There was a great cast of secondary characters, again something Ashley does well. I loved Apollo and Frey's shipmates, as well as Finine's handmaidens. They made the story richer and I enjoyed watching Finnie's friendship with each of them develop.
My final criticism of the book was I felt that it could have been a smidgen shorter. There were sections that needed snipping. In general my main feedback really is editing, it needed better editing with plot threads and overall length. These were the two failings of the book, although it was still a great book, it could have been better.
Do I think this is Ashley's best book? No. But that certainly doesn't mean it isn't worth a read. I went straight onto read book two immediately (which is loads better), and I'm still a fast Ashley fan. I did enjoy the fantasy setting. It has dragons and elves and the parallel universe added a different twist to a romance story. Rating: 3.5 Stars
Wildest Dreams by Kristen Ashley (Fantasyland #1) Fantasy Romance Self Published (August 2011) Ebook: 536 pages
Establishing a brand new concept is never easy, but that’s part of the joy in reading The Seventh Miss Hatfield by Anna Caltabiano.
I was drawn to this series precisely because of its intriguing premise, as a young girl called Cynthia encounters the mysterious Miss Rebecca Hatfield. Miss Hatfield is their newest neighbour, having just moved in across the street, and draws Cynthia to her house one day under the mistake of a parcel being delivered to the wrong house. Despite knowing she shouldn’t talk to strangers, Cynthia accepts Miss Hatfield’s invitation for cookies and lemonade, continuing to drink up even after seeing Miss Hatfield put a drop of something into her drink.
This single drop of water is from a legendary lake that makes people immortal, with Cynthia now in her adult body and faced with a wealth of confusion. Miss Hatfield goes on to explain about the Hatfield legacy and how Cynthia will become the seventh Miss Rebecca Hatfield, whether she likes it or not. They have the ability to travel backwards through time, but are not permitted to remain for too long in any particular place, as they will soon feel an uncomfortable pull that only intensifies the longer they stay.
As the newest Miss Hatfield, Rebecca is given the task of returning to turn-of-the-century New York to steal a painting. This portrait may reveal some of the secrets to immortality, which must be kept hidden at all costs, placing high stakes on the job at hand. It is up to Rebecca to infiltrate a wealthy household, posing as a cousin, in an attempt to regain this important artefact. However, her job could be in jeopardy when she begins to fall for Henley Beauford, the young master of the house who goes along with her secret identity with no questions asked.
On the surface, this book has an interesting plot with elements I have never come across before, succeeding in mixing fantasy, history and romance. However, I felt that once the main plot points had been explained at the beginning, such as the origin of the Hatfields, the pace became very slow and laboured. As Rebecca becomes closer to the family, the book seems to be more about her relationships with Henley and the staff and very little about the painting at all. In fact, there were times when her goal of stealing the portrait felt forgotten, as if this was only a minor point to consider.
I think it didn’t help that Rebecca was a somewhat difficult character to get to grips with as a protagonist. Her childhood self in the beginning was an outsider, preferring to play alone and yet still wary of her neighbour. She seemed almost idiotic in accepting the drink when she knew something was inside it, and even more accepting when Miss Hatfield explained the legacy and thrust her into the past. I felt that there should have been more outrage from her, or more confusion and rebellion, as she readily accepts being in her adult body and the transition into the past without batting an eyelid.
When she begins to forget her own name and accept her identity as the next Rebecca Hatfield, I found this difficult to comprehend, as she had only just become this new person and surely could not forget everything about her previous life. There were also no regrets about leaving her parents behind, or many fears for her future. The only thing that seems to affect her at all is her relationship with Henley, who was pleasantly amusing and brought jokey warmth to the pages. Their connection was fairly obvious from the start, but was still developed nicely and allowed further exploration of the problems surrounding a Hatfield’s identity.
I also really enjoyed sharing in Rebecca’s experience of the servants and the houses of the era, as she courteous and respectful of all, often implementing more modern attitudes in her treatment of her maids. There were a few conflicts between her and Henley’s father, Charles Beauford, as he has become obsessed with the legend of immortality and it becomes clear that he might know more about the truth than he realises. The historical elements of this book made it become more of a historical romance than a fantasy, as Rebecca’s immortality is forgotten in the face of her relationships with the Beauford household, yet always lurking in the background.
As a completely new concept, I thought this book worked surprisingly well and certainly set the stage for an exciting story. It was only the pace and plot development which let it down for me, as the Hatfield legacy is explained in a rush, whilst the theft of the painting is drawn out to an excruciating length. The ending was somewhat foreseeable, whilst being left open for possible sequels. Now the concept is firmly established, I hope to see more improvement in any further instalments which may follow.
This book starts off well with a refreshing concept that incorporates time travel, immortality and the Miss Hatfield legacy. Unfortunately, it felt like once this concept had been established the plot slowed right down, becoming a seemingly never-ending search for a portrait. The relationships with other characters are developed well, but for me it just felt like there was something missing.
Rating: 3.5 Stars
The Seventh Miss Hatfield by Anna Caltabiano Fantasy Gollancz (31 July 2014) Ebook: 320 pages
The Professional started out as a serial of three e-novella's, but now it has been combined into one paperback. I've not read anything by Cole before, but I do know of her and her paranormal romance series. As I am going through a contemporary, erotic romance binge right now, I decided to start with The Professional. Unfortunately, I didn't really like it that much.
Natalie is a PhD student, living with her friend. Her life is pretty good. The only thing she has niggling at the back of her mind is how long it's taking to find her biological parents. She has hired a private investigator, but she has to work numerous jobs just to afford him. It's been six long years, with no luck.
Out at a club with her girlfriends, Natalie notices a guy at the bar and decides to introduce herself. The guy is Sevastyan, who shoots her down and leaves. A bit embarrassed by her failed seduction, Natalie decides to head home. While she's in the bath, in the middle of fantasising about Sevastyan while self-pleasuring, she sees him outside her bathroom door staring at her. Instead of screaming the place down, or trying to call the police, or, you know, something that a normal person would do, she can't get over how sexy he is. After just a few questions, she learns that he's there because of her biological father.
Sevastyan tells her he's taking her back to Russia to meet her father, who is the head of the Russian Mafia, and gives her five minutes to get ready. When she hesitates, as you would do, he hauls her arse over his shoulder and carries her to the car, taking her to a secret airport where a private jet is waiting. When she decides to make a run for it through a corn field, Sevastyan catches her and instead of fighting for her life, she's turned on and ready to give up her virginity right there and then.
After getting on the plane with Sevastyan, despite knowing that he's a dangerous killer, part of the Russian Mafia and her father's enforcer/assassin, she of course gets into bed with him and does some seriously naughty things. When they arrive in Russia and Natalie meets her father, they talk about his job as the mafia boss, and clocks. There's a couple of gun fights, but that's about as far as it goes with regards to any intrigue. The back story is weak to say the least. In fact, there barely is one.
Let's be clear. For me, this book is just about the sex. We are subjected to page after page after page of sex. No romance, no loving, no depth, just raw lust, sex and kink; with lots of coming, and screaming, and mons...
Mons? I hear you say. I had to look it up. It's the pubic bone. Natalie likes it slapped apparently. And whipped. This is not a sexy word. By the end of the book I didn't really care if Natalie and Sevastyan would make it, as I felt no connection with them at all. There was maybe one chapter near the end that showed some vulnerability and caring from the hero, but other than that it ended as it started. With sex. More specifically, anal. Well, they'd done everything else. Why not end on a high note.
As with all my romances that contain sex, I want more than just that. I want more build up. More romance. More angst. More love. More tenderness. More mutual attraction. Not one half of the couple acting so cold and distant that the sex falls flat, and just becomes a porn scene. I love watching a couple's building attraction as it combusts, placing me right there with them in that moment having all the feels. But, with Natalie and Sevastyan it all happens way too fast, and with two characters that are pretty one-dimensional and rather wooden. I didn't feel as though it was believable to me as I read it. I just kept thinking, would you really do that after just one meeting, in that situation?
I know this is fiction, but I do have to feel that what is happening is believable, otherwise what's the point? The writing has to be good to make me feel totally absorbed in the story, the characters and their relationship. Sadly, in this case, it wasn't.
Rating: 2 Stars
The Professional by Kresley Cole (Game Maker #1) Contemporary Erotic Romance Simon & Schuster (20 May 2014) Paperback: 390 pages
No disclaimer needed for this review - I think I have made my love for hockey pretty clear. I didn’t quite love Across the Line as much as I did it’s predecessor but I still very much enjoyed it.
Becca Chen is fiercely independent - a trait that was probably, ironically, strengthened by the parents who insisted she follow their life plans for her and go into the medical profession. Determined to succeed in her chosen profession - owning and managing her own restaurant - it’s pretty much all she thinks about … that is until she runs into Calder Griffin on a plane journey. They went to the same elementary school where they didn’t exactly get along but their lives have understandably gone in different directions. However, they both know what it’s like to be compared unfavourably to siblings and they soon strike up a conversation that leads to something more.
I liked Becca’s independence and the fact that she was not afraid of working hard to get where she wanted. However, Calder seems to think she’s this laid-back chick just because she ‘allows’ him to go play ice hockey whilst they’re supposed to be on a date and I think that that opinion is proven wrong as we get further into the novel. I can understand Becca’s perfectionism and the need to have full control of her destiny, I just think sometimes she acted a little …rashly, to say the least. Calder is hot (especially if the cover is anything to go by), he knows how to take care of himself in order to be the best he can be at what he does but rather than being driven by his desire to better himself he is driven by the desire to be better than his brother. I suppose the fact that he's driven to prove himself at all is a positive, but it does not seem like a healthy sibling rivalry between the two.
That might make it sound like I didn’t like the characters - and I don’t know that like is the word I would use to describe what I feel about them. In my review for On the Surface I said that I liked the protagonists but didn’t relate to them and I think if anything for Across the Line it would be the opposite. They weren’t awful characters by any stretch of the imagination but they’re also not the type of characters I would necessarily want to be best friends with. Together they work (for the most part)
Again, although ostensibly a fairly straight-forward contemporary romance this novel isn’t all light and fluffy. As well as dealing with the issues of parental disapproval and sibling rivalry and the real and lasting effect they can have, it broaches the subject of homosexuality compassionately, particularly with a view to how it might be perceived with a sport setting, and within the hockey community. Although it’s true that nobody should have a say in someone else’s sex life as long as what they’re doing is legal and consensual it isn’t glossed over in this novel and made to appear all sweetness and light. I honestly think this was one of the major strengths of the book. There's not a massive amount of impetus in this novel to be honest - at least not between the main characters - and this adds something to keep the story going.
There seemed to be more hockey verbiage used in this instalment but that is by no means a bad thing. Hockey isn’t just something that these men happen to do - it’s a huge part of their life and therefore becomes a huge part of their partners lives too. Becca watches games whenever she can, and even joins in once in a while. However, there is (don't tell anybody I said this) such a thing as too much hockey and I think Kate Willoughby gets the balance between showing how important it is and not letting it completely overrun the novel just right.
The sex is ... well it's hot. I'll give you a little snippet;
He pulled out abruptly and pulled her off the desk. Her butt skidded on the wood, but he was strong. Before she knew it, he'd turner her around, bent her over with one hand between her shoulder blades and shoved himself back inside. A primitive thrill raced through her at the unexpected manhandling. His hips slammed against her butt so hard, the drawers in the desk rattled. But God, it felt incredible.
And there are plenty more encounters in the story, although Willoughby refrains admirably from writing too much sex into the story.
All in all, I think this novel suffered a little from second book syndrome. It wasn't wildly different from On the Surface but then again, maybe that's one of the issues. Becca and Calder are another couple from completely different lives who somehow meet in the middle and make a relationship work - just like Tim and Erin. That's not necessarily a bad thing - I just think the series could do with kicking up a notch in the next instalment, which I will definitely be reading.
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Across the Line by Kate Willoughby (In the Zone #2) Contemporary Hockey Romance Carina Press (11 August 2014) Ebook: 287 pages