He uttered a curse that startled her with its foulness, and gripped her head between his hands, forcing her to stare at him. His voice****SPOILER****
He uttered a curse that startled her with its foulness, and gripped her head between his hands, forcing her to stare at him. His voice was savage. "For twelve years I have been in constant torment, wanting you in my arms and believing it would never be possible. I want you for a thousand reasons other than your legs, and...no, damn it, I want you for no reason at all, other than the fact that you're you. I want to shove myself deep inside you and stay for hours..days...weeks. I want morning and noon and nightfall with you. I want your tears, your smiles, your kisses...the smell of your hair, the taste of your skin, the touch of your breath on my face. I want to see you in the final hour of my life...to lie in your arms as I take my last breath"...
Once in a while, I am reminded of why I love reading romance novels...and why Lisa Kleypas is, without a doubt, Queen of Romancelandia!...more
What can I say? It is my number 1, all-time favorite romance novel with one of the most touching scenes ever written (2nd only to THE most touching scWhat can I say? It is my number 1, all-time favorite romance novel with one of the most touching scenes ever written (2nd only to THE most touching scene ever from Almost Heaven)....more
Nobody does taboo romance like Karen Robards, and on this "re-read" I listened to the audiobook. Excellent story of a 17-yr-old girl/woman who is at fNobody does taboo romance like Karen Robards, and on this "re-read" I listened to the audiobook. Excellent story of a 17-yr-old girl/woman who is at first infatuated with and then becomes the lover of her guardian...her 35-yr-old, married guardian.
One of my top five all-time favorite historical romances! ...more
I wrote the review below 2 years ago after reading the paperback. Today I finished the audio book and came away with a much clearer picture of the stoI wrote the review below 2 years ago after reading the paperback. Today I finished the audio book and came away with a much clearer picture of the story and a better understanding of what motivated the characters to behave the way they did. The narrator, Natalie Ross (nar. KMM's Dreamfever series) did an outstanding job of bringing the story to life. My revised rating for SOTW is a solid 5+ stars and probably my new number 1 favorite audiobook.
If ever there was a heroine confronted with a mind-blowing dilemma, it would have to be Macy from Summer of Two Wishes by Julia London. Macy was one of the lucky ones that married the love of her life...and every day she and Finn were together was like living the eternal "happy-ever- after". However, the couple's cocoon of bliss is destroyed when Finn enlists in the army, goes to war in Iraq and is officially pronounced dead several months later - the victim of a suicide bomber. For the next two years Macy simply "exists"...fueled only by memories of the extraordinary love she had shared with her husband. Time moves on, however, and eventually so does Macy. She meets and marries Wyatt...a wonderful man who helps her let go of the past and someone with whom she, once again, finds love and happiness.
Does the curtain drop here? Oh, hell no...this is where the book begins! We know what "assume" does to you and me so I imagine it works on a larger scale when the army assumes a soldier is dead from finding his mutilated dog tags and 3 years later he turns up alive... and as well as can be expected (considering he spent those years in captivity). No matter...the army is redeemed because Finn is on his way home! And yes, Macy has a HUGE problem!
The first half of this book was excellent but heart-wrenching. As Macy goes off alone to do some soul-searching for answers, we watch Finn struggle to survive in the normal world again. This poor guy lived in hell for 3 years, and returned home only to find everything that was once his (the memories of which had given him the will to live) had been taken away from him. Finn deals with the loss of his wife, PTSD, alcohol dependency and an overbearing mother (named Karen, no less) while publicly being touted a national hero. At the same time, Wyatt feels his world getting ready to crumble...the idealistic life and love he shares with Macy, the future they are building together and the child they are trying to have, is suddenly an uncertainty. Although my heart was with Finn, Wyatt was a great guy in his own right and did not deserve this cruel hand dealt by fate.
Just as I was beginning to acknowledge the fact that this book was well on it's way to becoming my all-time favorite (unseating another novel by London), it hit the wall (but just enough to knock it's halo crooked). Suddenly we have a "bad" guy, another big wrench thrown in the works and Macy going from sympathetic to annoying. She made her decision but never convinced me she was truly happy with it. And she fluctuated between the two men to the point of madness. In Macy's defense, however, I can't imagine what I would have done in the same situation...probably a lot worse. Another concern I had with the book is that we never get a good fleshing out of Macy's character. Who was this woman that captivated the hearts of 2 men so completely? Normally I don't care for flashbacks, but this book would have benefited from using them. I wanted to "feel" the love that Finn and Wyatt felt for Macy...a little evidence of why they both loved her to distraction.
I wanted to rate this book 4.5* but tipped it up because I'm nice like that. (uh-huh) Despite the misgivings I had (they aren't too major), this book is definitely worth reading...if for no other reason than to fall in love with Finn. You feel so bad for the guy you just want to kiss him and make it all better (of course it does not hurt that he is described as a total hotty)! London became an auto-buy for me several books back, but this is the first contemporary I've read by her. I was impressed enough to pull her back list up and GRRRrrrr...she's got at least 6 other contemps I feel I must read. *sigh* My tbr pile is going to be as big as Dina's pretty soon. ;)
Being sucked into that literary vortex of all things dramatic, melancholy and depressing for quite some time now, I needed to put aside the Virgin RivBeing sucked into that literary vortex of all things dramatic, melancholy and depressing for quite some time now, I needed to put aside the Virgin Riverites and Regency rakes & rogues and read something uplifting. She picks! She scores! lol I LOVED this book! The hero is Luc Martineau, a Canadian hottie who plays professional hockey for the Seattle Chinooks. He is drop-dead gorgeous with a lean, athletic body and a killer tattoo that begins at the base of his hoohaa and peeks out from the top of his boxers. Yum! He's into blondes, boobs and beer, and is having a stellar season "tending the net". The heroine is Jane Alcott, a five-foot nothing, flat-chested brunette who writes a "single girl in the city" column for the Seattle Times & has just been given the temporary assignment of covering the Chinooks for a season. She's into bottled water, wearing black and dealing with the fact she sucks in serious relationships. She's also into the column she writes in secret for a men's mag about a barmaid named "Honey Pie", a trash-talking, gum-popping nymphomaniac who screws men into comas (but I won't go into that).
Obviously, Luc & Jane are polar opposites and neither can imagine ever hooking up with the other. However...Luc does wonder what Jane would look like minus the hideous clothes, and Jane does admit she fantasizes about following the path of that tattoo.... Fortunately for us, Rachel Gibson doesn't wait long to put her protagonists completely "in the know" about each other...bringing them both (literally) to their knees (though not at the same time, of course):)
The book has some great laugh-out-loud moments as Jane takes some hard knocks in her quest to become "one of the boys" and prove that women do indeed have the right to be in a locker room (ahem...as long as you don't look down). Luc, on the other hand, fights a constant battle with himself about what he thinks he wants as opposed to what he knows he wants. A few misunderstandings are easy enough for the couple to deal with as they seem to be on their way to a HEA...until Jane pulls a bonehead "chick" move that turns everything upside down!
This is the cutest book! Anyone looking for a light, humorous read (possibly one sitting) with a hot hero who says "aboot" and a tiny heroine with a big attitute...should read this book. There are a few touching scenes that help keep the story grounded, but the couple's sexual chemistry made evident during the bedroom scenes blows it right back through the roof.
His lips were warm and welcoming and she slid into the kiss with the abandonment of a true nympho. Because sometimes in life, Ken didn't always choose Barbie. For that, he had to be rewarded.
Rachel Gibson rocks! Thank you, K., for pointing me in her direction....more
We all read book after book after book. Some make us laugh out loud, others have us shedding more than our fair share of tears while still others haveWe all read book after book after book. Some make us laugh out loud, others have us shedding more than our fair share of tears while still others have us gripping the book with white-knuckled intensity as the suspense builds page by page. But how often do you come across a book that engages all of these emotions and manages to seize your heart as well? Such was the case for me with Lady Isabella's Scandalous Marriage by Jennifer Ashley.
On the night of her coming-out ball, Isabella met and fell in love with Mac Mackenzie, a peer with few morals and no social acceptance. On a dare from his fellow debauched buddies, Mac crashed the ball and whirled Isabella onto the dance floor. But as fate would have it, it was Mac who was swept off his feet...he and Isabella were married by morning. Despite being disowned by her family, Isabella never regretted her hasty decision because her feelings of love for her husband only strengthened with time. Surprisingly (for a romance novel), Mac's feelings were mutual. But Mac was an established artist; and, in the generalization of the term, was a free spirit who would drop out of sight for weeks at a time to assuage his need to "create". Isabella understood and accepted Mac's "flights of fancy" until his drinking and debauchery spun terribly out of control. After 3 years of marriage, Isabella filed for a legal separation; and, for the next 3 years, the two maintained separate houses and lives.
One day, Isabella discovers that someone is forging Mac's paintings and she sets off for his house to warn him of the impostor. This is where the story begins...
Our first encounter with Mac finds him in his studio, shirtless - wearing only a kilt, boots and bandana around his head - and totally engrossed in the act of painting a nude model. If you haven't read the first book in this series, The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie, then you would probably be like me and have absolutely no idea what this guy is all about. Not exactly standard fare for a historical romance hero. But the story unfolds rather quickly - the past interwoven with the present so you aren't subjected to long flashbacks - and is relayed primarily from Mac's POV, so you come to know him soon and love him completely.
Quite simply, Mac and Isabella's story could be summed up by the old adage "you can't live with him and you can't live without him." However, Mac was determined to prove to Isabella that she could live with him...thus providing the premise for this story. It was such an unusual story line that no doubt it will never be copied...a hero and heroine who are madly in love AND married from the beginning of the book to the end WITHOUT a single sexual dalliance committed outside of their marriage - even during the 3 years of estrangement! Who would think such a tedious plot could make for such an emotional, "tug at your heart-strings" story? Fortunately for us, Jennifer Ashley did...and she pulled it off masterfully!
If you are reading this review, then chances are good you enjoy reading romance novels and most likely are somewhat of a romantic at heart. With that said, you will be denying yourself the greatest of pleasures and missing out on a beautiful love story between two extraordinary characters if you choose to forgo reading Lady Isabella's Scandalous Marriage. If I could rate it 10 stars I would....more
I think if I could sum up this book with one word it would be...brilliant!...or beautiful!...or (absolutely freaking) amazing!
The road to happiness foI think if I could sum up this book with one word it would be...brilliant!...or beautiful!...or (absolutely freaking) amazing!
The road to happiness for Marc Hunter and Sophie Alton is probably the longest, most difficult and improbable road that a hero & heroine (truly deserving titles) have had to travel; but from the Prologue to the Epilogue, you will cheer this couple on for every hard-fought mile they gain.
I have only read a handful of novels termed "romantic suspense" but I have no doubt Unlawful Contact sets the bar for the genre. Five stars doesn't come close to doing this book justice, as Pamela Clare has truly outdone herself here.
So if you are looking for a brilliantly written, beautiful love story woven throughout 375 pages of amazing non-stop action (that will keep you up reading way past your bedtime), then Unlawful Contact is a must-read for you. (Oh...and be sure to have the trusty box of Kleenex on hand...no way, no how will you make it through dry-eyed.)
When we were little girls, we all knew the story of Cinderella...the rags to riches to rags plight of an impoverished beauty who is granted one unforgWhen we were little girls, we all knew the story of Cinderella...the rags to riches to rags plight of an impoverished beauty who is granted one unforgettable night at a glorious ball with a handsome prince. That might have been a long time ago but none of us has forgotten the love story of Cinderella and her Prince Charming...and the most romantic "happily ever after" in fairy-tale land. A Kiss at Midnight is Eloisa James' gift to those little girls - all grown up now but still believing in the magic of true love, handsome heroes and the perfect, fairy-tale ending.
This story doesn't have any paranormal tweaks...no rats becoming footmen or pumpkins transformed into carriages. It does, however, have a most charming prince who studies archeology and a palace full of odd animals and even stranger people who the prince has taken under his wing. Alas! What an enormous expense it is to keep them all and so Prince Gabriel is resigned to accepting his arranged betrothal to a wealthy Russian princess.
Kate Daltry has been living the life of a cast-aside relation for many years. Once her father died, Kate's stepmother completely took over their London estate and set about making Kate's stepsister the belle of the ton. The stepsister, Victoria, manages to snag a peer but due to unfortunate circumstances, cannot accompany said peer to visit his uncle, the prince, to receive a royal blessing on the union. Kate is forced to go in Victoria's place.
From their first encounter, sparks fly between Kate and Gabriel - and a battle of wits ensues. They are, however, most intrigued by each other; and, managing to spend a great deal of quality time together, are helpless to falling in love. Soon the battle of wits that brought them together transforms, over the course of the story, into a conscientious battle between right and wrong...between letting love rule and loving enough to let go. Add to this dilemma a princess who is not only beautiful but has a sweet countenance as well...also enamored with the prince and by all means has the rights to him...and you've got a twist on the story that no longer resembles the fairy tale. There are many laugh-out-loud moments and a few poignant, tearful scenes made that much worse because there really are no wicked stepmothers to blame for what can never be between Kate and Gabriel. Evil thy name is fate...indestructible and eternal.
Do not lose sight of your girlhood fantasy, however, as James works a little magic of her own to make things right. And don't be caught up with any historical inadequacies you find (as James points out at the end of the book). Simply take it as it's been presented to you...a grownup version of Cinderella written precisely for the incurable romantic that you undoubtedly are. Perhaps, when you are finished reading the book, you will close your eyes and dream...of beautiful ball gowns, sinfully handsome princes, and the glass slipper you left behind.