Ladies and Gentlemen – welcome back to Club Destiny. It’s been a while since we visited this gorgeous kinky corner of Texas and it’s so good to be bac...more
Ladies and Gentlemen – welcome back to Club Destiny. It’s been a while since we visited this gorgeous kinky corner of Texas and it’s so good to be back. Now, oh boy, do we have one sexy treat for you.
Let introduce to you the stars of the show. In the red corner we have Mr Xander Boone, real estate mogul, respected dom and brick shithouse of a man aaaaaaaaaand in the blue corner we have Mistress Merecedes Bryant, raven haired beauty, business woman and an established and experienced Domme. Yes. it’s Dom vs Domme and let me warn you, the chemistry here is going to get so explosive, it’s ready to go off like an atom bomb!
We begin with Xander having convinced Mercedes to sub for him for a demo of dominance and submission for Samantha and Logan who are looking for that certain something extra to add even more sizzle to their sex life. Having lost their third twice now, they’re looking to try something new and Xander thinks Logan’s natural dominance is what they should be exploiting and he’s deciding to give them a little demonstration into flogging a sub and demanding her submission only he’s chosen a sought after and well respected Domme, Mercedes, to sub for him for the night. Of course, the man has ulterior motives – he is genuinely seeking Mercedes’ submission and he knows that it won’t be willingly given up and will be hard fought.
Mercedes is a wonderfully strong heroine and more than a match for Xander. She perceives herself to be naturally dominant and likes and needs to stay in control over every aspect of her life, most especially her sex-life. BUT, she has reasons to need to stay in control and Xander sees something else in her and perceives her to be a natural submissive that she is hiding deep inside. Of course, Mercedes strongly disagrees and agrees to a five day trial period to submit to him with the agreement that he will allow her to top him twice. In public.
Of course what start out as a double dare to see who could top who is going to turn into something far deeper and much more emotional as Mercedes will find herself ever more confused by her role and Xander will find his need for her submission increasing exponentially as he is determined to prove to her that the connection they now share is real and lasting. It was never going to be a battle easily won and watch out for some seriously sexy scenes between these two which are seriously fucking hot!
Xander Boone – what a delicious tatted, pierced giant of a man. Ever since we first met him, I’ve been dying for his story. He’s built like a brick shithouse and is a commanding and experienced dom. Please excuse me while I melt into a submissive puddle at his feet. He’s been going through submissives pretty fast over the years and has never really formed an emotional connection to any of them but he’s seen something in Mercedes during their friendship of nearly a decade and he’s decided now’s the time and takes advantage of the situation that arises with Logan and Samantha to force her hand.
I so enjoyed this – it’s very much, as the title implies, about perception. Mostly about how Mercedes sees herself, her role in BDSM and how others, most especially, Xander see her. Xander is definitely seeing something in Mercedes that no one else has seen before and he knows he wants that! It’s absolutely mouth-wateringly delicious to watch their growing feelings as the five days of their agreement progress. Mercedes’ inner turmoil and confusion comes across loud and clear and Xander is infinitely patient with her and plays a crafty and skilful game with her.
There were some incredible scenes including the opening of Alluring Indulgence which was only briefly touched on and I feel sure is about to take centre stage in a Nicole Edwards novel in the immediate future. I can’t wait to see that scene retold! We get to catch up with all the guys and gals of Club Destiny and meet a few new interesting characters who definitely need to appear in stories of their own including very interesting new Brit.
So, it’s another sexy romp from Nicole Edwards who once again deftly combines super-charged white-hot sex scenes with an incredible and in-depth emotional love story. She’s one of my go-to authors for shit-hot erotic romance and she never disappoints.
I’m going to confess something shocking to you all to start off this review and you’re going to think I’ve been hiding under a rock the last couple of...more
I’m going to confess something shocking to you all to start off this review and you’re going to think I’ve been hiding under a rock the last couple of years but I have never ever read a Colleen Hoover novel. I can hear your gasps of shock from here and, believe me, I’m right there with you. My failure to read a book by, arguably, the biggest author in the new adult genre really felt like a gaping chasm in my reading experience so I was determined to put this right with her next release and I duly bought Maybe Someday on release day and I was off.
Straight away I knew I was in the hands of an accomplished author - the writing is really tight and we’re plunged immediately into a scene of high drama and the story is allowed to gradually spread out from this moment in time. It’s masterfully told. The book begins with Sydney standing sobbing in the rain, her life in ruins not knowing what to do next. It’s a wonderful scene and my first ever from Colleen Hoover – it’s instantly so compelling that I found myself immediately sucked into the story, dying to know what had happened.
Now, I’m a strong believer that you really shouldn’t know much more than the blurb before you embark on a book – I firmly believe that to get full value from a book, you really need to experience it just as the author intends so each new reveal, each and every shock can have the full impact on you and, with that in mind, I can only be vague about the synopsis because there is so much you shouldn’t know but bear with me because it’s so worth the journey into the unknown.
So, as the blurb says, Sydney discovers that her roommate and best friend, Tori, has been doing the old horizontal shuffle with her boyfriend and this is how we begin. We jump back two weeks to fill in the gaps and catch Sydney sitting on her balcony listening to the guy who lives opposite, Ridge,playing his guitar on his balcony while she makes up lyrics to his songs. At this point, Sydney and Ridge really gave me a Rear Window, Grace Kelly and James Stewart kind of vibe and the scene painted itself vividly on the blank canvas of my imagination. Ridge and Sydney slowly get to know one another as she shares her lyrics with him and it is Ridge who invites Sydney up to his apartment that day he sees her sobbing in the rain as her world comes cashing down and it is these two who are at the centre of this romance but there are very good reasons why they should never be together and that it is the heart of the novel.
Their love, their very painful love, can never be – everything about their growing feelings for one another is so very wrong and yet feels more right to them than anything else has ever felt before. It’s such an emotional and heartfelt story. There’s an unrelenting chemistry between Sydney and Ridge which I found so addictive – they resist so hard but they find themselves falling in love despite their better judgement and it’s just so painful. Their growing feelings for one another were so palpable and yet tinged with an awful guilt and an ever increasing sense of despair.
There’s so much that we don’t know about these central characters and, having studiously avoided all reviews and spoilers, I knew nothing and every new bit of information genuinely came as a surprise to me and I really think every reader should experience this book in this way. There are things we don’t know about Ridge at first and each discovery should come unexpectedly out of the blue – just as it did for me.
Ridge is one of life’s good guys – he’s desperately trying to do the right thing by everyone, trying to not hurt anyone but his heart is slowly being torn in two and I felt his emotional turmoil so keenly. He’s constantly trying to do the right thing but his heart is betraying him as he finds himself falling in love with Sydney however hard he tries to resist and those pent-up, denied feelings are fighting hard to be released and it’s obvious that only heartache lies ahead.
I completely lost myself in Ridge and Sydney’s story – it’s full of intense angst, deep emotions, richly drawn characters and a forbidden love. It took me a few days to read this which is fairly unusual for me and those days I spent with those book were consumed by these two star-crossed lovers. There’s just so much heartache, regret and undeniable love packed into these pages. The characters are given such incredible depth that they came vividly to life as I read the book and I grew to love them all, despite their obvious faults and I cared deeply for them all and really didn’t want anyone to end up getting hurt although clearly this was inevitable.
Maybe Someday is a soul-searching, heartfelt and very intense romance from Colleen Hoover that packs a weighty emotional punch - it deftly combines a very sensual relationship of songwriter and lyricist working together with a forbidden love story which really will have your heart melting for everyone involved. I often felt like Colleen Hoover had reached out and ripped my heart from my chest, tore it in two and threw it on the floor in front of me – to say I was emotionally invested in all of these characters is a big understatement.
I do wish there had been an epilogue to this story – there was one character that I felt desperately needed some closure and I don’t know if this was left with the intention of writing another novel featuring this person but, even now, I’m worrying about them. I can’t bear to think of them out there alone and heartbroken and that’s how things were left and I wanted, no needed, to see this character find a little happiness.
I don’t know how Maybe Someday compares to Colleen Hoover’s earlier novels and I don’t know how her legions of fans feel about this one but I do know how I feel. I do know that I felt every heartbeat, every single tear and every soul-searching, emotional moment - I laughed with the characters and I also cried with them. I do know that I’ve read a beautiful, deeply romantic love story and I do know that I’ve been in the presence of greatness.
Well, it’s safe to say that this book is a complete RIOT! It’s totally not what I was expecting. When I first saw that cover and read the blurb, I was...more
Well, it’s safe to say that this book is a complete RIOT! It’s totally not what I was expecting. When I first saw that cover and read the blurb, I was expecting a romance in a similar style to Katy Evans’ Real but this is very different from that. In fact, when I first realised that the two main protagonists are actually in High School, I was initially a little put off, but there’s something about this book that really kind of captivated me and I was pretty much sucked in.
Let me start off by saying that this book is VERY Irish - you can hear that Irish Brogue coming through loud and clear with the attitude, the slang and the swearing. No one can swear quite like the Irish – I feckin’ love it! I think it’s incredibly fitting that the book releases on Paddy’s Day – perfect timing.
Bronagh is our heroine, who has been raised for nine years by her elder sister due the tragic loss of her parents. This has hit Bronagh hard and she’s vowed never to allow anyone close enough to her for her to ever feel that pain of loss ever again. She’s closed off from everyone apart from Bronagh and hides from reality behind a pair of ear buds staying in her own little world. She’s incredibly spiky and practically snarls at anyone who gets close – she’s funny but she’s also very sharp with a dry,acerbic wit. Most of all, Bronagh is fierce, scarily so – she has a short fuse and is never shy of standing up for herself and what she thinks is right.
The American Slater Brothers storm into town like a tornado and Dominic and Damien, totally gorgeous twins, are placed in Bronagh’s class and Dominic knows straight away that he wants her but she’s gong to make it as difficult for him as she possibly can, fighting off his charms while other girls are literally falling at his feet but he is determined to pursue her.
Dominic is cocky, arrogant, possessive, protective, rude, quick to anger but he’s also incredibly charming and lovable, as are all the Slater boys and, despite some of his absolute stupidity in this book, he’s hard not to like. He torments Bronagh at school for ignoring his advances and makes her life hell. I had to laugh when he admired her ‘phat ass’ and she thought he had said ‘fat arse’ and named him Fuckface – they really did become Fatarse and Fuckface in my head after that one and I found myself grinning like a goof at some of their antics and arguments.
This is all kinds of crazy as the story thunders along at a furious pace with everyone constantly falling out, snarling and hissing at one another like feral cats and constantly falling into physical fights. I think I lost count of the amount of times poor old Dominic got clocked around the head. Luckily, the guy has a hard head as he’s an underground fighter going by the names of Nico or Rampage, something that Bronagh really doesn’t like.
Of course, there’s a reason why the Slater Brothers have come to Ireland and this will come roaring back to put them all in danger and the last part of the novel is a crazy rush of drama and action and it really does move us well beyond the High School style romance and into something significantly more adult.
I have to say Bronagh’s High School experience is pretty brutal. She gets beaten up several times and is always finding herself embroiled in fights and Dominic is no better – both of them, and several others, spend most of this novel wandering around with cuts and bruises.
Deep at the heart of the novel, despite the batshit crazy pace, is a story of deep and abiding loyalty between family and friends and very much a strong theme of love – brotherly, sisterly, romantic and very sexual love. It’s thoroughly enjoyable and charming with some really great character development. It’s so sweet to see Bronagh’s spiky resolve slowly being taken down by Dominic and her frozen heart slowly melting for him. I adored the way that he loved her and cherished her, despite their screaming arguments and I couldn’t help but find myself rooting for them.
"I'm yours?" I mumbled, still in awe that this beautiful person wanted me when he could have any girl he wanted.
Dominic smiled at me and kissed the tip of my nose then winked as he said, "You've always been mine, pretty girl. You just didn't know it."
This book is just all kinds of crazy but, strangely, it works – OK, it’s a debut and it’s a little rough around the edges with a few typos but it’s very original and it is absolutely hilarious and I really did enjoy it and I’ll definitely be continuing with the series. Can’t wait for some more Slater Boys action with Alec, the manwhore, up next. I’m dying for Damien’s story which I think will be the most emotional but it appears the author is saving the best till last.
We’re back with Tristan and Danika now estranged after the calamitous events at the end of Rock Bottom. Tristan really has brought about the ruin of h...more
We’re back with Tristan and Danika now estranged after the calamitous events at the end of Rock Bottom. Tristan really has brought about the ruin of his relationship with Danika as he slowly began to lose the battle against his inner demons until he did actually hit Rock Bottom and seeing Danika battered in a hospital bed has been a big wake up moment for him. Determined to get himself clean, he sobers up and tries very hard to stay sober for Danika but she’s had enough and has walked away leaving him grieving the loss of the only woman he has ever truly loved.
He was sobbing now. Brokenly. I’d never seen a grown man cry like that, great heaving sobs, as though the world were ending, and there was no earthly reason to hold back the despair.
Oh, my goodness – I knew this was going to be an emotional read but nothing could have prepared me for Tristan’s tears. I guess I knew they were coming but he totally slayed me. I have loved Tristan throughout this whole series - he’s incredibly alpha and big, bad and dangerous to know but, despite all his bravado and his badass macho image, there’s actually a vulnerable and emotional soul beneath the tough exterior and there were times when my heart really hurt for him. He’s definitely made some seriously bad decisions in the past but he’s cleaned up his act now and his love for Danika never once diminishes. She is everything to him and he’s never going to stop loving her.
Very slowly, RK Lilley fills in those long, lonely and painful years after Danika’s accident until we’re right up to date, and this is where we catch up with the Up In The Air trilogy and the two of them are thrown together at James and Bianca’s wedding. Danika is still angry, still bitter and is really quite hurtful to Tristan, unable to fully forgive him for the past and, again, my heart broke for Tristan.
I felt so bad for Danika – not only is she living with the consequences of her accident, she’s also keeping them secret when she really does need to unburden herself by confiding in someone. She’s constantly trying to find a little bit of happiness in her life but nothing comes close to the highs she felt with Tristan and, of course, the desperate lows.
This was a wonderful second chance love story and so very emotional. I just adored how much Tristan still loved Danika, after all these years and never once gave up hope. The incredibly chemistry they shared still burns as brightly now as it did all those years ago and, despite all the heartache, they are so obviously soul mates. They have so much shared history which includes all the good times as well as the bad and they know how good they can be together – now it’s just a case of reconciling their differences, putting the past behind them and moving forward together despite all the obstacles they have to face in this one.
This has been a wonderful trilogy as RK Lilley shows once more why she’s one of the top authors in the erotic romance genre. She’s produced two really excellent trilogies now and I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next.
Wow! Get the Kleenex at the ready and prepare for another emotional ride from Trudy Stiles! She’s going to make you cry, ugly cry and she’ll also make...more
Wow! Get the Kleenex at the ready and prepare for another emotional ride from Trudy Stiles! She’s going to make you cry, ugly cry and she’ll also make you smile – there’s so many mixed emotions in this book and the best way I can sum it up is to say that it’s bittersweet. Although there’s a lot of happiness here, we’ll also be left with a big ‘what if’ and and longing for what’s been lost and can never be replaced.
I have to confess to having mixed feelings about Tabitha after I read Dear Emily. While on one hand, I sympathised deeply with her incredible losses and the terrible abuse that she suffered and on the other, I felt that she played fast and loose with the emotions of the men in her life and, ultimately, crushed two good men. She left both Alex and Seth heartbroken in her wake and I began this book with no small amount of anger towards her and I was very intrigued to see how Trudy Stiles would handle this very challenging heroine.
Her words tear into me like that fucking rake did so long ago. I feel gutted. My heart drops in my chest when the words she just spoke sink into me.
There isn’t an us anymore.
We join Tabitha a couple of years after the events of Dear Emily – Tabitha has grown emotionally and is now a much stronger person. She’s single again having left Seth long behind and haven given her heart irrevocably to Alex who she hasn’t seen in years but he is about to come back into her life and he’s not the only surprise in store for her as her past comes roaring back to completely change everything.
Both Tabitha and Alex come from harrowing backgrounds. Tabitha was orphaned at birth, adopted by a wonderful woman who died tragically and suddenly, abandoned to the foster system and then almost enslaved by an evil, abusive man. She’s escaped her past but she’s not without emotional scars and lives with constant nightmares. She’s lost and given up so much in her life for the good of others – her life has been about sacrifice and, only now, is she beginning to live her life for herself and on her own terms. She’s grown so much since we first met her and she’s now an independent woman attempting to leave her tragic past behind.
Alex also suffered years of abuse after the loss of his beloved mother but, thankfully, was able to grow up in the heart of his best friend Dax’s loving family. He gave his heart to Tabitha years ago only to catch her kissing Seth, betraying him and he ran, broken hearted, without ever looking back. If only he had – if only he had given Tabitha the chance to explain, things would have been so different. He’s lost more than he can ever begin to realise and now, the truth about Emily is about to come out and watch out for some incredibly emotional scenes as Alex comes to terms with all that he has lost.
This is such an emotional story – the raw pain BLEEDS out of this novel and Alex, especially, had me welling up. I felt so badly for him, much more than I ever did for Tabitha despite her awful past. There’s just something about Alex – the way he wears his emotions on his heart, the tender and patient way he handled a skittish and battle-scarred Tabitha as they were getting to know one another, the sweet things that he does for her that really melted my heart. He’s beautiful inside and out and I couldn't stand to see him hurting and Trudy Stiles really does put him through the mill in this book. Be prepared to hurt and to hurt bad for Alex.
Tabitha has so much to deal with in this novel – not only has Alex walked back into her life, a big part of her past, a part she thought was lost to her has suddenly returns and Tabitha is left lost and floundering, desperate to do the right thing but unsure if she has the strength to do it. Alex was such a rock for her even though he was hurting – he was there for her every step of the way and I just adored him.
This is beautifully paced. It’s told from Tabitha and Alex’s alternating POV’s and differing timelines and I think Trudy Stiles does a good job of getting inside their heads at different stages of their life. Their inner voice does a good job of reflecting the age their character is at the time – it’s very well told. It builds to an incredible emotional crescendo and the last 25% or so had me turning the pages at a rate of knots, completely unable to put this down as I found myself so invested, desperate for this all to end well knowing that the ending could only be bittersweet at best – there’s still the loss of Alex, Tabitha and Emily as the family that can never be. We do, however, get to catch up with Emily, Carly and Kyle and it’s great to see them so happy and moving on as a family and and I really enjoyed their scenes.
So it’s another intensely emotional story from Trudy Stiles and we have Seth’s story to look forward to later this year.
Monster is a new standalone novel from Francette Phal. It’s not dark erotica which I think I thought it would be, it’s much more of a sexy contemporar...more
Monster is a new standalone novel from Francette Phal. It’s not dark erotica which I think I thought it would be, it’s much more of a sexy contemporary romance featuring Dominic and Eden
We begin, as the blurb describes, with Eden caught in a loveless marriage with the ruthless and imperious Dominic. She grew up in poverty, made money as a stripper to pay her way through college and got romantically involved with Dominic’s younger half-brother and, as they are wealthy, Dominic stepped in to prevent them from marrying but he wants her for himself so he offers her a lucrative contract to pay off her debts – arm-candy by day, whore in the bedroom. She agrees on the condition that he marry her and that’s where we begin, several years into their marriage.
The blurb states accidental gold-digger but I think it was more like opportunistic gold-digger. In the opening chapters, neither Dominic and Eden do much to endear themselves to the reader. Dominic is cold, callous and manipulative – he frequently debases and degrades her in front of his friends. It’s very hard to see any redeeming features in this cold-hearted bastard at all. I was also distinctly lacking in sympathy for Eden – she’d made her avaricious bed and, however sadistic Dominic was, I kind of felt like she ought to just lie in it and quit moaning. She agreed to this for money and there’s a part of me that felt that she really deserved what she was getting
BUT, Eden makes a discovery that sends her running, searching for a better and more meaningful life but Dominic isn’t about to let her go that easily and searches for her with the weight of his wealth and influence at his disposal and it’s not long before he finds her and coerces her into another contract.
I did really enjoy this – the novel took a whole different direction to the one that I’d anticipated after reading the blurb and this is very much a story of emotional growth and of love and forgiveness. The first few chapters depict Dominic as a cold, sadistic and ruthless control freak with very little endearing features, if any at all. It’s not until much later in the novel that we learn about his heart-breaking past and the incidents that caused this man to hate women and build an impenetrable emotional fortress around himself. It’s going to take something very special to thaw out that cold, black heart and Eden, unwittingly, has provided him with just what it takes to unlock his emotions and finally allow this man to love.
Eden, for her part, is very misguided. I really can’t understand what possessed her to sign that contract in the first place and she really did find herself living in hell during her marriage to Dominic but there is a really sweet girl hidden beneath the woman Dominic has forced her to be and she really did try to change her life for the better for the noblest of reasons. I really admired her attempts to make something of her life and how hard she tried to go it alone until, of course, Dominic manages to once more knock her off course.
This is a great second chance love story that simmers with an unrelenting chemistry between the two main protagonists – it’s very sexy, ultimately very romantic and a fantastic story of emotional growth. It’s very compelling and it’s quite the emotional roller-coaster that takes the reader from fairly awful scenes of degradation right through to real happiness with plenty of angst along the way.
This is my first book by Francette Phal – it definitely won’t be my last.