I know this sounds awful but I wish there'd been more drama between the heroine and her parents -- such a big deal was made over their horrible treatm...moreI know this sounds awful but I wish there'd been more drama between the heroine and her parents -- such a big deal was made over their horrible treatment of her when she was a child (neglect, not abuse), and yet, it was almost brushed aside and just lightly explained away.
Expected Release Date: June 26, 2012 Publisher: HarperCollins Imprint: Avo...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: June 26, 2012 Publisher: HarperCollins Imprint: Avon Author’s Website: http://www.annarandol.com My Source for This Book: Edelweiss Part of a Series: Yes Series Best Read In Order: N/A Steam Level: Steamy
While I do wish that this novella had been a little longer, I couldn’t really hold that against it too much, because I think I only wanted it to be longer because I was enjoying the writing and the characters so much.
I’ve long been a sucker for abused heroines, and Sophia was delightful. Sympathetic without being pitiful, and possessing quite a bit of inner strength without being unrealistic, I loved watching her regain her sense of identity after Richard’s death.
Camden, too, was an unexpected pleasure to read, as he wasn’t a “typical” romance hero either. A brilliant mathematician, his capacity of Justice of the Peace wasn’t some great calling for justice or a way for a chest-thumping alpha male to take control of his surroundings, but was instead almost a ceremonial title, since the justice system in those days was drastically different from the one we are familiar with today.
With an intriguing mystery with a surprising twist or two, and just the right amount of steam and chemistry to balance things out, this novella makes a wonderful summer read.
After the disaster that was Burning up Flint, I'd said I wouldn't be reading this series. I had a few people message me though, telling me I'd probabl...moreAfter the disaster that was Burning up Flint, I'd said I wouldn't be reading this series. I had a few people message me though, telling me I'd probably like this one, and so I gave it a chance.
Just as with all of her other books, there is far too much telling instead of showing (though, to be honest, not as badly as with some of her other books), the hero of course ties the heroine up for sex (it's gotten to the point that it's like seeing Stan Lee in a Marvel movie -- you know it's gonna be there if you just wait for it), and if I ever need to get really drunk, I'm going to create a drinking game where anytime the term "vaginal walls" or "vaginal muscles" appears in one of Ms. Dohner's books, I get to take a shot.
However, even with all of that, I really enjoyed this one. There was a lot more... chemistry between the characters, as well as just a general feeling that the heroine was willingly being seduced instead of it being a forced seduction scene (forced seduction can be hot, but not every. single. book.).
Now, as I said, I've never read any other book in the series, so while I definitely got the Zorus-is-a-demented-jerk vibe, I never witnessed all of his asshattery as it took place in previous novels. I'm sure that probably made it easier for me to accept him as a hero, since I was able to see him without being biased by past books.
I was very happy to see that there was far less forced nudity (so not my thing), though sensitive readers should be aware that there is a(n almost) rape scene.
Overall though, I enjoyed it. I may actually read Krell's book soon, though I'll of course have to check my queue before I get to read any more books that I've purchased myself.
Expected Release Date: July 25, 2011 Publisher: Harlequin Imprint: Carina...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: July 25, 2011 Publisher: Harlequin Imprint: Carina Press Author’s Website: http://www.shannoncurtis.com/ My Source for This Book: Netgalley Part of a Series: No Series Best Read In Order: N/A Steam Level: Steamy
This book started out with a bang and didn’t slow down until the very ending. We open with dowdy Maggie Kincaid, librarian for a large university, having to sneak into work so that she won’t be mobbed by her “admiring fans”. You see, Maggie, for all her prim clothes and boring lifestyle, bears a striking resemblance to a luscious model who recently posed nude for a car calendar.
Unfortunately for Maggie, this case of mistaken identity is not the only one in store for her, and minutes later she finds herself under arrest for theft and murder. It seems she’s been mistaken for a notorious international spy named Viper! But the police aren’t the only ones who want to get their hands on Maggie — the real Viper has double-crossed her boss and framed Maggie, and suffice it to say that the bossman isn’t happy. Kidnapped from the police, she must rely on her own quick thinking to escape a horrible fate when she literally stumbles into the incredibly handsome Luke Fletcher, who insists that if she wants to live, she’ll have to come with him.
Luke is a security expert charged with capturing the Viper and recovering the suit she’s stolen — a prototype of technology that can literally render the wearer invisible as it bends light particles around it. Sounding more in the realm of science fiction, the technology is frighteningly real, and the implications of it being sold on the black market are absolutely devastating.
Convinced that Maggie is actually the Viper, he presents to her seemingly irrefutable evidence of her guilt in an attempt to gain her cooperation, but Maggie insists on her innocence. Chastising himself for falling for the ploys of a master spy, he continues to interrogate her, but the more time he spends with her, the more he begins to doubt that her innocence, fear, and frustration are a ploy, as well as the harder it becomes to ignore the temptation of her body.
Soon, he not only begins to work to clear Maggie’s name, but also allows himself to give into their attraction. When more details come in, however, Luke becomes convinced that Maggie is yet again lying to him, and once again begins treating her as a suspect.
Heartbroken by Luke’s mistrust and casual disregard for their budding relationship, she escapes, determined to prove her innocence in the only way she knows how — by capturing the notorious Viper herself!
Overall, this was an incredibly fun read with just the right amount of sexual tension. A heroine whose prim facade was a result of her situation rather than lack of personality, a hero who can’t help but resist the one woman he knows he should avoid at all costs, and an exciting mystery with both espionage and just enough of a sci-fi element to appeal to the geek in all of us lead me to a solid final rating of 4/5 Stars(less)
Expected Release Date: June 20, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Harlequi...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: June 20, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Harlequin Imprint: Carina Press Author’s Website: http://elysemady.wordpress.com/ My Source for This Book: Netgalley Part of a Series: No Series Best Read In Order: N/A Steam Level: Hot
You know, it's been a long time since I've read a straight up contemporary romance, and I'd forgotten just how good they could be. There are no billionaire moguls and their virginal brides, no werewolves, no vampires, no ladies maids. or garden trysts, just realistic people with realistic problems, trying to make a go of things.
Leanne Galloway has worked her entire life towards one goal -- gaining recognition and tenure in her academic career. Only a short time away from not only completing her studies, but of possibly winning the Walter's Prize, the most prestigious award in her field that brings with it both recognition and funding, Leanne has neither the time nor the inclination to pursue a romantic relationship.
Brandon Myles has worked his way up from dancer to backstage manager at the Foxe's Den, a male exotic dance club, in order to pay for his post-graduate studies in dance. When the main act is a no-show, Brandon takes the stage in his place, and is shocked at an immediate connection he makes with one of the women in the audience. Shaking off his attraction, he ends his dance and heads backstage.
Guilted into going to the bachelorette party of her slutty childhood nemesis, Gillian, she's literally counting the minutes until she can leave, when Gillian sends a note backstage to one of the hot dancers suggesting a no-strings-attached hookup. Determined to retrieve Gillian's note before the dancer reads it, she literally bumps into Brandon as she attempts to sneak out of his dressing room.
Both of them are stunned by their incredible sexual tension and immediate attraction, and one thing quickly leads to another, resulting in a scorching hot encounter on the dressing room couch.
Writing it off as an uncharacteristic one-night stand, Leanne is horrified to discover that Brandon is also a graduate student on the same campus as she is, and immediately worries about her reputation, since right or wrong, women are held to higher standards for their personal life in academia than men are.
Attempting to play it cool and perhaps even "just be friends" doesn't work with the incredible chemistry between them, and soon they are navigating the unfamiliar waters of a new relationship, all the while trying to balance family, work, school, and the very real fact that Brandon's job as an exotic dancer could ruin both of their academic careers.
In the end, I adored this story. It was angsty without being melodramatic, incredibly hot without devolving into erotica, and the HEA was one of the more satisfying ones I've read in a very long time.
Recommended for fans of hunky heroes who feel they aren't quite worthy of the heroine, of intelligent heroines finally learning how to balance work and play, and of incredibly satisfying yet realistic resolutions, all liberally drenched with some hot, hot luvin'.
Expected Release Date: August 9, 2011 Publisher: Penguin Group Imprint: Du...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: August 9, 2011 Publisher: Penguin Group Imprint: Dutton Author’s Website: http://juliegarwood.com/ My Source for This Book: Netgalley Part of a Series: No Steam Level: Steamy
**REVIEWER’S NOTE** This was an uncorrected advanced copy, so it’s possible that some details may be changed by the publication date.
I do believe that I am now officially a Julie Garwood fangirl. *nods decisively*
Ellie was a child prodigy, with a tortured past. Intelligent beyond her years, she attracted a deranged stalker at the tender age of 11, making her life a living hell; multiple attacks, restraining orders, and finally being sent out of state to live with strangers in order to protect both her and her family has left a mark on her that no amount of education or professional success can erase. When she witnesses the shooting of an FBI agent, she’s suddenly thrust into danger yet again, despite the fact that she cannot make a positive identification.
Max bursts into her life as an FBI agent attached to the case, and the sparks fly between them. They both know that nothing can come of a relationship — she lives in the midwest while he lives in Hawaii — and yet neither can resist the other. When she flies back to her childhood home for her sister’s wedding, she faces not only the threat of being silenced before she can take the witness stand, but also of having to face her childhood nemesis, the deranged stalker who has until that point dropped off the face of the earth.
Overall, I absolutely adore it. There was enough action to keep me on my toes, blended beautifully with just enough romance and steam to keep me intrigued.
The ending was also absolutely lovely. After reading the last line I literally said “awwww” and closed the book with a smile, and that more than anything is why I cheerfully give this book 5/5 Stars(less)
You know that a book is going to be good when only a few chapters in, you...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review please visit The Romanceaholic.
You know that a book is going to be good when only a few chapters in, you think to yourself that it sure would be nice if your Kindle were waterproof so that you wouldn't have to put the book down long enough to take a shower. True story.
Now, I should probably start this review with a very important disclaimer: this is Book 17 in a series, and I haven't read a single installment previously. I decided to read this one for two main reasons. First, the blurb sounded interesting enough that I felt it would be an entertaining read, and second, because I think other readers who are also new to the series deserve to know whether or not they'd be completely confuzzled if they jumped in so late into the series.
Surprisingly enough, I have to say that I feel that this story worked quite well as a standalone. As with any late-edition to a series, there are of course references to events and relationships that were obviously detailed in previous novels, but while my curiosity was piqued in regards to a few of the existing couples, I never felt as though I was missing any key information.
I really enjoyed the ending. While it didn't wrap everything up into a neat package by any means, leaving the storyline wide open for the next installment of the series, I didn't feel as though it were a true cliff-hanger which was a relief. While there was more focus on the relationship between James and Lucy than I think is normally the case in an Urban Fantasy, the low steam level did leave me feeling that it was more UF than Paranormal Romance, and that actually appealed to me.
Overall, a very solid read that won't leave newcomers scratching their heads, and I'm looking forward to reading the next installment to the series. 4/5 Stars. (less)
What worked for me: * I love a hero who has clawed himself up from the dregs, and Dash is no exception. * I liked that Victoria was a spinster who was m...moreWhat worked for me: * I love a hero who has clawed himself up from the dregs, and Dash is no exception. * I liked that Victoria was a spinster who was more than ready to experience physicality, and I admit the anecdote about her wanting to marry her mentor greatly endeared me to her *I also liked the overall story arc of automatons who were created to help with dangerous jobs like mining and factory work, only to have the technology taken over by the government and misused. This could so easily be a parable for modern times, and I really enjoyed the parallels.
What didn't work for me: * I really felt like Victoria "let go" of the whole kidnapping thing way too easily. While I appreciate the need to get the story moving, I feel like Ms. Dee could've more fully explored some of the fear and distrust that comes from being forcibly taken and held prisoner, and more slowly allowed attraction, understanding, and a sympathy to the cause to develop.
The pacing was very fast, as is often necessary in novellas, and as such I think we missed out on some of the deliciousness of the development of a new relationship. Also, steampunk fans should be aware that the automatons are really the only "steampunk" element. While this isn't necessarily a negative point, some readers may be disappointed in the lack of airships and welding goggles :P