Overall, this was one of my favorite stories in the anthology. While I was disappointed that it included forced nudity, Cornelia’s character more than made up for it. The tension between Cornelia and Roderick was delicious, as was the love/hate relationship that began to develop almost immediately. This was my second-favorite story in the anthology.
While this one had more of a historical Outback feel to it than what I normally consider to be “steampunk”, I nevertheless enjoyed it thoroughly. The misconceptions between Esme and Jed were wonderful, and I loved the byplay between them. A solid 4/5 Stars(less)
In the end, this was by far my favorite story in the entire anthology.
While Callie’s transformation was a bit reminiscent of The Bionic Woman, that was easily brushed aside as we watched her grow over the course of the story. Of course, Jasper’s character had a lot of growing to do as well, and watching the two learn to forgive and accept each other was wonderful. The overall plot was intriguing as well, with betrayal from a close outside source, plenty of danger, and the obligation Callie now has to the military who paid for her reconstruction.
Expected Release Date: November 30, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Enta...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: November 30, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Entangled Publishing Imprint: N/A Author’s Website: http://rosalielario.com/ My Source for This Book: Gift from the Publisher Part of a Series: Yes, Book 3, Demons of Infernum Series Best Read In Order: Probably, but worked well as a standalone Steam Level: Hot
After months of no work, interdimensional bounty hunter Ronin Meyers jumps at the chance to locate an incubus who’s using succubi as murder weapons. Faced with the possibility of being forced to return to hellish Infernum if he fails, Ronin and his brothers will stop at nothing to take out the incubus and anyone else involved—even the beautiful succubus who stole his heart, then nearly his life, during the most mind-blowing hour of his existence.
Night after night, Amara and her fellow succubi are forced to extract special abilities from the strongest Otherworlders for their psychotic master’s growing collection. When the gorgeous angel-demon hybrid she believed to be dead captures her, Amara is both stunned and elated. But the happily ever after she’s dreamed of will have to wait.
Together, they must bring down the madman hellbent on destroying them… and become each other’s salvation in the process.
Half demon, half angel, Ronin Meyers has literally lived through hell. Now, after having battled alongside his brothers and defeating his evil father, Ronin finds himself bored. As an interdimensional bounty hunter, his permission to stay on Earth is dependent on the work he does — but with so few assignments coming his way, Ronin fears that soon he may be called back to Infernum to work for the council there.
When a sexy demon, Amara, almost kills Ronin with seduction, he’s embarrassed and angry, and more than that, he seems to have lost his ability to calm enemies — an ability inherited from his angel mother, and one that he’s come to rely on in battle.
When an order from the Council comes down to capture an incubus who is up to no good, Ronin is shocked to discover that the sexy she-devil who almost killed him is working with the demon in question. Capturing her to use as leverage against her master, Ronin soon discovers that there is so much more to Amara than her succubus nature. It’s impossible for anyone but another sex demon to be with a succubus without her killing them, however, so no matter how strong the chemistry, or how much they begin to care for each other, there can be no happily ever after… Or can there?
I love the entire Demons of Infernum series, which began with Blood of a Demon, followed by Mark of the Sylph, and now including this novel, Touch of the Angel. While I do suggest that new readers invest in the entire series, if for nothing else than the fact that the books are excellent, I think that for the most part, this book works just fine as a standalone. New readers may not get all of the nuances of the previously established relationships, but all of the background imperative to this particular plot line is included.
The thing that kept this from being a 5-Star story for me was the promiscuity of the heroine. Now, I fully understand that it was in no way her fault (she’s a succubus, and quite literally requires sex to survive), but even so, a past like hers is simply not something that’s easy for me to accept in a heroine. Don’t get me wrong, I liked Amara — a lot. She was intelligent, sweet, loyal, and despised being a succubus. In the end, however, it was still hard for me to recover from my initial dislike of a succubus heroine, which did affect my overall enjoyment of the book.
In the end, this was a solid entry to the series, and I think that both newcomers and fans of the previous novels will highly enjoy it for its heat, angst, and action.
Lighthearted, with an occasionally TSTL heroine, a hard-headed(but sweet) hero, just a pinch of heat, lots of hijinks, with enough heartache and angst...moreLighthearted, with an occasionally TSTL heroine, a hard-headed(but sweet) hero, just a pinch of heat, lots of hijinks, with enough heartache and angst to keep things interesting.
I actually enjoyed the whole series, though I read them in backwards order, so some of it was a bit disorienting to me.
The heroine's a bit of a baref...moreI actually enjoyed the whole series, though I read them in backwards order, so some of it was a bit disorienting to me.
The heroine's a bit of a barefooted hippie (complete with a bit of a "free love" attitude, despite her innocence), the hero (thinks he) is in love with another (married) woman, there's a whisper of magic (not really enough to make me classify it as "paranormal", but definitely there), and there's enough lighthearted angst (if there truly is such a thing) to fill a bathtub.
Expected Release Date: June 1, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Harlequin...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: June 1, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Harlequin Imprint: Harlequin Historical Author’s Website: http://www.margueritekaye.com/ My Source for This Book: eHarlequin.com Part of a Series: Yes, Book 2, Princes of the Desert Series Series Best Read In Order: Worked well as a standalone Steam Level: Steamy
I have a confession to make: I adore Sheikh stories. They’re a total guilty pleasure of mine. I also happen to love historicals, so when I saw that this was not only a Sheikh story but an historical Sheikh story, I knew I had to snag it.
Luckily for me, it quite lived up to my expectations. Having several of my favorite (and guilty pleasure) tropes, there was plenty of drama and angst, but also wonderful sensuality and of course the lovely exotic backdrop of a Middle Eastern country that is a main reason to read Sheikh stories.
Celia was a strong heroine, without being blatantly “modern” — she was uncomfortable at first in the native garb of pants and a tunic and the idea of no corset, and she was appalled at the idea of being installed into a harem, or even bathing in front of other women. Ramiz, as well, was “progressive” without completely ignoring the traditional male roles of the period. He was astonished at the idea of sharing political conversations with a female, and while he was strongly attracted to Celia, I think it was a while before he truly saw her as more than just a “woman”.
While I do wish it had been a bit longer, and perhaps had been a tiny bit more realistic ending, overall I greatly enjoyed this story. A very solid 4/5 Stars(less)
Expected Release Date: October 13, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Self-...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: October 13, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Self-published Imprint: N/A Author’s Website: http://elementalmysteries.com/ My Source for This Book: Gift from the author Part of a Series: Yes, Book 1, Elemental Mysteries Series Best Read In Order: N/A Steam Level: Warm
I’m not certain what exactly I expected when I first opened this book, but whatever it was, it could not have possibly lived up to the reality of how enjoyable it actually was. Ms. Hunter’s writing voice is simply addictive, and her ability to make you actually care about her characters is going to take her very far in the publishing world.
Beatrice (B) is not your “typical” heroine of a paranormal story. She’s not secretly a magical creature, she’s not some awesome fighter with super ninja skills, nor is she some delicate flower. Instead, she’s so very real. She has insecurities, a temper, and an inquisitive nature that greatly endeared her to me, and her relationship with Gio progresses so gradually and naturally that you barely even realize it’s happening until Gio throws everything under the bus for reasons unbeknownst to B at the time.
Gio was intriguing as well. Determined to keep himself apart from B, as he recognizes that there’s more than a simple age difference throwing stumbling blocks in their path, I don’t even think he even actaully realized he was in love with B until long after his actions loudly spoke that fact for him.
In short, I loved it. While I am a bit saddened that there was no clear “romantic happily ever after” for these two, in this particular story I have to admit that there really shouldn’t have been. Anything else would have felt wrong, because no matter how much both B and Gio greatly cared for each other, or even loved each other, there were still so many obstacles in their path that it wouldn’t have truly made sense for them to have instantly ridden off into the proverbial sunset together.
Princess Katharine of Austrich has always known that she was destine...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.com.
Princess Katharine of Austrich has always known that she was destined to have an arranged, political marriage. Having been seen as nothing more than a commodity by her cold father, she’s always striven for her every action to matter – attending parties brings rich tourists to her country, agreeing to a political marriage cements trade agreements and gives protection to her people, and remaining a virgin to appease the traditional rulers of other countries ensures that she always has a bargaining chip if the original agreement falls through. Cold blooded, true, but Katharine knows that since a female can never rule her country, she must do whatever is necessary to make sure that she can contribute in any way to the well-being of her people.
When her intended husband and his family are killed by insurgents of his country, leaving only the younger son Zahir to rule, Katharine is saddened by the loss but not heartbroken — after all, while she certainly liked Malik, theirs was by no means a love match.
Now several years later, with her father quickly approaching his deathbed and her younger brother too young to ascend the throne, Katharine must approach Malik’s younger brother and convince him to enter into a political marriage with her, or else her beloved country would be placed under the rule of a power-hungry man who would surely destroy everything her family has worked for.
Sheikh Zahir of Hajar is as reclusive as a monarch could ever be — choosing to address his people via radio from the security of his palace walls, and delegating whenever possible. Horribly scarred, both physically and emotionally, by the attack that took the lives of his entire family, Zahir has well earned his reputation as The Beast of Hajar.
When the lovely Katharine first approaches him with the idea of their marriage, Zahir expects her to flee in terror when faced with both his scars and his temper, but the beauty surprises him with both her tenacity and her pleas for him to think of the good of both their countries.
Reluctantly agreeing to a temporary marriage to protect Austrich until Katharine’s brother reaches the age at which he can legally rule, Zahir waits for Katharine to turn from him, but the infuriating woman not only refuses to be intimidated, but insists on trying to break him out of his self-imposed isolation.
Having agreed that their marriage will be a temporary one, both Zahir and Katharine soon discover a blistering attraction that has the power to leave them both burned…
Anyone who knows me already realizes that I am a Maisey Yates fangirl, so I pretty much fell over with joy when this arrived in the mail, and I was so happy to discover that it more than lived up to the hype.
Ms. Yates has such a talent for writing heroes who can be ruthless jerks and yet we readers cheerfully forgive them for their behavior because they’re so beautifully damaged. Zahir was absolutely delicious, even with his physical imperfections, and Katharine proved that even a perfect outer appearance doesn’t always protect one from internal scars.
Perfect for fans of tortured and scarred heroes, arranged marriages, and of finding that sometimes protecting those you care about just means loving them with all your heart.
Expected Release Date: January 31, 2012 Publisher: Harlequin Imprint: HQNb...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: January 31, 2012 Publisher: Harlequin Imprint: HQNbooks Author’s Website: http://www.brendajoyce.com/ My Source for This Book: Netgalley Part of a Series: Yes, Book 1, The Spymaster’s Men Series Best Read In Order: N/A Steam Level: Warm
Set against the vibrant tapestry of the French revolution and similar uprisings in England, Julianne’s Jacobin sympathies were not only understandable, but in my mind, a thing to bring respect. While her belief in the good of man caused her to be manipulated, her idealism was in my opinion admirable, and made me sympathize greatly with her character.
While I understood Dominic’s motives in keeping his true identity a secret, I still had a very hard time respecting him for taking advantage of Julianne in every way possible, and in the end I think my overall enjoyment of the novel suffered. After all, it’s difficult to love a book when you despise one of the main characters.
However, the rich details of the historical period, coupled with quite a bit of heartbreak, betrayal, intrigue, and danger, all have me salivating for more. I will definitely be reading the next installment to the series when it is published, and would recommend this story for fans of historical romance who may perhaps be tiring a bit of the Regency or Victorian backdrops.
I'm once again torn on a rating -- there was a lot wrong from a "literary" standpoint, and yet I literally couldn't put it down. Review to follow, 4/5...moreI'm once again torn on a rating -- there was a lot wrong from a "literary" standpoint, and yet I literally couldn't put it down. Review to follow, 4/5 Stars(less)
Expected Release Date: September 12, 2011 Publisher: Self Published Imp...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.com
Expected Release Date: September 12, 2011 Publisher: Self Published Imprint: N/A Author’s Website: http://www.cynthiaeden.com My Source for This Book: Amazon.com Part of a Series: Yes, Bound series Series Best Read In Order: Works well as a standalone Steam Level: Hot
This was a fast paced, action packed, sexy little paranormal novella, and I loved it. Cade was absolutely delicious, and Allison was likable as well. The chemistry was sizzling, and the actual storyline about the witch and other assassins, as well as the vampires on Allison’s trail kept the story moving.
I loved the hints at Cade’s background, as well as his protective instincts, and Allison’s determination to keep from becoming an “evil” vampire made me love her as well.
Recommended for fans of sexy as sin shifters, starcrossed lovers, and finding out you shouldn’t try to mess with fate. 5/5 Stars.(less)
Expected Release Date: August 30, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Tor...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.com
Expected Release Date: August 30, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Tor Imprint: Tor Teen Author’s Website: http://kendareblake.com/ My Source for This Book: Personal Gift Part of a Series: Yes, Book 1, Anna Series Series Best Read In Order: N/A Steam Level: Warm
Warning: This review contains minor spoilers
Cas Lowood is no ordinary 17 year old boy. He is a ghost-hunter, one of the few descended from a long line of hunters who can not only see and communicate with malevolent ghosts, but who possesses the power to end their reign of terror. When his father was brutally murdered on a routine ghost-hunting mission, Cas picked up where his father left off, training and searching, waiting for the day that he is strong enough to go after the being that murdered his father.
When one of his associates forwards information about Anna Korlov, known now as Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas feels an immediate strong compulsion to seek out the murderous spirit, and put her back in the grave. When he arrives in town, however, he discovers that Anna is much more powerful than any other spirit he’s ever encountered, and it will take not only his own strength, but the help of the locals to discover the source of her power and break the curse that has trapped her in the old Victorian house, destined to murder any who enter…
I wanted, so badly, to adore this story. It got off to such a strong start that I in all seriousness told Mr. Romanceaholic that I sincerely hoped that someone would have the good sense to make this novel into a movie, because the storyline and visuals were absolutely engrossing. Everything from Cas’ family history to his hunting down and killing murderous ghosts, to utilizing his father’s contacts to choose his next target, to his mother’s white witchcraft and enabling of his lifestyle. Even the relationships that Cas developed with the local schoolkids, and the horror of watching a ghost brutally murder someone right in front of him while inexplicably sparing his life, all added to my excitement about the story, and the incredible descriptions painted such a vivid image of the story in my mind that I couldn’t help but wish I could go see it come to life on the big-screen.
However, about halfway in, the story became less frightening and creepy and turned more silly and cheesy, culminating in an ending that had me sighing, not with contentment, but with disappointment. Once Anna’s curse was broken, there was practically no tension left in the book, and when another Big Bad made an appearance, it was too little too late for me, despite the valiant effort at gore, creepiness, and vivid descriptions.
Am I still interested in seeing this book turned into a movie? Probably not, unless the screenwriters work with Ms. Kendare to amp up the horror and tone down the cheese in the ending. Will I read the sequel when it’s released? Absolutely. Do I recommend this to fans of YA horror? You betcha.
Expected Release Date: November 25, 2011 Publisher: Self Published Imp...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.com.
Expected Release Date: November 25, 2011 Publisher: Self Published Imprint: N/A Author’s Website: http://www.staceykennedy.com/ My Source for This Book: Gift from the Author Part of a Series: Yes, 1NightStand #3; Part of the Madame Eve’s 1NightStand Holiday Anthology Series Best Read In Order: Worked well as a standalone Steam Level: Scorching
Overall, this was a decadent little quickie that will definitely get the motor running for fans of BDSM. Clocking in at only 20 pages of story in PDF form, it still packs an incredible punch, with not only exceptional eroticism but also a delightful romance to go along with it.
Recommended for fans of fast, hot reads, of wickedly intense BDSM, and of realizing that sometimes the best Christmas present is one you never even thought to ask for.
Expected Release Date: November 15, 2011 Publisher: Samhain Publishin...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.com.
Expected Release Date: November 15, 2011 Publisher: Samhain Publishing Imprint: N/A Author’s Website: http://tessadare.com/ My Source for This Book: Won in a Contest Part of a Series: Yes, “A Spindle Cove Novella”/Spindle Cove 1.5 Series Best Read In Order: Works well as a standalone Steam Level: Steamy
Despite my dislike for the hero (and my firm belief that he needed a good horsewhipping), this was an overall enjoyable read. With three-dimensional characters, plenty of sexual tension, some intrigue, action, and heartache, I do think that even newcomers to the series will find this one well worth the money.
At the time of this review, the novella is only $0.79 at Amazon.com, and the previous book in the series, A Night To Remember, is only $4.99 on Kindle.
Overall, while I personally couldn’t get past my dislike for the hero to rate this one higher, I will admit that I certainly enjoyed the author’s writing style, and will very likely be picking up the first book in the series before all is said and done.
Expected Release Date: July 19, 2011 (Available Now! Publisher: Harleq...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.com
Expected Release Date: July 19, 2011 (Available Now! Publisher: Harlequin Imprint: Harlequin Presents Author’s Website: http://www.caitlincrews.com My Source for This Book: Amazon.com Part of a Series: Yes, The Notorious Wolfs Series Best Read In Order: Worked well as a standalone Steam Level: Steamy
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this one. Grace is definitely one of my favorite HP heroines at the moment, with her backbone, sass, confidence, and vulnerability, and Lucas was delightful as well. The dynamics of their relationship were what really kept me invested, and the crackling chemistry between them was just the icing on the cake.
Recommended for fans of conceited playboy heroes, of stuffy but not innocent heroines, and of choosing to fight past long-standing obstacles that may come between you and happiness.
I didn't realize when I started this that it was the second book in the series (someone really needs to edit that information here on Goodreads btw --...moreI didn't realize when I started this that it was the second book in the series (someone really needs to edit that information here on Goodreads btw -- I'm not sure how to do it). I didn't really feel it stood that well on its own, and having not read the first book, I had quite a few moments where I felt severely out of the loop.
That said, despite the love triangle (I don't typically like love triangles), and Ian's annoying tendency to call her "My Love" as though it were really her name, it was an engrossing story with plenty of action. Despite knowing what happens, I'll probably go back and read the first one when I have a chance :)
Expected Release Date: November 11, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher:...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.com.
Expected Release Date: November 11, 2011 (Available Now!) Publisher: Harlequin Imprint: Carina Press Author’s Website: http://tonianderson.blogspot.com/ My Source for This Book: Netgalley Part of a Series: No Series Best Read In Order: N/A Steam Level: Steamy
Dr. Cameran Young is the lead biologist on the Environment Impact Assessment team sent to monitor fish migration patterns in relation to the building of a dam in the Labrador, Canada. Expecting difficulties with the locals as well as the challenges of the location and of maintaining her health despite a chronic medical condition, she immediately found herself out of her element when on her first day she discovered the victim of a grisly murder. Both dazzled and disgusted by the handsome — and promiscuous — helicopter pilot, Daniel, who comes to her rescue, she can’t help but be attracted to him. She knows his kind, however, and while he makes it more than obvious that he’s a charming rogue ready to bed-hop with anyone willing, Cameran’s own self respect requires that there be some sort of emotional connection between her and a lover.
Daniel is more than just a pretty face with a womanizing reputation, however. Once a valued member of Britain’s Special Air Service, when a mission went horribly wrong he willingly took the fall to protect his team from the fallout, and now relies on booze, fast women, and the thrill of flying to keep his fragile grip on his sanity.
But Daniel can’t seem to get past his fascination with the girl-next-door looks and sassy personality of Dr. Cameran, and when it becomes evident that she is at risk due to not only her job but also her connection to the murder investigation, his protective instincts come roaring to the surface. Knowing that he can no longer keep his distance, he will risk his heart, and his life, to keep her safe.
Cameran’s medical condition put her in a position of constantly being cosseted or seen as fragile, and she fights every single day to not only keep her condition under control but to fight stereotypes and misconceptions about it. A strong, intelligent woman, she also recognizes that while a fling with Daniel might break her heart, it might also be worth it just to experience a single moment in her life where she’s able to just enjoy herself without really thinking too hard about the consequences.
For Daniel, no-strings sex and alcohol have been his crutch after his fall from grace in the military. Suffering from a fairly strong case of PTSD, he doesn’t dare seek out a meaningful relationship because he really has nothing to offer. When he meets Cameran, however, he can’t help but be attracted to her, and when he learns of his disorder, long-dead protective instincts rise to the surface, until he will do anything to keep her safe.
The mystery behind the grisly murder of a young woman and the unknown killer who will not let Cameran stand in their way added a great deal of intensity to the story, and the twist at the end was masterfully done.
Overall, this was a fast-paced, exciting story with both large amounts of action and drama and a strong dose of sexy romance. Recommended for fans of tortured heroes, tough yet vulnerable heroines, and exciting suspense. 4.5/5 Stars (less)
Read as part of the new edition, Regency Marriages from Harlequin UK, full review to follow.
Elizabeth Rolls was an author I cut my romance-reading te...moreRead as part of the new edition, Regency Marriages from Harlequin UK, full review to follow.
Elizabeth Rolls was an author I cut my romance-reading teeth on, and while her high levels of angst and Big Misunderstandings might be something that some readers cringe from, I slurp them up with a big spoon.
Expected Release Date: December 5, 2011 (Available Now) Publisher: Harleq...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: December 5, 2011 (Available Now) Publisher: Harlequin Imprint: Carina Press My Source for This Book: Netgalley Official Blurb:
Changed forever after tragedy, a woman must draw strength from her husband’s love. A man learns that love isn’t always what you expect. A thief steals the heart of a vengeful professor. And an American inventor finds love Down Under. Enjoy Victorian Christmas with a clockwork twist in these four steampunk novellas.
Stories also available for purchase separately from Carina Press.
Overall, this was an incredible winter anthology, and I adored every single story. It’s not often that I read an anthology where each story can stand so well on its own, but I would have gladly purchased each story individually, and never regretted it for a moment.
The only “downside” really is that there was no clearly overwhelming “Christmas” theme to any of them. For me, this worked out beautifully, because I was unable to read it before the holiday, and instead simply enjoyed it as an outstanding “winter” collection.