I loved the romance with a touch of fantasy in this story. I loved the characters. I loved the premise. Basically I loved this book. But, and it's kinI loved the romance with a touch of fantasy in this story. I loved the characters. I loved the premise. Basically I loved this book. But, and it's kind of a big but, once the romantic interest turned to romantic action, I got pretty weirded out. The concept of being the adult friend of a young child, even if you are imaginary, and then becoming sexually involved with that child when they are in their thirties is a little too pedophile-esque for my taste. Once the thought occurred, it distracted me from the rest of the book. I couldn't get past it, which is the only reason that took this 5 shot book to 4 shots....more
Finding that your life hasn't turned out as planned and making drastic changes to get back on course. Going after your dreams and finding new ones inFinding that your life hasn't turned out as planned and making drastic changes to get back on course. Going after your dreams and finding new ones in the process. Even positive change can threaten those around you. These ideas made Out of Eden extremely relatable. Who hasn't examined their life only to discover dreams sacrificed for other people's benefit?
I loved the portrayal of small town life. Kylie being a woman who's never traveled out of the area Jack returning to the life after working years for the NYPD showed a great mix of the desire to escape and the need to be able to come home again. The idea of small towns is very interesting. Everyone knows your business, good and bad. It's like being stuck in high school forever and I find that horrifically entertaining.
Kylie and Jack have a great attraction going. The tension between the both of them, the sheer sexual chemistry and the denial on both sides made me root for them from word one. The sex scenes in Out of Eden are perfectly balanced. They're detailed enough to induce the sexy tingle without going into explicitly vivid territory. There's a scene in a jail cell involving handcuffs that was so hot it could set you on fire.
I wasn't a huge fan of the mob angle. Everyone in town is obsessed with Omerta, a television show that sounds a lot like The Sopranos. They talk, dress and act like the mobsters, so when the real mob guys show up in town, no one notices. I personally don't enjoy anything related to organized crime. Thankfully, this was in the background most of the time. The inclusion was key to the storyline and I found it pretty close to enjoyable.
Out of Eden is a fun romp through small town life. It's romantic, sexy, mysterious and completely satisfying....more
All I Ever Wanted is a cute and fun romantic story with an amazing cast of characters. The romantic leads, Callie, Ian and Mark all sort of rubbed meAll I Ever Wanted is a cute and fun romantic story with an amazing cast of characters. The romantic leads, Callie, Ian and Mark all sort of rubbed me the wrong way (for different reasons) but Callie's family and friends kept my interest throughout the book.
Callie is a little annoying sometimes. She's in love with Mark, her boss and childhood crush, and functions in a land of denial. Mark gets engaged to someone else, forcing Callie is accept the reality that they aren't going to end up together. Callie, who tends to see only the good in people, is shaken to her very core because she just can't see Mark for the slimy user that's obvious to everyone else. So, of course, Callie finds a new guy. One who doesn't seem the least bit interested in her or anyone else. Ian's got issues of his own, but for the life of me, I can't see why Callie considered pursuing him at all. Perhaps some version of small town desperation?
All I Ever Wanted truly shines when it comes to Callie's family. She lives with her grumpy one-legged grandfather. Her father is attempting to win back her mother after infidelity and over 20 years of divorce. Her mother is taunting her father by making him go on the Tour of Whores - introducing her to all the women he slept with while she was pregnant with their son. Her sister, who sees no need for men, is forced to date by her adopted daughter. And her aimless little brother provides much comedic relief. Add in the people Callie works with, the colorful townspeople and Callie's married best friend and the background of the story is even more entertaining that the plot itself.
Callie wants to be married in a way that I think many may have a bit of trouble relating to. She's a warm, loving character that can be exasperating at times. Her choices in love don't seem all that smart at face value, but in the end she manages to get exactly where she needs to be. All I Ever Wanted is surprisingly touching at times and will definitely leave you with a smile on your face....more
The Good: Two MJD romance/erotica stories make up Doing it Right. It's a quick read and the sex is super hot.
The Bad: Unfortunately, the sex is the onThe Good: Two MJD romance/erotica stories make up Doing it Right. It's a quick read and the sex is super hot.
The Bad: Unfortunately, the sex is the only thing right about this book. Davidson attempts her well-known style of humor here, but it just doesn't work for the characters. They can't pull off the wit nor the scandalous, ridiculous situations they are thrust into....more
The Good: Jackie Collins never fails to bring sexy, scandalous, and utterly addictive into every novel she writes. The World is Full of Married Men brThe Good: Jackie Collins never fails to bring sexy, scandalous, and utterly addictive into every novel she writes. The World is Full of Married Men brings everything you would expect. Witty, engaging, ritzy and devious, this is the inside look into the lives of the Hollywood elite that we can't help wanting to know.
The Bad: The World Full of Married Men is one of Jackie Collins' earliest books and it does show. The writing isn't nearly as clear and well crafted as her subsequent books. The characters aren't fully fleshed out and the the sexy is toned down a lot from what we've come to know....more
What impressed me: Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor is a delightful, romantic holiday story. I loved how real it felt, betwWhy read: Received for review
What impressed me: Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor is a delightful, romantic holiday story. I loved how real it felt, between Mark's concern for the niece he is now raising and Maggie's guilt over the dead husband she's moving past. The characters were fantastic, especially Mark's brothers and I hope they are the focus of future books in the series.
What disappointed me: The book was very, very short - more novella length than an actual novel. I feel that the Maggie and Mark's lives could have been expanded upon more, especially since time (even weeks at a time) would pass unseen.
Recommended: Yes. A great contemporary romance with a wonderful holiday focus.
Continue series: Yes. I'm very interested to see if the books focus on the other Nolan men and would love to see more of Mark, Maggie and Holly....more
Kristan Higgins' leading ladies kind of annoy me. They're always so honestly written with their flaws obvious from the very start, that it makes me soKristan Higgins' leading ladies kind of annoy me. They're always so honestly written with their flaws obvious from the very start, that it makes me sort of dislike them from the get go. Usually by the middle of a Higgins novel, I find that annoyance fading - growing to love the character as she works through whatever issue is making her act like an idiot. By the time fate steps in to muck up the happy ending I've now decided she both needs and deserves, I'm morally outraged that she may not get the happily-ever-after. This full circle of emotions has happened with every Higgins book I've read and My One and Only happily follows the trend.
Harper is a realist. When it comes to marriage, she knows the odds are against you. She knows that love isn't enough to base a relationship on. She knows it's better to walk away when things start going wrong rather than allow for second chances. This realistic approach to romance makes her a highly effective divorce attorney. It also drives the men in her life crazy - and not in a good way.
Harper's boyfriend calls her dude, but he's loyal like a puppy dog. He's safe, where her romantic ex-husband Nick was not. Even after years of estrangement, Nick and Harper have chemistry. It's obvious from the very beginning who Harper will choose, but the road they take to get there is strewn with relationship issues, emotional baggage and Harper being Harper.
I loved Nick from his first appearance and understood why he could still destroy Harper's diehard rationality like no one else. Harper is feisty, which has its appeal and makes for some very funny scenes, but I couldn't always understand by Nick even bothered with her.
I couldn't help but root for Harper to find her own happiness. Having stood in her own way for much of her adult life, she needed to learn some hard lessons and through her own relationships and those of her friends and family around her, she does just that. Funny, heart-warming, and occasionally drive-you-crazy annoying, My One and Only will captivate even the most unromantic among us....more
Only Mine, the fourth book in the Fool's Gold series, brings a reality dating show to the sweet little town with the embarrassing man-shortage. In thiOnly Mine, the fourth book in the Fool's Gold series, brings a reality dating show to the sweet little town with the embarrassing man-shortage. In this installment, we experience Dakota's story. We've seen Dakota often as Ethan's sister, Raoul's employee and friend to many of the town women, but as with these romances, we get to know her much better in her own book.
Dakota is a wonderful character - strong and willing to do whatever's necessary to get what she dreams. Dakota's always pictured a future that included children. Months back, she learned that it was highly unlikely she would ever be able to get pregnant, even with medical intervention. She feels broken, but carries on, taking steps to adopt as a single parent.
While under obvious emotional distress, she's also working with the reality show crew as a favor to Mayor Marsha. Enter Finn, an irate older brother determined to get his twin siblings off the show and back to college in Alaska where he believes they belong. Finn's a bit too convinced he's in the right when it comes to his brothers. It's sort of abrasive and annoying at times, but Dakota seems to find it amusing most of the time.
The Fool's Gold series is very child-friendly, in that most of the story lines revolve around children or end up with someone pregnant. Not only is there a man-shortage, but those women are a highly fertile bunch. This will alienate some readers, but I totally appreciate the complete realism it brings the series.
Only Mine is an excellent contemporary romance. It's funny, sweet, sometimes sexy and occasionally complicated in the best way possible. Fool's Gold remains one of my favorite series....more
Into the Wild is more of a companion novel to Out of Eden than a sequel. Although we occasionally see or hear about Kylie and Jack, it would be a streInto the Wild is more of a companion novel to Out of Eden than a sequel. Although we occasionally see or hear about Kylie and Jack, it would be a stretch to even consider them secondary characters. Into the Wild is about River and Spenser's romance. Or to be more exact, the book is about River and Spenser's adventure in the jungle with romance making an appearance every now and then.
River is neurotic about germs and bugs. Her need to control her life and her future is what caused her fiance to leave her at the alter. She has abandonment issues due to a less than perfect childhood and the public loss of her fiance and planned future drives her neurotic tendencies into overdrive. When it seems her long estranged father needs rescuing, River embarks on a crazy journey in the name of closure. The entire premise seems a little unbelievable, but Ciotta manages to make the adventure seem plausible even in the face of neurosis.
Spenser has baggage of his own and the couple clearly fight against their growing attraction. While this was obviously going to be a happily-ever-after story, the mental and physical obstacles the two face often seem insurmountable. At times the romance seemed out of place in the story and distracted from the life-or-death situations the couple often faced. It worked on the whole, but the budding relationship felt like poor timing much of the time.
I enjoyed Out of Eden much more than Into the Wild, but I prefer my contemporary romances to be in more conventional settings and my adventures to have lusty encounters rather than romances with potential for life-long love. The book is able to straddle the genre line in a workable fashion, but didn't appeal to me as much as it would have if it leaned more heavily in either direction....more
I generally enjoy Jennifer Crusie's romances, but Fast Women never hit its stride. Nell is sad most of the time. Even when she starts becoming empowerI generally enjoy Jennifer Crusie's romances, but Fast Women never hit its stride. Nell is sad most of the time. Even when she starts becoming empowered, she comes off more bossy and annoying than strong and self-confident. Without a likeable main character to root for any enjoyment I got out of the romance was completely one sided.
Nell had the potential to be great. Once she finally started getting angry, she became a whole other woman. And then, unfortunately, instead of settling into a likeable combination of confident and fun, she became grating with her incessant need to have everything exactly to her liking. Gabe, Nell's boss and love interest, is her exact opposite in most ways, but his rigid need for things to stay the same, much like Nell's need to change things, crosses the line from quirky to obnoxious rather quickly.
A decent mystery makes the book readable, while Gabe's partner Riley completely steals the show. Instead of caring about whodunit or whether Gabe and Nell can make the relationship work, I only really cared about what Riley was doing. He was easygoing, fun and carried almost the entire book. Now, had the book been about him I probably would have loved it.
Fast Women was hard to get through simply because the two characters I should have cared about most were the ones I wished would just go away. Secondary characters like Riley, Game's ex-wife Chloe and Nell's friend Suze make the book as good as it is and Fast Women is worth a read is only to meet them....more