I love both of these series so it was great to have them in one book. I was really sad to see the note at the beginning from Lora saying this was the...moreI love both of these series so it was great to have them in one book. I was really sad to see the note at the beginning from Lora saying this was the last Nauti book. Both books were smoking hot with great storylines.(less)
I have yet to find a Maya Banks book that I didn't enjoy and this was no exception. There were some very emotional scenes in this story and the charac...moreI have yet to find a Maya Banks book that I didn't enjoy and this was no exception. There were some very emotional scenes in this story and the characters were well thought out. I can't wait for the next book in this series. (less)
Full review to follow when the review goes up on the site but Shayla has done it again. This series gets better with every book and I cannot wait for...moreFull review to follow when the review goes up on the site but Shayla has done it again. This series gets better with every book and I cannot wait for the next one!!(less)
Hope Flames is the first book in the new Hope series by Jaci Burton. I am a huge fan of Burton’s Wild Rider series so when I saw that she had a new series coming out, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. She writes smoking hot sex but one of the things I enjoy about reading her books is that the sex isn’t the primary focus. A lot of authors lately seem to build a storyline around the sex but Ms. Burton builds strong characters and interesting worlds, and then adds the sex as a bonus.
Emma Burnett is a veterinarian who has recently moved back to her hometown of Hope, Oklahoma to take over the practice of the popular town vet who had recently retired. When local police officer Luke McCormack brings in his injured police dog Boomer, the sparks fly. Luke promptly puts his foot in his mouth by asking Emma out in a way that makes it look like a pity date and Emma says thanks, but no thanks.
After a disastrous marriage and divorce, Luke is determined to never do a serious relationship again. He is careful to only hook up with women who know the deal, and his first impression of Emma is that she’s not a one night stand kind of woman. Emma has her own relationship demons and is as adamant as Luke that she does not want a boyfriend or complications.
A burglar has targeted Hope’s medical facilities, stealing all the drugs and frustrating the police. Their first break comes when Emma happens to catch a glimpse of the guy and Luke moves in to her place to protect her while they try to catch the guy. The couple and their dogs fall into a comfortable routine, despite their insistence that the relationship is just casual.
While I really wanted to love this book, I’m afraid it was just okay. There were several things that frustrated me and interfered with my enjoyment of the story, and I found myself focusing more on those things than the overall book. The first thing was the constant mentions about this horrible relationship that Emma had been in. It was brought up so often that between her inner dialogue and comments from her parents, I was expecting something much more dramatic. I’m not trying to trivialize what Emma went through, but it felt a little anticlimactic when we got the whole story.
The second thing that irked me was the wrap up of the two “dramatic” storylines. It felt like once we got to the end, there was a mad rush to finish the book and I kind of sat there and said “where’s the rest?”. There was also a complete overreaction by Emma to a situation that came out of nowhere. I don’t want to give anything away so I won’t get specific, but that part had me wondering if I had been missing pages because it felt like I must have missed something.
Despite these issues, the secondary characters were really interesting and I’m looking forward to reading the next book in the series. I’m hoping that this was just a one-off because I really enjoy Jaci Burton books overall.(less)
Do or Die is the first book in the Reluctant Heroes series by Suzanne Brockmann. This new series is a spin-off of Ms. Brockmann’s popular Troubleshooters series and in fact Do or Die is set in the TS world. Characters Martell Griffin from Force of Nature and Deb and Yashi, who work with Jules Cassidy, all play prominent roles in this book. If you are a fan of that series you are going to love this one.
Phoebe Kruger is an attorney in her first few weeks at a prestigious law firm when she is pulled in to assist on a file with one of the firm’s super secret clients. The partner in charge of the file is injured in a car accident and no one else seems to have any information on him. Knowing nothing about the client except what she is able to dig up on the internet, she heads to the prison where he is serving time, in to offer him what should have been the deal of a lifetime. Teaming up with Martell Griffin, a police officer turned lawyer, Phoebe must convince her client to work with the government or two kidnapped children will disappear for good.
Ian Dunn is a former Navy Seal who has apparently gone rogue and turned to a life of crime. When Phoebe and Martell show up at the prison, Dunn not only turns down the opportunity to get out of jail and rescue the two children, he does all he can to make the duo go away. Refusing to take no for an answer, Griffin pulls some strings and a few short hours later Ian walks out the front doors of the prison but he is not a happy man. The lives of his brother and his brother’s family depending on him staying IN jail so in addition to having to plan a rescue for the kids, he also has to figure out a way to convince the mob that he didn’t go back on the terms of his deal with them.
After taking off with Phoebe in tow, Ian beelines to his brother Aaron’s house to warn him of the impending danger. The mob has friends in high places so they know immediately that he is out and they also head there. After a shoot-out, Aaron, Ian and Phoebe are trapped in the panic room and with the house surrounded by police and the mob, they have no choice by to contact Griffin and the people he reports to for help getting out of the mess. In turn Ian must agree to rescue the kids – which he was going to attempt anyways.
Do or Die is a fast-paced book with plenty of action, interesting characters and an adorable main couple. I really loved Phoebe and Ian, although her naivete about the criminals that she represents was a little unbelievable and frustrating. That was a very minor irritant and overall I really enjoyed the book. The most interesting character in the book was Francine and I absolutely cannot wait for her story. Just from the bits that Brockmann dropped in the book I know that one is going to be a huge tear jerker and I’m going to love every minute of it. The only complaint I’ve ever had about her books is that there is typically a large gap between them and I’m one of those that forgets a lot of stuff when you have to wait a year. Hopefully that won’t be the case for this series.
On a side note I must say I love that Ms. Brockmann writes great romantic suspense books but she does not hesitate to have gay primary characters. For the most part gay couples usually appear in M/M erotic books or they are friends of the primary couple, and it is refreshing to see them take part in a story with more than just sex. She also avoids stereotypes and writes realistic men that you can relate to.
If you are looking for a well-written book that has a lot of action and likeable characters, you will enjoy this one. I cannot wait for the next one to be released! (less)
After the Storm is the 9th book in the KGI series by Maya Banks and it is the story that I have been waiting for! Chances are, if you are a fan of this series you too have been waiting for Donovan’s happily ever after, and Maya delivered as usual. It had the perfect amount of sweetness, hotness and emotion and you will most definitely fall in love with Donovan even more!
Eve is on the run with her younger siblings Travis and Cammie when they wind up in Kentucky Lake. Planning to stay only for a short time while Cammie recovers from an unknown illness, Travis gets a job at the hardware store the Kelly’s own. Rusty recognizes some of herself in Travis and enlists Donovan’s help to find out what is going on with the family.
Can I just say I’m totally in love with Donovan? Although he is happy for his siblings and the love that they have found, he is also a little envious. His house has been fully built on the Kelly Compound but he has not decorated or really furnished the home. He has been waiting for his future wife to come in and put her touches on the house and this just adds to his appeal.
As soon as he sets eyes on Eve, Travis and Cammie, his protective instincts kick in and Donovan immediately wants to find out what they are running from. Eve panics and attempts to hit the road again with her siblings, when a tornado hits town. Cammie and Travis make it into a culvert but Eve is caught up in the storm. After being rescued, Eve realizes she cannot run with her own injuries, Travis injured and Cammie still severely ill. Left with no choice but to trust Donovan and KGI, Eve let’s down her guard and confides what they are running from.
I don’t want to give away too much but the inevitable rescue scenario was done really well. In addition to the regular Kelly team members we get to see a little more of Skylar who is one badass bitch, and I can tell there is a killer story there waiting to be told. For that matter, after reading this book I’m dying to read Swanny’s story too. He’s such a sweetheart with Cammie, who is extremely scared of men and he endured a lot of the same treatment and torment as Nathan.
If I had a few small complaints about After the Storm they would be a) the number of times it is mentioned that Donovan has a soft spot for women and children and b) that there wasn’t more “action”. One of the things I love about the KGI series is the planning and execution of the missions so I missed that action part a tiny bit. Definitely not enough to ruin the book for me – it is up there as one of my favorites in the series.
On the plus side I felt we really got to know Rusty a lot better and got to see her as a strong, confident Kelly woman and that was great to see. There is one scene with her that literally had me yelling “yay” in the middle of the night as my poor boyfriend slept beside me. Oddly he didn’t find the scene as scream worthy as I did…
Overall Donovan’s story gave me exactly what I had hoped for. Eve is a fighter who fiercely protects Cammie and Travis, and she will be good a great match for Donovan, and will fit right in with the Kelly women. Maya has done it again!(less)
Absolutely loved this book. It's a close call between this one and Cam's as my favorites. I love that Lorelei writes strong confident women and this w...moreAbsolutely loved this book. It's a close call between this one and Cam's as my favorites. I love that Lorelei writes strong confident women and this was no exception. I can't wait to read the next one!(less)
Theirs To Keep is the first book in the Tangled Hearts trilogy by Maya Banks. After following Maya’s posts on Facebook regarding this trilogy I was really excited to read it and as usual, she did not disappoint! Where a lot of Maya’s most popular series center around a group of friends and/or family, with each character having their own story, this series is going to focus on the core relationship between Elle, Cade and Merrick.
Cade Winslow and Merrick Sullivan are best friends who own their own private security business. Merrick is also a professional mixed martial arts fighter who is on the cusp of his shot at the championship. When the two are pulled out of bed to investigate a break-in at one of their clients, they discover Elle hiding in a cupboard covered in blood, terrified out of her mind, and unable to remember who she is or what happened to her. Both men are instantly drawn to the wounded woman, and after getting her some medical help, they take her home to help her recover. Elle may not remember anything about who she is or who hurt her, but she instinctively knows she is safe with the two men. As she recovers physically, small snippets of her past come back to her, but she is still unable to remember her name or any other important details.
With most books that have this type of a relationship, the men have experience sharing a woman before they meet “the one”. That was not the case in this book. Cade and Merrick both want to protect Elle, but they also both start to develop feelings for her. The two decide that their friendship is too important to them and that the answer to their problem is for both men to be in a relationship with her. One thing I love about Maya is her steaming hot sex scenes, but in this book the sex doesn’t come until much later in the story. If you are looking for a purely erotic book then this one isn’t for you, but the fact that the sex took so long completely made sense with the story that Maya was developing between the three. The focus is on the emotional relationship between them and was really about Elle and her journey to get strong enough that she was ready to remember her past.
The book takes place over the span of about a year and during that time Merrick makes his play for the championship, while Elle helps Cade with the business to free up Merrick’s time. The two men have made some enemies in the course of business and that provides some of the action to keep the story going at a fast pace. Cade and Merrick are completely lovable and their loyalty to Elle and their determination to protect her at all costs comes off as endearing not assholish. Elle is a very fragile and wounded woman when we meet her, but she grows throughout the story. She almost doesn’t want to remember her past because she’s so happy with what she has found with the two men but she eventually realizes that she can never be whole unless those pieces are filled in.
Warning – if you are not a fan of cliffhangers then you may not like this book as much. This isn’t a story where Elle meets the men, falls in love, gains her memory back and they all live happily ever after. I suspect that there are some very unhappy times coming up for this trio in the next book and I’m hoping that in the end they come out stronger than ever because I really loved all three. If you like your stories tied up all nice and neat then you will be disappointed, but it is a beautiful story that sets up the next book perfectly and I cannot wait to get my hands on the next one!(less)
I love all the books in this series but this one is now one of my favorites. The struggles they both went through to find their way back to each other...moreI love all the books in this series but this one is now one of my favorites. The struggles they both went through to find their way back to each other made the story difficult to put down. (less)