**spoiler alert** This book started out great by giving me a clear idea of the h/h, their histories and goals. I enjoyed watching them grow fond of ea...more**spoiler alert** This book started out great by giving me a clear idea of the h/h, their histories and goals. I enjoyed watching them grow fond of each other, or rather, of watching the hero thinking he was married to the heroine and the heroine giving in even though she was a single woman past her prime. I didn't like how she took advantage of him, given his lost memory, but he seemed to get over it quickly enough as he regained pieces of his previous life.
The story went downhill when the h/h return to London and it's revealed that they both have the same backstory. Both were taken from their parent and raised to think the parent had died. Both are reunited with families they didn't know they had, and luckily enough, their families are all kinds of awesome.
Adam, the hero, even mentions this in the book, as if the author knew some picky readers were going to scratch their heads. When it's brought up that the mirroring of their lives is very coincidental, he says that had they not met, it wouldn't have been a coincidence, because they wouldn't have known of each other as they went through the same experiences. Eh. A little weak for my liking. Didn't ruin the overall enjoyment of the book, though. (less)
**spoiler alert** The second of Putney's Bride trilogy was shocking for me. The Wild Child was enchanting and entertaining. This book was surprisingly...more**spoiler alert** The second of Putney's Bride trilogy was shocking for me. The Wild Child was enchanting and entertaining. This book was surprisingly dark in subject matter and seemed to have lost some of the magic that was inherent to Wild Child. If you've read Deerskin by Robin McKinley, it's along the same lines.
Even though the hero is essentially forced to rape the heroine in order to win her from her captors, he is disgusted with himself and his action. He does it with her permission, and insists they marry once she is freed from her prison. It was fascinating to watch them get past this awful moment in their relationship, which had started so well due to their conversations. I want to read this book again so I can attempt to figure out how Putney was able to make me believe that the hero/heroine were able to get past the rape and have a healthy intellectual/emotional/sexual relationship. (less)
As always, an entertaining read from Mary Jo Putney. This book was so informative! I learned so much about Chinese culture from the 1830s that corresp...moreAs always, an entertaining read from Mary Jo Putney. This book was so informative! I learned so much about Chinese culture from the 1830s that corresponded with what I knew already. I've never read a book that explained the core of tai chi so well, and I loved that the heroine, because of her dual upbringing in both Chinese tradition and Scottish, had no problem with pre-marital sex so I didn't have to slog through the usual "Oh no, I shouldn't be doing this, but it feels so good!" that we usually get in romance novels.
I felt the hero/heroine were a great match. I loved that they got to know each other via traveling together. Rather than falling for the typical hero and heroine hating each other and then growing to love each other, they were two people brought together by circumstance and finding a connection.
Read this book if you're looking for a story that is entertaining, informative, exciting, and yes, even a little thrilling in bed.(less)
If you've seen the musical Annie, you basically know the plot of this book. However, I like Annie, and I liked this book because of the heroine, Pamel...moreIf you've seen the musical Annie, you basically know the plot of this book. However, I like Annie, and I liked this book because of the heroine, Pamela Lockhart. She values her mind before her looks, and in order to obtain a governess position that will secure her future finances, she dresses and wears make-up to look like an old maid.
The banter between Pamela and Devon, the hero, was entertaining and interesting, actually, because for once the hero didn't have looks to distract him. In fact, he forgets the way she looks because she's so engaged his mind! Just my kind of romance. Read this for fun banter, but don't expect a lot from the reasons why these two have trouble coming together. That was the weakest part of the story for me. Still, an enjoyable read.(less)
**spoiler alert** This was an entertaining read, but I felt like the modern sensibilities of the author went a little too far in the main characters,...more**spoiler alert** This was an entertaining read, but I felt like the modern sensibilities of the author went a little too far in the main characters, who were very much not of their era.
On the one hand, this book made me laugh, there were some touching moments from the heroine's perspective, the hero suffers bad injuries in the line of duty, the action scenes were well-paced, the love scenes were scintillating... all of this was compelling enough to keep me reading to find out what happened.
On the other hand, the note from the author at the beginning of the book had me looking forward to the heroine using her powers, which she does almost never. When using her powers, reactions from the hero and his friend are so nonchalant that I was shocked. They just accepted it, with very little questioning! I felt there would have been something from men who spied on behalf of the queen. Fear, worry, wondering what all she could do, wondering how much influence she had over them, over their families, over the investigation...
This was before the Salem Witch Trials, yet after the witch trials of the continent. I mean, even people today will raise an eyebrow if they hear someone say, "I'm Wiccan." So unfortunately, I have to give this book three stars rather than four. Love conquers a lot, but in this case, it was just a little too easy.(less)
Once again, another fun read from Candace Camp. I love her stories because her heroines aren't helpless; they tend to be a little older, a little caus...moreOnce again, another fun read from Candace Camp. I love her stories because her heroines aren't helpless; they tend to be a little older, a little caustic, with lots of spunk. Irene is no exception: she won't get married because she doesn't want to "belong" to a man the way her mother belonged to her abusive father.
The hero in this book is great, too. Gideon doesn't really want to get married, he's doing it because he's expected to. The twist on the familiar trope is that he's marrying so his children, should he have any, will have more legitimacy, being that he has been the lost heir for the last, oh, twenty years. When Gideon meets Irene, of course they argue. He's rich because he worked his way up from being an abandoned child in London. She's rich because she was born to it. Their sensibilities, however, are very similar, even if their modes of expressing them are different.
Read this book for a hero who looks bad but isn't, a heroine who tells herself she won't ever marry, and a little mystery about how the hero came to be the lost heir returned.(less)
I really enjoyed this book! I received a free copy ages ago with the promise to review it, and I had the chance on a cross-country flight. I finished...moreI really enjoyed this book! I received a free copy ages ago with the promise to review it, and I had the chance on a cross-country flight. I finished this novella in the time it took to fly from Ohio to California, and I was hooked from the first page where the main character doesn't know who he is. Nolan impressed me with her characterization; this book didn't read like a novella and I felt I understood who the characters were, their relationships and history very well.
Next time I'm in the mood for a paranormal, Nolan is at the top of the list.(less)
The first pages drew me in with the imagery of a woman crying out, struggling to get away from some dark force. It is a prophetic dream that drew me i...moreThe first pages drew me in with the imagery of a woman crying out, struggling to get away from some dark force. It is a prophetic dream that drew me into this delicious gothic romance, so much so that I stayed up into the wee hours of the morning. While reading in those early hours, I got a text from a friend. I was so wrapped up in this book that my phone vibrating made me scream, literally. I dropped the book, my pulse was racing, and I looked about wildly, trying to find what had scared me so much.
I hadn't expected to be so engaged with this book, so thrilled and scared. I loved every minute of it.(less)
While I managed to finish this book, I just didn't enjoy it as much as The Bargain. The hero and heroine are trying to hurt each other even as they fi...moreWhile I managed to finish this book, I just didn't enjoy it as much as The Bargain. The hero and heroine are trying to hurt each other even as they fight their feelings for each other and struggle with the memories of their past romance. The way they hurt one another in the past was a series of traumatic events for the heroine that I just couldn't believe anyone would be able to get past it. I wanted to like this book more, but as it stands, it just gets an "OK" from me.
Maggie glanced away, not wanting to deal with what lay beneath [Robin's] teasing tone. "Before I return to England, I'm going to acquire an entire wardrobe of gowns that come up to my throat. It's tedious to have men always talking to one's chest rather than one's face."(less)
I wanted to like this book more than I did. The story began slowly, and the description sometimes got in the way of the plot, I felt. At its heart, th...moreI wanted to like this book more than I did. The story began slowly, and the description sometimes got in the way of the plot, I felt. At its heart, this is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast. We have the beast, Jason Cameron, a elemental wizard who got too big for his britches and tried a spell he didn't know how to uncast. We have the beauty, an heiress who was working on her PhD when her father died and left her penniless.
Though the story moved slowly, I kept reading it because I loved Rosalind, the heroine. She doesn't know her own beauty, relies on her glasses to see anything, and is much smarter than she already looks. She is intrepid, clever, insightful, and sensitive. She's also bossy, which I love.
A decent retelling of a familiar and well-loved fairy tale, I wish there had been a little less world-building and a little more relationship-building.(less)
I devoured this book. The chemistry between Emma and Nicholas was charming, scintillating, and sexy. Emma has the predicament of having to teach her s...moreI devoured this book. The chemistry between Emma and Nicholas was charming, scintillating, and sexy. Emma has the predicament of having to teach her students about their wifely duties. As a young widow, one might assume she knows a thing or two about this. And no doubt she would, if she were the widow she claimed to be. Enter the hero, Lord Nicholas "Bedchambers" Chambers, the lord next door with a penchant for artistry. Emma turns to him for instruction and guidance, getting that and more.
This was a great debut book. I feel as if Jane Eyre had been written today, it would have been this book. We have a spunky heroine who is determined to do right by her students, and a brooding lord who, while not having a crazy wife locked in the attic, has a few secrets of his own.
I think what I loved most about this book was that even though Nicholas could have completely taken advantage of Emma, he always gave her a choice. Now, he could have been a true gentleman and not required Emma to pose for him, but then the story wouldn't have been nearly as interesting. Talk about foreplay... the slow undressing of the heroine for months built up the tension between them like crazy. (less)