Tricks of the Trade is a fast-paced and entertaining novelette. Written in such a casual manner, it reads so conversationally and smoothly that you doTricks of the Trade is a fast-paced and entertaining novelette. Written in such a casual manner, it reads so conversationally and smoothly that you don't realize how far into the book you are until you read the words "The End." Spencer's short erotica story dives right into the heart of things with a glance, some flirty words, and a nice set of large breasts right in the middle of a home improvement store.
Will is a plumber by trade, a youngster in his 20's, not quite satisfied in the bedroom department. When a 40-something woman shows him the attention he's been craving, he doesn't expect to help her fix an emergency plumbing situation, and then end up in her bed. What was a casual stroll through the store turned into an intense sexual encounter with a mature woman; one that left him satisfied and craving that type of intimacy.
His encounter with Mitzi has him reconsidering the women that he pursues. A reconsideration that he puts to use later that evening. Enter Lucy, a shy, Asian American, that is blossoming under the tutelage of one Mitzi Callahan. Will and Lucy connect and a perfect HEA is born.
I love Spencer's writing style. I was pulled into the story from the very beginning and even though I should have been doing homework for both of my college classes, I decided reading Tricks of the Trade sounded like a whole lot more fun. I was right - it was!! A steamy story, yes, but there is a plot, a nice budding romance between two people with a near 20 year age gap. Who says older women aren't as much fun in the bedroom, under the sink, or in a spa??!!
Review copy courtesy of the author, at no cost, in exchange for an honest review....more
Cynthia (Starr) Starling is the boss of everyone's nightmares. She's hard-nosed, no-nonsense, and completely about the job ~~ and she expects her emplCynthia (Starr) Starling is the boss of everyone's nightmares. She's hard-nosed, no-nonsense, and completely about the job ~~ and she expects her employees to be the same way. After an undercover story for the magazine becomes an epic failure and she loses an employee to the enemy, she comes to one conclusion:
The only way that her team will have the February Valentine's issue out on time is by working during the break between Christmas and New Year's.
Starr is a hater of all things Christmas and dreads it every year since she also shares that date with her birthday. Only this year, the Powers That Be, have decided to intervene and show her exactly what fate she's headed for if she stays the course she's on right now.
Book 2 in the Suddenly Cinderella series by Hope Tarr, A Cinderella Christmas Carol, takes the classic Christmas movie, A Christmas Carol, and gives it a contemporary twist. Starr is the editor of a prestigious magazine with the attitude to match. Friendless and virtually alone (unless you count her cat), she spends most of her down time away from the magazine alone. When she's asked to a pre-holiday gathering by hot teammate, Matt Landry, to fight the attraction she has for him she snaps and says no.
After she drifts off to sleep, Starr awakens to find the shimmery image of Matt standing before, stating he's the ghost of Christmas Past, Present, and Future. Disbelieving at first, Starr scoffs....until they get to the location of the past Christmas meant for her to revisit. Her present and future Christmases open her eyes to the world around her that she's ignored. Now, it's up to her to decide which path to take for the future she wants the most.
A Cinderella Christmas Story is a fast-paced, entertaining novella. It's really too bad a ghost of Christmas Past, Present, and Future doesn't actually exist --- there are truly some people who need a reality check. Starr certainly received hers. Hope Tarr crafted a very enjoyable holiday novella. She took a classic holiday tale and creatively updated it to a more modern and contemporary story....more
Being haunted by two separate ghosts, Moira finds herself committed to a local mental health facility when of them decides to force her into violence.Being haunted by two separate ghosts, Moira finds herself committed to a local mental health facility when of them decides to force her into violence. While there, the reader gets a fully developed explanation of who Moira is, who is attached to her, and why they are there. Moira's upbringing is less than ideal; until she and her brother were placed in the last foster home, there were problems aplenty. There is so much pain and tragedy and the author does an exceptional job of making them so realistic in the novel.
The whole structure of Voices is so different and unique from anything else I've read. I was pulled in from the very beginning from Clarissa's vivid imagery, great writing, and suspense. The character development and world building is executed nicely - not too fast, not too slow and with only the information that the reader truly needs to know.
Moira is a strong character - anyone else in her position may have cracked long ago, not endured as she has. The spirits that plague her have also isolated her. Moira keeps most people at arm's length because getting too close causes issues with some jealous dead people.
Moira's doctor, Richard Cassano, isn't the traditional type that pushes meds on all of this patients because it's easier than actually treating them. There aren't any signs of schizophrenia other than her admittance of hearing a voice or two. Richard must also confront his own demons, so-to-speak, when he realizes that Moira isn't just hearing voices; she's hearing the voices of real ghosts who happen to be attached to her. With his belief system tested, Richard must now dive deep into her past and figure out who is attached to Moira and why.
Adam Blackwood is a regular at the facility. He also sees and hears ghosts but his brother keeps having him committed against his will. Adam sees the entities attached to Moira and, after a time, begins instructing her on how to keep the spirits at bay. He's snarky and smart-mouthed; his coping mechanism for the hand he was dealt.
The connections that are built between Moira & Adam and Moira & Dr. Cassano will keep the reader guessing as to whom will be the knight in shining armor - if there even is one. With the malevolent entity attempting to control Moira, there may not be anything anyone can to do save her - especially when the evil grows out of control.
An excellent book, Voices will keep the reader up at night or from being productive at anything until the very last page is read. I highly recommend Voices to anyone who loves the paranormal combined with psychological ties, and rounded off nicely with suspense. You won't be disappointed!
Review copy courtesy of the author, at no cost, in exchange for an honest review....more
Meredith Anderson is the sister of Melanie Simms, the heroine from Book 1. Mer fled her controlling father, mouse of a mother, and psycho ex-fiance inMeredith Anderson is the sister of Melanie Simms, the heroine from Book 1. Mer fled her controlling father, mouse of a mother, and psycho ex-fiance in hopes of rekindling her relationship with Mel. Wanting to turn a new leaf, Mer also decides that a change is in order. Or maybe she just wants to catch the eye of sexy rancher Gage....
Gage thinks that Meredith is completely out of his league but his primal instincts are screaming for her. When she proposes a no-strings attached fling, every warning bell in his head starts blaring. He knows that just one night with her won't be enough, but he humors her just the same. When things develop that are beyond what either could have possibly imagined, Mer's past catches up with her and threatens to destroy anything that could be between them.
The strong chemistry between Meredith and Gage is undeniable. His instinctively protective nature where Meredith is concerned is both a shock and comfortably right in his world - which is a problem. Neither thinks the other wants a relationship, besides, Gage is leaving Tall Pines as soon as possible. There isn't room in his plans for Meredith.
When those from Meredith's past threaten those in her life now, she must make a choice, or rather a sacrifice, and do what's best for those she loves. Little does Meredith know that Gage has some aces up his sleeves. He's not going to let his past and the unscrupulous people in her life destroy everything he has and everything he wants.
Meredith and Gage are a totally cute couple, whether they want to admit or not. I adore their interactions. Both characters are well developed and written realistically. Don't make the mistake in thinking that Rescued by the Rancher is all canoodling and sweet romance though. Victoria James knows how to infuse drama into her passion-filled contemporary romances. Things aren't easy for her characters and adversity crosses their paths more than once.
After years of being controlled, Meredith is learning how to be a fierce and independent woman. She's learning to stand up for herself and stand on her own. She's a wonderful character that many people with be able to relate to and love. Gage has been the man of her dreams since Book 1 and how she goes about trying to get him into her bed is comical.
Gage, on the other hand, is doing whatever it takes to stay away from Meredith. He wants her....BADLY....but is gun shy. She deserves so much more than a romp between the sheets and Gage is just not sure he's capable of anything else. The road that has been written for them take some wildly fantastical and deeply emotional turns.
I have yet to read a book by Victoria James that I've given less than a 5 star rating. I love her novels and the way she writes. Her characters, the plot, themes, drama, and passion pull the reader in and keeps them engaged. There is true emotion that can be felt by those readers that become one with the books they read. (I still re-read The Best Man's Baby as often as I can). I am able to get lost in the novels and put myself right into the middle of them. I feel for the characters and drawing on my emotions is what makes a book worth 5 stars for me. If I hurt with them, cry with/for them, laugh, or get angry, then the author did a fantastic job and has written the perfect book - or in the case of Victoria...books, for me.
Review copy courtesy of the author, at no cost, in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts about this book are my own....more
Nathan and his best friend, James, take jobs at a new rail yard hoping to escape their homes and build their lives the way they want - without the intNathan and his best friend, James, take jobs at a new rail yard hoping to escape their homes and build their lives the way they want - without the interference of parents. Both acclimate to their surroundings and attempt to make friends with those that share their sleeping quarters. Nathan didn't expect to meet the man of his dreams - the man he didn't even know he was looking for. Alex stirs up emotions that are alien to Nathan but yet, comfortable at the same time. The only problem is that what Alex and Nathan feel for one another is not something that can be shown out in the open. Painful memories from Nathan's childhood threaten to tear them apart, as the relationship between Alex and Nathan intensifies; yet they manage to figure things out.
Just as Nathan and Alex are preparing for a life of forever, everything shatters.
Forbidden by Matthew Freake is a profound telling of true love in the face of adversity. Things were quite different in our world in the 1950's regarding who could love whom in terms of gender and race. Anything out of what the general populace thought was "normal" was despised and considered illegal, and violence was the way of the land - all you have to do is search the internet and you'll find prime examples of the horrific behaviors committed against people who were deemed "different" by others. We've made leaps and bounds in society today but still have a long way to go.
The only real issue I had with Forbidden is that Nathan's feelings were more vibrant than Alex's throughout the entire story. The unequal level almost gave their romance a one-sided feel. Even now, I'm still not sure that Alex loved Nathan as much as Nathan loved him. I truly felt Nathan's love but Alex seemed distant - maybe it's because of the time in history - Alex forced himself to be cool and aloof to avoid "suspicion." This didn't detract from the story, it's just something that I noticed as I was reading along.
Forbidden reads more like a diary than a story. which is a different from anything else I've read. The way that Matthew wrote the story gives it a realistic and believable quality that is so important to me. I felt the uncertainty, the joy, the pain, and ultimately, the devastation.
Review copy courtesy of the publisher, at no cost, in exchange for an honest review....more