For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/ydz8AK
Holy Wow! I was completely blown awFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/ydz8AK
Holy Wow! I was completely blown away by this debut novel. Sometimes you can be skeptical about a debut author, not having any point of reference, but Ms. Swan had a couple of things going for her before I ever cracked the cover. First, she understands the draw of a fabulous cover. I mean look at that body! The man is frickin fantastic. Makes you want to pet the pretty. *stops to pet the pretty* Okay! *coughs* and … Second, I have been following Ms. Swan on Twitter for quite some time as well as periodically stalking her blog. This all before I knew she had a book coming out. Her blog is very entertaining. She engages her guests and asks fun questions. And she clearly knows a lot about the business. I did have a nagging inkling of doubt when I started reading, wondering if I had worked myself up into a frenzy with my excitement to read it, effectively sabotaging the book and not getting quite what I wanted from it. I am delighted to report that working myself up was only a portion of the thrill I experienced from this book.
I don’t think I had realized it was a romantic suspense prior to the read. I mean I understood that it had conflict that had to be sorted out, but that doesn’t always add up to suspense. But boy did this book have suspense. I absolutely fell in love with both main characters and have an overwhelming urge to read about the fabulous supporting characters. I was engaged from the first page and the book never let me go until it ended. My only regret was that it did end. I found myself frequently looking at how much was left to read, knowing I was nearing the final pages, and wishing more pages would magically appear.
Teague – love that name, by the way – is not what he first seems. In fact, he couldn’t be anything further from his first impressions. I thoroughly enjoyed how Ms. Swan only let us in on his true background in bits and pieces. She didn’t lay it all out there and immediately flip the reader’s mind, she let the reader gradually reassess just exactly who this man was much in the same way Alyssa did. Alyssa is constantly grappling for the right thread of truth to cling to throughout her entire “ordeal” with Teague. I say ordeal for lack of a better word, but please don’t misunderstand. There are some high points within this ordeal. She makes an immediate judgment call about Teague’s character, which seems pretty accurate given the circumstances. And who could blame her? But as the hours tick by (the book takes place in the span of a few days), she begins to war within herself. Is Teague who he seems to be, or it there a real human being somewhere within; a human being she is drawn to despite trying desperately not to acknowledge such a longing. As the deception unfold – and there is a whole lot of deception, Yo! – Teague and Alyssa’s roles dramatically switch from the first couple of chapters. And their sexual chemistry? Holy hotness Batman! Ms. Swan knocked it out of the park by allowing the sexual tension to build to a blazing desire, making their surrender to each other that much better.
I will say that as much as was revealed, there is also much left undiscovered. Revelations sure to be addressed in the next book, Blaze, which will be Luke and Keira’s story. I have to say I was pretty sure these two would be the next couple explored and I am fervently looking forward to reading it. Blaze is due for release in October. But I also have a hunger for Mitch’s story as well. Mitch is … intriguing … would probably be the best word to describe him. I get the impression he exists in one realm and operates in an entirely different one. I truly hope he will be the story that will be book 3! But I digress …
My only complaint within this book is the lack of background between Jason Vasser and Jocelyn. I understand that this was not their story, but enough was hinted at that there was a story at one time. A story, I gather, that did not translate to the same ending for both parties with Vasser’s obvious remaining fantastical idea of he and Jocelyn together and Jocelyn’s apparent lack of interest. But I also wonder what occurred that made Jocelyn such a cold-hearted bitch. She clearly has an ax to grind. The question remains whether the ax is hers personally, or simply her carrying out the best interests of the Senator. I have a feeling Jocelyn will be revisited in some way in the following book(s), though I am not sure in what capacity. I do have one idea though … *zips lips* We’ll see whether I am right or not in the future.
Nominal complaint aside, Ms. Swan is an author to watch. With a debut like this, I have high hopes for her future releases. She clearly has a gift in writing. Overall, Fever is a fast-paced, super sexy, extremely suspenseful, engaging story. I was beyond satisfied with this read and look forward to many more in the future. Blaze is already on my TBR list! My recommendation? Buy! This! Book! You will not be disappointed.
(Uncorrected proof provided by Kensington for review.)...more
Holy cow! What a book to come back to! I have been on a bit of a hiatus and chose to read Ms. York’s book firsFirst posted on Reader's Edyn (blogspot)
Holy cow! What a book to come back to! I have been on a bit of a hiatus and chose to read Ms. York’s book first. Having read her stories before and knowing jut how great her stories are, I had high expectations. Expectations well delivered on once again. If you haven’t experienced Ms. York before, I hope you will consider giving her a try. REBOUND is a novella so would be a great way to get a taste of Ms. York’s writing style without having to invest time into a full length novel. And what is great is that this novella is the first in a new series: Tryst Island Erotic Romance. If you enjoy what you experience, more will be soon to follow.
A little about the characters. Kristi has just walked in on her boyfriend of three years and another woman; one of her waitresses in the storage room of her very own business to be exact. But the romance had fizzled out a long time ago, so pissed but not entirely surprised, she has no one to blame but herself for staying in the relationship. Wounded, she heads off to Tryst Island to collect herself. A getaway of sorts, owned by friends, she and several college friends periodically make their way to the retreat in an effort to detox from everyday life and enjoy themselves. But Kristi quickly encounters a snag when she realizes that Cam is one of the house guests. Cameron Jackson. The love of her life since college. Well, maybe not love exactly, but lust for sure. Problem is that Kristi does not believe she is Cam’s type. Her full-bodied, curvy figure is not what Cam usually goes for. So on the heels of her break-up, she will also have to endure close contact with the man she has always desired but will never have.
Cameron too has come to the island to move forward following a recent break-up with his longtime girlfriend. No one is displeased with the split; never really accepting his snotty ex anyway. But Cam also has other ideas on moving forward for this trip. One woman has occupied his thoughts and fantasies for some time. If Cam has anything to say about it, this trip will be the catalyst to making some of those fantasies come true. Once he recognizes that opportunity is upon him, he accepts that it is now or never. Or the first time, the two are here unattached and nothing will deter Cam from his sensual assault on Kristi’s senses.
These two characters were a lot of fun to get to know. Cam and Kristi are easily likeable and I felt that their stories and actions were plausible. Both were convincing and in need of some happiness. I always enjoy the two main characters that secretly pine for one another and later discover that those feelings are mutually shared. I appreciate Kristi’s sense of loyalty to family when the relationship seems to prove to be too much for her sister. Equally endearing is Cam’s immediate protective instinct over Kristi. Slightly barbaric given that their relationship is in its infancy, but what woman doesn’t swoon over the alpha personality who stakes his claim?
Also enjoyable were the secondary characters in the house. York has brought in an entertaining supporting cast of characters, each with their own wounds to lick. I was a bit surprised to discover that the two we found out the most information about are not the main characters of book two. But my hunch is that those two particular characters will self-induce their long road to an HEA and will likely be the last book in the series. But I digress.
York has once again crafted an entertaining read packed full of crazy hot sex and relatable characters that you can’t help but want to find out more about. True to form, Ms. York has successfully intertwined her talent for snark within this cast of characters. Her stories continue to be sexy, witty, and engrossing. Do yourself a favor and experience the tales of this talented author. She is guaranteed to satisfy.
(ARC eBook copy provided by author in exchange for an honest review.)...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn: http://bit.ly/ysLhap
Review: As you all may have noticed, I have beFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn: http://bit.ly/ysLhap
Review: As you all may have noticed, I have been on a historical romance kick lately. I love HR! Started with HR, will always go back to HR. It is my favorite of all genres. But what I have noticed most about the recent HR reads I have been rabidly reading through is that I have very much enjoyed them all. I mean, seriously. When reading multiple books, you would expect to find something that you don’t exactly swoon over. Most especially because many of the authors I have read lately are new-to-me. But I have absolutely loved them. And what is more? Many of these authors are showcasing their debut novels. Yup. You read that right. DEBUT! Well, I am here to say, the fabulous debut author Heather Snow has got what it takes!
Geoffrey is in a pickle. A returned war hero, he has witnessed the harsh realities of life after war. The soldiers frequently return to nothing and consequently end up begging on the street just to survive after putting their lives on the line for the country that has failed to acknowledge their bravery. Sure, people call them heroes, but hero status does not put food on the table of the underprivileged. Geoffrey aims to change that and with his position in Parliament, he is fast approaching the clout to push his dreams into reality. Except his mother has other plans and has every intention of seeing him settle down and get down to fulfilling his responsibility of providing an heir. Now he is trapped at his own house party he did NOT plan with a bunch of scheming potential wives and their meddling mothers. What is worse, he is completely exasperated by the fair Liliana, which quickly blossoms into a healthy dose of lust. And Geoffrey is trying desperately not to succumb to his baser instincts.
Liliana has ulterior motives - quite a few of them actually – for finagling her aunt into securing her acceptance to the Earl’s house party. The primary reason, to discover the possible individual guilty of murdering her father. She knows someone within the Earl’s home is responsible and she has to start with the Earl himself. But Liliana is playing a dangerous game. First, she has lied to her Aunt, acting as if she would like to try and snag the Earl for her own when all she really wants to do is continue her life’s work as a scientist. Then there is the matter of Geoffrey. Liliana is in no way seeking a husband. After all, they tend to dictate to their wives, and don’t generally support those who opt to participate in professions that refuse to accept women. She is not going to give up her passion for the sake of something undesirable like marriage and family. Except the Earl is fast becoming more and more desirable. And Liliana is finding it near impossible to ignore the longing he evokes within her. As their relationship grows, Liliana becomes the one in the pickle. Does she give up the search for her father’s killer and attempt a future with Geoffrey, or does she confess all and pray he does not cast her aside?
I. Loved. This. Book. Ms. Snow shoots outside of the box in creating her characters and achieves magical results. Geoffrey is not what one expects of the higher class. He is determined to help those less fortunate, especially his fellow soldiers, and will use whatever influence he can to see his dream fulfilled. Liliana is no less unconventional. In her bid to become a recognized member within the scientific realm – a dominion that staunchly refuses to allow women a place within, despite her brilliance, she becomes more of an outcast than anything. She is obviously all wrong for an Earl with political ties, but that, oftentimes, makes her absolutely perfect as his match. And of course, both are opposed to being forced into conforming like the rest of their peers, so both have to overcome the protective walls resurrected before a chance at happiness is given the slightest flicker of a possibility. I love that Liliana is strong and capable, while obviously unaware of an obvious need for love an acceptance she tried hard to oppress.
Adding to the splendor of this story is intelligence and wit mixed with just the right amount of sarcasm. And the intellect demonstrated by both Liliana and Geoffrey is not overdone. The scientific facts, for example are kept to a level that allows enhancement of the story while maintaining the readers attention. The wit and sarcasm is utterly charming. One of my favorite paragraphs is Geoffrey speaking to his horse while thinking other thoughts to himself about Liliana, who is devastating his senses in every way possible by this time. He found a spot to rest the horses away from the crab apple trees. Grin nudged him in protest. “Much too much temptation over there,” Geoffrey mumbled, as much to himself as to the horse. “You, my friend, have an appalling lack of self-control.” As does your master. “And I have no desire” – to find myself married to a woman completely wrong for me – “to nurse a sick horse all the way home,” he said, patting Grin on the rump.
Throw in the bits of mystery and danger and you have the formula for this fresh, delightful novel. And … did I mention that the cover of this book has a quote from Julie Garwood? Julie. Garwood. People. I mean seriously. What more of an endorsement do you need? I can say for sure that I will be keeping an eye on Ms. Snow as I am confident she is an author to watch. Sweet Enemy is also part of a series: Veiled Seduction. Happily, I have discovered that an intriguing secondary character from the book, Aveline, will get his story in book 2, Sweet Deception, due out in August of this year. The reader is offered a glimpse into Aveline, but not near enough. My curiosity strings have been well and truly plucked. You can bet I will be reading that book for sure. Historical romance lovers are sure to enjoy Ms. Snow and her charming debut.
(ARC Paperback received from author for review.)...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlights, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/wp5q0u
Oh Sam! Sam, Sam, Sam! Where can IFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlights, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/wp5q0u
Oh Sam! Sam, Sam, Sam! Where can I find my very own demon? Where, I ask! Dang it! Now I have a crush on not one, but ALL FOUR of the Black Magic men! It all started with Griffin, a tiger shifter. Of course, I had to love Logan, a werewolf. Then I got my pants charmed off my Max, my very first shark shifter. And now I am smitten with Samael, a beyond hawt demon with a conscience. *fans self* And I am seriously considering reading the whole series again simply because I love them so! *nods* (Side note – I actually just did practically read all of That Voodoo You Do as I was going back over Sam’s first appearances. Ironically right after saying I was going to re-read the series. As in just. right. now. Man do I need me a Bengal tiger shifter familiar!)
So we briefly met Sam in book 1of That Old Black Magic series, That Voodoo You Do. Sam was the instrumental “soul” who kept popping up unexpectedly and giving Jemma little hints here and there, ultimately aiding in her victory; and squelching the approaching zombie apocalypse. Yay, Sam! We also had mention of Marabella in book 1 and then met her briefly in book 2, The Seven Year Witch. I believe she was mentioned in book 3, Maximum Witch, though her part was insignificant to the main characters of that story. And finally, in Getting Familiar With Your Demon, Marabella gets to divest herself of that dang curse of virginity with the help of the hunky demon Samael.
Sam helps save the day – and the world from, you know, Zombies eating everyone’s brains and stuff. Cut to … a bit of time has lapsed; about six months. Sam has been punished, tortured, and made completely miserable by whips and blaring off-key disco music no less. The poor, poor demon! And then this sneaky little spiotch, Priscilla, secretary to the Demon King, prances in holding his contract. You see, she is up to no good and Sam is the key to carrying out her warped plans. But Sam has a plan of his own. He’s going to break his soul collector seal and he is going to use Marabella to get it done. In a pleasurable way of course. Easy peasy, right? Whatevs! Nothing ever goes off exactly as planned. Pfft! What kind of book would that be? So Sam-O ends up with a conscience, feelings toward Marabella he has zero wish to dig into, and – oh, yeah – despite breaking his seal, he is probably going to end up bonded to someone else again anyway. Way to get that monkey off your back, Sam.
Marabella, on the other hand, falls fast for the forbidden demon. Hey! Don’t we all go for the forbidden ones? Mark ‘em with forbidden and we gravitate straight to ‘em. Yes? I know! Well, Samael is no different. Pair her overwhelming lust with this frickin curse that dooms her to virginity for life and Sam becomes more and more tempting as the minutes tick by. One word. Devastating! Because Sam has the potential to completely devastate Marabella in every conceivable way; both good and bad. But Marabella knows her restrictions and limitations. Much of what Sam is asking of her is going against the very fiber of her existence. She has to make a decision – take a stand, or lose Sam, and do nothing to save humanity from imminent demise at Priscilla’s whakado clutches. No matter that Sam doesn’t want her in the same way. He could come around … maybe.
I. Lurved. This. Book! Ms. Redford just keeps getting better. The sex is amazing between the characters, their struggles to get to an HEA are exciting and entertaining, and her writing style is infectious. Infectious in a way that makes me want to find the next book, like, yesterday. Her voice is consistent in this series and I never fail to enjoy my time spent with the characters. I absolutely love her humor as well. Some of the lines in the book are phenomenal! One of my favorites is “waxing poetic”. Come to think of it, I may have used that a few times since I first read it. The other that I loved was after Sam and Marabella hook up, Sam notices that she’s altered the décor somewhat. It goes like this:
Ooh, he was so damn irritating. Which only made it all the more frustrating when she caught herself ogling his ass as he sauntered toward the bathroom. Her grumble leaking free, she turned and stormed down to the store. She managed to distract herself from Sam’s presence for a whopping ten minutes while she finished unpacking and pricing the remaining suncatchers. Her composure slipped when he strode into the small room where their illicit rendezvous had occurred. His gaze immediately trekked to the brass daybed. “You changed the pillows.” “And the sheets and comforter. I couldn’t exactly leave it after…” His hot, smoldering scrutiny returned to her. “After we burned the sheets fantastic?” She blushed. “I wasn’t going to phrase it that way, but yes.” Sam’s focus dipped to her mouth and lingered there for an endless moment. “How were you going to phrase it, sweet Bella?” he asked in that silky-smooth tone that provoked tingles in inappropriate places. “The way I see it, you can’t get more accurate than that.”
I also liked that Ms. Redford veered slightly off track with this book. In the previous novels, the main characters acknowledge their desires and feelings. Maybe not directly to each other, but they seem to place obstacles in front of their possible relationships purposely as an excuse to deny themselves. This time, the obstacles are very much there. And while Marabella knows she has fallen, Sam refuses to acknowledge anything deeper than intoxicating lust. No judgment. He is a demon after all. Happily-ever-after doesn’t exist in his world. The issue this time is not whether they will acknowledge their own imperfections that block the way to happiness as with the previous books; but whether they are willing to buck the system in its entirety, the world they embrace and accept and have never questioned until now, for a chance to be together which could ultimately crumble anyway.
I found this book entertaining, beyond stimulating, and an altogether enjoyable read. Ms. Redford keeps it coming with the fourth installment of the That Old Black Magic series, Getting Familiar With Your Demon. I eagerly await the next installment. And although this is book four in the series, it can be read as a stand-alone. The series is absolutely enhanced reading in order, but not necessary for this particular book. Readers of paranormal romance with inclinations toward snark and sizzling smut are sure to enjoy this book.
(Digital ARC copy provided by author for review.)...more
“When people come to the "flower shop, you know what they want to say to each other? Two things: I’m sorry, and I love you. That’s it.Favorite Quote:
“When people come to the "flower shop, you know what they want to say to each other? Two things: I’m sorry, and I love you. That’s it. They say it different ways and with different words, but it comes down to the same thing each time. So I think that’s what it means to be human. I think it means taking chances and risking getting hurt. I think it means loving and forgiving.”
Radiant Desire is the first of Inara Scott’s books that I have had the pleasure to read. I was initially captivated by the fan-damn-tastic cover of the book. Admittedly, I am a sucker for amazing covers. **grins**
This book was an absolute pleasure and I could not put it down. It kept me up into the wee hours of the night when I should have been sleeping. I was captivated from the start of this amazing novel. I have always loved fantasy books. Each allows us to become immersed in characters that we would otherwise leave in the recesses of our minds, not really giving overmuch thought to. I have always loved the idea of faeries; especially after reading Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream. The playfulness and meddling of the celestial beings was extremely entertaining. Scott successfully brings similar qualities to some of the characters in this book.
I enjoyed that the characters each went through a process to find their happiness. Not only did Caia and Garrett have to work through misguided assumptions that hindered the ability for growth and acceptance, the secondary and supporting characters also went through their own eye-opening experiences at differing times throughout the story. This story has depth beyond the initial feelings generally conveyed in novels. Ideals that some had lived by were challenged. Beliefs were tested. Ultimately each individual had to personally decide their own path: a decision that weighted heavily with happiness and consequences lurking regardless of the chosen course.
What I didn’t like, though somewhat trivial in comparison to the rest of the story, is the lack of closure for Portia. I felt there could have been a bit more added to the Aiden revelation. I appreciated her description in the final chapter, but with the disclosure of her motivation, I felt as if she could have been afforded just a smidge more happiness.
I am assuming that A Handmaid’s Seduction will likely have subsequent installments with each of Caia’s sisters getting their own story. The possibilities are endless with unfulfilled contracts yet to be paid. But you will have to read the story to fully understand the implications of such a statement. Naturally, the idea of a series is just a supposition based on the contents of the final chapter, but an assumption I would dearly love to see manifest. Scott has a talent for spellbinding her readers and keeping them hooked within a story that flows from beginning to end. My time was well spent with Radiant Desire.
(ARC e-book received from @inarascott for review) ...more
Please see full review posted on Reader's Edyn. For excerpts and dialogue highlights, visit: http://bit.ly/y8gBhn
Wow! I absolutely loved this boPlease see full review posted on Reader's Edyn. For excerpts and dialogue highlights, visit: http://bit.ly/y8gBhn
Wow! I absolutely loved this book! I saw it a few months ago and about drooled over the cover. It is fantastic! Exactly the type of cover that pulls me in. As soon as I saw it, I knew I had to read it. And lucky me, I was given the opportunity to review this book. I can honestly say that Manda Collins has what it takes to become a well-known go-to historical romance author. You know what I mean. The authors that, as soon as you see their name, you are snatching that book off the shelf? Yeah … that kind of author.
I honestly can’t think of anything this book doesn’t have. First there is Cecily, a wallflower. A group of three women, actually, nicknamed The Ugly Ducklings by their snobbish peers of the ton. She has a lot of spunk, determination, and plenty of wit. Once she sets out to complete her goal of entering the Egyptian Club, she makes her transformation and never looks back. Then we have Lucas, the Duke. He is back from the war, his brother is missing, he has to care for his mother and sister-in-law, he has his brother’s disappearance to get to the bottom to, and he is well and truly distracted by Cecily. She, of course, is like no woman he has ever met. He knows immediately he cannot allow her to marry any of the Egyptian Club twits she is scouting after … and he knows that he will make her his one way or another. But Cecily has been scorned once and will fight to the end to deny the fact that her attraction to Lucas has evolved into something much more precious. The issue is whether or not she is willing to risk her heart once again. But Lucas can be very convincing and utterly charming when he is after something he wants. And he wants Cecily.
I found the characters within the story to be completely believable. It didn’t take long before I was completely immersed within this world and making guesses at whom was behind the evil plots shrouded in mystery. I also very much enjoyed the supporting characters to the point that I am very much looking forward to the telling of their own stories. My only complaint was an area within the wedding scene that confused me. At some point Lucas’s mother is called Lady Michael for about a page, which is not her name. And Clarissa exits the scene, but is back in it about a page later. I read that section a few times to try and figure out what I missed, but I hadn’t. However, this is a Galley copy, which means some typos may exist and will likely be corrected prior to publication. So that said, there was nothing about the story that I disliked. Did I mention the smexy? Yeah, it’s got that too. What I really appreciate about the book is the balance. There seems to be just the right amount of each component. The mystery does not overpower the romance and the romance does not take anything away from the secondary characters, and so on. How To Dance With A Duke is hands down, a beautifully crafted story.
Manda Collins is one to watch! I loved this debut novel and can’t wait to see more from her. Cecily’s wallflower friends are set up within the story to follow this book up with stories of their own. And if I am not mistaken in my assumption, one or two of Lucas’s friends may just be the matched they need to find the happiness they crave. Hang on … Be right back!
Actually, I just checked. Book 2, How To Romance A Rake will be out July 31, 2012 and will allow the readers to experience Juliet and Lord Deveril’s story! And OMG! Another fabulous cover! If you have assumed that I added the next story to my TBR list, you are correct. I look forward to telling you all about the next book when it releases. Until then, enjoy this fabulous debut novel.
(Digital ARC received from publisher via NetGalley for review.)...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/x5InTl
Okay readers. Who here has a fantasFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/x5InTl
Okay readers. Who here has a fantasy actor/actress that you would love to get down and dirty with? Show of hand please … as I suspected. We all have at least one special celebrity that we would be more than happy to engage in nefarious deeds with. No, don’t shake your head no at me! You know you do! Yeah, exactly. Take it one step further. Who ever had, or still has an ideal fantasy involving said celebrity – your chance meeting with this celebrity – the sparks that instantly simmer between the two of you – and the happily ever after. *le sigh* I can tell you I have had a few *coughs* luscious dreams about some pretty hot celebs. *eyes glaze* … Oh! Sorry. Lost myself in a couple of those fantasies.
And who here has a thing for doctors after watching Grey’s Anatomy. Well, any doctor/hospital show. Maybe you got your fix when Chicago Hope was on. Maybe you fantasized about NPH. Hey, no judgment here. Doogie was a cutie patootie. Sweet! I just waxed poetic, like WOAH! Maybe it was ER. Maybe it was Trapper John, M.D. *snort* Okay, so that was a bit of a reach. But my point is that these types of shows have been around for quite some time. Some you have forgotten, others made an impression. For me, it was Grey’s all the way! If you don’t know who McDreamy and McSteamy are, I highly recommend you familiarize yourself. Scoot along to Netflix and get busy. Let us say that “Seriously” is one of the top used words in my house. And the smexy that happens both on duty, off duty, on call – ALL THE TIME – is yumalicious.
Now I know you are all wondering what the heck I am rambling about. Are you lost? *Pfft!* Not my readers! Y’all are crazy smart so you know where I am headed. To set you up for this story of course! Who doesn’t want to read about an actor who plays the part of Dr. Dale – McSteamy in my mind (no people, not Eric Dane today – I am much more partial to the Dane of Charmed fame. Yeah – you know what I’m talking about!) – who has an encounter with an aspiring actress playing an extra on set, which ultimately leads to a chance at that fantastical HEA actually coming true! *waves frantically* I do! I do! So I did. And I really enjoyed myself. This book is not one I would read repeatedly, but it is worth owning just for the ability to occasionally return for a quick and stimulating read.
Maybe I should actually tell you a bit about the story. Jenna (yes, yes, I do picture Lexie when I read the story) is playing an extra on Sexy M.D. when the smoking hot Micah accidentally punches her in the face. Yup. She was Starstruck – both by the hot actor and literally. LMAO! I know. I crack myself up. *clears throat*. But seriously … Micah seeks Jenna out, feeling tremendous guilt at causing her expulsion from set. And Jenna is floored by Micah’s compassion. He’s not just Sexy M.D., or the actor who plays Dr. Dale. He’s Micah the man. So Micah and Jenna start a whirlwind relationship. Along the way they hit a road block. It is Hollywood after all. It can’t be all fluffy bunnies and rainbows. Besides, aren’t romance books so much better when the characters have to recognize their own shortcomings and have to fight their way back from an epic mistake before getting that much desired HEA? EXACTLY! And both Micah and Jenna do – have to fight their way to HEA that is.
As a fan of romance, and huge fan of Grey’s, a woman who secretly reminisces occasionally about that celebrity who got away, and an avid connoisseur of smut – Starstuck fits the bill for me. The book is less than 200 pages and a lot of times this can present a problem for plotlines. Something is oftentimes missing. Heard this before, have you? Not so in this case. The story is fast-paced, with some crazy hot sex scenes, and still manages to pull off character depth. My only regret was when the story ended. ACK! However, I really loved the way everything was wrapped up in the end. A slight of hand you might say – what would you call that when applied to reading? You think one thing at first and then realize the situation is not as you first suspected. Anyone? Anyone? Beuller?
My only issue with this book is the whole condom thing. Yeah, yeah, I’m all for safe sex. And given the background with Hollywood and such, using condoms is probably highly recommended. In one scene, Micah and Jenna are getting all hot and heavy and all of a sudden Micah realizes he’s entered bare. Now, I don’t have a ton of personal experience to say for sure, but I would think that once contact has been made, stopping to run off and fetch a condom is probably not going to be within the realm of possibilities any longer. I don’t mind the whole safe sex approach; is responsible of the authors to include it within the story. And I am actually glad to see it as more of a common writing practice. But too, the books are fantasy. If the characters are so taken with each other that they can’t even make it out the door, then that glimmer of acting responsibly is reaching a bit. That said, the scene was still incredibly hot.
Oh! And did I mention that Ashleigh Raine is a Samhain author? I have had wicked good luck with Samhain authors. Just sayin’. To wrap up this review, I recommend this book as a quick, entertaining read, and circumstances within the story that many of the readers can relate to in a purely “I’ve fantasized about this before” kind of way. And, of course, smutalicious satisfaction. For those of you who like a series, Starstruck is Book 3 in the Hollywood Heat series. You can pick up the digital version of Acting on Impulse (Hollywood Heat Book 1) for only $o.99 right now.
(Digital ARC provided by author for review.)...more
Okay, so I have to provide a disclaimer with this review. I personally know Jen and LisaPlease see full review at Reader's Edyn: http://bit.ly/rMjVsJ
Okay, so I have to provide a disclaimer with this review. I personally know Jen and Lisa who together form the duo known as Ashleigh Raine. I wouldn’t want anyone accusing me of not being honest or disclosing the fact that I know them so there you go. Honesty. That said, I also feel that I can be honest in my review despite the fact that I know them. They would never hold a grudge against me for disliking any part of their stories. So here we go …
I really like this story because it plays on some simple fantasies that, I believe, many women experience. Pshaw! Who am I kidding, men too. I mean who doesn’t dream of a chance meeting with a celebrity and falling in love? Or spending an incredibly mind-blowing night with said celebrity at the very least? *raises hand* I do and y’all know you have at one time or another too. And in fact, this is what the Hollywood Heat series is based on: those fantasies that sometimes come true. Now I am not saying anything against Connor, but I may have slipped my own fantasy celebrity in this story to make it even better. *eyes glaze over* And boy did it work …
*shakes head to clear thoughts* Sorry ‘bout that. *sheepish grin* Anyway, I liked that Sam was a real character: single mom, working full-time, dependent on best friend and parents to help out on occasion – you know, doing the real-life thing. And I liked that Blaina, Sam’s bestie, fits my idea of a best friend. Friends are so hard to come by, in the true sense of the word. To me, Blaina epitomized best friend in the best ways.
As for my dislikes, it’s pretty much my consistent complaint with all short stories. Not enough time spent with the characters, so a lack of character depth that you would normally receive in a full-length novel. I feel like we got beneath the surface of Sam and Connor, but not nearly as much as I would have liked to see. I like the emotional angst and the brooding characters, the conflicting emotions triggered from various sources, seeing the negative blossom into a love to be envious of. Not that I wouldn’t be envious of Sam and Connor, but I do like to see struggle before those three little words make an appearance. I know, I know, but HEA is that much sweeter when the MCs have to work to reach it.
But hey, the book was written as a quick read – a teaser of sorts to whet the appetite, eliciting a want for more Ashleigh Raine. In this, the job was accomplished. This story could easily be read in a couple of hours and would be a terrific way to pass some time. But beware of the location you choose to read it. The smexy scenes border on orgasmic and are sure to leave your … errr … needing a lil something something – if you know what I’m saying. *winks* But hey, don’t take my word for it. Try it yourself. Acting on Impulse is only 99cents on Nook & Kindle. At that price, how can you not buy a copy?
For full review, please visit Reader's Edyn where you can view excerpts and dialogue highlights. http://bit.ly/AvkSot
I am in love with a PirateFor full review, please visit Reader's Edyn where you can view excerpts and dialogue highlights. http://bit.ly/AvkSot
I am in love with a Pirate and his name is Bastien. *le sigh* Is that not one of the best dialogue highlights you have ever read? I KNOW! It is fabulous! I can see the characters in the scene. Their expressions, their playful banter, their smoldering desire for one another. And I felt this way – this engaged – throughout the book in its entirety. This is my first Shana Galen book. I do own a couple of her books already, but have not had a chance to read them yet. *whispers* I’m thinking I will have to change that monumental mistake right quick. *runs to change reading order*
So Raeven is on a mission for vengeance. She has set out to take the life of the infamous pirate, Captain Cutlass. The Pirate has been implicated as the one responsible for the death of her fiancé when their ships tangled with one another on the high seas. Raised on a ship from a young age, Raeven has a bit of an odd upbringing and consequently she fears little. She knows her abilities, but perhaps isn’t so good at knowing where to draw the line and concede. Nor did she except to get knocked off her socks as soon as she came face to face with Bastien (Captain Cutlass).
Bastien is immediately intrigued by this boy child who has challenged him. Did I mention she meets him in a tavern in disguise? You are intrigued, no? So Raeven’s cover is blown fairly quickly, which only intensifies Bastien’s interest in her. His plans include punishing her by making her serve his as his cabin girl. But he doesn’t know Raeven and she has no such intention of complying with him. She makes her escape, but is immediately planning her next encounter with the murdering … breathtaking … underhanded … lust-inducing … well, you get the idea. She’s a bit conflicted within the emotions Bastien inspires.
I enjoyed getting to know both Raeven and Bastien and I liked that they both were unwilling to admit their love for one another. While they eventually admitted it to themselves, they found it difficult to believe that the other would open up to the possibility of being hurt again and consequently kept their deep feelings buried for a time. The secondary characters were also enjoyable. We did not get to know them very far below the surface, which worked out well because it kept the focus on the main characters. But part of me wished we had something to go on with at least one secondary character so that I could look forward to time spent with Bastien and Raven in the future. Unfortunately I don’t see that happening. I can only hope that Ms. Galen has another adventure on the high seas awaiting us somewhere down the road, if even with different characters.
Prepared to be sucked into a world of danger, intrigue, humor, romance, and the thrill of the high seas. It’s swashbuckling! What does that word even mean? I have no idea, but it is fabulous, is in not? It says so much. I just like saying it. Swashbuckling, swashbuckling swashbuckling. You say it too. It makes you smile. *raises brow* Don’t be acting like I’m all crazy and you have no idea what I am speaking of. You know you agree. *nods* But seriously, readers and lovers of historical romance will love and adore Ms. Galen in no time. She easily rivals the writing of Lindsey, one of my all time favorites, and is without-a-doubt a sure read for me. In other words, when I see Galen, I buy. End of story. So what are you waiting for? Hmmmm? Oh! Appologies. *blushes* I appreciate you finishing up the review first. But I am done now. Hurry up and get your own. This is one you will treasure within your collection. Now go! The adventure awaits …
(Advanced uncorrected proof paperback provided by author for review)...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlights, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/yLA6ut
I’d like to begin this review by eFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlights, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/yLA6ut
I’d like to begin this review by explaining why I chose both the excerpt and the dialogue highlight. The excerpt was chosen because it is the catalyst within the story from which there is no return. Once Adrian sets his plans in motion, he has little choice but to see them through. Adrian and Evelyn are madly in love with one another, but both having come from rather exciting backgrounds, they each begin to feel a bit restless and consequently start questioning why they had chosen to marry each other. The excerpt is a terrific example of Adrian’s war within himself. Part of him knows that Evie loves him without a doubt and that they were made for another. But the other part, the part harboring that tiny bit of doubt, is what ultimately propels him to put Evie’s love and loyalty to the test. But there exists an unfair advantage. Adrian has not told Evie about his past life, as it were, yet he knows all about hers. He was, after all, the face-less superior she reported to and had cultivated an innocent flirtation with. But was that flirtation so innocent? And there in lies Adrian’s problem. Does Evie truly love him, or does she still hold feelings for … um … him … in her heart. Evie, of course, has no idea Adrian knows anything at all about her past, nor does she realize Adrian’s role in her former life.
The dialogue highlight I chose because it is one of the many fun, flirtatious scenes within the story. While the question of infidelity between the main characters in no laughing matter – and you all know what I mean – we do not, no how, no way, want to see even a hint of anything screwing with the HEA of our characters – Ms. Alexander crafts a wonderfully romantic story that includes mystery, intrigue, and some entertainingly lighthearted humor between the characters. This dialogue highlight showcases the wonderful relationship between husband and wife. Not to mention how much I appreciate the snark and very obvious love between them. It almost makes Adrian’s plans to seduce his own wife that much more ridiculous. How could that kind of sweet banter not be the result of true love?
As my first read from the talented Ms. Alexander, I can say with confidence that I will be returning to her books. I will say that this story was somewhat predictable. We learn Adrian’s identity very early on, so I do not feel that it is a true spoiler, but even with the predictability, I do not feel that such foresight destroyed the story in the least. Had it not been for the snark and witty interactions between the various characters, I may not have been able to make such a claim. I also found myself invested quite a bit with the relationship developments between Max and Celeste. We are not told their entire story, but are provided enough to know that there is, without a doubt, another installment to this series in the making. I am actually ashamed to have just discovered that I have had book 1 in this series on my wish list for the past few months, but did not make the connection until writing this review. You can safely bet that I will be picking that novella up right quick. Another safe bet is that I will buy any further series books without hesitation.
Those of you who love historical romance with a bit of mystery, a whole lot of witty humor, and some smexy scenes that steam up the pages, Ms. Alexander is an excellent choice for your reading pleasure. I look forward to adding a few more of her books to my collection and am interested in finding out if her writing style deviates at all depending on the plot. One thing is for sure: the Sinful Family Secrets series is a definite win for me. My Wicked Little Lies in nothing short of a wicked fun treasure.
(Advance Uncorrected Proof Paperback provided by Kensington for review)...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlights, please visit Reader's Edyn. http://bit.ly/zi7cL9
So I threw in a bit more morsels forFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlights, please visit Reader's Edyn. http://bit.ly/zi7cL9
So I threw in a bit more morsels for all of you to enjoy than I usually do within the excerpt and highlight. I did so because Whisper To Me Of Love is a bit longer then the average novel length. Seems to me that the average length is somewhere between 380 and 420 pages based on my own observations. But this book gives you cake and some icing to go with it at 554 pages. Weeeee! And the best part was that I didn’t feel that the book stuttered at any point. Sometimes book tend to drag out – not so this book. In any case, I felt that with the added content, you could share in a little extra love for this book. The cover of this book has a quote saying basically that this book contains everything that you read a romance for. Well, I couldn’t agree more. So let’s get started.
Royce is an American, kicking it in England for a bit. He is very well off and has family within the ton. So basically, he is eligible, sought after, and very much in demand. But lately Royce has felt a bit bored with life within the ton. He is considering cutting his trip short to return home when he literally grasps the hand of a crook attempting to pick his pocket. Royce is cornered into reforming the filthy thief and soon discovers him to be a her. Well, the game changed from that moment on. And Royce finds himself entertaining the most delicious fantasies with Pip as the star. But more to the point, Royce has some suspicions as to Pip’s true identity, but he’ll have to protect her from those who intend her harm before he can prove who she truly is.
Pip is a rather talented thief. She and her two brothers are quite handy for the one-eyed man, who frequently sets them to particular targets to steal from. And the one-eyed man is pretty ticked off with Royce. Every time he turns around the blasted American is thwarting his plans. And when Royce ends up with Pip, he has a lot of work ahead of him if he is to carry out the plans he has had for Pip since the day of her birth. For Pip is truly Morgana. No, not a spoiler. The reader will pretty much guess very early on at Pip’s true identity, so I am not giving anything away here.
I enjoyed this book so much! The transformation in Pip from street urchin to Morgana was a joy to “watch” unfold. And how can you not love Royce, the brooding American who constantly castigates himself for his rutting tendencies. That was priceless. The chemistry between both characters was phenomenal. And of course, they had a long way to make it to HEA. I cannot tell you how much I prefer the HEA to face conflict prior to achieving it. The story is frequently enhanced in so many ways when the characters have to work toward attaining their one great love. My only issue is toward the end of the book. There are a lot of secondary characters in one location and they all seem to just melt away. The reader is left to assume their reasons for being where they are and then there is no reaction from any of them when a death occurs. I found that odd. I just dislike unanswered questions.
What I really want to know is why, for Pete sake, why, have I not read Ms. Busbee before. I have to tell you that I have found some truly entertaining authors since I started reviewing and cannot believe how much I used to limit myself without even knowing it. I had my favorite authors and I stuck with them – end of story. My best piece of advice that I can give to all of you is this: DO! NOT! LIMIT! YOURSELF! You have no idea the injustice that you are committing on yourself. Get out there and break outside of your bow. Explore the writing of new authors. Maybe you won’t enjoy them all, but when you come to that terrific book that you would have missed otherwise, it will all be worth it! And on the heels of that advice, I strongly recommend that you read Ms. Busbee if you have yet to experience the joy her HR has brought to me. So hop to it! Get this book, give it a try, and get ready to fall in love in the best way possible for a reader of romance.
(ARC Paperback received from Kensington for review)...more
“It’s too late for that, Lace. You can’t expect us to pretend we don’t know. To not wonder.” Ry stepped closer, his gaze drifting to her mouth. Hunger burned in his eyes.
Her heart thumped in response. She’d imagined that particular look on his face countless times, never believing she’d see it in actuality. This had to be a dream. Or another of her fantasies. That last part of his statement registered and she blinked. “W-wonder? About what?”
“You. Us.” His knuckles brushed the underside of her jaw, tipping it ever so slightly as his head descended. “This.” The husky word feathered her lips, a prelude to the lush pressure of his mouth upon hers.
Holy hotness people! If anything the warning contained in the blurb was tame. Although I probably could have done without the Santa in a speedo. *shudders* Some holiday tidings are best left unseen. Just sayin’.
The arrival of Lacey’s “naughty list” may be just the “in” that Ry and Bram have always longed for. The two realize that she never meant to sent the list, but they also know they would be fools not to make this list a reality. The lure of finally connecting with Lacey on a level that has been starved for far too long outweighs their resolve to deny their feelings any longer. And the trio discovers that this new “arrangement” is infinitely more pleasurable than their fantasies ever thought about hinting at. But will this temporary agreement to make the list a reality be enough?
Redford does a phenomenal job of creating a story that is much more than skin deep. While the story is full of creative and highly erotic sexual scenes, she also manages to bring depth to each character. Each has reasons for denying a future together as well as embracing the acknowledgment of the only chance they will ever get to make their dreams a reality. I liked that Lacey continued to fight against a possibility of a future despite the overwhelming fulfillment experienced each time she was with Ry and Bram. The friendship ultimately means more to her than the accomplishment of a fantasy. The depth of one another’s love is manifested in the power they hold of each others happiness after the boundaries of a plutonic relationship are crossed. Just in time for the holidays, The Naughty List explores lust, love, sacrifice, and the difficulty experienced when confronted with whether or not to trust enough to take a chance. If you are up for hawt ménage action, spiced up with holiday flare, you’ll definitely want to pre-order a copy of The Naughty List. Its guaranteed to heat up your frigid holiday nights.
Book 1: Enchanted By Blood by Laurie London My favorite book in this anthology was Laurie London’s Enchanted by Blood, a Sweetblood Novel (more specifically 2.5). I tend to always want more in the stories I read and London delivers; no easy feat for a novella. I get it, short story, word count, but you can still have a very entertaining read in a novella if played right. Enchanted by Blood is indeed well played: brooding vamp, supportive heroine, self-inflicted misery, and hot ‘n steamy sex. Another treat within the story was the depth of character that sometimes is lacking in novellas. Trace’s internal struggle between rekindling a relationship with Charlotte and walking away from her a second time was convincing. Did I mention Angry Birds and mirrors? Needless to say, I will be obtaining copies of the rest of the Sweetblood series for my own reading pleasure.
Book 2: Monsters Don’t Do Christmas by Michele Hauf Monsters Don’t Do Christmas, was another quick and fun read. I liked that Olivia believed herself to be a monster in her own right. Consequently, both Olivia and Daniel had their own daemons to fight and come to terms with before there could be the slightest glimmer of hope for a future with the other. Personally, I had a little trouble believing that a vampire and famous pop star could have a lasting relationship; especially a vamp with zero tolerance for paparazzi – although Daniel does redeem his actions with a rather useful trick. Regardless, the story was still fun in its out-of-the-box approach to a vampire/human relationship.
Book 3: When Herald Angels Sing by Caridad Pineiro When Fallen Angels Sing has a bit of a message to it. Well, two actually: to learn from your mistakes and trust in love to conquer all. Sounds sappy, I know. But this story is far removed from sappiness. At first I was a bit annoyed that the Angel was all perfect and glowing: in love with Damien and making a final appearance to teach him the error of his ways. My attitude changed when Angelina ended up having a bit to learn about her misplayed hands as well. Tarnished Angels are much more intriguing to read about. Well played by Pineiro who drew me back in with that interesting sequence of events. Yes, love may ultimately have the upper hand in a lot of instances, but in Damien and Angelina’s case, their actions are the final factors that decide if that love is allowed a chance to flourish. Based on the past transgressions of the hero/heroine, the story could easily have gone in either direction. Damien’s selfless response in the final pages may have been just a bit over the top, but also necessary if Angelina had any hope of completing her mission.
Book 4: All I Want For Christmas by Alexis Morgan All I Want For Christmas, I did not care for as much. Eagan is an undercover detective, but comes off a bit stalkerish in his bid to catch glimpses of Della. Likewise, Della seems a bit nutty to be staring out in the darkness hoping to see this guy she knows next to nothing about. The one time she does, she encourages his kooky behavior by sending out hot chocolate. Really? I would have called the cops – oh wait, he is the cops. Yikes! But my real issue with this story is a personal belief: novellas do not have to end with those three little words for the reader to be happy. Simply hinting toward an HEA can be enough for the reader to feel satisfied without forcing such a confession. I felt like Eagan was left completely unpunished for his action with Della just because he says he loves her. I get it, wrap it up all quick and pretty, but if I was Della I would be wondering just exactly why I could suddenly “hear” Eagan in my thoughts and you can be sure I would have demanded answers. But these are personal preferences and readers who like to see those three little words for the HEA will likely love the story and be completely happy with it. In any case, I did really like that Della’s “family” was not what she thought. The idea that we have “others” around us at all times is a whimsical fantasy of mine. Despite my “win” attitude towards anthologies, there are a few instances when the author is not showcased with her best work. And in all fairness, I would give Morgan another shot to see what her novels are like.
(Paperback received from author Laurie London for review)...more
“I got her number. She’s a f***ing amateur wearing a costume of a powerful witch. She will not get in because you are mine and that is that. She can’t best me. Not ever. I am badass, Dominic. I know most people don’t know it, but you better believe it. I will tear her apart when I find her. You can bet on that. I. Am. Not. Having. This.”
He exhaled long and hard and took her in.
“I am stupid in love with you.” He moved to her, putting his arms around her. Their magick flared and flowed into the room again. It felt good to be back in synch.
Heart of Darkness was the first Lauren Dane book I have had the pleasure of reading. This book is a paranormal romance filled with mystery, suspense, romance, and numerous magickal components. The story primarily follows witches Meriel Owen and Dominic Bright. Meriel has been groomed practically since birth to take over her mother’s position as head of the Owen clan. Dominic has been raised outside of clan affiliation and harbors a deep distrust of anything remotely smelling like an invitation to clan membership … until he meets Meriel.
The two meet up when Meriel is instructed by her mother to investigate a drain from an outside source on the clan’s power source, the font. Attraction is instant for both, but Meriel discovers that Dominic is much more than a potential fling. Ever cautious, Dominic is not exactly receptive toward Meriel’s announcement … Dominic and Meriel are bond-mates. Understanding Dominic’s difficulty, Meriel allows Dominic to adjust to her revelation without pressure.
The couple slowly progresses until another unexpected danger looms over their future. Secrets are divulged, lives are endangered and through it all, the Owen clan must take a stand against the threat. But will Dominic be able to set aside his distrust of clan affiliation to aid Meriel and her clan … a woman he has come to care for? Guess you will have to read this fascinating novel to find out.
Dane does an outstanding job of world building with Heart of Darkness. Oftentimes the first novel (especially in a planned series) can become cluttered with information, leaving the reader in a haze of confusion. Also marvelous is the task of not only introducing characters, but including back stories that enhance the reader’s ability to get to know the secondary cast on a deeper level than merely “supporting character”. The story successfully flows from beginning to end, never letting up on the suspense, romance, and depth of character.
I really enjoyed that Meriel and Dominic’s characters have a chance to evolve past the level they begin at in their magickal confidence. Another fascinating aspect was Meriel’s growth in roles from support within the clan, to leadership. Her personality comes across initially as intelligent, resourceful, and dedicated toward work and the clan. But underneath the cool exterior of Meriel the lawyer, lurks Meriel the badass witch who will do everything within her magickal power to fiercely protect anything or anyone who belongs to her. And Dominic belongs to her. Together they are an unstoppable force. Dane well and truly sucked me into this fascinating escape into the world of the Owen clan.
Heart of Darkness is the first of the Bound By Magick Novel series. Readers are treated to a glimpse of the next installment of the series giving Simon a much needed nudge to leading role from secondary character in Heart of Darkness. I for one am looking forward to reading more about the Owen clan and learning more about the uber-sexy Lycian, Simon. Heart of Darkness releases on November 1, but can be pre-ordered now by clicking the link at the top.
(ARC Book received from a Goodreads Giveaway) ...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/zR4r8n
Julianne is in a bit of a quarry. HFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/zR4r8n
Julianne is in a bit of a quarry. Her husband has been dead about a year. She believes his death was not a suicide as it was ruled, but a murder. Her step-son is about her age and has never liked her. He is now threatening to cut her off if she doesn’t marry his friend, who Julianne abhors. She has also been contacted by an unknown individual. Her husband had obtained some ancient daggers prior to his death. Through hard work and determination, he located 5 of the set of 6. The anonymous person had demanded all 6 daggers. He will pay Julianne handsomely should she deliver, or withdraw the offer at the end of the deadline set. The problem is that she doesn’t have any ides where the final dagger lays. If she manages to deliver the daggers the money would take care of her and she wouldn’t have to worry about being cut off by her step-son. Her biggest fear is that she will have to close down the home for young girls with nowhere to go without the funds to support it. Could she possibly have anything else to deal with? Enter Jacob.
Jacob is a well known rake and woos only women who will be unable to try and trap him onto a permanent arrangement. Mostly, they have to be married. He also has a mysterious gift that allows him to touch a metal object and see the history of said object. While Jacob does not advertise exactly what this gift is, he does embrace his extraordinary talent and aims to put his ability to good use. He also has remarkable intuition and knows immediately when he is being lied to. So Julianne seeks his services out in an attempt to locate the missing dagger.
The two share an immediate attraction and fairly quickly succumb to their desires while simultaneously trying to resist the deeper pull that draws them together. Jacob does not tell Julianne much about his gift initially, but she is a clever woman and is able to deduce much from her observations. Once everything is out on the table, they begin to work together more effectively and begin conquering their difficulties one at a time. They have a dagger to locate, an anonymous buyer to expose, a secret society suspected of wanting the dagger to infiltrate, countless other dangerous possibilities, and the biggest obstacle of all to overcome … acknowledging their deep feelings for one another.
Overall, I enjoyed this book, but it did have a couple of faults. I liked both main characters, but I didn’t fall in love with them. Their wit and humor was absolutely fabulous and is possibly the component that made the book for me. I love snark and Ms. Marlowe excelled at it.
The problem, I think, is that there was just too much going on in the book to make it flow seamlessly. First, Julianne used to be an actress. She married an older man, but she had no title what-so-ever. While marrying below station is not outside the realm of possibility, I don’t know that her status as a former start of the stage served any purpose other than to mention it here and there. I was also a bit taken back by Jacob’s power. I read the blurb, but his power is more so in the genre of paranormal ability. I wasn’t expecting an entire paranormal component as this book is listed as a historical romance. Not that I didn’t enjoy Jacob’s ability. It was out-of –the-box and added a bit of excitement to the story. It was just unexpected. One thing that I missed was that this is the second book in series. Jacob’s family is peppered with gifted individuals in alternate forms of ability. Had I read the first book, perhaps everything would have made a bit more sense to me. I think the book blurb just barely touched on the contents of the book and so a lot is left to discover within the book. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but it could be slightly misleading to the readers as far as expectation.
Another thing I found odd was that there was no resolution to the step-son issue. He just kind of dropped out of the story. He was mentioned a few times and then, POOF, nothing. He is, quite possibly, an unnecessary character. In the end, other than a few missives sent to tell Julianne to get her butt back to the estate to marry his friend, he served very little purpose. And finally, the ending. The book worked up to this final “battle” if you will and then just ends. There could have easily been another chapter or two or even an epilogue. Anything to keep the book from ending to suddenly. It was like introduce all of the problems, work up to the climax, climax, BOOM, over. GAH! In fact I think that is what I said when the book was over. “Gah! Are you kidding me? That’s it?” I thought I had another chapter at least, but it was a segment taken from the first book. I felt a bit let down with the abrupt ending. In fact, abrupt is even too long in meaning to describe the ending as it was only a matter of a few paragraphs. The showdown of sorts between good versus evil and about five paragraphs following. The ending was actually unfortunate because even with the pointless past and character, I still didn’t count my time spent reading the book as wasted. With the rushed ending, I have to re-evaluate my feelings. I only hope that as an uncorrected proof, the ending was given a bit of a makeover.
So here is what I think. If you are a fan of the author, you are probably going to like the book regardless. If you have read the first book, you will know what to expect with this one and not be in store for any unexpected aspects. If I had the chance for a do-over, I would definitely read the first book prior. Hindsight from book one may have given be a bit better understanding before beginning this book. If you enjoy historical romance with a paranormal slant, you will very possibly find this book to your liking. For those who dislike abrupt endings and details that could be interpreted as superfluous, I caution you: You may well enjoy the read until the end. Like I said, I did enjoy the book for the most part, but it could have been better.
(Uncorrected paperback proof provided by Kensington for review.)...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/xdmHPt
Tempted By Her Innocent Kiss is booFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/xdmHPt
Tempted By Her Innocent Kiss is book 3 in the Pregnancy & Passion series by Ms. Banks. Ashley has a father who is well-to-do in the business world and consequently has a company Devon wants to get his hands on in the interest of expanding the business he and his friends have worked to build over the years. William, Ashley’s father strikes a bargain with Devon. If he wants to do business with Copeland, Devon gets Ashley with the deal. William knows his daughter’s flaws and wants to be sure she is settled down with the right kind of man who will take care of her. The only condition is that Ashley must never find out the truth – that Devon married her as part of a business deal.
Ashley is free-spirited. She wears her emotions on her sleeve and is fiercely loyal to those who she loves. She would do anything for her friends and family. Devon is somewhat annoyed, but also slightly amused by Ashley’s seemingly childish antics. She calls him out of the blue at work just to tell him she loves him. She leaves her things all over the place. She spends a lot of time at the animal shelter helping out with the abandoned animals. And she doesn’t know the meaning of “grow up” – or so Devon believes. When Ashley discovers the truth of William and Devon’s scheme on her wedding night, she is forced to grow up fast.
In an effort to save what “could be” of her marriage, Ashley makes drastic changes. She banishes all traces of her cluttered ways around the apartment, she changes the way she dressed and styles her hair, she dives head-long into domestic responsibilities like learning how to cook ~~~ and all along, she looses herself. It is almost like she dies a little inside. I probably would to knowing my husband only cared for me but didn’t love me, married me as a business arrangement with my father, and wanted me to change the very essence of who I was. But she makes an effort. The problem is that while Devon begins to miss the silly phone calls and random aspects to the sparkling personality that was once Ashley, he also does not realize that she is no longer herself. Attributing her changes to adjusting to married life, he is not overly concerned with the remarkable differences. Unfortunately for Devon, Ashley decides she has had it when she discovers she is pregnant. And Devon might be too dense to grasp the gravity of Ashley’s impact in his life; not to mention his oblivion of the depth of his feelings toward her.
I enjoyed this story. Some people might be turned off by the Pregnancy & Passion component to this series. I, however, am not one of those people. I appreciate how people oftentimes change their outlook on life what they realize an innocent life has joined the picture. I have seen it happen in real life countless times. Why wouldn’t the same be viable in romance as well? And so far in the series, the pregnancies have been minimal to the actual storyline. Yeah, sounds contradictory doesn’t it. What I mean is that while the pregnancy helps to push the main characters in the right direction, we are not bombarded with all things baby. I really think that those who shy away from this series would not be put off with the stories as they stand. The fact that happy-ever-after isn’t just *POOF* in front of us makes the journey that much sweeter – and equally painful. Not that I enjoy the pain of the main characters, but I do love to see the transitions from one mind set to another and the events that get them from point A to point B. While the story is short at less than 200 pages, both the depth of character and development of character is executed in a believable way. The story does seem to end rather abruptly and an epilogue would have been a welcomed addition. However, knowing that book 4 is on the way makes that complaint minimal at best. Bottom line, this story is a quick, enjoyable read. Those holding back simply because of the “pregnancy” aspect should put their reservations aside and give it a go. Chances are you’ll enjoy your time spent with Ms. Banks, her business tycoons, and the women who tame them.
(Digital ARC provided by publisher via NetGalley for review.)...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please vist Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/L9rHeS
Let me first say that I have been reFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please vist Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/L9rHeS
Let me first say that I have been reading about The Eternal Guardian Series, and reading about it, and reading about it, and finally … I have read one. While I did not start at the beginning, which is generally something I am a stickler for, I was given the opportunity to read ENRAPTURED, the fourth book in the series, so I jumped on it. That said, I could tell that there was information that I could have taken with me by reading in order, but it was absolutely not necessary that I read the books in order. ENRAPTURED is just fine as a stand alone read, despite being part of a series.
Orpheus is an anomaly. Part daemon, part *****, Not only do people around him struggle with his background (the ones who know the truth), Orpheus himself struggles with who he is. But the kicker is that he is now living his second life. He has no memory of his first life until he meets Skyla and odd visions assail him intermittently. But the visions are strong, leading him to believe that he has an unknown connection with Skyla – almost as if the visions were in fact memories. And Skyla? It doesn’t take her long to realize exactly who Orpheus is.
Skyla is a Siren, a member of Zeus’ personal protection group; a security detail if you will. After recovering from a vicious attack, she is back in the saddle (as it were) and ready to complete he latest assignment – to stop Orpheus’ quest for power and end him once he obtains a very powerful orb – at least that is what she is led to believe.
As the mysteries unravel and both Orpheus and Skyla realize the truth of the situation, their connection blossoms and deepens into something more. But the truth could very well destroy the thin thread that connects them as neither is ready to trust and certainly not ready to open their heart to something potentially devastating: love. The journey of Orpheus and Skyla begins with opposite goals in mind, but eventually segs into a common purpose. And along the way, just maybe, a possibility of happiness could occur … but fate has a way of intervening in many things.
I really enjoyed Ms. Naughton’s world she built around the myths and legends that we all grew up learning about. Zeus and his gods and goddesses sure do like to stir up trouble. What was nice was that I started out with a slight understanding of the story with my knowledge of the Greek gods. But Ms. Naughton then took that information and spun it all into a world of her own. An exciting, interesting, captivating world full of twists and turns, and a whole lot of smexy!
Orpheus is a tortured man and reluctant hero, which makes the reader fall in love with him that much harder. I appreciated that he stayed reluctant toward, well … pretty much everything until the very end as it made his character seem more viable. And don’t we all love those tortured male characters who are basically forced into heroism. Those heroes that were possibly heroes all along but refused to admit it? Yup. You know what I am talking about. *nods*
And Skyla has an even harder time than Orpheus – at least I think so – because she remembers who Orpheus was and what he was to her, remembers what he did, what she didn’t do, and is now forced to relive that scenario all over again. The problem is that Orpheus is throwing her curve ball after curve ball because he is breaking Skyla down. She is at war within against the man he was and the man he is now while constantly struggling with her sense of duty as a Siren. She ultimately has to make a decision as to what path she will take. And, trust me, she has to choose paths more than once throughout the story.
I thoroughly enjoyed my time spent with Ms. Naughton and her Eternal Guardians and look forward to reading more about these men; heroes that walk the earth with special gifts and a strong sense of duty and the women that conquer them. For those of you who enjoy romance mixed together with a bit of the paranormal, a touch of fantasy, legends given life through creativity, and compelling stories of honor, Ms. Naughton is an author you will not want to miss. I, for sure, will definitely be returning to this world.
(ARC eBook galley provided by NetGalley; Sourcebooks Casablanca)...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/HMO7n1
Blake has always been viewed as lazFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/HMO7n1
Blake has always been viewed as lazy and irresponsible. A seeming disappointment to his parents, and a poor option as a replacement for his powerful father. But Blake has allowed these assumptions to occur and has taken steps to see that such stereotypes remain. Blake has a secret. A shortcoming of sorts and he would rather the public view him as lazy than the idiot he thinks himself to be.
Minerva has had political aspirations for some time. She is highly intelligent and dreams of having a voice of her own in the future. He goal, when she encounters Blake at the ball given in her honor, is to secure a proposal from a future-husband who can lead the way to making her dreams come true. Unfortunately, a chance encounter with Blake, paired with mistaken identity seals her fate in exactly the opposite direction she wanted to head in – or was it?
Blake and Minerva – a couple that, against all odds, actually ends up making sense. A couple those, if first impressions are to be believed, were a phenomenal example of opposites. I have to admit, I initially did not hold very high hopes for this couple. They seemed so m ismatched that I had trouble seeing them as a couple, let alone a powerful couple in the ton with vast amounts of influence. Minerva seemed too intelligent for Blake and he didn’t seem to stand a chance of being able to manage such a spirited woman with near unattainable dreams for her future. But first impressions, in this case, were completely off the mark. Blake ends up an entirely different individual than the reader is introduced to. Minerva as well, seems somewhat cold and standoffish as a female MC, but ends up exhibiting raging passion within many aspects of her life – specifically anything she sets her mind to and anyone she cares for. I feel that the excerpt I chose is a good example of just how difficult a match the two seem to be. And in contrast, the dialogue highlight I chose - one of my favorite in the book - I chose because it shows so much about the characters. Those that can read between the lines can see Minerva’s competitive spirit as well as her political ambitions and Blake’s humor paired with a suggestion that there is more to him than presented on the surface.
This is the first book I have read from Ms. Neville and the fourth in this series (The Burgundy Club). While I believe reading the preceding books would have helped endear me to the characters sooner, I also believe that I was granted a favor in reading this book first with these particular characters. I read a review recently of this book in which the reader was concerned about the characters because of their descriptions in previous books. Good point. Given this bit of information, I may not have been interested in these characters enough to read their story. I suppose it all depends of the type of character you prefer. For me, skeptical as I was as I began this book, I am glad that I read it first. This is actually saying quite a lot coming from a person who, whenever possible, is anal about reading in order.
I have to say that I was slightly disappointed with the intimate scenes. Rather strong language was presented fairly early in the book, making me believe that the scenes would be steamy and somewhat dirty (dirty in the “my cheeks are burning, but I am loving every minute of it” kind of way). Sadly, they were not. Don’t get me wrong. The scenes were well written and entertaining. And I very much enjoyed “watching” the passion grow between Blake and Minerva, but I felt they could have been just a bit steamier.
Overall, I enjoyed my time spent with Confessions From An Arranged Marriage. I liked the secondary characters enough to further explore their stories and have added them to my TBR list. Minerva, while initially perceived as overly intelligent and mismatched to Blake ends up being quite a lot of fun in her escapades. And Blake, with his sense of humor and points of weakness that shake his confidence, which he effectively shields everyone from – everyone except the astute Minerva – makes him a much more likeable character once the reader understands his motivations. And while these characters are not my preferred type, I found that I enjoyed the transformation from first impressions to the essence that truly was Blake and Minerva.
(Digital ARC provided by author for review.)...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/IK4oOq
This is the first book I have readFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/IK4oOq
This is the first book I have read by Lisa Norato. I checked her website and saw that she had a couple of others out, so I will likely be reading them in the future. When I first read this blurb, I was intrigued. A pirate *coughs* I mean privateer … a young lasy taking care of child known as her brother, though he is not … said privateer searching for his long lost son … all tied in as a Christian historical romance. Yeah, I wanted to read it after that. So I found myself returning to my roots and enjoying yet another Christian romance book.
For those of you who don’t know, my mother gave me many Grace Livingston Hill books to try and encourage my reading, but hopefully steer me away from the … errr …. Smuttier variety I preferred. At that time it was strictly Johanna Lindsey. And she was right. I was too young to be reading those books, but I did anyway. And here I am, still loving the smut. But … she did instill in me a love of Christian romance and I do occasionally return to them from time to time. That said, let’s get back to the book.
So Brogan is a former privateer – not pirate. Although the distinction between the two for many was a thin line barely there. For me, hey ~ I love me a pirate! Brogan always wanted to captain his own ship. A difficult dream to obtain considering his harsh beginning in life. But he worked extremely hard and it finally happened. Prior to his captain position beginning, he married and had a son. But his wife was rather … ambitious ~ I guess is a good word for it. Though she had some other things going on as well. So while Brogan was away on his ship, she got rid of their son and told Brogan he would never find him. Soon after she perished in a fire and he never found out his son’s whereabouts. His purpose in life then became a focus of locating his son.
Enter Lorena. Brogan has found his son and he is living in the home of the Huntley’s as Drew. Lorena is Drew’s sister and has charge of him much of the time. Her meeting with the Captain does not begin on the right foot, but eventually the two become friends and Brogan’s world is knocked upside-down. He struggles with carrying out his plan to take his son back and the strong connection he feels with Lorena. Lorena too shares strong feelings towards Brogan. Eventually the catalyst occurs when Brogan admits who he truly is and not only one secret is revealed, an entire web of lies and deceit is unraveled. But will Brogan and Lorena be able to more forward from the devastating truth or will it destroy their delicate new-found affection?
What I really enjoyed in this story was the growth of all characters involved. Brogan starts out as a father desperate to get his son back. He hatches a plan to essentially kidnap his son away from the Huntley’s, but soon discovers a fondness for all of the Huntley’s. And when Brogan has to rescue Lorena, he realizes that fondness may be a bit more which pretty much throws a hitch in his plan. But this is not the only challenge Brogan will have to overcome, though I don’t feel I should reveal any more than I have. Lorena, too, has an epiphany of sorts when she realizes that someone she trusted was not as honorable as she had believed. She sort of blindly trust everyone and has a very good heart. But she also realizes that she should have understood signs that had always been present. But because of her nature to see the best in people, she denied existence of the negative qualities. The reader even sees growth in Drew and Mr. Huntley. Growth of character is one component I look for in a well written book.
The story was enjoyable and a pleasure to read. While lacking the physical intimacy that I generally read, I found that this story did not need such an enhancement. Prize of My Heart is beautifully written as it is and is easily a story of faith, perseverance, and inspiration. What one man holds as his greatest treasure ultimately leads him to the greatest treasure of all … the prize of his heart. I very much enjoy how Ms. Norato wraps the book up wonderfully with a sweet epilogue. I look forward to reading more of her stories in the future.
(ARC paperback won from LibraryThing; provided by author) ...more
For full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/Vd40cm
I originally entered to win this boFor full review including excerpt and dialogue highlight, please visit Reader's Edyn at: http://bit.ly/Vd40cm
I originally entered to win this book because I enjoyed the blurb I read about it. Never one to pass up a historical romance read, I took a chance … and won! I knew nothing of this author and was taking a chance based solely on the blurb. I can honestly say that I am glad that I went with my instinct. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this story and hope to be able to experience another of Ms. Moore’s books again in the future.
This story is sort of a snippet of a story surrounding an actual story. It begins with Nerissa, who is visiting Foxwoods Hall in the hopes of fulfilling her dream of painting the famed medieval gardens. As she looks around her surroundings she wonders if the people she views in the portraits were truly happy ~ and so the real story begins.
Blissot and Ivetta live under their Uncle’s rule. He is interested only in how he can further his own position and arranges Ivetta’s marriage. But Ivetta is in love with another and so the women scheme to switch places. While Ivetta’s love spirits her away for their secret marriage, Bliss is be on her way to marry her unknown intended. Bliss is firm in her resolve to carry out the plan, but second guesses herself for walking into a marriage with a man she knows nothing about. But after a few words with William, she knows without a doubt that she can trust him.
Williams was recently a landless knight but because of his brave actions, was gifted with land, a title, and a marriage bargain. He looks forward to beginning his future, but wonders what his intended will think of marrying a formerly landless knight. Ivetta’s beauty is well known, but William wonders what she will be like on the inside with so many praising her appearance. He is immediately taken with her and her gentle spirit, kind words, and firm resolve; ultimately surprised by her lack of narcissism. Before long he realizes just what a treasure he was given in Ivetta. Except that he still does not know that she is truly Bliss. And Bliss struggles each day to tell him the truth, fearful that he will see her trickery as a betrayal. The longer she puts it off, the more she tears herself up inside as she falls deeper in love with William. She fears that finding out both her identity and that he did not marry the beautiful sister will crush any feelings of affection he has for her.
This story was quick and engaging. I did not realize that it was a novella at first and was worried a bit about its integrity with such a page limitation. I was thrilled to discover that this story was well put together with engaging characters and a very enjoyable premise. While the story was fast paced, I did not feel that any crucial moments were left out. Ms. Moore kept it flowing throughout. William is perhaps a bit more understanding than I would have expected him to be given his status as a knight, but he is also portrayed as a hard worker and fair. Ultimately his love for Bliss is what he values above all else. Bliss is a bit more self-conscious than I would have liked her to be, but I found her a generally likeable character. Her willingness to sacrifice all for her sister is commendable and her longing for the same kind of love Ivetta possesses with her husband is endearing.
Following Bliss and William’s story, the reader returns to Nerissa getting lost within the Hall and encountering one of the Reynard relatives. A couple of insinuations are hinted at, allowing the reader to infer what would likely transpire next. Overall, this story was very entertaining. As a lover of historical romance, I found it to be a great read to pass an hour or two. If you are looking for something quick and enjoy HR, then definitely read this one. And if you haven’t read much or any HR, this would be a terrific story to read as a glimpse into the genre. Highly recommended!
(eBook copy won from LibraryThing early reviewers; provided by author/publisher company in exchange for an honest review.) ...more
I could kick myself for not reading this book or author sooner. I mean where the heck have I been thatReview first posted on Reader's Edyn (blogspot)
I could kick myself for not reading this book or author sooner. I mean where the heck have I been that this is the first Shelly Laurenston book that I have ever read? I don’t require snark in the books that I read, but I definitely prefer it. And I cannot describe Ms. Laurenston’s style as anything better than mastered-snarkalicious-awesomeness! And what is better is that there is so much more than the wit! The story contains action, drama, dysfunction, lust, mystery, intrigue, paranormal, and super hot sex. Fans of PNR better mark this as a MUST read or risk missing one of the best clusters of fabulous they have ever encountered.
I don’t know that I should even begin to try and explain all that this story contains because it really is quite a lot to take in. I believe that with all of the components that this story likely has roots elsewhere that I intend to seek out in the very near future. That said, for the purpose of this review, I will stick to the main characters and not delve into any of the awesome supporting characters.
Lou Crushek (Crush) is a bear; Polar Bear to be specific. A loner by nature, he likes to keep his life in order. No drama, no partner, and definitely not a psychotic, assassin feline. Or at least that is the first impression Cella gives. Unfortunately for Crush, the sexy Tiger and her scheming ways prove dangerous for his senses and before too long the minx has literally inserted herself into the middle of his life both personally and professionally. Crush’s tough exterior screams to get far away, but his attraction to the feline spitfire just may be strong enough for Crush to talk himself into allowing more with Cella. Never mind the risk and danger the two continually find themselves in or the drama-free life that quickly crumbles into oblivion. The chaos that is Cella quickly turns out to be exactly what the brooding bear needs.
Marcella Malone (Cella) is a wily Tiger that wears many hats; security, assassin, single mother, black sheep, kick ass hockey player, and a little bit of crazy just to name a few. She struggles to find a balance between raising her daughter the right way which is basically impossible for her, especially with a meddlesome family. Consequently, or possibly because of how she just “is”, she thrown herself full on into everything else in her life. When she sets her sights on Crush as a way to scoot under the family radar, a fake relationship quickly develops into a craving that only Crush and Cella can satisfy together. Before too long, Cella is considering possibilities that she long ago filed as “not going to happen”.
I cannot even begin to describe how much I truly enjoyed my time spent with Crush and Cella. If ever there were two opposites that attracted these two take the cake. The wonderful mix of quirky behavior, wit, broodiness, and undeniable attraction make for one of the best PNR reads I have ever had the pleasure of coming across. In short, if you haven’t experienced Laurenston, you are operating at a disadvantage. One read and I am a forever fan.
(ARC paperback copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.)...more
Favorite Quote: “Harrison and Reva decided it would be best to leave the six leviathan henchmen in the minivan while they ransacked the Jameson girl’sFavorite Quote: “Harrison and Reva decided it would be best to leave the six leviathan henchmen in the minivan while they ransacked the Jameson girl’s apartment. In all honesty, it killed Harrison just a little bit inside to be chauffeuring his hand-picked death squad around in a f**king minivan. The future leader of the world did not cruise in the same vehicle that shuttled soccer kids to and fro, for f**k’s sake. It was an abomination. First chance he got, he was stealing a godd**n tank.”
Review: Jodi Redford raises the stakes … and succeeds! Can we talk about that wicked hot cover for just a second? I was practically drooling all over myself before I had read the first page. How frickin hot is that gorgeous body with that sexy tattoo? And I love how the hands are wrapped around him, but the rest is unseen. Sensual? Absolutely!
Personally, I have read a lot of books with shifters, but this is the first time I have experienced ocean-dwelling shifters and then some. You name it, seals, nymphs, sharks, seagulls (yeah, I said seagulls), mermaids, walruses, puffer fish, leviathans … makes for a very interesting cast. This story picks up where Book 2, The Seven Year Witch ends with poor Willa being led against her own will toward the ocean; a place she is deathly afraid of. Max is both Sheriff of the area and on rounds that night when he encounters Willa being dragged deep into the ocean by a leviathan. Max rescues her and discovers that she is breathing under water, but an unconscious Willa has no recollection of the feat when she comes to.
Eventually Max pieces together a few cold cases with his vast knowledge of the Atlantean population. Yep – as in Atlantis! I have to admit, I was wondering how a witch story with the heroine in imminent peril was going to work for the third time in a row, but the Atlantis spin took everything to a whole new level. No stale reused story plots here! I also liked how parts of Book 1 tied into Book 3 allowing the components to all three stories click together. That said, with Book 2, you would be better off reading Book 1 first. However, with Maximum Witch, a reader could read it on its own and be able to understand without any gaping holes left wide open.
I do have a few questions though. How did Willa get away from being Domino’s assistant? I mean, impending danger was probably automatic for a leave of absence or something. But one day she is working and the next day she’s not; nor do we hear anything else about working for Domino. Anyone who has read the previous books knows Domino is NOT going to allow that to just happen. And what is with Boone and Justin? Blushes and what not all over the place, but nothing developed or was explained in plain text. Do we have a possible Book 4 in plotting phase? Also, Willa is best friends with Marabella, so where does she go? Wouldn’t she want to spill her guts to her best friend? Just seems like we would have seen more of Marabella during the emotional turmoil of the last few chapters. Now these questions are not paramount to the immediate story of Max and Willa, they are just little nags in the back of my head.
Now, a shifting shark? I too had my brows raised a time or two. By the end of the story – errr – more like by a very creative bathtub scene, the ever talented Max, water manipulating extraordinaire, had me begging for a Tiger shark of my own! Kudos to Redford for keeping my interest with creative spins that broke outside the box, entertaining me from start to finish.
(**book won in Twitter contest, @sknighteditor)...more
I have been sitting on this ARC for a while and I could just spit,For full review, please visit original post on Readersedyn at http://bit.ly/1EH4Mrh
I have been sitting on this ARC for a while and I could just spit, I am so upset that I didn’t read it any sooner. I had no idea that this was the 19th book in the Murray series. Yes. I said 19th! Nor did I realize that I actually have the 18th book on my shelf, waiting to be read. And let me tell you, that thing is darn near calling to me now to get it read. This is my first Hannah Howell novel and I can honestly call myself a new fan! I have a couple of other books by her that I picked up at yard sales, but never read. Let me assure you that I will be rectifying that tragedy right quick!
Let me start by saying how much I love reading Scottish HR. Love. It. But sometimes the brogue can lose the reader. As you read, you end up getting stuck on the thick accent and trying to decipher exactly what is being said. I was beyond thrilled to quickly discover the masterful balance between the internal monologues and spoken dialect within the novel. Not once did I misstep in my reading adventure. In fact, I polished this puppy off in one night. And really, what is not to enjoy about the Scottish Highlands and the romanticized past anyway? Nothing! That is what.
While this is book 19, I had no problem reading it first and didn’t become lost without the background provided from previous installments. However, I did glean from the secondary characters that it would have been fun to have been previously introduced. I enjoyed the seriousness of the story, but also found myself laughing at the playfulness that lightened the mood on several occasions. My only complaint was when Brian referred to Triona as Brett’s “lass” and they just glide right by the statement. I though a bit of insight would have been addressed on that terminology. However, she is again referred to as the same several pages later and that is when he casually mentions that she is not really “his”. Thought that was a bit odd but given that it is in fact my only complaint, I would say it isn’t really much of anything and wouldn’t interfere with the enjoyment of the book at all.
If you have any of Ms. Howell’s books and haven’t read them yet, don’t be a moron like myself. Read them. And if you don’t have any of her books yet, you really should give her a try. I can attest that The Murray series is a set to be enjoyed and quite possibly read several times again; especially those who enjoy Scottish HR.
Paperback ARC provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.
For full review, see original post at readersedyn dot blogspot dot com:
I have to tell you that the title alone completely caught me. Pair that with thFor full review, see original post at readersedyn dot blogspot dot com:
I have to tell you that the title alone completely caught me. Pair that with the gorgeous cover and I knew had to read this book. I mean, how DO you seduce a royal bodyguard? At first I believed that this would be an intentional title, meaning that one of the main characters was setting their sights on the other. But I found, pleasantly, that both main characters were the unsuspecting victim. Sounds odd I suppose. But I assure you it all makes sense in the end.
This book is the first in the Renegade Royals series. Each main male lead is related to a royal bloodline in some way – in Aden’s case, he is the bastard child of the Prince Regent. He has lived with the stigma of being a bastard his whole life and, to some extent, suffered for it. His status and rather large chip on his shoulder were the perfect combination to propel him into the life of espionage. But even a bastard can be born with an innate sense of patriotism and loyalty. And so when Lady Vivien abruptly enters his life, his sense of protection seems fitting – but the familiarity that quickly surfaces between the pair tells of something more that they could share – if they will allow it.
I really enjoyed this historical romance from Ms. Kelly. The characters are very well developed and interact wonderfully together. They have a terrific balance between intrigue and sensuality. Their emotional connection is undeniable and their sexual attraction is not only hot, but almost sweet in an innocent way. I enjoyed how each one complimented the other in both attributes and shortcomings. For example, Aden’s harsh feelings toward his bastardy which has had a lot to do with the man he has developed into, doesn’t make a bit of difference to Vivien. And as clever as Vivien is, Aden is always one step ahead of her. These characters are thoroughly likeable and sure to please anyone who enjoys historical romance. Secondary characters Dominic, Lady Thornbury, and Griffin Steele make the book even more entertaining. I will say that I almost immediately fell in love with Griffin when he was introduced. A wonderful thing considering book 2 is his. I for one, cannot wait to read the next installment! So do yourself a favor and buy this book. It will not disappoint. And I am sure that Ms. Kelly will become a “go-to” author instantly if you haven’t already experienced her writing genius.
Paperback provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review....more