I haven't been on Goodreads or written a review in about a million years but I just finished Karen Rose's latest book and had to drop in and write a r...moreI haven't been on Goodreads or written a review in about a million years but I just finished Karen Rose's latest book and had to drop in and write a review.
Series: All of Karen Rose's books are part of the same universe and have various character connections. Some of the books have deeper plot connections. I think you could probably read this one on its own but you may wonder about past characters and what happened to them. And because she is such an awesome author I'd really suggest starting at the beginning.
Summary: State's Attorney Daphne Montgomery is prosecuting a high-profile murder trial that has resulted in multiple threats against her life and the lives of her family. But what Daphne doesn't know is that there is someone behind the scenes pulling all the strings. Someone with a deadly vendetta against her with motives Daphne could never have imagined.
FBI Agent Joseph Carter has yearned for Daphne for months. And he's not about to let anything happen to her. Then Daphne's son goes missing and the bodies begin to pile up and asDaphne, Joseph and the rest of the Baltimore crew dig deeper, things only get more convoluted. Secrets that Daphne has long held close are about to be ripped open. It's a race against time to figure out what's going on and who wants Daphne to pay.
Review: I'm a huge romantic suspense fan and Karen Rose is one of the masters of the genre. And this book. Wow. Just wow. Maybe not quite OMG WOW! that Die For Me (Romantic Suspense, #7) was but still a really fabulous book.
I'm always so amazed at how detailed and cohesive a story Karen Rose can tell. The suspense plot is really wonderfully crafted. It's such a complicated story and Rose manages to twine it all together perfectly with every detail fitting together and making perfect sense. It's really kind of awe-inspiring how she can tell such complex stories.
I enjoyed the suspense plot of this book. It takes you on twisted path that starts you at one point, leads you to another, then dives into the past to tie it all together. I was totally hooked into the story, trying to figure out how everything tied together, why it happened, how it would all turn out. Rose really kept me reading and wanting to uncover all the details. The depth of the plot is really so well done. Every time you blink new details emerge then sends the story winding down another path that you never really predicted.
I also liked the fact that the plot wasn't really a whodunit - you know the who from the very beginning - but rather part of the suspense of the plot is about the connections. How it all tied together to create the situation Daphne and Joseph found themselves in. I had a pretty good idea of how it all tied together, but there was enough doubt, enough possibility to lead me to other conclusions. I love books that keep me guessing. And for a while, this one did.
On the romance front, things are admittedly bit on the low key side. The focus of the book is definitely on the suspense aspect but there's still a nicely developed romance to keep the romance lover in me satisfied. The romance, though, is not really about the building of feelings, the push/pull between two people. Daphne and Joseph both already have feelings for each other and the situation they're in forces them to finally confront them. There's really not a lot of angsty will they/won't they. But more about will their new-found love survive the twisted situation they are in. Still, I enjoyed these two and liked both characters.
Another great aspect to the book is the tie-ins to past books/characters - of which there are quite a few. You get the obvious reconnection with the other Baltimore book characters - Grayson and Sophie, and JD and Lucy. Plus the continuing saga of Clay's unrequited love for Stevie. But Rose also delves back further and brings back Vito Ciccotelli (and referencing his wife and how they met), mentions Dana, Ethan, and some other past characters, plus reintroduces a young man (who was a boy in a previous book). And I just absolutely love these kind of intertwining stories. It creates such a wonderful cohesiveness and it also lets you take a peek at characters that stuck with you in the past. It just really adds a great ambiance to the story.
Did I have any criticisms? Ummm...nope. None that I can think of. I was perfectly satisfied with every aspect of the book. Does that mean everyone else will be to? No, obviously not. This book is more a suspense/thriller with a strong romantic element which may not be enough for some romance fans. It's also rather dark at time which could bother some. And it's also, as mentioned above, very complicated. There are tons of plot twists, a whole lot of characters, and just a lot to keep track of in general. Not everyone likes that kind of story. Me? It's the perfect combination.
I will be eagerly awaiting Rose's next book. I can't wait to find out what happens with Stevie and Clay. I'm hopelessly intrigued by Deacon. And I'd really like to one day revisit Daphne's son Ford. I just wish Rose published more than one book a year. It'll such having to wait till 2014 to get my next Karen Rose fix.(less)
Good book...I didn't LOVE it, but I enjoyed it quite a bit. More so than I did "Shadow Dance" and maybe a smidge more than "Slow Burn".
Solid storyline...moreGood book...I didn't LOVE it, but I enjoyed it quite a bit. More so than I did "Shadow Dance" and maybe a smidge more than "Slow Burn".
Solid storyline, fairly good romance and characters - I LOVED John Paul - and it kept me wanting to keep reading. I was rather surprised at who one of the antagonists was...though looking back there were clues, I just wasn't expecting it. Which is cool. I'm not often surprised by that kind of thing. There were a couple of details I thought were neglected, but they didn't kill the story.
I'm quite looking forward to reading the next book in the unofficial set, Killjoy, which features John Paul. He's a fascinating character and I can't wait to see how things play out for him.(less)
Broken record time: this is a prototypical Diana Palmer book. The same thing I say about all her other books holds true here. All her w...moreRating: 3.5 / 5
Broken record time: this is a prototypical Diana Palmer book. The same thing I say about all her other books holds true here. All her writing staples are here.
Series: It's hard to say you should read this series in order because there are about a billion LTT/Jacobsville books, but this one does have direct tie-ins to some of her most recent books. The plot in this one started several books ago. But I think you can understand this one without having read the others.
Summary: Federal agent McKuen Kilraven is finally getting somewhere in finding out who murdered his wife and daughter years ago. He's never been able to let go of what happened to them. Which is why he spurns the crush of young 911 dispatcher Winnie Sinclair. He'll never get attached like that again, so he'll stay away from Winnie, and do whatever it takes to find the killer.
But as things progress, it becomes clear that Winnie can help him solve the case. So he proposes a temporary marriage to fool people while they dig up info. Winnie is appalled at first, but she knows how important it is to Kilraven so she gives in. But once they are married, the passion between them flairs.
Review: It's a little hard for me to review this book...and really, I don't have all that much to say...but I can see both sides of this book. I read some really bad reviews, and some really good reviews and I don't think any of them are wrong. This is the type of book that appeals to a certain type of reader. They will love it, but others will hate it...and I don't disagree with they're reasons why.
Diana Palmer writes a certain type of story that either trips your switches or turns them all the way off. She writes out of another time...her heroes aren't very experienced, her heroines are very very naive and unworldly, her language is old-fashioned, her stories very simple. I think Palmer is an old-fashioned type of person and it comes across very clearly in her writing. I believe she began writing in the 1970's and her writing hasn't modernized a bit.
Is that believable? No. And it does frustrate me at times when I read her books. But for me, there's something really appealing about the old-fashioned tone of her stories. Sometimes her heroines are way too unbelievably naive, but I like reading a book now and then where the heroine is a virgin, waiting for marriage, one who doesn't know everything about sex by the time she's twenty. And about heroes who don't have a string a women in their past. I'm a bit of an old-fashioned girl in a sense, and that just appeals to me. But it doesn't for everyone. Which is fine. And it's why Palmer's books really aren't for everyone. If you read one of her stories and hate it, you'll probably hate all the others. But if you're read one and liked it, you'll probably like the others.
Now, as to this book specially...no surprises here. Virginal, naive heroine with small breasts, emotionally cut off hero with a hairy chest, the hero being mean to the heroine at times (though not as bad as in some other books). Very typical DP story.
Glad to finally read Kilraven's book. It didn't quite live up to my expectations, but I enjoyed it. The romance was decent, but not great. The suspense plot was okay...not great, not horrible. It's a simply told plot, like all her other books. I did find it a bit annoying that this plot started like 2 years ago in other books and this was the wrap up. Hard to remember the details from two years ago.
But I mostly liked this book. I was in the mood for a DP story and this one fit the bill well. (less)
I'm rather ambivalent about this book. It didn't suck, but I also didn't find it particularly satisfying either. It was missing that sp...moreRating: 2.5 / 5
I'm rather ambivalent about this book. It didn't suck, but I also didn't find it particularly satisfying either. It was missing that special something to make me really enjoy it.
Series Note: This is the eighth book in a set of books with connected characters. It is not necessary to have read the previous books.
Summary: Lyra Prescott is a film student who inadvertently attracts the attention of some unsavory characters who seem hell bent on causing her harm. Only problem, Lyra has no clue what she has done. Her good friend and roommate Sidney Buchanan offers to ask her FBI brothers for help. They send agent Sam Kincaid to protect Lyra and to help find answers.
From the instant they meet, the two are attracted to each other. And fighting that attraction doesn't seem to be working. Sam has no intention of letting anything permanent develop so he needs to get away from Lyra ASAP. Only problem is he just can't seem to walk away. So they two try to find answers while dealing with Lyra's wacky family and the growing feelings between them.
Review: First off, almost didn't get to finish this book for a while because it turned out the copy that I had was defective. I was reading page 42, went to read page 43 and nothing made sense. Came to find that in my copy, page 283 came after page 42, then went to page 330 or so before going back to page 91. Yeah, that didn't work. I emailed the publisher and they said they would send me a new copy and in the meantime, I was able to get the book from the library so I could finish it right away.
Now, on to the book...
Hmmm...I can't quite think of what to say about this book, other than I found it to be mostly disappointing. Julie Garwood's last few romantic suspense books have been some of the most un-intense suspense's I've read. Very blase and ho-hum. The story has no kick to it. There's a lot of bumbling around and lackadaisical scenes that just didn't do much for me. Every so often, there'd be a plot scene with true purpose that would suck me in, but then all to soon it was over and we were back to the hum-drum stuff. I just found myself rather bored most of the time.
It didn't help that one of the antagonists was utterly annoying. He's supposedly a hitman, but he's the most bumbling, idiotic, obnoxious characters I've ever read about. It was like one of the Three Stooges as the bad guy hitman. I couldn't stand reading about him. The whole thing came off ridiculously stupid. And for whatever unknown reason, Garwood gave him these huge long scenes interspersed through the book and every time one popped up I literally groaned because I didn't want to read about that nitwit.
The romance wasn't all that stellar either. For one thing, the H/h don't even meet until about 100 pages in the book. In a romance book, that just does not work for me. You're taking away serious time for the two characters to get to know each other and to start building a relationship. Even when they did meet, I found I had a hard time getting attached to these two as a couple. I don't really know why. I just wasn't really feeling the romantic element between them, even though I wanted to.
And lastly, the ending was a bit weird. One of the bad guys gets away in this weird scene. Then when Lyra and Sam work things out she says she's keeping her Cali house and Sam says he could transfer to the Cali FBI office. Then suddenly they're moving to Scotland for reasons not quite explained and the whole thing came off a bit weird. I didn't really get it.
*sigh* I don't know. There was just something off about this book. I expected to like it a lot more. I didn't hate it...it wasn't horrible, just rather disappointing and not all that engaging. It wasn't my kind of romantic suspense.(less)
**spoiler alert** Pretty good book. It could have been better with some changes, but in my opinion, it was more enjoyable than the most recent Nerd bo...more**spoiler alert** Pretty good book. It could have been better with some changes, but in my opinion, it was more enjoyable than the most recent Nerd books from Thompson.
There were parts of this book that I really enjoyed, but then there were parts that I didn't. For the first half or maybe 2/3rds, I was really into the book and considered it possibly one of the best Nerd books, 2nd only to my favorite, Nerd Gone Wild. But when I got to about half way through, I started to get a little annoyed and bored. That can mainly be attributed to the fact that over and over you seem to hear about Amanda and her priorities. At times, that just dominated the story and it got boring. There wasn't enough other stuff going on to give the story some variety. Even when there was, the overlying theme was still about Amanda's goals. She just started to get really irritating and came off a bit self-centered. The story would have been helped by some more variety and making Amanda just a smidge softer.
Aside from that, there were great aspects to the story. Thompson has a wonderful sense of humor and I laughed out loud a number of times. The sexuality of the story is wonderfully portrayed and the sex scenes were hot, as usual. Thompson isn't shy about the many aspects of sex that a lot of writers turn a blind eye too. It's refreshing. The whole thing with the sex therapist (while not quite believable) was hilarious. The supporting cast was fabulous. The plot resolution was good. The overall romance was pretty good, though I've read better.
Bottomline with My Nerdy Valentine is that it's a fun, sexy, quirky book that's good for semi-light reading. If you're not a fan of vibrant sexuality, you'll probably be bothered by the book. It's also not high on emotion or plot. I'd compare it to something written by Rachel Gibson or Deirdre Martin, but better written. I think it was better than the last couple of Nerd books, but not as good as the earliest ones.(less)
**spoiler alert** On one level, I really did enjoy the book, but on another, it was just average.
The first VLT book I read was her third Nerd book, Ne...more**spoiler alert** On one level, I really did enjoy the book, but on another, it was just average.
The first VLT book I read was her third Nerd book, Nerd Gone Wild, which I absolutely adored. It was just such a new, unique concept. Most romance books tend to have perfect hero and heroines, but in the Nerd books, VLT gives you some nerdy traits. They're not hardcore nerds, the guys still have some alpha-male traits, and the females are still sexy and pretty. They're just geeky. It's still a great concept. I also enjoy VLT's writing. She writes some great sex scenes, and her language is very readable and fitting modern young adults. The characters think and talk like your average young person. It's nice to read. Plus, she's got a great sense of humor.
So I loved Nerd Gone Wild and went and got her two previous Nerd books, and since then have bought her next ones as soon as they came out. And while I enjoyed all of them, for the most part, the uniqueness wears off, and the whole idea gets a little old. Even so, Nerds Like It Hot was still pretty fun to read. This book, and the Nerd series as a whole, are just fun, light-hearted reads.
Character and romance wise on this one, I don't really have any complaints. I liked all the characters, and the romance - while not particularly cute or sappy - was nice. I believed the chemistry between them. The plot made sense and worked. I loved the whole Nerd-themed cruise idea and how she worked it into the book. That was fantastic. I wouldn't have minded more of that part of the story. And all the supporting characters were great. I loved Cora.
I had perhaps two complaints overall with the book. The first being the lack of any sort of guessing as to who was after Gillian. You know right off the bat who the bad guy is, and you know exactly how he plans to go after her. VLT even does POV scenes with the bad guy that let you know before hand exactly how he plans to attack her. It took any suspense out of the book. I think it would have worked better if she'd been more vague in that area so that the readers had more to ponder and guess about. And I could have done without all those in-depth scenes about the antagonist's activities
My second complaint is just a preference for me. I would have liked to see more down-time scenes between Gillian and Lex. Most of their time together was very specific and generally plot or sex oriented. They didn't have any sort of casual scenes where they just talked to each other or got to know each other. I think if they'd done that, it would have made the possibility of a lasting relationship between Gillian and Lex make just a bit more sense because really, a lot of their relationship was based on some heavy-duty sexual chemistry. If they'd known each other more thoroughly, I would have minded the ending quite so much, or thought it was just a little too abrupt.
Basically, and enjoyable, fun read. Probably what someone would call a "beach read". It's not meant to be serious or plot-y. It's hot and funny with a smidge of suspense. If you've read any of her other Nerd books, you'll like this one.(less)