So far I've liked this one best out of the 4 books of the series that I've read. But it wasn't perfect and it's definitely a book that will not appealSo far I've liked this one best out of the 4 books of the series that I've read. But it wasn't perfect and it's definitely a book that will not appeal to everyone.
Series Note: Fourth book in Banks's "Sweet" series, an erotic romance series with BDSM themes and a common set of characters. I don't necessarily think you have to read the other books before this one, but it wouldn't hurt either.
Summary: Micah Hudson has been running from the tragedy in his life for years, not wanting to remember all the pain and grief from having lost the two most important people in his life. The out of the blue one day, his best friend's little sister, Angelina Moyano, shows up, determined to show Micah she's the woman for him and that she can handle anything he wants from her.
But Micah resists. He still sees Angelina as the teenage her remembers her as. And he doesn't want to risk his heart again. Seeing her, though, he can't resist how much he wants her and can't deny the dominant feelings she brings about him. But Angelina is in danger and he'll have try keep her safe before he can face his feelings for her.
Review: This series is definitely not a series for everything. It deals pretty heavily with BDSM themes and even those of us with high kink factors get a little twitchy reading this series. In this book, there is a D/s theme, fairly moderate compared to what we got with Serena and Damon, but still strong in that Micah gives Angelina to 3 friends for the night to play with. Not that she minded ;) But that more twitch-worthy theme in this one is the whipping. No light stuff here. Some pretty heavy duty whipping. It'll definitely bother a lot of readers. So beware.
But all in all, I think this is the book I've liked most of the 4 I've read so far. It's the one that worked most overall for me. Both Micah and Angelina are interesting characters with a lot of deep emotional pain. In order to release that pain, they've gravitated toward the BDSM scene and whipping. It's not a comfortable thing to read about but I could understand why each did what they did. For the most part. That being said, I did have an issue with Micah's character, or rather how he got to where he was.
The story is that he was married and in a polyamorous relationship with his wife and his best friend. Just from what we read, they seemed to have a pretty normal, if alternative relationship. It left me wondering how Micah, after their deaths suddenly got into the sex club, BDSM scene, being a Dom, and whipping and just everything that he was in this book. It was all very natural for him so it made it hard to understand how there seemed to be such to divergent sides to his character. I would have liked to understand that a bit better.
Other than that, I really didn't have any other major issues with the book. I liked the relationship that built between Micah and Angelina. They seemed like two people who really understood each other and each other's needs. Micah was a total dick sometimes, but you could somewhat understand it.
Plus, there was a bit of a suspense plot in this book, which is always a bonus, in my opinion. Spices up the story and adds some variety. And I love how things worked out in wrapping up the suspense plot. Some serious ass-kicking there. Loved it.
My only other comment...when I read books like this, with such a heavy emphasis on alternative type relationships...I mean, these two were very sexual, very kinky...whipping, bondage, dominance, groups sex, etc...how do they plan to have a family then? How do you reconcile that lifestyle with having kids because when you have kids, they are a factor in you life 24/7. It's just something that always makes me wonder when I read these heavy BDSM stories.
WARNING, this book contains: explicit sex, explicit language, oral sex, anal sex, heavy bondage, D/s, moderately heavy whipping, threesomes, group sex, rather rough sex...and I think that gives you a pretty good picture of what to expect from this book....more
I thought maybe this book would end up being my favorite of the series because of the interesting romantic pairing, but the book didn't quite make itI thought maybe this book would end up being my favorite of the series because of the interesting romantic pairing, but the book didn't quite make it to favorite status. Not that I didn't like the book because I did, but it just didn't hit the exact not I was expecting or wanting.
Series Note: Fourth book in the “Bride Quartet” series by Nora Roberts about 4 best friends who run a wedding planning business. I'd recommend reading the series in order because the characters and situation are so intertwined.
Summary: Parker Brown, of those Connecticut Browns, is the calm, cool, obsessively organized leader of Vows wedding planning business. Her and her 3 friends may be equal partners in the business, but it's Parker who takes the lead, always ready and available for a panicky, neurotic bride who needs help. So it's to some consternation that Parker finds herself attracted to bad boy mechanic Malcolm Kavanaugh.
Mal is nothing like her usual type, but Parker can't deny her attraction and curiosity about the man. And his surprising forwardness in his pursuit of her is intriguing. After some debate, Parker relents and the two fall headlong into an affair that takes both by surprise because it's so much more than an affair. But Mal will have to learn to open up to Parker if he hopes to win her heart.
Review: I've been intrigued by the potential of this book since I first realized what direction Nora Roberts was heading for Parker's romance. Opposites attract romances are always interesting. And that's definitely what you have here with Parker – the anally organized, calm, cool rich girl – and Mal – the bad boy, motorcycle driving mechanic. I couldn't wait to see what happened between these two.
Did it live up to my expectations. Mostly, but not entirely. Opposites attract romances don't always work because sometimes the characters are just too different for a relationship to seem at all realistic. That didn't happen here. Even those Parker and Mal are very different, they fit together well. Mal may have a bit of a bad boy reputation, but at heart he's a really good guy. I really liked Mal a lot. Parker's pretty cool too...maybe a bit too....I don't know...prim? Anal? Over-dedicated? Not sure how to describe it, but I still liked her. And when Mal comes into the picture he gets her to loosen up a bit. Plus, Mal blends in rather well in their little group of friends.
They have some good chemistry together and some sexy scenes to go along with it. I was expecting the relationship to be a little more edgy because of the who good girl/bad boy thing. There was just something a little too calm about how the relationship progressed. I wanted just a smidge more edgy spark. And maybe something a little less predictable for the romantic conflict because there's really no deviation from the predictable path...which is that Parker falls for Mal, wants him forever, but Mal's got some issues related to his less than stellar childhood and has to work his way through them before he can commit to Parker. So I wouldn't have minded something a little less obvious. But even so, it was a nice sweet romance that makes you sigh and feel the happy fluffy bunny feelings.
And of course, as with any Nora Roberts series, you have active involvement of the past characters. I love that they all play big roles and you get to keep getting to know them and learning more about them. You also get to see them planning their wedding and being the crazy brides that they are always having to deal with as part of their job. It's fun to read.
By far, my favorite part of the book was the last chapter. One of the things I'd worried about a little while reading this book was that it was the last book in the series. One of the things you've gotten in this series is the continuation of romances from book to book. In book 1, Mac and Carter get engaged, in the books that follow you get to read about wedding preparations, Parker finding Mac the perfect dress, and then in the last book their wedding. And you get something similar with the other 2 couples. One of the main themes being Parker finding each of her friends the perfect wedding dress. So as you are reading this book, you're realizing you're not going to get any of that for Parker because there is no next book. It was disappointing. But I should have had some faith in Nora Roberts because the last chapter of the book (an epilogue, really) is so absolutely perfect. I adored it and thought it couldn't have been more fitting. Does it give you everything like you got with the other characters? No, there's just not enough room for that, but it did give me the one thing I wanted (which I won't say so I don't ruin the lovely surprise of it). Reading that last chapter leaves you with a nice happy feeling and a sense of coming full circle. I loved it.
So what did I think of the series as a whole? It's a good series. Very true blue contemporary romance. Something hardcore romance fans would probably love. And like just about anything Nora writes these days, the attention to detail, in this case with the wedding planning business, is exception. It was a fun, sweet, romantic series to read. I don't think I'd list it as a favorite among her series, but I enjoyed it....more
Not the best I've read by Opal Carew but not the worst either.
Series Note: This book is a follow up to Carew's book Blush in that it continues the storNot the best I've read by Opal Carew but not the worst either.
Series Note: This book is a follow up to Carew's book Blush in that it continues the story of Tantra expert, J.M. I don't think you have to have read Blush first. It's been ages since I read it and I don't remember much and this one read okay. But it can't hurt to read Blush first.
Summary: Kara Spencer is a sex columnist heading to a sex conference where her editor has asked her to interview Tantra expert Jeremy "J.M." Smith. Kara might think Tantra is a bunch of hooey but she'll do her job. Meanwhile, J.M. has just left a relationship where he was a third in hopes of finding a woman who is just for him. The moment he sees Kara, he knows she's the one.
But Kara doesn't believe in love and as she spends time with J.M. he opens her up to all kinds of sexual possibilities. It's a whole new world for her. J.M. wants more than just some fun, though. Can he convince her that they can have a real future together?
Review: I keep reading Opal Carew's books and sometimes I wonder why. I've read a few of hers that are real stinkers. I think I keep hoping one will be a book that pulls everything together. Because I - mostly - enjoy the alternative sexuality in Carew's books...not always, Six, for example, was just too much. But on the whole I like that she explores different types of relationships and sexuality. So I keep coming back for more because of that. On the other hand, one area that Carew comes up completely lacking is the emotional development of the characters and the relationships. In a lot of the books I've read of hers I feel like I hardly know the characters and feel like the relationships are too based on sex with not enough emotional connection. So I keep hoping to read a book of her that pulls it altogether because I think it would make a great book.
As for this book, it falls in the range mentioned above. Lots of exploration from an alternative sexuality standpoint, and not nearly enough emotional development.
I didn't realize when I started reading this book that it was a follow up to "Blush". A few pages in something struck me as familiar so I poked around the books of hers I'd read and found the connection. In Blush, J.M. helped a woman get past some sexual blocks and entered into an open threesome relationship with the woman and her boyfriend. I reread my review of Blush and one of the things I'd commented on was that I felt J.M.'s status in the relationship was too nebulous, like you didn't know if it'd last or not. Turns out, no. Because this book focuses on him having left that relationship and looking for his own woman.
There's definitely some heat between J.M. and Kara but like I said earlier, the emotional connection, especially from Kara's side, was lacking. They have some great sexual chemistry but I really was just left feeling like I didn't know these characters all that well and definitely didn't feel like they'd connected enough to head into a long-term relationship. I wanted more on that end.
But really, this book is all about the sex. It's what takes up a large majority of the text. Lots and lots of sex. Of all different kinds. You really have to have an open mind when reading this one. There's threesomes, foursomes, stranger sex, role playing, bi-sex, toys, etc etc etc. So you have to have a pretty high kink tolerance to read this one.
It wasn't a terrible book, though. I like it somewhat. I just wanted more from the emotional angle of the book and maybe a little less sex. I think if you've read Opal Carew before you'll have a pretty good idea of what you're getting from this book.
WARNING, this book contains: explicit sex, explicit language, m/f/m sex, anal sex, oral sex, m/m/m/f sex with two of the males being bisexual, toys, bondage, a mild BDSM role-play scene, stranger sex, and I'm sure I'm missing a few things but you get the point, right?...more
(Take two on writing this review...was almost done it when I clicked a wrong button and it go eaten. No fun...)
Hmm...what to say aboutRating: 3.5 / 5
(Take two on writing this review...was almost done it when I clicked a wrong button and it go eaten. No fun...)
Hmm...what to say about this book. Like any Kate Pearce book that I've read, I liked this one, enjoyed reading it and wanted to keep reading more, but at the same time, I wanted something a little bit more from it.
Series Note: No known series connections.
Summary: Ally Kendal is returning to her home town for the first time since she ran away the night she cheated on her almost fiance, Rob Ward, with his best friend, Jackson Smith. Her life is in shambles after her modeling career was destroyed by drug and alcohol abuse. So when her mother passes away, she returns home to sell her mother's house. What she hadn't counted on was that the chemistry would still be there between her and Rob. Or that Rob would want anything to do with her.
But Rob does want her. From the first moment he sees her again, he can't deny that he still wants her. And this time, he's determined not to make the same mistakes again so he invites his best friend Jackson into the mix and the three get involved in a hot and heavy sexual relationship. But no matter that they keep telling each other its only temporary, they all know they're kidding themselves. They'll have to work out the mistakes from the past first, though, and find out who is trying to run Ally out of town, before they can hope to build a future.
Review: I was so excited to read this book. First, because it's by Kate Pearce, and I just love her books. I've yet to read a stinker. Second, because I won a signed copy from the author (Thanks, Kate!) and Third because as anyone who regularly reads my reviews knows, I'm a total and absolute sucker for bi-menage HEA stories, of which this is one.
Did it hit the spot in all area? No, not quite. But I still liked it. On the erotic front, this book is definitely hot. Kate Pearce writes excellent sex scenes and knows how to put them into the book so that the story doesn't just seem like an endless sex fest. This is definitely one steamy book. It may not be to everyone's tastes. There is a bit of a D/s element. Nothing hardcore, but Ally is submissive and Rob definitely enjoys being the Dom and ordering her around in the bedroom. That's just something that may not appeal to everyone. Doesn't bother me in the least ;)
I also enjoyed the fact that Ally is somewhat of an atypical heroine. She's not a cookie cutter do-gooder, or an innocent beauty or whatever. She's definitely flawed - having cheated on Rob with his best friend, then dealing with drug and alcohol addiction. Makes her a bit more real.
There's also a little bit of a suspense element to the story. Nothing major or too involved, but enough that it gives the story some depth. I always like it when an erotic romance throws a suspense type plot into the mix, however mild it may be. In this case, Rob is curious about a decade old death that may not have been suicide, and there's also the fact that someone seems to have it in for Ally. They're not very overwhelming story elements, but they do a nice job of breaking up the story and keeping it from being too much about the sex.
So what didn't work for me? I think it all relates to character depth and the emotional element of the story. There were a couple different issues along this line that I thought could have been done better.
One being the character of Rob. I'm not sure I ever quite got around to liking him. He's a broody rather harsh guy with Dom tendencies. And there's nothing wrong with that, but at the same time there weren't enough glimpses into his softer insides to draw readers to him. It made feeling the romance between him and Ally a little difficult. Their interactions were too acrimonious and I just never thoroughly bought into the love between them.
Which wasn't helped by the fact that I liked Jackson, and Jackson/Ally as a couple much more. Jackson was a cool character. He's a lot like Ally in a lot of ways. And he's got that sexy loner nice guy vibe that I enjoyed. There just seemed to be a much better connection between Ally and Jackson than Ally and Rob.
But I would have liked to know more about Jackson. I thought his character development was a bit neglected. I wanted to know more about his time in the military, what happened to him, what led to his alcohol addiction, and more about his ambiguous sexuality.
I also wanted a bit more out the m/m element of the story. I'll admit to being a bit disappointed that it wasn't a more prominent part of the story. But that's just me and my love for true-blue bi-menage HEAs. The m/m aspect doesn't really come into play until more toward the end of the book and I just would have like it to be a bit more forefront. Something about it was too casually done.
My criticisms aren't meant to mean I didn't like the book. Because I did enjoy it. It's a hot read with some interesting characters and a nice storyline. There were just some elements that I thought could have been done better/differently to make the book really stand out and be excellent.
I'll still be looking forward to Kate Pearce's next book (I think it's the next Simply book. And I just love that series.)
WARNING, this book contains: explicit sex and language, m/f sex, m/m sex, m/f/m sex, oral, anal/ass play, D/s (mild), spanking, bondage (mild), some exhibitionist tendencies...I think that covers most of it......more
I've had this ebook hanging out on my phone for a while, but for some reason kept passing it by. I think there was something about that summary that mI've had this ebook hanging out on my phone for a while, but for some reason kept passing it by. I think there was something about that summary that made me a little unsure if I would like it. Turns out I was wrong. This was a really well done book!
Series Note: No known series connections.
Summary: Taryn Moss and Richard Daniels have been best friends for years, and when both are single, they hook up for a little friends with benefits. Despite the fact that Richard generally prefers men. One night, the two are out having a few too many drinks when they run into sexy hunk Caleb Black. The attraction between the three is instantly sizzling. And it isn't long before Caleb is joining in for a bit of threesome fun.
What starts out as fun, though, grows to more. Caleb is the perfect fit for Taryn and Richard. Each wonders if maybe there could be more. But insecurities begin to rise, with each wondering if the other two will pair out and leave them alone. Throw in a someone who wants revenge on Richard and everything gets tense and confusing. It'll be up to them to work it all out so they can be together.
Review: I've read a lot of bi-menage books, and a lot of erotic romance. Some are good, some are so-so, and some are lousy. Some have the potential to be good but end up as cover-to-cover sex fests. I've read few erotic romances, and even fewer bi-menage books that manage to be super sexy hot and have a solid romance/storyline to go along with it. This was one of those books. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book.
Right from the start this book gets off on a good footing. I loved the beginning scene where Taryn and Richard have had a bit too much to drink when the run into Caleb. They think they must be dreaming because he's so hot and perfect for them. It was an amusing scene and lets you like the characters right off the bat.
Add in some sizzling hot chemistry between the three and you've got a winner. I liked all three of these characters. I don't always care for the friends-to-lovers storyline, but it mostly worked for this book. Though the whole thing about Richard being gay but sleeping with Taryn when he was single was little bit odd.
And I liked that I felt like the author really let us get to know these characters. Too often in some of these shorter erotic romance books the characters are treated a bit like sex objects just there to boink on page. But that wasn't the case in this book. The author did a good job of bringing Taryn, Richard and Caleb to life and making them feel like real people. That was a definite plus for me. I've read a few too many books lately where the characters have been severely underdeveloped.
The author also does really well at delving into some of the characters emotional issues. Taryn is a bit of a loner who tends to avoid connections and feels like she's not wanted. And during the story Richard worries that Caleb and Taryn will pair of and leave him out. Adding these facets really made the book feel more like a romance than some other erotic romances. It just made the book much more well-rounded and it made sure you didn't get drowned out on all the (really hot) sex.
Then there was also the little bit of suspense plot thrown in. Nothing too big, but just a little issue of something with a beef with Richard. It was really a necessary aspect of the story, but yet it fit in perfectly. It was another aspect that made the story more full-bodied.
Oh, can't forget all the smokin' hot sex, right? Cuz there was definitely some of that going on.
Pretty much every aspect of this book worked for me. It definitely qualifies as one of the better bi-menage stories that I've read. Not the best (that goes to Lorelei James's Rough, Raw and Ready), but definitely one of the top few. I'm glad I decided to read it!
WARNING, this book contains: explicit sex and language, oral sex, anal sex, m/f, m/m, m/f/m, bi-menage HEA, toys, a bit of D/s, some bondage, clamps...but nothing really over the top...more
It's rare for me to read an erotic romance that tweaks the wrong buttons, that inspires such conflicted feelings. This book definitelyRating: 2.5 / 5
It's rare for me to read an erotic romance that tweaks the wrong buttons, that inspires such conflicted feelings. This book definitely does that.
Series Note: Second book in Banks's "Sweet" series...and erotic romance series with a BDSM theme among connected characters. You probably don't need to read the first book first.
Summary: Serena James runs a business that caters to people getting their fantasies...whether it be to be a head chef in a top restaurant, or to be a princess on a cruise ship. But Serena has never delved into her own fantasies...until now. Her darkest desire is to be a man's slave, to cater to his every whim and be completely under his control.
Enter Damon Roche, a man who has searched for a woman to be completely his. He's almost given up hope until Serena enters the picture. He volunteers to give her her fantasy, knowing it'll only be for a short time. But once she's his, Damon doesn't want to give her up.
Review: Hmmm...well...what to say about this book? I've read a lot of erotic romances with a lot of different kinks in them. And I'm generally not bothered by them. I have a high kink tolerance and like I said in my review for book 1 in this series: as long as everyone is consenting, of legal age, and not harming anyone else, I don't care what people do. So while I'm not going to say that the sexual element of this book is wrong, it definitely didn't do it for me and made me uncomfortable. And yet, at the same time, I liked the characters, thought there was still a decent romance and in a general sense, I liked the book.
The basis of this story is that Serena wants to be, for lack of better words, a slave to a man. I've read a lot of BDSM themed books before, but I think this is the first one that went full slave theme. And I can't say I liked it once I got into the story. Reading about a woman who is totally under a man's control - he told her when to dress, what to wear, how to act, etc - kinda skeeved me out. I mean, Damon has Serena sit on the floor with her head in his lap while he petted her and did his work. He even had a pallet on the floor in his office for her and all that. It just did not work for me. It was too much. It crossed a line for me from hot erotic romance to...something else. I wasn't turned on by it at all. And I admit I have a hard time understanding why someone would want a relationship like that. For me, it's one thing to want a take charge man, and another thing to be a man's slave.
And yet...like I said above...there were still things I liked about the book. Somehow, I still liked Damon. I liked him in the first book, and despite his need to be a slave master in this book, I still liked him. For the most part, he's a kind, generous, caring man. Who just happens to want a slave relationship with a woman. Weird.
Then there's Serena...hard to say what I thought about her. I'm not sure I ever was able to understand why she wanted to be a slave. I think the lack of understanding there took something away from the story a bit. But overall I liked her and I think Banks's did a good job exploring her conflict over what she wanted. And I liked the business she ran. Very unique
Plus, you get more of the secondary characters who are all fascinating. I'm really looking forward to seeing how things play out with Julie and Nathan. Should be interesting.
WARNING, this book contains: explicit sex, explicit language, anal sex, toys, BDSM...heavy emphasis on D/s slave element and bondage, spanking, whipping, public sex and D/s acts, involved of others in those acts, humiliation....definitely not a book for everyone. If you are even remotely not a fan of BDSM you will not like this book....more