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Monday, March 16, 2015

Review: I've Got My Duke to Keep Me Warm Kelly Bowen

WHERE SECRETS SMOLDER . . .Calm. Cool. Collected. Gisele Whitby has perfected the art of illusion-her survival, after all, has depended upon it. Years ago, to escape an abusive husband, Gisele "disappeared." Now she must risk revealing her new identity to save another innocent girl from the same fate. But she needs a daring man for her scheme, and the rogue in question shows a remarkable talent . . . for shattering Gisele's carefully constructed facade and igniting her deepest desires.

This isn't the first time Jamie Montcrief has awakened naked and confused from a night of drinking. It is, however, the first time a stunningly beautiful woman offers him paymentafterward. Gisele has a business proposition for him, a mission involving cunning thievery and a brazen rescue. How can he say no to a plot this dangerous . . . and a woman this delectable?
Kelly Bowen takes on a serious subject matter and handles it with heart and strength in this highly entertaining read. At times I cried and got angry but I also smiled and laughed out-loud.
Both Gisele and Jamie are wounded characters but stronger than I think even they realize. Their faults just make them all that more appealing to me and I loved watching them dealing with one another. As a fan of character's with believable flaws I enjoy seeing deep into the lead couple and Ms. Bowen has developed two extremely interesting ones. I loved Gisele's loyal friend he kept me in giggles almost whenever he appeared. This was an engrossing story with so many endearing characters. I cannot wait to read more by this author as I loved her style, the details and her characters are just amazing. If you like your stories to have depth while they remain entertaining then this is a must-read.

Review: Vampires Never Cry Wolf by Sara Humphreys

Vampires are nothing but trouble…As far as beautiful vampire Sadie Pemberton is concerned, werewolves shouldn't’t be sticking their noses into New York’s supernatural politics. They don’t know jack about running a city—not even that hot-as-sin new vampire-werewolf liaison who’s just arrived in town.

Werewolves are too sexy for their own good…

The last thing Killian Bane wanted was to end up in New York City playing nice with vampires. Unfortunately, he’s on a mission, and when he encounters the sexiest, most stubborn female vamp he’s ever met, he’s going to have to turn on a little of that wolfish charm…and Sadie’s going to learn a thing or two about what it means to have a wild side…

I loved everything about this book. The complexity of the plot and the myriad of plot threads that Humphreys wove together throughout the story were impressive. There's so much that goes on, and so many characters involved in so much of it, with a rock-solid foundation built by every one of the preceding books, that I would definitely not recommend a reader new to the series start here.

It could be done,Humphreys  has a gift for condensing necessary exposition and fitting it in well with current developments, but so much of the emotional impact would be lost that it just shouldn't be.

I adored the relationship arc and character developments for Killian and Sadie in this book. It wasn't what I would call a traditional romance, really, and that's what I love about Humphreys. She has such a gift for creating stories that fit perfectly with the characters featured in it. Killian and Sadie have known each other for a while, have battled and locked horns, have struggled against their attraction for years, so the relationship between them is in a completely different place and needed completely different things than, .

The pack,the Vampire's, the past, who they are, what they're responsible for, what they can do, the issues each have with how they feel, the threat of not being able to have Sadie, all of that plays a significant role in each character's definition and development, not to mention on their romance. It was frustrating at times (very frustrating at times). It was enlightening at others. There were moments that made me mad and moments that made me laugh. Sometimes it just flat-out broke my heart. For me, though, all the sublimely well-crafted pieces that factored into their personalities and into every moment of their relationship arc worked...perfectly. I loved every second of it.
This book totally led me on an emotional roller-coaster ride, not only with Killian and Sadie , but with the rest of the characters as well. I love the amount of time the author spent on building up the relationships so that we come to care about every single character.
If you haven’t had the opportunity of reading this series I would highly recommend grabbing it now

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Review: The Arrow By Monica McCarty

     As King Robert the Bruce of Scotland plots to retake his English-occupied castles, he needs the stealth and skill of his elite soldiers, the Highland Guard. Fearless and indomitable, no men are more loyal to their king, or more cherished by the women they love.
The talents of legendary marksman Gregor “Arrow” MacGregor are crucial now, as Bruce moves to reclaim his Scottish holdings. Gregor is considered the most handsome man in Scotland, and his fame as an archer is rivaled only by his reputation with the lasses as a heartbreaker. But when his infamous face is exposed during a covert mission, Gregor is forced to lie low. He returns home only to find a new battle waiting: a daring game of seduction involving his now very grown-up and very desirable ward, Cate of Lochmaben

     A born fighter, Cate was clinging to life when Gregor rescued her after a vicious English raid on her village left her mother dead. But five years later, the once scrappy orphan Gregor took under his protection has become a woman. Brave, strong, and skilled in warfare, Cate is determined to lay claim to the warrior who refuses to be trapped. The heat in his eyes tells her she has his attention . . . and his desire. But will Gregor allow his heart to surrender before danger finds them, and the truth of Cate’s identity is revealed?

I thought this was a wonderful historical Scottish romance with lots of historical details that made it so interesting. Cate has been thru a lot in her young life and this is a great story of how she grows up and how she becomes a young woman. The funny things she does and how heartfelt they are, are so sweet and inspiring. Such a great storyline.

I just loved how Cate did some unusual things like combat training which was a no for women.  Then her taking in children that seem abandoned and why she did it was so unusual.  The romance was there and seeing it all unfold was terrific.  Will be reading more books by Monica McCarty for sure.

Review: Stone Cold Lover By Christine Warren

 Bestselling author Christine Warren is back with the second book in a breathtaking new series about the tantalizing line between man and monster....
 Art restorer Felicity "Fil" Shaltis can read the magic in auras, but her fascination with a valuable statue her friend Ella Harrow asks her to locate is purely artistic.  At least until the fierce stone gargoyle comes to life as a powerful, and powerfully hot, immortal warrior, who promptly saves her life from a cultist set on destroying them both.  Suddenly "chiseled good looks" takes on a whole new meaning....

 Spar expected nothing less than one of the seven demons of the Dark to wake him--and instead finds himself the unlikely savior of a spirited human female who now bears the mark of the demon.  As one of seven Guardians created to vanquish the Darkness, Spar has no time for love--but he can't deny that his destiny is clearly entwined with Fil's. To battle the looming threat to humanity, first Spar must save the woman who summoned him....

Stone Cold Lover is the second in the Gargoyles series and is great to read in the series or as a stand alone novel. I thought the romance was amazing and the humor just made it so fun to read. I really liked the characters and how well they were described and all the different intertwined storylines involved.

            I liked how Fil was so enamored with the Gargoyle statue and kept on investigating to figure out what was going on. The romance with Spar was hot and steamy and yet so tender. Such a great book and series.

Review: Romancing the Duke By Jessa Dare

  In the first in Tessa Dare's captivating Castles Ever After series, a mysterious fortress is the setting for an unlikely love...
     As the daughter of a famed author, Isolde Ophelia Goodnight grew up on tales of brave knights and fair maidens. She never doubted romance would be in her future, too.  The storybooks offered endless possibilities.

     And as she grew older, Izzy crossed them off.
     One by one by one.
     Ugly duckling turned swan?
     Abducted by handsome highwayman?
     Rescued from drudgery by charming prince?
            No, no, and.... Heh.

     Now Izzy's given up yearning for romance.
She'll settle for a roof over her head.
What fairy tales are left over for an impoverished twenty-six-year-old woman who's never even been kissed?

   This one.

I am not usually a fan of historical romances but this story was so sweet and fun to read that it made me rethink historical romances. The story was an unusual one, I thought, for a historical romance but it worked.  Izzy and Ransom were quite a pair that clashed and came together in a touching story.

I liked that it was an unusual historical romance in that you wouldn't think that a young woman would move into a castle by herself.  It was so touching how she felt about herself and that she wanted more and was not judging how Ransom was with his faults. This is a great book and I will be looking forward to reading the rest of the series in Castles Ever After.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Review: Owning Violet By Monica Murphy

             I've moved through life doing what's expected of me. I'm the middle daughter, the dutiful daughter.  The one who braved a vicious attack and survived. The one who devoted herself to her family's business empire.  The one who met an ambitious man and fell in love.  We were going to run Fleur Cosmetics together, Zachary and I.

            Until he got a promotion and left me in the dust. Maybe it's for the best, between his disloyalty and his wandering eye.  But another man was waiting for me. Wanting me. He too has an overwhelming thirst for success, just like Zachary--perhaps even more so.  He's also ruthless. And mysterious.  I know nothing about Ryder McKay beyond that he makes me feel things I've never felt before.

             One stolen moment, a kiss, a touch...and I'm hooked.  Ryder's like a powerful drug, and I'm an addict who doesn't want to be cured. He tells me his intentions aren't pure, and I believe him.  for once, I don't care.  I'm willing to risk everything just to be with him. Including my heart.  My soul. My everything.

I think the book was a good one as the first in a series about Fowler sisters. I thought the story was interesting as it told of betrayal, a love triangle and finally Violet was able to love and be a success.

I really liked the parts where Violet was struggling with her past and then was able to trust again.  She wanted to do so much for her family's business and the struggle for that was a good story. I can't wait to read the upcoming series about the other sisters.


DISCLOSURE: Most books that BBL Reviews received are courtesy of the publishers, authors or publicists. In most cases - reviewers get to keep the books they review and choose the books they will review themselves from our database and based on their favorite authors and/or genres. Publishers, authors and publicists are not guaranteed a glowing review just because they have provided a copy of their book for review. Reviews are based on each individual objective opinion and not based on the fact BBL had received a free copy of the work.

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