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Saturday, February 28, 2015

Review: Arctic Bound by Tigris Eden

There are secrets in even the smallest of towns...
Nerina Simpson fled the streets of New York City, hoping to find solace outside the small town of Talkeetna, Alaska. Physically scarred from a fire that claimed both her parents, Nerina keeps to herself while she tries to put the darkness of her life behind her. 
When a winter storm forces her into town, she collides with Victor Canidae. An arrogant man who makes it no secret that he and everyone else in the town want her to leave. 
Headstrong, and refusing to back down, Nerina finds herself in trouble when her two, four legged companions get lost in a storm, landing her in the path of an angry bear hell bent on taking her life. Until a mysterious white wolf comes to her rescue.
When she wakes up in a warm cave, the last person she expected to see is Victor. Stuck in a cave until the storm passes the two decide there is only one way to pass the time, and quickly when you’re getting physical.

Ms. Eden brings us an amazing story.  Artic Bound kept me guessing!  Dosen’t happen often but I was stunned speechless a few times with plot twists I never saw coming.
Nerina, is a hiding in a small cabin in Alaska.  She was badly burned in a fire and her scars are both physical and emotional, however, she is strong and independent.  She has a secret past that unfolds through the novel. She is working on living and healing in the harsh climates of Alaska, with the two dogs the previous owner had.
Victor is a werewolf and is meant to be the pack Alpha come spring.  He is all Alpha and a lot of jerk at times.  He has the future of the Pack on his shoulders and he takes it seriously.  I was happy when we got to see him care – he cares about his family, friends, and his pack.  But, can he care for Nerina.
The two together is combustible!  They will make you laugh and make you want to smack some sense into them now and again.  Altogether awesome!
I will note this novel isn’t for the meek.  It is full of adventure, arguments, fighting, it has rope play (which I must say was vivid), BDSM and hot as the 4th of July!  I look forward to reading the rest of the series to see what adventures and passion flair for the Alaska Pack.

Review: Hope burns by Jaci Burton

Molly Burnett dreads returning to her hometown of Hope for her sister’s wedding, especially knowing she’ll have to endure a weekend with the one man she never wants to see again. It’s only a couple of days, so Molly will try to forget her painful past with high school sweetheart Carter Richards. Because despite the bitter memories, she still can’t forget what they once meant to each other.

But when Molly is forced to extend her stay, Carter sees this as his second chance to do things right, to start over again with the only woman he’s ever loved. This time, he isn’t going to let Molly run. Together they’re going to confront the past and put it behind them, and hope for a future as bright as the flame that still burns hot between them. 

This book was a really sweet read.  I enjoyed all the depth and feeling put into this book.

Molly and Carter had a long history together.  Molly leaves under rough circumstances and only returns to visit.  When her mother is injured, Molly decides to stay in Hope to help.  Molly has her issues and deals with them the best way she knows-- keep everyone at a distance with just fun..

Carter sees Molly staying as a way of mending fences and a way to try and get her back in his life.  He has made his home in Hope and loves it.  Two people in love and one doesn't want to admit it.  He works on her and tries to tear down those walls.  He is determined to make her see reason and to make her see his love for her.

Molly and Carter are in my opinion, a match made in heaven or should I say Hope.  I really enjoyed this book for the beginning to the end.

Review: Only Enchanting by Mary Balogh

Flavian, Viscount Ponsonby, was devastated by his fiancée’s desertion after his return home. Now the woman who broke his heart is back—and everyone is eager to revive their engagement. Except Flavian, who, in a panic, runs straight into the arms of a most sensible yet enchanting young woman.

Agnes Keeping has never been in love—and never wishes to be. But then she meets the charismatic Flavian, and suddenly Agnes falls so foolishly and so deeply that she agrees to his impetuous proposal of marriage.

When Agnes discovers that the proposal is only to avenge his former love, she’s determined to flee. But Flavian has no intention of letting his new bride go, especially now that he too has fallen so passionately and so unexpectedly in love. 

Mary Balogh is one of the main reasons I became such a Regency romance fan! In the latest installment of her Survivors' Club series we get to see Flavian, Viscount Ponsonby get what he deserves. I will admit that I did have my doubts when he proposes to Agnes. I truly did not wish to see her hurt and yet I didn't want to see him suffer either but without giving anything away I loved how this whole situation worked out. Agnes is such a likable heroine and I kept hoping she would get passion and love in her life, I want her sister to also find the same. Ms. Balogh has such an amazing storytelling skill, she's an unassuming talent and I never regret picking up her novels. However this book should come with a slight warning; sleep will be avoided while readers finish in one sitting, but really it was worth all the yawning at work to get to the perfect ending.

Review: Secrets of a Scandalous Heiress by Theresa Romain

One good proposition deserves another...
Heiress Augusta Meredith can't help herself-she stirs up gossip wherever she goes. A stranger to Bath society, she pretends to be a charming young widow, until sardonic, darkly handsome Joss Everett arrives from London and uncovers her charade.
Augusta persuades Joss to keep her secret in exchange for a secret of his own. Weaving their way through the treacherous pitfalls of a polite world only too eager to expose and condemn them, they begin to see that being true to themselves is not so long as they're true to each other...

Theresa Romain sure knows how to shake up a traditional historical romance story. I'm still smiling over the nerve of Augusta Meredith! I mean I totally understood her reasoning but I can't believe she had the guts to go through with her charade. She and Joss have so much in common and yet they are the exact opposite in so many ways. Their chemistry is amazing and entertaining. I loved watching the two of them interact, it was witty and passionate and over-all endearing. This is a fun and at times funny and a little mystery was a bonus. If you are looking for a story that encourages you to find yourself and embrace your uniqueness this is one for you. I'll be looking forward to reading more by this author to see if she can keep me giggling out loud in her other offerings.

Review: Once Upon a Christmas Kiss by Manda Collins

ONCE UPON A CHRISTMAS KISS is a sexy, romantic holiday e-novella, set in the world of Manda Collins's bestselling Wicked Widows trilogy. 

When Sir Lucien Blakemore arrives at his cousin’s estate for a week-long Christmas party, he’s shocked to see Miss Winifred Nightingale among the other guests. Employed by his neighbor back in Yorkshire, the governess with the lovely eyes has always seemed off limits, but she’s visiting here as a guest—and there’s nothing like a little mistletoe to make the spirits bright…
Miss Winifred Nightingale never dreamed a holiday visit with her sister would lead to both ladies spending Christmas as the local lord’s guests. But the big surprise is when she finds the handsome Sir Lucien Blakemore staying there too. The attraction between them is undeniable, but will an old nemesis and a party guest bent on mischief make their first kiss under the mistletoe their last?

I loved this beautiful holiday story, it gave me the warm feelings of the season and I believe this will become a true tradition for me and I will find myself reading it every year. Winifred and her sister are both such deserving heroines and I loved watching them interact with the other members of the house party, especially when some were just so unwelcoming. Sir Lucien is the type of man most women dream of, he knows what he wants and he plans on getting exactly that. The connection between the hero and heroine was undeniable and so very engaging to witness. I would like to see some of these characters make reappearances in upcoming adventures because whether I was annoyed with them or enjoying their pleasant personalities. If you are looking for a heartwarming tale this holiday season, pick this one up!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Review: Viscount of Vice by Shana Galen

Whispers and secrets are no match for love...
Henry Flynn, the new Lord Chesham, still blames himself for the disappearance of his younger brother when they were children. That incident destroyed his family, and now he's on a path of self-destruction that no one can interrupt...
Lady Emma Talbot can't stand watching the man she secretly loves destroy himself little by little. She's determined to show him that no one holds him culpable, before it's too late. But Emma doesn't know what really happened to Flynn on that fateful day long ago, so what chance does she have of saving him from himself?

Shana Galen delivers yet another charming read with this quick and lovely historical novella. This story had it all; mystery adventure and romance. Emma knows what she wants and she's smart enough to know how to go about it. Flynn is adorable in that wounded soul fashion that makes men so irresistible. They are so well suited that I couldn't help but turn the pages to see what would happen next. Of course there were a few moments of doubt thrown in but that's what keeps everything interesting! This was a truly delightful introduction to a new series and I cannot wait to dive in to it. I have never been disappointed by anything I've read by this author and this short story was no exception. There was a solid plot a beautiful Bath setting and some well-developed characters. If you are looking for an easy entertaining story this is a must-read.

Review: An Unsuitable Match by Sasha Cottman

The Favorite Heiress…

Once engaged to the future Duke of Strathmore, the beautiful Lady Clarice Langham now finds herself in the humiliating position of celebrating his marriage – to another woman. As a result of the scandal, it seems her reign as London's most eligible debutante has come to an end. But things begin to look up when handsome and charming rake David Radley makes it clear that, at least as far as he's concerned, she's still the catch of the season.

The Illegitimate Son…

The eldest son of the Duke of Strathmore, David Radley has been raised alongside his father's legitimate children. But while he is generally received as part of the family, not everyone thinks he should be, and especially not Clarice's father, the Earl of Langham, who forbids her from having anything to do with him.

An Unsuitable Match…

David's been in love with Clarice for years, and it isn't long before the attraction between them develops into something deeper. Yet he senses Clarice is hiding something and until she reveals her secret, she won't be free to follow her heart. Despite everything, David will not give up on Clarice, not even when another seems set to claim her…

Is it horrible that I wanted to pop Clarice's father right in the nose from the first time the man opened his mouth and with every word he uttered I wanted to smack him harder. David Radley might be illegitimate but his family does not treat him any differently and he is such a fabulous hero. I loved watching Clarice blossom under his attention and it fair broke my heart seeing her guilt. This was a lovely Regency romance and I look forward to reading many more from this talented author. I'm also looking forward to visiting with some of the characters introduced in this story as I felt many became friends of mine. I thoroughly enjoy making connections with not just the leading couple but all the characters in the story and whether I disliked them or wanted to spend countless hours gossiping with them, the fact that I could relate to them made the story all the more enjoyable. I loved the heartwarming family togetherness of this story and I highly recommend this if you are looking for a feel-good tale.

Review: Once Upon a Plaid by Mia Marlowe

A wife may be courted, too. . .

Many would count Katherine Douglas fortunate indeed. Laird William Douglas is broad-shouldered, gentle-handed, everything a lass could dream. But after four years of marriage, Katherine still knows little of what goes on in his heart. And she has yet to bear him an heir. The distance between them is too great--and so she flees over the snowy highlands to Glengarry Castle, home of her childhood, to set her husband free. 

But William won't let his wife slip away without a fight. Before long, he's at her father's threshold himself, witness to the rumbles of discontent in Glengarry, the bright joy of Yuletide at a family hearth, and the hidden needs of his own beloved. . .

A holiday Highland historical, oh my! Mia Marlowe has an amazing talent when it comes to bringing Scottish romance to life and with this tale of rekindled romance she outdoes herself. The deep emotions and history between the leading couple is both heart-warming and heart-wrenching. Katherine and William so obviously belong together but day-to-day problems come between them and what better way to bring back the love than with the magic of the Yuletide season. As with every story I've read by Ms. Marlowe the details and descriptions bring to live a time and place so many dream of. She weaves scene, setting, people and perspective so seamlessly that before I know it I'm once again turning the last page on one of her lovely stories. Her skill took me on an emotional rollercoaster ride as I truly become entrenched in what happens with this couple. Do yourself a huge favor if you are a fan of this genre, get this one and give yourself one fantastic gift.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Review: Madeleine's Christmas Wish by Ella Quinn

The bachelors in Ella Quinn’s Marriage Game series make a habit of resisting the irresistible. But during the season for giving, surrendering to temptation may be the greatest gift of all…

A French spy, Georges, Marquis Cruzy-le-Châtel, has lived in England for years, sacrificing his life for his country—but not his heart. For he’s never been able to forget his childhood friend, Madeleine. And now, in her hour of need, he is there to rescue her…

The victim of a ruthless statesman, Madeleine, Comtesse du Beaune, has been abducted and sent to England to work in a brothel. Her greatest wish is to return home for Christmas, and her only hope of it is to marry Georges—though she will be his wife in name alone. Yet as they steal across the snowy countryside, Georges decides to woo her—with kisses that melt the winter’s frost and leave her longing for a holiday miracle…

Ella Quinn gifts readers with a fast-paced historical holiday tale. Madeleine is so devoted to her family that it was near impossible to not feel for her and the situation she found herself in and Georges is such an honorable, steadfast gentleman. They both are engaging characters and are a fine match, their interactions kept me turning the pages to see just what would become of them. I'm a fan of obscurity with my romance and there was just enough in this short story to add the right amount of intrigue. Like most traditional Regency romances this is a beautifully sweet story with just a touch of heat to warm readers up on a cold winter night. If you are a fan of seasonal stories this one is a great choice and because it is a novella you can start and finish it in one night without losing sleep before being rewarded with your Christmas miracle.

Review: Death and the Redheaded Woman by Loretta Ross

Next Up for Auction: Murder
When auctioneer Wren Morgan begins cataloging the contents of the Campbell mansion, she’s unprepared to find something that can’t be appraised—a dead man. After the body turns out to be a criminal with ties to a recent jewel heist, Wren comes face-to-face with Death Bogart. A private eye and part-time bounty hunter, Death is searching for the stolen jewels needed to convict a murderer.
Death finds a friend and willing ally in Wren, but they aren’t the only ones searching for treasure. Two ruthless men are also on the hunt, and they will do anything to eliminate the competition. To survive, Death and Wren must solve two mysteries spanning a century and a half and outwit a pair of cold-blooded killers.

Okay as a Ginger I just knew I had to read this book and I'm so glad that I did if I could give it a higher rating I would. This story gave me so many of the things I love in a great story; a fabulous location, well-developed and entertaining characters, more than one mystery, laughter, tears, history and heartache and above all a happy ending!  Death Bogart is a gritty, authentic hero and I think I lost my heart to him faster than the heroine did. Wren is just so darn likable that I can't imagine anyone not wanting to get to know as much as possible about her. I loved watching her interact with her lovable coworkers. I enjoyed everything about this story, including the jerkwad who bothered Wren because you always love to see the jerkwad get his payback. I certainly hope there will be additional adventures for this highly entertaining duo because I've already added them to the top of my must-read list.

Review: Since I Saw You by Beth Kery

When enigmatic billionaire Ian Noble sets Lin the task of “taming” his brilliant yet half-savage brother Kam Reardon, she eagerly accepts. She’s more than curious about the solitary genius and everything she’s heard about him. During their electric first meeting, her fascination increases a hundredfold. Kam practically oozes raw sex appeal. Lin is interested...very interested. But does her intense attraction and willingness to go places with him she’s never gone before in the bedroom really have to do with Kam? Or is her carefully hidden desire to blame for wanting a man she knows she can never have?

An elusive outsider, Kam avoids intimacy, yet never shies away from satisfying his erotic appetites. But there’s something different about Lin—a reserve he’s anxious to break. She’s a woman he’s eager to take his time with…and possess completely. A sophisticated beauty like her would never want him anywhere but in bed, but he finds himself unable to resist her.

Immediately Lin’s smooth facade is undone by Kam’s overwhelming masculinity and by his irresistible erotic demands—a lesson in subjugation that leaves Lin confused, reeling, and open to things she never thought possible. Now, as the unpredictable nights between them grow darker, Lin and Kam are certain of only one thing: they’re made for each other. 

Holy hotness! This is one unbelievably scorching romantic story. I will admit that I'm not a fan of racy erotic novels however the fact that this one had an actual well-thought out story, superb characters and skilled writing completely won me over. Lin is such a multi-layered character which made it very easy to relate to her because we aren't all simply one thing or another we all have various bits and pieces that combine to make us who we are. I enjoyed watching her struggle with her attraction and growing feelings for Kam and how strong she was in facing the new emotions she was facing. Kam was an amazingly subtle presence that was just larger than life. He seemed to take over every scene he was in and eclipsed everyone else except for Lin who definitely held her own with him. If you are looking for some spice with your romance this one is a great choice!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Review: Cowboy Boots for Christmas by Carolyn Brown

'Tis the season for...
All he wants for Christmas is peace and quiet...
After two tours in Afghanistan, retired Army sniper Finn O'Donnell believes his new ranch outside the sleepy little town of Burnt Boot, Texas, is the perfect place for an undisturbed holiday season. But before he can settle in, an old friend shows up looking for protection and a place where nobody knows her name.
But that's going to take a miracle...
Callie Brewster must relocate to protect her young nephew, Martin, and the only person she trusts is her old Army friend, Finn. Burnt Boot seems like the perfect place to be anonymous, but it turns out a small town with big drama is no place to hide...

I have never been disappointed with a book by Carolyn Brown and this one is no exception to the rule. I felt as if Ms. Brown wrote this story just to provide me with an extra special and sexy Christmas gift, I mean seriously who doesn't want a hero like Finn? And I mean I can't decide if I want to be Callie Brewster or be her best friend. She's an amazing woman and the fact that Finn recognizes that makes him all the more worthy in my eyes. I loved that there were feuding families in this story because magical holiday stories need obstacles to overcome. This truly is the ultimate contemporary Christmas read, in fact I believe it deserves to be read all year round. I know that this is one of the books I will reread over and over again because I can't imagine not enjoying it as much the second and third times as I did the first. Thank you Ms. Brown for sharing your amazing talents and leaving me with such a fabulous feeling of warmth and well-being.

Review: The Prince Who Loved Me by Karen Hawkins

Romance sizzles in this Cinderella story set in Scotland, the first in a sparkling new spinoff series from New York Times bestselling author Karen Hawkins.

Prince Alexsey Romanovin enjoys his carefree life, flirting—and more—with every lovely lady who crosses his path. But when the interfering Duchess Natasha decides it’s time for her grandson to wed, Alexsey finds himself in Scotland, determined to foil her plans. Brainy, bookish, and bespectacled, Bronwyn Murdoch seems the perfect answer—she isn’t at all to the Duchess’s taste.

Living at the beck and call of her ambitious stepmother and social butterfly stepsisters, Bronwyn has little time for a handsome flirt—no matter how intoxicating his kisses are. After all, no spoiled, arrogant prince would be seriously interested in a firm-minded female like herself. So…wouldn’t it be fun to turn his “game” upside down and prove that an ordinary woman can bring a prince to his knees…

Karen Hawkins takes a tried and true tale and turns it in to her very own beautiful story with this Scottish Cinderella retelling. I am never disappointed when I pick up one of her stories and even though this particular book does not have a Highlander hero Prince Alexsey is nothing to scoff at. Bronwyn was so easy to relate to and I just wanted everything to work out for her. I find that the older I get I enjoy spinster-stories and the smart and sweet young woman was perfect for the foreign prince. The witty dialogue and interaction between these two is fabulous. I loved this story for its heartwarming and fun easy reading pleasure. If you are looking for a pleasant read that will keep you smiling long after the last page is done than this is a fantastic choice.

Review: Season For Desire by Teresa Romain

Properly Wicked

Like her four sisters, Lady Audrina Bradleigh is expected to marry a duke, lead fashion, and behave with propriety. Consequently, Audrina pursues mischief with gusto, attending scandalous parties and indulging in illicit affairs. But when an erstwhile lover threatens to ruin her reputation, Audrina has no choice but to find a respectable husband at once. 

Who would guess that her search would lead her to Giles Rutherford, a blunt-spoken American on a treasure hunt of his own? When a Christmas snowstorm strands the pair at a country inn, more secrets are traded than gifts--along with kisses that require no mistletoe--and Audrina discovers even proper gentlemen have their wicked side. . .

Teresa Romain jumps right in to the adventure and then follows up with even more action and intrigue. I loved the connection between Lady Audrina and Giles. And seriously Giles father just about won me over himself. I had a little trouble warming up to Audrina, that was until her father opened his mouth and then I would have helped her with any impropriety she wanted to partake in. I thoroughly enjoyed the treasure hunt as it has been far too long since I've partaken in one, sometimes being and adult really does spoil ones fun! This was a wonderful little Christmas gift and there is nothing more than I like better than a beautiful historical holiday romance especially when the leading couple are so well suited and the descriptions are so vivid. Pick this one up if you are longing to curl up in front of the fireplace and let the holiday magic embrace you.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Review: Sinfully Ever After by Jayne Fresina

Teaching scandalous young men a lesson? This is not your typical book club
To Rebecca Sherringham, all men are open books-read quickly and forgotten. Perhaps she's just too practical for love. The last thing she needs is another bore around-especially one that's supposed to be dead.
Captain Lucius "Luke" Wainwright turns up a decade after disappearing without a trace. He's on a mission to claim his birthright and he's not going away again until he gets it. But Becky and the ladies of the village Book Club Belles Society won't let this rogue get away with his sins. He'll soon find that certain young ladies are accustomed to dealing with villains.

I love the Book Club Belles! Rebecca might not be everyone's favorite heroine but she's definitely entertaining. She is spoiled and overly demanding and truthfully rather too full of herself at most times but we all know and love at least one person like this don't we? Luke was rather and odd choice of match for her at first thought but then as I realized the correlation between this story and Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility I believe the author did a rather magnificent job of making the tale her own. I loved seeing some of my favorite characters from the first installment and meeting some new ones and I am looking forward to the next adventure in this series. If you are a fan of spunky historical heroines with modern attitudes then this one will definitely be just your cup of tea.

Review: Earls Just Want to Have Fun by Shana Galen

His heart may be the last thing she ever steals...
Marlowe is a pickpocket, a housebreaker-and a better actress than any professional on the stage. She runs with the Covent Garden Cubs, a gang of thieves living in the slums of London's Seven Dials. It's a fierce life, and Marlowe has a hard outer shell. But when she's alone, she allows herself to think of a time before-a dimly remembered life when she was called Elizabeth.
Maxwell, Lord Dane, is intrigued when his brother, a hired investigator, ropes him into his investigation of the fiercely beautiful hellion. He teaches her to navigate the social morass of the ton, but Marlowe will not escape so easily. Instead, Dane is drawn into her dangerous world, where the student becomes the teacher and love is the greatest risk of all.

This was one of those stories where I'm so glad I didn't let my first impression talk me out of abandoning. I admit I was definitely not a fan of the heroine from the start but eventually I grew to really like her and I loved how her personality was revealed in layers. I also wasn't sure if they were a good match. But Shana Galen is a magically story teller and soon I couldn't imagine these two not being together. Lord Dane is an upstanding gentleman, maybe even what you could call priggish and it was interesting to see the influence Marlowe has on him, and vice versa. The supporting characters bring a depth to the story and an amazing amount of entertainment and enjoyment. I have become a huge fan of this author and I know that she is going to provide me with a skillfully written descriptive historical romance full of details and images I will remember long after the last page has been finished. If you are looking for a well-balanced, beautifully written tale this is a must-read.

Review: Full Throttle by Julie Ann Walker

Steady Hands, Cool Head...

Carlos "Steady" Soto's nerves of steel have served him well at the covert government defense firm Black Knights Inc. But nothing has prepared him for the emotional roller coaster of guarding the woman he once loved and lost.

Will All He's Got Be Enough?

Abby Thomson is content to leave politics and international intrigue to her father-the President of the United States-until she's taken hostage half a world away, and she fears her father's policy of not negotiating with terrorists will be her death sentence. There's one glimmer of hope: the man whose heart she broke, but she can ever tell him why...

As they race through the jungle in a bid for safety, the heat simmering between Steady and Abby could be a second chance for them-if they make it out alive.

Julie Ann Walker really knows how to pack in the action and her latest book also packs in the heat! I loved the main couple in this story and although they both seemed larger than life they were also so very realistic as if you would have no problem becoming friends with either of them. They both have strong personalities and they balance one another which made for interesting scenarios for the reader. I enjoyed how the story is told through various sets of eyes, giving me so many points of views. There were also a few characters introduced that I'm keeping my fingers crossed will make a reappearance in some future works. This was a page turning, rollercoaster ride full of passion and conflict, combat and commitment. If Alpha male heroes and smart, sweet heroines make you happy when they are evading enemies, dodging bullets, thwarting terrorists and igniting fires.