Monday, April 30, 2012

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Cover Love


As I've just finished The Governess Affair by the fabulous Courtney Milan, I thought it apropos to feature the covers for her entire The Brothers Sinister series.  If you haven't read The Governess Affair, prequel to the upcoming trilogy, I suggest you do so -- immediately.   $0.99 for learning more about Hugo Marshall is 100,000 times worth it!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Review: Waltz This Way by Dakota Cassidy

In her new novel, national bestselling author of Burning Down the Spouse, Dakota Cassidy takes on life, love, and championship ballroom dancing. Get ready to rumba.

Left without a partner...

When former ballroom champion Melina Cherkasov found out that her famous husband was cheating, she was devastated, especially since she was informed by a sleazy reporter on national TV. Thanks to an ironclad prenup and a scumbag ex, Melina has to pack up her dog and her dignity and take refuge in her dad's retirement community in New Jersey.'s time to take the lead.

To make ends meet, Melina puts her dancing shoes to use as an instructor at Westmeyer-a private school for boy geniuses. Teaching a bunch of hormonal teenagers to waltz is trying, but the school's sexy handyman provides ample distraction. Drew McPhee is perfect, except for one thing: He doesn't like dancing. Thankfully, the finesse Drew lacks on the floor is more than made up for by his skills in the bedroom. And after one steamy night, the ballroom diva is the one getting swept off her feet...

I have absolutely loved this series, and I'm sad to see it end.  Ms. Cassidy brings her trademark snark to Melina Cherkasov, so while it's a little similar to what we've seen from the heroines in the two previous books (You Dropped a Blonde on Me and Burning Down the Spouse), Melina is different, despite being the same situation as the other former Ex-Trophy Wives.

What I liked most about Waltz This Way was that as romantic feelings progress for Melina and Drew, the other issues in their respective lives don't simply vanish.  This may be as real as fiction can get.  There is no villain; time keeps on ticking for the cast of characters.  Mistakes from the past arise to disrupt the flow, but all obstacles are overcome, and Melina and Drew grow together as a couple, zany family members included. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Review: The Fireman who Loved Me by Jennifer Bernard

Captain Brody has been badly burned by his ex-wife. When he orders Ryan, his star fireman, to participate in a bachelor auction, little does he know he’s the one who will lose his heart.

Melissa McGuire is a brainy local news producer trying to get her career back on track. She can’t believe she’s being set up by her grandmother, who bid on a date with a fireman at the auction. She prefers the artsy type, not the tough, commanding , though clearly attractive, fire chief.

And yet, they can’t resist each other, especially once her ambitious news anchor assigns her the “Thanksgiving with the Firefighters” news special. Add in her grandmother’s matchmaking and the combined efforts of Captain Brody’s crew…can Brody help being the first bachelor to succumb to love, and the crazy rollercoaster ride of the Curse?

This book had a lot of potential, but unfortunately,  my most hated of hated instrument of internal conflict between the hero and heroine -- the Big Misunderstanding -- makes its presence known in the final third of the book, leaving me with a bad taste in my mouth.  

Melissa McGuire is a news producer who's moved back to San Gabriel from Los Angeles to live with her ailing albeit feisty grandmother, Nelly.  It's Nelly's idea actually to set Melissa up on a date with one of the "Bachelor Firemen."  Nelly's got a lot on her mind, and she doesn't want to have to worry about Melissa's future any longer.  

Captain Harry Brody is not the man Nelly picked for the job, but she thinks he'll do nicely once she sees the sparks pinging between he and her granddaughter.  When Nelly fears all hope is lost, she devises a plan to reunite Brody and Melissa.  

Now, if the book were entirely about Melissa and Brody's chemistry and irritation and eventual romance with one another, I would rate a little higher.  Nelly is a charmer of a secondary character, and while Melissa and her father have issues stemming from Melissa's childhood, we see that he's certainly making an effort to make amends with her.  But plunk down three very unlikeable secondary characters, two in the final third of the book, who are there, I assume, to make Melissa and Brody's respective lives miserable, and that's pushing the limits of my imagination. 

The Fireman Who Loved Me could have been a solid and enjoyable romance.  Sadly, it fell flat for me thanks to secondary characters and of course the Big Misunderstand.   

(A very special thank you to Avon and Harper Collins for providing me with an ARC of The Fireman Who Loved Me.)

Friday, April 20, 2012

Review: The Wolf Who Loved Me by Lydia Dare

A new sexy Regency paranormal trilogy by bestselling
author Lydia Dare features hunky werewolves who need
to learn how to behave in polite society. Can this pack of
‘gentlemen’ be trained in the ways of the ton, or is it too
late to teach an old Lycan new tricks?

Lady Madeline Hayburn is called upon to lend her
respectability and introduce the Hadley brothers to
society. Mr. Weston Hadley admires her from afar, yet his
very presence draws her in...

Unfortunately, I was a little disappointed in this new book from Ms. Dare.  I loved (loved, loved) the original trilogy and could even make some concessions for The Taming of the Wolf, which introduced Dash and the Hadley brothers and spun off into the series featuring the coven.

The Wolf Who Loved Me, while a quick read, was one of those books when after I finish it, I have to ask myself what just happened.  The plot seemed thin, yet one of the best moments of the book -- Weston's shifting in front of Madeline -- didn't offer as much angst as I had hoped.        

(A very special thank you to Sourcebooks Casablanca and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC of The Wolf Who Loved Me.)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Review: About That Night by Julie James


Though Rylann Pierce tried to fight the sparks she felt for billionaire heir Kyle Rhodes the night they met, their sizzling chemistry was undeniable. But after being stood up on their first date, Rylann never expected to see him again. So when she finds herself face to face with Kyle in a courthouse nine years later, she’s stunned. More troubling to the beautiful Assistant U.S. Attorney is that she’s still wildly attracted to him.

Just released from prison, Kyle Rhodes isn’t thrilled to be the star witness in a high-profile criminal case—but when Rylann comes knocking at his door, he finds she may be the one lawyer he can’t say no to. Still as gorgeous and sharp-tongued as ever, she lays down the law: she doesn’t mix business with pleasure. But Kyle won’t give up on something he wants—and what he wants is the one woman he’s never forgotten. . .

One Julie James book per year is NOT enough.   That is my major complaint about this author.   

Nine years earlier, Rylann Pierce was a law school student celebrating with her friends in a bar when she's hit on by Kyle Rhodes.  She has no idea who he is until her BFF tells her.  She allows Kyle to walk her home from the bar, and they make a date.  Kyle doesn't show, though Rylann doesn't know why until the following morning.

We begin About That Night from Rylann's point of view, but it's Kyle and his situation which propels the narrative forward.  He's the connecting thread between A Lot Like Love (book 2) and About That Night.   We learn more about his case, which was a subplot of A Lot Like Love, as well what motivates him, both professionally and personally.

Rylann and Kyle make a solid couple, whether denying their respective attraction, bantering back and forth, or simply being in the same room together.  They are both likeable and genuine and practically combustible once they get together.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Review: The Rogue Pirate's Bride by Shana Galen

Revenge should be sweet, but it may cost him everything...
The Marquis de Valère escaped certain death in the French Revolution and is now an infamous privateer. Out to avenge the death of his mentor, Bastien discovers himself astonishingly out of his depth when confronted with a beautiful, daring young woman who is out for his blood...

Forgiveness is unthinkable, but it may be her only hope...

British Admiral's daughter Raeven Russell believes Bastien responsible for her fiancé's death. But once the fiery beauty crosses swords with Bastien, she's not so sure she really wants him to change his wicked ways...

I was surprised to plow through this final book of the Sons of Revolution series.  We are finally introduced to the third brother, Sebastian, also known as Captain Cutlass.  Sebastian has played Dread Pirate Roberts if you will with the English coastal towns, yet is surprised when a boy stows away on his ship intent on revenge.  Imagine his greater surprise to learn the boy is a woman, the daughter of a British admiral, and wants to kill him for his part in the death of her fiance. 

The Rogue Pirate's Bride is a fast-paced action adventure romance, with Raeven meeting Sebastian thrust for parry at each and every turn.  I loved their interactions and Raeven's continual denial of her attraction to Sebastian.  This is a couple 100% worthy of each other and their enduring adventures.  

(A very special thank you to Sourcebooks Casablanca and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC of The Rogue Pirate's Bride.)     

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Cover Love

USA Today bestselling author Lauren Dane serves up a sweet, sensual, and hot-to-the-touch novel in which one woman’s most intimate desires are stirred by two very special ingredients

Juliet Lamprey is having the time of her life running her successful bakery, TART, when Gideon Carter comes back into her life. Returning home to help his grandfather run the family on the farm, Gideon is back for good. When they meet again, the spark between them is immediate, and it isn’t long before the former childhood friends play catch up in bed.

That’s not good news for local lawyer Cal Whaley. Though the sexually open but strictly monogamous Cal has loved Jules for a long time, he’s hardly ever taken it further than friendship. When he sees her start to fall for Gideon, he knows he has to make his move or risk losing her forever.

Who would have anticipated that all three of them would connect on such an intimate level? The trio’s scalding liaisons take them places they’ve never dreamed. But such an intensely passionate and unusual relationship comes with equally as complicated emotions, and when Jules must suddenly leave town, she wonders if she’ll have a choice to make when she returns.
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