Beach House for Rent

Beach House for Rent
Beach House for Rent by Mary Alice Monroe

Saturday's Series Spotlight

Saturday's Series Spotlight
Saturday's Series Spotlight

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Crazy Love You by Lisa Unger- A Book Review

 
 
Darkness has a way of creeping up when Ian is with Priss. Even when they were kids, playing in the woods of their small Upstate New York town, he could feel it. Still, Priss was his best friend, his salvation from the bullies who called him “loser” and “fatboy”…and from his family’s deadly secrets.

Now that they’ve both escaped to New York City, Ian no longer inhabits the tortured shell of his childhood. He is a talented and successful graphic novelist, and Priss…Priss is still trouble. The booze, the drugs, the sex—Ian is growing tired of late nights together trying to keep the past at bay. Especially now that he’s met sweet, beautiful Megan, whose love makes him want to change for the better. But Priss doesn’t like change. Change makes her angry. And when Priss is angry, terrible things begin to happen…


My Review:

  Crazy Love YouCrazy Love You by Lisa Unger
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Crazy Love You by Lisa Unger is a 2015 Touchstone publication. I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher and Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Wow, Lisa Unger really knows how to weave a twisted tale doesn't she? I'm still coming out of my book coma after finishing this one.

Ian Paine is doing pretty well for himself. He is a graphic novelist, making an above average salary, rents a loft in New York and could have his work optioned for the big screen To put the cherry on the cake, he has met the love of his life, Megan.

But, Ian has a few unresolved issues from his childhood that threaten his current state of contentment. For starters there is Priss, his childhood friend, his avenger and a prominent character in his graphic novels. The problem is Ian is growing up emotionally, finally, and Priss is none too happy to find that Ian has outgrown her, especially after all she has done for him.

For Ian was that kid in school who was easily bullied. An only child, overweight, sheltered, and whose mother was mentally ill.

“Ah gym class. Remember it? Institutionally sanctioned torture for society's misfits. God help you in America if you are not thin and fit, attractive, athletic, and coordinated, driven to win at any cost. God help you if you are broken or sad, or even just cerebral, or artistic, or just want to be left alone. You will be told in a million ways- directly, subliminally, - just how deficient you are. But nowhere will that message be delivered with more naked brutality than in a middle school gymnasium.”

Such was Ian's tortured life in “The Hallows” while growing up. He is still man child in many ways until he meets Meagan. Meagan makes him want to be a better man, to grow up, to be the kind of guy she deserves.

“ Love is like an anesthetic, isn't it? It dulls all the pain, pushes back your worries, quiets your inner demons. Your ten feet tall and bulletproof.”

But, it seems that Ian still can't pull everything together for Meagan. He still indulges in drugs and drink, and there is that every pressing problem with Priss, who is getting more and more aggressive as Ian becomes more deeply involved with Meagan.

So, you think you have if figured out, then you don't, then you do, then you don't. Trust me, you won't figure it out.

Flashbacks provide insight into Ian's dark and morose background, his frequent violent outburst, his relationship with his parents, details about “The Hallows”, and how through the years anytime he found himself in a bind, Priss was always there to rescue him.
Is Priss real? A figment of his imagination? An hallucination? The product of an unstable mind? Does the insanity run in the family? A dual personality? Just a character in his novels?

I really like this book because of it's imaginative storyline and how it kept me guessing and thinking about the characters. It was pitch perfect pacing, with taut, heart stopping suspense, leading the reader to a pat conclusion, only to rank the rug out from under you time and time again.


This novel is relentless. Suspenseful, atmospheric, dark, psychological, but through all the fog and haze of what is real and what isn't, there is one thing that stands out to me. Love. Yes, love. If not for that powerful emotion the conclusion of this book would have much different.
You will think about this book long after you finish it. Even as I write this review certain details are still running through my mind making me appreciate the story even more.
4.5 rounded to 5



Lisa Unger is the New York Times and internationally bestselling author of CRAZY LOVE YOU

IN THE BLOOD, now in paperback, was a Goodreads Choice Awards (2014) Nominee for Best Book, Amazon Best Book of the Month, Suspense Magazine Best Books of 2014, Sun Sentinel Best Mystery Novels of 2014 and Indie Next Pick!

Her novels have been named top picks by the Today show, Good Morning America, Walmart Book Club, Harper's Bazaar, Family Circle, Good Housekeeping, Washington LifePublishers WeeklyNew York Daily News, Indie Next and Amazon (Book of the Month, Top Ten Thriller of the Year.)  More than 1.9 million copies of her books have been sold in 26 languages.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Kiss Me Hello by Grace Burrowes- Review + Giveaway

Book Information
 
Book: Kiss Me Hello
Author: Grace Burrowes
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Release Date: March 3, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance
 
Summary
 
He loves her, she loves him not...?

In the third novel of The Sweetest Kisses series, single mom Sidonie Lindstrom has her hands full with a troubled foster son, an abrupt adjustment to country living, and an unforeseen lack of funds. When her taciturn neighbor, MacKenzie Knightley, repeatedly offers practical help, Sid reminds herself she's not interested in the neighbor-despite his kindness, pragmatism and quiet charm. MacKenzie sees the vulnerability beneath her pride, and he's determined to change her mind...
 
Excerpt
 
“This is a nice spot,” Mac said. “The horses will loaf here in the hotter months because the trees make for good shade, but the canopy isn’t quite done leafing out yet, so we’ll be able to see the moon come over the ridge.” He spread the blanket on a patch of grass up the slope from the pond.
 
Sid settled on the blanket, running her hand over what felt like soft flannel, while Mac lowered himself beside her.
 
“Give me your foot.” Mac didn’t wait for her to comply. He took Sid by the foot, and drew her running shoe off. “Other one.”
 
He peeled her socks down and tucked them into her shoes, then unlaced his boots and set them beside the blanket, stuffing a sock in each one. “Moonrise is always best appreciated barefoot.”
 
The sentiment was poetical; the words were not. “Is that a rule?”
 
“Suppose it is.” He took off his jacket, balled it up, and lay back to rest his head on it. “Come here and let me hold you, Sidonie. I haven’t watched the moon come up with a lovely woman in my arms for years.”
 
She settled against him, resting her head on the slope of his shoulder. “We’re going to talk about rules like this?” He thought she was lovely.
 
“We’ll come to some understandings.” His arm came around her shoulders, and his hand stroked over her hair. “I’ll undo this braid while we’re at it.”
 
“Don’t lose my elastic.”
 
His fingers were soon winnowing through her hair, drawing the length of it over her shoulder.
 
“How am I supposed to think about rules when you’re touching me like this, MacKenzie?”
 
“You don’t need to think. You just tell me what’s true for you.”
 
“True about what?”
 
He went quiet again, while Sid repositioned herself against him. She could hear his heart beat, feel the slow, steady thud of his life’s blood beneath her cheek.
 
“What do you want from me, Sidonie Lindstrom? What do you need?”
 
“Nobody has asked me that before.” She considered her answer, while Mac’s hand drifted through her hair, across her back, down her arm. “I want a friend, I guess. You’ve been a friend to me, and I wasn’t expecting to find that here.”
 
“Is that all you want? I can be a good friend. My brothers would vouch for me in that regard.”
 
She could not tell from his voice if he was disappointed with her answer, or pleased. “No, that isn’t all I want, but I’ll settle for it, and be grateful if that’s where you want to draw the line. A friend, a real friend, is nothing to scoff at.”
 
Another silence, while Mac got his hand on her nape and started massaging the tension there. His idea of friendship would soon leave Sid witless and boneless.
 
“I can’t expect you to put yourself out there without showing I’m willing to do likewise: I want you.” Mac’s voice was quiet in the gathering darkness. “I want you at least for a friend, an intimate friend, Sidonie, but I don’t share something that precious. If you allow me the privileges of a lover, then I will expect that for whatever time I enjoy that status, those privileges are exclusively mine. You will agree to this, or our friendship keeps its clothes on.”
 
Sid shivered, though the night wasn’t uncomfortably cool, and Mac gave off heat like a woodstove. He was so serious about this, when they could have shared a casual romp in the moonlight.
 
She would have settled for that—and settling would have been a mistake.
 
She traced his facial features. Beyond serious, he was solemn, as if these understandings he sought could be the foundation for something even greater than friendship.
 
“If you agree to my terms,” he said, his hand slowing in her hair, “you agree because it’s what you want too, not because I need to hear the words and you have a private agenda that’s different from what you’ll say to me.”
 
He was asking for honesty, the most basic tenet of a real friendship. Friends were kind to each other, considerate, patient, reliable, but above all, a friend was somebody who told the truth.
 
“I don’t have much practice with relationships, MacKenzie.”
 
He rolled slowly, like the earth heaving up, until Sid was on her back with Mac blanketing her. “There’s more to say.” He rested his forehead against hers. “A lot more, but right now, Sidonie, I have to kiss you. Have to.”
 
 
Buy Links
 
Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1Cy16Iu
 
MY REVIEW:

Kiss Me Hello (Sweetest Kisses, #3)Kiss Me Hello by Grace Burrowes
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Kiss Me Hello by Grace Burrowes is a 2015 Sourcebooks Casablanca publication. I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.


Oh no! This is the final book in this series. I have enjoyed this author's foray into the contemporary romance realm. This book finally gives the reader a chance to find out about Mac's dark secrets. Why hasn't this good man ever married? Why has he gone ten long years without a date?

It was funny when Sidonie kisses Mac right out in the open and throws him into a tailspin. A simple pizza dinner with Sid and her foster son, Luis, has Mac thinking that maybe he has found someone to help assuage his loneliness and he wouldn't mind if it led to something deeper. But, Sid's life is really complicated at the moment. She loves Luis and wanted to adopt him, but he is reluctant to commit for his own reasons. Not only that, Sid's brother passed away and his estate is tied up in probate making her bid for adoption even more perilous. She does find Mac to be a man she has a few things in common with and the two are nearly insatiable when they find a moment alone with each other. But, Mac hasn't told Sid everything about his life and work, so when she finds out, the promising relationship everyone was cheering for suddenly crumbles.

This story once more focuses on the foster care system and it's bureaucratic red tape, the paperwork backlog, mistakes, and the prejudices that could prevent a child from being placed in a good home. Also, the attitude toward lawyers can be extremely negative when all you have ever seen was the bad side of them. Sid's issues with her brother's estate and her problems with the adoption gives her a big chip on her shoulder and Mac's profession makes him an enemy in her eyes. But, the Knightley's are not at all like the lawyers she is accustomed to dealing with. Can the brothers band together and give Sid a fighting chance with Luis and maybe, just maybe a chance at happiness with Mac?

I loved Luis. He was so perceptive about Sid's feelings and moods and often had a wry sense of humor. His story is heartbreaking, and he carried a load on his shoulders that with some love and support will soon be lessened. I enjoyed touching base again with Hannah and Trent who are doing great. Hannah's background is especially helpful to Mac and Sid in this story.
Sid and Mac are hot, hot, hot!! Super steamy, wonderful dialogue and a heart melting storyline with Luis rounds out the story ending the series on a very high note. 4.5 rounded to 5

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Author Biography
 
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Grace Burrowes' bestsellers include The Heir, The Soldier, Lady Maggie's Secret Scandal, Lady Sophie's Christmas Wish and Lady Eve's Indiscretion. The Heir was a Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2010, The Soldier was a PW Best Spring Romance of 2011, Lady Sophie's Christmas Wish won Best Historical Romance of the Year in 2011 from RT Reviewers' Choice Awards, Lady Louisa's Christmas Knight was a Library Journal Best Book of 2012, and The Bridegroom Wore Plaid was a PW Best Book of 2012. Her Regency romances have received extensive praise, including starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist. Grace is branching out into short stories and Scotland-set Victorian romance with Sourcebooks. She is a practicing family law attorney and lives in rural Maryland.
 
Social Networking Links
 

Bolt from the Blue by Tania Sparks Release Day Blast+ Giveaway



Enter to Win
Ebook copy of HEAVEN SENT or
$5.00 Amazon eGift Card


BOLT FROM THE BLUE
Oblivion on Tour #2
Tania Sparks
Releasing February 27th, 2015


Nikki’s the flamboyant rhythm guitarist of the hard rock band Oblivion. He’s a sexy rock star man-whore who’s accustomed to a life of music, partying and a constant stream of girls that are ready, willing and able!

Trixie’s a feisty party girl who likes to have fun. She makes the most of her single lifestyle and happy-go-lucky attitude. But she’s also a hard-nosed business women who knows what she wants and goes out and gets it. She lives her life by the motto ‘Work hard. Play hard’.

Neither of them ‘do relationships’. But when their frequent hook-ups start to develop into something more they realize that the connection and pull between them is undeniable. The prospect of wanting more than just mind-blowing sex from each other is a total shock to both of them and it hits them like a bolt from the blue.

Can they change their partying ways and give in to the irresistible chemistry that sizzles between them? Do they even want to? And will their past catch up with them to prevent them from giving the whole relationship thing a proper try?









The first thing you need to know about me is that I genuinely believe in true love and soul mates. I met my wonderful husband when we were still at school. I was sixteen, he was seventeen, we are high school sweethearts. Now more than twenty five years later, we are still very much in love and are happily married with two beautiful children. We live in picturesque New Zealand and I consider ourselves lucky to live in this magnificent part of the world.
I do have a full time job, but in my spare minutes I enjoy spending time with my family, cooking and reading. I’m an avid reader and tend to chomp through a large volume of books, mainly in the romance genre. And of course my other major ‘hobby’ is writing steamy rock star erotic romances!
I started writing in early 2014. After spending many years writing business documentation, and constantly being inspired by numerous romance novels, I decided to try my hand at fictional writing. After penning my first scene I discovered that I enjoyed it immensely and so resolved to continue with the rest of the story that was swirling in my imagination. That story resulted in my first novel, Heaven Sent. 
My Oblivion on Tour Series follows the five band members of the hard rock group Oblivion. Each book in the series follows a different band member and their quest for love.
Book 1 - Heaven Sent - Ash and Eve’s story
Book 2 - Bolt From The Blue - Nikki and Trixie’s story
Books 3, 4 & 5 will each tell Cody, Scott and Hansen’s stories.

I hope you enjoy reading my books as much as I enjoy writing them.

Find Tania Here

Jump on the Tour TODAY!





 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Return to You- The Montgomery Brothers- By Samantha Chase- Review + Coach Bag Giveaway!!

 
 
Book Information
 
Title: Return To You
Author: Samantha Chase
Release Date: March 3, 2015
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genre: Contemporary Romance
 
Summary
 
She will never forget their past...

He can't stop thinking about their future...

 
James Montgomery has achieved everything he'd hoped for in life...except marrying the girl of his dreams. After a terrible accident, Selena Ainsley left ten years ago. She took his heart with her and she's never coming back. But it's becoming harder and harder for him to forget their precious time together, and James can't help but wonder what he would do if they could ever meet again.
 
Excerpt
 
It was near midnight and Selena’s eyes felt heavy. With her head resting on James’s shoulder, she tried to focus on the ending of The Philadelphia Story. Back when they were dating, they used to enjoy watching classic movies, and finding one on the television seemed like the perfect way for them to relax after such an emotional evening.
 
James looked over at Selena and smiled to himself. If he could freeze this moment in time, he would. For years he had wondered if he’d ever find a woman he could come home to, with whom he could sit like this and simply relax. The woman half-asleep beside him was the only woman he wanted to fit that bill. The credits were beginning to roll, and he gently nudged her with his shoulder. “Hey,” he said softly, “are you still awake?”
 
“Mmm…barely,” she whispered and then yawned. As much as Selena knew that the bed would be a far more comfortable place to sleep, she didn’t want to leave the security of James’s side. She jumped when he shifted beside her to stand up. A wave of panic hit her as she prayed that he wasn’t getting up to leave. Before she could even voice her concern, James turned off the television and then scooped her up into his arms. “Oh!”
 
“Don’t get me wrong. I was completely enjoying being curled up with you on the sofa, but I had a feeling your neck was going to kill you tomorrow.” He walked through to the bedroom and carefully held her close as he pulled back the comforter and gently placed Selena down. Without a word, he walked back out to the living room and locked the door and turned out the lights before returning to her.
 
He didn’t ask permission.
 
She didn’t extend an invitation.
 
Neither seemed necessary.
 
Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23167025-return-to-you
 
Buy Links
 
Amazon: http://bit.ly/AZReturnToYou
Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/BNReturnToYou
Kobo: http://bit.ly/KoboReturnToYou
IndieBound: http://bit.ly/IndieReturnToYou





 
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MY REVIEW:

Return to You (The Montgomery Brothers, #4)Return to You by Samantha Chase
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Return to You by Samantha Chase is a 2015 Sourcebooks/Casablanca publication. I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

What a wonderful story! The set up was very cleverly arranged proving sometimes a couple needs a nudge in the right direction from friends and family to help right some serious wrongs. Thankfully, Serena and James have those types of people in their lives. But, getting these two to sit down and talk out their issues is going to take some creativity and maybe a little manipulation along the way too.

Jen, Serena's best friend, and William Montgomery, James' uncle, get together and device a plan to lure Serena back to her hometown using an ten year high school reunion as the bait, which will hopefully give them a chance to put James and Serena in the same place at the same time. They know it won't be easy, but too much time has passed and it's time for someone to do something before it really is too late.

Ten years ago Serena and James were deeply in love, planning on a wedding and a happy ever after, with all that implies. But, a horrible wrench is thrown into their plans and now both parties have spent the last ten years wallowing in anger, hurt and bitterness. Serena and James both have issues with their families they will have to come to terms with as well, but before they can deal with all that, they will have to get to the bottom of what broke them up in the first place. That is easier said than done, because every time they are together in the same room, the tension is so thick that talking in the last thing on their minds.


You will need two things handy before you start this one. A box of tissues and a bucket of ice. The story is light, but I did reach for a tissue a time or two, but the chemistry between James and Serena is so hot, you'll need that bucket of ice to cool down. This couple has no problems in the bedroom, but really heavy baggage between them keeps them from being able to resolve their past issues.
Despite all the help from outside forces, it looks like there may have been too many secrets, too many lies, and too much doubt for the couple to ever find their happy ever after together.
Can Jen and William pull out a Hail Mary?

While some of the issues outside of the couple's personal relationship were not all wrapped up like I wanted, a confrontation I was really anticipating did not come to pass, but other than that I loved everything about this story.

This is a really sweet, very sexy, spicy, and emotional contemporary romance. I closed the book with a big smile on my face. I am looking forward to more of William's magical match making skills. 4 stars

View all my reviews Author Biography


 
New York Times and USA Today Bestseller/contemporary romance writer Samantha Chase released her debut novel, Jordan's Return, in November 2011. Although she waited until she was in her 40's to publish for the first time, writing has been a lifelong passion. Her motivation to take that step was her students: teaching creative writing to elementary age students all the way up through high school and encouraging those students to follow their writing dreams gave Samantha the confidence to take that step as well.

When she's not working on a new story, she spends her time reading contemporary romances, playing way too many games of Scrabble or Solitaire on Facebook and spending time with her husband of 25 years and their two sons in North Carolina.
 
Social Networking Links
 
Website: http://www.chasing-romance.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SamanthaChaseFanClub
Twitter: https://twitter.com/SamanthaChase3
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1250276.Samantha_Chase

 

All of Me - Love Between the Bases #1 by Jennifer Bernard Pre-order Blast + Giveaway


Enter to Win
Advanced Paperback Copy of ALL OF ME
or, 
Pre-Order ALL OF ME 
and, 
Follow the directions below to enter to win
$50.00 Amazon eGift Card


ALL OF ME
Love Between the Bases #1
Jennifer Bernard
Releasing May 26th, 2015
Avon Romance


Jennifer Bernard, the USA Today bestselling author of the Bachelor Firemen series, scores another homerun with a brand-new series about sexy, single baseball players.

Playing for the Kilby Catfish is hotshot pitcher Caleb Hart’s last chance to salvage his career after a major league meltdown. But the day of his opener with the minor league team, Caleb strikes out with the gorgeous woman who is delivering a petition to run the unruly Catfish out of town. Now to stay in the lineup, Caleb will need to score big with the feisty brunette he can’t keep out of his thoughts.

After the nasty lies Sadie Merritt’s rich ex-boyfriend spread about her all over town, she’s lucky to have a job at all. She can’t afford to screw it up by falling for the player who is supposed to be helping her change the image of the fun-loving Catfish. But that’s easier said than done when Caleb’s voice alone is enough to make her pulse race. And when he surprises her with a mind-blowing kiss, she knows there’s no turning back.


BUY NOW



 
 
 
Because the ebook versions are NOT yet showing up for pre-order, the author has decided to  extend the Pre-Order Giveaway for the WHOLE MONTH!  The Giveaway is open now through MARCH  26th!!
 




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Jennifer Bernard is the USA Today bestselling author of the Bachelor Firemen of San Gabriels series. She is a graduate of Harvard and a former news promo producer. The child of academics, she confounded her family by preferring romance novels to … well, any other books. She left big city life for true love in Alaska, where she now lives with her husband and stepdaughters. She’s no stranger to book success, as she also writes erotic novellas under a naughty secret name not to be mentioned at family gatherings.





Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Dance For A Dead Princess by Deborah Hawkins


BLURB:



Nicholas Carey, 18th Duke of Burnham, international financier, is haunted by the loss of all the women he has ever loved. Taylor Collins, a beautiful American attorney, struggles to regain the love of the man who left her at the altar. A mystery rooted in the Carey family’s past throws Nicholas and Taylor into the midst of deadly international intrigue.



Finalist, Foreward Reviews Book of the Year; Finalist, Beverly Hills Book Awards, Honorable Mention Paris Book Awards
 
 
 
 




EXCERPT:

His amazing golden eyes held hers. She wanted to look away, but she couldn’t. “We’ve a great deal in common,” he observed.

Such as?”

We each lack a family. And we both wished for one.”

Taylor felt as if he had sent an arrow into the deepest part of her soul. But ever the professional, she remained impassive. “I don’t understand. You have your ward–and Ellen and her husband. And you could marry whenever you wish and produce many Carey heirs.”

It isn’t a matter of merely procreating,” Nicholas said. “If I married anyone–and I’m not going to do that–I would want to be in love.” His eyes held hers until she felt uncomfortable. She had papered over her past with a thick set of lies, and she had told them so often sometimes she herself mistook them for the truth. No one had ever guessed she was lying. But could he?

Better change the subject in a big way. “Why did meeting Deborah make you happy that you’d inherit the title after you’d been so miserable over being brought back from America?”

His golden eyes looked directly into hers and studied them for several seconds before he spoke. “Because she didn’t love me. Everyone loved her, and everyone wanted her. But I knew I’d get her in the end because I was going to be the Duke of Burnham, and she loved the idea of being a duchess. Despicable, wasn’t it?”

He immediately realized he’d backed her into a corner. “I apologize. I shouldn’t have said that.”

Taylor thought of the wedding photos: Nicholas gazing at Deborah with his heart in his eyes while she looked cooly at the camera. “I wouldn’t say ‘despicable.’ You really loved her. You weren’t just offering her a title. You were offering her your heart.”


MY REVIEW:
 
Dance for a Dead PrincessDance for a Dead Princess by Deborah Hawkins
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Dance for a Dead Princess by Deborah Hawkins is a 2013 publication. I was provided a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Modern day Dukes, intrigue, mystery and romance make this romantic suspense novel a very absorbing read.

Nicholas is the 18th Duke of Burnham with the public persona of being “Price Charming”. He always has a beautiful woman on his arm and his relationships are usually short term. He wishes to sell the Abbey where his wife Deborah died and he takes a certain satisfaction in knowing it will be turned into a school for girls, a development that would cause his father to roll over in his grave.

Taylor travels to London without much enthusiasm. Selling an Abbey and going through the estate of her late client and good friend Mari, is not how she envisioned spending her holidays. But, when she meets Nicholas she finds him quite unlike all her preconceived notions of him. In fact, Nicholas has a troubled ward to take care of, and is obviously still grieving for his wife Deborah, and his best friend, Princess Diana.

As Taylor begins to gather information for the sale of the Abbey she discovers the journal of Nicholas' ancestor, the first duke. The journals tell a sad story and explains a great deal about what really happened back in the 1500's, exonerating an accused murderer as well. The most interesting thing about the journals though, was how the story paralleled events in the present day.

For a debut novel this story was very ambitious. It's a contemporary romance that chronicles Taylor's broken engagement and her inability to accept it's really over between her and her ex. Nicholas of course has his plate full with a shallow girlfriend hoping to be rich and titled and is willing to pull out all the stops to make that happen. When Nicolas and Taylor begin to spend time together they forge a bond which could lead to more than friendship.


But, the book is also part historical fiction as the journals tell a story all their own. Then of course there is Lucy, the drug addled ward who can't stay clean and the elephant in the room... Nicholas' belief he can prove Princess Diana was murdered and can even name her killers, if only he could get his hands on a tape he believes Taylor's friend might have been killed for.

That is a lot of ground to cover and for the most part it works. There were a few issues here and there. The story did need a few nips and tucks, and firming up in some places.

The conspiracy was not as fleshed out as I would have liked and that part of the story didn't even develop at all until fairly deep into the story. It remained vague and shadowy, and it's conclusion was a bit weak and rushed through.

However, the point was made loud and clear and if you like conspiracy theories you will find this take on Diana's death worth mulling over. The love story though reigns supreme as two lost and lonely souls find one another and finally have the mutual love they both deserved.

Overall I enjoyed this story very much. It held my interest, had interesting plot twist and was very entertaining. 4 stars


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AUTHOR Bio and Links:


Deborah grew up in the South, wrote her first novel at the of age thirteen, and has been writing ever since. In graduate school, she studied Irish Literature and came to believe all Irishmen and Southerners are born storytellers. In addition to writing, she loves music and plays the clarinet. Now that her children are grown, she devotes her time to law, music, writing, and her two Golden Retrievers, Melody and Rhythm.

Deborah taught college English and worked as a technical editor before going to law school. She worked for several large East Cost firms before coming to California in the mid-1980's where she developed a solo practice as an appellate attorney while raising her three children as a single parent. She is admitted to the bar in two states and the District of Columbia, is a certified appellate specialist, and has a Master of Laws in addition to a Masters in English. She believes that even a legal case always begins with a story. Her second novel, Ride Your Heart ‘Til It Breaks is expected to be out in December 2014.

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/deborah.hawkins.37
Blog http://dhawkins.net blog http://deborahsbookreviews.com
Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Dance-For-Dead-Princess-ebook/dp/B00C4HP9I0

 
 
 
 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

One Wish by Robyn Carr- A Book Review

 
 
Grace Dillon was a champion figure skater until she moved to Thunder Point to escape the ruthless world of fame and competition. And though she's proud of the quiet, self-sufficient life she's created running a successful flower shop, she knows something is missing. Her life could use a little excitement.

In a community where there are few eligible singles, high school teacher Troy Headly appoints himself Grace's fun coach. When he suggests a little companionship with no strings attached, Grace is eager to take him up on his offer, and the two enjoy…getting to know each other.

But things get complicated when Grace's past catches up with her, and she knows that's not what Troy signed up for. Faced with losing her, Troy realizes Grace is more than just a friend with benefits. He's determined to help her fight for the life she always wished for but never believed she could have—and maybe they can find real love along the way.



My Review:


One Wish (Thunder Point, #7)One Wish by Robyn Carr
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

One Wish by Robyn Carr is a 2014 Harlequin Mira publication. I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

We visit Thunder Point once again as we meet Grace, a woman sort of hiding out from her past. Grace lived life as an only child of a wealthy parent, thrust into the spotlight as an Olympic ice skater. But, she walked away from all that and is now running a floral shop in Thunder Point.
When her friend Iris marries after a whirlwind courtship, she breaks Troy Headly's heart in the process. On the rebound, Troy begins to hang out with Grace more and eventually the two begin dating. Troy soon discovers Grace has a past she would rather keep hidden. So, why did Grace walk away from fame and glory? Will Troy be able to deal with her past?

There is also a secondary story as a companion to Troy and Grace's relationship which of course blends together in it's own way. However, I have to say that while I did like the characters in this part of the novel, I didn't like the depressing storyline.

This not the very best effort by this author, but it's still a very good read for the most part. I thought some parts were rushed through and some parts dragged on far too long.
I saw real character development and growth, especially for Grace who has been so sheltered. She blossoms with Troy and begins to make peace with herself and her past. She will also face adversity when a family crisis develops and although she could have passed off the obligations to others, she handles things very well, stepping up to the plate and taking the high road, letting go of a lifetime of resentment in the process. I wouldn't say she was totally forgiving, but as much as one could be in her situation.

In the end the two story lines mesh together bringing things to a head for Troy and Grace, forcing them to make a decision about their future together. While it is touch and go there for a while, in the end true love will work it's magic. So, even if it looks like Cupid's aim is off, never give up. Love is out there, sometimes right under your nose. You just have to open your mind and heart and let it happen the way it's meant to be. This one gets 4 stars.



A RITA award-winning author of 25 novels, Robyn Carr has found a whole new following with her stories about the independent women and former marines of Virgin River."

RT's Career Achievement Best Author Award winner (2010) for Contemporary Romance.

Crashing The Net by Jami Davenport- Release Day Blast + Giveaway



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CRASHING THE NET
Game On In Seattle #3
Jami Davenport
Releasing February 24th, 2015


Hockey star Cooper Black and professional party crasher Izzy Maxwell return in this sequel to Crashing the Boards.

Jealous boyfriends and glitzy parties can be a recipe for disaster. When the gorgeous yet controlling Cooper interrupts a party Izzy was paid to crash and almost ruins her career as a professional party crasher, Izzy kicks him to the curb. She learned early in life not to count on anyone, and she will not relinquish her independence, not even to a sexy-as-sin pro athlete who can melt her with one wink.

As the Sockeyes hockey team opens their inaugural season in Seattle, Cooper finds himself minus a girlfriend and plus a surly teenaged nephew. Cooper doesn’t want to be a surrogate dad, he doesn’t want to play in Seattle, and he doesn’t want to be alone. He misses Izzy, but seeing her with other men at parties turns him every shade of green. Regardless, he wants her back, and he’s willing to change, if only she’ll give him a second chance. Aware of her precarious finances, Cooper makes an offer she can’t refuse by hiring her to be responsible for his nephew when he’s traveling with the team.

Fearing Cooper isn’t capable of changing his control-freak ways, Izzy resists his efforts to turn their financial arrangement into a personal relationship. He needs a sweet, docile girlfriend, and Izzy cannot be that woman. Yet, when tragedy strikes, Izzy is there when Cooper needs her the most, and love has a way of getting what it wants, no matter the circumstances.


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USA Today Bestselling Author Jami Davenport writes sexy contemporary and sports romances, including her two new indie endeavors: the Game On in Seattle Series and the Madrona Island Series. Jami lives on a small farm near Puget Sound with her Green Beret-turned-plumber husband, a Newfoundland cross with a tennis ball fetish, a prince disguised as an orange tabby cat, and an opinionated Hanoverian mare. She works in computer support in her day job and juggles too many balls, but she wouldn't have it any other way.



Monday, February 23, 2015

I Loved a Rogue by Katherine Ashe- A Book Review

 
In the third in Katharine Ashe's Prince Catchers series, the eldest of three very different sisters must fulfill a prophecy to discover their birthright. But if Eleanor is destined to marry a prince, why can't she resist the scoundrel who seduced her?

She can pour tea, manage a household, and sew a modest gown. In short, Eleanor Caulfield is the perfect vicar's daughter. Yet there was a time when she'd risked everything for a black-eyed gypsy who left her brokenhearted. Now he stands before her—dark, virile, and ready to escort her on a journey to find the truth about her heritage.

Leaving eleven years ago should have given Taliesin freedom. Instead he's returned to Eleanor, determined to have her all to himself, tempting her with kisses and promising her a passion she's so long denied herself. But if he was infatuated before, he's utterly unprepared for what will happen when Eleanor decides to abandon convention—and truly live.


My Review:


I Loved a Rogue (The Prince Catchers, #3)I Loved a Rogue by Katharine Ashe
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved a Rogue by Katherine Ashe is a 2015 Avon publication. I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher and Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

This is the third book in the Prince Catchers series. It can be read as a stand alone, but I highly recommend reading the series in order.

This is such a wonderful story with a fairytale quality that charmed me from start to finish. Everyone loves a Prince, right? But a rogue???

Three beautiful and exotic sisters raised by a Vicar are seeking out their true heritage. Eleanor is the only unmarried sister and with the Vicar taking a bride, she willingly takes on the responsibility of locating her real parents. Traveling away from home also removes her from a new suitor she would rather avoid. One little hitch comes up in her plans. The dark haired gypsy boy who broke her heart eleven years ago is to be her escort.

Taliesin left eleven years ago beaten and broken hearted. Taliesin is a grown man now and he is determined to give Eleanor all she desires, despite what transpired in the past. But, she utterly shocks him when it becomes apparent she is tired of being the sheltered Vicar's daughter who always does what is expected of her. It's adventure she seeks, and you know what they say... Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.

The history of vagabonds, gypsies and rogues is interwoven in the story , giving it an authenticity and an insight that enhanced the emotional level, the adventure, the danger and the love story. Eleanor is a spirited girl who has had to keep a clamp down on her adventurous side all these years.
Taliesin's story is truly unique and sad, but ultimately triumphant. I loved the references to Tristan and Isodle through out the book. The hero, Taliesin, is so mysterious and unique I just fell in love with him. Rogue or not he was the right man for our Eleanor. While this story has a lot of emotion, intrigue and and drama, it also has humor and wit giving it that fairytale quality I mentioned in the beginning.
If you have been following the series you will know that if the prophesy told in the first book is true then Eleanor is the sister that will marry a prince, since her two sisters have married, and very well I might add, but not to a prince.
So, does the prophesy come true? Will Eleanor find her true family? I loved how everything came together at the end. We have to absorb a lot of information in the last quarter of the book, and not all things were laid out in minute detail, leaving the reader the freedom to imagine things in whatever way they wish. But, never fear, there is an awesome HEA!! 5 stars!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


Katharine Ashe writes lushly intense historical romances with a touch of adventure. Her novella HOW TO MARRY A HIGHLANDER is a 2014 RITA® Award Finalist, I MARRIED THE DUKE was nominated for Best Historical Romance of 2013 in the Reviewers' Choice Awards, and Amazon chose her HOW TO BE A PROPER LADY among the 10 Best Romances of 2012. She is the winner of the 2011 Reviewers' Choice Award for Best Historical Adventure and a 2013 Library of Virginia Literary Award nominee in Fiction.

Katharine lives in the wonderfully warm Southeast with her husband, son, dog, and a garden she likes to call romantic rather than unkempt. A professor of European history, she has made her home in California, Italy, France, and the northern US. She loves hearing from readers! Please visit her at www.KatharineAshe.com, or sign up for her monthly news briefs here: http://www.katharineashe.com/find-me/...