Monday, August 27, 2012
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
I have a Galley of Born to Bite by Hannah Howell, Erica Ridley & Diana Cosby, soft, glossy cover w/ artwork. The official release date is August 28th.
Open to US & Canada residents only. The last day to try to get it will be September 7, 2012. To enter, just go to my blog and leave an email address - you can do the "letyourmindalone at hotmail dot com" thing if you want to leave your email like that.
"Hannah Howell- "Dark Secret". Murdina Dunbar sets out in search of the only family she has left - and finds an ally in the mysterious Sir Gillanders Baldwin. Soon, not even the whispers that he's a dangerous demon can keep her from his bed...
Diana Cosby - "Highland Vampire". As King of the Highland Coven, vampire Aedan MacGregor knows that falling for the fey Rowan Campbell could destroy her. But one taste of her healing blood and he craves her like no other...
Erica Ridley - "Never Been Bitten". Rumoured to be a vampire, the rakish Mr. Macane is ravishing all the ladies of the ton. But once Miss Elspeth Ramsay feels the touch of his teeth at her throat, she finds herself biting him back! Surely this sudden bloodlust can only mean danger for her family - and her heart..."
Due to the very crafty, yet well-intentioned, machinations of her grandmother, Jessica Heymore and her former crush Matt Lawson are thrown together and both end up being roommates in the grandmother's house. Jessica needs a place to think and be by herself. After working hard and trying to make it on her own, she finds out that what was supposed to have been a legitimate promotion, turns out to have been some behind the scenes maneuvering by her powerful & wealthy father. What's worse is the part her fiancé played in the debacle. Matt Lawson owns a landscaping business and has been very successful outside his hometown and received acclaim but when it comes to his hometown - he feels that people still don't take him seriously as a businessman and only trust him to trim their lawns. Years ago, Jessica had a major crush on Matt and came on to him but he brushed her off. Now, years later, after being thrown together the sparks fly. I loved the chemistry between Jessica and Matt. I thought this was a fun, sweet, sexy story. I would look forward to reading a story about their best friends. The only thing that I didn't care for was how Matt kept calling her "squirt". I mean he's only about 2 years younger than her. Whenever he did that I just pictured a huge disparity in age.
This was a little bit "Catch Me If You Can" meets James Bond for me. Hillary Wright has a habit of picking lousy guys. The most recent guy she was involved with turned out to be doing some criminal activities. She is a professional, nice woman, but has just been a bad judge of men. When her boyfriend got busted, the Feds offered her immunity if she went undercover to positively ID one of her boyfriend's business partners. Troy Donovan is sent in to be her handler/bodyguard. He is devastatingly handsome, an extremely wealthy businessman, a computer genius, and occasional spy for the government. Years ago, when he was a teen, he got himself into some trouble hacking into a military database. Instead of doing hard time, he was sent to a boot camp/reform school. While there, he met some fellow young gifted bad boys, & matured. I loved the chemistry between the two. I love that Troy was entranced by Hillary's beauty right away and as he got to know her, was even more bewitched by her. I loved the way he wooed her. At no time was he a jerk in any way to her, or try to talk down to her. He always treated her with total respect & was a real sweetie. In spite of the circumstances that put the two of them together, most of the book was just them getting to know watch other and fall in love. The circumstances involving the bad guy were just frame for that. I liked that. I prefer romances that focus more on relationships as opposed to a high action/suspense storyline. This was a sweet, sexy, fun romance. I look forward to reading about Troy's buddies in future stories.
This was a very different kind of story than I am used to reading. The hero, Elliot Marchmont, is a gentleman, former soldier & spy, and notorious thief known as "The Peacock". Elliot is no ordinary thief. He steals from those who have either been traitors, or who have contributed to the death or disenfranchisement of the English soldier. He's a complicated good guy. He first meets the heroine, Lady Deborah, while stealing from the home of her loathsome brother-in-law. Thiers is a chance meeting in moonlight and very romantic. When they meet again by chance some time later, their attraction only grows. Deborah convinces Elliot to take her on a few of his escapades. Lady Deborah is equally as complex a character as Elliot. She was married years ago when she was just a girl, believing she was marrying for love. Unfortunately she came to find out that her husband was only marrying her for money - which didn't really work out for him in the end. He ended up a very bitter man and overdosing - whether by intention or accident. It's difficult to feel any pity for her late husband because he treated her abominably and let her believe that the problems in the marriage were strictly because of her and her inadequacies. Her let her know this often and very cruelly. For solace, she turns to writing to express herself. She creates the character Bella Donna - a sort of alter ego. Bella Donna is a strong, almost dominatrix-like character who embodies all the traits Deborah believes she does not possess. I love the layers these characters have, and the romance that develops between them. I also like the ending and the way Deborah decides to free herself of the past and thumb her nose at her brother-in-law.
Thursday, August 16, 2012
The book starts out with Grace (a witch) summoning Crown Prince of Hell Caspian. They are instantly attracted to one another, but Grace tries to play it off like she's not impressed by either Caspian's sexiness, or his power. Grace is doing this summoning for revenge. Her ex is a total creep and he has taken and kept their young son from her. Later in the story she is told that her son does not really exist. It's just something her ex conjured up to try and get the pure hearted Grace to do something so dastardly he gets demon status. She is told that the only way she can break the spell is if she admits out loud that her son doesn't and never has really existed. Understandably, this is something that plays with Grace's emotions throughout much of the book. Anyway.....Caspian agrees to the pact with one condition. His payment is sex with Grace. In spite of a lot of rumbling from Grace, this is not a hardship since she is just as taken with him. I like that she was a strong woman and also a plus size woman. The chemistry between the two is fantastic. I love all the bad things Caspian rains down on Michael (Grace's ex); some of them were truly inspired. This is a book where the baddie got tons of punishment and very fitting punishment. The title refers to the fact that Michael tells Grace she has to lose the demon or else he will kill their son.
There are a lot of minor plots and secondary characters in this book but I found them all interesting. I liked the little side romances of Grace's supposedly dead grandmother - who is in fact the Baba Yaga - with Hades. I also liked that Petru & Katerina find love. When Petru was first introduced, I thought he would just be a little "lackey # 2" kind of character, but his story was actually very sweet.
This story was super-hot, very naughty, very funny, and had an enjoyable story and characters. I laughed so much while reading this book.
Friday, August 10, 2012
There are two main storylines in this book. The most important one involves the murder. The second one is all about Jaine and her neighbor Lance's competition to win the new attractive neighbor, Peter. This book was very funny, as is always the case with this series. The victim in this book is an old actress who played a part similar to "Morticia Addams". The show only lasted one season, and she was a nasty old lady in the neighborhood - many suspects. Jaine first comes across her while chasing her cat Prozac. Prozac winds up at the window of Cryptessa's house. Cryptessa then blames Jaine's cat for startling her bird Van Helsing causing it to die. This is typical of the kinds of interactions Cryptessa has with her neighbors. She gets stabbed while a costume party is going on by somebody wearing an ape suit - framing Jaine, since that was originally the costume she had on earlier. Jaine soon discovers loads of possible suspects in the neighborhood including a local politician, Ken and Barbie real estate agents, a young college student with racy secrets, and eccentric homebodies. Also - scattered throughout the book are amusing emails from Jaine's parents. I enjoyed hearing about her goofy father and his lawn decoration conspiracy. I loved Jaine and her humorous escapades but wish she would catch a break now and then and find some love. I also think her next door neighbor Lance is too obnoxious. Look forward to the next one in the series.
Tuesday, August 7, 2012
This was the first story I've read by this author. I enjoyed it a lot. There are some very bizarre family dynamics going on in this story. Olivia is a woman going to her hometown to plan the wedding of her pregnant sister to the guy she was dating two months ago. If I were in her shoes I don't think I would have done it. I was very surprised that Olivia's parents weren't more sensitive to what she was going through emotionally. And the sister, Noelle....I would have liked to have seen her get her just desserts at the end. I understand she was pregnant, but she just seemed like an evil psycho. I liked that the author tried to give the groom some depth by showing his mindset so the reader has a window into his thoughts to know that he realizes what a bad thing he did and how he plans to take responsibility for his actions. I loved the chemistry between Olivia and Kyle's step-brother, Brandon. Brandon was just such a sexy, nice, cool guy. He tries to talk some sense into Kyle and stop him from marrying Noelle and ruining his life, telling him and he can still support his child and be there even without marrying the baby's mother. Kyle is probably right though, knowing how unbalanced Noelle is, she probably would either make visitation very hard or else do something crazy like run away with the child. I loved how the romance between Olivia and Brandon developed, even for a short story. I was very happy with the ending. I can only say that I would have liked a longer story about these two even more.
In the Leslie Kelly story, Lauren and Seth were high school sweethearts and Seth had mysteriously ditched prom and was never seen again. Lauren is angry for him pulling a no show. When reunited, Seth explains what happened to tear them apart. They find that the feelings they had then are still there today and rekindle their old love.
I got this book for the Leslie Kelly story. That one was good but my favorite story was the Janelle Denison one. In the Denison story, Will was a computer geek back in high school and Ali was a cheerleader. Will ended up tutoring Ali and they found they had a lot in common and connected. They made a date, but Will ended up calling her to cancel saying he wasn't interested anymore and avoided her for the rest of high school. Ali was and is a sweet person as well as pretty so she was very hurt by Will's supposed rejection. Years later at their reunion Will tells her what kept them apart and I loved the chemistry they share and thought they were both nice, cool people.
In the Leto story, back in high school Scott "Rip" Ripley was a wealthy bad boy. Erica was the classic good girl. One day Rip offers to tutor her and they become secret friends. Erica always wished that their relationship could have become more. When Rip first encounters Erica at their reunion it's like a scene out of the end of the movie "Grease". She teases him with her "good girl gone a little wild" act. Rip has matured and gets a thrill out of Erica's playful naughtiness, but appreciates the woman she actually is. This was a good story and I was also intrigued by the chemistry between Shaw & Kate and hope to read a story about them in the future.
Sunday, August 5, 2012
Wednesday, August 1, 2012
This book contains characters from previous books by this author. Having never read those other ones before, I was still able to enjoy this story. To fully appreciate this story, you have to understand the main characters. Phoebe Linville comes from a Quaker community in America. Her mother was born in England and part of the aristocracy but met, fell in love with, and married somebody from a completely different world. Her parents were happy together but after their death Phoebe felt more strongly that she did not belong in her given environment. When word comes from her maternal grandfather in England that he wishes to meet her and for her to embrace her mother's family, she is thrilled. Although she loves her brother, she feels drawn to England and whatever that may bring. She also yearns for a family connection to provide what she lost by losing her parents. She is surprised to find, when she gets to England, that her grandfather is dead and that his last wishes were for her to live with her maternal relatives and marry Major Lucas Stanton. Lucas is a distant cousin whom Phoebe's grandfather thought would help provide for and protect her. Lucas has a tangled past. When he was a young man, he competed with one of his relatives over the affections of a great beauty. In the end, the woman chose neither man and married someone else. The damage that she left in her wake created a huge rift in Lucas and Stephen's relationship. Lucas threw himself into military life to forget his troubles. It's an older and slightly bitter Lucas that Phoebe first meets. She is a little attracted to him, but worries that his military lifestyle and past family estrangements have made him a man too quick to anger. Lucas is more and more captivated by Phoebe each day. He enjoys her personality and finds her very beautiful. He is just wary of being in a woman's thrall after his last experience. The main source of conflict in this book is, after their marriage, they find themselves on opposite sides of the local smuggling issue. I liked watching their relationship evolve and how the characters developed over time. I was satisfied with the ending and am looking forward to reading the earlier books in this series.