Though I’m always gun-shy of novellas, I tend to take chances on authors that I trust. Novellas are also a nice way to get in some reading when life is crazy and time is a factor or as a “palate cleanser” between books.
Letting Go by Megan Hart – Grade: B
This author is well known for her poignant erotic writing and I think this story does a good job of highlighting that skill. Colleen knows in her head that she is a smart and beautiful woman but her heart is still struggling to let go of the emotional abuse heaped on her by her ex-husband. She goes to a local bar every Thursday night to brood at a drink that she won’t imbibe just to prove to herself that she isn’t the weak woman her ex says she is. Jesse doesn’t know what it is about his Thursday night regular. There’s something sad and beautiful that he just wants to take care of but respects the no-go signs she gives off.
A snowstorm finally snaps the sexual tension building between them. Roles are reversed as Jesse helps Colleen to understand her need for control and happily gives it to her. Their sexy times are very hot, but what was sweeter was what a really good guy Jesse was without overdoing it. The pacing might be a bit slow for some but I liked that the author didn’t push scenes. She let them develop on their own because Colleen’s issues were really embedded in her psyche. Also, I can see some readers being turned off by Colleen’s rather cold and staid demeanor but I think Jesse’s warm and open character more than makes up for it.
Seize the Night by Tiffany Reisz – Grade: B-/C+
The author’s noted Original Sinner’s series is very intense and I love that she gets to showcase a more fun and playful side of her writing that only gets hinted at in her regular series. Reisz takes Romeo and Juliet and sets it among Kentucky’s famous horse country. Remi Montgomery has been happily running her family’s horse farm since she graduated college. That is until Remi notes the Brite’s, the rival farm, spending a great deal of money at the same time Remi’s parents are throwing around some serious cash and the family rivalry being pumped up in the horse racing papers. Desperate to get to the bottom of the situation, Remi heads off to Paris, with her sarcastic assistant, Merrick, to try to get Julian Brite to help her stop whatever devious plans their families have in mind.
However, the last time she was with Julien Brite, they caused quite the scandal when they were caught in a compromising position. Also, in the midst of their whirlwind connection, Julien forgot to mention to the 21 year old Remi that he was only 17!! Fast forward and the spark they experienced that night wasn’t a fluke. Their reconnection is heartfelt as they share their experiences of the past 5 years. Reisz does a fantastic job of bringing levity and humor to their sexy times and it’s just a joy to read even though I admit to being a bit squicked out about the initial age difference.
Overall, I enjoyed both novellas. I liked the juxtaposition of Hart’s tender and melancholic story with Reisz’s light and frothy one. Both stories are very well written and sensual but do suffer a bit emotionally from the short length. I would recommend this anthology especially who might be new to these authors.
*ARC provided by Harlequin
Click to purchase: Amazon
by Tiffany Reisz and Megan Hart
Release Date: October 28, 2014