Review: For the First Time (An Anthology)

for the first timeReviewed by Shelly

Title: Sole
Author: Alessandre Torre

This is a follow up from Hollywood Dirt. The author is new to me so I’m not familiar with the initial story. The short piece was fun, though, and was surprisingly witty and captivating. They’re a married couple, he’s a gorgeous Hollywood actor and she’s pretty in an understated way. The story happens during an hour of their lives.

Rating: C

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Title: Begging for More
Author: Kim Karr

Boy sees girl in a bar. They meet, dance, he fingers her on the dance floor before she knows his name. I’m not a fan of this kind of sexual escapade. Apparently, James and Lindsay are in other stories (Toxic, Tainted Love Duet, Blow & Crush) by this new to me author.

Rating: C-

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Title: Heartbreak
Author: Skye Warren

I’ve read a few of Warren’s NA stories and have enjoyed them immensely. I always stay away from teenage stories and there’s very little I find worthwhile in dark romances and definitely not teenaged dark romances. This is both. Blue and Hannah’s story when they’re out of foster care continues in Better When It Hurts. The story telling is actually quite good; it’s just not for me.

Rating: B-

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Title: Naughty Wishes
Author: Sarah Castille

This was the first story in the anthology that wasn’t related to another. Married with children, Kylie and Dan are in a rut. The communication isn’t there, and their bedroom time only happens in the dark. Dan decides to spice things up by giving his wife a menage for her birthday. Kylie’s not only shocked, but she suspects her Dan’s doing this for his own nefarious reasons. It’s not until the deed actually happens that their love for each other comes to the surface. Good story, but I’m not a fan of this kind of lack of emotional ties even in a menage.

Rating: B

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Title: His First and Only
Author: Alexa Riley

Tiffany and Ethan were kids when they met. He was a foster kid living in the house next door to Tiffany and her family. After an incident during their youth, these two are separated for the next ten years. Working as a Burlesque dancer, Tiffany is perfectly fine with her life, except that her motivation for anything better is gone. Her daily thoughts always turn to the boy she grew up with. Ethan’s been looking for his Tiffany for the past few years, never having meant to leave her, and he’s not about to break his promise of forever now that he’s found her.

This is a good stand alone story; enough so that I’m going to have to find some other works by this new to me author.

Rating: B

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Title: Decadent Knights
Author: Julia Sykes

This new to me author’s story is definitely not my style. A very dark romance with heavy BDSM with an asphyxiation scene. Lydia, a submissive who was previously an imprisoned slave (don’t know how or when) and Smith, the Dom, story has a longer story line in Knight (Impossible, 4).

Rating: D

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Title: A Lake George Christmas
Author: Debra Presley

Music star, Abby and her bodyguard boyfriend, Dan spend their first Christmas together in his cabin. During this time, Abby gets more acquainted with Dan, his parents and the Christmas traditions that they keep as Italians. This couple’s also featured in Finding Us (A Nucci Securities Novel).

Rating: C

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Title: Advent
Author: Nina Lane

A college student of an indeterminate age is staying with her college professor love interest. He’s on the verge of an out of country assignment, and she’s very anxious about the length of his absence. The reason I said that the heroine’s age is unknown is because she thinks that 6 months is a long time. That’s usually a very young person’s mindset, but there’s something to lead me to believe that she went to college more than 5 years ago and is a returning student… I think, I’m not sure. You can more about Liv and Dan West in Lane’s Arouse: Book 1.

Rating: C

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Title: Looking for a Complication
Author: Tamsen Parker

After reading the first page, I realized that this is an f/f – unfortunately I don’t read stories with that content. I skipped to the end of the story to see if it’s a part of a story line and there’s nothing there so I’m guessing it’s a stand-alone. The good news is that I like the Compass Series stories by this author.

Rating: DNF

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Title: Test Driving the Billionaire
Author: Cynthia Sax

My 2016 reading resolution includes not reading any billionaire stories especially when billionaire is in the title.

Rating: Didn’t start

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Title: Delay of Game
Author: Jan Frederick

An angsty filled read about Lisle who’s loved her neighbor and best friend, Wyatt, since childhood. Lisle is one of these girls who spouts the enlightened feminist speak that she doesn’t need a man to make her happy. It’s too bad for her that when she decides she’s ready, all of her friends are already married and making families, while she’s still stuck with the guys drinking beer and watching football. I can’t feel sympathy for characters like her. But even with that, the writing was actually very good.

Rating: C

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Title: Her First Choice
Author: Lynda Chance

There was nothing about this story that appealed to me. It came off as just being crass, the hero, Tyler, was a pus*y hound who picked up our heroine at the bar. She, Whitney, went to the bar to pickup a guy for ‘revenge’ sex because her ex cheated on her. Stay classy!

Rating: D

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Title: Sympathy for the Devil
Author: Cynthia Rayne

I’m not sure what this was supposed to be. Dolly recently left her mob enforcer husband. She and her son are hiding away until one night when another mob enforcer comes to Dolly to give her some news. What happens after that so threw me for a loop I don’t even know what to tell you – no spoilers here.

Rating: D

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Title: Trailer Park Eden
Author: CJ Roberts

Stories like this should definitely have a disclaimer. Twincest (I’m not sure that’s a word but you know what I mean), teen aged prostitution, m/m, violence. Roberts started with what I have to admit is a good storyline about a set of twins (m/f) – the girl is blind while the boy is deaf. Interesting, right? Well even more, these kids live in a trailer park with their father, who’s disabled also, and yeah he’s a absolute terrible parent who doesn’t take care of his children, but instead drinks away whatever money is earned or given. This quickly became very dark but I couldn’t stop reading but I was sure the direction wasn’t going where I didn’t want it to and sure enough – BAM! YES, IT DID. The author’s left it open to further adventures. This is so not my cuppa tea.

Rating: F

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Title: It Takes Two
Author: Nikki Sloane

This is porn. I’m not even kidding with that. Nina, who can’t seem to get a job keeping her clothes on, decides that making porn is the way to go. Her first sex scene which is shockingly a threesome with two performing gentlemen is described in detail. Yes, she liked it (the sex, the money, the cameras), loved it actually. Again, not my cuppa tea.

Rating: F

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Title: Heart of Eve
Author: Pam Godwin

A post apocalyptic tale of the last surviving female, Eve, and the priest, Roark, who’s protecting her. Roark’s developing feelings for Eve and not so patiently waits for a sign from God to have sex with Eve.

Rating: C

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Title: Steal My Breath
Author: Nina Levine

Bar owner Luke’s a bit of a mystery to waitress – aspiring author Callie. After being in each other’s company for a year, Callie’s online dating tragedies finally force Luke to make his move. Except for the hero who’s married and not to the heroine, the pace and plot moved well. Unfortunately, I’m not a fan of cheating spouses in any circumstance – not any.

Rating: C

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Title: Rapunzel’s First Knight
Author: Shoshanna Evers

The grown up version of the classic fairy tale.

Rating: C

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Title: Swept Away
Author: Anna Zaires

Blood drinker Arus rescues Delia during a storm. She thought he was a Greek god, but he said he wasn’t and was from a different planet. It’s short so that was a small blessing. There’s a series – ‘The Krinar Chronicles’.

Rating: D

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Title: Unique
Author: Avery Aster

This does’t interest me.
Here’s the blurb: “Dumped by Europe’s hottest disc jockey, Kiki Izatt jumps into her career, taking New York society by storm. In charge of Brill Inc.’s jewelry client, Paloma Gems, she’s ready to show the industry who sparkles.
Superstar DJ Dejon had no choice but to cut ties. If Kiki blew his techno-spin cover by discovering his real intentions to hijack The Style Gala, she’d ruin his crusade to return the blood diamonds to his West African people. Dejon couldn’t go back on his word to his brother Dash, even if it meant not marrying Kiki.
When Dash Turay accidently shoots and injures Kiki while stealing Paloma’s most valuable stone, he’s taken with her. Dash wants her. He must have her! So what if Kiki is from Utah and promised her virginity to Dejon? Dash will find a way to get her in his bed, with or without Dejon’s approval.
Familiar with Sister Wives, Kiki wonders if it’s time to try her hand at Brother Husbands!”

Rating: Didn’t start

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Title: Owned
Author: Jenika Snow

Secretary To Jaxon, Rose doesn’t have a lot of money. The way to get the money she needs to pay her bills is to sell her virginity. Jaxon is the buyer of said virginity. This is such tripe. I should have stoppered reading at this line from Jaxon “His dick punched forward, wanting to be covered in her cream and virgin blood.”

Rating: F

Happy Reading Folks!

Overall Rating: C-/D

*ARC provided by author

Click to purchase: Amazon

For the First Time
Various Authors
Release Date: January 12, 2016

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