Review: Lionheart by Thea Harrison

Reviewed by Jen

I can always count on Thea Harrison to satisfy my PNR itch. Lionheart is the third in her Moonshadow trilogy based on the world of the Elder Races. This story features Dr. Kathryn Shaw, trauma surgeon to Dragos Caluebre and his sentinels. Her hero is none other than Oberon, king of the dark fae.

Oberon has been in something like a magical coma for the past 15. Isabeau, Queen of the Light Court, orchestrated an attempt on his life along time ago and she used Morgan La Fae to do it. Oberon tried many things to slow down the effects of the poison that was used, but eventually he had to put himself in stasis to keep from dying. Unfortunately, his power is leaking out and wreaking havoc on his lands. His cousin, Annwyn, reaches out to Kathyrn, knowing if he is not healed, he may have to die to save everything he holds dear. [Read more…]

Review: Old Dog, New Tricks by Hailey Edwards

Reviewed by Jen

I’ve been sitting here for a long time, trying to figure out exactly what it was about this book that left me a little lukewarm. It’s not the main character, because I really like Thierry. It’s definitely not her dad, because I find Mac fascinating and the relationship growing between him and his daughter is really something special. It’s not the world-building, because that was expertly done. And it wasn’t the ending, because it wraps up the series arc quite nicely.

So what is it? Two things, I think. One, the romance in this series has never quite connected for me. Yes, I get that Thierry has made her decision, and as of the end of book three, she’d committed entirely to Shaw. It’s not so much that I think Rook was a better choice for her, though a couple of books back, it seemed like he might have been. Maybe it’s because I never saw them fall in love. Maybe it’s because he hurt her so deeply. Maybe it’s the age difference. All of these or some combination, no matter how you slice it, I was just not invested, even if I could want Thierry to be with him just to get the HEA she earned. [Read more…]

Review: A Soldier’s Duty by Jean Johnson

Reviewed by Jen

I have read some fantastic sci-fi romance is lately and I am always on the hunt for another one. This book was one recommended to me by Goodreads because of the Linnea Sinclair books I’ve read. With its four star average and library availability, I did not hesitate to snatch it up. But while it is futuristic and science fiction-y, be warned, there is no romance here. Not even a little. None.

This is military science fiction. The heroine is precognitive and knows the world is on a devastating trajectory. The only way she can save it is to become a marine and affect the course of events.

The first half of the book follows her training. It is pretty much like the basic training you would find in any modern day movie. Her body is pushed to its physical limits. There is the whole thing about breaking her down and building her back up again. There’s even a hell week. The second half of the book follows her through two years of service on a ship and the missions she undertakes. [Read more…]

Review: Lie Down With Dogs by Hailey Edwards

Reviewed by Jen

Dammit. Love triangles mess with my emotions. I’ve never been a fan of Shaw, but now I just don’t know how I feel. As the story begins, Thierry has been separated from her new husband, Rook, and she is back home, at least for the next year until she must return to Faerie to be crowned Queen. So she decides to go out on one last vacation with her best friend to Florida. Shaw tags along to work on a case nearby. And of course, she has her two fae guards along with her giant shape shifting cat, Diode.

It’s not all sun and surf. Thierry encounters one obstacle after another from some adversarial selkies to a mysterious phone stalker and an enigmatic fae who targeted her friend with a supernatural roofie. On one hand, Thierry just wants to relax with her best gal pal, but she can’t ignore the wrongs she encounters either. She is still a marshal at heart. [Read more…]

Review: The Rule Breaker by Cat Carmine

Reviewed by Caitlin

I always enjoy Cat Carmine books. They’re fun and sexy and the men always dominate in the bedroom (and are sometimes kinda alpha outside the bedroom too). Even if they can be kind of problematic at times – there are multiple books where the hero is the heroine’s boss and no real conversation about the ethics of that – they’re a very easy read.

Emma Holloway has always followed the rules. She even has an advice column to help others make the “right” decision. She is essentially a 21st century Emily Post. [Read more…]

Review: Kill the Queen by Jennifer Estep

Reviewed by Jen

Kill the Queen is the first in Jennifer Estep’s new high fantasy series Crown of Shards. It feels remarkably like this author’s Elemental Assassin series. The particulars, of course, are different. The setting in particular. However, the heroine reminds me a lot of Gin Blanco and even the feel of the magic has something in common.

Evie is part of the royal family, but just barely. She is 17th in line for the throne, and orphan who is essentially a ward of her cousin, the queen. She is at the bottom of the family food chain. She has to do the ceremonial jobs no one else wants to do: Learn other languages, cultures, dances; she even has to bake special pies. But she does what she must keep a roof over her head and to stay in her cousin’s good graces. Even forces herself to get along with the crown princess Vasilla, who has been cruel to her since childhood. [Read more…]

Review: Consumed by JR Ward

Reviewed by Jen

I was not sure how I would feel about this new offering from JR Ward, after I was so decidedly underwhelmed by her Bourbon Kings series. But unlike that, I think this is designed to be a romance rather than women’s fiction. Overall, I liked it. Ward has a unique writing style that reminded me of her Black Dagger Brotherhood of books, even though the content was very different.

This is a contemporary romance among fire fighters, so it is very high octane. (No pun intended.) It came out of the gate, swinging, with the hero and heroine responding to a fire call. Ann and Danny serve on the same crew and as the story begins, are on the heels of their first tumble into bed. They are crazy about each other, but any relationship between them is sure to be filled with land mines. We don’t really have enough time to explore what may be between them before tragedy strikes. The fire nearly takes Ann’s life, and the only way Danny can save her is to cut off her hand.

Kind of tough to get over. [Read more…]

Review: Heir of the Dog by Hailey Edwards

Reviewed by Jen

After a lukewarm introduction to this series, I wasn’t sure that it would be a good fit for me. But Hailey Edwards has come through again and I am happy to report this installment has made me a fan of the Black Dog books. It makes sense, in a way, when you consider that Dog With a Bone was an added prequel to what was supposed to have been a trilogy that started here. This book is much more engaging and made me care about the heroine in a way that I just didn’t before. And if you choose not to read Dog With a Bone, I’m pretty sure you would be totally fine jumping in here. [Read more…]

Review: Last Night With the Earl by Kelly Bowen

Reviewed by Jen

The more I read from Kelly Bowen, the more I am convinced that her work is right in my lane. This second installment in Devils of Dover series features familiar characters from A Duke in the Night (which I loved!) but this holds up fine as a standalone. Honestly, I expected this installment to be the pinnacle for me. After all, it features a scarred hero, which is usually my catnip. And I did like it. There were just a couple of issues that kept if from being my all-time favorite from this author.

Eli Dawes, the Earl of Rivers, has been missing and assumed dead for years. Badly injured at Waterloo, he was ready to leave his old life behind and hide the disfigurement he endured from an artillery blast. But when solicitors tracked him down at a farm in Belgium after his father’s death, his regret and sense of duty finally drove him home to accept his title. Imagine his surprise to arrive to his family’s country estate to find it rented out to the Haywood family and their school for young ladies. [Read more…]

Review: A Notorious Vow by Joanna Shupe

Reviewed by Jen

I have enjoyed every installment in The Four Hundred series so far, but Joanna Shupe has outdone herself with this third book. It was fantastic.

The blurb sold at this as a young woman who escapes a repugnant suitor by making a marriage of convenience to a reclusive inventor. Let me just say, the blurb did not do this book justice. It leaves out so much about what makes it good. [Read more…]