DNF Review: Earl To The Rescue by Jane Ashford

Reviewed by Sara

Earl To The Rescue is the story of Gwendeline Gregory, daughter of the Baron Gregory of Brooklands and his wife Annabelle. While she was young, Baron and Baroness Brooklands spent only a week out of the year with Gwendeline and were as uninvolved in her upbringing as possible. So, when they die in an ill-defined accident, Gwendeline, is less upset about her parents being dead as she is about the fact that they spent all of their savings and have left her penniless and soon to be homeless, since their debts require their estate to be sold off.

However, Gwendeline, is rescued by a the incredibly popular Lore Merryn, who, while surprised that Gwendeline is 19 years old and not an infant, is committed, along with a group of like minded gentlemen, to caring for her and helping her be introduced favorably into the ton. Gwendeline is whisked away to London where she is put up with Lord Merryn’s mother, a novelist, and begins making the round of parties. Here, she learns that her parents were general reprobates and begins to meet various characters. [Read more…]

Review: Fall by Kristen Callihan

Reviewed by Sara

Fall is book three in Kristen Callihan’s VIP series. In it, Jill-of-all-trades and professional friend, Stella Grey and John “Jax” Blackwood have one of the best meet-cutes I’ve read in a long time and then, through fate become neighbors. Both Stella and John are guarded and mistrustful of others. Stella, because she was abandoned by her grifter father shortly after the death of her mother and John, because of past family issues and because he is the lead guitarist for international recording sensation, Kill John.

While Stella doesn’t immediately recognize John as the infamous Jax Blackwood, once she does she realizes why he lives like a hermit. Just over a year or so before Fall takes place, John attempted suicide by overdosing on heroin. Since then, his reputation has been dragged through the mud and the family he had in his band and management has been fractured. [Read more…]

DNF Review: Want Me, Cowboy by Maisey Yates

Reviewed by Sara

I like to think of myself as a pretty discerning Romance reader; I know what I like, I know what I don’t like, and I know what I’m willing to try. At the moment, though, I’m feeling pretty bamboozled, a little hoodwinked, and kind of annoyed.

I like the concept of Maisey Yates’ third Cooper Ridge book, Want Me, Cowboy and I assumed I’d really like the book. Maisey Yates writes about Isaiah, a rugged, cowboy-esque, billionaire who wants to find a wife, but he’s been hurt by a past relationship and has trouble expressing his emotions. So he does what anyone in his shoes would do. (That’s sarcasm. Be prepared for lots of that.) He asks his assistant, Poppy, to put a want ad out for a wife. After several interviews, he discovers, to his complete surprise, that Poppy, his assistant of over a decade, is the perfect candidate for all things wife related. [Read more…]

Review: Shades of Wicked by Jeaniene Frost

Reviewed by Sara

Shades of Wicked by Jeaniene Frost is a Paranormal Romance, book one in her Night Rebel series and set in the world of her highly acclaimed (at least by me) Night Huntress series. It is the story of Master Vampire, Ian, and vampire Law Guardian, Veritas. The two characters are as different from each other as oil and water; Ian being a hedonist of the highest order and Veritas an employee of what is essentially the vampire community’s version of a police force. What they do have in common is a demon named Dagon.

Thousands of years ago, Veritas was the prisoner of Dagon and forced to do horrible things in his name. Now, she sees an opportunity for justice, but needs a way to get Dagon’s attention when her plan is ready. When Ian sold his soul to Dagon he made it possible for Dagon to teleport to him any time the demon wishes. Veritas sees Ian as a means to an end and hopes to use him, but she wasn’t expecting him to be such an accomplished magic user, something illegal in the vampire world, or to be so honorable. Soon what starts as as her using Ian becomes an uneasy alliance and then a partnership as Veritas begins to development feelings for Ian. [Read more…]

Review: Dil Or No Dil by Suleikha Snyder

Reviewed by Sara

To be honest, I don’t generally read a lot of short story collections. I usually find them slightly frustrating because, if the stories and character are good, I generally want more than what a short story has to offer. Furthermore, I’ve never read anything by author Suleikha Snyder. So, I was a little unsure about how I would enjoy Dil or No Dil, but it was on sale and I was between books. Spoiler alert: It was fantastic!

The collection contains older stories, dating as far back as 2011, and new stories made available for the first time in this collection. There are eight in all. The stories range in length from several pages to as many as 13 chapters and contain many elements of and references to the author’s Indian background. I was really blown away by how much I really enjoyed Dil or No Dil and especially the variations of the stories. Some of the stories, were f/f, others were m/m, most were typical m/f pairings, but then some the m/f stories included older female characters and younger male love interests which aren’t typical of Romance as a genre at all. Some of the stories were of the insta-lust/love variety and other were love stories that, while told over only a couple of pages, spanned decades. [Read more…]

Joint Review: First Earl I See Tonight

Reviewed by Jen & Sara

Jen: This is my first book by Anna Bennett and though I had a few small issues, I found it an easy, pleasant read that I enjoyed overall.

The heroine, Fiona, is being blackmailed. Apparently, someone knows the truth of her sister’s parentage and will expose the secret unless Fiona pays him off. Before I get too far, I’ll say that my problems began here. I felt like it strained credibility that a wealthy family would raise a baby left on their doorstep and it took way too long to establish the particulars of the family dynamic. A) That they raised this orphan as their own. (I thought maybe she was the father’s bastard at first.) And B) the Mama in the story is actually Fiona’s step-mother and not even the woman who took the sister in.

Anyway, Fiona loves her sister so much that she is determined to pay the blackmailer, but the only way she can do it is by getting married and using part of her marriage portion. So she proposes to David Gray, the Earl of Ravenport. Gray is an impoverished nobleman who showed her kindness once. But he is skeptical about marriage since his betrothed dumped him. The woman took one look at his ramshackle estate and threw him over. He is determined to bring the property back to greatness, though, for the sake of his grandmother. [Read more…]

Review: Sin and Ink by Naima Simone

Reviewed by Sara

Sin and Ink is a Contemporary Romance that follows the story of Knox, a former MMA fighter and now proprietor of Chicago tattoo shop, and Eden, Knox’s office manager and his late brother Connor’s widow. Eden’s was widowed two years before the book begins when her husband, also an MMA fighter, was knocked out and a previously undetected aneurysm bursts. She’s just now starting to crawl out from under her crushing grief and gain her independence. She is also in love with Knox.

Luckily for Eden, Knox has been secretly in love with her since the first time he saw her, before her marriage to his brother. He never would have said anything or done anything, but his mother saw and when Connor died, Knox’s mother confronted him in a state of hysteria accusing him of Connor’s death and making him promise never to touch Eden. Knox tries to bury his feelings in meaningless sex and by treating Eden as if she were a sister. One chance encounter ruins all Knox’s best laid plans and the two discover their feelings for each other and give in to the chemistry they create. The question is, will it last? Can Eden become independent and begin her life again, this time with Knox by her side and will Knox allow the secrets of his past and the accusations of his mother destroy his chance at love? [Read more…]

Review: Rafe by Rebekah Weatherspoon

Reviewed by Sara

There are plenty of books about nannies. Usually they’re women seduced by the attractive billionaire, mysterious Greek tycoon or the rakish duke.

*yawn*  So, when I saw author Rebekah Weatherspoon tweet about a ginger, bearded and tattooed, motorcycle riding nanny helping a successful and smart single-mom, I was in.

Dr. Sloan Copeland is a young cardiac surgeon in L.A. with two adorable twin 6 year olds. A former child prodigy with an obnoxious ex-husband trying to win her back, she’s left in the lurch when her nanny up and leaves mid-shift. Luckily, she’s got good friends who recommend Rafe Whitcomb. Sloan’s immediately attracted to Rafe, but isn’t sure about how the hot, tattooed white guy will be with her girls. Thankfully Rafe quickly demonstrates a well of limitless compassion and excellent child-tending skills. These and Rafe’s excellent references help Sloan decide to bring Rafe into her family. [Read more…]

Review: Shadow and Ice by Gena Showalter

Reviewed by Sara

Several years ago I was a pretty huge fan of Gena Showalter’s Lords of the Underworld (LOTU) series. I eventually fell away from the series and haven’t read anything from Showalter since. When I saw that she was beginning a new series unrelated to LOTU, I was excited to see what she was writing and how it would differ from her previous work.

Shadow and Ice, the debut novel in Showalter’s Gods of War series follows the adventures of Knox and Vale. On a disastrous trip abroad, Vale and her sister Nola come across what looks like a group of otherworldly warriors frozen in blocks of ice. Little do they know that the immortal warriors have been frozen for centuries and are part of an interstellar, winner takes all battle for the ownership of Earth. Believing that they’ve come across a movie set, they’re surprised when the warriors burst into life. Things soon spiral out of control and Vale is taken by Knox and Nola by the warrior Zion. Fearful for her sister who suffers from debilitating fibromyalgia, Vale makes a deal with Knox to help him in exchange for assistance getting her sister back. [Read more…]

Review: Runaway Girl by Tessa Bailey

Reviewed by Sara

In Runaway Girl, the follow-up to Tessa Bailey’s Getaway Girl, Naomi Clemons has an epiphany just before she’s about to walk down the aisle. She realizes she’s nothing more than a pretty face. She’s never done anything with her life, and if she goes through with her wedding she’ll be committing to a boring, passionless lifetime as a trophy wife and party hostess to a man who can’t even remember what she likes to drink. So, she hits the road, committed to living her life to the fullest only to discover that she lacks the skills to support herself on her adventure. It’s at a Florida truck stop, while a stranger helps her maneuver a bathroom stall in her wedding dress that she applies for the only job she has any training in, a pageant coach. Which is how she meets Jason Bristow. [Read more…]