Review: The Governess Game by Tessa Dare

Reviewed by Jen

I always look forward to reading a new book from Tessa Dare. They are always so witty and charming. This book was no exception, although I felt that the laughs were just a little fewer and further between.

Our heroine is Alex, friend to Emma, the last book’s heroine. We do not know a lot about her off the bat, except that she is interested in astronomy, she is an orphan, and she struggles to support herself. She first met Chase at a bookstore, although met may be too strong of a word. They bumped into each other and shared a bit of a moment… a moment she has spent the past several months fantasizing about in her head.

She doesn’t truly meet Chase until several months later when she shows up at his home, hoping to set his clocks. Imagine her disappointment to find the object of her affection is really a bit of libertine. He seems interested only in picking up women and shoving off responsibility for his two young wards. He doesn’t seem to recall their meeting in the bookstore in the slightest, and in fact, mistakes Alex for a possible governess and hires her on the spot. [Read more…]

Jen’s Favorites of 2017

For me, 2017 meant a lot of writing, moving (again!), and some new responsibilities at work. When you put all of that together, it equals less reading time for me than ever before. I came across a few stinkers (which I had to mark DNF despite my best efforts,) but I also added a few awesome books to my keeper-shelf.

Every year, Ilona Andrews tops my list. Part of me is embarrassed that I must be so predictable by now, but it’s not my fault. I swear if she ever writes something I don’t love, I’ll tell you the truth. In this case, it’s a two-fer in her Hidden Legacy series. White Hot and Wildfire came out really close together and that was a huge win for fans who had to wait an age after Burn For Me. These books feature such fantastic world building, awesome characters, and an exciting enemies-to-lovers romance that hit all my happy buttons. If you’re a Kate Daniels fan or heck, if you like UF/PNR at all… jump into this series with both feet. I promise you won’t regret it. [Read more…]

Joint Review: The Duchess Deal by Tessa Dare

Reviewed by Joanna & Jen

Jen: Oh wow! How I loved this this book. It had two things going for it right off the bat. One, it was written by Tessa Dare who is one of my absolute faves in historical romance. And two, it is a Beauty and the Beast trope, which is also a favorite of mine. I am thrilled to say that not only did it come through on the promise of its premise, it was even better than I expected.

Joanna: I have something to admit. *looks embarrassed* I’ve never read any Tessa Dare.

Jen: Jo! I am so sorry for you.

Joanna: I know! I can’t tell you how it happened, but I have settled the score with this beauty. It’s sparkling, pacy and lighthearted, and I laughed out loud time and time again. [Read more…]

Jen’s Favorites of 2016

I haven’t read quite as many books this year as I did in years past. Part of the reason is the huge life changes that came with a new job and a major move for my family. The other came with my sudden burning desire to write a book of my own.

So my reading list was shorter, but I still found some great titles in 2016! [Read more…]

Review: Do You Want to Start a Scandal by Tessa Dare

do-you-want-to-start-a-scandalReviewed by Jen

Oh Tessa Dare, how I love thee. Seriously, her books are like candy. This one made me laugh. It gave me two solid characters that I cared about. And it gave me a romance I could root for. Really, what more could you ask for?

This is a Spindle Cove novel, but the story takes us to a new location, as our heroine Charlotte and her mother attend a house party. It’s a perfect opportunity for a set-up and Charlotte knows exactly the marquess her mom would like to get her hooks in. So she decides to be proactive and beat her to it. Charlotte approaches Piers, Lord Granville, in the library to warn him. [Read more…]

Review: A Week to Be Wicked by Tessa Dare

week to be wickedReviewed by Jen

What a fantastic romance! Tessa Dare consistently delivers engaging, smart, and stirring stories, with a romances I can root for and characters I can care about. Honestly, I was a little concerned about how this hero was going to appeal to me. He wasn’t my favorite in the first book. But I am happy to say that Colin won me over with his loveable mix of affable charm and utter vulnerability. He is an unrepentant rake, but he truly believes he can never be anything more. Until he is completely undone by an awkward bluestocking who sees though the very heart of him. [Read more…]

Jen’s Favorite Books of 2015

It’s hard to believe we’re leaving another great year of reading behind us. In 2015, I found it more difficult to find books that suit my taste. I don’t care to read about billionaire bachelors, rock stars, step-brothers, biker gangs, or BDSM. Take a minute and think about how many titles fell into those categories last year.  I did a lot of backlist reading to fill in the gaps.

There were some really good new releases that I did enjoy; they were just more scarce. Here’s a look at some of the 2015 releases that really satisfied. [Read more…]

Review: Lord Dashwood Missed Out by Tessa Dare

lord dashwood missed outReviewed by Jen

I love Tessa Dare and her Spindle Cove series. I like that all of her heroines are unusual in some way and that they find love despite the fact that they defy convention. Here, Nora fits the bill. She is an author of a popular pamphlet on her way to Spindle Cove for a reading. The subject: the man who left her and missed out on the happiness should could have given him. It’s all about acknowledging her own worth and refusing to define herself by a man’s attention. It’s good stuff. But I can’t say the same about the hero.

Lord Dashwood was Nora’s brother’s best friend. She nursed a crush on him for most of her life and it seemed they would end up together. But for some reason, he turned his back on her. He humiliated her. And he left to explore the world. She never expected to see him again, until she was unexpectedly trapped with him in a carriage on the way to Spindle Cove. [Read more…]

Review: When a Scot Ties the Knot by Tessa Dare

when a scot ties the knotReviewed by Jen

I loved this book! It is funny and charming, sexy and romantic.  The characters are fabulous. The pacing is spot on. There’s a love story I can believe in and an ending that totally satisfies. What more can you want?

Madeline loves living a quiet, solitary existence. She doesn’t need to be alone necessarily, but she hates to be surrounded by people. Crowds make her panic and the idea of coming out amid crushing balls simply terrifies her. So she invents a foreign paramour who conveniently has to leave the country and serve as a soldier before anyone in her family can meet him. She picks a name out of thin air: Captain Logan MacKenzie, and she precedes to write him letters to keep up appearances. She thinks the missives will end up in a dead letter office, so they become a diary of a sort, sharing the details of her ruse, and later, her life.  Of course, she has no idea there actually is a soldier by that name, who comes to receive every single one of the letters she sends over several years time. [Read more…]

Review: A Night to Surrender by Tessa Dare

night to surrenderReviewed by Jen

If you are looking for an engaging historical romance, with interesting and fleshed out characters, you can count on Tessa Dare.  Not only does she give us a couple we can root for, she makes them sympathetic, sexy, and entertaining in equal measure. The premise is great. The dialogue is snappy.  And it held my attention from the first page until the last. [Read more…]