Mar 6, 2014

Hell Without You by Ranae Rose

Hell Without You

Written by Ranae Rose

Reading Source: Netgalley
Genre: Romance

Clementine did what she thought she had to do in order to protect the young man she loved. Forced to make a choice between breaking both their hearts and leaving or staying and ruining Donovan's life - she decided to leave. Broken hearted and with nothing keeping him, Donovan joined the Marines. Though, he never forgot Clementine, and he never stopped loving her.

Seven years later, fate has brought Donovan and Clementine back to their hometown. From this point, they both struggle with the ever present attraction between the two of them. But life has changed them both. Donovan is suffering from PTSD and having Clementine back in his life has stirred him up to the point he is sleepwalking again. Clementine holds a lot of guilt for leaving Donovan, but she probably would have left again to keep him safe.

The main conflict in this story happens towards the end of the book. Trevor, Clementine's step brother is murdered. Evidence points to Donovan and given the history between the three of them, the police are not looking very hard to find out what really happened.

I found that the resolution to the conflict was anticlimactic. However, this is not a suspense novel in the least, so the lack of action there is not really a fault in the book, it is just a personal preference. The romance feels real between the two characters, and the sex scenes are decent. It's not really an erotica novel - but the scenes are graphic. I found myself not wanting to put the book down. But overall, this is a good light read.

Mar 3, 2014

Domino Effect by Jill Elaine Hughes

Domino Effect

Written by Jill Elaine Hughes

Reading Source: Netgalley
Series: Domino
Book #: 1
Genre: BDSM, Suspense, Erotica

*** Warning Explicit content in both the book and my review. Please do not read if you are under aged ***

I think I am being a little generous with a three star review on this one - but only because the next book has potential. Ellora's Cave publishes erotic literature - I knew what I was getting into - sort of.

Nancy Delaney is white bread with the crust cut off. She works hard, she studies hard - but she does not fuck hard. Not even in the sex scenes in this book. I'm all for virginal leading ladies - I don't find anything wrong with holding on to your V-Card for as long as possible (ladies or gents). But by 22 or there abouts - if you haven't been comfortable enough to explore your sex - then you have no business giving it up to anyone yet. First time sex should be meaningful and erotic - it should not be all of a sudden with someone you barely know.

I know, I know - Izzy you're being too literal here - this is supposed to be fantasy. But can you imagine a young lady who has not even known what her own hand feels like on her most intimate places wanting to be tied up her first time? HER FIRST TIME! I'm a freak. Through and through - and I have been for many years - but the lead up was so sudden it just didn't feel natural.

I don't find Peter Rostovich charming at all. I hope that in the next book he changes. At his showing (or whatever artists do when they have a bunch of their stuff in a gallery) I had thought at the time oOoOhhh - this is gonna be good. He's got a bondage theme going with all his pieces - and the grande finale is sexy and kinky. But over all - I found him to be off putting. I'm all for the strong silent type. But I just couldn't imagine Peter as the barrel chested man he was supposed to be.

I'm picky about sexy books - They gotta be hot. I'll give the author her due in one regard - the imagined sex was hot- I can't really say too much here without spoiling it. But when you get to the part of the book that begins to explain the title - that is when the hot sex comes - but remember it is imagined, not only by you, but the character too. Okay moving on....

This book has a cliff hanger ending - and it bothers me. Not because it isn't a good one - but because I am a completest. I want to see what happens next and if the sex scenes get better. I have a feeling that the next book will be much kinkier. This book seems more like world building than a complete first part to the story.

Over all, it is a decent book. However, I think the second in the series will be where the good stuff is really at.

Let me put a side note here: I like the kinky stuff, and not just in books. So occasionally I like to pick out a book with whips and chains to see if me and my guy can find something new to try. This did not deliver the outcome I had hoped for - but I think the next one will.

Cowboy in my Pocket by Kate Douglas

Cowboy in my Pocket

Written by Kate Douglas

Reading Source: Netgalley
Genre: Cowboy Romance, Parody

I started reading this not knowing what it was - not truly - I hadn't read the blurb about the book. I read the first page and was seriously tempted to stop but I said to myself "Self (because that is how I refer to myself...) you can't do a disservice to yourself by stopping now. You know better than that! Give it a better try." Then I got past the first chapter and I was seriously tempted to stop again - then like magic - It clicked. <face palm> This book is supposed to be a huge cliche. It's poking fun at the major plot themes that are often used individually - but in this case they are all there. All of them!

Michelle is a romance writer who was instructed to write a cowboy romance since they are all the craze. (I mean seriously - who doesn't love a hot guy, organically ripped, who knows how to ride ;D ) Only thing is - Michelle doesn't know a horse from a donkey and her manuscript is laughable (according to her editor). It is decided for Michelle that she will spend a few weeks at a dude ranch - learning how cowboys really are.

Only misfortune strikes - Michelle is in an accident and loses her memory - she no longer knows who she is! In comes Tag Martin - a man on a mission - a mission to pull off an elaborate ruse to fool his grandmother into thinking he has finally found love and gotten married. Only Tag never wants to get married - so the wedding is a sham/marriage-of-convenience. Only his intended "Bride" runs off with a clown - but never fear she set him up with a replacement - only Tag doesn't know her name or what she looks like.

Wonder of wonders - Memory loss Michelle ends up marrying Tag. From this point on Michelle and Tag are trying to fight there attraction and trying to figure out who Michelle really is. (She dubbed herself Lee thinking
that was her real name) Only they can't fight the attraction.

Want to know what I got out of this book??? A life lesson - Sometimes the best way to figure out who you
really are is start with a blank slate.

I enjoyed this book. It was a sweet read with a good side story.


Mar 2, 2014

Dark Surrender by Erica Ridley

Dark Surrender

Written by Erica Ridley

Reading Source: Netgalley
Genre: Historical Romance

I haven't read a historical romance novel in a long time. I got into them a while back and burned myself out by reading them all the time. When I moved on to a different genre, it was because I thought I had read them all - you know... Lord of the Manor is forced into marriage to some dotty backwoods lass - only she is not as dotty as she seems and she ends up causing some epic battle between the Lord and some other dude because she was a twit and brought about a war, etc. Well this is not that story. It is far from that story, and I can't express how happy I was to find that out.

First off - let me preface this by saying this book brought me to tears on more than one occasion. Any book that can evoke emotion in me, be it a big goofy grin, silent tears or body wracking sobs - immediately gets 3.5 stars (see my rating system - that's a good review from me - that's like a B+) Kudos to any author that successfully put me so deep into the story that the emotions of the characters are happening to me.

Violet Whitechapel grew up tough, after finding a place that she could do some good in the world - the safety she felt was unceremoniously ripped right out from under her. She did what she had to in order to prevent a child from being sexually abused by an arrogant rich benefactor. Seeing no other choice, Violet fled. At the end of her coin and her physical ability, she ends up at a dilapidated abbey.

Alistar Waldegrave has lived in the dark for the past nine years. He's had no choice - he will do whatever it takes to protect his daughter. Lillian, Alistar's daughter, has a sensitivity to the sun that is so severe her skin begins to blister almost immediately upon contact. Alistar has spent years searching for a cure and out of fear he has locked Lillian up in the boarded up abbey.

Alistar offered Violet a chance she shouldn't pass up - a chance to be his daughter's governess and sanctuary. Neither expected to find a new light and hope in the romance that sparked between them.

This was a touching story that I really enjoyed.

Feb 25, 2014

Abducted by T.R. Ragan


Written by T.R. Ragan

Reading Source: Audible/Amazon (Whispersync)
Series: Lizzy Gardner
Book #: 1
Genre: Suspense

 I loved this book. It's gritty and dark.

The female lead in this book is Lizzy Gardner. When she was 17 years old, she was kidnapped after a milestone date with her boyfriend just a few blocks from her house. She was held captive and tortured by a sadistic bastard she dubbed Spiderman. Lizzy survived, and was the only victim to escape. However, she wasn't the only one to escape, Spiderman did too - causing Lizzy to spend the next fourteen years worrying about a repeat of the creepy and traumatic experience at the hands of Spiderman.

After a fourteen year hiatus, Spiderman is back and he's targeting Lizzy - who is now a private investigator and instructs teenage girls on how to defend themselves. She has locked away the trauma, or so she thought. After getting a phone call from Spiderman, her mental defenses start falling. Her boyfriend from fourteen years ago is now in the FBI, and needs Lizzy's help. When Spiderman pulls her family into his twisted version of hide and seek, Lizzy is determined to end this terror once and for all.

Spiderman is sick and uses creepy crawlies to torment his victims. The torture scenes in this book are not for the weak of heart. It was amazing. Get it!

Feb 24, 2014

Agnes and the Hitman by Jennifer Crusie & Bob Mayer

Agnes and the Hitman
Written by Jennifer Crusie and Bob Mayer

Reading Source: Audible

Genre: Romance, Comedy, Light Suspense

I absolutely LOVE this book. I have read it and listened to it at least 4 times.

Agnes is bent, seriously. She's insane - and her best friend thinks so too - but she's amazing just the way she is. Having had a crappy childhood - Agnes can't stand liars - so needless to say, she's got some not-so-repressed anger.

Shane is the strong silent type - he's about action and loyalty. So when his uncle Joey, "The Gent," calls him back to protect "Little Agnes," Shane is there, expecting to find some kid - lo and behold, he finds a cranky food columnist that has somehow found herself in the middle of a deadly Mob/Government conspiracy.

Throw in a crazy woman from Jersey and a cameo from "Don't Look Down" (I'd give you a hint - but the point would be moot) and you've got an action packed romantic comedy. I love this book. There really isn't much else I can say - Follow the link above to Amazon and buy the book!!

Feb 23, 2014

Back Again

So... It has been a very, very long time since anyone has posted here.

This isn't a "personal blog" - so I wont go into extreme detail. I've been dealing with a new job (minor interruption) and family obligations (major interruption).

Riona will no longer be  reviewing with me. She and her husband are trying to start a family and she wants to focus on the little bit of immediate family they have in the States.

I'll do my best to post reviews as often as possible.