Monday, April 30, 2012

Temptation & Twilight by Charlotte Featherstone

(No Spoilers)

Temptation & Twilight is the third and final book in the Brethren Guardians series and is filled with twists & turns, angst & heartache, passion & romance… it’s safe to say, this story has it all, and it’s delivered with so much sensuality that the entire experience feels like a dream.

From his very first words in Seduction & Scandal I’ve been captivated by Iain Sinclair, the man, the kilt and what’s not under it, the brogue that slips through when his guard is down… everything about him has attracted me. We’ve come to see him as an unrepentant rake, a self indulgent man who knows what he wants and will stop at nothing to get it, regardless of who gets hurt. But all that aside, finally getting to know the real Iain, the man who’s so self deprecatingly vulnerable that he dares not show that side of himself to anyone, not even his friends, I couldn’t help but fall hard for him.

We’ve also seen quite a bit of Elizabeth, sister to Adrian, Lord Sussex, in previous books, and yet never really gotten to know her. That all changes in this story as we’re allowed a deeper look into her sightless life, her fears, her dreams… and what an amazing woman she is. Though I knew she and Iain would one day have their own story, I never really felt them as a couple, but all those doubts are gone now and in my mind and heart, they are the perfect match.

Even though we finally learn the true identity of that purely evil being, Orpheus, and understand the true reasons why the Brethren Guardians became his target, I’m sorry to say that this story moved a bit slow for me, the plot never grabbing hold as it did in the previous books. It was Iain and Elizabeth who kept me coming back for more, waiting and watching as they put their pasts, their heartbreak and their mistrust behind him to move forward and find their happily ever after, one so richly deserved.

Temptation & Twilight was provided by in behalf of Harlequin/HQN in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Colby Law by Debra Webb

Colby Law is the forty-eighth - yes, you read that right - book in the Colby Agency series, and a heartwarming, exciting, steamy story that begins a new case for the well known and respected private investigation firm.

Colby Investigator Lyle McCaleb is sent to Texas to investigate what the press had dubbed the Princess Killer case, a decades old serial killing spree that devastated a small Texas community. The crimes were made even more abhorrent because the victims were all young girls, and the evidence pointed to Clare and Rafe Barker, a well respected couple whose involvement further rocked their town. But twenty years later Clare is set free on appeal and information comes out suggesting that Rafe, who initially confessed to the crime, isn’t guilty, and that Clare might be the sole killer. Unfortunately that information comes from Rafe himself which makes the Colby Agency dubious at best. When Rafe tells them that his wife will go after three girls who went missing and were presumed dead – his own daughters – and asks the agency to keep the girls safe, they have no choice but to check in to the possibility that he’s telling the truth.

Enter Sadie Gilmore who seven years ago was Lyle’s ‘one-that-got-away’ – except it was Lyle who did the leaving. As he tries to protect Sadie without telling her who her parents might be, while also working to regain her trust, things begin to heat up between them, rekindling what had been left unfinished. Can Lyle keep his cool while fighting the feelings growing between them, or will he lose it and risk losing Sadie in the process?

Colby Law is my first taste of Debra Webb’s writing and I thoroughly enjoyed the way she told this tale. The story is interesting and definitely unique, and the characters are people I became invested in. I cannot wait to read the rest of the books making up this case!

3.5 of 5 stars

This ebook was provided by in behalf of Harlequin Intrigue in exchange for an honest review.   

Sunday, April 15, 2012

The Many Sins of Lord Cameron by Jennifer Ashley

He is a man of simple tastes - and complex pleasures...

Cameron Mackenzie is a man who loves only horses and women - in that order - or so his mistresses say.

Ainsley Douglas is a woman with a strong sense of justice and the desire to help others - even if that means sneaking around a rakish man's bedchamber.

Which is exactly where Cam finds her - six years after he caught her the first time. Only then, she convinced Cam she was seeking a liaison, but couldn't go through with it because of her husband. Now a widow, she's on a mission to retrieve letters that could prove embarrassing to the queen. Cam has no interest in Ainsley's subterfuge, but he vows to finish what they started those many years ago. One game, one kiss at a time, he plans to seduce her. And what starts out as a lusty diversion may break Cam's own rules - and heal the scars of a dark and damaging past...


The Many Sins of Lord Cameron is the third book in the Highland Pleasures series and wow… what an amazing story!

Many people have asked me whose story I liked better; Cam’s or Ian’s? The thing about answering a question like this is that it’s like comparing apples and oranges, or in this case, the finest Kentucky Bourbon and hundred year old Scotch! Both are amazing in their own ways and depending on your mood, you’d choose one over the other. But when it’s all said and done, both warm you up, make you feel all tingly inside, and one finger just isn't enough ;)

Another way to describe the differences would be to say that when I need to hold someone, to soothe them, bring them peace, I’d choose Ian. If I’m in the mood to tame someone, to ease their burdens and bring comfort to their soul, I’d choose Cameron. And make no mistake about it, Cam is a man in desperate need of taming and comfort.

So let’s talk about Lord Cameron and his many sins. To say I adore this story is to say the least. From the first page to the last, I couldn’t get enough of Cameron and Ainsley. Where one is weak, the other is strong, where one is restlessness, the other is tranquility and because of this, together they are invincible…the perfect match… which they prove time and time again. Cameron’s wicked ways have us believing that he’s nothing but an insensitive rake, but we soon learn that there’s much more to Cam than meets the eye. His tortured soul, his vulnerability… but for a man with his reputation, his sins are not so many. That’s not to say he isn’t wicked, because he most assuredly is, and in the most delightfully scrumptious ways. And like all the Mackenzie brothers, he’s honorable, stubborn, demanding and goes commando under his wears a kilt.

I suppose, to be fair, I should mention Ainsley a bit more, too, but I won’t. Why? Because while I thought they were perfect together, it was Cameron Mackenzie who made this an amazing story.

So there you have it, my totally random ramblings about The Many Sins of Lord Cameron and it should go without saying that I’m dying to read Hart’s book next!        

5 of 5 stars!!!!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Lover Reborn by J.R. Ward

“The quick and the dead are all the same.
Everyone’s just looking for home.” - LASSITER
(Spoilers are marked)

Hear ye! Hear ye!
Leteth it be known that on this day, March 31st, 2012, I solemnly vow that I shall never doubt the WARDen again!

So, now that that's out of the way, my thoughts on the book...
I wasn’t sure she could do it. Pffffft! Silly me.

I didn't think she could pull it off. *sigh* Whatever was I thinking?

And had I had actually considered skipping this book and not reading it at all? Yes, yes I had. *hangs head in shame*

In fact, I've spent the past year angsting and fretting and worried and crying and angry… and over what? That Wellsie would be replaced? That the whole ‘Wellsie can’t move on until you do…’ storyline would feel too contrived? That I'd have to sit through more Qhuay drama than any human being should be forced to endure? Yes, in fact, I worried about all of those things and much, much more, but like I told my Goodreads friends in the JR WARD BLACK DAGGER BROTHERHOOD GROUP, never, ever, will I doubt the WARDen again!

Okay, let's get down to business...spoiler thoughts:

Tohr and Autumn and their story:
I honestly wasn't sure what to think about No'One because we'd never been given enough of her character to form any real impressions. I'm thrilled to say that I think she's all kinds of awesome! I loved that she didn't try to hide behind her mistakes, that she came out, faced them, admitted to them, and did everything she could to make things right.

And Tohr... what a male of worth! Amazing, honorable, hot... But wow... I felt so much pain for him. The WARDen did a great job, I think, of showing that it was not easy for him to let go. That it tore him apart to even think about it. In this one book I was able to feel what he'd been living for the past years since Wellsie's death, and I needed to feel those emotions in order to buy this story.

This was a tough one for me, because I was very upset, very worried about Wellsie being replaced, worried that it would be a 'they were never meant to be' couple... but I think the WARDen did a fantastic job of handling a difficult subject and she did it with compassion, understanding, and a great deal of love and respect all the way around.

That's not to say that I'm not sad still. Even after I finished the book, I cried for Tohr and Wellsie, and their baby, Tohrment, son of Tohrment, and for all that had been taken from them. I'm truly not sure if I'll ever be okay with it, but it is what it is.

John Matthew and Xhex: I always thought it was a little easy for JM to accept Xhex as a fighter. It just seemed too simple for a bonded male to be able to send his mate out into the field and be okay with it. That's why their story in Lover Reborn, I felt, was perfect. We finally were able to see how JM really felt, and how his feelings affected Xhex. I really appreciated this glimpse into their relationship and am thrilled for the way things worked out for them.

The Band of Bastards: I can't say enough about them. I hated them, despised them, sat imagining all kinds of horrible ways to kill them, and loved every single minute of it! I can't wait to read more, especially about Xcor. He's the Bastard I'm most excited about!

Assail: Hot damn! I'm digging Assail... I wonder if he's part Sympath and that's how he and Xhex knew each other?! He's a male to watch!

Qhuinn and Blay: Over the years I've become ambivilant about their story. I had reached the point where I just wanted their book so it would end already... be put out of my misery! I thought if I had to spend even a moment more watching their crap I'd rather drink bleach!!!

Yes, well, that's all changed. In one scene of several paragraphs, Qhuinn took me from loathing them to adoring them, and I am so, so stoked that their book is next!!!!

Layla: I still say she's a female of worth who's just misunderstood.

The epilogue: You can't get much more Harlequin Presents than this without changing publishers.

What made this book all kinds of brilliant...

The entire message of this book is summed up by Qhuinn, in one of the best, most poignant scenes of any Black Dagger Brotherhood book ever, and had me throwing fist punches and shouting, YES!:

All that simple-and-easy ended as he turned around. In the library, through the open doors, he saw Blay and Saxton talking. And then his cousin stepped in and pulled Blay into his arms. As the pair of them stood together, body on body, Qhuinn took a deep breath and felt a little death of his own come to him.

He guessed this was how it ended for them.

Separate lives, separate futures.

Hard to think that they had started out inseparable—

Abruptly, Blay’s blue stare found his.

And what Qhuinn saw in it caused him to falter: Love shone out of that face, unadulterated love untempered by the shyness that was very much a part of his reserve.

Blay didn’t look away.

And for the first time… neither did Qhuinn.

He didn’t know whether the emotion was about his cousin—it probably was—but he’d take it: He stared right back at Blaylock and let everything he had in his heart show in his face.

He just let that shit fly.

Because there was a lesson in this Fade ceremony tonight: You could lose the ones you loved in the blink of an eye—and he was willing to bet, when it happened, you weren’t thinking about all the reasons that could have kept you apart. You thought of all the reasons that kept you together.

And, no doubt, how you wished you’d had more time. Even if you’d had centuries…

When you were young, you thought time was a burden, something to be discharged as fast as possible so you could be grown-up. But it was such a bait-n-switch—when you were an adult, you came to realize that minutes and hours were the single most precious thing you had.

No one got forever. And it was a fucking crime to waste what you were given.

Enough, Qhuinn thought. Enough with the excuses, and the avoidance, and the trying to be someone, anyone else.

Even if he got shanked, even if his precious little ego and his dumb-ass little heart got shattered into a million pieces, it was time to stop the bullshit.

It was time to be a male.

As Blay started to straighten, like a message had been received, Qhuinn thought, That’s right, buddy.

Our future has come.

AMEN Qhuinn!!! And the future doesn't get better than that!

One final thought...

And in closing, I feel the need to point out that I'm thrilled that I am not the one who has to change the sheets in the Brothers' rooms at the Mansion. You couldn't pay me enough.

Just sayin'....

Friday, April 6, 2012

A Wild Night's Bride by Victoria Vane

A Wild Night’s Bride, the first book in the The Devil DeVere series, is an erotic, historical romance and is, as I’ve come to expect from this author, filled with humor, passion, and a fun, sinfully sexy storyline. Once again I’ve been whisked away to Georgian England, this time for a comical adventure taking place in the form of a challenge!
“I have a proposal.” All eyes turned to the Prince of Wales, grinning like a monkey escaped from the aforementioned Royal Menagerie. “And one that has certainly never been done before. But I fear, even you, DeVere, may not wish to risk the consequences.”

“And why not?” asked DeVere.

“Because failing would mean much more than the loss of your gold. It would almost certainly land you in the tower.”

“Indeed?” All trace of boredom had left DeVere’s face. “I am fascinated to hear more, Your Highness. What would you lay before me?”

“I challenge you this night to take a woman of pleasure into the Bed of State at St. James Palace and bring back to me the soiled monogrammed sheet as proof.”

“You wish me to defile the king’s bed with a whore?” DeVere roared with unbridled mirth.

The prince smiled. “A bit crudely put, but precisely.”
Phoebe Alice Scott, also known as Kittie Willis, wants so desperately to be an actress that she'll do just about anything to make her dream come true. Sir Edward Chambers, Ned to his friends, is a widower of four years and such a noble fellow that he'll do just about anything to keep Phoebe from doing something stupid. And Viscount Ludovic DeVere, more commonly referred to as The Devil DeVere, a shameless rake, would love nothing more than to thwart Ned, assist Phoebe, while doing it all in the name of friendship. Together, the three of them take us on a wild ride filled with twists and turns, machinations and maneuverings that are sure to have you giggling one minute and fanning yourself the next, and most definitely enjoying yourself every step of the way!

This delightfully sinful ebook was provided by Breathless Press and author Victoria Vane in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Weeknights With Giada

Weeknights with Giada - Quick and Simple Recipes to Revamp Dinner is exactly the kind of Italian cookbook I’ve been looking for. It’s loaded with easy to follow recipes and gorgeous pictures, making this the kind of recipe collection that quickly becomes an absolute favorite.

Table of Contents:

soups & salads
bruschettas,sandwiches & pizzas
pasta & grains
meat, poultry & fish
change of pace
breakfast for dinner
veggies & sides

Another thing I loved about this collection is that these aren’t the same old Italian recipes you find in any cookbook. Whether it’s a casual meal for your family or something a little more formal for friends, you'll find that Weeknights with Giada will quickly become your go-to Italian cookbook for easy to prepare, delicious meals you can be proud of!! And best of all, this book doesn’t just make it easy for you to cook, it inspires you to cook!