Friday, December 28, 2012

The Professional/The Player (Men Out Of Uniform #13 & #1)

This book was read as an Advance Reading Copy (ARC) provided for free by the publisher and

Two books were combined into one double book The Professional: The Professional/The Player.

BookThe Professional (Men Out Of Uniform series #13)

AuthorRhonda Nelson

Rating: M (for Mature Audiences – nothing that you would find in your run of the mill romance novel)

Bookshelves: 2012, fiction, Georgia, military, romance, USA,

Begun: December 12, 2012
Finished: December 15, 2012

Media Type: eBook (read on the Kindle app on a Nexus 7)

Setting: Georgia, USA

Characters: Jeb Anderson and Sophie O’Brien

Synopsis: Someone is stealing valuables at a very pricey and very exclusive old age community. This place is the place to retire to and someone is running around exploiting the elderly and taking valuable jewelry out of locked safes. Jeb Anderson is a retired Army Ranger whose twin brother, Judd, is also in the service and is currently stationed overseas but is on leave. Jeb has taken the job of finding out who is stealing the valuables and his first suspect is Sophie O’Brien, a vivacious and pretty massage therapist who owns her own farm and makes soaps that are sold at the retirement community. But, Sophie’s not his thief and there are dark secrets hidden in her closet. Can the two come together to find the jewel thief in a retirement community where the residents act like it’s spring break all year long?

Review: This was a very cute, quick, and well written read. I loved the backstory on both main characters and how Rhonda Nelson really pulled you in to the plot from the very beginning. Sophie’s back story kind of came to an abrupt ending which I think might have been a little more dramatic is it had been drawn out and played with a little more, but, overall, it was a good book.

BookThe Player (Men Out of Uniform series #1)

AuthorRhonda Nelson

Rating: M (for Mature Audiences – nothing that you would find in your run of the mill romance novel)

Bookshelves: 2012, fiction, Maine, military, romance, USA,

Begun: December 12, 2012
Finished: December 15, 2012

Media Type: eBook (read on the Kindle app on a Nexus 7)

Setting: Maine, USA

Characters:  Jamie Flanagan, Audrey Kincaid

Synopsis: Jamie Flanagan owed Colonel Garrett a favor. How else would he have ended up at a “distressing” camp in Maine called Unwind? No on his own, that’s for damn sure. This tough as nails ex-US Army Ranger would rather be back on the battlefields than painting pictures and talking about his feeling. And the only thing he’s feel right now is hot for the girl he’s supposed to be guarding, Audrey Kincaid, owner and proprietress of Unwind … and Colonel Garrett’s granddaughter. A raven haired beauty, Audrey left the world of financial analysis after having a heart attack at age 26. Now she’s stuck with an emotional vampire of a boyfriend who is asking her to marry him (with the ultimatum that he will dump her if she says “no”) and a hot, hot, hot colleague of her grandfather that is having trouble getting over the death of a battle buddy. What’s a girl to do?

Review: This was another well written, great, quick read. I was kind of hoping to get Judd Anderson’s (Jeb Anderson’s twin from The Professional (the first part of this book)) story but Jamie’s story was very good also. After reading these two stories, I do plan to go out and get the rest of the books in this series.

 In my opinion, this book gets:

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Doctor Knows Best

AuthorBetty Glen

Rating: X (for erotica and sex as main plot)

Bookshelves: 2012, erotica, fiction, medical, romance,

Begun: Dec. 16, 2012
Finished: Dec. 16, 2012

Media Type: eBook (Kindle app read on Nexus 7)

Setting: A doctor’s office (presumably in the USA)

Characters: Dr. Chad Carson, Eve Kline, Darlene

Synopsis: Eve Kline works in Dr. Chad Carson’s doctor office and has been having a huge problem … she can’t help but get aroused when Dr. Carson is around. It’s ruining her job and she just can’t stand for anything to bother her as much as Dr. Carson is. He’s sexy and passionate about his job but all Eve wants is to know what he’s like in bed. When her gynecologist cancels her appointment at the last minute, Dr. Carson offers to give her an exam (not knowing that this is for a sexual problem). What will happen when the sexy doctor is asked to help Eve with a problem that he is creating?!?

Review: Sexy and provocative, I liked this very short novella. Definitely not a long read but worth it for a short thrill. Dr. Carson’s character easily could have been mad a more dynamic character. But what can you do when it’s like 300 words long. I liked it and would look for other books by Glen.

In my opinion, this book gets:

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Five Days Grace (The McRae's series #4)

This book was read as an Advance Reading Copy (ARC) provided for free by the publisher and

AuthorTeresa Hill

Rating: M (mature reading audiences)

Bookshelves: 2012, Afghanistan, fiction, infidelity, Ohio, mistaken identity, romance, USA, war veteran, wounded warrior,

Begun: September 28, 2012
Finished: October 2, 2012

Media Type: eBook (read on Bluefire app on iPhone)

Setting: Ohio

Characters: Aidan Shaw, Grace McRae

Synopsis: Grace is escaping the memory of her husband. She was supposed to be headed to visit her in laws for the first time since her husband’s death months prior but she just couldn't bring herself to show up. And not because she was devastated over his death. She loved her husband, but the fool had been cheating on her with someone from the University at which he taught. Grace decided to high tail it to the McRae’s family cabin on a remote lake. But when she gets there, she has to deal with an intruder.

All wounded Naval Intelligence Officer Aidan Shaw wanted was a quiet place to convalesce after his helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan and all his crew killed. Mentally and emotionally scared, Aidan is instructed by his commanding officer to lay low while he recuperates because there is also someone after him.

In walks Grace to the secluded cabin and scares the pant of Aidan who draws a weapon on her until he realizes that he is the little sister of the friend who loaned him the cabin. What will happen with these two strong personalities in the same cabin for a weekend?

Review: I was hoping for a miracle with this book. I really, really wanted to like it. But, unfortunately, the story line, plot, and characters all fell flat for me. Everything felt one dimensional and didn't even come close to pulling me in. I, even, put the book down for about a week and came back and read it because I knew I just had to finish it. But it was painful! Even one of the more exciting parts of the plot (the fact that Aidan is in hiding because there is someone after him) crumbled when Aidan’s commanding officer just says something like … oh, don’t worry. We figured out it was a kid. You can come back now.

I don’t know that I would recommend this book to anyone else to read.  

In my opinion, this book gets:
2 out of 5 stars.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The Stranger (Just One Night series #1)

This book was read as an Advance Reading Copy (ARC) provided for free by the publisher and

BookThe Stranger (Just One Night series #1)

AuthorKyra Davis

Rating: X (explicit sexual content)

Bookshelves: 2012, ARC, California, cheating, erotica, fiction, Las Vegas, romance

Begun: December 18, 2012
Finished: December 18, 2012

Media Type: eBook (read on Kindle app on Nexus 7)

Setting: Las Vegas, Nevada and California

Characters: Kasie Fitzgerald

Synopsis: Kasie is about to enter into a boring, bland, and vanilla marriage with a man who hasn’t even asked her to marry him yet. But, he’s discussed the feasibility of finding the perfect diamond for the perfect girlfriend who will, undoubtedly, make him the perfect wife, too. But the problem is Kasie has been dragged off to Vegas but her adventurous friend who wants her to go out and flirt with men and drink with a stranger. Until she starts playing the tables and a gorgeous hunk of a man invites her back up to his room. How can she say “no?” When she gets back to California, what will happen when she finds out her mystery man is a new client at her firm?

Review: I’m not a huge fan of “cheating” stories, even when the cheating is justified away. Kasie is so wishy washy. I completely forgot that her name was something as different as Kasie. Kasie’s should be exciting and vibrant but this Kasie was just as vanilla as her horrible sounding boyfriend. And she can never make up her mind. Sometimes I found myself flipping back in the pages because I felt like I missed something. Details that seemed like they would be important were glossed over and forgotten.

Davis’s writing was good but not extraordinary. And the novella just seemed to … end. There was really no good conclusion and instead of it seeming like a cliff hanger, it was more like a door slamming in your face.

I’m not sure if I would read a second book in this series if I didn’t get it for free or from the library.

In my opinion, this book gets:
Just ... ok.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Roman and Juliet (The Aerie Doms series #4)

Rating: X (explicit sex)

Bookshelves: 2012,Colorado, Denver, erotica, fiction, romance, USA

Begun: December 17, 2012
Finished: December 17, 2012

Media Type: eBook on Kindle app (read on Nexus 7) - FREE ON AMAZON AS OF DATE THIS BLOG WAS PUBLISHED

Setting: Denver, Colorado

Characters: Juliet Howard, Roman Grainger, Xavier Greer,

SynopsisJuliet is a submissive whom most dominants won't touch because she looks very frail and fragile with white/silver blonde hair and huge doe eyes. Juliet likes it rough though and is saddened by the few men who given her a second look at The Aerie (a BDSM club in Denver, Colorado). Until, that is, the sexiest cowboy she's ever seen steps out of her fantasies and walks into the club. Can Roman and Juliet make a connection?

Review: This was a good novella. Took about an hour to read and was very enjoyable since it was the fourth book in a series. You don’t feel like you are missing anything not having read other books in this series. The characters were dynamic and well rounded. Thacher is a quality writer. My only complain is that of the “book,” only about ½ of the book was the novella and the other ½ were the first chapters of her other three books in the Aerie Doms series. Granted, this wasn't so bad since they were all pretty good reads and enticed me to look up the other books. I just felt tricked that I would be reading more than what I had in front of me.

In my opinion, this book gets:
4 out of 5 stars (good book that I'd pick up again and recommend to friends)

Saturday, December 15, 2012

A Wizard For Christmas (A Protector Series novella)

This book was read as an Advance Reading Copy (ARC) provided for free by the publisher.


Rating: PG (slight violence - a creature attacks a woman and there a couple dead bodies but they aren't described in detail - just that they are dead)

Bookshelves: 2012, Chicago, fantasy, fiction, paranormal romance, romance, USA, wizard

Begun: December 6, 2012
Finished: December 7, 2012

Media Type: ebook (read on Kindle)

Setting: present day Chicago, Illinois (USA)

Characters: Holly, Hadrian

Synopsis: Holly was an orphan who grew up to be a loner. When her friends ask her about her Christmas plans, Holly lies and says that she’s going to her family’s home where all sorts of fun things happen (like a cousin who keeps the memory of her dead “uncle” Burl Ives alive by singing Christmas songs to the family). But a strange … stranger keeps popping up in her neighborhood. Hadrian is a Protector and knows that Holly is not what she thinks she is. She’s really a wizard, or, as they call themselves, a Protector. And Hadrian knows that to defeat the big baddie on the lose killing innocent mortal Chicagoans Holly will have to learn the truth and start to trust someone other than herself.

Review: I was not a huge fan of this novella. In the beginning of the novel, I found Holly to be a dynamic character and that her interactions with the mysterious Hadrian were intriguing. But, the author fell flat creating a completely three dimensional world with Hadrian and Holly at the center.  Very quickly, Holly became the kind of heroine that I despise: insular; never listening to anyone else (especially those with more experience that can help her); and one that runs away from problems (both real life and perceived problems). She spends more than 3/4th of the books hating Hadrian and running from him and then in the last few pages (when the ultimate confrontation occurs), she totally flips her stance on the matter. Magic played a very, very small role in the novella and was discussed only as a cursory item (which is strange since the title is A Wizard for Christmas).

In my opinion, this book gets:

3 out of 5 stars (fair - could be better/could be worse)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Babycakes (Cupcake Club series #3)

This book was read as an Advance Reading Copy (ARC) provided for free by the publisher.

Rating: M (Mature audience) sex scenes but not overly explicit

Bookshelves: 2012, romance, fiction, Georgia, ARC,

Begun: September 12, 2012
Finished: September 15, 2012

Media Type: eCopy (read on iPhone 4)

Setting: Sugarberry Island, Georgia (USA)

Characters:  Kit (Katherine Mary Margaret) Bellamy, Franco, Lilly Westlake, Morgan Westlake

Review: Kit Bellamy had it all: her family around her, her longstanding family business was a huge success and pie, delicious peanut pie. What more could a girl want? How about family who doesn’t rip the business from her hands and turn it over to a conglomerate? How about a job to return to every day? How about sisterly love?

When Kit’s world dissolves around her, she decides to take a friend up on an offer to begin a new business, Cupcakes sold over the internet. Kit jumps at the chance to start fresh but the ghosts of the trail that brought down her family’s business keep her gun-shy.

The Westlakes are known for their ruthless tactics in the courtroom and their business acumen. But Morgan Westlake disassociated himself from his family’s practice from the beginning. He’s recently moved to Sugarberry Island with his niece following the accidental death of his brother and sister-in-law. Can time near her maternal grandmother start to heal some of Lilly’s wounds? Can cupcakes help? What will happen with Kit meets up with a Westlake?

Personal Review: Babycakes was a good read. I don’t know that I would have put down other books to ensure I read this one but it was enjoyable.

The characters could have used more development. They weren’t exactly flat but they also weren't well rounded. I didn’t even think Morgan had any guts until the last 10 pages of the book (or so). It was like the author was trying to pass him off as an alpha male but he’s just a beta (at best).

Recommend to:  romance genre fans.

In my opinion, this book gets:

3 out of 5 stars (good but not great/not terrible)

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Bah, Humbug!

As of September 15, 2012, this book is free at (to be downloaded onto the free Kindle Cloud Reader which you can downloaded (for free) onto your laptop, desktop, or Kindle). Click here forthe link. 

Book: Bah, Humbug! 

Rating: G (So tame your 8 year old daughter could read it) - Couple kisses once! - Not your typical romance

Bookshelves: 2012, romance, Christmas, Colorado, fiction

Begun: September 13, 2012
Finished: September 15, 2012

Media Type: Kindle Edition (read on Kindle Cloud)

Setting: Colorado

Characters:  Alexis “Lexi” Alexander, Trista Alexander, Steven Alexander, Kyle Miller, Kenneth Miller, Keefe Miller, Alyssa Miller

Review: Up-coming, Martha Stewart-wanna-be Lexi Alexander has moved from her old life and ex-husband to … Christmas Lane. She’s trilled to create a holiday hubbub for her son and daughter but, on the first day at her new house, she finds a stranger pulling the head off the snow man that she and her family just made. What kind of Scrooge would destroy a child’s snowman?

Kyle Miller is stuck. Current author in vogue of children’s adventure novels, Kyle is struggling to make his main man, character Jared Strong … do … anything … What has possessed this Christmas miser to pull the head off a neighbor’s snowman?

Personal Review: I thought the novella was cute. It took a while to get into the characters of Lexi and Kyle (since this was a novella that’s not a good thing). But, once I got to the middle and enjoyed Christmas Eve with the family, I had to say I was in tears. Just as quickly, I found myself saying “this plot is moving too fast. There is no build up to this. This would not happen in real life.” Understandably since this is a novella things need to move fast but I think that this was a little lacking at the end. The climax and resolution happen in the last page and a half. I would have rather a little more development in plot. Characters were well styled and ambitious. They did not fall flat; rather the plot could have used a little more buoyancy at the end.

Recommend to:  romance readers, fans of free stuff, kindle reader

In my opinion, this book gets:

3 out of 5 stars (fair - could be better/could be worse)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Virgin River (Virgin River series #1)

Author: Robyn Carr

Rating: M for mature (no explicit sexual scenes - well within the realm of romance literature)

Bookshelves: 2012, fiction, California, Virgin River Series, Robyn Carr, romance, alpha male, widow/widower, USA, Marines

Begun: August 31, 2012
Finished: September 4, 2012

Media Type: Book (library copy)

Setting: Virgin River, California (USA)

Characters: Melinda “Mel” Monroe, Jack Sheridan, John “Preacher” Middleton, Doc, Ricky, Cheryl Creighton

Review:  Virgin River is the first book in a long (we’re talking 20 books as of September 2012) series. As a reader of this series, you can tell you’re going to get to know the ENTIRE town … and that’s not a bad thing.

Melinda “Mel” Monroe is fleeing Los Angeles, months after the death of her husband, a former ER surgeon who was shot and killed in a robbery at a convenience store that he just happened to walk into. Mel is emotionally battered and devastated but after talking to Mrs. McCrea of Virgin River, California, she’s hoping that she can detox from all the adrenaline she has been mainlining as a physician’s assistant working in maternity in the same hospital as her husband.

Mel needs this change of locations and jobs but her older sister, Joey, thinks that the same town of a little over 600 is crazy. When Mel pulls into Virgin River and sees her “accommodations” for the next year, she baulks and decided that maybe living with Joey in Colorado for a while is a good idea.

The Virgin River in Zion National Park
Mel had been lured to Virgin River with the promise of a quaint cabin as lodging and a Doctor who desperately needed (and wanted her help). Problem is … the cabin is falling apart, the Doc doesn’t want any city girl following her around and Mel’s Cole Haan boots are already starting to scuff. Is there any way this fancy highlight having, Prada wearing, BMW driving girl could stay in Virgin River where the deer outnumber the population?

Mel doesn’t think so, at least until she stops into the only bar and grille in Virgin River and finds a bright spot, fantastic food served up by … well, one of the hottest men Mel has seen in years. Rugged and just a bit … older, former Marine Jack Sheridan came to Virgin River to start over and settle down to a life of peace and quiet. Then, this hot little number with bouncy blonde hair with a behind in a pair of jeans that should be illegal walks into his bar … oh boy. Jack doesn’t know who she is but he really wants her to stick around.

On her way out of town, Mel is suddenly needed. Someone has abandoned a baby on the front porch of Doc’s clinic. No way is Mel going to let a newborn baby stay with that crotchety old man. She’s just stay in Virgin River until Child Protective Services can be contacted … just till then …

Personal Review: This was a fantastic start to the Virgin River Series. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing the vivid portrait that Robyn Carr drew of all her characters (and not just the “main” ones). You get a real sense that you know everyone with the depth and detail that she uses in her writing. I found myself looking at the summaries on the backs of the coming novels to see who else I get to meet and wondering about the other back stories that I’m getting woven in. (I really can’t wait to find out more about Ricky and how his life turns out.)

Overall, a fantastic read. I would recommend it to all romance readers that they give the Virgin River series a try!

Recommended by:  VictoriaMichaels

Recommend to:  Jennifer Crusie fans, Nora Roberts fans, romance genre fans

In my opinion, this book gets

4 out of 5 stars (almost perfect)

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Second Sight Dating by Marianne Stephens

As of August 30, 2012, this book is currently free on (to be downloaded onto the free Kindle Cloud Reader which you can downloaded (for free) onto your laptop, desktop, or Kindle). Click here for the link. 

Rating: M for Mature Audiences (typical romance but "scenes" are not explicit)

Bookshelves: 2012, fiction, romance, psychic, USA, police, dating

Begun: August 29, 2012
Finished: August 30, 2012

Media Type: Kindle Book (on Kindle Cloud on laptop)

Setting: Never stated (assumed to be Wichita, Kansas as it is referenced twice)

Characters: Serena Xavier, Anthony Xavier, Gino Conti, Dan Reese/Carrington

Plot: Serena runs a psychic dating agency. She matches up men (whom she gets number readings from) with potential women (with whom she sees letters for). Dan Reese Carrington is a police officer who has been roped into posing as a potential client for Serena’s agency after the mayor’s daughter is solicited after a date.

The police now want to get to the bottom of it and Serena is their primary suspect. They think she is a kind of psychic madam.

Serena’s legit but the feels she’s having for her new client are less than professional. How can a man this handsome be dateless? How can a guy with this much chemistry blow off all his dates? How can Serena protect herself and her business from someone she knows she is falling for?

Personal Review: Serena seems to me to be a “weak” female character. I would have liked to see a little bit more backbone from her and a lot more character development from the author.

In both main characters’ cases, you get an inkling of their histories: Dan has an ex-wife who he kind of love but they divorced and Serena has an ex-boyfriend, named Alan, that is often referred to but only give one page in the entire book. Stephens could have garnered more sympathy for Serena and the position she lands in by the end of the novel by playing up both of the “failed” relationships. 

I could easily have put this book down and walked away from it (never to pick it up again). I would suggest the author go back and flush out the characters a little more, add some depth, and she might just have a decent novel on her hands.

In my opinion, this book gets 3 out of 5 stars.