Monthly Archives: September, 2012

Courting Trouble – Jenny Schwartz – 3 Stars

 

Esme is an independent woman who is trying hard to help others by leading thesuffragette movement.  Unfortunately she equates love with dependence and isn’t quite willing to become a partner with the man she truly loves.  I felt that she was a wonderful person but that initially she had such a narrow view of relationships that it got a little frustrating.  So happy that Jed was willing to deal with this level of independence and turn it on its head.

 

Jed is such a wonderful man for his time and even now would be a very enlightened partner.  He’s torn between wanting to keep her safe and wanting to let her do what makes her happy.  He’s a great inventor and I loved watch him struggle with his need for Esme and her need to be independent.  It was a fun story to see unfold and the bit of intrigue was enough to keep the story moving.

 

I’m going to have to head back out and pick up the first book so I can see how the two of them met.

 

Go grab this for a quick read and enjoyable main pair.  Thanks to NetGalley.com and Carina Press for the chance to read this in exchange for my honest review.

 

Courting Trouble – Jenny Schwartz – 3 Stars

I’ve moved!!!

I bit the bullet and moved the blog over to WordPress while it is still young and relatively easy to move. Unfortunately it has broken the http://www.bookaholicanon.com address for now so please use the longer WP address to link to me. 😦

My hope is to have the URL back to normal in the next day or so and then never ever ever trying to do this again!!!

Enjoy and more reviews to post over the weekend with a guest poster on Wednesday, October 3rd.

Shades of Temptation – Virna DePaul – 4 Stars

Shades of Temptation (SIG, #2)

While this is book 2 in a series I did not have any issues reading this as a stand-alone.  I am definitely going back and grabbing book 1 and will get my greedy little hands on more of this series as it comes out.

Carrie is a cop..  She doesn’t let her feminine side out to play other than tooccasionally scratch an itch but that hasn’t happened in 6 years.  She’s deeply lonely but isn’t willing to let down her guard enough to let someone else in no matter how much she just craves affection.  I really felt for her working in a traditionally man’s field (at the level she was at) and feeling like she had to put these extreme walls up to keep people from seeing the human inside.  She’s done relationships but invariably the men she was with tried to prove how much man they were by becoming controlling and in one case raping her.  I loved her strength but when she finally gave in to her cravings for Jase, I then really loved her cracking and showing the woman underneath to a man who would cherish it.

Jase….  sigh…  Jase..  man oh man what a sexy, caring man hiding behind a playboy exterior you happened to be.  He’s craved Carrie like no other woman but due to his own issues never pursued her.  Sure he wants to scratch an itch and maybe get this craving purged but when she finally lets him get close and they give in to the attraction…  he’s a goner.  She’s such a strong woman and pushes him to prove himself but he craves this.  He’s got major issues to work thru on his own but I loved how he pushed her to let go but at the same time let her lead.  He gave up his control to give her the freedom to finally let him in and in doing so gained a wonderful partner.  

I have to say the murders and such were interesting even though the reader knows who the killers are we still are drawn to how the main pair figures it out and works thru the case.  I loved the SIG team and cannot wait for more stories to come out.  I also appreciated that while you get that there is an HEA with the main pair they don’t immediately resolve everything.  

Thanks to NetGalley.com and Harlequin for giving me the chance to find this new series in exchange for my honest review. 

Shades of Temptation – Virna DePaul – 4 stars

The Accidental Bride – Christina Skye – 4 stars

The Accidental Bride

Even though the romance was very quick the main pair are a lot of fun to watch find their way to each other.  It packs some nice sexual tension and make out scenes but nothing graphic.

Jilly is a great chef.  She’s doing what she loves and has some great friends…  so what else does she really need?  She’s alone but that works for her as she has some issues with her childhood to work thru and doesn’t think that a relationship is ever going to be in the cards for her.  She ends up having a wake up call in the form of a cardiac issue that forces her to step out of the restaurant and relax.  Her friends decide to pull one over on her and send her to a knitting retreat in Wyoming.  She isn’t happy at first but once she starts to spend time there she finds more than she ever thought she could have and more than she ever expected in…

Walker…  ok I loved Walker.  He’s so sigh-worthy and definitely a hero.  He was wounded in action along with his military dog Winslow and is a bit of a recluse until he stumbles upon Jilly.  Winslow immediately falls in love with Jilly and starts to help her heal as well.  Walker starts showing up more and more in town to spend time around Jilly which of course gets tongues wagging in this small town.  Everyone wants him to be happy and if Jilly has gotten this recluse out then Jilly he must have.

Throw in a well-meaning grandson of the resort owner…  a “fake” wedding…  family drama… and a secret…  well then you have this quirky little book.  Granted the main pair fall in love amazingly fast but you’ll love how they get there.

Thanks to NetGalley.com and Harlequin for letting me read this in exchange for my honest review. 

The Accidental Bride – Christina Skye – 4 stars

An Outlaw’s Christmas – Linda Lael Miller – 3 Stars

An Outlaw's Christmas (McKettricks, #16)

This is my first Linda Lael Miller read and I don’t think it will be my last.  While this one was a very quick read and HEA it was still a good enough read that I will take a look at the back-list in the series.

Sawyer has just arrived in Blue River, TX in the middle of a snowstorm.  He is in town to take over as marshal for his cousin  but ends up with more than he had ever imagined. As he is riding to the hotel he is shot by an unknown assailant and ends up falling off his horse in front of the schoolhouse.  Lucky for him he ends up being found by Piper who brings him in and binds his wound as best she can.  

Piper is a strong woman but in those times it just isn’t proper (no matter how innocent it actually is) for a single woman to share a house with a non-relative male.  She ends up having her reputation tarnished but Sawyer proposes a marriage in order to keep the gossips at bay.  Yeah sure they have only known each other for a few days, most of which he was sleeping and recovering from the gunshot, but hey we are in the world of romance books so all must work out in the end.

I think the reason I liked the romance even in such a short span was that Sawyer didn’t push her to truly do anything Piper didn’t want to.  I  also liked what you saw of Piper and her willingness to do what’s right even at the cost of her reputation in a time where a single woman with no family desperately needed to hold on to it otherwise she could end up jobless and resorting to prostitution to survive.  She’s strong and mouthy which will suit Sawyer and his extended family perfectly in the long run.

This was an enjoyable quick read and I thank NetGalley.com/Harlequin Books for letting me read it in exchange for my honest review. 


An Outlaw’s Christmas – Linda Lael Miller – 3 Stars

Hunk for the Holidays – Katie Lane – 2.5 stars

Hunk for the Holidays

Please suspend belief for the amount of time it takes you to read this and if you do so it isn’t a bad read.  

Cassie is a work-a-holic who is stuck working as an accountant for her family’s construction business when she would rather be getting her hands dirty.  She uses escorts at various social functions rather than letting a man in to her life.  All this changes due to mistaken identity..  and man is he some sexy man meat in a tux…  She lets her hair down at the party and ends up having some amazing sex with the man she thinks is an escort.  In the course of a few short days she ends up with a lot more than she ever bargained for and finally gets out of her shell with both her family and her work.

Josh is just stopping by for a meeting when he is mistaken for Cassie’s escort for the evening.  He is instantly drawn to her and goes along with the charade never giving her his last name.  You see he is the competitor that keeps stealing contracts out from under her family’s construction business.  He’s a good guy and immediately wants more from this wildcat hidden under ice…  I liked what he was willing to do to prove he wanted to be with her and even though it was quick I enjoyed where it went.

I liked the view of her family but to be honest I wish that the author had used a bit more time and made this book a little longer to make the ending believable. 

Special thanks to NetGalley.com and Grand Central Publishing for letting me read this in exchange for my honest review. 

Meet the Kowalskis – Shannon Stacey – Contest

In honor of my 100th post I have decided to talk about the wonderful series of books by Shannon Stacey that immerse you in the Kowalski family.  I happened upon this series due to a wonderful Goodreads reviewer who nicely put some quotes in her reviews.  I will have to say this quote from Exclusively Yours is what got me started thinking I needed to read them:

Joe reached into the back pocket of his jeans and pulled out a folded sheet of spiral notebook paper. “Here’s a list of things you’ll need. I jotted it down in the parking lot.”

Keri unfolded the paper and read the list twice, trying to get a sense of what she was in for.

BRING: Bug spray; jeans; T-shirts; several sweatshirts, at least one with a hood; one flannel shirt (mandatory); pajamas (optional); underwear (also optional); bathing suit (preferably skimpy); more bug spray; sneakers; waterproof boots; good socks; sunscreen; two rolls of quarters.

DO NOT BRING: cell phone; Blackberry; laptop; camera, either still or video; alarm clock; voice recorder; any other kind of electronic anything.

She had no clue what it meant, other than Joe wanting her half-naked and unable to text for help.



And this quote from Undeniably Yours made me run out and get the ones that were out there at the time:

It was a little overwhelming, even though they were a very likable bunch of people. Like agreeing to learn the doggy paddle and being shoved off the high-dive board. And to keep things interesting, somebody told Bobby, Kevin’s youngest nephew, the baby could hear stuff and he was determined to make his new cousin his BFF in utero. It was a bit disconcerting having a kid randomly tell bad jokes to her stomach. Like now.

“Why did the weasel cross the road?” he yelled at her belly button. “To prove it wasn’t a chicken!”

Then he laughed so hard he almost fell over. He was a cute kid, she thought, and then it hit her—a little over seven years from now, she might have one just like him. Some faceless, nameless boy with too much energy and the knees almost worn out of his jeans, telling jokes to crack himself up. Maybe, if they were lucky, he’d look like his daddy, dimples and all.



I fell in love with the family and the series after reading the first one and haven’t turned back.  I love the quirks and emotions that Shannon brings out of the characters and hope you fall in love as well.

The series consists of 4 books that are out right now and 2 more due this year that I am counting the days on.

Series in order and all were rated 4 stars:

Exclusively Yours – Joe and Keri’s story – What happens when you have to go back to your old hometown and try to get a story out of the man who’s heart you broke?  You’ll love this one for the great intro to the family but also how much the main pair truly are to one another.  I loved this second chances story.

Undeniably Yours – Kevin and Beth’s story – What happens when a one-night stand results in a pregnancy noone expected due to a condom failure?  You’ll love how much Kevin steps up to the plate and how much both of them go thru to get to the ending that is incredibly *sigh* worthy of.  He’s such a great man and she’s one heck of a lucky woman.

Yours to Keep – Sean and Emma’s story –  What happens when telling someone you are engaged to a man who doesn’t know he’s yours comes back to haunt you?  In the case of Emma she gets incredibly lucky to land Sean.  Of course this is the book where our beloved “magic penis” makes an appearance and if you read the series for nothing else that one quote will be worth it.  I loved watching a crush become more than either of them ever expected.

All He Ever Needed – Mitch and Paige’s story – What happens when you meet the one you were meant to be with when you aren’t ready to?  I loved watching this story play out as a man who loves life as a nomad meets a woman who finally has decided to plant roots somewhere.  These two were fun to watch as neither was looking for love but were willing to scratch each others itch for a short no-strings affair.  They are both wonderful people and this sets up the next story in the series…  which I cannot wait for!!!  


Coming Soon:

All He Ever Desired – Ryan and Lauren’s story – I’m looking forward to learning more about their history and watching another Kowalski find true love.

All He Ever Dreamed – Josh and Katie’s story – After seeing Josh and Katie in All He Ever Needed, I am really looking forward to this one.  There is some serious denial on his part and serious attraction on her part that when it comes out will be incredibly powerful to read.



Now on to the fun stuff…  I’m giving one lucky person their choice of either a $15 Amazon Gift Card or the Kindle editions of the first 4 books in this wonderful series.  Please use the Rafflecopter form below to enter and good luck!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Angel – Tiffany Reisz – 5 stars

So I went in to this thinking…  “Can she really get me bawling a second time?”…

Answer –
                              HELL YES!!

The Angel takes up not too long after The Siren.  Nora is now back with her Søren and is playing sub to his Master again.

Nora –  In this book she is where she thinks she belongs but her heart still aches for her Wesley.  I will tell you she is still as manipulative as ever but I got the sense she is fundamentally broken at this point.  Søren doesn’t seem to make her 100% happy but she also doesn’t feel that she should speak with Wesley again for his sake.  She’s still kick ass but I sensed a deep sadness from her in that maybe what she thinks is her heart and soul might not be all that after all.  Do I think she and Søren are a match…  Yes…  but at the same time I can’t seem to believe that maybe it isn’t the best of matches for her.  She’s not completely happy but still manages to have some great moments with both Søren and Griffin in this book.  Her moments with Michael were wonderful as in her heart she knows who she is getting him ready for. 


Griffin – He’s a wonderfully wicked man in this book and I enjoyed every minute of his unrepentant ways.  He’s a wonderful person in both heart and action so watching his play with Nora was fun.  He falls deeply for our beautiful boy and to watch him try to stay away but need so badly was painfully beautiful.  I loved seeing why he hated Søren but am glad that the reason played out the way it did.  He is a great protector and the HEA he receives is so deserved that it made me tear up.  They are so made for one another and to know that Søren knew this before anyone else did was amazing.

Michael – Your heart will break then cheer for him in this book.  He’s such a broken soul but under the care of Søren, Nora and Griffin he shines.  He is sent with Nora to train while staying away from press following Søren’s inclusion on a short list to become Bishop.  Nora works with him to not only become the sub he desperately wants to be but also on how to let others in while he shows his true self.  Tiffany made me cry for him as to be treated the way he was by both his mom and dad in this is just horrible but I know this happens all the time in the real world.  I loved seeing him open his heart and mind to others knowing that it was not judged by them but accepted.

Suzanne – The reporter that causes Nora to have to go hide was an interesting side story.  Søren is drawn to her in a way but as always he belongs to Nora and doesn’t let Suzanne completely in.  She’s at a point in her life where nothing is quite there for her in her professional or personal life but at the end of this her interactions with our priest bring her to a point where I feel she is ready to not only make strides in her professional life but..  is also going to open her heart up to her ex who I think will be her HEA ultimately.


Kingsley – I liked seeing more of him in this one and love him.  I also loved seeing that there is a bit of tension between he and Nora which stems from jealousy and maybe will lead to some nasty times in the next book.  He loves Søren and will do anything to protect him even at the sacrifice of his own needs.  I think this will be interesting to watch play out as Juliette might have something to say about his devotion to our Master.  His history with Nora is heartbreaking and I gasped when more of their story came out.


Søren – I will admit I was scared to death of him in the last book but after this one I see where he gets his personality from.  Man oh man is that one fucked up family.  I love him after this book and to be honest my heart broke for him with the way this one ends.  I understand his need for inflicting pain much better after this one and truly see how much he loves Nora.  I wasn’t sure if I wanted her to be with him after The Siren but at the end of this one I just want him to be happy.  I think he loves her more than life itself and understands her more than she truly knows.  He loves with all his being and that is breathtaking to watch.


All in all I loved this book and though in some respects it wasn’t as draining mentally as The Siren it was just as draining emotionally.  I am seriously looking forward to The Prince and wondering what path down the rabbit hole Tiffany is going to take us on in it.

Go grab this one as again it will make you cry, laugh and think about what it truly means to love someone else.

Special thanks to NetGalley.com and Harlequin for giving me the chance to read this in exchange for my honest review.

The Angel – Tiffany Reisz – 5 stars

Finally Home – Helen Scott Taylor – 4 stars

This is a nice sweet read where you have a true sense that the main pair really are in it for the long haul at the end.

Jack is in trouble…  He’s due to be married in the next couple of days and realizes he doesn’t want to go thru with it.  Put on the spot by his new ex he says that he is in love with the first female name he can come up with…  Melanie.  She’s his manager for his hotel and once he says her name he starts to wonder… hmmmm what if…  He starts to spend more and more time around her and her son which was a lot of fun to see.

Melanie is trying to rebuild her life after a huge tragedy in her past.  She blames herself for what happened and wonders if she could have prevented it.  She’s a wonderful mom but keeps to herself as her secret could cause more pain and destruction for her son.  She’s lonely though and hurting but under Jack’s care comes out of her shell more and more until the past comes back to haunt her.  I was a little frustrated with her but I can understand why she felt the way she did.  I loved how she finally let go and even with the tension you could see what she really wanted even if she fought it.

Nice sweet read and happy that NetGalley.com and Carina Press allowed me to read this in exchange for my honest review.

Fault Lines – Rebecca Rogers Maher – 4 Stars

I’m not going to give away the main part of the issues with the heroine but I will say the treatment the author gives the subject was refreshing as it felt incredibly real.  It hit close to home for me although I didn’t have everything happen to me that she did I personally did feel most of what she did and still occasionally deal with the same issues of trust and nightmares.
Sarah has issues with control and uses sex as a way to keep men at an emotional distance.  She doesn’t do relationships or any real connections other than to her best friend.  I liked her and as you get to know her secrets you will feel for her and hope she gets some true happiness.  She’s driven and really just wants to be honest but is convinced that what happened to her was her fault…  trust me it isn’t but there are times when I felt that way as well.  I’m proud of the journey she took in this book and even happier the author didn’t completely whitewash the subject.
Joe…what an incredible man he is.  He’s a recovering alcoholic and brilliant photographer that sees beyond the masks we all present to the world.  He has his own demons that are faced in this book and seeing him make steps in his own way was heartwarming.  He’s a great great sexy man and even though we don’t see much of the two of them together what we do see is beautiful.  I’m so happy that he was such a patient person with her and I beleive what they build will be an incredible life.
Thanks to NetGalley.com and Carina Press for bringing this to my attention and allowing me to read this in exchange for my honest review.
One note…  Please do not go in to this without understanding it deals with some difficult topics but..  I cannot say this enough…  These topics deserve to be talked about with honesty no matter how uncomfortable they can make some people. 


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