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Against the Night by Kat Martin

I must say that I am really loving Kat Martin “Against” miniseries. It just gets better with each book and I can wait until I read each installment. The Raines family and friends just keep on giving to the reader. Former Ranger, Johnnie Riggs is working as a private investigator when he spotted Amy Brewer, aka Angel Fontaine, dancing in a stripper joint as he was in the process of apprehending a bond runner. Amy has come to Los Angeles from Grand Rapids, MI looking for her sister who has disappeared and no one has seen her for weeks. She has gotten a job in the stripper joint where her sister, Rachael , last worked hoping to gather any information on her disappearance.

The chemistry between Amy and Johnnie was scorching from the first time that he saw her and it was reciprocated by our heroine. Amy and Johnnie worked very well to solve the disappearance of her sister as they followed the clues until they found her. I also liked the semi-romance between the sister and the Detective such that it made a profane difference in Rachael’s recovery.

This was an excellently written book although I am not a fan of rape in romances. I guess you can say it was instrumental to the storyline but I wish it could have been written differently.

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How to Seduce a Scoundrel by Vicky Dreiling

 

Vicky Dreiling is a relative new author for me but she is definitely moving up my list of must-read writers. This is a story that went through several phases as we watched both the hero and heroine evolve throughout the book. Julianne Gatewick has known the Earl of Hawkfield (Hawk) all of her life since Hawk is one of her brother’s best friends. Julianne has been in love with Hawk forever and always dreamed that he would fall in love with her and propose marriage but Hawk treats her more like a younger sister.

Due to some unfortunate circumstances, Julianne’s brother has requested that Hawk act as her guardian during the Season. Hawk has taken the duty very seriously and is hindering Julianne from enjoying her suitors. Since Hawk isn’t coming up to scratch, Julianne has decided to give her suitors a chance to win her heart. Along the way, Hawk is starting to see her as a grown woman and his feelings along with jealousy of her suitors have grown. Hawk also has a secret that has kept him from fully offering his heart to a woman. Julianne and Hawk learn to accept each other and work through their issues.

I really enjoyed this book but I did have some problems with just how naïve Julianne was for her age and the amount of time it took for Hawk to get over his problems. I am giving this story a Good+ rating.

 

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Blame it on Bath by Caroline Linden

Caroline Linden usually writes very interesting stories and this one does not disappoint the reader. Blame It On Bath is the second in a trilogy about whether or not three brothers are the legitimate heirs to a Dukedom. The setting of this book is in parallel with the first story. Gerard de Lacey is the youngest son and is determined to find and stop the blackmailer who is casting aspersions on the brothers’ legitimacy.

Katherine Howe is a young widow who is being forced into marriage with her late husband’s heir by her mother and the heir because he wants her money and her mother is just a self-absorbed person. Katherine thwarts their attempts by proposing a marriage to Gerard who had helped her several years before–although he doesn’t immediately remembers her. Katherine has always had a tender spot in her heart for Gerard since this time. She had heard about the illegitimacy rumors and felt it was now or never if she wanted to have him for her husband.

Katherine and Gerard marries and the marriage works for the both of them. They have passion, friendship, and Katherine has a protector who learns to value and love her. This is an wonderful story but it didn’t give us any more knowledge of the blackmailer than the first story. This is more of a stand-alone romance that will keep you entertained until the last page.

 
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Posted by on June 3, 2012 in Book Reviews, Romances

 

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She Tempts the Duke by Lorraine Heath

I am a great admirer of Ms. Heath’s books. She develops characters with depth and a full range of emotions. Lady Mary Wynn-Jones and Sebastian Easton were childhood friends. Sebastian’s father had died in an accident and he was to inherit the Duke of Keswick title with its extensive properties. After the accident, Mary overheard Sebastian’s uncle give orders to kill his three nephews so that he could steal the title. Mary helped the boys run away before anything bad could happen to them.

Twelve years later, the uncle was on the verge of having the boys declared dead and claiming the title. The boys returned–all being injured physically and/or mentally–before the uncle could claim the title. Needless to say, there was not a joyous reunion between uncle and nephews. Sebastian has been through a war–losing an eye among other physical ailments. I, personally, would have preferred a hero who was a little less maimed but it doesn’t detract too much from the story.

At this time, the uncle is still determined to get the title at all costs and the nephews are determined that he pay for his crimes and misdeeds. Lady Mary was always drawn to Sebastian and his injuries do nothing to hinder those tender feelings. There are a few obstacles that stand in the way before Mary and Sebastian can find happiness–including Mary’s fiance. But Mary is still protecting her old friends which leads her into tarnishing her reputation. Sebastian feels the need to come to her rescue since he was the cause of her indiscretions. Although our hero and heroine go down a crooked road before they realize that they have always cared for the other, true love eventually wins out as well as our villain getting his comeuppance.

This book was an easy read which flowed smoothly and I just enjoyed going along for the ride. Hopefully, Ms. Heath will give the other brother stories and loves of their own to help them heal from their arduous ordeals. It was very satisfying to see Sebastian transform from a tormented man to someone who has attained all of his dreams. I give this book a Very Good recommendation.

 
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Posted by on January 20, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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Escape to Paradise by Pamela Yaye

I have not read any of Ms. Yaye’s previous books but if her heroines are anything like this one, I won’t be reading another one again. This book for me was a train wreck from the very beginning. I had so many problems with this book that it is too hard to list them all. Claudia Jefferies is a successful event planner who just divorced her older husband of several years. On the day the divorce became finalized, her ex-husband was arrested for fraud. The public and the police treated Claudia as if she was an accomplice in the fraud. Her answer to this was to get upset, change her hairstyle, hire a less than mediocre attorney, and then run away. Instead of getting some competent advice, she wanted to be “independent” and solve these problems by herself. Now is not the time to do it yourself when you can be thrown into jail.

First of all, wigs would have been a better answer to the hair change because she could change her looks at a moment’s notice. She could have contacted any lawyer referral service to find an attorney who has won a fraud case. And she ran away after all of her assets were frozen–meaning how does she intend to pay for anything. Being broke, the author even had her hesitating to accept a lucrative job offer. Ms. Yaye made a point of telling us that Claudia is a college graduate and has run her own business. Claudia should have been able to find a decent attorney if she ran her own business especially since she had to be using contracts as an event planner.

Claudia runs away to Cabo San Lucas and met Santiago Medina at the airport. She had already turned away every enquiring man but Santiago was determined to spend time with her. With her surly attitude, I couldn’t see the attraction. The dynamics and other relationships in the story were equally irksome such as, out of nowhere, Santiago’s father jumps down Claudia’s throat without listening to her side of the story. The story was so disjointed that I could not wait until it was over.

To make matters worse, this book actually ended before we found out what happened with Claudia or her ex-husband’s SEC case. Claudia’s actions are unbelievable under the circumstances and I could never believe that Santiago is that enamored with her. This book was just too problematic and I cannot recommend this book.

 
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Posted by on January 20, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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Pride & Passion by Charlotte Featherstone

This book is a sequel to Seduction & Scandal and I must admit that I did not like the heroine, Lucy Ashton, when she was introduced in that book. Unfortunately, this book did not make me like her any better in her own story. I found her to have a spoiled, stubborn personality with not much consideration for anyone else other than herself. The book, at least, furthered our knowledge of the issues started in the first book but I was barely interested in the plot the first time and I definitely started losing the rest of my interest while reading this one.

The Duke of Sussex has always had a tendre for Lucy since he first spotted her years ago. He requests her hand in marriage from her father and is given permission to marry her. Lucy feels that the Duke is a stick in the mud and goes out of her way to discourage him. But the Duke has waited too long and has done too much to win the love of his life so he has no intention of being dissuaded in his pursuit of her. Lucy still has feelings for previous lover who she thought was dead. She has embraced the occult in order to communicate with him once again. It doesn’t take much intelligence from the reader to determine that there is something havey-cavey about her previous love’s death. Lucy manages to get herself into much danger with the Duke constantly having to protect her and bail her out of trouble. Personally, I could see no reason why the Duke is so enamored of Lucy. She has shown me nothing in either of these stories why someone would do anything to win her love.

Ms. Featherstone has tried to explain some of the reasons why protecting the relics and understanding Lucy is plausible but I can’t accept them. I can only recommend this book to someone who is interested in the series and want to learn more about the Brethren. I, for one, will stop reading about them with this book.

 
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Posted by on January 16, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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Miss Hillary Schools a Scoundrel by Samantha Grace

Miss Hillary Schools a Scoundrel is an interesting story about a young lady who has experienced betrayal in love and is not looking for a marriage in the near future. Unfortunately for her, her mother does not feel the same way and wants her daughter married as soon as humanly possible. Lana Hillary is running away from a persistent suitor when she meets Lord Andrew Forest who helps her elude being compromised. Lord Andrew is known for being a rake and is in no hurry to end his bachelorhood. Much to his surprise, he finds himself attracted to a woman who will go to any lengths to avoid marriage. He decides to pursue her but not necessarily for a permanent arrangement. He just likes to interact and spend time with her or so he thinks.

Unfortunately for Lord Andrew, Miss Hillary’s brother does not like him and does everything in his power to keep the two of them from even being in the same proximity. This doesn’t slow our hero down. He arranges to spend time with her at his parents’ country party since Lana will be there to support her best friend, Andrew’s sister-in-law, during her first stages of pregnancy. Lana senses that Andrew could be trouble and she tries to stay away from him. But Andrew enlists the aid of any one he can to get Lana alone so that that he can seduce her. As Drew spends more time with Lana, his feelings escalate and he can see that Lana might be the right women for him as he enjoys her company more and more. Lana has already had one encounter with a rakish fiance and is in no hurry to hook up with another one. Drew is determined to woo Lana and get her to accept his offer of marriage.

Ms. Grace entices the reader in watching how Drew lands his prize. The path to happiness isn’t smooth and there are others who wish to take advantage of our heroine along with a mother who is determined to see her daughter married at all costs. I enjoyed the scenes between Lana and Andrew as well as the well written secondary characters. I would like to have read a little more on how her mother evolved to her current state. There were also some other loose story ends that will probably be cleared up in future sequels but I wish that they were not so prevalent in this story. I give this story a Good recommendation.

 
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Posted by on January 16, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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