Friday, April 29, 2016

Book Review - A Nun Walks into A Bar by Tracey Jane Jackson


ABOUT THE BOOK
After growing up in an abbey, orphan Sadie Ross becomes Sister Abigail Eunice. Her life and career are on track until a chance meeting with a handsome stranger in a place no nun should ever go.
Ryder Carsen’s sister is missing, and he doesn’t have time for distractions. But when a pretty nun walks into his bar, he can’t ignore his attraction to her, even though she’s not the “sister” he’s looking for. He’s relieved when she walks out of his life for what he believes is forever.


Sadie’s life takes a surprising detour when she finds her path crossed with Ryder’s once again. When they are brought back together, Ryder knows he’s found the only woman he’ll ever love, but time is running out for his sister.
Will Ryder save his sister from the men who took her?

When a source far too close to home threatens Sadie, will she trust Ryder enough to let him save her too? 


REVIEW
Picking up this book for review had me a little worried, since you can go so horribly off the rails with anything even remotely nun related.  I think I was on the last page of the ebook before I would let my guard down.  

The characters were likeable and human and at no point was their a sucker punch moment where a seemingly good and gracious religiously motivated person either turned on all their ideals OR turned out to be a secretly scheming villain out to rape an pillage the whole world.  A++, Jackson.  You win this round, but what about the story?

Being as Sadie is a nun as our story unfolds, that makes the scenes decidedly less steamy than in the typical novels we review, but I am compelled to still give this an 18+ due to the plot themes involving human trafficking.  

Jackson manages to deal with the lack of (euphemistically) passion scenes well, and the story did not suffer from their absence.  I would much rather the characters stay true to their expressed ideals than do something grossly out of character.  Maybe my sensibilities are getting a little more tender in my old age.

For fans who like their main men burly yet sensitive and willing to wait, like Charlie Hunman in Sons of Anarchy only independently wealthy and with a much stronger vision of peoples innate human dignity, you will find a lot ot like about the romantic love interest.  Like Charlie Hunman in Sons of Anarchy, there is so much that is only okay here because he is super hot, wealthy, and somewhat vulnerable.  If you or your child or even close neighbor were to date anyone with the possession issues this guy has, GTFO. 

Also, there is no way CPS or the FBI work the way they are described in the book. 

If you're willing to set aside the relationship issues and the blatant disregard for governmental procedures, what you're left with is a well plotted and enjoyable read.



OVERALL RATING - 4.5 STARS!
MATURITY RATING - 18+ (Light on the banging, heavy on the human trafficking)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

New York Times Bestselling Author, Tracey Jane Jackson, was born and raised in New Zealand, and that's where her love of horses was formed. Her grandfather taught her to ride at four years old, and she couldn't get enough.

Her love and passion for Abraham Lincoln and the entire Civil War era might have come from her American father, however, he lays no claim to influencing her. Tracey's mother used to tell her she was simply born in the wrong place in the wrong time.

Tracey hasn't always wanted to write. It took her a long time to get started, but now she doesn't seem to be able to stop, the joy of escaping to the 1860s is too much fun.

She's been happily married and gooey in love with her husband for more than twenty years. They live in the Pacific Northwest with their two sons.


CONTACT THE AUTHOR
Connect with Tracy on Facebook and Twitter.  Details are at Tracey's website, http://www.traceyjanejackson.com/.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Book Review - Doing it Over by Catherine Bybee

ABOUT THE BOOK


One small town. Three close friends. True love to last a lifetime.

Voted Most Likely to Succeed, Melanie Bartlett ended up anything but. The down-on-her-luck single mom wants a complete do-over—is that too much to ask? With her family long gone from River Bend, strong, independent Mel is as surprised as anyone to end up in the quaint small town she once called home. But with her friends, Jo and Zoe, by her side, and a comfortable room at Miss Gina’s quirky bed-and-breakfast, she just might have turned the corner on a new life.

Wyatt Gibson never liked the big city. River Bend suits the ruggedly handsome builder just fine. Wyatt knows he’s home, even if that means being charmed by the appearance of Melanie and her spunky, adorable daughter. Is Wyatt’s calm devotion—even amid a coming storm—enough to convince Mel she may have found a home to call her own, a family that never leaves, and a true love to last a lifetime?



REVIEW

This is the first book in this series by Catherine Bybee and it doesn't disappoint.  This is a wonderful small town romance. Mel and Wyatt are great characters that are surrounded by a cast of charming supporting characters as well.  The love story has a bit of mystery mixed in and some snark and humor mixed in as well.

Anyone looking for a nice spring time read will enjoy this book.


OVERALL RATING - 5 STARS!
MATURITY RATING - 18+ a little steamy


Monday, April 18, 2016

Doing It Over Blog Tour




DOING IT OVER
Most Likely To Series, Book One
Montlake Romance, Contemporary
April 19, 2016, First Edition
Paperback & Kindle

One small town. Three close friends. True love to last a lifetime.

Voted Most Likely to Succeed, Melanie Bartlett ended up anything but. The down-on-her-luck single mom wants a complete do-over—is that too much to ask? With her family long gone from River Bend, strong, independent Mel is as surprised as anyone to end up in the quaint small town she once called home. But with her friends, Jo and Zoe, by her side, and a comfortable room at Miss Gina’s quirky bed-and-breakfast, she just might have turned the corner on a new life.

Wyatt Gibson never liked the big city. River Bend suits the ruggedly handsome builder just fine. Wyatt knows he’s home, even if that means being charmed by the appearance of Melanie and her spunky, adorable daughter. Is Wyatt’s calm devotion—even amid a coming storm—enough to convince Mel she may have found a home to call her own, a family that never leaves, and a true love to last a lifetime?



Praise for Doing It Over
“The romance between fiercely independent Melanie and charming Wyatt heats up even as outsiders threaten to derail their newfound happiness. This novel will hook readers with its warm, inviting characters and the promise for similar future installments.” –Publishers Weekly
 “This brand-new trilogy, Most Likely To, based on yearbook superlatives, kicks off with a novel that will encourage you to root for the incredibly likable Melanie. Her friends are hilarious and readers will swoon over Wyatt, who is charming and strong. Even Melanie’s daughter, Hope, is a hoot! This romance is jam-packed with animated characters, and Bybee displays her creative writing talent wonderfully. –RT Book Reviews, 4 Stars


BUY LINKS:





About the Author

New York Times & USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bybee was raised in Washington State, but after graduating high school, she moved to Southern California in hopes of becoming a movie star. After growing bored with waiting tables, she returned to school and became a registered nurse, spending most of her career in urban emergency rooms. She now writes full-time and has penned the Weekday Brides Series and the Not Quite Series. Bybee lives with her two teenage sons in Southern California.  

CONTACT LINKS:
www.catherinebybe.com
catherinebybee@yahoo.com
catherinebybee.blogspot.com
facebook.com/AuthorCatherineBybee
twitter.com/catherinebybee
pinterest.com/catherinebybee
instagram.com/catherinebybee

Friday, April 15, 2016

Book Review - Fatal Affair (Fatal Series #1) by Marie Force

ABOUT THE BOOK
Washington, D.C., Metro Police Detective Sergeant Sam Holland needs a big win to salvage her career--and her confidence--after a disastrous investigation. The perfect opportunity arises when Senator John O'Connor is found brutally murdered in his bed, and Sam is assigned to the case. Matters get complicated when Sam has to team up with Nick Cappuano, O'Connor's friend and chief of staff...and the man Sam had a memorable one-night stand with years earlier. Their sexual chemistry still sizzles, and Sam has to fight to stay focused on the case. Sleeping with a material witness is another mistake she can't afford--especially when the bodies keep piling up. - Amazon.com


REVIEW
Jenn gave me a copy of this book to read and review, and if you know my sister, getting her to give up her personal copy of a book is no small thing.  She was confident, though, that I would find something worth writing about.  And what do you know?

The characters are well developed.  Sam and Nick are people.  I won't go so far as to say they are real people, because, come on.  This is fiction.  The Senator is obviously John F. Kennedy on a very, very bad day.  Nick is tall, dark, handsome, smart, articulate, and earnest.  Sam is tough, sassy, foul mouthed, tall, big-boobed, and broken.  Even knowing that the characters are about the farthest thing from real as you can get, I couldn't help but be drawn into their characters, their chemistry, and the solid whodunit procedural at the heart of the story.

The story is fast paced and enjoyable and does everything a good novel should do, namely, keep you so engaged in the story itself that you don't notice the sleight of hands being pulled until the story is well over.  The love scenes were very well written and live up to the 18+ rating we grant here.  Importantly, the steamy interludes were effectively and seamlessly woven into the overall plot.  In moments of reflection, yes, there are SEVERAL moments in the story that stray into eye rolling territory and some PC problematics, but Ms. Force gets a lot of good will just by being able to spin an entertaining story.

A heavier hand in editing may have benefited the overall book as some parts are overcrowded with plot points that have to be resolved but don't necessarily do anything for the narrative itself.

Recommended for:  The fabulously sasstastic tall curvy girls who like to see themselves as the main characters for once instead of those teeny little waif girls we could eat with our morning breakfast of Skyr and the tears of those who kneel before us (ooooo...and strawberries).  Those of us who lust after tall Harvard educated men who are still humble from their upbringing but also love the gym.  Mystery lovers who don't mind their main characters throwing around the L word like candy from a parade float.

Not recommended for:  Cops.  Politicians.   Anyone with any knowledge of psychology.  Blondes.


OVERALL RATING - 5 STARS!
MATURITY RATING - 18+ a little steamy

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Marie Force is the New York Times bestselling author of contemporary romance, including the Gansett Island Series, which has sold more than 2.2 million books, and the Fatal Series from Harlequin Books, which has sold more than 1 million books. In addition, she is the author of the Green Mountain Series from Berkley Publishing as well as the new erotic romance Quantum Series, written under the slightly modified name of M.S. Force.

Her goals in life are simple--to finish raising two happy, healthy, productive young adults, to keep writing books for as long as she possibly can and to never be on a flight that makes the news.  - Amazon.com


CONTACT THE AUTHOR
Join Marie's mailing list for news about new books and upcoming appearances in your area. Follow her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/MarieForceAuthor, Twitter @marieforce and on Instagram at https://instagram.com/marieforceauthor/. Join one of Marie's many reader groups at https://marieforce.com/connect. Contact Marie at marie@marieforce.com.
-Amazon.com


Monday, April 4, 2016

Book Review - Seaside Embrace (Love in Bloom / Seaside) by Melissa Foster

ABOUT THE BOOK
"After working hard all day creating his beautiful metal sculptures, sinfully sexy Hunter Lacroux likes to unwind with a hot, sexy babe–or two. But after spending a handful of naughty nights with seductive and beautiful Jana Garner, the woman who challenges everything he does and says, Hunter wants more.

As a dancer, boxer, actress, and waitress, Jana is tough, organized, and as dedicated as she is committed. She has to be to maintain her crazy schedule. But when it comes to men, Jana’s had a string of bad relationships, and there’s only thing she’ll commit to–not committing.
White-hot passion ignites every time Jana and Hunter are together, but the closer Hunter gets, the faster Jana runs. When Hunter lays on the charm, Jana throws out a challenge she’s sure he can’t meet, and Hunter steps up to the plate, forcing her to face her hurtful past or let go of him forever."

REVIEW

Jenn is off having a well deserved vacation, so the task of reviewing Melissa Foster's newest book in the Love in Bloom series falls to yours truly.

Seaside Embrace brings into focus Jana, a 25-year-old hot mess of a dance instructor, and Hunter, a tall dark unicorn of a man who has the heart of an artist and craftsman and owns his own business making custom iron work with his brother.  Melissa Foster does too good of a job making Hunter thoroughly unlikable in the beginning stages of the book.  When he eventually has his transformation into the man who will do anything for the right girl, it is such a 180 that I know I am firmly in a romantic fantasy.  The intent is to make a mirror image of Jana and create the "will they or won't they" dynamic we expect in a romance, but the intense dislike I have for the character (and his pet nickname for Jana and his "challenge" to her) pulled me out of the story.  The only bodily contact I can imagine anyone wanting with this guy is to punch him in the face, and you can avoid that entirely by just hitting him with a chair.  I just kept waiting for Jana to do that, but nooo... Melissa Foster has other plans.

The love scenes are steamy for sure, but the story is at it's best when focusing on the heroine's struggle with commitment.  Anyone who has been hurt and questioned whether or not to keep a romantic interest at arm's length is going to see a piece of themselves in Jana as she tries to make the decision to love and open herself up to life and opportunity in a host of other ways.

Seaside Embrace is part of a larger book series.  Fans of the series will be happy to see their favorites come back as supporting characters, like an endlessly supportive girl gang with husbands and babies in tow.  For a newbie, the scenery did get overcrowded. 

Lobster rolls all around!

OVERALL RATING - 3.5 STARS!
MATURITY RATING - 18+ graphically depicted love scenes and Taylor Swift karaoke may make this inappropriate to read on your community center elliptical (but who doesn't love scandalizing those septuagenarians)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Melissa Foster is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author. She writes contemporary romance, new adult, contemporary women’s fiction, suspense, and historical fiction with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page.
 

CONTACT THE AUTHOR
You can contact Melissa via her website at http://www.melissafoster.com/contact/