Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Much Ado About Jack by Christy English

This book is third in the "Shakespeare in Love" series.  Characters from the first two make an appearance in this novel.   The heroine of this novel is Angelique Beauchamp, the widowed Countess of Deveraux.  Angelique has vowed never to re-marry after her disastrous marriage and has no issue with taking lovers as she sees fit.  That is until she meets Captain James Montgomery.

Another well written (and hot) book by Christy English. 

I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley.

Ok, on to my rant about my local library.  First, I have not read a "real" book since June, 2012 when I received my Nook.  While I love my local library and am thrilled with the great selection, I find it annoying when they purchase only one book in a series. One of the first books I read (and thoroughly enjoyed) from the library (once I figured out how the e-books part worked) was "How to Tame a Willful Wife".  When I received "Much Ado About Jack" from NetGalley, something seemed familiar, so I did some research on Goodreads.  What did I find out?  There is a second book!  SO PURCHASE THE SECOND AND THIRD BOOK ALREADY!  End of rant.

Must Love Dukes (Tricks of the Ton, #1) by Elizabeth Michels

There was never a dull moment in this book from the opening chapter to the epilogue.  I found Lillian and Devon to be delightful.  There was a cast of great supporting characters (his mother is awesome!), some nasty villains and a twist in some minor characters that I didn't expect.  This novel belongs on my e-reader shelf!

The opening of the novel is a flash back to why Lillian went to London the previous year.  She can't stop her oldest brother from selling family heirlooms to cover his gambling debts.  But, when he sells their mother's pearls and father's pocket watch, she sneaks to London to retrieve them.  She buys back the pearls but misses being able to purchase the watch.  Lillian follows the man that just bought the pocket watch to a tavern.  He introduces himself as Devon Grey and she uses the alias of Lily.  This leads them to getting drunk.  The next morning, Lillian steals the pocket watch and has to remember where her clothes are.  This leads to a flashback sex scene and to a hilarious encounter with Devon's butler. 

A year later, Lillian's father has died and her older two brothers have decided that she has outlived her usefulness and the middle brother has made a list of men for prospective husbands.  Lillian is forced to go to London.  We discover that Devon is the Duke of Thornwood and known in the Ton as the Mad Duke (as was his father before him).  The reason Devon's father was called "the Mad Duke" is somewhat addressed.  The scene where Lillian encounter's Devon's butler had me laughing.

The remainder of the novel is the interesting courtship between Lillian and Devon.  Devon is still mad that Lillian left without saying a word and now that he has found her, he is blackmailing her.  Unfortunately, Devon's targets are the men that are on the "short list" of men that Lillian's brother wants her to marry. Each man on the list is more vile than the other and Devon's revenge on them is spot on.  In the end, I loved the surprise way (involving two minor characters) that Devon gets Lillian to marry him. 

I could have found a more fitting title for the book.  "Must Love Dukes" just does not fit as well as  Loving the Mad Duke or The Mad Duke.  That being said, that was my only complaint about the book.  The next book in the "Tricks of the Ton" series is "Desperately Seeking Suzanna" and I can't wait to read it!

I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

The Rogue's Proposal by Jennifer Haymore

Lord Lukas Hawkins is looking for his mother and Emma Curtis is looking for the man that swindled her father.  Since they are looking for the same man, she proposes they search together.  As the road trip progresses, the become friends then take the final step and become lovers.

For some reason, I just could not get interested in this book.  I can only give it two stars because I am one of those people that will not put my e-reader down until the book I am reading is done. 

I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley/

The Countess Conspiracy by Courtney Milan

Again, another great book by Courtney Milan.  I had received an ARC from NetGalley, but I purchased the book so I would have the series.  This is a series that I will go back and read again and again.

Sebastian Malheur has been friends with Violet Waterfield, the Countess of Cambury since they were young.  Simon has a very rare reputation among the Ton.  He is an educated rake.  Simon's lectures are controversial due to their theories on inherited traits.  Unfortunately, Simon is tired of giving the lectures because the theories are not his, but Violets.

The development of the characters is wonderful.  I love how Ms. Milan shows the development of her male characters as well. It isn't long before you forget Sebastian has a reputation as a rake and see him as a man in love attempting to win the affection of the woman he loves.

This was another book by Courtney Milan that I didn't put down until I was done.  Then, I was mad because I have read all of the books in The Brothers Sinister Series.  I can't wait until The Heiress Effect is released.

Five out of five stars!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

The Duchess War by Courtney Milan

This is the first in The Brothers Sinister Series. 

Miss Minerva Lane is doing her best to blend in with her surroundings and has done a good job until Robert Blaisdell, the Ninth Duke of Clermont arrives in town.  Robert is attempting to correct the wrongs his horrible human being of a father did. 

I loved how Robert didn't start out as the romantic hero.  As the novel progresses, we see the development of both characters.  We know Minnie is hiding a big secret.  Toward the end, there is some betrayal of Minnie by Robert.

The characters in this book are strongly written and I was on the edge of my seat as the novel unfolded.  It was pure awesome.  Again, Ms. Milan has created characters that are intelligent and stand up for their beliefs. 

The Governess Affair - Courtney Milan

Hugo Marshall is the "Fixer" for the Duke of Clermont.  The Duke of Clermont is a total ass.   The only way Hugo Marshall will get paid is if he brings the Duke of Clermont through the year in one piece.

Miss Serena Barton was a governess until the Duke of Clermont ruined her reputation.  Now, Clermont has sent his Fixer to Fix Miss Barton.

The relationship that develops between Hugo and Serena is very intense and complex.  The ending of the book is unexpected.

I was sad when the novella ended because I had wanted it to be longer, be more.

This is the prequel to "The Duchess War".  While "The Duchess War" stands on it's own, read this first because it explains a lot about the plot and underlying twists in "The Duchess War."

Five out of five stars.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

His To Possess by Opal Carew (1-6)

His to Possess by Opal Carew is a six part serial novel.  I received parts 1, 2, and 3 as an ARC from NetGalley.   Then, I received the full book from NetGalley.  I was thrilled.  I can't imagine having to wait for the other half of the book!

So, to start, the novel opens with Jessica Long looking for a job at a career fair.  She had gone to Philadelphia because she was out of work and her hot, biker, tattooed, rocker boyfriend dumped her to go on the road with his band.  While getting a cup of coffee, Jessica thinks she sees Storm, her ex boyfriend.  It turns out not to be Storm, but an older rich guy named Dane Ranier.  It is raining, so Dane offers her a ride to her hotel in his limo.  Later, Dane stalks her to the restaurant she is eating dinner in and bam, we get the first sex scene.  Dane gets one of his employees to recruit Jessica at the job fair.  Jessica gets the job and is stunned to find out that her new boss is the guy she had the hot one night stand with. 

The plot gets kind of weird when Storm returns and he is Dane's brother Rafe.  And Jessica's new BFF and roomie Melanie has a thing for Rafe who used to be her boss.  I would love to see a story about Rafe and Melanie.

I gave this book five out of five stars because it was just so darn hot.  I thought my e-reader was going to melt several times.  There are two m/m/f sex scenes toward the end of the book.  The D/s was very mild.  Jessica always referred to Dane as Sir or Mr. Ranier and once he threatened to punish her. 

The one thing that bugged me is the lack of safe sex.  Just mention digging for the foil packet or opening Dane's desk drawer to find a year supply of Magnum Condoms (ribbed for her pleasure).

I received this as an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


His to Possess by Opal Carew. #3 The Perfect Storm

Part three leads off with Jessica's mom telling her that her ex boyfriend Storm is back in town and was looking for her.   Her dad gave Storm her home phone number.  This chapter has more smoking hot sex scenes with light domination thrown in.  Dane tells Jessica she can only wear stocking with garter belts and her panties must go over the garter belt.  The chapter ends with Storm finding Jessica.

Again, the one thing that keeps bothering me is the lack of safe sex.  Just mention digging for the foil packet or opening Dane's desk drawer to find a year supply of Magnum Condoms (ribbed for her pleasure).

Five out of five stars.

I received this chapter as an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

His to Possess by Opal Carew #2 The Morning After

This is the second part of the serial novel "His to Possess" by Opal Carew.

Part two opens with Jessica discovering the job she has been offered is to Dane Ranier, the man she had a one night stand with and left her hotel room before he woke up.  Jessica needs this job.  She can't go back to her small town because there isn't any jobs there.  Her musician boyfriend Storm dumped her to go on the road with his band.  There is something about the guy she had the one night stand (and now her new boss) of her boyfriend Storm.

In this chapter we find out more about Melanie, the woman who Dane Ranier used to recruit Jessica for his company.  Melanie needs a roommate and offers the spot to Jessica.  Melanie has a huge crush on her former boss, Rafe Ranier, Dane's younger brother.

Jessica has to figure out what she wants from Dane.  She decides she just wants the hot sex with a splash of submission.  This isn't full D/s, but Dane has a dominant side.

The sex scenes are so smoking hot that my poor e-reader almost melted!  The not thing that bothered me was the lack of safe sex.

Again five out of five stars.

I received this chapter as an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

His To Possess by Opal Carew #1 The Seduction

His to Possess is a five part serial novel by Opal Carew.  The first two are being released December 24 and the remainder once a week through January 21st.  (This is a warning for those that like to complain.)

Part one opens up with Jessica Long attempting to get a job by attending a career fair in Philadelphia.    She is sitting at the window of a coffee shop when she sees a guy that resembles her ex boyfriend Storm.  Jessica runs after him and it isn't Storm, but almost an older version of her.   Drew Ranier gives her lift to her hotel to save her from getting a cab in the rain.

That is where I am leaving the description of the book because I don't want to give too much away.  This is the second book by Opal Carew that I have read.  I thought my e-reader was going to melt the first section was so hot.

I give the first chapter five out of five.

I received this chapter as an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Led Astray By A Rake - Sara Bennett

Wow!  I did not put this book down until I was done.  There is one HUGE plot twist that I thought I had figured out, but I was totally wrong!

Miss Olivia Monteith has just completed Miss Debenham's Finishing School.  She is part of the "Husband Hunters Club".  Each girl in the Club believes that the only husband worth having is one she has hunted herself.  Olivia announces in the last meeting that she is going to marry Lord Dominic (Wicked Nic) Lacey.  Olivia has known Wicked Nic all of her life.  He had told her that he would marry her years ago.  After leading Wicked Nic on a merry chase, Olivia finally gets the man she fell in love with years ago, not the brooding man he has turned into.  During the chase, Olivia's mother wants her to marry one of the local landed gentry, a Mr. Garsed.  That brings some suspense with Mr. Garsed's crazy brother. 

There are some fantastic supporting characters in this novel.  Nic's manservant, Abbot is in love with Olivia's maid Estelle.  Then there is the issue with Olivia's sister, Sarah. 

I found this book thoroughly enjoyable and am looking forward to reading the others in The Husband Hunter's Club series.

Five out of Five stars!

The Wylder Trilogy by Isabella Bradford

I just finished reading the last in the "Wylder" trilogy by Isabella Bradford.  The only way I can describe or review them is together.  This is one group of books that must be read in order.  (I had checked out "When the Duchess Said Yes" first and it felt like I was the only one not in on the plot.)

Book One - When You Wish Upon A Duke - four out of five stars
Lady Charlotte Wylder has just turned 18 and her mother announced that her deceased father (an Earl) had an arranged marriage set for her.  She is to marry James FitzCharles, Duke of Marchbourne.  March meets his bride to be and is just crazy about her.  He sends he dragon of an Aunt and the workers at the dressmaker's out of the room so he can "talk" to her.  However, once they are married, March feels that he has to treat his wife as a lady in the bedroom and Charlotte (having been raised in the country) won't have anything to do with it.  It takes him a while, but March is finally able to understand that it is OK to enjoy his wife.

Book Two - When The Duchess Said Yes - four out of five stars
The second Wylder sister also has an arranged marriage.  Lady Elizabeth (or Lizzy as she prefers to be called) has an arranged marriage with one of March's cousin, the Duke of Hawkesworth.  Hawk's main goal is to get married to Lizzy (because he will loose all of his money if he doesn't), get her pregnant then return to Naples.  Hawk sees a beautiful woman at the opera and is attempting to find out who she is even before he meets his intended bride.  He is stunned to find out that his mystery woman isn't a courtesan but his intended.  Hawk and Lizzy fall in love.

Book Three - When The Duke Found Love - three out of five stars (due to feeling rushed)
The last Wylder sister, Diana, didn't have an arranged marriage set by her father because he died before he could arrange it.  Diana's family want her to marry boring Lord Crump and stay away from the last Duke cousin, the Duke of Sheffield.  Sheffield has caused a scandal with a married lady in France and the King wants him to marry Lady Enid Lattimore.  However, Lady Enid is deeply in love with Dr. Joshua Pullings, her brother's former tutor and a minister.  Diana's family doesn't want her to associate with Sheffield, but she accidently meets him at the park.  Diana is supposed to be the "wild" one of the Wylder sisters.  I found her to be a spineless wimp.  She doesn't stand up for herself and settles for a loveless marriage by getting engaged to Lord Crump.  When Lord Crump is called away on business for the crown (nothing thrilling, just inspecting mines), Diana agrees to move up the wedding date.  After Sheffield helps Pullings and Lady Enid elope, he is busted by his older cousin as having arranged the elopement.  Sheffield finally convinces Diana to marry him and they elope. 

I felt that this book was thrown together and not as developed as the other two.  It was like the author was meeting a deadline.  The worst part was the rushed and not completed ending.  When March catches up with Sheffield and Diana at an inn (after they are married), there is a reference to a loud, amorous couple in the room next door.  It turns out that it is the widowed Lady Wylder and the eldest of the Duke cousins.

While I enjoyed reading the Wylder books, there were some annoying things.  All of the Dukes have the same great-whatever grandfather, a King of England (it is never said whom the King is) and one of his four mistresses that he gave the title of Duchess to.  All of the Dukes use a shortened form of their title:  Marchbourne is March, Hawkesworth is Hawk. 

Sunday, December 8, 2013

A Wicked Pursuit - Isabella Bradford

What a way to discover that the lady you thought you wanted to marry was shallow!  Charles Fitzroy, the fourth Earl of Hargrave or Harry to friends and family has been dancing attendance on the beautiful Honorable Miss Julia Wetherby throughout the Season in London.  Miss Julia decides to play coy and goes to her father's country home in Norfolk.  As soon as she leaves London, Lord Harry, who is the son of a Duke, decides she is the one that he wants to be his Countess and goes after her.  When he arrives, her father is having a hunt dinner and he can't get her attention.  Poor Harry, you failed to see the hints that Julia's brother threw at you.  Julia is very shallow and will not make you happy.  Harry is intent on getting her alone so he can propose to her.  Julia suggests they go for a ride the next day.  When they go to the stables, Harry is given her father's brute of a horse to ride.  Two grooms are having to lead him out.  Again, Harry, pay attention!  Don't be a fool and ask for a different horse.  Oops, you didn't!   And Miss Wetherby is playing the tease and riding out ahead of you.  Miss Wetherby proves herself an idiot by jumping out in front of Harry's mound causing the horse to bolt and throw Harry.  Miss Wetherby can't take responsibility for her actions and runs to get her sister Augusta or Gus.  Augusta is everything Her half-sister Julia isn't.  Smart, caring and attentive to the severely injured Harry.  She is at Harry's side during his recovery.  Harry slowly learns the lesson that beauty is only skin deep and it is the character of the soul that is important.

I enjoyed this book thoroughly.  Having the sister that was plainer get the attention and undying love of Harry was great.  I wanted to reach into the book and grab Julia several times.  Harry made the best choice in Gus.

Five out of Five stars

I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher.  Thank you!

Friday, November 29, 2013

The Governess Affair by Courtney Milan

Hugo Marshall has a problem.  His employer, the Duke of Clermont, has a situation he needs Hugo to fix and Hugo isn't known as the Wolf of Clermont for nothing.  Serena Barton is demanding the Duke of Clermont give her compensation for the situation he created.

I found this novella to be witty and engaging.  I loved how Serena stood up to Hugo and refused to back down.  They had to get married and the wedding night scene was so creative and hot I thought my iPad was going to melt!

I wasn't overly fond of the epilogue.  It was a tie in between this book and the next.

I am now reading The Duchess War and need to get the next one (the story of Hugo and Serena's son).

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

King Hall by Scarlet Dawn

I found it hard to read a fantasy book that has the opening sentence of "Sex education".   The novel opens with the heroine in sex ed class.  I had a hard time getting into this book because I found it difficult to understand all that was being thrown at you in the first chapter.

In this world, they elect four kings from each group every 22 years.   They are electing teenagers and the heroine's boyfriend is one of the elected kings.

At this point I am setting the book down.  I read to relax and I didn't find this book relaxing.

I am not bothering to rate it.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley.  Yea, ok, I was honest.

Lord St. Clair's Angel by Donna Lea Simpson

This book has a great plot:  a handsome rake falls in love with a plain spinster.  However, the book had too many issues for me to enjoy fully.

Lady Langlow needs a plain, on the shelf governess for her children.  Her brother-in-law has made it a habit of seducing the prior governesses.  She hires Miss Celestine Simons who is plain, on the shelf and suffering from arthritis.  Lord St.Clair Richmond is a rake and very full of himself.  He sets off to seduce poor Celestine.

As the story progresses, St. Claire's character changes from an utter ass to a hero I liked.

I give it four out of five stars.

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thanks!

Along Came Trouble by Erin Kern

I rarely read contemporary romance.  But, Erin Kern has me hooked with Along Came Trouble.  Brody McDermott is attempting to keep the restaurant he is running for his father operating.  He has been having problems with his chefs and the last one has produced nothing but bad reviews.  He hired photographer and former model Elisa Cardoso to take pictures for a magazine spread.

I enjoyed that Brody and Elisa didn't jump into bed by chapter two and there was a building of a friendship.  Part of the issue is Elisa has been asked by a friend to watch her son after school until his dad can pick him up.  The dad is Brody and Elisa is leery of getting into a relationship with a friends ex husband.

This is the third in a series.  While it stands alone, I can't wait to get the other two books to learn more about the other characters in this story.

Five out of five stars.

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thanks!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Improper Arrangements by Juliana Ross

Unfortunately, is book is written in first person.  I find it rather disturbing to read romance written in third person especially when there are sex scenes.  That said, I did give this book a try.  I read the first two chapters and just couldn't get into it.   I hen tried my next step; reading the ending to see if I like how it ends.  If I like the ending, I will read until I get into the book.  I just couldn't get into this book. The book felt way too modern.  It may not be a bad book, I just couldn't get past it being written in the first person.

I received this book as an Advanced Reader Copy from Net Galley.

'Twas the Night Before Mischief by Nina Rowan

I thoroughly enjoyed this book!  It is the story of Penelope Darlington, the daughter of a confectionary owner and the third son of an Earl, Darius Hall.  Penelope runs off with a fortune hunter and her father sends Darius after her.  It was too short of a book and I wish it had been longer.

I received this book as an Advanced Reader Copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Never Trust a Pirate by Anne Stuart

Maddy Russell is desperate.  Her father has died in disgrace and she is left without a dowry or suitor. She thinks one of her father's former employees, Captain Thomas Morgan has something to do with his death.  Unbeknownst to Maddy Thomas Morgan is just a passed alias and the current holder of the name is half Gypsy Luca.  Luca is trying to better himself.  He has a snobby fiancé who's father is the lawyer dealing with the sale of Russell Shipping.

This was a enjoyable read.  It is the second in a series and stood alone quite well.  I give it four stars.

I received this book as an Advanced Reader Copy from NetGalley.  Thank you.

The Pirate and The Puritan by Cheryl Howe

This Book was originally published in 2003.  It didn't need it be republished.  I didn't like this book from the first chapter.  Puritan Felicity Kendall goes to Barbados to help her dad in his shipping business.  The male lead said in the first chapter that he wanted to throttle Felicity.  Well, so did I.  I went back to my library and found a different book to read.  The only good thin about this book was they changed the cover.

Between Friends by Vristen Pierce

This was a short erotic novel.  The basic synopsis is that Stacy Washington was dumped by her long-time boyfriend.  She has been a good girl too long and this break up is her opportunity to shed that image.  Stacy goes to one of the hottest night clubs in town in search of action.  She meets Evan and Justin, both not her normal types. 

I have two main criteria for the erotic novels (or any novel) I read and this book didn’t meet either one. 
First,99% of the time, I don’t read books written in the first person.  I have actually returned a book that I found was written in the first person.  And, when it is an erotic novel, I find it unsettling to read a first person account of extremely hot action. 

Second, like all romance novels, they MUST have a HEA.  When I read the first paragraph and saw it was written in first person, I gave it the “test”.  I went to the last chapter to see if I liked the ending and could attempt to read the book.  The main character goes back to her ex-boyfriend! 

Sorry, this book isn’t for me.  I had to give it one star on GoodReads.  For my blog, I won't even rate it because I couldn't get past the first p
I received this book courtesy of Net Galley in an exchange for an honest review.  Thank you for the opportunity!

When The Rogue Returns by Sabrina Jeffries

When I read the synopsis of "When a Rogue Returns", I was hesitant to read the book.  How many romances start with the couple already married.  As in page ONE.  I think this is the first one that I have read and I have been reading romance for way too long.  So, I took a chance and I loves this book.

It starts with Isabella or Isa Cale having to play sick so her husband Victor isn't aware of the plot her sister and brother in law have to steal the Crown Jewels.  Is a is a jeweler and very good at making a step above paste jems.  The sister and brother in law tell Isa a lie and get her to go to Paris with their stolen jems.  Fast forward ten years and a Victor is in England and has found out he is a cousin of a Duke.

Sabrina Jeffries is one of my favorite authors and this one is a keeper.  I give it Four out of five stars.  The only reason I didn't give it five stars was because I was confused where the story opened and what year.  It may be due to the formatting of the ARC.

I receive this book as an Advanced Reader Copy from NetGalley on exchange for an honest review.  thank you

Friday, November 15, 2013

The Wicked Confessions of Lady Cecelia Stanton by Viveka Portman

This is a short erotic novel.  It was a nice, quick read.  Viveka Portman needs to write a longer novel. Though, not in first person.

I received this as an ARC from NetGalley.

The Misbehaving Marquess by Leigh LaValle

The story opens with Lady Catherine Raybourne, the Marchioness of Forster finding her husband in her drawing room.  It seems that Jamie, Lord Forster had left for parts unknown after been married to his childhood sweetheart for two weeks and has been gone for five years.  His cousin and heir has died and he announces to his wife that she will provide him with an heir.

This book was originally part of an anthology called "Three Weddings and a Murder".  It is a novella and since it is a novella, the author can't delve into much.

There are only vague references to an incident on a balcony where Catherine was kissed by a rogue trying to save a friend and Jamie's embarrassment in the Ton.  If Catherine was Jamie's childhood sweetheart wouldn't he trust her more than to just leave the country for five years without writing.

While this is a cute story, I wish it was longer so the author could give more character depth.  I felt like I was missing chapters from the book.  Apparently, Catherine is the sister of a character in a previous book.  I am wondering if I would find out more about why Jamie left if I read that book.

I give it 3.5 stars out of 5.

I received this book as an Advanced Reader Copy from NetGalley.  Thank you for the opportunity to read this book.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Secrets for Seducing a Royal Bodyguard by Vanessa Kelley

Secrets for Seducing a Royal Bodyguard opens with Aden St. George rescuing Lady Vivian Shaw.  Aden is a spy that had been sent by his superior to rescue Vivian.  Vivian's mom is friends with Aden's mom yet they have never met.  Aden is the product of his mother's affair with the Prince Regent.  It seems to be an open secret of the ton.  Lady Vivian has attracted the attention of a visiting Russian prince.  Her oldest brother wants her to marry the Prince to further his political career, while her mother and brother have a gambling problem and they rely on Vivian to get the money to save them.  Aden needs to figure out who wanted to kidnap Vivian and he also needs to keep her safe so he pretends to be courting her.  I wasn't fond of Vivian's family.  They seemed to be very dependent and letting an unmarried lady of the ton gamble to save help repay their gambling debts is preposterous.

I started reading this book, I could not put it down and stayed up reading until I was done.  I can not wait for the next two in the series.  The only thing that baffled me was the title.  Aden isn't a Royal Bodyguard.  He is a spy.  The book could have been titled "Secrets for Seducing a Spy".

I give it five out of five stars.

I received this book as an Advance Reader Copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The Marriage Wager - Jane Ashford

The Marriage Wager is the story of Emma Tarrent who is returning to England after seven years.  Colin Wareham, Baron St. Maur sees her on the ship and is intrigued.   Emma had left England in disgrace and disowned after she marries her first husband, a gambler.  Colin is returning after eight years fighting in the war.  They meet again after she was trying to win her brothers IOU's from Colin.

I liked that the characters weren't cookie cutter romance H & H.  Emma was married to a gambler that went through her generous marriage during their travels.  Colin is returning to do his duty.  The book was fast paced and thoroughly enjoyable.

I give it a 3.5.

I received this as an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Loving the Earl by Sharon Cullen

Nathan Ferguson, Earl Blythe is a bad-boy Earl that has had to replenish his family fortune after his father died mysteriously by opening a gaming hell.  Lady Claire Hartfield, Viscountess Chesterman is attempting to escape from the emotional and physical damage done by her deceased husband.  This story takes Nathan and Claire from England to France to Italy.  Nathan is doing his best to protect Claire from danger (as he promised her brother, his best friend) and himself.  Nathan is attempting to find the truth behind his fathers mysterious death and Claire wants to prove she isn't worthless in bed as her deceased husband told her.

This book was not your typical Regency.  I found it fast paced and engaging.  I loved the development of the characters and seeing how Claire can overcome her past marriage and take a chance on love with her bad-boy Earl.

I give it four stars.

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you for the opportunity.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Devil In My Arms by Samantha Kane

Devil In My Arms opens with Eleanor Enderby escaping her cruel husband to her sister Harriet's house.  I found the opening paragraph confusing and that I had missed some important information.  I attempted to read past the first two chapters, but couldn't.  This book lost my interest before it could gain it.

I looked on GoodReads and found this is the third in a series.  I have read books from the middle of a series and wasn't aware they were part of a series until I looked for more books by the author.  This book made me feel like I was missing something.

If you are going to read this book, read the others  prior!

I give this book one star.

I received this book from NetGalley as an Advanced Reader Copy.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Reforming the Rogue by Donna Lea Simpson

This novella is a Classic Regency.  It involves Cederic Barton, Earl of Cairngrove, his brother Dominic, Jessica Landry (Cederic's mistress) and Linnet Pelham, her sister.  Dominic has attempted to talk his brother out of marrying his mistress and it failed.  It is not socially expectable for a peer to marry his mistress.   He takes matters into his own hands and goes to Jessica's house to convince her not to marry his brother.  Dominic meets Linnet who has recently lost her job as a school mistress.

This is a true Regency and I normally don't read Regency.  I thought this book was entertaining and I liked how spunky Linnet is.   This book gives two HEA 's. It was a quick read at 88 pages on my Nook.   I give it  3.5 stars.

I received this book as an Advanced Reader Copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Hunting the Hero by Heather Boyd

This isn't the typical Regency.  The novel opens with the lonely widower Constantine, Earl of Grayling entering a bordello.  His wife died two years ago in childbirth.  Constantine meets the first woman in those two years that stirs his blood, Calista.  Calista is an alias for Meredith Clark, and as we read further, we discover that Meredith Clark is an alias too.   Meredith has suffered trauma in her past and is hiding from her family, but she is content in her life.  Constantine develops feelings for Calista and buys her evenings for an entire week.  He asks her to be his mistress and when she refuses, the governess for his three daughters.  Constantine's friend Arabella, Lady Farnsworth, has seen happier in the two years since his wife died and tracks down Meredith.  She convinces Meredith to be the governess for the three girls.  Toward the end, we discover Meredith's real name and what had happened to her.

This is the fourth book in a series.  Heather Boyd did a great job making the reader feel like they weren't reading part of a series.  I thoroughly enjoyed the book and now want to read the other three novels.

The only puzzling thing is how the title fits with the book.

I give this book five out of five stars.

I received this book as an Advanced Reader copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you for the opportunity to read this book!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Pirate Lady by Lynsay Sands

I wanted to read something light and with humor.   The Pirate Lady by Lynsay Sands fit the bill.  The plot was outlandish and quite fun.

Valoree Ainsley has been raised by her brother, Jeremy, on his privateer ship.  Jeremy was a privateer so he could get enough money to repair their family estate that their guardian had destroyed.  (It was odd that Valoree says they liked their guardian and the guardian had cared for them, but the guardian did everything in his power to take everything of value and strip the land because it was his right as their guardian.). When Jeremy was killed by a Spanish pirate, Valoree took over his mission.  Unfortunately, when he was killed, he had taken a small crew to meet with he King's agent to give him the King's share.  The other members didn't know who the agent was, so each time they captured a pirate ship, they put the King's portion aside.  Valoree, seen covered in her brothers blood was taken by one of the pirates in the ship they just captured as a ghost and was called Back From The Dead Red.  Fast-forward several years.   Now, Valoree has the money to repair her estate and is going to meet with her brother's lawyer.  Lord Daniel Thurborne is already in the lawyers office when Valoree gets there for her appointment.  (The scene prior when Valoree and her crew go to the dressmaker is hilarious!   It introduces us to  "Aunt" Meg that everyone assumes is a drunken former prostitute, but has a much bigger back story.)

At the lawyers office Valoree discovers she has something in common with the annoying Lord Daniel.   She must be married and pregnant or have had a baby by age twenty five.  AND, her husband must be of noble birth.   As Valoree tells the lawyer, that is in less than nine months!

The remainder of the book is the adventures and mishaps of the courtship of Valoree and Daniel.  It was a comedy of errors and had me laughing throughout the book.  I loved Valoree's loyal pirate crew.

This book rates 4.5

Monday, October 21, 2013

The Secret Life of Miss Anna Marsh by Ella Quinn

Wow! Lately, I have been disappointed by the second book in a series.  I received  "The Secret Life of Miss Anna Marsh " as an advance from NetGalley.  I started reading and did not put it down.  I fell in love with spirited Anna Marsh and the man she has loved since childhood, Sebastian, Lord Rutherford.  Sebastian and Anna's brother Harry are best friends that live on neighboring estates.  They are about ten years older than Anna.  Harry put Anna in charge of the local smuggling ring he ran when he left England on a spy mission and was reported killed in action.  Anna has to return home to deal with the smuggling ring (part of a sub-plot) and Sebastian escorts her home via the wedding of their mutual friends Phoebe and Marcus from Ella Quinn's first novel.

It takes Sebastian a while to convince Anna he loves her and wants to marry him after she overhears a  conversation between Sebastian and Marcus on the type of woman Sebastian wants to marry.  The chase was a delight.   Throw in the sub plot of Harry returning from the dead with amnesia and his travels back to his family.

This was an entertaining romance.  Very well written.

I received an ARC ( Advanced Reader Copy) of this book courtesy of NetGalley and Kensington Books in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you for the opportunity!

When Harry Met Molly by Kierian Kramer

The title is catchy, but somewhat inaccurate.  Lord Harry Traemore has known Lady Mary "Molly" Fairbanks since birth.  Harry is the second son of a Duke.  His older brother and Molly's older sister marry when Molly is 13.  Molly had a crush on Harry's brother and at a Christmas dinner prior to the marriage Molly recites a poem accusing Harry of kissing her sister (using other names, of course).  Chaos ensues.  The Duke sends Harry off to the army (where he ends up in disgrace over an officer's wife) and Molly is sent to the finishing school from hell.  Fast forward many years.  Poor Molly has been her aunt's companion and never had a season.  She is eloping to Gretna Green with her father's assistant when Harry and his mistress enter the inn where they are eating.  Harry is on the way to host a week long party at his hinting box for Prinny's Impossible Bachelors.  They are having a mistress contest where the Bachelor whose mistress wins doesn't have to get married and can not have match making mama's throw their daughters at them for a year.  The looser has to marry the woman their club chooses.  Molly's fiancée runs away with Harry's mistress and Harry needs a replacement.  He convinces Molly to be his pretend mistress.  If Molly wins, Harry will find her a husband.  In this book we meet the other "Impossible Bachelors".

This is the first book in a series of three.  I had read "Dukes to The Left, Princes to The Right" (book 2) and "Cloudy With a Chance of Marriage" (book 3) previously.  Of the three, "When Harry Met Molly" is my favorite.  Molly's adventures as a fake mistress are funny and heart warming.   I give it five out of five stars.

In my opinion, it was the best of the three books.  Each book can be read on its own (as I read the second one first because my library does a bad job linking series.). The third book was just blah and I couldn't finish it.   I have re read "Dukes" several times and still like it.  I may go back and give "Cloudy" another chance now.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Seduction of Lady Phoebe by Ella Quinn

At this time B&N has this book available for free.  I would have paid for this book.  I always like finding new authors and was delighted with Ella Quinn.

Lord Marcus was a wild 20 year old man that was being sent to Jamaica to supervise his family's plantation due to being quite wild.  At the last house party he attended, he met Lady Phoebe and instantly fell in love.  He made an ass out of himself by getting drunk and attempting to propose to her.  Marcus got a well deserved right hook to the nose and was knocked to the floor by Phoebe.  Fast forward eight years.  Phoebe has refused any of her suitors and hasn't forgiven poor Marcus.  The remainder of the story is how Marcus got Phoebe to forgive him as he is still madly in love with her and has totally reformed his character to be worthy of her.

I would give this book five stars except for the Phoebe's creepy stalker.  I felt the plot could have done without him.  I give this book four stars.

The Merry Widow by Koko Brown

Phillipa Jones is quite an unusual Victorian woman.  She actually liked sex with her husband and didn't have to "lie back and think of England".  She had helped her husband run their shipping company and has been running it in the three years since his death.  Reginald, Viscount Bellomont is pestering Phillipa to sell the shipping company.  (Should I mention that Reggie is known as the "Viscount of Equine"?)  Poor Phillipa (who did enjoy the marriage bed) is lonely so she has arranged via a Madam for a young man to visit her at her house.  (Can you see what is next?)  Reggie knocks on the horny Widow Jones's door before her hired lover does.  Her staff assumes that Reggie is the young stud and sends him to Phillipa's room.  Reggie does what any red blooded male would do. 

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and wish it was longer.  Since this is Koko Brown's first Victorian Erotic Romance, I hope she revises it and adds a lot more length to it.  Some things are too good to be this short!


The first romances I picked up at a too young age were Harlequin.   The standard, white covered Harlequin.  At that time, if they kissed at the end of the book, you were lucky.  I abandoned Harlequins in favor of NOVELS.  I started reading Johanna Lindsay, LaVyrle Spencer and Rebecca Brandewyne. 

Now, I am finding that I am reading the Harlequins again. They are a nice, quick read.  Something to read between NOVELS or if I have been on hold for ten weeks for the book I wanted from the library.