Friday, January 30, 2009

Possessed by the Highlander by Terri Bisbin

ROR Winter Challenge #12.
273 pages
Rating: 4.5 stars

Marian Robertson rescued a child and destroyed her reputation. Now, to keep her family safe, she must marry the stern, dark-eyed warrior negotiating a truce between their clans- and risk her heart.
Manipulated into marrying the exiled "Robertson Harlot," Duncan, the peacemaker for the MacLerie clan, finds his new wife's courage and spirit make it impossible to resist her. But will he put his honor at stake to free her from her past- and claim her love forever?

Review: Bisbin is a new author to me, so I was a little unsure as to what to expect from this book. It started off a little slow, but mustering through I found this story to be very enjoyable. Duncan longs for the family stability and happiness that he has witnessed within the marriages of his closest friends and clansman. Marian craves the love and company that she has been denied since that fateful night five years ago.
Duncan and Marian are hand-fasted for one year and a day, at the end of which they can part ways. Duncan wants more than anything for Marian to lean on him and reveal her secrets. Her inability to share these secrets prevents Duncan from truly trusting Marian.
I wanted to cry when reading this book. The unfairness in which Marian has been treated broke my heart. The cross that she bears shows her strength and courage. Duncan overcoming this cross shows his compassion and loyalty.
Possessed by the Highlander started out with a solid 3 rating but definitely earned a 4.5 by the end of the story. I recommend giving this one a try!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

My Lord and Spymaster by Joanne Bourne

#9. Military or Civil Servant
Rating: 5 stars
324 pages

Back Cover: Raised as a poor but cunning pickpocket, Jess Whitby may have grown into a wealthy young woman, but now she must once again rely on her guile. Her father's been wrongly accused of selling secrets to Napoleon, and he is going to hang-unless Jess finds the real traitor in the London underworld. She never dreamed her search would begin by waking up naked in a rude captian's bed. Or how little she'd mind...
When Captain Sebastian Kennett prevents a kidnapping on the London docks, he takes the headstrong would-be victin home. He's infatuated with her courageous spirit. She's enthralled by his commanding strength and the sexy spark in her eyes. The she discovers something else about the spellbinding seaman: He could be the traitor she's hunting, the man whose next move could determine her father's fate- and her future as well.

Review: My Lord and Spymaster was a great follow up to The Spymaster's Lady. The secondary characters, Adrian and Doyle, from The Spymaster's Lady made appearances here as well.
Jess has set her mind to figuring out who Cinq, the traitor selling information to France, and freeing her father before it is too late. Bastard Kennett is number one on her list of suspects. Her attempt to lift any information Kennett may be carrying on his body is foiled when a group of Irish men attempt to abduct Jess from Katherine Lane. She has now fallen into Sebastian's clutches and Adrian has requested that Sebastian protect Jess from Cinq and herself.
There is an immediate spark between these two, the tension is electric. You could feel Jess and Sebastian coming together...see Jess fighting it. It was sweet the way Sebastian took his time with Jess and seemed to know exactly what to do. He knew when Jess's mind was up to something that was going to get her into trouble and he always knew just what to do to help her. I was totally engrossed in My Lord and Spymaster from the very beginning, there was always something happening. Cinq' identity took my by surprise, I was not expecting it at all.
After reading Nicholas, this book seemed PG-13. I definitely recommend reading both My Lord and Spymaster and The Spymaster's Lady, and no they do not need to be read in order. There is actually a third book to this series, but unfortunately it is out of print.

Nicholas by Elizabeth Amber

Rating: 4.5 stars
Published: 2007
319 pages
Back Cover: Nicholas looks very much like what he is- the handsome, successful heir to a vineyard in Tuscany. But Nicholas is much more, for he is one of the last in an ancient line of satyr men. And the dying king of Elseworld wants him not only to marry, but to wed one of the king's own daughters- a half-human, half-faerie woman unaware of her heritage. Nicholas won't shirk his duty to produce heirs to guard his race's legacies, but he never plans to make his bride his only lover. A satyr's sexual hunger and sensual skills are legendary. One woman will never satisfy him.
Or so Nicholas believes until he meets Jane. As spirited as she is fey, as beautiful as she is innocent, she is nevertheless determined to make her new husband hers alone- and she is eager for him to teach her every deliciously carnal secret he knows.
WARNING! This is a REALLY HOT book... very explicit!!
Review: This was my first experience with a novel of this type. I have read several paranormal romances but this one has topped the cake. As said above this is a very sexually explicit book. There were things in this book that actually shocked me...well not really but they should have! The sexual scenes were great, if not a little beyond my comfort zones. I thoroughly enjoyed the story too.
Jane is completely unaware of her heritage. She is ashamed of the changes that she has been experiencing since puberty... not those of a normal well bred English girl. She abhors anything having to do with wine... she blames wine for her mothers death and her father's downfall. Her father has moved Jane and her sister to their aunts home in Italy. Her aunt has some grand schemes going on... a very devious B**** to say the very least.
Nicholas accomplishes the task set out for him rather easily. Not only has he has found Jane, the daughter of the King of Elseworld, but he has arranged a marriage between them. Jane does not understand why Nicholas would ask for after only a short meeting.
I was not very happy with Nicholas's treatment with Jane at the beginning of their marriage. I could not believe that this man who's sexual desires were so great could be this cold toward the woman who was going to spend the rest of her life with him and bare his children. I was relieved when Jane took matters into her own hands and tipped the scales into her favor. The love that eventually bloomed between these two was sweet and very passionate.
If you are looking for a change of pace and something completely shocking to your senses, try this book out. I look forward to reading the remaining books in the Lords of Satyr series.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A Big THANK YOU to Cindy W.

I am the winner in Cindy W's recent book give away. After reading her review, how could I not enter the contest!

Cindy says she has found her favorite book for 2009 in Broken Wing by Judith James. I went out in search of Broken Wing the same day I signed up for the give away not thinking that I would win, of course I didn't find the book on any of the near by book shelves (to my greatest disappointment). Read her awesome review and get inspired to read this book too.

click on the picture to read her review

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn

ROR Winter Challenge #14
Published 2000
352 pages
Rating: 5 stars
The Viscount Who Loved Me is the second book in the Bridgerton Series, giving us Anthony's story. Reading this so close to The Duke and I was probably a mistake in some parts. I am not rating it less though, I thoroughly enjoyed this story and it definitely deserves a 5 star rating, however it just wasn't as good as The Duke and I.
Anthony has decided it is time for him to get married. And Anthony always gets what he wants. Struggling with some very personal issues and fears he surmises a list of attributes that his future bride must possess, the most important one being that he MUST not be able to fall in love with her.
He meets the Sheffield sisters and instantly sees that they younger, Edwina, is a perfect match to his criteria while the older, Kate, is exasperating. Kate is Anthony in female form! So why is that he is drawn to Kate and not Edwina? It was fun to watch Anthony struggle with not achieving or getting what he wants. The banter between Anthony and Kate was great. I think the funniest part of the book was the Bridgerton Pall Mall game. Having played many of family games (primarily with my mother and aunts...who also love to cheat when ever possible) I can definitely relate and it just cracked me up.
There wasn't as much interaction with the Bridgerton siblings in The Viscount Who Loved Me, which I am thinking is why I thought that it was a good book but not as good as the Duke and I. The sibling quarrels and rivalry is something that definitely makes this series so good!!
All in all it was a great book and I definitely continue to recommend reading this series!!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Dark Lover by JR Ward

Published: 2005
393 pages
Back Cover: In the Shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there's a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers- six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing their enemies more than Wrath, the leader of the Black Dagger Brotherhood...
The only Purebred vampire left on the planet, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But when one of his most trusted fighters is killed- orphaning a half-breed daughter unaware of her heritage or her fate- Wrath must usher the beautiful female into the world of the undead...
Racked by restlessness in her body that wasn't there before, Beth Randall is helpless against the dangerously sexy man who comes to her at night with shadows in his eyes. His tales of brotherhood and blood frighten her. But his touch ignites a dawning hunger that threatens to consume them both...
Review: I had never even heard of this series before meeting up with the people on Shelfari. I have been missing out on some serious action with these brothers.
Dark Lover started out a little slow, but once it picked up it did so with a BANG! The scenes are hot and passionate. There is a lot of action. It sets you up very well for the next several books in the series, introducing you to all the key players. I am definitely hooked and can't wait to get to the next one in the series. I might just forsake the rest of my reading list just to read this series!!!
A definite must read for anyone who loves a good Vamp book!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Natural Born Charmer by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

Published 2007
400 pages

Back Cover: Chicago quarterback Dean Robillard is the luckiest man in the world. But life in the glory lane has started to pale, and Dean has set off on a cross-country trip to figure out what's gone wrong. When he hits a lonly stretch of Colorado highway, he spies something that will shake up his gilded life in ways he can't imagine. A young woman...dressed in a beaver suit.
Blue Bailey is on a mission. As for the beaver suit she's wearing... Is it her fault that life keeps throwing her curve balls? Witness the expensive black sports car pulling up next to her on the highway and the Greek god stepping out of it.
They're soon heading for his summer home, where their already complicated lives and inconbenient attraction to each other will become entangled with a charismatic but aging rock star; a beautiful, fifty-two -old woman trying to make peace with her rock and roll past; an eleven -year-old who desperately needs a family; and a bitter old woman who hates them all.
Natural Born Charmer... for anyone who's ever thought about leaving their old life in the dust and never looking back. Susan Elizabeth Phillips takes us home again... and shows us where love truly lives.

Review: I have been wanting to read a Susan Elizabeth Phillips book since some of they lady's in a Shelfari group started raving about her. I must say that this must not have been the best one for me to start with. Had I not checked this out on audio I don't know that I would have finished this book. The first two chapters were really rough for me, not only was the story really bad but the the reader was awful. I hated the voices that she put to some of the side characters.
Fortunately the book and the reader did get better! I can at least rate this book at a 3. The relationship between Blue and Dean was just so-so. I hated the nickname "the Beave" that Dean insisted on calling Blue during the beginning of the book. Blue reminded me of a mix of Sandra Bullock characters in Two Week Notice and Miss Congeniality, you know the ones where she is a constant smart ass and not particularly smart or pretty person... the one you kind of feel sorry for but in the end you are certainly rooting for her. There are abandonment issues in both courts, but what Dean demanded of Blue to prove herself was selfish and mean.
It was just OK. Not a book that I recommend running out immediately to read this book. I will eventually read another SEP book, it just won't be anytime soon.

Butterfly Award

Randilyn gave this award to me. Thank you so much it is beautiful!!This is a meme award to be passed on.

The rules are:
1. Post the logo on your blog
2. Add link to the person who awarded it to you
3. Award up to 10 blogs
4. Add links to those blogs in your award post
5. Leave a message for awardee on their blog
Heather @ Heather's Books

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Lemonade Award

The Lemonade Award was given to me by DeSeRtRoSe...Thank you DR you are sooo sweet!
The Lemonade Award is for blogs with great attitude and/or gratitude.
Now I'm supposed to pass it on. I'm awarding it to:
Cindy W @ Cindy Reads Romance and
Heather @ Heather's Books

Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Duke and I by Julia Quinn

Winter ROR #3. Read a book that has a “D” word in it for December
SRC: book 1 in the Bridgerton series
Published: 2000
371 pages
Rating: 5 stars

Back Cover: The duke and the debutante made a bargain to keep the ton's matchmakers at bay- but what happens when the charade becomes all to real?

Review: I read the third book in the series some time ago and it created an interest in the series but now the interest has grown into a definite need to read about the remaining siblings (and maybe a reread of An Offer From a Gentleman).

The Duke and I had me on a roller coaster of emotions. I was laughing out loud, cursing the father (and the duke occasionally), misty eyed, and yes sighing again and again! Daphne is the fourth in line of the Bridgerton 8 children, the oldest daughter. She has entered her second season as a debutante with a smidgen of marriage proposals all turned down for very good reason. She has started to loose all hope of finding a match that is tolerable. Her mother Violet, on the other hand thinks quite differently and is deemed one of the most eager Mamas of the ton.

Simon has just arrived back in England and has been warned that now that he has received the Dukedom he has become the most eligible bachelor in town. The Mamas and their daughters are going to be all over him. He strikes up a deal with Daphne to keep Violet from parading her in front of every suitable bachelor in England and to keep the marriage minded Mamma's away from him.

These two are a match made in Heaven however!

Another Highly Recommended must read. If you have not experienced the Bridgertons you are definitely missing out on a great time!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

The Leopard Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt

ROR Winter Challenge #2. Title read and reviewed during the Fall Challenge (Cindy W)
SRC: Book two (book 1: The Raven Prince, read '08)
Published 2007
345 pages
Rating: 5 stars

Wealthy Lady Georgina Maitland doesn't want a husband, though she could use a good steward to run her estates. One look at Harry Pye, and Georgina knows she's not just dealing with a servant, but a man.
Harry has known many aristocrats- including one particular nobleman who is his sworn enemy. But Hary has never met a beautiful lady so independent, uninhibited, and eager to be in his arms.
Still, it's impossible to conduct a discreet liaison when poisoned sheep, murdered villagers, and an enraged magistrate have the county in an uproar. The locas blame Harry for everything. Soon it's all Georgina can do to keep her head above water and Harry's out of the noose... without missing another night of love.

My Review: I had a rough time of getting started with this book. I don't know if it was all the activity that comes with the holidays or if it was just slow getting started. Being stranded in a car for eleven hours definitely cured me of whatever it was holding me back in getting into this Hoyt novel. I must say that it was definitely worth the wait!
I enjoyed the relationship between George and Harry much more than I did with Anna and Edward from The Raven Prince. I think it may have to do with the idea of forbidden love. George has waited so long... well not really waited so much as prolonged what seems to be the inevitable, only to find love in the arms of her "servant". George definitely knew what she wanted. You could definitely feel the internal struggles that both George and Harry experienced. This novel will definitely put you into a great big SIGH mode...sweet, passionate, and mysterious! The mystery surrounding this couple definitely added a little umph to the story line! While I wasn't completely taken by surprise with who was guilty of poisoning the sheep, it was rather surprising nonetheless.
The Loepard Prince is by far my favorite of the three Elizabeth Hoyt novels that I have read. It definitely earns a spot on my keeper shelf.
Blog Design Created By Barbara Using V. Karolyi's A Little Like Summer