Category: Features

Just In Case You Were Wondering…=)

Posted May 31, 2008 by Rowena in Features | 5 Comments

The winner of the Jennifer Crusie Battle of the Heroes is:


This battle was the closest we ever got, because Cal won by just one vote which was pretty hot damn cool! Thanks to everyone who participated and stay tuned for more Author Spotlight fun to come in June…=)

Congrats to all of you Cal fans out there, you guys helped bring your hero over the top! =)

Rowena and the gals at Book Binge.

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What I’ve Been Reading This Week

Posted May 26, 2008 by Tracy in Features | 5 Comments

A Perfect Match by Shelley Bradley is what started off my reading week and it was so great! (see review and link to excerpt below) Sweet, fun, romantic, hot. Very nice!

As most of you know I’ll be attending Lora Leigh’s RAW this Sept. and I’m making it a point to read as many of the books by the authors attending as possible. Dear God in heaven I had no idea how many books some of these authors had written! Seriously!!! I made a list of all the books by all the authors. Holy Shit that’s a lot of books. There’s no way I will read them all, but I’ll give it the old college try!

My Immortal by Erin McCarthy (RAW author) had long been recommended to me but I just hadn’t picked it up. I really liked this book. I felt the end could have been a little stronger, but overall a good read. You can read more about her Seven Deadly Sins series, of which this is the first book here.

I started a series this week by Lorie O’Clare (RAW author) called the Lunewulf series. Not the strongest of series I’ve read, but I do like shifter stories so they kept me coming back. The first was Lunewulf Law. A British Columbian werewolf pack who faces certain extinction after 36 of their females are shot by hunters unless some desperate measures are taken. Crazy pack leader passes pack law that each single female must take 3 mates.

Next I moved on to Dark Desires After Dusk by Kresley Cole. I know that her last book only came out 3 weeks ago but I was really waiting impatiently for this one. I loved Cadeon and Holly. I thought their story was great and of course am now going to have to wait yet more time for the next book. Arg! Love Kresley Cole!!

Book 2 in the Lunewulf series by Lorie O’Clare is In Her Blood. Elsa wants nothing to do with the new pack law so she runs. Eventually she lands in Minnesota and meets Pack Leader Rick Bolton. Sparks fly. Her pack and her 3 mates are chasing her. What’s a Bitch to do?

Book 3 in the Lunewulf series In Her Dreams is the story of Johann who is from the BC pack and Elsa from the previous book was supposed to be his mate. He runs into Samantha when he starts to chase Elsa.

Book 4 in the Lunewulf series is Simone and Rock’s story. Simone is the pack slut but still doesn’t want to take 3 mates. Rock is a Cariboo Lunewulf who is very dominating and wants Simone. There were so many times in this book that I actually liked Rock but for the most part the hair pulling and tieing up of the heroine just got a little old.
Blue-Eyed Devil by Lisa Kleypas. OMG what can I say about this book but go read it!!! Seriously. What a great story and the characters were wonderful! Hardy…mmmm, Hardy. Those kisses! Whew! Read about the first book in this series, Sugar Daddy, and all of her wonderful books at her site:

Book 5 in the Lunewulf series by Lorie O’Clare was In Her Soul. Trudy had 3 mates but not for long. Two of them eventually left the pack and one got convicted and killed because of murder. Nice. Poor Trudy she needs to find a new man. Well she finds one in Adam but he’s off trying to find someone who’s trying to expose and kill the werewolf packs. What’s to become of their relationship? Oh, and this is one of those covers that just makes you go WTF?
Last but certainly not least was a short story in the Lunewulf series called Full Moon Rising. It was a good one, but had absolutely no Lunewulf in it so it kind of was the odd man out. Beth, big time lawyer….Ethan big time pack leader meet, mate, have HEA. Overall I’d give the Lunewulf series 3 stars out of 5. You can read more about the stories here.

Happy Reading!!

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Thursday Thirteen: 13 Heroines That Need To Die

Posted May 22, 2008 by Holly in Features | 8 Comments

Today’s Thursday Thirteen comes to you courtesy of Casee and Holly and their frustration with TSTL romance novel heroines.

13 Heroines That Need To Die

Holly: 1. Jenny from Judith McNaught’s A Kingdom of Dreams.

Casee: 2. Gabriella Harrison from A Long Road Home by Danielle Steel

Holly: 3. Anna Rosewood from Scandal of the Black Rose by Debra Mullins

Casee: 4. Jessica Stanton from All That Glitters by Linda Howard

Holly: Good call on that one *headesk*

5. Mary (what’s her last name) from Lover Eternal by J.R. Ward

Casee: No way. But thanks for reminding me.

6. Marissa from Lover Revealed by JRW

Hate that bitch.

7. Catherine Enderly from Stormfire by Christine Monson

8. Joan DaCosta from Into the Night by Suz Brockmann

She was so annoying.

Holly: Oh, that reminds me:

9. Pretty much every heroine in Suz Brockmann’s Team 16 series.

Casee: Dude, you can’t do that. What about Teri? And Gina? They were good heroines.

Holly: They were? I wouldn’t know, cause I didn’t read their books. LOL But I did say “pretty much”.

Casee: Thanks for clarifying that.

10. Catherine Aldley from Island Flame by Karen Robards

I didn’t hate the book though.

Holly: 11. Bella from the Twilight Series by Stephanie Meyers.

Casee: 12. Paxton Andrews from Message From Nam by Danielle Steel.

Holly: 13. Hope Malory from Raintree: Haunted by Linda Winstead-Jones

Can you believe Casee came up with more heroines to hate than I did? Crazy, isn’t it? I’m going to give an honorable mention to Julie from Perfect by Judith McNaught, but don’t tell Casee and Rowena, ok? Shhh, it’ll be our little secret.

So, do you have a favorite heroine you love to hate? Leave us a comment and let us know.

Want to join in on the fun? Check out the Thursday Thirteen website for details.

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What I’ve Been Reading This Week

Posted May 18, 2008 by Tracy in Features | 9 Comments

My reading week started off with a bang with Duke of Shadows. I thoroughly loved it and highly recommend it! If interested you can read Chapter 1 here.

Then I moved on to The Darkest Night (The Lords of the Underworld Book 1) by Gena Showalter. This is the first book I’ve read by this author. I enjoyed this book though I had a few issues with some repetitive things in it. That definitely won’t stop me from reading the other books in this series. Excerpt

Next on the list was a short I received as a gift from Anne Rainey. She was running a contest on someone else’s yahoo group but I didn’t win. Several emails later she gifted me with the story. Although I enjoyed the story for the most part the hero in this short was a little too dominating for me…and not in a dom fashion. Just kind of in an annoying one! Excerpt

Kate Douglas told me about a free story called “68 and Climbing” on her Yahoo Group so I went on over and checked it out. It was a cute story with good characters and I very much enjoyed it!

Next on my list was Darkness Everlasting (Guardians of Eternity book 3) by Alexandra Ivy. I really enjoy this series. I’m not sure what it is about it that draws me book after book but I keep buying and reading them! lol You can read more about her series on her website.

Next up was the book I read for the TBR Challenge through which was Bride of the Mist. I will review this for you this coming Wednesday.

Last but certainly not least I reread Falling for Anthony by Meljean Brook, a novella in the Hot Spell Anthology. I just love this story. Meljean’s characters are always so vivid in their descriptions and I always feel like I’m right there in the room with them. Just love her books! You can read an excerpt here.

Happy Reading to All!

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Author Spotlight: Jennifer Crusie – Calvin Morrisey

Posted May 7, 2008 by Holly in Features | 3 Comments

For the JC author spotlight, here is another post Ween did over at our old blog.

Women the world over want one thing from men. One of many things I’m sure, but one thing in particular.

To be accepted and loved for who they really are, both inside and out. Now, let’s face it, most guys – especially the hot guys – don’t really notice the wallflower or the plain jane and they most definitely don’t notice the chubby chick sitting across from them checking them out. How often do you hear a really hot guy say, “Holy cow, look at the brain on that girl? That’s hot.”

Not so often.

You hardly EVER hear of a gorgeous man falling head over heels in love with a chubby Plain Jane type. It just doesn’t happen. Society these days have brainwashed everyone to think that you’re only hot stuff if you’re super duper skinny and don’t eat for twenty days. If you’re not rocking the latest hip threads and dressed and looking like a million bucks, odds are you’re not going to get a Justin Timberlake or a Hugh Jackman. It really sucks but that’s the way of things these days.

But that’s not the case with Cal Morrissey.

When we first meet Cal Morrissey we’re furious with him because of what he agrees to do with Minn Dobbs. But he makes up for that and more when he fell in love with Plain Jane Chubby Minn Dobbs. With everyone that was trying to change Minn to be skinny and NOT herself, it was a refreshing change to see Cal, this gorgeous Greek God, trying to make her realize that she was perfect the way she was, plus size and all. He accepted and loved her just the way she was and it made me love Cal Morrissey all the more.

There are plenty of stories where the heroine is not so skinny and the hero falls in love with her anyway. But, usually the heroine goes through a tremendous change in appearance where she goes from a really chubby chick to a really skinny and gorgeous heroine. We’re made to believe that the hero loved her for who she really was and not who she became. In Susan Donovan’s He Loves Lucy, we know that Theo Redmond, the hero falls in love with Lucy O’Callahan, the heroine while he’s helping her lose weight for her job. So yeah, he falls in love with her, but by the time they fall in love, she’s not so chubby anymore and I’m not saying that Theo didn’t love Lucy any less than Cal loved Minn, I’m just saying that it would have been nice to see Theo fall in love with Lucy BEFORE she lost all of the weight.

The difference between Theo and Cal, is Cal loved Minn just the way she was, Minn didn’t have to lose all this weight for him to love her more, she just was who she was and Cal fell in love with that. He was in love with her and loved how she completed him as a man.

One of my favorite scenes in Cal’s book, Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie, is the scene where Cal goes to meet Minn’s family for the first time. You see, Minn’s sister is getting married and she has to lose all this weight to please her mother, and to fit into the dress that they got a size too small for Minn to get her to lose weight before the wedding. The following scene ensues and it just made me love Cal Morrissey.

“Bread?” Min said, shoving the basket under Cal’s nose.

“Yes, thank you.” Cal took a roll and handed her the basket back. She took one, too, and her mother spoke again.


“Right,” Min said and put the roll back.

“So you own your own business,” George said, skepticism heavy in his voice.

“Yes.” Cal frowned down at Min. “Why can’t you have a roll?”

“I told you, I have this dress I have to fit into,” Min said. “It’s all right. I can eat bread again in July.”

“Min is Diana’s maid of honor next weekend,” Nanette said. “We don’t want her to get too big for the dress.”

“I’m already too big for the dress,” Min said.

“You should come,” Diana said to Cal, leaning across the table. She hadn’t touched the bread, the butter, or her beef, Cal noticed. Her water glass was getting quite a workout, though. “To the wedding. And the rehearsal dinner. Min needs a date.”

Before Cal could answer, George said, “Who are some of your clients?” and Nanette said, “How long have you and Min been dating?” and Min tugged on his sleeve. When he looked down at her, she said, “Do you have family?”

“Yes,” Cal said, trying to sound noncommittal about it.

“Are they this awful?” Min said.

“Minerva,” Nanette said, warning in her voice.

“Well, they do let me eat bread,” Cal said, keeping his eye on Nanette. “Other than that, pretty much.”

“I beg your pardon?” George said.

“Look, I don’t mind you grilling me about what I do for a living,” Cal said. “Your daughter’s brought me home and that has some significance. And I don’t mind your wife asking about my personal life for the same reason. But Min is an amazing woman, and so far during this meal, you’ve either ignored her or hassled her about some dumb dress. For the record, she is not too big for the dress. The dress is too small for her. She’s perfect.” Cal buttered a roll and passed it over to Min. “Eat.”

Min blinked at him and took the roll.

Cal looked past her to her mother. “I’ve never been married. I’ve never been engaged. My last relationship ended about two months ago. I met your daughter three weeks ago.” He turned back to Min’s father. “The business is in the black and has been for some time. I can give you references if you’d like to check. Should things between Min and me ever grow serious, I can support her.”

“Hey, I can support me,” Min said, still holding her roll.

“I know,” Cal said. “Your dad wants to know that I can. Eat.” Min bit into the roll and he looked around the table. “Anything else anybody wants to know?”

Diana held up her hand.

“Yes?” Cal said.

“Are you Min’s date for the wedding?”

Min tried to swallow the bite she’d just taken.

“She hasn’t asked me.” Cal looked down at Min. “Want to go to your sister’s wedding with me?”

Min choked on her roll and he pounded her on the back.

“Of course she wants to go with you.” Nanette said, smiling for the first time. “We’d be delighted to have you. The rehearsal dinner, too.”

“Good,” Cal said, feeling progress had been made as Min gasped for air.

You gotta love the way Cal took control of the situation and put everyone’s mind at ease at the same time. Cal is a tall, dark and extremely handsome man and he could have any woman in the world. Him turning his nose up to all those model types and falling for someone as plain and simple as Minn gives all of us normal girls hope that we too can end up with the boy. Not just any boy or a boy, but the boy. I love it.

Cal wasn’t the perfect hero and that worked for me, he had his issues like any normal family but I loved the way he stood up for Min, and I loved it when he called her insufferable mother a dragon of a mother. I just loved it. I loved how he was always on Min’s side no matter what, he didn’t play with her emotions, he couldn’t help falling in love with her and when he came to grips with it, there was no turning back for him, he went after her with all he had. What more could you ask for in a man?

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