Author: Courtney Milan

Throwback Thursday Review: Unclaimed by Courtney Milan

Posted March 22, 2018 by Holly in Reviews | 2 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Unclaimed by Courtney MilanReviewer: Holly
Unclaimed (Turner, #2) by Courtney Milan
Series: Turner #2
Also in this series: Unlocked (Turner, #1.5)

Publication Date: September 20th 2011
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 422
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Series Rating: four-stars

Her only hope for survival...

Handsome, wealthy and respected, Sir Mark Turner is the most sought-after bachelor in all of London and he's known far and wide for his irreproachable character. But behind his virtuous reputation lies a passionate nature he keeps carefully in check...until he meets the beautiful Jessica Farleigh, the woman he's waited for all his life.

Is to ruin the man she loves...

But Jessica is a courtesan, not the genteel lady Sir Mark believes. Desperate to be free of a life she despises, she seizes her chance when Mark's enemies make her an offer she can't refuse--seduce Mark and tarnish his good name, and a princely sum will be hers. Yet as she comes to know the man she's sworn to destroy, Jessica will be forced to choose between the future she needs and the love she knows is impossible.

Every Thursday in 2018 we will be posting throwback reviews of our favorite and not-so-favorite books.

This review was originally published on September 28, 2011.

I considered not finishing this book when, more than halfway through, the heroine was still being dishonest about her motives and intentions with the hero. While I’m glad I finished it, I find her actions – both before he learned of her deceit and after – tarnished the story.

Jessica is a courtesan that can’t stand to be touched by men. She needs money to start over somewhere else and the only way she can get it is by ruining the most popular man in England. Mark Turner is supposed to be chaste, but Jessica knows all men have a price. She just has to find his. If she can, she’ll receive enough money from her former protector to start a quiet life elsewhere.

Mark needs a break from the pressure of London and the hordes of adoring fans, so he retires to the country. Which is where he meets the widow Jessica Farleigh. Mark isn’t just chaste – he’s trying to live a chaste lifestyle. That means doing the right thing because it’s right, not because it’s fashionable. He isn’t a hypocrite. He has needs and desires the same as every other man. He’s just chosen not to act on them..because to do so wouldn’t be fair to either himself or the lady in question.

Jessica is wounded. Her life hasn’t been what she expected it would be and things have only gone from bad to worse. She needs an out, and for a woman in her position life doesn’t offer many. I understood that. But I had a hard time connecting with her. Part of the problem is my own hang-up. I can’t stand it when a character keeps a massive secret from his/her counterpart for the entire book. Especially when it’s something that will cause the other person pain. Since Jessica did this – even having good reasons for doing so – I had a really hard time forgiving her.

Aside from that, I truly enjoyed her personal journey. She needed to learn to like herself. It wasn’t always easy, but with Mark’s help she was able to recognize her own worth. I found this personal aspect of her story fascinating.

Mark was..well, honestly, Mark was close to perfect. He wasn’t just pretending to be a chaste man. He wasn’t just pretending to want to do the right thing. He was a flawed man willing to own his mistakes and shortcomings, and to try to overcome them. It wasn’t that he wasn’t flawed, because he was, but he accepted his flaws.

This was a well written historical romance that deals very well with the personal journey of the heroine. But I found it somewhat lacking in the romance. Not that I didn’t believe in the HEA, but I wasn’t invested in them as a couple so much as I was curious about them as individuals.

The romance world needs more heroes like Sir Mark Turner.

3.75 out of 5

e=UTF8&tag=boobin-20&link_code=btl&camp=213689&creative=392969″ target=”_blank”>here or here in e-format.


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Guest Review: Hold Me by Courtney Milan

Posted November 14, 2016 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Guest Review: Hold Me by Courtney MilanReviewer: Tracy
Hold Me by Courtney Milan
Series: Cyclone Series #2
Also in this series: Trade Me
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: October 25th 2016
Format: eARC
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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Series Rating: four-stars

Jay na Thalang is a demanding, driven genius. He doesn’t know how to stop or even slow down. The instant he lays eyes on Maria Lopez, he knows that she is a sexy distraction he can’t afford. He’s done his best to keep her at arm’s length, and he’s succeeded beyond his wildest dreams.

Maria has always been cautious. Now that her once-tiny, apocalypse-centered blog is hitting the mainstream, she’s even more careful about preserving her online anonymity. She hasn’t sent so much as a picture to the commenter she’s interacted with for eighteen months—not even after emails, hour-long chats, and a friendship that is slowly turning into more. Maybe one day, they’ll meet and see what happens.

But unbeknownst to them both, Jay is Maria’s commenter. They’ve already met. They already hate each other. And two determined enemies are about to discover that they’ve been secretly falling in love…

Maria is looking forward to seeing her brother who’s been living in Switzerland.  He’s running late so tells her where to go on the Berkley campus to meet him.  He tells her to ask for his friend Jay and wait there.  Of course when Maria, who is a girly-girl from head to spiked-heeled toe knocks on Jay’s lab door she gets confronted with an asshole.  The guy is rude and assumes that she’s an empty-headed bimbo because of the way she dresses.  Maria gives him shit for it – especially after she finds out that the man is Jay, her brother’s friend.

Jay is fascinated by Maria.  He sooooo doesn’t want to be but he is.  She gives him shit constantly – that he thoroughly deserves, not that he knows that – and he actually likes sparring with her despite the fact he thinks she’s a huge distraction for her brother and his work.

Maria has been texting a guy, who goes by the name Actual Physicist, for the past year and a half.  He is kind and funny and really gets her – he knows her as Em.  She hasn’t shared any personal info with him and he hasn’t shared any with her.  Despite that she’s got extreme feelings for the guy.  When she alludes to them meeting she’s shut down but eventually they decide to talk on the phone.  Before that can happen, however, Maria and Jay figure out that they are Em and Actual Physicist and the shit hits the fan.  Can they reconcile their current hate relationship with the one they have via text and meet somewhere in the middle or is it too late?

When I first started reading this book I honestly hated Jay.  He was such a douche! Judgmental and holier-than-thou – omg I just wanted to slap the boy! I loved how Maria put him in his place and didn’t take his shit.  He did grow on me somewhat later in the book but unfortunately for Jay I never really liked him all that much.  He turned out to be pretty nice in the end but still…I couldn’t forget the earlier Jay.

Maria, for all of her outer confidence, has some serious abandonment issues.  Her parents had kicked her out of the house when she was 12 years old because she’s transgender.  She went to live with her very catholic grandmother and wasn’t sure what to expect when she knocked on her door.  Her reaction to Maria was one of my favorite parts of the book – she totally accepted her with open arms.  Maria asked her grandmother that night if she thought God could make her into a girl, if that was the kind of miracle he did.  Her grandmother’s response was, “I think he already did.” Cue tears and blubbering.  I just love that so much! Go grandma! Ahem. Anyway, back on track…by the time this book is written Maria is post-surgery but she still lives with what her parents did and she can’t seem to think that Jay wouldn’t someday leave her for one reason or another.  I can understand her thinking as what her parents did was harsh, believe me.  I guess I just wish that I had known that the book was more about the abandonment issues than it was the hating each other thing – although that did play a huge part as well.  IDK, it was almost like the story was split into two different parts and I found that a bit disconcerting.

Anyway, the book was good and had some really great parts to it.  Though I didn’t like it as much as book one (mostly because of Jay) I still enjoyed it thoroughly and I’m looking forward to book three in the series.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5


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Guest Review: Trade Me by Courtney Milan

Posted January 28, 2015 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Trade Me by Courtney MilanReviewer: Tracy
Trade Me by Courtney Milan
Series: Cyclone series #1

Publication Date: January 20th 2015
Format: eARC
Genres: New Adult
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Series Rating: four-stars

Tina Chen just wants a degree and a job, so her parents never have to worry about making rent again. She has no time for Blake Reynolds, the sexy billionaire who stands to inherit Cyclone Systems. But when he makes an off-hand comment about what it means to be poor, she loses her cool and tells him he couldn’t last a month living her life.
To her shock, Blake offers her a trade: She’ll get his income, his house, his car. In exchange, he’ll work her hours and send money home to her family. No expectations; no future obligations.
But before long, they’re trading not just lives, but secrets, kisses, and heated nights together. No expectations might break Tina’s heart...but Blake’s secrets could ruin her life.

Tracy’s review of Trade Me )Cyclone #1) by Courtney Milan

Tina works hard to provide for herself and for her family. That’s difficult when she has to pay rent, go to college (pre-med) and work on top of that. It’s doubly frustrating when her mother tends to give away the money Tina sends because she feels that the other people are in greater need. Tina is attracted to Blake but is a bit disgusted with him and what she thinks of as his lavish and lazy lifestyle. Blake starts a conversation with Tina after a “discussion” in one of their classes takes place and as much as she doesn’t want to admit she’s starting to like the billionaire, she does have a crush on him.

Blake has a problem that he’s unwilling to share with his father. He loves his father dearly but he feels like he can’t share this particular problem with him. Blake is afraid of disappointing his father and ends up trying to fix it himself by trading lives with Tina. He thinks if he gets out of the billionaire lifestyle that will help him. Tina doesn’t think that Blake is serious but he definitely is. She quits her job and stays at Blake’s place along with “earning” the money he normally spends in a months time.  She also has to help write a script for an upcoming release of an item that Blake’s dads company is coming out with – easier said than done. While working on the script and communicating about their lives, the pair actually end up becoming friends and then so much more.

I really enjoyed this contemporary book by Milan. She had me pulled into the story from almost minute one and I couldn’t put the book down. There were so many things that I liked about the book – from the writing to the relationship Blake had with his father…strange as it was. I thought Blake was a really good guy and loved his personality. My heart broke for him and the problem that he focused so much of his life on.

Tina was a bit harder for me to warm up to. I think because she had her hackles up so much that she just seemed prickly – even after her and Blake became friends. I did enjoy the times they spent as lovers but I definitely felt that the relationship was heavier on Blake’s side than Tina’s. I believe she was still in the he’s-so-hot-I-can’t-believe-he-wants-to-even-talk-to-me stage even at the end of the book – after they’d become lovers. I just wanted her to accept Blake for the wonderful guy he was and get past her preconceived notion of who Blake was on the inside.

Overall this was a very good New Adult book and I’m looking forward to reading more in this series.

Rating: 4 out of 5


This title is self-published. You can buy it here or here in e-format. This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


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Review: Unlocked by Courtney Milan

Posted June 21, 2011 by Rowena in Reviews | 6 Comments

Review: Unlocked by Courtney MilanReviewer: Rowena
Unlocked (Turner, #1.5) by Courtney Milan
Series: Turner #1.5
Also in this series: Unclaimed (Turner, #2)
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: May 31, 2011
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 111
Add It: Goodreads
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Series Rating: four-stars

A perpetual wallflower destined for spinsterhood, Lady Elaine Warren is resigned to her position in society. So when Evan Carlton, the powerful, popular Earl of Westfeld, singles her out upon his return to England, she knows what it means. Her former tormenter is up to his old tricks, and she’s his intended victim. This time, though, the earl is going to discover that wallflowers can fight back.

Evan has come to regret his cruel, callow past. At first, he only wants to make up for past wrongs. But when Elaine throws his initial apology in his face, he finds himself wanting more. And this time, what torments him might be love…

This book was so short but that did nothing to hinder my enjoyment of this book. I freaking adored it and was surprised that I loved it as much as I did, considering it was only 110 pages. Courtney Milan packed a helluva punch in this short story and I literally ate it all up. I adored this book and thought it was too cute for words.

This story follows Lord Evan Carlton as he comes back home from being abroad and growing into a man to make things right with the girl that he made the laughingstock of the ton. Evan has a great many things that he’s sorry for and being an immature little shit is one of them. Lady Elaine Warren isn’t a fan of Evan’s and he can’t blame her since the last time he saw her, she was the butt of his jokes and his friends went to great lengths (and to his chagrin, still do) to make her feel like an idiot in front of a crowd.

Evan’s time away has taught him how to be a better man and he hopes that Lady Elaine will forgive him…even though he’d understand if she never did. His cousin and long time friend is still the ton’s resident mean girl and Evan has become ashamed of the woman that she still is. She continues to rag on Lady Elaine and he wants nothing to do with it. Evan goes through the hardships of trying to repair his friendship with Lady Elaine and the friendship that blossoms between the two of them was my favorite part of the story.

I loved Evan, I loved that he realized what an ass he was and I adored how sorry he was. He was determined to make things better for Lady Elaine and I loved it. I really enjoyed that Milan didn’t play what he did down in order to make Evan more likable because by showing us just how hurtful Evan was, it was easy for me to see just how sorry he really was. Everything he did to try to get back in Lady Elaine’s good graces made me melt and the speech he gave in front of everyone and the things that he said to his cousin? SWOON! I loved it all.

Lady Elaine had every right to hate Lord Carlton and his crowd. She was so strong to have put up with the snickers and the hurtful words thrown her way. She earned my respect each and every time she stood up to Lady Diana and for the fierce way she protected her mother. She didn’t back down to anyone and with each passing page, I admired her more and more.

The thing that I enjoyed most about this story was that even though it was such a short story, it didn’t feel like it was. It also didn’t suffer for having being such a short story. Milan did a wonderful job of sucking me into the story and not letting go. Though I didn’t want the book to end, I wasn’t left wanting more when I was finished. I was thoroughly entertained throughout the entire book and cannot wait for more from Courtney Milan.

Kudos on a job well done, Mrs. Milan.

Grade: 4.75 out of 5

This book is available from Courtney Milan. You can buy it here and here in e-format.


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