Author: Nora Roberts

Review: Year One by Nora Roberts

Posted February 8, 2018 by Casee in Reviews | 9 Comments

Review: Year One by Nora RobertsReviewer: Casee
Year One (Chronicles of The One #1) by Nora Roberts
Series: Chronicles of The One #1
Published by Macmillan, St. Martin's Press
Publication Date: December 5th 2017
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 419
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three-half-stars

A stunning new novel from the number-one New York Times best-selling author - an epic of hope and horror, chaos and magic, and a journey that will unite a desperate group of people to fight the battle of their lives...

It began on New Year’s Eve.

The sickness came on suddenly, and spread quickly. The fear spread even faster. Within weeks, everything people counted on began to fail them. The electrical grid sputtered; law and government collapsed—and more than half of the world’s population was decimated.

Where there had been order, there was now chaos. And as the power of science and technology receded, magic rose up in its place. Some of it is good, like the witchcraft worked by Lana Bingham, practicing in the loft apartment she shares with her lover, Max. Some of it is unimaginably evil, and it can lurk anywhere, around a corner, in fetid tunnels beneath the river—or in the ones you know and love the most.

As word spreads that neither the immune nor the gifted are safe from the authorities who patrol the ravaged streets, and with nothing left to count on but each other, Lana and Max make their way out of a wrecked New York City. At the same time, other travelers are heading west too, into a new frontier. Chuck, a tech genius trying to hack his way through a world gone offline. Arlys, a journalist who has lost her audience but uses pen and paper to record the truth. Fred, her young colleague, possessed of burgeoning abilities and an optimism that seems out of place in this bleak landscape. And Rachel and Jonah, a resourceful doctor and a paramedic who fend off despair with their determination to keep a young mother and three infants in their care alive.

In a world of survivors where every stranger encountered could be either a savage or a savior, none of them knows exactly where they are heading, or why. But a purpose awaits them that will shape their lives and the lives of all those who remain.

The end has come. The beginning comes next.

Where do I even begin with this book? I feel like it has plagued me since it was first released, followed me through Christmas and into the new year. I thought that if I could just sit down and get into it, I would have no problem finishing it. That was true and not true. It was really hard to put this book into the “paranormal romance” category because it’s not really a romance, but it is paranormal. It has more of a “post-apocalypse” vibe, yet there was no apocalypse. You could go either way. I went with paranormal romance because there is romance in it. Maybe a “paranormal almost post-apocalypse romance”?

It was not easy for me to get into this book and this had nothing to do with the time I had or didn’t have to read. This is a new world for Roberts and I think it might be a series that’s going to go on for a little while (don’t quote me on that). My reasons are 1) the series is called the Chronicles. That’s it. That’s my reason. Plus there is no way that she went through everything she did in this first book for a trilogy. I am known to be wrong. So there was a lot, a lot of time spent getting to know this world, these characters and how The One was going to be important. Maybe too much time? It is also incredibly hard to bring you a good review because there was so much going on and so many characters.

The book began in Scotland as these books usually do. Or Ireland. From all the information that I was trying to take in, I gathered that it all began at a stone circle in Scotland. Ross MacLeod didn’t know that going hunting for pheasant was going to end his life, the lives of his family, and billions of others. That’s what happened and all because of the bird landing in the stone circle that has been talked about in whispers within his family. Poor guy. The MacLeod family seemed to just be a family on the peripheral, but their daughter ended up being an important part of the book. Ross and his wife, Angie, went home to New York and spread what was going to become known as the “Doom” from Scotland to New York and everywhere in between.

At the same time the Doom started spreading, anyone with any magical ability had their existing ability enhanced. Some that didn’t know they were magical found out they were faeries or elves. Anyone with magical abilities became known as the “Uncanny”. Not everyone was crazy about the Uncannys, which is putting it lightly. The Uncanny’s learned to hide their powers because some people would kill them on sight.

I really want to tell you about every single character, but that would be so boring. I’ll just try to break it down as simple as I can.

First we have Lana and Max, witches from New York who add human Eddie and canine Joe to their caravan. Then you have Jonah, Rachel, Katie (MacLeod’s daughter) and her three newborn babies. You also have Arlys, Fred, and Chuck. So everyone from New York on a mission. They each have their own journeys that eventually lead them to each other, but it wasn’t an easy one. And who is The One? Well, I’m not going to spoil that.

Once I got into it a little more, I finished it in a day and a half. I found myself really enjoying it. There was something I didn’t see coming which I adjusted to, but the ending? Good Lord help me. It was such a rushed ending that I felt ripped off. Not that the ending didn’t need to come, but it was all tied up in such a nice little bow. Nothankyouverymuch. Still, I’ll read the next one.

Grade: 3.5 out of 5

three-half-stars


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Retro-Review: Savor the Moment by Nora Roberts.

Posted November 28, 2017 by Rowena in Reviews | 6 Comments

Retro-Review: Savor the Moment by Nora Roberts.Reviewer: Rowena
Savor the Moment (Bride Quartet, #3) by Nora Roberts
Series: Bride Quartet #3
Also in this series: Vision in White (Bride Quartet, #1), Happy Ever After (Bride Quartet, #4)
Published by Berkley
Publication Date: April 27th 2010
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 325
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four-stars

#1 New York Times bestselling author Nora Roberts cordially invites you to meet childhood friends Parker, Emma, Laurel, and Mac — the founders of Vows, one of Connecticut’s premier wedding planning companies.

Laurel McBane has always relied on her friends for support, especially when her dream of attending culinary school was almost ruined by her parents’ financial problems. Now Laurel is repaying the kindness of her friends by creating extravagantly luscious tiers of cakes and other confectionary delights that add the perfect touch to their clients’ weddings. As for romance, Laurel believes in it — in theory. But she’s too low-key to appreciate all the luxuries that other women seem to long for. What she does appreciate is a strong, intelligent man, a man just like Parker’s older brother, Delaney Brown, on whom Laurel has had a mega crush since childhood.

But some infatuations last longer than others, and Laurel is convinced that the Ivy League lawyer is still out of her reach. Plus, Del is too protective of Laurel to ever cross the line with her, or so she thinks. When Laurel’s quick- silver moods get the better of her — leading to an angry, hot, altogether mind-blowing kiss with Del — she’ll have to quiet the doubts in her mind to turn a moment of passion into forever…

*****As part of our 10 year anniversary celebration, we’ll be re-posting old reviews and posts that make us cringe, laugh or sigh all over again.*****

This review was originally posted on April 27, 2010.

This is another series that I am absolutely in love with. I love that it’s a straight up contemporary series with just two human beings falling in love without be bitten by vampires or taken hostage by terrorists or anything else like that. They’re just two everyday, average, normal people falling in love over the course of time.

This book was good. It was but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I enjoyed Jack and Emma’s story. There were things about this book that I loved, like learning about Laurel’s side of the business, I’ve always been fascinated with baking and Laurel does it well so it was good to see that. I also enjoyed getting to know Del. I’ve always been interested in learning more about Del in the first two books and it was good to finally see Del getting some serious page time.

Laurel and Del’s attraction to each other started in the last book when they’re all at Emma’s family’s house for a bbq and you could tell that this was where that day was going to lead Del and Laurel. Their attraction seemed to simmer on low heat for a few weeks before it boiled right out of the pot. Del is trying to keep seeing Laurel as the little sister he’s always known her to be and Laurel is trying to get over her silly crush on the boy that will always look at her like a little sister. So in a last ditch effort to get Del out of her system, she shows him that she’s NOT his sister and that sets the tone for the rest of the book.

They’re playing this keep away game of Laurel’s shoes and Del is using the shoes to get to know Laurel better. He’s going for this and he’s going to see where it leads them. Watching these two grow closer and closer was cute. Seeing them bicker their way to love made me smile.

Del was a great hero, one who caring, thoughtful and adorable. I really liked him but I didn’t love Del the way that I loved Jack. Del was a good, solid hero but he didn’t make my heart sing the way that his best friend did.

Laurel was one of those feisty heroines who at times made me roll my eyes around the room. Her reasons for being mad at Del about the whole money didn’t make sense to me. She’s known Del most of her life, she’s friends with him. She should have known him enough to understand where he was coming from with the whole paying thing. I mean, she blew something so small into something so big and I just didn’t get it. So Del’s rich, so what? I just didn’t understand where all of her anger from him trying to give her money was coming from. It’s not like he thought she was this two bit loser who he felt sorry for and was trying to give her a break. I could see him doing the exact same thing to Emma and to Mac but Laurel blew that shit up like he was trying to strangle her or something.

Overall, this book was good but it’s not my favorite of the bunch. My favorite part of this book was getting to know Laurel while she was at work. I loved reading about all of her baking bits. Seeing her in action in the kitchen had me wanting to throw my apron on and see what kind of concoctions I could throw together in the kitchen. I love baking in any romance novel and it never fails to amaze me how Nora Roberts can take any occupation out there and make me curious about it. She’s a phenomenal writer and I’m such a fan!

It was good to see the gang all together again and I can’t wait for Parker and Mal’s story. I can’t wait to see how Mal wins her over. It’s going to be interesting because Mal is a fox and Parker is one tough cookie. I can already imagine the sparks that are going to fly. Woot!

Grade: 3.5 out of 5

The Bride Quartet

This book is available from Berkley Trade. You can buy it here.

four-stars


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Guest Review: The Obsession by Nora Roberts

Posted April 12, 2016 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: The Obsession by Nora RobertsReviewer: Tracy
The Obsession by Nora Roberts
Published by Penguin
Publication Date: April 12th 2016
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four-half-stars

Naomi Bowes lost her innocence the night she followed her father into the woods. In freeing the girl trapped in the root cellar, Naomi revealed the horrible extent of her father’s crimes and made him infamous. No matter how close she gets to happiness, she can’t outrun the sins of Thomas David Bowes.

Now a successful photographer living under the name Naomi Carson, she has found a place that calls to her, a rambling old house in need of repair, thousands of miles away from everything she’s ever known. Naomi wants to embrace the solitude, but the kindly residents of Sunrise Cove keep forcing her to open up—especially the determined Xander Keaton.

Naomi can feel her defenses failing, and knows that the connection her new life offers is something she’s always secretly craved. But the sins of her father can become an obsession, and, as she’s learned time and again, her past is never more than a nightmare away.

Naomi is a few days away from her 12th birthday when she follows her father into the woods.  At first she thinks that he’s going to the creek to cool off since it’s so hot outside but he goes into the woods and ends up in a root cellar by a burned out house.  When he finally leaves she sneaks down thinking she’ll find that he’d put together the new bike she’d asked for for her birthday. What she finds is that her father is a monster.  He had been kidnapping raping, beating and then killing women for a long time. Naomi becomes a hero that night.

After her father is arrested Naomi, her younger brother Mason, and their distraught mother go to live with their maternal uncle and his partner who Naomi and Mason grow to love (they had been cut off from him because he was gay).  They all change their name to Carson, their mother’s maiden name, and try to live normal lives but the crimes of their father never were far behind them.

Naomi grows up to be a photographer and moves from place to place, getting attached to nothing and no one.  She likes it that way until she finds Sunrise Cove when she’s 30 years old.  She falls in love with the town and in one house in particular.  She buys it and starts to renovate it and finally puts down roots.

She starts to become part of the community and starts a relationship with a local businessman and mechanic.  Xander is wonderful for her and though he finds out her past he still treats her the same – not like she’s tainted because of who her father is.  Unfortunately, there’s someone out there who has a thing for Naomi and it’s not all champagne and roses.  When Naomi finds out about this villain she has to decide to put her past behind her and move on with the strength to help find the guy or to wallow in her past and let it beat her down once again.

This book was a great one.  I really loved so many things about it.  I loved seeing Naomi as a child and my heart broke for what she discovered about her father – seeing everything first hand.  Then with her mother being broken she really had Mason and her uncles to rely on.  They were always there for her, however, and I loved their strength and support.

Naomi’s relationship with Xander started off kind of strangely, imho.  I didn’t really feel the attraction and quite frankly wasn’t sure if I liked Xander or not.  I started to warm up to him when I saw how much he was falling for Naomi and soon really liked him.  Naomi had closed herself off from caring for anyone except her brother and uncles.  She felt she couldn’t get close to anyone for fear they’d find out about her background and she couldn’t take the attention.  Once in Sunrise Cove it took her a while but she soon realized that she could be truthful and up front about her past and they would not think less of her.  It took time for her to accept but most good things in life do.

The suspense aspect of the story was brought up near the end.  Yes, the obsession had been going on for a while but we’re not made aware of it til later in the book.  I personally thought it came to a kind of abrupt conclusion (I guess I just expected it to be a bit more drawn out) but it got the job done.  Though the book is called The Obsession I didn’t feel like that was what this book was about.  Yes, it was there, and happening in the background, but to me this was a romance novel through and through.  That’s what kept me reading – along with Naomi’s personal growth.

Overall a really good book and one I’d most certainly recommend.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

four-half-stars


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Review: The Perfect Hope by Nora Roberts

Posted February 27, 2013 by Rowena in Reviews | 4 Comments

Review: The Perfect Hope by Nora RobertsReviewer: Rowena
The Perfect Hope (Inn Boonsboro, #3) by Nora Roberts
Series: Inn Boonsboro #3
Published by Penguin, Berkeley
Publication Date: November 6th 2012
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 337
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#1 New York Times bestselling author Nora Roberts introduces you to the Montgomery brothers - Beckett, Ryder, and Owen - as they bring an intimate bed-and-breakfast to life in their hometown.

Ryder is the hardest Montgomery brother to figure out - with a tough-as-nails outside and possibly nothing too soft underneath. He's surly and unsociable, but when he straps on a toolbelt, no woman can resist his sexy swagger. Except, apparently, Hope Beaumont, the innkeeper of his own Inn BoonsBoro...

As the former manager of a D.C. hotel, Hope is used to excitement and glamour, but that doesn't mean she can't appreciate the joys of small-town living. She's where she wants to be - except for in her love life. Her only interaction with the opposite sex has been sparring with the infuriating Ryder, who always seems to get under her skin. Still, no one can deny the electricity that crackles between them...a spark that ignited with a New Year's Eve kiss.

While the inn is running smoothly, thanks to Hope's experience and unerring instincts, her big-city past is about to make an unwelcome - and embarrassing - appearance. Seeing Hope vulnerable stirs up Ryder's emotions and makes him realize that while Hope may not be perfect, she just might be perfect for him...

This is the last book in the Inn Boonsboro Trilogy and it’s Ryder Montgomery’s book.  His heroine is Hope Beaumont…and of all of the books in this series, this was my favorite.

I’ll admit that the previous books were kind of slow going but it was this book that I was really looking forward to reading.  Ryder and Hope had some pretty intense sexual chemistry in the previous books and I just knew that their story was going to be the best of the bunch and I wasn’t wrong.

Ryder and Hope are opposites.  Ryder is a man’s man and Hope is pretty fancy in his eyes.  She’s Perfect Hope and he wouldn’t mind messing her up a little bit.  Hope is annoyed with herself for noticing Ryder as much as she does because well, he’s mean to her.  When things with the ghost in the inn pushes them together, they both seem to fall in line with the idea of being a couple and I liked that there wasn’t much fuss with the romance between Ryder and Hope.

I’ve been looking forward to reading this book since I first met Ryder and Hope in Beckett and Claire’s book.  These are the characters that brought me back to Owen and Avery’s book and when I finally got around to reading this one, I wasn’t disappointed with the story at all.  This book wraps up everything that we’ve been dealing with in the last two books.  Lizzie’s story is uncovered, the chemistry between Ryder and Hope burns bright and leaves you feeling like rainbows and cotton candy.

I really enjoyed getting to know both Ryder and Hope.  Ryder was everything I hoped he’d be and Hope was great.  Ryder was my favorite character in the entire series (even more than his Mom, who was great herself) and I really liked seeing him, getting to know him through his own thoughts and not through his brothers or his mother.

Of all of the girls, I liked Hope the best and I thought her story pulled out even more of her to like.  I loved the way that she was always there for everyone around her, I liked the way that she ran the hotel and I really liked the way that she came to love Ryder.  She was a great woman and she was perfect for Ryder and really, I just liked this book.

This was the perfect way to end the trilogy and it was an overall great story.  I’m so glad that I read it.

Grade: 4 out of 5

This book is available from Berkley Trade. You can buy it here or here in e-format. This book was provided by the publisher for an honest review.


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Review: Happy Ever After by Nora Roberts.

Posted November 8, 2010 by Rowena in Reviews | 5 Comments

Review: Happy Ever After by Nora Roberts.Reviewer: Rowena
Happy Ever After (Bride Quartet, #4) by Nora Roberts
Series: Bride Quartet #4
Also in this series: Vision in White (Bride Quartet, #1), Savor the Moment (Bride Quartet, #3)
Published by Berkley
Publication Date: November 2nd 2010
Pages: 333
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-half-stars

Dreams are realized in the eagerly-awaited fourth novel in Nora Roberts's Bride Quartet.

As the public face of Vows wedding planning company, Parker Brown has an uncanny knack for fulfilling every bride's vision. She just can't see where her own life is headed.

Mechanic Malcolm Kavanaugh loves figuring out how things work, and Parker is no exception. Both know that moving from minor flirtation to major hook-up is a serious step. Parker's business risks have always paid off, but now she'll have to take the chance of a lifetime with her heart...

This is where the party ends for the folks over at Vows. We’ve been through the ups and the downs with each of the four women in this quartet and the ride was great fun while it lasted. I’ve been very itchy about reading this book and when Holly finally sent that email out that she got this book for review, I was ready to duke it out with anyone who got in my way to this book (including Ames, =P).

We’ve seen Mac, Emma and Laurel all get their man and now it was Parker’s turn. The last man standing, the brain behind the whole operation and the glue that kept their tight knit group of friends together. It would have been so easy for Nora to write Parker as a total stiff but Parker didn’t come off that way at all to me. She’s from the Brown family and in their neck of the woods, that meant something but while Parker may have been very detail oriented and a total control freak, she wasn’t a beast.

This book played out exactly the way that I thought it would and while in some cases, that wouldn’t have worked for me but in this case, it totally did. I liked that it was predictable and that Mal was going to totally steamroll his way into Parker’s life whether she wanted him to or not and I enjoyed the ride.

I loved that these books were straight up contemporaries. I really enjoyed digging into a story about two characters that I have come to love as my own friends over the course of the series. Mal was a solid hero, one that I would totally bang again and again because he’s just hot stuff and I loved that he listens to The Killers. I have a very soft spot for Brandon Flowers. Ha!

Parker was Parker. Great at everything and did everything in 4 inch heels. She’s freaking Super Woman and I wanted to be her friend. I really liked the way we got to know both Parker and Mal. In Savor the Moment, I didn’t feel like Del got much page time and I would have liked to see more from him but in this book, Parker and Mal both got the kind of page time where I felt like I got to know the both of them equally and I really liked them both.

The thing about these books is they’re such fast reads. You read and read and read and then when the end comes, you’re surprised that you’re already there. It’s like being at a party that you don’t want to end and that’s how I felt with this one. I enjoyed this book and it’s probably my second favorite in the series, behind Jack and Emma’s book. Their book had it all for me and Jack still holds the trophy for my favorite hero in this entire series but Mal and Parker’s story was easy to fall into and when it all came to a close, I wasn’t ready to leave them behind so I’d say Roberts did a pretty decent job of writing this one.

Grade: 4.5 out of 5

The Bride Quartet

This book is available from Berkley Trade. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

four-half-stars


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