Publisher: Silhouette

Retro Review: Craving Beauty by Nalini Singh

Posted May 3, 2017 by Casee in Reviews | 6 Comments

Retro Review: Craving Beauty by Nalini SinghReviewer: Casee
Craving Beauty by Nalini Singh
Series: Zulheina #2
Published by Silhouette
Publication Date: July 1st 2005
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 184
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four-half-stars

Marc was dangerous to her in the way that only a strong, sexy male could be to a woman. Even knowing that, she'd agreed to marry him.

Hope blossomed in Hira's heart. Perhaps she'd married a man with whom it might be worth building a life. Her mother had worried that he was scarred, but the lines on his face did nothing to lessen his raw masculine appeal. If anything, they gave him an even more dangerous male air, enticing the feminine core of her to thoughts that shocked her.

What did a man's face matter anyway? She had no use for handsome men.

But for a man with a heart? For such a man...she might risk everything.

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

This review was originally posted on October 5, 2007.

Harlequins are one of my favorite guilty pleasures. I love how I can pick up a book that is less than 200 pages long and be completely immersed in the story almost immediately.

Though I’m a huge Nalini Singh fan, this is only the 2nd series romance I’ve read by her. This book makes me want to run out and hunt down the rest of her OOP Silhouettes.

When Marc went to Zulheil on business, he never expected to return home w/ a foreign bride. From the first moment he laid eyes on Hira, he was captivated not only by her flawless beauty, but also her smile. When given a choice between being married and having her as his own or not having her at all, Marc did not hesitate.

Hira was used to being looked at as nothing more than a pretty face. When she first saw Marc, she hoped that he was different and would see her as the intelligent and capable woman that she was. Unfortunately that was not to be and Hira soon found herself married to Marc and leaving the only home she’d ever known.

It sounds like a simple enough plot, no? In a way, it was. There was no BIG MISUNDERSTANDING in this book. Both Hira and Marc agreed to the marriage for reasons that were not at first clear to them. Marc soon learns that his wife is far from the icy beauty he first assumed her to be. However, having been burned once by a beautiful woman, Marc has no desire to repeat the experience. Under Marc’s loving care (doesn’t that sound all Harlequin-ey?), Hira realizes that not all men are controlling tyrants like her father. Given freedom to pursue her own desires, Hira finds herself falling in love with her husband more as each day passes.

As in every romance novel, there is conflict between the characters. These are two very strong willed people who have been hurt in the past. Marc by a woman and Hira by watching how her father treated her mother. This is a classic story of the Beast trying to tame his Beauty, soon learning that taming is the last thing he wants of his wife. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone that can find it.

4.5 out of 5.

four-half-stars

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Guest Reviews up at TGTBTU

Posted November 8, 2009 by Holly in Reviews | 2 Comments

Guest Reviews up at TGTBTUReviewer: Holly
The Daddy Audition by Cindi Myers
Published by Harlequin
Publication Date: July 1st 2009
Genres: Fiction, Romance, General, Contemporary
Pages: 224
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two-stars

Tanya Bledso couldn't wait to leave Crested Butte to chase dreams of Hollywood stardom. Now the single mom has returned to run the local theater and raise her daughter. But the peaceful, charming town she took for granted has exploded into a bustling tourist attraction, thanks to one man.
Jack Crenshaw. Property developer extraordinaire…and her former high school sweetheart.
Ten years hasn't cooled the heat between them. Worse, Jack is bonding with her daughter and giving her the crazy idea he'd make the perfect family man. But is he ready to forgive and forget the heartbreak of the past for the role he seems born to play?

I have three reviews up at The Good, The Bad and The Unread.

The Daddy Audition by Cindi Myers

Tanya Bledso couldn’t wait to leave Crested Butte to chase dreams of Hollywood stardom. Now the single mom has returned to run the local theater and raise her daughter. But the peaceful, charming town she took for granted has exploded into a bustling tourist attraction, thanks to one man.Jack Crenshaw. Property developer extraordinaire…and her former high school sweetheart.

Ten years hasn’t cooled the heat between them. Worse, Jack is bonding with her daughter and giving her the crazy idea he’d make the perfect family man. But is he ready to forgive and forget the heartbreak of the past for the role he seems born to play?

 

I enjoyed the basic premise of this story: heroine leaves to pursue her dreams and leaves high school sweetheart behind. Now she’s back and so is their attraction.

I liked both characters up until a certain point, but then the way they refused to talk to each other and their personal insecurities started to annoy me. I understood Tanya’s reasons for leaving, just as I understood Jack’s for letting her. But as the story progressed, I became frustrated with both of them.

 

3.5 out of 5

This book is available from Harlequin American Romance. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

Book CoverTaming the Texas Tycoon by Katherine Garbera

For Texas Cattleman’s Club member Lance Brody, marriage is about gaining the right connections. But one plain-Jane personal assistant is about to change his mind…For years Kate Thornton had dreamed of becoming Mrs. Lance Brody. Then her boss became engaged strictly for business and Kate had had enough. Giving her two weeks’ notice should have released her, but Lance’s eyes had finally been opened. Kate couldn’t be allowed to walk away from the business, or him. And if it meant taking her to bed to keep her…well, that was one job he would gladly do himself!

I liked this story on a superficial level. If I start examining the motives or actions of the main characters I have major issues. As a fluff story – something quick to pass the time – it was good, but there were a lot of flaws.

My main gripe is the heroine’s complete lack of identity away from the hero. Also, the fact that the hero was engaged to someone else for the entire length of the novel really turned me off, even though the circumstances were explained well enough.

2.5 out of 5

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

Book CoverTexas Wedding by Kathleen O’Brien

The days of Susannah Everly dreaming about white dresses, churches and Trent Maxwell are long gone. So it’s more than a little funny that she finds herself actually married to the guy. But she’s determined to save the family ranch by any means possible, and if Trent is those means…Still, they both know the deal. This is a business arrangement and there are rules. Rules that do not include rekindling those old feelings or surprise midnight seductions. So what’s Susannah to do when Trent seems determined to break their agreement? Especially when what he offers is way too tempting.

I’m still formulating my thoughts about this one. I generally enjoy the reunited lovers plot line, but this couple was bitter and angry.

Susannah especially rubbed me wrong. She was bitter and angry, and her actions throughout didn’t speak well of her. She did her level best to treat Trent like shit, then complained when he didn’t fall all over her. Basically she was a complete and total bitch. This was explained away because of Trent’s actions in the past, but that was 11 years ago. I really felt like there should have been more growth on her part.

2 out of 5

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

two-stars

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Guest Review: Inherited: One Child by Day Leclaire

Posted September 30, 2009 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Guest Review: Inherited: One Child by Day LeclaireInherited: One Child by Day Leclaire
Published by Silhouette
Publication Date: July 1st 2009
Genres: Fiction, Romance, General, Contemporary
Pages: 192
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four-stars

Billionaire businessman Jack Mason had devised the perfect strategy for keeping custody of his orphaned niece. He'd hire the right nanny and seduce her into marrying him. It should prove easy enough. He was, after all, irresistible.
Annalise Stefano was ideal. The attractive new nanny had quickly bonded with the little girl. And Jack was anticipating their wedding night more than he'd imagined. Even so, he couldn't have predicted that Annalise wouldn't want to become his wife. Or that the secret she was keeping could jeopardize his plans for creating the perfect family….

 

I have a review of Inherited: One Child by Day Leclaire up at The Good, The Bad and The Unread

I’m always looking for new authors to try when I browse eHarlequin.com and the blurb for this one caught my eye. I’m glad I picked it up, because it turned out to be a good read. This story is told almost completely from the hero’s point of view. That was kind of refreshing. Too often I think we spend too much time in the heroine’s head speculating about the hero.

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

four-stars

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Guest Review: The Magnate’s Make-Believe Mistress by Bronwyn Jameson

Posted September 17, 2009 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: The Magnate’s Make-Believe Mistress by Bronwyn JamesonReviewer: Holly
Magnate's Make-Believe Mistress by Bronwyn Jameson
Published by Silhouette
Publication Date: 2009
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary
Pages: 186
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four-stars

Her new client was devilishly handsome, superbly charming…and absolutely hiding something. Why else would a man as rich and powerful as Cristo Verón have any interest in the cleaning services of lowly Isabelle Browne? Her suspicions were confirmed when she discovered his real reason for hiring her. And suddenly, she was agreeing to a preposterous proposition….
Cristo would protect his family at any cost—and keeping Isabelle close was key to his plan. Having her pose as his make-believe mistress was step one. But he hadn't counted on wanting to make the pretense a reality.

I have a review of Magnate’s Make-Believe Mistress by Bronwyn Jameson up at The Good, The Bad and The Unread

I don’t believe I’ve read many (if any) book by Bronwyn Jameson before. The name sounds familiar, but I’m not sure if that’s because I’ve heard it from others (most likely Wendy) or from my own experience. Either way, I’ll be looking for more in the future.

I wasn’t sure about Isabelle when the story first opened, but I was won over as we learned more about her. She seemed kind of wishy-washy at first, but it wasn’t long before we were given more insight into her character. I like that she was a family-oriented person and wasn’t willing to compromise herself or her morals for anyone. That really showed strength.

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

four-stars

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Guest Review: The Doctor’s Surprise Family by Mary J. Forbes

Posted August 27, 2009 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: The Doctor’s Surprise Family by Mary J. ForbesReviewer: Holly
The Doctor's Surprise Family by Mary J. Forbes
Published by Silhouette
Publication Date: May 1st 2009
Genres: Fiction, Romance, General, Contemporary
Pages: 224
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two-stars

When Kat O'Brien saw the rain-soaked stranger pull up on his motorcycle, her instincts went on red-alert. Except he was no stranger. He was Dane Rainhart, hometown war hero…and Kat's girlhood crush. Now the single mother was more intrigued than ever by this sexy, powerful man who was already bonding with her son.
After being wounded in the line of duty, Dane needed a place to mend—and hide away from the world. Instead, the haunted military doctor was falling for the much-too-attractive widow and her boy. Perhaps it was time they both faced the past and took a second chance at happiness—together!

I generally like the ‘reunited lovers’ plot line. Especially if the lovers in question were high school sweethearts. This is the third book in Forbes’ Home to Firewood Island series. I read the first two books and enjoyed them, so I figured I’d like this one as well. Sadly it didn’t work very well for me.

I expected to like Kat based on her character in the previous books. Unfortunately she didn’t live up to my expectations. She started out strong – though wounded by the loss of her husband – and seemed to just kind of fade out the more attached she became to Dane. I was surprised at her lack of backbone when it came to standing up to Dane. There were several times where I thought he needed to be taken down a peg in regards to her son, or where she needed to push him on the issue of his past and/or their relationship, and she failed. Instead of coming across as strong, it was more like she needed a man to make her complete.

…read the rest here.

This book is available from Silhouette Special Edition. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

two-stars

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