Search Results for: label/Tracy's Reviews

Guest Review: Duchess of Sin by Laurel McKee

Posted November 30, 2010 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 0 Comments

Tracy’s review of Duchess of Sin (Daughters of Erin #2) by Laurel McKee.

Blonde and beautiful Lady Anna Blacknall is in the mood for mischief. Entering Dublin’s most notorious den of vice, she finds herself in the arms of a mysterious, emerald-eyed Irishman. And although he is masked, his tender kiss is hauntingly familiar.

Conlan McTeer, Duke of Adair, has come to Dublin to fight for a free Ireland. But he’s suddenly reunited with the young Englishwoman who had once claimed his heart, and his passion turns from politics to pleasure. When their sizzling encounter brings danger to Anna’s door, she must decide where her loyalties lie-and quickly. For someone will do whatever it takes to destroy Conlan . . . and anyone he dares to love.

Anna is the daughter of an Earl. She’s been trained in deportment, dancing, music and of course will be the perfect hostess when she becomes a wife and has a house of her own. But Anna is decidedly unhappy. Not that she doesn’t appreciate what she has in life, but she’s tired of the hollow feeling that’s inside her with no idea how to fill it. Everyone around her thinks that she’s this vapid woman when really she hides quite an intelligent person under the whole façade.

When she sneaks out of her house and goes to a private club with a friend she meets the one man who has ever made her feel. He is the Duke of Adair but he is not just a pretty face. Conlan McTeer is a fighter. He fights for himself, for the tenants on his land and he fights for Ireland. He has to do this all under cover but he works quite hard, and stealthily, against the union debate of 1799. Anna had met Conlan two years prior, in a stable, during the uprising in 1798 and she had never forgotten him.

After the initial meeting at the club the pair can’t stay away from each other. She sought him out and he loved it. The two felt so comfortable together but there was always tension due to politics lurking in the background. But Anna was expected to marry an English Lord and the one that was looking to marry her was none other that Conlan’s cousin Grant, and there was no love lost between the two men. Anna must make a decision for her future, but will she choose duty or love?

I have to say that I very much enjoyed the relationship between Conlan and Anna. Though their meetings were mostly on the down low they managed to really spend quality time together. They would talk and yes, have sex, but it was so sweet and romantic that never once did I think that they shouldn’t be together. It was more a case of “I know I shouldn’t be here but I just love being with you so much that I just can’t help myself” and I loved that!

Now I have to admit that I was not familiar with the whole Irish plight back in the 1700’s so that did throw me off a bit at first, but the story was told in such a way that you really didn’t need to know all of the history to enjoy the book.

I only had a couple of niggles with the book:
* I never found out how old Conlan was. Anna’s 18 and he didn’t’ seem that old, but really, how can you tell in books unless they give you a telltale sign? IDK
* The initial meeting between Conlan and Anna was mentioned more than a few times but we never found out exactly what happened back then. I still have no idea what went on in the stable two years prior to this book. I would have liked to have gotten a bit more information about that initial meeting but I guess I’ll have to read book 1 and jut find out for myself.

During the book there was also a small side love story between Anna’s mother, Katherine, and the drawing teacher, Nicolas, that had been hired for Anna’s sister. It was not played up too much but it was very sweet.

Overall I really liked this book. I will definitely be reading the next book in this series when it releases.

Rating: 4 out of 5

This book is available from Grand Central Publishing. You can buy it here.

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’s Place.

The series:

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Guest Review: Shattered Glass by AC Katt

Posted November 27, 2010 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 0 Comments

Tracy’s review of Shattered Glass by AC Katt

Milo grew up in fear, hiding the fact that he was gay. Becoming a rock star with his band Shattered Glass was a dream come true. Finally lovers with Liam, the friend he’d desired since childhood, Milo worries about his image and keeping their relationship a secret.

Liam knew he loved Milo, even as a kid. But their fame and fortune can’t buy him the happiness of talking Milo out of the closet, able to freely express their love. Unfortunately, a fellow band-mate with vengeance on his mind conspires to break the lovers up in the most vicious way possible, destroying the couple’s relationship and shredding Liam’s peace of mind.

Six years later, Liam is older, wiser, and has rebuilt his life after the devastating loss of Milo and the band. Forced into a tenuous working reunion, Liam knows his heart still belongs to Milo. Working together to uncover the web of lies that pulled them apart, now all they have to do is survive the psychopath intent on silencing Liam and his music forever.

At the age of 12 Milo finally came out to his best friend, Sam, and told him he was gay. But Milo’s father was an abuser so the truth of that fact had to remain between the two of them. Shortly after Milo’s announcement, he and Sam met a lady and her son moving into the neighborhood. Lily and Liam became great friends of both Milo’s and Sam’s with Milo knowing, almost instinctively, that Liam was gay as well – even though Liam was only 6. The older boys decide that they need to protect Liam from the harshness of the world and they succeed. But besides being Liam’s friend and protector, Milo grows to have feelings for Liam over the years but is determined to not act on them until Liam is an adult.

Fast forward 6 years: Milo, Sam and Sam’s brother Rick are forming a band, Shattered Glass. They can’t keep a lead singer to save their souls when Liam steps up. They scoff at him for thinking that a 12 year old could sing but when he performs for them they are stunned. He has a beautiful voice and is extremely talented. The band moves on to become mega rock stars and when Liam turns 18 Milo finally can tell and show him how he feels about him. All is rainbows and butterflies until a member of the band, who is set on revenge starts to add his poison into the mix. He drives Milo and Liam, as well as brothers Sam and Rick, apart in the worst possible way. It’s not until 6 years after that, being apart completely, that Milo and Liam have their chance to come together and try to make amends as well as heal their wounded hearts and lives.

This is a heavy, heavy, heavy emotional read. Not for the faint at heart. The crap that the band endured – through no fault of their own, as well as that of Bart, the instigator – was horrifying and disturbing. There was love, but there was no trust in any of their relationships – whether it was brotherly, sexual or friendship. My problem with the book, besides the massive lack of trust in everyone was that I never got enmeshed in the characters enough to care. When it came to the 2 main characters and their love I didn’t want them to get back together. Yes, they each needed closure but I found myself wanting them to stay apart because of all of the hurt that had been handed out…especially on Milo’s part – and that’s not how a romance should make me feel. Also, I found the speech patterns in the book odd and a little too…over the top in a soap opera kind of way. A few too many “oh, my love”’s and “yes, my beloved”’s for my personal tastes. It actually felt like I was reading a 80’s historical at times – particularly during sex scenes.

In the end everything and everyone was forgiven, and I do mean everything. I found it a bit too tidy and perfect. I felt that as realistic as the author was trying to make the entire story the ending should have been held up to the same standard. It was almost an easy way out and I personally didn’t care for it.

Rating: 2 out of 5

This book is available from Captiva Press. You can buy it here in e-format.

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’s Place

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Guest Review: Sparring Partners by Leigh Morgan

Posted November 21, 2010 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 0 Comments

Tracy’s review of Sparring Partners (Dojo Chronicles) by Leigh Morgan.

What if everything you always thought you wanted could be yours simply by saying “I do”? Billionaire Jordon Bennett needs to find a wife, now, to secure his position as CEO of B.H. Holdings. Reed Mohr could use a miracle to help pay for her alternative elder care facility, Potters Woods. Inside and out of the dojo, can these two survive sparring with each other?

Reed Mohr knows all about having to make sacrifices. When her job as a child advocate lead her to the decision to adopt one of the children, 14 year old Jesse Bane, from foster care she gave up her job and had to get married. Ok, she married her gay best friend so as not to actually have to have a real marriage, but giving up her job was pretty life changing.

Two years later: When Jordan Bennett is told by his uncle that he must get married within 72 hours…to a “real” woman in order to secure his future position as CEO of his uncle’s company, Jordan is stunned. He only dates models and actresses, how the heck is he going to find a real woman in 72 hours, get her to marry him and make her love him within 30 days? Impossible! Then he meets Reed at a museum and within 24 hours they’re married.

Neither of the two people expects their lives to change as drastically as they do. Reed is pissed off at Jordan for so many reasons, but she can’t seem to stop herself from being attracted to him – not just physically, but emotionally as well – because he’s a nice person. Jordan finds himself moved into Reed’s home, Potters Woods, with her, shall we say, eclectic family, and he’s not quite sure which end is up. He does know that he’s falling for Reed and her crazy family and really enjoying himself.

In the end Jordan has to figure out how to live his life and be happy, which he is with Reed and her family. But when he’s with his uncle and business associates he’s a complete ass and treats Reed like dirt. I have to say that I really didn’t like Jordan for a long time in this book but he definitely redeemed himself by the end. For Reed’s part she had to discover who she could be with Jordan as her husband as well as the world that he comes from – and that was just not an easy task.

This is a good book about love, family and self-discovery. It has some very touching moments in it that were quite moving – first between Jordan and an very aged resident of Potters Woods and then with Reed’s son Jesse. Leigh Morgan really knows how to do those tender moments well.

Overall an entertaining read.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5.

This book is available from Amazon Digital Services. You can buy it here in e-format.

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’s Place.

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Guest Review: Happily Ever After by Nora Roberts

Posted November 17, 2010 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 3 Comments

Tracy‘s review of Happily Ever After (Bride Quartet #4) by Nora Roberts

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.

While the blurb for this book really had me thinking that this book was mainly about Malcolm and Parker’s romance I don’t think that was really the gist of the book. There was definitely a romance between those two in the book but to my thinking it really wasn’t the focal point of the book.

Parker had met Malcolm prior and had shared a kiss with him at one point. I think for Malcolm he had really wanted to date Parker right from the start but hadn’t really pursued anything with her until this book began. He finally got tired of waiting and decided to make his move. Despite the ice vibes that Parker was giving off he planted one on her and made her lose her mind. He then asks her out and strangely enough she has a really great time. The two start a sexual relationship and from what I can gather Malcolm stayed at her home most every night – until they had a disagreement. You see, Malcolm had a hard childhood and not great adulthood until he decided to take charge of it and make it better. But he’s not that willing to let Parker into the history part of his life and she’s pretty much tired of skirting issues with him and not pushing. To my thinking the majority of the relationship that was told was them having issues with each other rather than showing us the great and probably romantic times that they had.

What we got instead is a huge view into the relationships that Parker had with her 3 close friends and their fiance’s. Was this a bad thing? I didn’t think so. I really enjoyed seeing Parker open up to the people in her life and frankly it brought me to tears more than once. Do I wish we could have seen more of Malcolm and Parker in their quiet, romantic moments? Sure, but I was more than happy with what we got. In the end I thought that the outpouring of Malcolm’s heart to Parker was quite touching and made me forgive a lot of the rest that I didn’t see between the two.

I thought this was a good conclusion to the Bride Quartet series but it was more of a friendship based book with a romance in it rather than a romance that had friendship within. Not that that’s a bad thing – I just want you to be prepared if you haven’t read it already.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’ Place.

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Guest Review: Quarterback Blitz by Frances Stockton

Posted November 2, 2010 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 1 Comment

Tracy‘s review of Quarterback Blitz by Frances Stockton

All Anna wants for her fortieth birthday is a ladies night out. Her plans are stalled when she ends up stuck in her griffin costume. The mascot for the Alexandria Griffins, she never expects to be rescued by the star of her midnight fantasies, quarterback Kyran Black. Called “The Rebel” by the press because of his long hair, tattoos and playboy stats off the field, he’s everything Anna should avoid. Kyran is gorgeous and irresistible and he suggests they celebrate her birthday together. Certain she’s too old for him, she agrees to one night. Kyran’s charm and dominance in bed blitz Anna’s defenses, teaching her things about sex she never thought she’d experience. But when their one-night stand turns into a relationship, his bad-boy past comes back to threaten their future.

Anna is a PE teacher in Maryland and an assistant boys football coach. For extra savings, for her eventual retirement, she works as the Griffin Football team as their mascot. On her 40th birthday she plans on spending the evening with her friends at a male strip joint. All of her plans come to a halt when she can’t manage to get her mascot uniform off. Luckily for her Kyran Black – 2nd string quarterback for the Griffins – comes into the locker room and helps her out. But that’s not why Kyran is in the locker room. He’s there to see Anna (as well as to get away from a ferocious reporter). Kyran and Anna had one date months before and though Kyran was excited to see where their relationship would head next, Anna gave him a false number when he asked, and the two hadn’t spoken since. Kyran had wanted to use his contacts to hunt Anna down but felt that it would scare her off. He was tired of waiting for her to come to him so now was his second chance to get Anna James right where he wanted her.

You see, Kyran may be only 30 years old but the man knows what he wants – and that’s Anna. Not only in his bed but in his life for a darned long time. Anna has reservations about the age difference but Kyran soon manages to alleviate her concerns and the two start to fall in love. But Anna’s ex-fiance, Kyran’s psycho ex-girlfriend, and what seems like a myriad of reporters are out to see that the couple is broken up and they will do whatever they have to to see it them split for good.

This is a fun older woman/younger man story. While I thought that there would be more angst because of the age difference, Kyran really nipped that in the bud early on and convinced Anna that they were good together and that their ages didn’t matter to him, so why should they matter to Anna. I liked seeing Kyran so strong in his belief that it would work. For such a young man he really had his head on straight. That, of course, didn’t stop him from being an animal in bed and he showed Ann, quite few times, what there was between the two of them sexually. Ms. Stockton has a vivid sexual imagination and it made for some steamy sex scenes.

Kyran wasn’t always the level-headed guy he was in curerntly though and his past caught up with him. The story had quite an interesting and pretty complicated side story going on during the romance. Explicit photos being taken o f Kyran and then Anna, heated phone calls to Anna’s Superintendent of Education had the possibility of ruining their relationship but the two kept firm in their trust in one another. That was one major aspect of the story that I really liked. While all the trash was being thrown around them the couple stayed strong. Not something you see every day – or in every book. Others trying to create doubt usually makes for trust issues but Anna and Kyran make it through.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

This book is available from Ellora’s Cave. You can buy it here in e-format.

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’s Place

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