Tag: 1.5 Reviews

Review: Do You Take This Cop by Beth Andrews

Posted September 9, 2010 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Do You Take This Cop by Beth AndrewsReviewer: Holly
Do You Take This Cop? by Beth Andrews
Series: Serenity Springs #4
Also in this series: A Not-So-Perfect Past
Published by Harlequin
Publication Date: May 1st 2010
Genres: Fiction, Romance, General, Contemporary
Pages: 256
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
one-half-stars

Without the badge, he'd be perfect!
The last thing Faith Lewis needs is a cop poking his nose in her business. Okay, yes, Nick Coletti is gorgeous. And charming. And great with her son. But dating the town's most popular boy in blue is hardly going to help her keep a low profile. This guy could blow their world apart if he discovers her secret.
Funny thing is, he may also be her only hope. If she had someone like Nick on her side, maybe she could finally be free, and give her son the life he deserves. But trusting Nick means telling the whole truth about her past. He might protect them. Or he just might turn her in….

I’ve read novels by Andrews before and enjoyed them, but this one fell far off the mark for me.

I was liking the heroine of this book until she decided to manipulate the hero into caring for her because she needs protection. She’s on the run from an abusive husband and wants to settle herself and her son somewhere. I can understand that. But why not just tell him the truth and ask for help? You really think leading him on and lying is going to help your cause? The good news is that the hero is onto her. He knows she’s playing a game, he just isn’t sure what it is.Which is the whole reason I kept reading.

She also played the let’s pretend everything is okay, and it will be game a little too often for me. Pretending a problem doesn’t exist doesn’t make it go away. She was the type to stick her fingers in her ears and say ‘la la la la la la’. Her son greatly suffered because she refused to deal with her issues. Had it just been her, I might have been able to overlook this. Her son deserved better, though.

Which brings me to the next thing that I didn’t like about her, her skills as a mother. She expected her son to be perfect. He wasn’t allowed to make messes or play outside or be loud or..talk. Everything he did she scolded him for it. I can understand wanting your kids to behave, but she expected way too much from him.

I kept reading because of the hero. He was strong, caring and compassionate. He genuinely liked Faith and wanted to get to know her better. I thought it was sweet how he acted with her son. He really worked for me all the way up until the end. That’s when he stopped acting like a cop and started acting like a jerk who’d been scorned by a woman. It was so frustrating! He was the only reason I kept reading, and then he totally ruined it the last 1/8 of the book.

Up until that point he knew Faith was hiding a secret but wanted to let her work out telling him on her own. I can respect that. But when he shows up at her place to find her packing and realizes she knocked someone out and HID THE BODY, but does nothing about it, my head exploded.

Had the hero not turned TSTL at the end, I probably wouldn’t have disliked this book so much. As it stands, I can’t find much to recommend it.

1.5 out of 5 (the .5 is for the hero during the first half of the story and the kid..I liked him.)

The Series:
Not Without Her Family
His Perfect Match
A Not-So-Perfect Past
Do You Take This Cop

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

one-half-stars


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Review: The Bargain Bride by Barbara Metzger.

Posted January 14, 2010 by Rowena in Reviews | 7 Comments


Rowena’s review of The Bargain Bride by Barbara Metzger.

Hero: Persephone Goldwaite
Heroine: Kendall “West” Westmoreland

It was a match not made in heaven, but in pound notes-an arranged engagement between a girl of thirteen and a lord’s younger son. Since then, thirteen years have passed, and as her betrothed has been sowing his wild oats, Penny has grown up, grown impatient, and grown resentful. In fact, she’s vowed never to marry the man who blighted her life and destroyed her dreams. Viscount Westfield is happy enough to return the bridal dowry. But one look at Penny and Westfield knows he can never, ever let her go…

Barbara Metzger is a new to me author that I thought I’d try out to see if she’d be to my liking or not and while I didn’t think she was a bad writer, I couldn’t get excited about reading this book. The entire time that I was reading this book, I wanted to be reading something else. I’m in a historical reading frenzy and I thought this book would be a great one to keep the historical party going but unfortunately, this book fell flat on its face for me.

This book is about a hero and a heroine who were promised to each other by their father’s. Neither one of them asked for the arranged marriage but it was something that they each had to deal with sooner or later. The heroine, Penny had grown up thinking she was going to marry Kendall Westmoreland, a viscount from London but when she grew weary of waiting and started reading about his exploits in the newspaper, understandably she got pissed. She had every right to be pissed but her attitude in the book got to be too much. So much so that I began hating her with every page that I read.

Penny was written as a strong heroine. A heroine who knew her own mind and while I could respect a smart heroine, Penny was nothing but a smart mouth, mean tempered brat who got on my last frickin’ nerve. She had valid reasons for not liking West but when she first meets this guy, she socks him right in the face. She’s nothing but a common country bumpkin who is a banker’s daughter and he’s a viscount. A VISCOUNT and she punched him in the face. Are you kidding me? When would that ever happen back in those days? As the story progresses, Penny grows more and more bratty. She starts to fall for West’s charm and instead of making the best of her situation, she starts in on the revenge and then she starts in with her smart ass mouth who just doesn’t know when to give in and let shit go. She took things too far for my tastes and by the time she started to make amends, my dislike for her was so thorough that nothing she did would make me happy.

I just flat out did not like her.

Then there was West. I didn’t understand this guy. I mean, he comes to see his fiance after 13 years and first thing he wants to do is find a way out of the marriage. Okay, fine…but the very next day, he’s cornered into marrying the heroine and he’s okay with it. He’s more than okay with it because she’s pretty and she’s got pretty hair and he can’t wait to bed her. Okay, that could be the rake in him talking but I just didn’t buy his whole act. He likes his women with strong minds and not simpering little idiots who can’t think for themselves. He’s intrigued by his bride and he doesn’t mind wooing her into submission.

That would have been fine and dandy but to me, West came across as a doormat to Penny. She comes into his home and starts making demands and he lets her get away with it. He let her get away with far too many things and he annoyed me just as much as Penny did. Although, I did end up liking West way more than I liked Penny.

The secondary characters were interesting though I know I will forget them come next week. There just wasn’t much to recommend this book for me. The heroine was a spoiled beast and the hero came off kind of soft, the heroine’s father made me want to commit murder but the heroine’s grandfather was a likable fellow as was Marcel. But apart from those two, I just don’t think I have it in me to recommend this to anyone.

1.5 out of 5

This book is available from Signet Eclipse. You can buy it here.


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Guest Review: Caleb by Sarah McCarty

Posted October 29, 2009 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 8 Comments

Published by Berkley, PenguinGenres: Paranormal Romance


Lori’s review of Caleb by Sarah McCarty.

Meet three sexy ranchers-who also happen to be vampires-in the first of a new series by the national bestselling author of Wild Instinct.

Allie always desired mysterious, sexy rancher Caleb Johnson, but he never seemed to notice her. Until the night she’s attacked by a vicious animal, and rescued by a shapeshifting vampire that she almost seems to recognize: the baritone growl, the mesmerizing eyes, the inexplicable animal attraction. That’s because her savior is Caleb, and now he has no choice but to bring Allie into the shadows with him-to protect her from a rival werewolf pack, and to finally reveal his true feelings for the woman he’s been afraid to love.

I’ve long been a fan of Sarah McCarty. I adored the original Promises trilogy. They were the first erotic romances I ever read. If I didn’t love some of her other books, I can say that the one thing that McCarty has always done phenomenally well, even if the story didn’t work for me, is write characters. Her characters have always spoken to me. Loudly. Beautifully. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case with Caleb. Neither the story nor the characters worked for me.

In the past, I’ve always trusted McCarty to take me anywhere, even in a paranormal, which admittedly, has never been my favorite genre. That is no longer the case. I closed Caleb with a “been there, done that” feeling. Like this book offered nothing new. To either McCarty fans or to vampire fans.

In Caleb, McCarty uses every cliché there is to use with vampires. Every trick and trope she’s used in all of her books – the westerns and the paranormals – they’re in there. I felt as though I was reading a glossed over version of a McCarty hero without the depth and a mirror image of a McCarty heroine. Throw a few “son of a bitch”s in the mix (because all McCarty heroes must say that) and voila. And every McCarty hero threatens to paddle their heroines. All the time. But in past books, I’ve always truly felt that the threat came from a deep-seated fear for the heroine’s welfare, and huge relief at her eventual safety. Like when you want to swat your child after they ran into the street without looking, and you’re so relieved that they made it across safely. Here, instead, I honestly felt that it was just words taking up space on the page.

Caleb was supposed to be 250 years old, but Allie kept calling him “1860’s man” – as an endearment. That just bugged the ever-living crap out of me. At 250 years old, that would make him 1760’s man. Major blunder, and it took me out of the book every time she said it. I’d accept that Allie was just stupid, except that Caleb gave her his mother’s 250 year old wedding ring. From the 1800s, he noted to himself. Ugh.

There was no character depth; none at all. No history. Especially with Allie. And McCarty is usually fantastic with the characters, if nothing else. But they were totally flat. Even Caleb’s brothers, whom I assume are next in line for their own books, were flatter than an armadillo on the highway in Texas. And even more than that, I was completely squicked out by their admission that they were turned on by Allie. I didn’t find it sexy at all. Just the opposite. So I found the characters extremely lacking from an author who has always had A-1 characterization. And a piss-poor plot to back them up.

An unfortunate entry from McCarty.

1.5 out of 5

Read more from Lori at Living in the House of Testosterone and I Just Finished Reading…

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


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Christmas Gift Alert: Something Naughty for the Bad Boy in Your Life

Posted December 7, 2007 by Holly in Reviews | 5 Comments

Christmas Gift Alert: Something Naughty for the Bad Boy in Your LifeReviewer: Holly
Office Slave by J. W. McKenna
Series: Office Slave #1

Publication Date: August 19th 2005
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary
Pages: 295
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
one-star

The beautiful but haughty Ellen Sanchez thought she could get away with embezzling from Jack Sawyer, the powerful CEO of Sawyer Metalworking. When she was caught, she said she'd do "anything" to avoid going to jail. Anything turned out to be a new position for Ellen: Company sex slave.

The other day, I got to thinking about the difference between erotic romance written by men and erotic romance written by women. Some of the differences I’m sure are glaring, but others might not be, and I was curious. We all know men have been writing erotica for ages (hello Letters to Penthouse) but the market has recently been flooded with erotica written by women. I kind of wonder if men ever read it, but that’s a post for another day. Anyway, I decided to read a book written by a man that was marketed as “erotic romance” to see what I thought.

So I bought Office Slave by J.W. McKenna from eBookwise. As soon as I read the first chapter (which is available online) I knew it was written by a man. Don’t believe me? Well, read it yourself to see what I mean.

Anyway, in the name of research, I took one for the team (so to speak) and bought this book. I started reading it yesterday and finished it last night. It was…interesting. Let me run it down for you:

Ellen Sanchez was the CFO (Chief Financial Officer) for this company and she was embezzling money from them because her no good husband had been out of work for over a year. The owner of the company, Jack, finds out and says he’s going to turn her in to the cops. But she doesn’t want that to happen, so she says she’ll do ANYTHING to keep him from turning her in. He says, “Anything?” and she says, “Yes, anything”.

So he makes her the office sex slave. He tells her from now on she’s to do exactly what he says, when he says it. She’s not allowed to make any decisions for herself and she bascially has to be humilliated as the company slut.

He puts her in a glass fronted office and makes her sit at her desk (the desk that faces the glass so anyone who walks by can see her) naked. He installs cameras under her desk and tells her she’s no longer allowed to wear underwear, and she has to keep her legs spread open under her desk so he can see her through the camera at all times. When he calls her on the phone, she’s supposed to start rubbing herself and not stop until they hang up. He punishes her when she doesn’t follow one of his rules. Sometimes he spanks her with his belt when she’s naughty and he made her get her nipples pierced and her clit pierced.

In order to pay back her debt, she had to screw whoever he says. So she screwed or blew all his clients and the lunch delivery guy and the limo driver and even the girls in the office. He called it the new company “incentive” program and she was the prize to whoever did the best.

They called her “Slut” or “El”, which by the end of the book were interchangeable to her. Every time she went into his office (the boss) no matter who was in there, she had to remove all her clothes, kneel on the floor in front of his desk with her legs spread as far as possible and say, “How may I serve you today, Master?” And while she was kneeling there, he’d either rub her breasts or play with her clit, but never let her cum.

In less than 12 months, she paid back her debt in full, which is quite an accomplishment, considering she got $100 for each blowjob and $250 for every screw. Do the math and on that and tell me you aren’t scared. Yes, she screwed enough people to pay off a $257,000 debt. So he said he’d release her from her duty, but by then she begged her “master” not to let her go. Basically, every man’s fantasy. A woman who doesn’t want to think about or do anything beyond spreading her legs for whomever wants her. Oh, and she was named “Employee of the Month” 12 months running. Which is when I realized this isn’t the awful, sexist, chauvinistic, ridiculous farce of a novel I thought it was, but instead it’s a joke. Ha ha ha ha ha.

So, I’m offering this up as my latest “Christmas Gift Alert” because I have a feeling most men will want a copy of this. Why not surprise the man in your life with something untraditional this year?

I’m giving it:

1.5 out of 5 for the story
and
4.5 out of 5 for the sheer entertainment value it offered.

You can buy it here or at Amazon for the Kindle here.

And BONUS, there’s a sequel. Office Slave II: El Exposed

Dude, I’m so buying that. Be kind to the main man in your life and buy him both. I doubt you’ll regret it. And if you think he won’t like it, check out the Amazon reviews…I’m telling you, the men will love it.

PS. Yes, I’m pretty sure that’s her butt.

one-star


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