Tag: 3.0 Reviews

Guest Review: Scotland or Bust by Kira Archer

Posted June 20, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Scotland or Bust by Kira ArcherReviewer: Tracy
Scotland or Bust by Kira Archer
Published by Entangled: Indulgence
Publication Date: June 11, 2018
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 220
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
three-stars

After dumping her boyfriend, Nicole Franklin impulsively jumps on a plane and heads to Europe. Sure, money and a job would have been nice to line up first. Even a visa, for that matter. So now she has to play tour guide at an Outlander experience for the most obnoxious man on the planet. Until she stumbles into the wrong bed in the middle of the night and wakes up in Harrison’s arms. Now his family thinks they’re engaged, and the entire village is betting on how long before she’ll be running for the hills.

Harrison Troy has a reputation in the town for burning through assistants. And the bubbly new one he’s just hired is likely no different. But his family quickly has them “engaged.” He should be upset, but she’s the perfect buffer for his interfering family. She says she doesn’t need another man in her life--even if he comes with a castle--and that’s fine with him. So why can’t he stop thinking about the woman who is charming everyone in the town, and maybe even him?

After dumping her boyfriend and quitting her accounting job, Nicole decides to finally take the trip to Europe her boyfriend had promise her – by herself. She buys a first-class one-way ticket to England and decides that she’s going to get a job and be an independent woman.  She is seatmates with Harrison Troy, a stuffed shirt that’s incredibly hot.  Nicole’s a talker and Harrison just wants to be left alone but Nic won’t let him be.  She even makes out with him upon lift off because she can see how anxiety ridden he is.

When the finally land Harrison finds out his assistant has quit and as he knows that Nicole has no job or place to stay, he offers her the position.  She takes the job and they head to his family’s ancestral home.  The home will be the first stop in the Outlander “experience” that Harrison has created in order to try to save his family’s dying travel business.  He’s a billionaire and really wants nothing to do with anything related to “the book and show that must not be named” but he loves his quirky family (despite not wanting to spend all that much time with them).

Because of a bedroom snafu Harrison’s family thinks that Nicole and Harrison are engaged which puts a bit of a strain on things.  Nicole’s a wonderful assistant but Harrison can’t seem to keep his hands off her.

I liked most of the characters in the story – the people of the village in the pub were funny, the friends who came to visit Harrison were great, the quirky/crazy family was even charming.  I liked Harrison although I thought he was a bit too stuffy, even near the end of the book (although he did loosen up some).  Nicole was cute at times but other times she made me nuts.  She just bought a one-way ticket but didn’t have anywhere to stay, hardly any money and just thought she’d get an under the table job and work her way around.  I guess there are people in the world who would do that, but Nicole didn’t seem the type at all.

The romance itself felt rushed.  It seemed as if Harrison and Nicole were just starting to explore their attraction and then boom! they were supposedly madly in love. What? I liked the part where Harrison was professing his love, it was very sweet, but where the heck did it come from?  The build-up of the relationship needed a lot more to it then what it was in order for me to believe these two were going to live happily ever after.

There were definitely parts that ha me rolling my eyes but overall I thought it was a cute book.

Rating: 3 out of 5

three-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Guest Review: Tank by Erin Bevan

Posted June 19, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Tank by Erin BevanReviewer: Tracy
Tank (Black and Blue #1) by Erin Bevan
Series: Black and Blue #1
Published by Erin Bevan
Publication Date: May 17, 2017
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 407
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
three-stars

Tyler Wilde moves to Black Widow, Texas, to join the Blue Guardians, a local biker club that helps abused women and children. He's intent on starting his life over, but a small piece of his past collides with his present when he runs into the local waitress, Annie Carter.

Annie’s the girl of his boyhood dreams, and Tyler can’t wait to get reacquainted with her. Only problem is, Annie’s engaged. But what has Tyler more troubled than the diamond on her finger is the bruise that graces her arm. To make matters worse, Annie’s abuser and intended husband is also the town’s Chief of Police.

Tyler is determined to offer Annie a safe haven, but she refuses his help until her life is hanging by a thread.

When Tyler Wilde’s grandfather dies and leaves him his home in Black Widow, Texas, he decides to move there.  He spent summers there for many years and the place holds wonderfully fond memories for him.  He’s also been told that there is a group/biker club that helps abused women and children and he wants to join.

After a couple of weeks of living in Black Widow Tyler heads to the local diner to get donuts for his co-workers and runs into Annie.  They realize after talking that she was the little girl across the river that he taught to skip rocks one summer.  Tyler can tell almost immediately that Annie is trying to hide signs of abuse.

Tyler becomes a prospect in the Blue Guardians and earns the name Tank due to his size.  They end up helping Annie try to get away from her fiancé, permanently.  Unfortunately her fiancé is a cop and a well-respected man in the community – no one knows what a monster he is.  While Annie stays at Tank’s house her friendship with him turns deeper and they both realize they have feelings for each other.  Annie, however, doesn’t know if she can trust any man after what she’s been through.

This is my first read by this author.  I was intrigued by the concept of an MC created to help abused women and children.  It was a good concept and one I enjoyed reading about.  Tank had been abused as a boy and he was still, even as an adult, working through his issues.  Because of his background he was especially good with children who’d been abused and I loved that the author gave him a soft heart due to his past.

Annie was a trooper.  Seriously – that woman had gone through hell and just couldn’t figure out how to extricate herself from the situation.  I was happy that she finally took Tank up on his offer of protection and that the Blue Guardians stepped in as well.

Despite my enjoyment of the Blue Guardians the story did lag at times and I found it a struggle to not skip pages/skim.  There were also some things that happened in the book that had my eyes rolling because the characters were so gullible.  In the end I found that I liked about half of the book and found the other half just ok.

Rating: 3 out of 5

three-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Throwback Thursday Review: Moonlight Road by Robyn Carr

Posted June 14, 2018 by Casee in Reviews | 4 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Moonlight Road by Robyn CarrReviewer: Casee
Moonlight Road by Robyn Carr
Series: Virgin River #10
Also in this series: Virgin River, Whispering Rock, Virgin River, A Virgin River Christmas, Second Chance Pass, Second Chance Pass, Second Chance Pass, Temptation Ridge, Paradise Valley, Forbidden Falls, Forbidden Falls, Angel's Peak, Forbidden Falls, Promise Canyon, Wild Man Creek, Promise Canyon, Harvest Moon, Bring Me Home for Christmas, Redwood Bend, Sunrise Point, Shelter Mountain, Moonlight Road
Published by MIRA
Publication Date: March 2, 2010
Point-of-View: Third Person
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 409
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
three-stars

WITH HER BELOVED YOUNGER SIBLINGS SETTLED AND HAPPY, ERIN FOLEY HAS EMPTY NEST SYNDROME. AT AGE THIRTY-FIVE.

So she's hitting the pause button on her life and holing up in a secluded (but totally upgraded --- she's not into roughing it!) cabin near Virgin River. Erin is planning on getting to know herself ... not the shaggy-haired mountain man she meets.

In fact, beneath his faded fatigues and bushy beard, Aiden Riordan is a doctor, recharging for a summer after leaving the navy. He's intrigued by the pretty, slightly snooty refugee from the rat race --- her meditating and journaling are definitely keeping him at arm's length. He'd love to get closer ... if his scruffy exterior and crazy ex-wife don't hold him back.

But maybe it's something in the water --- unlikely romances seem to take root in Virgin River ... helped along by some well-intentioned meddling, of course.

Reading last week’s Throwback review got me all nostalgic. I started reading all the old Virgin River reviews when I came across my review of Moonlight Road. Last week’s review and this review are so different that I had to share. For real though, what happened to this series?

This review was originally posted on March 16, 2010.

This commenter had it right. The Virgin River books are starting to read more like women’s health manuals for the premenopausal (and even post menopausal) than real romance. There is actually a scene between Mel and Jack where Jack tells her that HE misses HER periods. Why? Because having sex with her during her period was a turn-on. You know, he could show her that he wants her no matter what. SERIOUSLY. What man says that? Even Jack—my favorite VR hero—shouldn’t be able to get away with that. Because men don’t say that. Do they?

I really liked Aiden and Erin. Their initial meeting had me laughing. From each of their perspectives, it’s clear that they both have the wrong impression. Aiden thinks that Erin is an ice queen (i.e. bitch). Erin thinks that Aiden is a homeless bum. As they get to know each other, Erin slowly realizes that Aiden is far from a bum. The Virgin River books tend to move slow. I liken it to life in Virgin River. Nothing ever comes quickly. So it’s over several weeks/months that Aiden and Erin start getting to know each other.

Aiden had been married about eight years ago and for three months. He’s horrified when it’s crazy ex turns up at his family’s place in Virgin River acting like she wants to get back together. The ex is pretending that she wants him back even though Aiden knows it’s a crock of crap. Still, she has a way of making the situation turn in her favor. Then she goes to visit Erin and feeds her a bunch of lies about Aiden.

That’s when it started falling apart for me. Erin knows Aiden, she’s even falling in love with them. He’s great in bed and they have fun together. So the fact that Erin immediately decides that she can’t trust him totally turns me off of her. I understood why, but I didn’t understand how. Aiden warned her about his ex long before she paid Erin a visit. It wasn’t something that blindsided Erin. Yet she’s willing to believe a psycho?

Then there is Mel. Mel—my favorite Virgin River heroine—who went CRAZY in this book. She turned into a character that I didn’t recognize. I understood her reaction to the particular situation she found herself in, but I found her way of dealing with it completely unlike her. She completely tries to railroad Jack into doing something he doesn’t want to do. There’s something even worse, but to tell you would be to spoil it.

This book was just a hot menopausal mess. I liked Erin (other than the whole distrust thing) the best b/c it seemed like she came the farthest. She opened herself up to life and found someone to love.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Virgin River

three-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Guest Review: How to Forget a Duke by Vivienne Lorret

Posted June 13, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: How to Forget a Duke by Vivienne LorretReviewer: Tracy
How to Forget a Duke by Vivienne Lorret
Series: Misadventures in Matchmaking #1
Published by Avon
Publication Date: May 29, 2018
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 384
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
three-stars

The Bourne Matrimonial Agency has one rule: Never fall in love with the client. A simple thing to remember...unless you’re a matchmaker with amnesia.

The Duke of Rydstrom needs a wife. Preferably one with a large fortune and a complete lack of curiosity. The last thing he needs is a meddling matchmaker determined to dig up his dark family secrets.

All Jacinda wants is to find a bride for a duke. How hard could that be? He’s handsome, enigmatic...and hiding something. She’s sure of it. Determined to discover what it is, she travels to his crumbling cliffside estate. Yet, by the time she washes up on his beach, she can no longer remember who she is or why the duke is so familiar to her. All she knows is that his kisses are unforgettable—and she intends to use every skill she can to discover what’s in his heart.

When Miss Bourne can’t remember what brought her to his ancestral home, Rydstrom intends to keep it that way. Yet as the days pass, his true challenge will be safeguarding his secret while resisting this woman who—confound it all—may well be his perfect match.

The Bourne Matrimonial Agency is where the Crispin Montague, the Duke of Rydstrom goes when he decides he needs a wife.  The agency is run by three sisters, Jacinda, Ainsley and Briar Bourne, along with their uncle.  The uncle is the figurehead for the agency as the girls do all the work, but of course that wouldn’t be proper so everyone thinks that the uncle runs it all.

Jacinda is incredibly devoted to finding matches for the subscribers of TBMA and when someone comes in looking for a match she wants all of the information she can get about them so that she can make a perfect match.  When the Duke of Rydstrom enters and states he wants a wife, the sisters are thrilled because finding this man a match will be a feather in their fledgling business’s cap. Unfortunately for Jacinda, the duke isn’t too forthcoming about himself.  This leads Jacinda to believe that she needs to do more digging.  She decides to dress as a maid in his home and investigate him, but she’s caught by the duke himself before she can find out too much.  She does get a clue about something going on in his family home, so she decides to head there.

The duke realizes that the secret he’s trying to keep may be discovered by the nosey Jacinda Bourne so he heads to his family seat to stop her. What he finds is Jacinda, washed up on shore near the village, with amnesia.  The doctor tells him that no one can tell her information about herself because then she might get false memories, so the duke is stuck taking care of Jacinda in his home and trying to keep her and his secret – his illegitimate sister – away from each other.

While Jacinda is in his home the duke sees another side of Jacinda – not just the nosy busy-body he thought her before.  He sees a bright, intelligent, kind woman who is definitely curious, but in a way he can accept.  Jacinda and Crispin actually become friends and their feelings start to grow deeper from there.  Crispin would love to have Jacinda as his wife but his estate is broke and he needs money in order to keep his home up and running and secure a future for his sister. How can he love one woman yet bring himself to marry another?

This was a cute story.  I like the premise of the book and many of the characters.  Unfortunately, I didn’t like Jacinda all that much.  Ok, I disliked her intensely.  She annoyed the hell out of me with her attitude from page one of the book.  She was constantly into things that didn’t concern her and snooping where she shouldn’t – then making excuses for it all.  She improved a tad bit when she had amnesia but she was still annoying even then.

Crispin was a great character as was his sister, Jacinda’s sisters and uncle, the servants and even the villagers.  I liked them all.  Unfortunately because I didn’t like Jacinda I couldn’t fully get into the romance because I wanted Crispin with someone else.

So, while I like the writing and writing style, as well as many of the characters and the premise, this book fell short for me because of the heroine.

Rating: 3 out of 5

three-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Guest Review: On Highland Time by Lexi Post

Posted June 1, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: On Highland Time by Lexi PostReviewer: Tracy
On Highland Time (Time Weavers Inc. #1) by Lexi Post
Series: Time Weavers Inc. #1
Published by Entangled: Amara
Publication Date: May 28, 2018
Point-of-View: Third Person
Genres: Time Travel
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
three-stars

For fans of sexy Scottish Highlanders who know how to treat a woman like a lady.

When someone changes history, affecting the future, Diana Montgomery, the most experienced agent of Time Weavers, Inc., travels back to 1306 Scotland to change it back. Her mission, to find the culprit and ensure a minor clan chief dies in battle as he originally had.

Diana is well-prepared to infiltrate the small MacPherson clan. What she’s not prepared for is Torr MacPherson, the ruggedly handsome warrior with a kind heart and a steadfast loyalty—the Laird she’s supposed to ensure dies.

Diana is a member of a group called TWI, Timer Weavers Inc.  When they are made aware of something that changed in the past, but wasn’t supposed to change, TWI steps in to put things back to normal.  When Diana wakes up one day and her mansion is pretty much in the middle of a slum, the group knows that something in history changed.  She gets instructions from the head of TWI to go back to medieval Scotland.  Apparently a Scottish Laird, Torr MacPherson, was supposed to die, but didn’t, and this changed everything.  There is another group that TWI calls Disruptors and they go around changing history. I had no clue by the end of the book why they disrupt anything, but I guess it’s job security for TWI.

Diana is sent back to 1306 Scotland where she is to ensure that the Laird does indeed die when he’s supposed to and to try to find out who the Disruptor is.  She sets herself up as a relative of someone in the clan that had passed and tries to stay inconspicuous.  Unfortunately, she catches the eye of the Laird and starts to have feelings for him and he for her.  How can she ensure that he dies when she wants to spend the rest of her life with him?  She can’t stay in 1306 Scotland as it will change the course of history forever.

This was a cute story that I enjoyed reading, to a point.  When I first began reading I kept thinking that I was missing something because the way it was written made it seem like there was maybe a previous book in the series, but that’s not the case.  Because I was a little lost the story didn’t flow well for me at first.  I don’t think it was ever explained how exactly Diana’s boss, the elusive Jules who only speaks to Diana telepathically and who Diana has never met, knows exactly when in history the changes are made by the Disruptors.  Diana woke up and saw her neighborhood was a slum.  Ok, but how does Jules know exactly which point in history caused this to happen?  I have no idea.  There are also a couple of other characters in TWI that were unexplained.  There was one guy, Arthur, who “downloaded” stuff into people’s brains.  What?  It was nuts, and frustrating to not know what was going on.  Why were these people blindly following this person they’ve never met?

The romance between Diana and Torr was kind of sweet but Diana was worrying so much the entire time it was hard for me to enjoy it fully.  Torr didn’t want to fall in love so that was a big obstacle.  Then something happens near the end of the book (that I can’t tell you about) and Torr gets so incredibly pissed at Diana I thought it was over.  Of course I would have been pissed at her too, so I felt his pain.  Unfortunately he got over being pissed way too quickly for me – I would have liked to have seen him take more time to think things over.  IDK, maybe it was just me.

Overall not a bad book but there was too much of the unknown for my liking.  I needed answers to a lot of questions by the time I ended this book.

Rating: 3 out of 5  

three-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , ,