Tag: Category Romance

Throwback Thursday Review: Her Secret Fling by Sarah Mayberry

Posted January 16, 2020 by Holly in Reviews | 5 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Her Secret Fling by Sarah MayberryReviewer: Holly
Her Secret Fling by Sarah Mayberry
Publisher: Harlequin Blaze
Publication Date: December 29, 2009
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 224
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books

Jake Stevens—star reporter and celebrated literary genius—is a snake. How else to explain the way he turns Poppy Birmingham's hero worship into loathing with a single conversation? So what if she's got a lot to learn about journalism? Aren't they coworkers now? On the same team? Jake can take his attitude and…

Then during a job-related road trip, their relationship goes from antagonistic to hedonistic in no time flat. And suddenly Poppy can't think of anything more delicious than having a secret fling with Jake. But with all this intensity, can she really keep it no-strings-attached?

*** Every Thursday, we’ll be posting throwback reviews of our favorite and not-so-favorite books. Enjoy! ***

This review was originally posted on January 18, 2010.

I really like Sarah Mayberry. I don’t know why I haven’t read more of her books.

I bought this book because I’ve enjoyed Mayberry novels in the past, but I was kind of put off when I realized the hero and heroine are both journalists. As it turned out, there was no reason to worry. The characters were stellar and their careers played a minor role in the overall story.

I liked both Jake and Poppy. Our first impression of Jake isn’t a favorable one. He resents Poppy being hired with so little journalist experience and sets out to let her know right away. He isn’t one of the wounded-heart types who’s only an ass to hide his true feelings. He’s just isn’t afraid to say what’s on his mind.

Although Poppy is out of her depth and intimidated by Jake, she doesn’t let him walk all over her. She stands up for herself and gives as good as she gets. Although writing is a new career for her and doesn’t come naturally, she’s determined to make it work.

I really liked that both Poppy and Jake were real characters. They weren’t perfect, they were just two people getting to know each other and dealing with everyday life. It was very refreshing.

The way Poppy acted toward the end kind of bothered me, but I’m not exactly sure why. I think it was that she started acting like a silly girl, pining over a man thinking she could change him. She did wise up – and without too much fuss – so I was able to move past it, but it struck me as not quite fitting in with her character.

Overall this was a very sweet love story with solid characters. I every much enjoyed it.

4.25 out of 5

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


Tagged: , , , , , ,

Lightning Review: The Billionaire’s Pregnant Mistress by Lucy Monroe

Posted January 5, 2018 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Lightning Review: The Billionaire’s Pregnant Mistress by Lucy MonroeReviewer: Holly
The Billionaire's Pregnant Mistress (Petronides Brothers Duo #1; Greek Tycoons #4) by Lucy Monroe
Series: Petronides Brothers Duo #1, Greek Tycoons #4
Also in this series: The Markonos Bride
Publisher: Harlequin Books
Publication Date: December 2004
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 184
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books

When Greek billionaire Dimitri Petronides is forced to give up Xandra Fortune, his beautiful mistress, he's certain she won't be too distraught. For all the intense passion they've shared she's never let him into her heart, and such a commitment-shy woman could never be his wife...

But after their split, Dimitri discovers that Xandra Fortune is not who he thought she was - and she is also pregnant with his child. Now he has to track her down and claim his mistress as his wife!

*Disclaimer: This review was written ages ago. I was doing some routine maintenance and found it hidden in a folder. I don’t know how I’d feel if I read this book now.

Dimitri was an awesome hero. Seemingly cold and unfeeling, he had the perfect constitution for a tortured hero..which he was. Though I was EXTREMELY angry at him for his mistreatment of the heroine early in the book, LM is wonderful at turning characters around and making me love them…despite their idiotic actions.

I loved that Xandra didn’t just fall at his feet, either. She really stuck to her guns and refused to be cowed by him. I love that in a heroine.

Overall it was a great read. I liked the interaction between the h/h and I loved watching the story play out. I love it when a story gets me tied up emotionally, as this one did.

Petronides Brothers Duo

3.75 out of 5


Tagged: , , , , , , , ,

Review: Her Favorite Rival by Sarah Mayberry

Posted October 11, 2013 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Her Favorite Rival by Sarah MayberryReviewer: Holly
Her Favorite Rival by Sarah Mayberry
Series: Mathews Sisters #2
Publisher: Harlequin
Publication Date: September 1st 2013
Genres: Fiction
Pages: 304
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Series Rating: five-stars

A new meaning for office politics  
Audrey Mathews has worked hard to get here. Now she's up for a promotion and nothing will stand in her way—including Zach Black. He's hot, smart and the competition. When they're assigned to the same project, she's shocked at how much she actually likes about him…and how much she misjudged him. 
Before long Audrey is seriously falling for Zach—and indulging in an affair that's against company policy. And the stakes rise when it's clear only one of them can get ahead. So where do they draw the line between competition and love? Especially when she doesn't want to lose either the promotion or the guy….

I almost always hate Mayberry’s characters before I love them. They’re often presumptuous, rude, judgmental, standoffish, or some combination thereof. But I know if I stick with the story long enough they’ll be redeemed. That was definitely the case here.

Audrey has a very competitive relationship with Zach Black, one of the newer men in her department. She wants to advance in her career and she seems him as a real threat to her ability to do that. The fact that she finds him sexy doesn’t really play into it…until they’re forced to work together on a project. When she thought he was a spoiled trust fund guy, he was easy to resist. But as she comes to know the real Zach, she finds he’s a temptation she doesn’t really want to stay away from.

Zach has had his eye on Audrey for quite some time. The only reason he hasn’t acted on his feelings is because he knows better than to mix business and pleasure. Dating a co-worker – especially one so close to his own position – is a recipe for disaster and not worth putting his job in jeopardy. When Audrey reveals her wrong assumptions about him, he knows he should leave it at that. The more distance between them, the better. Too bad he can’t let it go. He wants her to understand he’s a self-made man, not just a flighty playboy.

But when Zach inadvertently hurts Audrey’s career, she isn’t sure she can forgive him. And Zach isn’t sure he can share all of himself with her, anyway. His past is his past, not something he wants to bring into the present. Except it isn’t something he can really get away from.

I have a confession to make: I love when novels start out with conflict or competition between the main characters. There’s something about watching both of them make assumptions and hang on to their pride, only to be brought low by love that gets me every time. As I said above, this is something Mayberry excels at. I’m never left unsatisfied when I read one of her books.

I enjoyed both Audrey and Zach. She never felt like she fit in with her family, which caused her to act out in her teens. A few years of bad behavior sealed her fate as the black sheep of the family, though she’s spent years trying to undo the damage she caused. He’s been taking care of his mother for a long time, and it’s a losing battle as she doesn’t necessarily want to get better. That they were able to lean on each other for emotional support really created a strong bond between them, even though they didn’t realize at first they were lending emotional support to the other.

I liked that Zach continued to try to fix things when he made a mistake with Audrey. Just as I liked that Audrey made the choice to fight for Zach when he tried to push her away.

Another strong, emotionally charged novel from Mayberry. She has the ability to draw me into her stories and make me experience what her characters are experiencing. I enjoyed both the romance between – and the personal struggles of –  the main characters.

4.25 out of 5

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


Tagged: , , , , ,

Review: That Weekend by Jennifer McKenzie.

Posted January 30, 2013 by Rowena in Reviews | 2 Comments

Rowena’s review of That Weekend by Jennifer McKenzie.

Hero: Jake Durham
Heroine: Ava Christensen

As a TV blogger and celebrity reporter with her finger on the pulse of the entertainment world, Ava Christensen figures she’s a shoo-in as cohost at Entertainment News Now. Wrong. The reason?Jake Durham.

To add insult to injury, Ava has to spend a week with her Judas of a boss at the industry’s A-list film festival. All right, so maybe she used to think the hotshot executive producer was a hunk, but that was before he passed her over for promotion. These days, Ava isn’t ready to believe there’s a tender, caring side to the guy. But Jake’s surprising her in more ways than one, making Ava wonder what she really wants. Her dream job…or possibly her dream guy?

This was a quick story that I thought was cute.  It follows Ava Christensen and Jake Durham as they battle wits and their attraction and their issues, together.  So Ava was up for a promotion at work but the new producer Jake chose to go in a different direction and that pissed Ava off because the guy that he gave the position to is related to the big boss and doesn’t have much experience for the job.  But after a quick bitch fest with her best friend, Ava is set to go on a business trip to a film festival and she’ll be happy to get away from Jake.

Ava is annoyed with herself for thinking that Jake was hot and almost kissing him at a party a few months back because she hates him now and he’s a stupid man for not giving her the promotion.  She’s even more annoyed when she finds out that Jake is going to the film festival with her.

This was a cute read.  It had the right amount of cuteness, steam and laughs to keep me happy and I really enjoyed getting to know both Ava and Jake.  They’re both flawed characters but they worked well with each other and they were cute together.  They each made boneheaded moves throughout the book but it didn’t bother me too much.  This was a great read and even though I didn’t absolutely love the heck out of it, I still enjoyed it and will definitely be checking out more from this author.

3.5 out of 5

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

Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Review: The Risk Taker by Kira Sinclair.

Posted January 25, 2013 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Rowena’s review of The Risk Taker by Kira Sinclair.

Hero: Gage Harper
Heroine: Hope Rawlings

Subject: Totally buff ranger Gage Harper

Current Status: Walking wounded—both physically and mentally

Mission: Finally get the girl he could never have

Obstacle: She may just be the biggest risk he’s ever taken

All returned POW Gage Harper wants to do is forget, even if he has to let some gym rat beat him to a pulp to do it. He certainly doesn’t want to tell the tale of his heroism to the tabloids. Especially since he’s no hero…. But one journalist is determined to get the inside scoop—and she’s the only girl Gage has never been able to resist.

Hope Rawlings never took Gage’s romantic advances seriously growing up. After all, she was just his buddy, and a guy like Gage could have any girl he wanted. But now she needs his story to get her dream job in the city. And she’s willing to do anything to get it.

I’m all about military men so I was pretty stoked to read this book.  I’m not going to lie, I wanted to read this book because the cover was just so yummy that I couldn’t pass it up.  Add to the fact that the hero was a POW, yeah my interest in this book was sky high.

So I went into this book, very interested in getting to know the hero and meet the kind of a woman that would snare this very troubled hero’s attention.  There has to be a special kind of woman that would catch his attention, right?

Well, let’s just say that Hope got onto my shit list early on and had to dig her way out but even after all was said and done, I didn’t really like her and it had a lot to do with the fact that she was a reporter, looking for a story and that story was Gage.

Gage and Hope were best friends growing up.  They did everything together and Gage was not shy about letting Hope know he was way interested in being more than just friends.  He asked her out time after time and Hope turned him down, each and every single time.  At first, Hope thought that he was just kidding and she refused to be one of the string of girls that Gage took up with but the last time that he asked her out, asked her to take a chance on him, she turned him down and it broke his heart.

I understood why she turned him down but what I didn’t understand was why she wasn’t up front with him about why she turned him down.  They were best friends.  He just professed his love for you and you said no.  A good best friend would have told him why, all of the why and not just what suited you at the time.  He was heading out to the military, to put his life on the line and you were scared that he wouldn’t come back.  You were scared of losing him the way that you lost your mother, alright…TELL HIM!  But nope, she didn’t do any of that, she just let him go off and think that he wasn’t good enough for her so off he goes to war.

Now he’s back in town, recuperating from being a prisoner of war and he’s obviously dealing with some major shit but he’s not talking about it with anyone.  He’s not ready to tell the story to reporters, he’s not holding any interviews because he went through some major shit overseas and just wants to be left alone….but no, Hope needs that story and she’s going to get it.  No matter what she has to do to get it.

Everything ends the way that it’s supposed to end but the way that Hope handled everything surrounding Gage and the story and well, everything left a sour taste in my mouth and though I didn’t absolutely hate this book, I didn’t love it either.  I did like getting to know Gage and I really liked his family, especially Lexie but Hope left a lot to be desired in a heroine.

Grade: 2.75 out of 5

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

Tagged: , , , , , , , ,