Tag: Contemporary

Throwback Thursday Review: Do You Take This Cop by Beth Andrews

Posted January 7, 2021 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Throwback Thursday 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
Publisher: Harlequin
Publication Date: May 1st 2010
Genres: Fiction
Pages: 256
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one-half-stars
Series Rating: two-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….

This review was originally published on September 9, 2010

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.

This 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, even. 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 (almost) 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.)

Serenity Springs

one-half-stars


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Throwback Thursday Review: Rock Addiction by Nalini Singh

Posted December 31, 2020 by Rowena in Reviews | 5 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Rock Addiction by Nalini SinghReviewer: Rowena
Rock Addiction by Nalini Singh
Series: Rock Kiss #1
Also in this series: Rock Addiciton, Rock Courtship, Rock Addiction, Rock Courtship, Rock Hard, Rock Hard, Rock Redemption, Rock Redemption, Rock Redemption, Rock Addiction, Rock Courtship, Rock Hard, Rock Wedding, Rock Wedding, Rock Wedding, Rock Addiction (Rock Kiss, #1), Rock Hard (Rock Kiss, #2), Rock Redemption (Rock Kiss, #3), Rock Wedding (Rock Kiss, #4)
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: September 9, 2014
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 312
Add It: Goodreads
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five-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

A bad boy wrapped in a sexy, muscled, grown-up package might be worth a little risk…
Molly Webster has always followed the rules. After an ugly scandal tore apart her childhood and made her the focus of the media’s harsh spotlight, she vowed to live an ordinary life. No fame. No impropriety. No pain. Then she meets Zachary Fox, a tattooed bad boy rocker with a voice like whiskey and sin, and a touch that could become an addiction.
A one-night stand with the hottest rock star on the planet, that’s all it was meant to be…
Fox promises scorching heat and dangerous pleasure, coaxing Molly to extend their one-night stand into a one-month fling. After that, he’ll be gone forever, his life never again intersecting with her own. Sex and sin and sensual indulgence, all with an expiration date. No ties, no regrets. Too late, Molly realizes it isn’t only her body that’s become addicted to Fox, but her heart…

This review was originally posted on September 22, 2014.

When I saw Holly make the announcement on our blog that Nalini Singh (of popular paranormal romance fame) was self-publishing a contemporary series about a rock band, I was all about it. I really enjoyed the first and second books in the Psy-Changeling series, but I’m not much of a paranormal reader these days so this series is much more my speed.

I read this book, the first time around, in one sitting.  Now, I read my favorite parts of the book like it’s going out of style. This is one of the review copies that I read before I go to bed because I love Fox that much.

So Fox is the lead singer in the internationally famous rock band, Schoolboy Choir, and he’s got his eyes on his publicist’s sister, Molly Webster. He wants her and what Fox wants, he gets. What started out as one night leads to so much more than that and Molly is surprised.

Molly isn’t one of those model type heroines with the long legs and the long gorgeous mane of hair. She’s not a celebrity.  She’s just a librarian from New Zealand who doesn’t want to be in the spotlight because she’s had bad experiences being the public spotlight.

Both characters were such strong characters on their own but when forces tried tearing them apart, I loved how fiercely protective of each other they were and really, that was what sold me on them as a couple. They really complimented each other and I loved the way that they loved each other.  This book is made up of my very favorite reasons for reading romance.  Strong and interesting characters, sizzling chemistry between the main characters and a strong cast of secondary characters that will most definitely carry their own stories when their time in the spotlight comes (cause we are getting Noah’s story, right? David and Thea, too? =P).

I really liked Nalini’s style with this one.  It’s a great opening story into a series that I’m completely sold on. I’ve got ants in my pants for the next book because Singh shines with this book.  If I had to pick something to gripe about, it would probably be all of the sexy time.  Fox and Molly were insatiable but that’s just me being a hater. LOL.  She gave us a peak into the rock star world in freaking New Zealand and knocked the story right out of the park for me. I can’t wait to get to know the other boys in the band better (in their own books) and I’m really looking forward to seeing how the rest of the series turns out. I most definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a fantastic contemporary romance. You won’t be disappointed, I promise.

Grade: 5 out of 5

Rock Kiss

five-stars


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Throwback Thursday Review: Losing Control by Jen Frederick

Posted December 17, 2020 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Losing Control by Jen FrederickReviewer: Rowena
Losing Control by Jen Frederick
Series: Kerr Chronicles #1
Also in this series: Losing Control, Taking Control
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: June 16, 2014
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 280
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two-stars
Series Rating: three-stars

I’d do anything to keep my mother alive.

Anything, including ask Ian Kerr for help. I don’t know much about him, except that he has more money than some small countries. And he’s willing to spend it on me. Just one catch: there’s a string attached, and not just the one I feel pulling me into his arms and his bed. There’s also the plan for revenge he wants my help with.

Every time he says my name, it makes my body shiver and my heart stutter. I know he’s going to wreck me, know there won’t be anything left of me but lust and sensation by the time he’s done with me, but even though I can see the heartbreak coming towards me like a train, ready to crash into me, I can’t get out of the way. I want what he makes me feel. Want what he’s offering.

This may have started out as something to save my mother, but now…now it’s about what he makes me feel. I’m in danger of losing everything that’s important. Worse? Ian's whispered words and hot caresses are making me believe that's okay.

This review was originally posted on December 23, 2014.

I read this book for my book club meeting last month. Jen Frederick is an author that I enjoy so it wasn’t hard for me to jump right in. It didn’t take me long to read the book but when I was finished, I was a bit underwhelmed and I can’t blame that on the cliff-hanger at the end. I knew there was a second book so the cliff-hanger didn’t bother me one bit.

I just didn’t connect with Victoria, the heroine. And while I enjoyed Ian (the hero), I thought his high-handedness where Victoria was concerned was kind of offensive and reminded me of Christian Grey (even though I’ve never read those books). Yeah, we all wish that a billionaire would come into our lives, become so enchanted with us and then take us away from our poor lives. The fantasy is great but for some reason, it didn’t work for me here.

Victoria is a bike messenger trying to make ends meet. She’s taking care of her sick Mom and doing whatever needs to be done in order to make sure they have a roof over their heads, food on the table and their bills paid. Even if it means working for her douche-hole of a criminal step-brother, Malcolm. She does some shady delivery services for him, asks no questions and makes more money than she would at her normal every day bike messenger job. There are plenty of risks but to keep her Mom healthy and comfortable, Victoria will gladly take those risks.

When we first meet Victoria, I really liked her. She was a bad-ass with enough stress to drown a sumo wrestler but she kept right on going, taking care of business. So when Ian bulldozes into her life, I felt like a lot of the bad-ass I admired kind of went out the window. She turned from this determined young woman who was fighting the good fight against poverty to this new person who was trying to stay strong and independent by coming off bratty and whiny and who still rolled over whenever Ian was around. And then in the end when her life is drastically changed forever, I felt like she dropped the ball. The strong and independent girl that I liked in the beginning was completely gone. She spent so much time worried about her Mom in the book and then when everything goes to shit, she kind of just fell apart. Maybe it’s the way that I was brought up but when shit gets hard, you handle your shit. You don’t fall into a pit of depression and let other people handle shit that you should handle yourself and Victoria (I didn’t like her nickname, Tiny so I refuse to call her that) let me down. She wanted to put distance between her and Ian after all of that stuff with her Mom but who the hell was taking care of YOUR business while you were thinking of leaving him? NOT YOU.

Ugh.

My friend Tasha and I had completely different reactions to this book. She was hooked and though it wasn’t her favorite read, she still really enjoyed it but not me. Even Holly liked this book more than I did but sometimes it happens that way. I didn’t completely hate it. There were moments between Ian and Victoria that I thought were cute and the beginning showed such promise so that was good but those moments didn’t stand out to me in the end because I didn’t rush to start the next book and I have it to read.

Rating: 2 out of 5

Kerr Chronicles

two-stars


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Guest Review: Custom Built by Chantal Fernando

Posted December 16, 2020 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Custom Built by Chantal FernandoReviewer: Tracy
Custom Built by Chantal Fernando
Series: Fast & Fury #1
Publisher: Carina Press
Publication Date: November 23, 2020
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: First person
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 208
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three-stars

After losing her job, saying goodbye to a lifelong dream and having an all-around cruddy year, Bronte Pierce needs a break. A job at Fast & Fury might be just the thing to reset her life, even though she knows nothing about custom motorcycles. But taking a job isn’t the same as keeping it, and her fresh start quickly turns into a fresh nightmare.
Starting with her boss. Crow is hardheaded, stubborn and brutally honest. He may be easy on the eyes, but he runs with an MC and he’s anything but friendly to Bronte. She suspects he has a softer side—just not for her.

Her whole life, Bronte has known that the only person she can truly count on to save the day is herself. But when a single murder turns into a conspiracy and the threat to her life is more than she can handle alone, it’s Crow who comes through—and her newfound family might just become her greatest strength.

Bronte has been let go from her job as an assistant to a private investigator.  The PI is one of her good friends so she understands, but it still hurts.  She’s cautiously excited when she gets a job at a custom bike shop (through her uncle and cousin).  There she meets Crow.  She thinks he’s hot but he’s not very nice to her.  He seems to like everyone else but her, which sucks.

Crow is part of the Knights of Fury MC, which owns the shop and he pretty much runs the place.  He is attracted to Bronte from day one but knows that he shouldn’t get involved with an employee.

When Bronte’s dad dies she is devastated, and Crow is there to take care of her. This strengthens the ties between them that have started to grow, and they finally come together.  When Bronte decides that her dad’s death wasn’t an accident and decides to look into it, Crow and the rest of the MC back her in any way they can.  They are determined to get to the bottom of it and Bronte and the MC are all in.

This was a good story, though pretty simple.  It was definitely a fast and easy read.

Bronte and Crow were pretty darned cute in this story.  They started off not exactly enemies, but definitely not friends.  I loved how he came to take care of her after her dad died.  He was sweet, caring and I loved him.  Bronte wasn’t a bad character, but I just didn’t like her as much.  They were adorable together though, so that saved it for me.

I’ve read Fernando previously (the Cursed Ravens MC series) and while I liked the story, I wasn’t a big fan of the writing in this book. Especially toward the end of the book, there were scenes that I thought were superfluous for the overall story.  Very everyday kind of things that while mildly interesting, but didn’t further the story at all.  I kept thinking the story had ended but it kept going and added even more of Bronte in distress.  It was a bit OTT for my liking, but that’s just my opinion.

In the end a decent read.  I’ll probably read the next book in the series because I liked the other secondary characters.

Rating: 3 out of 5

Fast & Fury

three-stars


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Guest Review: Dream Chaser by Kristen Ashley

Posted December 14, 2020 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Dream Chaser by Kristen AshleyReviewer: Tracy
Dream Chaser by Kristen Ashley
Series: Dream Team #2
Also in this series: Quiet Man, Dream Maker
Publisher: Forever
Publication Date: December 15, 2020
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Alternating first and third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 480
Add It: Goodreads
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three-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

In this steamy, addictive contemporary romance spinning off the New York Times bestselling Dream Man and Rock Chick series, Ryn Jansen must put her trust in the one man she wants -- and the one man she can't let herself have.

Ryn Jansen has no interest in taking a risk on Boone Sadler. Thanks to a long list of men who've done nothing but let her down, Ryn vows to stay far away from the caring, protective commando. And when Boone confronts Ryn with evidence that her loved ones are conning her, Ryn is less than thrilled -- with her family and Boone. But even as Boone proves he's the kind of guy to meet her every need, she doesn't trust him to stay when life gets hard . . .

Boone Sadler's never been one to back down from a challenge. He's determined to show the funny, sexy Ryn that the irresistible connection between them is worth exploring. But caring for Ryn's heart and body becomes a matter of life and death when Ryn's beloved niece and nephew are put in danger and dirty cops begin gunning for Ryn. Soon Boone realizes their romance is in danger of more than heartbreak -- and to have any future together, they'll have to put their trust in each other.

Ryn is a stripper who wants to flip houses.  She bought a house to flip, but her resources have been going towards keeping her sister-in-law and her niece and nephew afloat.  Her brother is an alcoholic and being a single mother is hard for her sister-in-law, Angelica.  Angelica is fragile and has headaches so Ryn takes care of the kids a lot – takes them to school, etc.

When Boone takes it upon himself to do a little investigating into Angelica (because he likes Ryn and doesn’t want her taken advantage of) he finds some stuff that’s not so great.  Ryn is pissed that Boone looked into her life, but even more pissed about what he finds out about Angelica.  When confronted, Angelica tries to deny it, but Boone has pictures/proof.  Thinking to punish Ryn, Angelica cuts Ryn out of the kids’ lives.  When Ryn talks to her brother about it, he takes Angelica’s side and agrees with Ryn staying away from the kids she loves.

Ryn is hurt, but Boone is there to comfort her.  When she is pseudo-kidnapped, he is beside himself.  When there’s a murder and Ryn’s life is in danger, Boone steps up and takes charge.  Since he’s a dom in the bedroom and Ryn’s submissive he thinks this is A-OK, but Ryn’s only submissive in the bedroom, not everywhere else.  Boone and Ryn have a lot to work out if they are to make a relationship work between them.  Ryn has been hurt by the men in her life so taking a chance on  Boone is a huge step – one that she hopes she won’t regret.

This is book two in the Dream Team series.  While this wasn’t a bad story, I didn’t care for it as much as I did book one.  When I first saw that it was BDSM I was put off, but kept reading.  It was really BDSM-light in every way.  Nothing too crazy at all and that was fine.  What bothered me was that there was So. Much. Talking.  My God it just went on and on.  Not a lot happened in the middle of the book and it dragged. I liked the first 25% and the last 15% a lot, but that wasn’t even enough to save the book for me and give it a higher rating.

I liked Boone and Ryn together – and liked Ryn a lot on her own. Boone, by himself, wasn’t my favorite person.  He was like a freight train that ran over Ryn and once he was with her it was fine, but meh, I didn’t love him.  He pulled a stunt once they were together that bothered me a lot, and he never really recovered from that in my mind – despite him trying to talk his way out of it.  It was petty and immature and it pissed me off.

So, while this was a decent read – and I loved the kids in it (should have been in there more, imho) it wasn’t fantastic.  I’m glad I read it for the continuity of the story ARC, but did I love it, no.

Rating: 3.25 out of 5

Dream Team

As an aside let me say I am loving these retro book covers.  They totally remind me of 70’s/80′ cop shows and I find them very cool.

three-stars


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