Tag: Joanna Bourne

Guest Review: Rogue Spy by Joanna Bourne

Posted November 28, 2014 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Rogue Spy by Joanna BourneReviewer: Tracy
Rogue Spy by Joanna Bourne
Series: Spymasters #5
Published by Penguin
Publication Date: November 4th 2014
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books

For years he’d lived a lie. It was time to tell the truth . . . even if it cost him the woman he loved.

Ten years ago he was a boy, given the name Thomas Paxton and sent by Revolutionary France to infiltrate the British Intelligence Service. Now his sense of honor brings him back to London, alone and unarmed, to confess. But instead of facing the gallows, he’s given one last impossible assignment to prove his loyalty.

Lovely, lying, former French spy Camille Leyland is dragged from her safe rural obscurity by threats and blackmail. Dusting off her spy skills, she sets out to track down a ruthless French fanatic and rescue the innocent victim he’s holding—only to find an old colleague already on the case. Pax.

Old friendship turns to new love, and as Pax and Camille’s dark secrets loom up from the past, Pax is left with a choice—go rogue from the Service or lose Camille forever…


Tracy’s review of Rogue Spy (Spymasters #5) by Joanna Bourne

Thomas Paxton is coming clean after years of lies. He’s been working for British Intelligence for 10 years but he was sent then by the French to get their secrets. He was raised as a child to be a spy. His conscience won’t let him keep his secret any longer and he’s prepared to face the consequences.

Camille Leyland was also raised a spy by the French but it was after she was abandoned by her Tuscan family. She also has been a code breaker for British Intelligence but her time is up. She received a letter telling her that the real Camille is alive and well and that she needs to meet a blackmailer at a certain time and place.

Camille heads to London and Pax recognizes her as the young girl he was trained with in France. He follows and soon the two are embroiled in trying to figure out what the blackmailer is up to and they also start to be embroiled in each other.

Joanna Bourne is such a great author. I love reading the wonderful intricacies of her books and they never disappoint.

In this story we have both the current lives of Pax and Cami as well as some of the memories of the two when they were growing up in France and being trained as spies. I loved the backstory of these two characters just as much as the story happening in current time. Pax and Cami were perfect for each other. I loved the soft subtle, purposeful way that they came together in a sea of confusion and uncertainty. From almost the first moment they saw each other again I felt the connection between the two and Bourne just slowly grew that connection into an enduring love. She does that so well!

Of course there were characters – mostly spies – from previous books that were involved in this story and I LOVED that. Seeing the men at work doing what they do best was a definite bonus.

Overall a wonderful story that I thoroughly enjoyed and definitely recommend.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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


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Guest Review: The Black Hawk by Joanna Bourne

Posted November 1, 2011 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Published by Berkley, Penguin

Tracy’s review of The Black Hawk by Joanna Bourne

Attacked on a rainy London street, veteran spy Justine DeCabrillac knows only one man can help her: Hawker, who also happens to be the enemy. With London crawling with hidden assassins and someone out to frame Hawker for the assault, the two spies must work together to find who’s out to destroy them…

Justine is on her way to British Intelligence Service headquarters to see Sir Adrian Hawkhurst – head of the BIS – when she is stabbed. She manages to make it to Meeks St. where they attempt to save her life. As she lays fighting for her life Adrian thinks back on the many years that he and Justine have known each other.

Adrian first met Justine when they were but 12 or 13 years old. He worked for the BIS and she for the French Secret Police. They shouldn’t have even spoken to each other, much less worked together. As the years went on they continued to work with each other from time to time and eventually became lovers. Adrian fell for Justine but since they worked for such different factions they could never be together. We get some great details of their time together and see how the two fell in love.

Now as Justine recovers they must figure out who tried to kill Justine and for what reason, especially when they discover that not only the attempt on her life but the murders of two others are being pinned on Adrian.

This is a book of Bourne’s that I have been waiting for for so very long. I have loved Hawk from the moment he was brought into the picture in past books. He was always such an intriguing character and I just knew that there would be a wonderful story behind him, and I was right. The man pulled himself up by his bootstraps, with help from his friends, to make something of himself. He was a great spy, a great friend and an excellent strategist. He knew what he was doing in his line of work and because of that became the Head of BIS. I couldn’t admire him more.

With Justine it took me a bit of time to warm up to her. I really liked her and admired her as well for what she had become – especially knowing what she had lived through in her life. She was a person that held herself back for fear of being hurt and betrayed and frankly I didn’t blame her…it just made it harder to get close to her – for Adrian and for me as the reader. After a bit I came to understand her better and when that happened I saw the charm of the woman and could see what Hawk saw in her. Truly they were a perfect couple together and I loved reading their story.

I’ve truly loved reading this serious and hope it’s not over yet. There’s Pax I need to know more about and hope we get his story some day. If you haven’t read this series you should – it’s well worth the time.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’s Place

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

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What I Read Last Week

Posted October 31, 2011 by Tracy in Features | 5 Comments

How are you? If you’re in America are you ready for tonight? Do you hand out candy? Go trick or treating with the kids? Turn off the lights in the house and pretend you’re not home? What do you do on Halloween?

Normally my husband and I switch off duties each year. One of us goes with the kids and carries a backpack to carry extra candy when their buckets get full and one of us stays home to hand out candy. This year, however, it will all change. Both of our kids want to go with their friends to trick or treat and since we get very few kids that come to our house (we live on a hill and no one wants to climb that damned thing to get candy) we think we might just go out for dinner! lol The rule of thumb is, if there’s no porch light on then you don’t go to the house. I’m thinking we turn off the light and go get Mexican food! lol Sounds good to me!

Uh…let’s see…I’m over at DIK for the next couple of days. Today I’m looking for Halloween romances and/or books with costume parties involved. Got any recs? Head on over and let me know.

Damn. I think that’s all I really have to talk about. That’s so sad. After a few weeks of fun I’m back to my boring normal life. What have you been up to? Anything fun?

This week I tried to catch up on my reading commitments because I was hella behind. I mean, really behind. I made a dent but I’m still trying to play catch up. Unfortunately this meant no m/m reads for me which made me sad. I need to work on that this week.

First up was Lord of the Wolfyn by Jessica Andersen. This is book 3 in the Royal House of Shadows. This one was my favorite of the 3 so far. This was Dayn’s book. He is a vampire like his father was but when his parents enact their spell and send him away from Elden they end up sending him to the land of the Wolfyn. He is accepted there for the most part but only because they have no idea who or what he is. After 20 years the woman he’s waited for appears from the human realm and she is to guide him to the portal back to Elden. Both Dayn and Reda, his guide, do a ton of growing in this book and I loved seeing that growth as well as the relationship that begins – first as just sex then as something more. I’m looking forward to reading the last book in the series, Lord of the Abyss by Nalini Singh. 4 out of 5

Next up was When Harriet Came Home by Coleen Kwan. This was a coming home story as well as a bit of an ugly duckling book. Harriet has come home after 10 years to be with her father who has had a car accident. She stayed away because she never felt welcome in her home town as she was heavy and wore glasses, but also because she had blown the whistle on the mayor of the town and created a huge scandal. She runs into her high school crush, Adam, who also happens to be the son of the former mayor who isn’t too happy to see her to say the least. But Adam soon gets over his bad feelings for Harriet and wants to try to start a relationship with her. Harriet still has self-esteem issues and is a hard nut to crack. I liked Adam and the whole coming home part of the story but I didn’t really care for Harriet in this story. She had her moments when I really started liking her but then she’d act like she was in high school and act incredibly immature and it just didn’t do her justice. Overall a cute story though. 3.25 out of 5

My next read was Telling Tales by Charlotte Stein. This was one I read for The Book Binge and it while it had a relationship in it I wouldn’t exactly call it a romance. It was about 4 friends in a writing group who used to hang out at their professors house in college. Now the professor is dead and he has left the house to the 4 friends but they must live in the house for a month in order to inherit. The four friends explore their writing and even act out some of the sexual parts of the stories. It was a highly erotic and sexual story that I honestly couldn’t figure out how to rate…so I didn’t. I wrote a review for The Book Binge so if you’re interested I’ll let you know when the review posts.

My next read was The Black Hawk by Joanna Bourne. This is book 4 in her Spymaster’s Lady series and it was really, really great. It’s Adrian’s book and it was about how he fell in love with a French spy – of course he’s a British spy so that makes things difficult doesn’t it? Yes, it does! I read this one for The Book Binge as well so I’ll let you know when my review posts. 4.5 out of 5

Next was Destined Mate by Katie Reus. A great shifter story! I wrote a review and it will post on Thursday so keep your eyes open.

I hadn’t read a good mystery in a while so I was looking forward to reading Unfinished Business by W. Soliman. It did not disappoint. I’ll post my review of this on Wednesday so stay tuned.

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
Sage Creek by Jill Gregory
Animal Attraction by Jill Shalvis

Happy Reading!

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Guest Review: The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne

Posted June 24, 2010 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 2 Comments

Published by Berkley, Penguin
Tracy’s review of The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne

A glittering French aristocrat is on the run, disguised as a British governess. England’s top spy has a score to settle with her family. But as they’re drawn inexorably into the intrigue and madness of Revolutionary Paris, they gamble on a love to which neither of them will admit.

Marguerite de Fleurignac (Maggie) is trying to survive after her family’s chateau has been burned to the ground. William Doyle aka Guillaume LeBreton is an English spy who’s been sent to retrieve Maggie’s father. Doyle finds Maggie at the chateau and both spouting their lies about their identities begin the trip to Paris. Doyle is hoping that Maggie leads him to his father and Maggie is just hoping that her underground network is safe and that everyone can be alerted about its dissolution.

On the trip, along with a young spy-in-training, Adrian Hawker, Maggie and Doyle surrender to the lust that builds between them. But it’s not just lust that’s building, it’s something stronger and deeper than either of them have felt before. What starts as a kiss in a frightening moment becomes the intimacy of sharing themselves verbally and then emotionally. When they get to Paris what they discover is that Maggie was betrayed by her family – but which family member and how will she and Doyle get out of the mess they get into?

There’s no getting around it – I love Joanna Bourne’s work. She has such beautiful prose and such emotionally charged stories that I can’t help but find myself falling into them like a soft feather comforter. She truly has a magical way of setting the stage for all the things that will happen in the book and I’m amazed at how her mind works.

The story was about le Fleche, the underground network that Maggie was a part of, it was about the utter deviousness of the men who were trying to take over Paris during the occupation but it mostly is about how Maggie and Doyle work out their differences, discover themselves as well as each other and decide that living and fighting is much giving in. And of course it’s about Doyle and Maggie finding love. The passion that the two share is amazing. The feelings that are conveyed in their thoughts when they are both together and apart had my romantic heart flipping with joy. This was just a wonderfully incredible book and I can’t recommend it enough.

Rating: 5 out of 5

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’s Place

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

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What I Read Last Week

Posted June 7, 2010 by Tracy in Features | 19 Comments

Hello there!
How the heck are ya?  Did you all have wonderful weekends?  I hope so.  Mine was definitely fun filled. 
On Friday night my youngest had, once again, another belt test.  I know it seems like she just had one but the last one was in March.  She did a great job on everything up until she had to break a board.  Her back kick is probably her weakest kick and of course that’s the kick she had to use to break the board.  He called her up and gave her about 8 chances and she couldn’t do it!  OMG the poor thing was in tears.  But then he looked at her and told her that he’d give her another try after he had tested some of the higher belts.  When he called her up again it was still touch and go but she managed to do it.  Here’s the vid of the second set of attempts.
And she passed!  Yay chickie!  Here’s a picture when she got her green belt.  I tried to video tape it but apparently I hadn’t cleaned up my camera in a while and the memory was too full – yikes! 🙂

Then Saturday the whole family went to Lori’s son Steve’s Bar Mitzvah.  He did a great job at the service and the party was a ton of fun.  They did a great job decorating the party room and the dj’s were great – they had everyone out there dancing.  I practically had to drag my girls off the dance floor when it was time to go.  Just a really fun party.
Well, on to what I read this past week:

I started with Lord of the White Hell by Ginn Hale.  This was an ARC of the book that releases on August 15th. It was an excellent read that I highly recommend.  You can read my review here. 5 out of 5

Next was Hue, Tint and Shade by Jordan Castillo Price.  This is the first story in the Petit Mort books and it was very good.  I really enjoyed reading about Tommy the total introvert and Nathan the outgoing window washer get together.  4 out of 5

Then another of my FTSP books Pack Territory by Crissy Smith.  This was Adam and Tasha’s story.  Adam is helping Tasha find her sister who has run away and they start to fall in love.  Along with that Adam has to deal with the fact that his father is in a m/m relationship.  I liked this one but not as much as the other 2 in the series.  3.5 out of 5

My next read was The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne.  OMG I loved this book.  As much as I liked her other 2 books in this series I thought this one was just that much better.  Marguerite and William were just fabulous together.  This is a prequel to the other 2 books so if you haven’t read the series yet you could start with this one and still be ok. 🙂  I read this one for The Book Binge so will let you know when the review posts.  5 out of 5

Pool Hall Green by Sara Bell was my next read.  This is the story of Drew and his struggle with his family.  His parents kicked him out of the house when they found out he was gay but yet call him to get his reckless brother out of trouble whenever they can’t handle it.  It was a very good story about Drew coming to terms with his family and falling in love along the way.  I will definitely be reading more from Bell in the future. 4 out of 5

Skin Tight by Ava Gray was a really good book.  This is book 2 in the Skin series and it follows 2 characters we met in book 1 – Kyra’s friend Mia and casino thug Foster.  Only Foster is now Thomas Strong and he and Mia are working at the same facility.  It seems that Kyra and Strong weren’t born with the powers that they have  – they were basically science experiments.  Mia and Strong work together – against Strong’s better judgment and become close while in the process.  I really liked this story.  Strong (you’ll find out his real name in the book but I don’t want to give it away) is so closed off it was nice to see him loosening up and starting to trust someone – which he hadn’t done in a very long time.  4 out of 5

Yesterday was manga day.  I had a few piled up and knew I had to get to them so I could send them on to their next temporary home so I had a yaoi manga binge.

*The Devil’s Secret by Hinako Takanaga was the story of an incubus demon and a priest. There were some other shorts in there as well.  Interesting stories – pretty good graphics. 3.5 out of 5

*Sugar Milk by Dokuro Jaryu was a bunch of stories.  I didn’t particularly care for the graphics in this one – nor the stories – they were just kind of odd. 2 out of 5
*Shy Intentions by Shoko Takaku was the story of the teacher and the artist.  The teacher was pretty much relating the story of how they got together to another acquaintance.  I liked this one but I think I would have liked it better had it gone in chronological order.  The story was told – then they went back even further…then further again.  It was strange, but still good. 3.5 out of 5
*Restart by Shouko Hidaka was the story of 2 models.  One was going strong and then kind of fizzled out while the other started slow but is rising swiftly.  They get together when one is drunk and that starts the feelings a flowing.  I liked the story and the graphics in this one. 4 out of 5

Last of the week was Black Wade by Franz and Andaerle.  I’ve been wanting to read/view this graphic novel since Sarah put it on her DIK reading list.  It has wonderful color graphics and a short but good story.  Definitely worth the read/view. 4 out of 5

My Book Binge review that posted this past week:

Happy Reading!

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