Tag: Olivia Drake

Guest Review: The Scandalous Flirt by Olivia Drake

Posted November 3, 2017 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: The Scandalous Flirt by Olivia DrakeReviewer: Tracy
The Scandalous Flirt by Olivia Drake
Series: Cinderella Sisterhood #6
Also in this series: Abducted by a Prince
Published by St. Martin's Press
Publication Date: October 31st 2017
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 352
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-half-stars


Scandal begins with just one kiss. . .

Aurora Paxton was once the belle of the ball, the most sought-after debutante of the season―until a scandalous mistake ruined her. Shunned by her family, Rory was banished to the country to live in disgrace. Now she’s been summoned back to London by her stepmother, who is being blackmailed by the least likely person Rory can imagine: Lucas Vale, Marquess of Dashell.

Lucas is someone Rory’s known for years―a man as devastatingly handsome as he is coldly disapproving of her. What in the world could he want from her or her family? Rory intends to find out as soon as she comes face to face with her old foe. What she never expects, however, is that the icy aristocrat has a soft spot for her―and a secret plan to redeem her status. Could it be that Lucas has been in love with Rory all along. . .and has finally found a way to win her heart?

Aurora Paxton had it all.  Beautiful, vivacious – having the time of her life during her first season.  That all came to a crashing halt when she was found in a compromising position with an Italian diplomat, Stefano.  When her father demanded that Stefano marry Rory, Stefano admitted to having a wife back in Italy.  Rory was devastated that the man she thought loved her had lied to her.  Then her father and stepmother banished her from London and off she went to live with her aunt in Norfolk.  That was eight years ago.

When a Lady Milford shows up at her aunt’s house unexpectedly and tells Rory that her stepmother needs her help, Rory is skeptical as her aunt dislikes her intensely.  Then Lady Milford mentions that not only is her stepmother being blackmailed but that Rory’s sister, Celeste, is getting married to a duke in a month – a man that Rory thinks is way too old for her sister.

Rory heads to London and after talking with her stepmonster…uh, I mean stepmother, she heads off to work as a companion to the Marchioness of Dashell, the current Marquesses mother who is bedridden.  Rory’s stepmother believes that the Marquess, Lucas Vale, is the one that stole the letters and is blackmailing her. While working as a companion Rory will be able to search the house for the missing letters. Rory remembers the Marquess as being a stuffy prig and he proves he still is – for a bit. The longer that Rory is in the household the clearer she sees that Lucas isn’t as stuffy as she originally believed.  When Rory determines that Lucas isn’t behind the blackmail he agrees to help her find the true culprit which pushes the pair together.

The Scandalous Flirt is a book inspired by a fairy tale.  Lady Milford has enchanted slippers that supposedly bring the wearer to their true love. When Rory heads back to London Lady Milford hands over the shoes for Rory to wear.  Now, I know that the whole premise of the fairy tale is that the enchanted slippers were supposed to bring Rory to her true love but that was mostly Lady Milford and the stepmother pushing Rory toward Lucas.  Yes, Rory wore the shoes but really, I didn’t feel they had anything to do with it and they were only mentioned a couple of times in the book.  Lucas had been smitten with Rory eight years earlier and with them in close contact constantly they were bound to get closer.  Since this is based on a fairy tale I just wish that it had been more fairy tale-ish.  But that’s me. 🙂

While I liked Lucas by the end of the story, he wasn’t a soft man and for most of the book I was on the shelf as to whether I actually liked him or not.  I did believe he truly loved Rory and was happy they ended up together in the end.

Rory and I had a love hate relationship.  There were things I liked about her, definitely, but sometimes her stubbornness and I-am-woman-hear-me-roar ways drove me a bit batty.  I understand she was a feminist and that was awesome but there were occasions in the book where what she thought of as feminism was her just being reckless and yes, I’ll say it, stupid.

The romance wasn’t typical in this book but it was good.  I liked Rory and Lucas together and they played well off of each other.  I was happy that Lucas went for the poor, scandalous girl in the end.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

three-half-stars


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Guest Review: Abducted by a Prince by Olivia Drake

Posted January 22, 2015 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Abducted by a Prince by Olivia DrakeReviewer: Tracy
Abducted by a Prince by Olivia Drake
Series: Cinderella Sisterhood #3
Also in this series: The Scandalous Flirt
Published by Macmillan, St. Martin's Paperbacks
Publication Date: April 29th 2014
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-half-stars

She's not waiting for her prince. He's not looking for a bride. But sometimes the most unlikely love stories end in ‘happily ever after'...
SHE WAS STOLEN AWAY
Ellie Stratham gave up her childhood dreams of a fairy tale romance long ago. To repay her late father's debts, she's forced to serve her spoiled cousin, Lady Beatrice. But Ellie has devised a secret plan to escape her life as a drudge. A plan that is thrown into jeopardy when she's abducted by a mysterious stranger.
BUT CAN HE STEAL HER HEART?
A notorious seducer of women—and a scoundrel to boot—Damien Burke has earned his nickname as the Demon Prince. But his plot to kidnap Lady Beatrice to make her brother return a priceless heirloom backfires—and he ends up with their penniless cousin Ellie as his hostage. By the time Damien realizes his mistake, he and his fiery-willed captive are trapped in a remote castle during a wild winter storm. And he soon finds that the true hostage may be his own heart.

Tracy’s review of Abducted by a Prince (Cinderella Sisterhood #3) by Olivia Drake

Damien Burke was at Eton on what he thought was a scholarship when he was attacked by bullies. The boy in charge of the group was Walt Stratham and he took something precious from Damien. Damien believes that that item will lead him to whoever his parents are – whether they be paupers or royalty. He has waited years for his chance to get the item back. Damien now owns a gaming hell and Walt has lost a ton of money. Damien tells Walt that he needs to return the item or he will hold his young sister for ransom. Well, Walt’s an idiot and doesn’t return the item and Damien kidnaps Beatrice. Only, it’s not Beatrice he takes but her cousin Ellie.

Ellie is furious that she’s been taken in Beatrice’s place but due to weather and other circumstances she can’t get back to her family in a timely manner. This gives her time to first: look for an escape – none – and second: to get closer to her kidnapper. She lusts after Damien and ends up giving him her virtue as she knows she’ll never marry and has no need of it. She believes she’ll live on memories for the rest of her life. Ha!

Without giving too much of the plot away we see Damien and Ellie together but while Damien wants Ellie to be with him permanently she still believes that she needs to be on her own and wants to leave. This causes all sorts of issues and makes Damien and unhappy man. Ellie was kind of rude about the whole situation but Damien deals with it. He’s not letting something like Ellie’s actions stand in the way of his love.

I didn’t read the first two books in the series but that ended up not being an issue. Yes, there was a character in the story, Lady Milford, who I would have liked to have known more about but it wasn’t a necessity.

The story was very cute and I liked it a lot but quite frankly Ellie had me confused. She cared for Damien and once they were together could pretty much live her life as she wanted but yet she insisted that she be on her own. Yes, this was what she’d dreamed of for forever – to get out of her uncle’s house and be her own person, but Damien was letting her do that and more. I couldn’t see the issue but Ellie put her foot down, and pretty hard too. That didn’t stop her from caring for Damien but it put a damper on the relationship in my mind.

The story was sweet and it was a very readable book. If you want a bit of a fairy tale love story then this would be the one to read.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

 

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

three-half-stars


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Guest Review: Scandal of the Year by Olivia Drake.

Posted August 23, 2011 by Tracy in Reviews | 6 Comments

Tracy’s review of Scandal of the Year (Heiress in London #3) by Olivia Drake

The youngest of the Crompton heiresses, Blythe yearns to marry into the aristocracy to bolster her family’s place in society. The widowed Duke of Savoy seems to be the perfect choice, yet it’s another man who sets her heart to pounding: the new footman, James. He’s devilishly handsome and far more fascinating than any of her noble suitors. And he alone has the power to stir her romantic dreams.

Little does she know, however, James Ryding is the true heir to the Crompton fortune. He’s posing as a servant in order to find evidence to prove her parents are imposters. By charming Blythe, he hopes to use her to regain his rightful inheritance. But as heat flares between them, he realizes that fulfilling his quest will mean ruining the beautiful, spirited woman who has captured his heart.

James Ryding has been living in Barbados for 20 years when he gets a letter stating that the people who are supposedly his cousins are imposters. James takes it upon himself to try to discover the truth as he can’t quite tell from looking at Edith and George Crompton if they are who they say they are (he was only 10 when he last saw them). He poses as a footman in the Crompton household and sets about trying to obtain evidence. While posing at a footman he has interactions with Blythe the youngest daughter of the Crompton’s. James immediately decides he wants her in his bed but he really wants the truth more – which will get him his rightful inheritance.

Blythe is a bit put off by forwardness of the new footman but since he’s so different she can’t help but notice him and after a bit, converse with him. Blythe is trying to make a advantageous marriage match and since her parents so desperately want her to marry the Duke of Savoy that’s what she decides to do to make them happy. But the duke’s daughter Lady Davina is a snob and wants Blythe no where near her father. Blythe concocts a plan to distract Lady Davina from her guardianship of her father so that Blythe can get near. She fabricates a foreign prince…of course talking James into being the fictitious prince…only her plan backfires and her mother decides that it’s the prince she is to marry.

But what happens when Blythe falls in love with James and what will happen to their marriage when James admits that not only is he not a footman but her parents probably aren’t who they say they are either?

This was a pretty good story but found it to be slow at times. It caught my attention right off the bat but then slowed and it continued on that vein for the rest of the book. I thought that the decision to become a footman was a bit far fetched for James to discover the truth but I went with it and it seemed to be ok. When Blythe decided to add in the prince it was too much. Here we have James acting as a footman, acting as a prince? It didn’t work that well for me. I understand this is romantic fiction but I just couldn’t suspend belief for this story.

The end of the book was interesting when everything…and I do mean everything, was revealed to Blythe – but James’ actions (or non-action as was the case) after the reveal were odd. I know that he grew up during the course of the book and his priorities changed so that made it a bit better but I have to say I felt a bit let down by it all.

Overall a cute story that I had some issues with.

Rating: 3 out of 5

The Series:


Seducing the HeiressNever Trust A Rogue (Heiress in London)Scandal of the Year (Heiress in London)

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’s Place

This book is available from St. Martin’s Press. You can buy it here or here in e-format.


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What I Read Last Week

Posted August 22, 2011 by Tracy in Features | 13 Comments

It’s Back to School time! Can you believe it’s already time for my kids to go back to school? I can’t. Where the heck did the summer go? I have no idea! The kids, however, were rip roaring and ready to go. They don’t like the homework but they wanted to see all their friends and my youngest LOVES going to school – she’s so academic. I love that but wonder where she got that…definitely not from me. lol Here’s my youngest on the first day of school starting 4th grade – ZOMG 4th grade!

She’s so cute!
My oldest started the day after and since we had an ant problem when we woke up that day (no, there was nothing they could get at but there were a damn lot of them nonetheless!) so we had to rush to get her to school and I didn’t take a picture. I know, I suck. I will get one this week though – she’s grown so much and she’s adorable so I have to share. 🙂
I’m loving my Kindle. Thanks to all who helped with the info from last week, it was extremely helpful. My print books are suffering though. The Kindle’s so fast that I haven’t been reading that many print books and they’re staring forlornly at me whenever I walk into the office at home and I hear them sniffle and whisper *read us, read us, don’t you love us anymore?*. It’s very sad.
Speaking of Kindle’s…a bunch of us in my family all chipped in for my mom’s b-day and bought her a Kindle! I think she likes it – not sure she’s had all that much time to play with it but hopefully she’s loving hers as much as I’m loving mine. 🙂
This weekend we had what we called a Back to School Bash here at the church and we had a HUGE double slip and slide. The kids absolutely loved it and had such a fun time. Here’s a picture of the slide and then one of my two girls racing each other. Looks like fun! (No I didn’t get in)

On to what I read this past week:

I started off with Second Chance at the Sugar Shack by Candis Terry. I really, really liked this story about a woman coming back to her home town for her mother’s funeral and then staying on to help her father at the family bakery. She left town 10 years earlier without saying a word to anyone and there are many hard feelings between her and her old beau as well as the argument that her and her mother never resolved. This was a great contemporary (with a little bit of ghost thrown in) and I definitely recommend it. You can read my review here. 4.5 out of 5

My Tracy’s TBR Challenge read for the week was Slow Bloom by Anah Crow and Dianne Fox. This m/m novel is the story of Ricky Talbot who is a 18 almost 19 year old boy who is taking care of his neighbor’s lawn for the summer. His neighbor, Jack Corson, and Ricky have a sexual experience one day and they think that’s all it will be until Ricky contacts Jack to help him out when he gets beat up at a bar one night. The two start what ends up being a two year relationship that is sometimes long distance as Ricky returns to college. I was a little perplexed at the age difference in this story at first since Jack is 48 and Ricky is 18 (and since Jack is described as much older it was odd – I swear I thought they were going to say he was 60! lol) Anyway, as the story moves on I had no issue with the age difference. Ricky is extremely intelligent and mature and it helps the relationship work. It’s tender and loving and I really enjoyed the book. 4.25 out of 5

My next read was a short erotic m/m called What’s A Boy to Do by Diane Adams. This is a very cute story about Tyler who has a boyfriend, Jake, but yet is in love with his roommate, Z. Z can’t decide whether he’s gay or not or actually wants to be with Tyler but it doesn’t stop him from sleeping with Tyler whenever he’s between girlfriends. I tried not to let that part bother me as the story was so short. One day Z starts coming on to Tyler when Jake is there and soon all both Z and Jake are having their way with Tyler. It was a short but great sex scene. I would love to read more about all three of these men in a longer format. 4 out of 5

Next up was Scandal of the Year by Olivia Drake. James has been told that the people who he thinks are his cousins are imposters. If they are then he would stand to inherit. He decides to pose as a footman to gain info on the family but instead ends up acting like a prince from a foreign country for the daughter of his cousins so that she can marry a duke. The pair end up falling in love but what happens when James reveals who he is and the reasons he’s there? This was cute but I had some issues with it. Mainly that James playing part upon part was a bit much. I never did see James and Blythe as all that in love and I didn’t care for the end all that much. 3 out of 5 

(read for The Book Binge)

My next read was A Solid Core of Alpha by Amy Lane. I’ll be posting my review this week so keep your eyes open for that.

Short story, Stormchild by Vivian Arend, was also cute. A travelling doctor and the woman he meets and has a passionate night with find that they’re more than compatible. I liked the story but it didn’t really have an end. I can only assume that the story continues in the next book. 3 out of 5

Last on the list was Midnight by Ellen Connor. This is book 2 in the Dark Age series and it was good. I didn’t care for it as much as I did book 1 but it was still very good. This has Chris Welsh from book 1 travelling (approx. 4 years after book 1 ended) when he runs into a settlement called Valle de Bravo which is run by Rosa Cortez. He doesn’t plan on staying but he ends up being the resident doctor. Chris and Rosa tap dance around each other but eventually succumb to their attraction. The problem comes when outsiders come to take over the town and Chris turns out to be someone he never would have dreamed of. And is it just me or does the guy on the cover of this book look like Ryan Seacrest? lol 3.75 out of 5 (read for The Book Binge)

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
Happy Reading!


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Review: Seducing the Heiress by Oliva Drake

Posted April 15, 2010 by Holly in Reviews | 2 Comments

Holly’s review of Seducing the Heiress (An Heiress in London, Book 1) by Olivia Drake

Her wealth and beauty have made Miss Portia Crompton the catch of the season. Secretly determined to wed the maharajah’s son she left behind in India, Portia ignores the money-hungry bucks who ply her with bouquets and bonbons. But one suitor will not be deterred: Colin Byrd, Viscount Ratcliffe. He is persistent and presumptuous—and wickedly tempting.
Colin has no delusions about romance. He’s a rogue, a womanizer, and a murderer, and seduction comes as easily to him as breathing. Portia’s fortune is an irresistible lure until Colin’s mercenary scheme hits a snag. Winning her dowry is no longer enough—he wants her heart and her passion. The more adamant she is in her refusal, the more determined he is to seduce her…


Colin is desperate for money. Because of a past scandal he’s basically ostracized from society, which means he doesn’t have a slew of heiresses to choose from. He sees Portia Crompton as the perfect solution to his problem. If only he can convince her of that.

Portia has no delusions about Colin and what he wants from her. Unfortunately for him, she’s already got her heart set on someone else – someone much more worthy of her. But she finds herself charmed despite her conviction not to be and is drawn to Colin in ways she hadn’t predicted. When the Duke of Albright, Colin’s bitter enemy, sees Colin is interested in Portia, he does his best to court her himself. Caught between two men, Portia is unsure what to do.

Colin becomes even more determined to win Portia’s hand once the Duke makes his intentions known. Now all he must do is seduce Portia so she’ll agree to marry him….But in the end, will Colin be the seducer or the one who is seduced into love?

I really enjoyed both main characters. Colin at first comes off as an arrogant, indolent man who wants an easy way to fix all his problems. As the story progresses we see there’s more to him, however, and it was easy to sympathize with him. Though he intends only to seduce Portia into marrying him, he finds himself falling for her – which is very disconcerting to him. He doesn’t want to want her, he only wants her fortune. But once he sets his mind of having her he sets about it in a very charming way. I thoroughly enjoyed his efforts.

Porita was a practical, level-headed woman. She didn’t suffer delusions about herself, her family, or – most importantly, Colin Byrd, Viscount Ratcliff. She’s determined to wait until the end of the season so that she can return to Arun, the love she left behind in India. I liked that though she was set on her course, she wasn’t stupid about it. When presented with what the consequences of her actions would be if she did flee to India, she didn’t just shrug it off or willfully lift her chin and exclaim she would do it anyway. She thought. And considered. It was very refreshing.

I was disappointed that the focus seemed to be taken off Portia and Colin once they did become a couple. The first half of the book is devoted almost solely to them, yet the second half focused more on intrigue and outside conflicts.

This was a quick, light read. I breezed right through it, thoroughly entertained.

3.75 out of 5


This book is available from St. Martin’s Press. You can buy it here or here in e-format.


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