Tag: Robin Kaye

Review: Call Me Wild by Robin Kaye.

Posted August 7, 2012 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments


Rowena’s review of Call Me Wild (Domestic Gods Gone Wild #2) by Robin Kaye.

Hero: Fisher Kincaid
Heroine: Jessica James

“Robin Kaye’s characters are fun and her writing is light and steamy in just the right spots.”—The Good, the Bad and the Unread

She doesn’t know a single thing about relationships…

Unemployed sportswriter Jessie James plans to make a killing writing a bestselling romance novel. She’s never read one, but really, how hard can it be? Moving cross–country to a borrowed house in Idaho, Jessie starts her research with the first gorgeous guy she runs into…

Luckily, he knows everything…

Sports doctor Fisher Kincaid notices Jessie right away—the transplanted Easterner sticks out like a sore thumb in the small town. When he discovers she’s researching attraction and romance, he graciously offers himself as a test subject. That’s when everything starts to go wrong, and they both find out how much they need a few good lessons in love…

I’ve only read one other book by Robin Kaye that I’m aware of and I liked it. I didn’t love it the way that a lot of my friends did but it was still an enjoyable read. The same can be said for this book. This book follows Jessie James as she travels to Boise, Idaho to get a book written after she loses her job in New York. Jessie was a sports writer for the Times and when she gets canned, her best friend offers her his house in Boise (rent free) if she writes the book that she’s been telling herself she’d write since college.

She’s all about it so off to Boise, Idaho she goes. What I liked about this book was the banter between the hero and the heroine. The romance was pretty hot but it wasn’t over the top cheesy, which I appreciated. Jessie is this tomboy who doesn’t believe in love…and she’s writing a romance novel. Her attitude toward romance novels at first was annoying because as a romance loving woman, it’s nothing that I haven’t heard before. I was okay in the end since she wrote her romance novel and found that it wasn’t as easy as she thought it’d be and everything worked out but her snooty attitude toward the books that I read and love made me want to smack her a time or two.

I laughed when I first heard the names of the boys in Fisher’s family. Trapper, Fisher, Hunter and then their sister Karma. What in the world were their parents smoking when they were all born? Holy cow.

Then there was Fisher. Good ol’ Fisher who is just too good to be freaking true. Fisher loves to cook, clean and take care of Jessie. It was like he lived to serve her and meh, that got a bit tired as the book wore on. All of his cooking and cleaning had me raising my eyebrows but then he started waxing on about RWA and romance novels and how he knows this and that about the romance genre and I about tripped over his perfection. I like my heroes to be great but not so great that I’d be intimidated to be with him and I would have totally been intimidated to be with Fisher. I kept thinking that he was too good to be true while I was reading this book and because I was so wrapped up in how perfect Fisher was, I didn’t pay as much attention to the story as I would have liked.

This book was good. Watching Jessie and Fisher come together was a good way to spend a few hours but there were times in this book when I didn’t think Jessie was good enough for Fisher. I couldn’t really get Jessie’s appeal since she assumed too much and she was stubborn to the bone but, I enjoyed their story anyway. I thought the secondary characters were great additions to the story and enjoyed getting to know Gramps through the many steakfry lunches he had with Jessie.

I’m mighty interested to see if Andrew will be getting his own book. It was kind of a bummer that Jessie never realizes that Andrew is in love with her in this story but maybe if he got his book, she’d find out in there. One could hope. Anyway, this book was enjoyable and I’d recommend this to fans of the Domestic Gods series.

Grade: 3 out of 5

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

Guest Review: Yours for the Taking by Robin Kaye

Posted February 24, 2011 by Ames in Reviews | 2 Comments

Ames’ review of Yours for the Taking (Domestic Gods, Book 4) by Robin Kaye.

He might be too good to be true…

Ben Walsh should be single. Handsome and wealthy, Ben is equally at home in Idaho where he grew up and in Manhattan where he’s now an art dealer. Suave and successful with impeccable taste, he normally has women beating down his door. But the one woman he wants can’t be convinced that he’s for real…

And she doesn’t have the luxury of believing in fairy tales…

Gina Reyez has fought for every bit of her success, and it’s about time for things to start going her way. So when Ben makes a proposal that will allow her to take care of her family the way she wants to, she agrees. Besides, a guy this perfect would never be interested in her…right?

By the time Gina figures out that she’s read Ben all wrong, their lives have become intertwined, and seriously complicated…

I really wanted to enjoy this novel. Unfortunately, the characters and the story/time-line prevented me from liking this book.

Ben Walsh wants his deceased parents’ ranch, and the only way to get it, according to his grandfather, is to marry. When all the women he asks turn him down, he approaches Gina Reyez, with a business proposition. He makes the marriage sound more like a business proposition-with an open ended expiration date. Because that’s what it will be for both of them. They will marry, but they won’t live together. They’ll appear at public functions together and they will definitely not sleep together. This makes Gina think Ben is gay. He is a great cook and he has an immaculate apartment that he decorated himself. I think Gina likes to stereotype. She agrees for her own reasons. Ever since Gina was a young girl, she’s taken care of her little sister. And now that both women are grown up and her sister is married, Gina still tries to take care of her. So the business of marriage to Ben is a good thing in Gina’s book, it’ll help her set her sister and herself up for life. Gina grew up in poverty and she’s afraid of ending back up there again. So Gina and Ben get married, with Gina trying to hide it from everyone who knows her and Ben flaunting it to his grandfather. The first month, they don’t even see each other as Gina remains in New York and Ben returns to Boise to help out with the family business (his family is filthy rich). However, Ben’s grandfather is a scheming old bugger and he manages to drag Gina to Boise, and Gina and Ben have to put on a happy front for the old man. Will these two be able to resist consummating their marriage of convenience?

Ok, now what didn’t work for me. First of all, Gina. She’s one of those fiercely independent women who will bite their nose off to spite their face. She refuses offers of help, she doesn’t discuss things that will affect her family with her family and she’s a stubborn headed fool who at the first sign of trouble tucks tail and runs. She’s afraid of commitment and she definitely has stereotypes about gay men, rich people and towns other than New York. Needless to say, she got on my nerves. She fought Ben at every turn. Everything and I mean everything was a fight for her. She was a control freak.

Ben also got on my nerves. He just bulldozed over all of Gina’s objections to the way things were going. She thought the house he was looking at was too big. Oh well, too late, he bought it. Gina is afraid of flying, oh well, here’s some vodka, don’t worry about it. And then when his grandfather does something very wily and scheming, he invents this whole big plot about how Gina is out to steal his inheritance from him. Whoa buddy! You have quite the active imagination there.

And what was it with both characters jumping to conclusions? Frustrating, very frustrating.

Also, I mentioned that the timeline bothered me. This book takes place over two months. So the first month, these two aren’t even in the same state. But then Gina goes to Boise with Ben and his grandfather and they spend a few days in Boise and then a week at Ben’s parents’ ranch and then a few days in New York. These two very strong, wills-constantly-clashing characters fall in love that quickly? I don’t think so. That just didn’t work for me. And also, Gina’s overreaction to Ben getting mad at her? Like two weeks of a marriage and you’re willing to give up that quickly? Over one fight? GAH

Unrealistic timeline and two frustrating characters. Yours for the Taking gets 2.5 out of 5 from me.

The series:
Romeo, RomeoToo Hot to HandleBreakfast in BedYours for the Taking

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

Review: Breakfast in Bed by Robin Kaye

Posted December 23, 2009 by Holly in Reviews | 4 Comments

Holly‘s review of Breakfast in Bed (Domestic Gods, Book 3) by Robin Kaye

Rich, the epitome of “anti-domestic,” can’t cook to save his life, and his idea of cleaning his apartment is to invite his mother over. But he’s ready to settle down, and he can’t stop thinking about the ex-girlfriend who got away. When he notices that his soon-to-be-married friends cooked and cleaned their way into their women’s hearts, he asks his friend Becca to help transform him into a nurturing man to win back his ex.

Rich is the only guy who’s taken the time to know Becca for herself. She decides she’ll give him the makeover he’s asking for, though she’ll be damned if she’s going to turn him into a domestic god for another woman. She wants Rich for herself, but how can she convince him that her kitchen and her bedroom are the only domestic locales he desires?

I really loved Kaye’s debut novel, Romeo Romeo. Her second release, Too Hot To Handle, didn’t work for me at all. So I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started this book. I’m glad to report it was much better than THTH, though I don’t think it worked as well as RR.

I was surprised to see that Rich’s heroine wasn’t going to be Gina. In Romeo Romeo Gina seems very much in love with Rich, and at the end it seemed like they were going to try to work it out. I figured when Kaye did write Rich’s book Gina would be his heroine. Instead, it’s Becca, Mike’s long lost sister from Too Hot To Handle.

Rich is in a bind. He’d like to be secure in his position teaching at Columbia and be on the fast track to tenure, but his Dean has hinted that things would go better if perhaps he was settled in his personal life. Rich has been dating Gina for several months, so he figures that’s settled enough. When the Dean suggests he bring Gina to an upcoming Charity event, Rich agrees. The problem? Gina dumps him later that same night.

Concerned about his job, he asks Becca, his new brother-in-law’s sister to help him out. Gina said Rich wasn’t domesticated enough for her, so he wants to learn to cook and clean so he can win her back. Not so much because he’s in love with her, but because he needs a date to the function.

Becca wants nothing to do with Rich, but she’s also in a bind. She’s in the process of renovating her new apartment and has no where to live until it’s done. Annabelle, her best friend and sister-in-law, sublet her old apartment to Becca. Unfortunately, Rosalie, Annabelle’s sister, and the owner of the apartment, leased it to Rich. Because she has a feral cat, she really doesn’t have many options. When Rich suggests she help him win Gina back by showing him how to become a Domestic God, she reluctantly agrees.

Of course, neither of them planned on the attraction they feel for each other. Despite her best efforts, Becca can’t seem to continue hating Rich. He isn’t the pompous ass she originally thought him, but is sweet, kind, funny and sexy-as-hell. Rich never really disliked Becca, but he’s surprised at the depth of his feelings for her the longer they’re together.

I think the best part about this book is Rich. His antics as he tries to learn to be more domesticated often had me laughing out loud. Part of me was a little skeptical that a man of 34 didn’t know how to do anything for himself, but I was able to set that aside and enjoy this aspect of the book. Yes, it’s a little unbelievable, but it was also kind of cute watching him figure things out.

Besides his antics being hilarious, Rich showed himself to be a strong, caring, compassionate person. Though he let his mom and aunt take care of him and wasn’t much for serious relationships, he wasn’t a jerk or irresponsible. He just hasn’t fully grown up yet. Watching him do so with the help of Becca was really great.

Becca I loved for the first half of the book. She was strong, independent, witty and caring. Though she’s reluctant to get involved with Rich – even in a platonic way – she wasn’t over-the-top rude about it. She was just a woman who’d erected strong barriers around herself.

The problem for me came toward the second half of the novel. Rich is ready to accept his feelings for Becca much sooner than she, which is fine. Honestly it was the same way with me and my husband. Unfortunately Becca took things a bit too far. Not only did the idea of something more permanent with Rich freak her out, but she pushed him away because of it.

While I understand that Becca had been hurt in the past and had trust issues stemming from her childhood, it drove me insane that she still pushed Rich away. Even that wasn’t too bad, though, because she was trying to work it out. What pushed me over the edge with her was the way she jumped to conclusions about Rich and grasped at one small thing to completely push him out of her life.

Not only was that a ridiculous thing for her to do, but I saw it coming a mile away. She’d been leading up to it, sure, but it’s the same thing Kaye used in both her previous novels. Even the amount of time they were separated was the same in all three books. Up until the last 1/4 of the book, I was really enjoying it. I might have even said it was better than Romeo, Romeo. But the predictability and TSTL actions of the heroine at the end ruined it for me.

Especially since the issue had nothing to do with Rich at all, but with Becca’s trust issues. She latched onto any excuse she could to push him away. If Kaye had used this as a way to show growth on Becca’s part, I would have been ok with it. Instead Becca spends the last quarter of the novel blaming Rich and being angry with him.

Not only do I think Becca needed to grovel more, but I was annoyed with the way Rich reacted. Instead of getting pissed off at Becca he blamed himself.

I was also annoyed by the stereotypical way Rich’s Italian family was portrayed. I remember thinking they were kind of charming and very similar to my own family in the first book, but they’ve become more over the top with each subsequent book. His Aunt Rose’s dialect was even written with a cheesy Italian accent this time around (if that was the case in with previous books I don’t recall). For example:

“[..] It’sa shame. You’re a good’a girl. Richie, he’s a good’a man with you.”

Since I come from a big Italian family, I found that to be too much. It was a bit insulting the way his mother was portrayed (though she didn’t play a large roll in this book).

Although I enjoyed the first half of the book, the actions of the hero and heroine during the second half marred my enjoyment considerably.

3 out of 5

The series:

Book CoverBook CoverBook Cover

This book is available from Sourcebooks. You can buy it here.

Review/Rant: Too Hot To Handle by Robin Kaye

Posted December 22, 2009 by Holly in Reviews | 3 Comments

Holly‘s review of Too Hot To Handle (Domestic Gods, Book 2) by Robin Kaye

He sure would love to have someone to take care of…

Dr. Mike Flynn’s single mom taught him early how to cook and clean, and there’s nothing like vacuuming or doing dishes to help a guy relax. Annabelle Ronaldi is an artist without a domestic bone in her body. Since her fiance’s death, she can’t paint, and life looks hopeless.

Until the day after her sister’s wedding, when she wakes up with Mike next to her in bed, and then she’s really beside herself – because the handsome stranger is a dead ringer for her dead fiance.

After their mind-blowing one night stand, Mike is sure this is the woman he wants to take care of forever, but she acts like she’s seen a ghost. While Mike sets to work wooing Annabelle, she sets to work sniffing out the truth of the convoluted family secret that turns everybody’s lives upside down.

I had reservations going into this book because I didn’t care for Annabelle’s character in the first book Romeo, Romeo. It turns out I was right to be wary. Casee disagreed, however. You can read her review here.

Annabelle and Mike hook at up her sister’s wedding. She doesn’t remember what happened the night before but is totally freaked out when she realizes the stranger in bed with her is a dead ringer for her dead fiance. At first she’s convinced she’d dreaming – or his ghost is stalking her. Eventually she realizes she’s not dreaming and the man in her apartment is for real. But his resemblance to her dead fiance is uncanny.

Mike isn’t thrilled when he realizes the woman of his dreams doesn’t remember him or the night they spent together, but he’s determined to get to know her better. Though Annabelle is reluctant to start a relationship, and Mike isn’t in the best financial situation, he pursues her.

I really liked Mike in the beginning. He just graduated med school and has started work at a practice, but he hasn’t been offered a partnership yet, which means he’s pretty financially strapped. I actually really liked that, because too often romance novel heroes are already loaded, or at least well established in their careers and financially stable. Mike wasn’t. Unfortunately my feelings of good will only lasted until I realized he was turning a blind eye to some bad things in the practice because he’s afraid of making waves. At first I understood his reluctance to say anything, but the longer it went on the more frustrated I became.

Beyond that Mike is practically perfect. He likes to cook and clean, and he actually enjoys taking care of Annabelle. He’s kind and caring, and his pursuit of her is admirable, if somewhat misplaced.

I absolutely hated Annabelle. Right from the beginning she annoyed me, but it just got worse as the novel progressed. I understand needing to be independent, believe me. I also understand that she needed to break away from her family and stand on her own two feet. What I don’t understand is how she kept lying to Mike and keeping secrets from him. Especially the BIG secret. You see, Mike is really her dead fiance’s brother. Annabelle figures this out early in the book, but doesn’t tell Mike.

I didn’t understand the way she kept pushing Mike away and treating him like crap. Several times he called her on it, telling her flat out she needed to decide if she wanted to be with him. Then she’d be like, “Oh here, let me throw you a bone. Ok, I like you. Now stop asking questions about my life and trying to get to know me. Let’s just do the dirty already.”

I guess if this had been a chick-lit I would have been fine with that, but in the end I didn’t buy the romance. I didn’t believe for one second that she loved him. She was using him as a convenient lay. That she was lying to him the whole time was just icing on the cake.

Overall the heroine was beyond annoying and the circumstances behind the main conflict were contrived and dumb. The hero bugged, too. Very disappointing since I loved her debut release.

2 out of 5

The Series:

Book CoverBook CoverBook Cover

This book is available from Sourcebooks Casablanca. You can buy it here.