Tag: Time Travel

Guest Review: Till There Was You by Lynn Kurland

Posted April 24, 2009 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 7 Comments

Guest Review: Till There Was You by Lynn KurlandReviewer: Tracy
Till There Was You by Lynn Kurland
Series: MacLeod series #8
Also in this series: Ever My Love
Published by Jove, Penguin
Publication Date: April 28, 2009
Genres: Contemporary, Medieval, Time Travel
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars


Zachary Smith is finished with high-maintenance women, impossible clients, and paranormal adventures. But when he walks through a doorway into a different century— and meets Mary de Piaget—he knows his life isn’t going to turn out quite the way he planned.

Zachary is no stranger to ending up in a different century. He spends his weekends with his brother-in-law finding “gates” and marking them on maps. Sometimes these gates just show up and you’re not sure how it happened. One such gate appears when least expected and Zachary is thrust into the 13th century – in a hallway in someone’s castle. He tries to get away but ends up a guest in the castles dungeon. He’s not quite sure how he’s going to manage to get out of the dungeon much less get back to the 21st century.

Maryanne de Piaget is trying to find a way out of her father’s castle. She’s 27 years old and has managed to get her father to refuse all the offers for her hand in marriage. But this time she’s pretty sure her father will accept the offer from Geoffrey of Styrr and she wants no part of it or him. She feels if she can free the prisoner in the dungeon then he can help her get away. Unfortunately things don’t always turn out the way they’re planned.

This was a wonderful story. The romance that ensues between Maryanne and Zachary is touching yet heartbreaking. Zachary has finally fallen in love and now he has to leave this woman 750 years in the past and go home. He knows that he cannot have this woman he loves and can’t explain to her his reasons – he can’t leave a “footprint” in the past that might affect the future. He falls back on the “I’m not titled therefore not acceptable to your father” excuse and tries his darndest to leave. But in the end he just can’t find it in him to leave her to Geoffrey of Styrr and the horrible things that he feels Styrr will do to Maryanne.

There are so many different issues going on with this story – Maryanne’s father, Maryanne’s cousins, her brother, time travel, murder, intrigue – but it was just a great story and a sweet romance. At first I didn’t think that not having read the previous books was an issue but as the book went on I found myself wondering who all these people were that were involved in the story. The author does give a good description of everyone’s roll in the story but there were some holes that I needed filled. Despite that the story didn’t suffer for lack of my information.

I think this is a great book and would recommend it to anyone who likes a story that contains contemporary, medieval and paranormal elements.

Rating 4 out of 5

four-stars


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Review: Kiss of the Highlander by Karen Marie Moning.

Posted February 28, 2009 by Rowena in Reviews | 7 Comments


Hero: Drustan MacKeltar
Heroine: Gwen Cassidy
Grade: 4.75 out of 5

A laird trapped between centuries…

Enchanted by a powerful spell, Highland laird Drustan MacKeltar slumbered for nearly five centuries hidden deep in a cave, until an unlikely savior awakened him. The enticing lass who dressed and spoke like no woman he’d ever known was from his distant future, where crumbled ruins were all that remained of his vanished world. Drustan knew he had to return to his own century if he was to save his people from a terrible fate. And he needed the bewitching woman by his side….

A woman changed forever in his arms…

Gwen Cassidy had come to Scotland to shake up her humdrum life and, just maybe, meet a man. How could she have known that a tumble down a Highland ravine would send her plunging into an underground cavern — to land atop the most devastatingly seductive man she’d ever seen? Or that once he’d kissed her, he wouldn’t let her go? Bound to Drustan by a passion stronger than time, Gwen is swept back to sixteenth-century Scotland, where a treacherous enemy plots against them … and where a warrior with the power to change history will defy time itself for the woman he loves….

This is my second entry to Nath’s Reread Challenge of 2009. I haven’t done a reread of this book in quite a long time and I wanted to see if my love of this book could stand the test of time. You know how as the years pass, things you used to love become things you can’t get through now and I wanted to see if I would still love this book as much as I did when I first read it, all those many years ago.

I am definitely still a fan of this book and I’m most definitely still a MacKeltar fan. I wish there were more MacKeltar books coming out but I haven’t heard anything (has anyone heard anything?) but it was so good to revisit some of my favorite old characters from this book. It was good to revisit the MacKeltar family and to be apart of their story once more. It took me to when I first read this story because Izzy told me, I just I had to read this series so I did and boy was I happy that I did. I was super obsessed with the characters, with the stories and just the sheer enjoyment of reading a fantastically entertaining read.

This didn’t disappoint me after this last reread. I’m still utterly in love with Dageus MacKeltar (more so because of what I know is to come in the rest of the series) but over the course of this month’s reread, I saw why Drustan was such a force to be reckoned with in the battle of Drustan/Dageus. It while I was reading different scenes in this story like the scene in the clothing store and the scene where she locked him in the outhouse that made me fall for Drustan in a way that surprised me.

I always knew that Drustan was a great hero but for me, it was always, always about Dageus for me but in this book, Drustan took care of some serious hottie worthy business. I loved the way that he loved Gwen. I loved the way that he was with her when they were in her time and I love the fierce love that he wasn’t ashamed to hide from her or anyone when they were in her time and then when they were in his time, I loved how confused, pissed off and then how utterly happy he was with Gwen. He was an all around strong hero that really was good, in every sense of the word and I just loved him.

I thought that Gwen was an excellent heroine for him too. She fought tooth and nail for her man and that will always look good in my eyes. She wasn’t annoying in her quest to get the olden Drustan to remember her and to remember how they felt about each other. Her fierce determination to make him remember and the way that she didn’t give up on them and on their love made for a pretty intense romance that has stood the test of time with me. I haven’t always loved books that I’ve read and loved before. There have been times when I hated a book that I used to love and I’m just so happy that that wasn’t the case with this story.

This story set up Dageus’ story and just everything about this story from the characters (who wouldn’t love Silvan and Nell….and DAGEUS?) to the storyline to those vows. This book is definitely one of those books for the keeper shelf. It will keep you turning the page wanting to know what’s next because you won’t want to stop reading this book and I have to give KMM major kudos for this book. Drustan is a dreamboat and Gwen was a great partner for him. Now, I’m thinking of doing a reread of The Dark Highlander because after rereading that letter at the end of this book, it got me all excited about Dageus and the dark life he turned to after this book.

Loved it, so if you haven’t read this book you really need to fix that because hello? SEXY HIGHLANDERS IN KILTS? What more could you ask for?

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


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Review: Thirty Nights with a Highland Husband by Melissa Mayhue

Posted October 23, 2008 by Casee in Reviews | 4 Comments

Thirty Nights with a Highland Husband

SCOTLAND, 1272. Connor MacKiernan, a descendant of the Fae Prince, is a warrior who lives only for honor and duty. Though he’s vowed never to marry, that’s exactly what he must do to save his sister. Enter a little Faerie magic, and the search for a bride is on.

DENVER, 2007. Caitlyn Coryell is having a really bad day — she just discovered her fiancé with another woman! Imagine her surprise when she puts on some sexy lingerie and an antique pendant and Connor appears in her bedroom, begging for her help. He offers a simple yet outrageous adventure: travel to his time, marry him, and return home.

But nothing’s simple when Cate is trapped in the thirteenth century. The wedding’s delayed, someone’s trying to kill her, and in the middle of all this, she realizes she’s falling in love with a man who can only be her husband for thirty nights.

I wanted to love this book. I’d never heard of this author, so I was really excited to give her a try. I was especially happy to see that there were already four of five books int he series. Unfortunately, I didn’t love this book. I liked it, but I didn’t love it. The prologue was really interesting and I probably will read the next few books if only to see what happens next.

When Connor MacKiernan calls upon Fae magic to bring him a bride, he doesn’t expect a woman from the twenty-first century. It doesn’t change what he needs to do however, which is be released from service to the king by getting married. If he does that, he can stop his uncle from forcing his sister into a marriage that she doesn’t want.

Caitlyn Coryell thinks she’s dreaming when a man appears in her bedroom asking for her help. Figuring that it’s nothing more than an alcoholic haze, she agrees to help him. Even if she wasn’t dreaming, it would only take a day or two until she was back to her life. So she’s not very happy when she’s told that she’ll have to be in the thirteenth century for thirty days.

Though Cate knows it’s only going to hurt her in the end, she can’t help but fall for Connor. Even with his disdain for women, Connor never treats her with anything but respect. Connor has never had anything but bad luck w/ women. Starting with his mother, he’s learned his lesson well. Women can’t be trusted. Still, he finds himself continually watching Cate. Sensing that she’s different, he still has reservations about giving into his feelings.

Cate and Connor’s love should have been a timeless thing. I mean it goes across centuries. Still, I didn’t really feel the connection between the characters. I understood them both as individuals, but as a couple, it didn’t wow me. So even though I didn’t love the book, I am still intrigued by the plot of the series which is why I give it a:

4 out of 5.

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

Other books in the series:

Highland Guardian Soul of a Highlander A Highlander of Her Own


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Shomi Spotlight – Guest Review: Wired by Liz Maverick

Posted September 1, 2008 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 7 Comments


Carolyn Jean’s review of Wired by Liz Maverick.

Seconds aren’t like pennies. They can’t be saved in a jar and spent later. Fate seeps through cracks and shifts like fog. Pluck a second out of time or slip an extra one in, the consequences will change your life forever. Is the man you love really the man you think you know, or is there a version of your life in which he’s your enemy? If you didn’t know who or what you were before, would you take a chance on becoming that person again?

L. Roxanne Zaborovsky is about to discover fate is comprised of an infinite number of wires, filaments that can be manipulated, and that she’s not the one at the controls. From the roguishly charming Mason Merrick—a shadow from her increasingly tenebrous past—to the dangerously seductive Leonardo Kaysar, she’s barely holding on. This isn’t a game, and the pennies are rolling all over the floor. Roxy just has to figure out which are the ones worth picking up.

Wow, WIRED was such a damn fine read—fun, exciting, sexy, plotty, mysterious—the perfect balance of a book.

Okay, first, a bit about the plot, because you know what’s funny? The back blurb, like many events within the book itself, makes a whole lot more sense in hindsight. Translation: not a lot of help from the flap. So here’s the deal:

The book starts when L. Roxanne Zaborovsky, a witty and reclusive computer programmer, is walking to the 7-11 one night. Two fellas appear from nowhere and begin fighting over her—it’s an old college acquaintance Mason Merrick and a British guy named Kaysar. It turns out Mason and Kaysar are “wire crossers,” people who screw around with the past to get the future outcome they prefer, and they each have their own special plans for Roxy and the computer code she’s going to write.

So the three of them play a kind of game of cat and mouse, chasing through alternate versions of Roxy’s own life, and Roxy has to figure out what the heck is going on, who to trust, and how to take control of the situation so she doesn’t end up with a relatively awful version of her life. And of course, there’s the matter of preventing future chaos.

Plotty deliciousness

I would particularly recommend this book for people who love plotty puzzles—even more so if you have a taste for time travel. A lot of the fun of the book is being in Roxy’s head and trying to figure out what’s going on as she does.

Now, I know in certain other texts, a lack of big picture clarity can feel annoying, like authorial withholding. But that’s not the case here at all. The puzzley part was just 100% fun. A kind of whirlwind experience where I felt this exciting sense of urgency to figure things out. Oops, one a.m.? Let me just quick read one more chapter.

The heroes

One of the more compelling parts of the mystery was which guy to trust. Both Mason and Kaysar seemed to have trustworthy moments, and both were, of course, hunky. So which is the bad guy? Author Maverick does an expert job of arranging events to make it a juicy and fun conundrum. I went back and forth a bit, but when things became clear, it made perfect sense. And I daresay I was pleased.

And while we’re on the subject of the heroes, this is not a big steamy read with disco version sex marathons, but what steam there is—and there is some—is quite nicely done.

The writing

Maybe it’s just me, but when I see anime art on the cover of a book, I never think, I am going to find some fine prose in here at the level of the sentence. Live and learn. Because the writing here was excellent, IMHO. And the voice, too.

As a first person narrator, Roxy was highly likable—strong, smart, funny, vulnerable, such a refreshing change from the badass, smartmouth chick narrators that have become so common. I mean, Roxy makes mistakes, hesitates when she’s scared. She is achingly real at times. So wonderful.

Here, early in the book, she’s in an alternate version of her life, but doesn’t realize it yet, and opens a shoebox she finds in her closet:

I sat there propped up with my elbows behind me and just stared. Two admittedly attractive black satin high heels nestled in the box alongside a handful of bullets and a gun.

Huh?

I don’t own a gun. I’ve never owned a gun. I don’t even know anybody who owns a gun.

Actually, the truth was that I couldn’t even think of too many people I knew at all, which I supposed would reduce the number of guns likely to be owned.

There was something kind of dirty about the idea of a gun in my closet, something dirty and dangerous and scary about not knowing why it as there or how it to there.

Then, after examining the gun and determining the shoes were her size.

..very carefully, I put the gun and ammunition away, fit the lid back on the box, stood up, backed out of the closet and closet the door.

Denial. It’s an important emotional stage often overlooked in favor of the others involved in traumatic situations, such as anger and acceptance. But I focused on denial as I shook my damp hair out…

The science

Overall I would say on the level of time travel, this was put together thoughtfully and even brilliantly in places, and it holds together tightly when you think back to add stuff up – not an easy feat. Time travel narratives are notoriously impossible to pull off—even Terminator had holes.

But here’s my confession: I found the book to be so exciting that I didn’t exactly kick the tires in terms of the internal logic of the world. You know, I had tiny, minor little ‘hey, what about this or that’ moments, and maybe I would’ve found the answers in the text if I’d backed up or paused to connect stuff up, but I sort of didn’t care, because the book was way too exciting and I HAD to find out the answers to my various burning questions, so I plowed on.

And really, you don’t have to be a time travel nerd or to get all hung up on the mechanics or even understand them to enjoy this very delightful read.

I’m so thankful to Book Binge for introducing me to this line, and I’m definitely going to be looking for other books by this author.

5 out of 5

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

Read more from Carolyn Jean at The Thrillonth Page.


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Review: A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux

Posted June 7, 2008 by Rowena in Reviews | 12 Comments

Review: A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude DeverauxReviewer: Holly and Rowena
A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux
Series: Montgomery/Taggert #15

Publication Date: March 27th 2012
Genres: Fiction, Romance, General, Contemporary, Fantasy, Time Travel
Pages: 416
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads

Once upon a time . . . as a fair maiden lay weeping upon a cold tombstone, her heartfelt desire was suddenly made real before her: tall, broad of shoulder, attired in gleaming silver and gold, her knight in shining armor had come to rescue his damsel in distress. . . .
A Knight in Shining Armor
Hailed worldwide as one of the most romantic novels of all time, Jude Deveraux’s dazzling bestseller “will capture your heart—and hold it” (Daily Herald, Chicago) with its breathtaking tale of lovely Dougless Montgomery; her savior knight, Nicholas Stafford, Earl of Thornwyck; and the timeless adventure of passion and memory, danger and desire that sweeps them into each other’s arms.

I saw a review for this one online a couple of days ago and got mad all over again so I’m going to resurrect this review Holly and I did over at our old blog, Sanctuary’s Finest.

Enjoy!

Rowena says:

Jude Deveraux did such a wonderful job sucking me in with Dougless Montgomery and Nicholas Stafford. I mean, Dougless wanted nothing more than a man, a good man to love and care for her enough to marry her, she strived to have a family of her own with a man who wouldn’t make her look like the insipid younger sister to her family, she didn’t want to be the laughingstock of her family which is understandable and I thought it was so sweet that she asked for a Knight in Shining Armor and got it…in the form of Elizabethan Knight, Nicholas Stafford.

Nicholas Stafford was a rascal of a hero who died long ago and WAS the laughingstock of not only his family but of England. He wanted so much to be remembered for his learning and for his architecture, but instead was remembered as a traitor to his Queen and a sexual exploit of his youth on a table. What a way to be remembered and back in the day, well in Nicholas’ day, all you had to live for was your honor.

Honor made men out of boys and Nicholas’ wanted to be remembered by his mind. He wasn’t perfect by any means (I mean come on now, you slept with a married woman for goodness sakes but still) but he did work hard to supply for his family and he did have a heart, a very big one.

I really loved Nicholas Stafford and I loved the whole story between him and Dougless, they were perfect for eachother, so bloody perfect. The ice cream scene in the kitchen? YUM! I mean, there wasn’t much to love about Dougless and Nicholas because they were both just so loveable. You wanted someone like Dougless as your friend because she cared a whole lot about those around her and she was loyal and just an all around good hearted young woman. Nicholas on the other hand, you wanted Nicholas in your bed, he was hot, he was funny and he was caring. He really was though, just a regular guy with the same goofiness as all of those guys that you can’t help but love.

I can’t tell you guys how great Jude Deveraux did with the telling of this story. The entire time you were rootin’ these two on because you wanted them to have their happy ending. Dougless was a good strong heroine who was soft hearted but worked hard for those around her and then Nicholas, you couldn’t help but fall in love with him, he was just too cute. He too, worked so hard to right the wrongs that were done to him and you really wanted him to find his happy ending…..with Dougless.

Now, JD did a wonderful job with the secondary characters too, you either loved them or you hated them. I mean, with Kit and Lady Margaret, you fell in absolute love with their characters because there was a wealth of love between these two and Nicholas. It was more than aparent that Kit had Nicholas’ back and that he loved his brother with everything, same thing with Lady Margaret, she was a great mother to the two men and she showed that love by fighting for the truth about Nicholas to save him, she was a smart cookie and the bad guys seriously underestimated her abilities to dig out the truth, she was an amazing mother and she was gracious to Dougless for saving both of her sons, I thought that was great.

Now on the flip side of the coin, we have characters like Arabella Sydney who I hated just because she was a little slut that cheated on her husband with Nicholas, stupid chit needed to keep her damn legs closed and work on her marriage to her husband, since that man was one evil ass man. Then you have Robert and Gloria, Dougless’ insufferable boyfriend and his evil spawn of a daughter. Never in my life have I wanted to hurt people more than I wanted to hurt these two, I’m serious because I wanted to stab Robert and keep stabbing him until he had more holes in him than a piece of Swiss Cheese and then I wanted to hang him by his balls and let him bleed out, ever so slowly. You don’t want to know what I wanted to do to his good for nothing little shit of a daughter.

Grrr…

So as you can see, JD did a great job with this book because she got this kind of reaction out of me, always looking on the bright side Dylan, that’s me. If a book is bad, I’ll overlook it if I enjoyed the story as a whole, oh but not this time around. Not with this book, this book infuriated me so much that I am going to burn this shit in the Burn Book pile, oh wait…I already did that, but this time I’m goign to keep it in the burn pile.

You see, as much as I loved the story, I hated the ending, the ending is what burned the book, ruined it for me, but aside from that horrendous ending, the book was FABULOUS!

Holly says:

I couldn’t agree with Dylan more. When we first meet Douglass she’s on her way to England for a vacation with her stupid cad boyfriend and his stupid, spoiled daughter, and as a reader, you want so much for her to find true love and happiness, because she’s the type that deserves it.

As a member of the overachieving Montgomery clan, Douglass has always felt inferior to the rest of her family and she truly just wants to be loved and accepted for who she is, and not reminded of the mistakes she’s made. As a woman, a sister and a mother, I totally identified with her.

When she was weeping on the steps of the church because her jerkass boyfriend had abandoned her in a foreign country, I wept with her. And when Nicholas Stafford was brought forward through time as her Knight in Shining Armor, I cried harder and wanted so much for them to be together. I cried again when Nicholas was sent back home and I prayed Douglass would find a way to be with him again.

I cheered when Douglass went back to Nicholas’ time and I was on the edge of my seat with anticipation, waiting to see how the story would unfold. Would Nicholas remember Douglass from when he was in the future? Would his family come to accuse her of being a witch? Would Nicholas fall in love with the Douglass in his time, or remember he loved her in her time? Would he still marry the psycho that got him into trouble before?

The scenes Dylan mentioned, like the ice cream scene, were amazingly told. I was completely wrapped up in this story, breathless with anticipation and almost sick to my stomach wondering how JD was going to keep these two amazing characters together. I just wanted them to have their HEA….together.

Conclusion: With Spoilers…you were warned!

View Spoiler »

Dammit. And Double Dammit. There’s no redeeming this book at all. No matter how I look at it, it sucked ass, plain and simple.

Stupid ass book!

Story: 4 Ending: 1

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


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