Author: Carly Phillips

Review: Anthology – Santa Baby

Posted December 27, 2017 by Holly in Reviews | 3 Comments

Review: Anthology – Santa BabyReviewer: Holly
Santa, Baby by Jennifer Crusie, Carly Phillips, Lori Foster
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication Date: October 31st 2006
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 328
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Get ready for a holiday season you'll never forget with three of today's most sensational writers who know what every woman wants for the holidays. You'll believe in Santa all over again with these seductive stories from: JENNIFER CRUSIEMayhem ensues under the mistletoe as a determined shopper grabs the very last hot toy action figure off the shelf, only to find herself plunged into the middle of a real-life spy game--in the arms of a sexy secret agent. . . LORI FOSTERTwo dedicated coworkers with a lot of secrets (and fantasies!) between them must plan a Christmas party side by side--and discover a love worth celebrating--in this steamy office romance. CARLY PHILLIPSA "mistletoe moment" begins when a no-nonsense lawyer intent on seducing her boss meets his twin instead--after giving him a scintillating kiss that leaves him begging for more. . .

*****As part of our 10 year anniversary celebration, we’ll be re-posting old reviews and posts that make us cringe, laugh or sigh all over again.*****

Holly: I love holiday anthologies. I would say 92% of my holiday reads come in the form of anthos.

This post was originally published January 6, 2009

I bought this anthology because the Jennifer Crusie was one I hadn’t read before and she’s one of my favorite authors. So I’m sure you can imagine my surprise when her entry turned out to be my least favorite of them all.


Mayhem ensues under the mistletoe as a determined shopper grabs the very last hot toy action figure off the shelf, only to find herself plunged into the middle of a real-life spy game—in the arms of a sexy secret agent. . .

Believe it or not my big issue with this story was the hero. Shocking, I know, since generally it’s the heroines I have trouble with. Trudy is out looking for a toy for her nephew when she runs into Nolan, a man she dated for awhile. A man she thought was different. A man she thought might be the one. Until their 4th date when he took a call, said he’d be back and just disappeared. His reasons for doing so seemed suspect in the beginning, and unfortunately were still suspect at the end – meaning I didn’t really buy his excuse.

Having said that, a less than stellar novel from Jenny Crusie is still better than some super stellar novels by other authors. I found the novella to have her trademark sass and humor and I really enjoyed Trudy and her sister. I even liked Nolan apart from his situation with Trudy.

Overall a fun, well-written story that probably needed a bit more depth to make it work a little better for me.

3.5 out of 5

Christmas Bonus by LORI FOSTER

Two dedicated coworkers with a lot of secrets (and fantasies!) between them must plan a Christmas party side by side—and discover a love worth celebrating—in this steamy office romance.

Lori Foster tends to be really hit or miss for me. I think I probably love 2 out of every 5 books of hers I read. This definitely falls into the “love” category. It was a sweet, cute story. Maggie and Eric have been attracted to each other for ages but age – and Maggie’s father, Eric’s boss – kept them separated. When they’re forced to work together planning a holiday party things quickly heat up.

The chemistry here really worked for me and the story – while short – really had some great emotional depth. I really enjoyed it.

4.0 out of 5

Naughty Under the Mistletoe by CARLY PHILLIPS

A “mistletoe moment” begins when a no-nonsense lawyer intent on seducing her boss meets his twin instead—after giving him a scintillating kiss that leaves him begging for more. . .

Carly Phillips, like Lori Foster, is an author that’s really hit or miss for me. Something about her writing style bugs me, though I’ve never been able to put my finger on just what. But, like Foster’s entry, this one really worked for me. Actually, this may be my favorite of the collection.

Something about Max and Toni really worked for me. Maybe it was her playing Elf and Max falling like a ton of bricks. Or maybe it was Max being super sexy and Toni falling for him like a ton of bricks. Either way, it as cute and I enjoyed it.

I did have an issue with the ending. I’m not really sure I buy them being head-over-heels in love after one night. I guess on a pure fantasy level it worked, but I definitely had to suspend disbelief. Otherwise it was great.

4.0 out of 5

Overall a cute collection of stories.

Total Grade: 4 out of 5

This book is available from St. Martin’s Press. You can buy it here.

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Lightning Review: Serendipity by Carly Phillips

Posted March 21, 2016 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Lightning Review: Serendipity by Carly PhillipsReviewer: Holly
Serendipity by Carly Phillips
Series: Serendipity #1
Publisher: Penguin
Publication Date: September 6th 2011
Genres: Fiction
Pages: 304
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Series Rating: four-stars

Faith Harrington is a classic girl of privilege-until her father is convicted for running a Ponzi scheme. Now she's back in her hometown, where she runs into her teenage crush-dark, brooding Ethan Barron, who's no stranger to scandal himself.

This was a sweet contemporary romance. Ethan was a bad boy in high school. When his family needed him most he disappeared. Now he’s back and looking to make amends. Faith was the golden girl growing up but the mighty have fallen..hard. She’s looking to rebuild her life after her father was arrested for his part in a ponzi scheme that affected a lot of the town. Together they have enough issues to fill a warehouse, but they just might be what the other needs…

I really liked how well Ethan and Faith fit. I also liked that they didn’t gloss over or make light of their issues. Both were willing to accept responsibility for their own actions, both past and present. I really love it when characters own their mistakes and work to atone for them.

I did think Faith took things a little too far in the end, but overall I enjoyed the story and the romance.

3.5 out of 5


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Review: Perfect Fling by Carly Phillips

Posted July 27, 2014 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Perfect Fling by Carly PhillipsReviewer: Holly
Perfect Fling by Carly Phillips
Series: Serendipity's Finest #2
Publisher: Penguin
Publication Date: July 30th 2013
Genres: Fiction
Pages: 336
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Series Rating: four-stars

Dear Readers:
Thank you for loving the small town of Serendipity. Because of you, I’m able to continue what I started…and introduce you to Serendipity’s Finest—the cops of Serendipity…
Best wishes, Carly

In the picturesque town of Serendipity, New York, three siblings have grown up in the shadow of their proud and respected police chief father. But what do love, fate, and fortune have in store for the next generation of Serendipity’s finest?
Assistant D.A. Erin Marsden is Serendipity’s quintessential good girl. The daughter of the ex–police chief, she’s never made a misstep, content with her quiet, predictable life...or so she thinks. Until Cole Sanders shows up with heated interest in his eyes and shadows in his past.
After seven years of deep undercover work in New York, Cole returns to town to help his aging father and find his moral compass again. Not to get involved with wholesome Erin Marsden. Even as a rebellious teen, he knew a girl like Erin was off limits. But neither can resist their off-the-charts chemistry, and a one-night stand brings complications neither expected.
Then a case puts Erin in a killer’s crosshairs, and Erin succumbs to Cole’s take-charge attitude. As a bodyguard, he’s the best. As a lover, he’s even better. But there’s more than Erin’s safety at stake. And Cole must forgive the sins of his past and prove to himself—and to Erin—that he’s capable of the love and the forever she so desperately needs.

I needed to take a break from small town romance for awhile so I didn’t read this when it was first released. I’m glad I did, because I was able to appreciate the story in a way I wouldn’t have a few months ago.

Cole and Erin had a one-night-stand.  She wouldn’t have minded more, but Cole made it clear that’s all he was interested in. Until she was shot and he found out she was pregnant.  Now he wants nothing more than to keep her and their baby safe.

Forced to live together for safety, neither can deny their attraction.  They embark on an affair, but Cole makes it clear he’s not interested in a long term relationship.  He wants to be involved with his child, but he works undercover and knows that’s no life for a wife.

Erin would prefer to make her own decisions about what’s best for her, but she realizes early on Cole is too stubborn to let her. She makes a play for him, hoping they’ll have a future together,  but quickly realizes he isn’t going to budge.

Cole’s feelings were so all over the place even he didn’t know what he wanted. The mixed signals he was sending were enough to confuse anyone. Erin was quick to call him out when he said one thing but acted in a conflicting manor. It was good to see her push,  since that was clearly what he needed. Seeing the way his father was with it, plus factoring in his job, made his actions understandable. I don’t know if I’d have been so forgiving if Erin had let him get away with blowing hot and cold, but as it stands I was able to relate.

Erin was an optimist who could have become annoying,  but she had a temper that balanced out her innate goodness. She wasn’t perfect, but she owned her flaws and mistakes.  She was established in her career, had good friends and tight family bonds and wasn’t afraid to stand on her own two feet. She was a little mixed up about Cole – and who wouldn’t be with all his mixed signals? – but overall she was a great character.

They had a good support system. Many characters from past books showed up, but not in an obtrusive way.

The town of Serendipity is one I’d like to live in and its inhabitants people I could call friends. Phillips really drew me into her world and made me want to stay.

4.25 out of 5

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


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Review: Hot Item by Carly Phillips

Posted April 27, 2008 by Rowena in Reviews | 2 Comments

Review: Hot Item by Carly PhillipsReviewer: Rowena
Hot Item by Carly Phillips
Series: Hot Zone #3
Also in this series: Hot Stuff, Hot Number

Publication Date: June 1st 2006
Pages: 384
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Series Rating: four-stars

He'll push all her boundaries and make her realize rules are made to be broken.

Cool, collected Sophie Jordan loves her daily routine running her family's top sports management agency, as long as she gets to stay behind the scenes. But with big sister on maternity leave and little sis on her honeymoon, she's forced to step up to the plate. And a recent media crisis surrounding the disappearance of super-agent Spenser Atkins is not going to make the job any easier.

Enter star quarterback and notorious bad boy Riley Nash who, for reasons of his own, needs to track down Atkins. Up until now, Sophie has kept a strict no-dating-clients policy, but each day with Riley makes her rule near impossible to follow. With her job and her heart on the line, Sophie will need to make the toughest choice of her life!

Sophie is the last Jordan sister who needs her happy ending and she finally gets hers not too long after Micki got hers. She has an insane crush on Footballer Riley Nash of the New York Giants and even though she hates athletes, Riley has gotten under her skin and she’s so hot damn attracted to him that it bugs the heck out of her.

They take a trip to Florida to find his biological father and her partner who has gone missing, Spencer Atkins.

Their journey to finding love with each other was a pleasant story to read. I loved watching Sophie’s personality shine through in her book. The whole controlling thing didn’t bother me as much as I thought it would and I enjoyed reading about her falling in love with Riley and more importantly (for me atleast) to see Riley falling in love with Sophie.

I loved when Riley realized that he was indeed in love with Sophie. I thought it was so sweet. He was a fantastic hero, one who was kind, caring and outrageously gorgeous. He’s an athlete too and I’ve got such a soft spot for athletes. I loves his relationship with Lizzie and I loved how he learned from his mistakes and he wasn’t a butt head and stubborn (like Yank) when he was wrong.

Sophie was a fabulous heroine and I enjoyed her very much. She wasn’t this pushover heroine that got on my nerves, she was what she was and I loved how Riley accepted her for it. He loved her despite all of her retarded little quirks like her incessant need to control everyone’s lives.

It was sweet.

This book was sweet, fun and cute. I totally recommend it. This is my second favorite in the series, Hot Number being my most favorite!


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Review: Hot Number by Carly Phillips

Posted April 27, 2008 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Hot Number by Carly PhillipsReviewer: Rowena
Hot Number by Carly Phillips
Series: Hot Zone #2
Also in this series: Hot Stuff, Hot Item
Publisher: HQN
Publication Date: August 1st 2005
Pages: 378
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Series Rating: four-stars

Micki Jordan is a tomboy as much at home on the playing field as in a locker room full of naked guys.

But the star publicist is looking to prove she’s also an irresistible woman in order to get a second shot at professional baseball player and major league playboy, Damian Fuller.

Micki transforms herself into one hot number Damian can’t help but notice and together they burn up the sheets and find themselves falling hard. Until Damian’s past returns, threatening their future.

This book was definitely on my TBR list and has been since that memorable day that I stood in Wal Mart trying unsuccessfully to have any kind of conversation with Grace, whom was visiting from her far away homeland of Australia. I have Carly Phillips to blame for stealing precious time away from Grace’s first trip to the states to visit myself and our friends. She was so engrossed in this book and after finishing the book myself last night, I completely understand why she was so wrapped up in it.

Now, I should add that the reason I’m just barely getting around to reading this series is because I have been very wary of trying anything new by Carly Phillips (and by new, I mean new to me) because I haven’t been “wowed” by Carly Phillips yet. I mean, I’ve only read one of her other books and that was the first book in The Chandler Brother’s series, Roman’s story. I think it was called The Bachelor and though I liked it well enough, it didn’t have enough of a pull for me to think “Wow that was a great book” but I thought it would get better as the series progressed but then I never finished Rick’s book. It was the first book that I never finished and to this day, almost 3 years later, I STILL haven’t finished that book. So I never got around to reading Chase’s book which I hear is the best book and a favorite among CP fans.

But I can finally say that Carly Phillips has wowed me.

The storyline behind this book isn’t a new storyline, it wasn’t fresh, it wasn’t something that I haven’t read before but none of that mattered to me while reading this book. Carly Phillips did a wonderful job writing this book.

I absolutely LOVE this kind of storyline and Carly Phillips delivered a great rendition to the ol’ Aging Athlete denying the end of his career and tomboy unsure of her worth as a woman. Damien Fuller was a memorable hero and Micki was a fantastic heroine! The storyline didn’t drag at all and it was just fun, light and very fulfilling. A truly great read!

Ya’ll should definitely pick this book and give it a whirl, I’m so glad I did!


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