Archive | December 2014

Book Review: A Christmas Wish by Evie Knight

A_Christmas_WishChristmas hasn’t been the same for Dr. Jasmine Lamont ever since she lost her parents in a car accident ten years ago. She avoids romantic relationships and the holiday spirit like the plague. This year is no different and she knows exactly what she doesn’t want for Christmas: Ethan Sinclair, the sexy paediatrician, that won’t leave her alone.

Ethan isn’t one to give up easily. No matter what it takes, he’s determined to break down the walls she hides behind and heal her heart—if only she’d let him. And all it will take is a Christmas wish.

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Quote from book:  “You’d be my best mistake.” 
 A heartwarming novella, that you’ll breeze through in one sitting, A Christmas Wish, is a story of learning to heal and love again, while trying to come to terms with the grief of losing loved ones. 

With a sassy heroine and a witty hero, Evie Knight, writes fun characters that are full of sex appeal. The steamy scenes sizzled and the relationship between the characters was both sweet and humorous.  Although, I found it difficult to fully connect with Jasmine due to the lack of back story surrounding her circumstances, I feel writing an enjoyable tale in a matter of forty one pages is quite a feat to be recognized.     
         
A light, fast-paced read that one could easily enjoy the whole year round. A Christmas Wish will leave you warm and cozy. 
A 3/5 from me.
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Book Review: Round and Round by Terry Tyler

terrytylerFour Valentine cards – from four different men!

Sophie Heron’s fortieth birthday is looming, and she is fed up with her job, her relationship, her whole life – not to mention her boyfriend’s new ‘hobby’, in which she definitely doesn’t want to get involved…

Back in 1998 she had the choice of four men, and now she can’t help wondering how her life might have turned out if she’d chosen differently.

The person to whom Sophie had always been closest was her beloved Auntie Flick, her second mother, friend and advisor. Before her death in 2001, Flick said, “when I’m up there having a cuppa with St Peter, I’ll have a word with him about making me your guardian angel, shall I?”

As Sophie’s fortieth birthday draws near, she visits her aunt’s special place: a tree by a river, hidden from the world. Here she calls on Auntie Flick to show her the way forward – and help her look back into the past so she can see what might have been…

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I received this book in exchange for an honest review. An intriguing tale of the paths that life offers. What if you could go back and see the results of each path? That’s exactly what happens to Sophie on the days running up to her fortieth birthday. Seemingly trapped in a loveless long term relationship, Sophie is reminded of the time in her life when she received four Valentine cards from four different men. At that time, she had a choice to make – which man was the man for her, which man could provide a stable and solid future? But is stability really the path to choose or the cowards way out?

With the help of her deceased Aunt Flick, Sophie gets to see exactly what each choice would have resulted in. What ensues is a beautifully crafted read of chances lost and a fate sealed. I thoroughly enjoyed this novella. Terry Tyler’s animated writing sucked me into the story and there I remained until the final page, reading the whole thing in one sitting. Her charm and wit had me laughing and left me with that good kind of warmth that can only be found by reading a truly satisfying tale. As soon as I started reading I was reminded of Sophie Kinsella, because Terry Tyler’s style closely matches hers. This is a delightful and light little read that relaxes and charms and I will certainly be reading more from Terry Tyler in the future.

An easily achieved 5/5

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Book Review: Drive Me Sane by Dena Rogers

Drive-Me-Sane-CoverUnable to perform her duties in the army after a twelve-month deployment to Afghanistan that leaves her with scars no one can see, Sera Cavins returns to her hometown hoping that some time alone will help her find her way back to being the girl everyone once knew. That is, until she finds herself sharing a house with the man who left her heartbroken merely weeks before her deployment.

Tyler Creech made it to Nashville and even earned a number one hit, but being a rising country music artist isn’t as easy as he thought. He’s back in Cobb City, Kentucky, looking for something to ease the stress of his next release. He discovers it standing on his mom’s and stepdad’s lawn when Sera, the girl he once planned to marry, shows up.

They’d been perfect for each other, until the strain of Sera’s deployment and pressure of Tyler’s career drove them apart. Now with neither of their lives going the way they anticipated, both are fighting different yet similar demons.

But change is good, and sometimes going a little crazy is too. Sometimes it’s what keeps you sane.

Sensuality Level: Sensual

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Drive Me Sane is certainly not typical of your average ‘second chance romance’ trope. Both of the main characters are dealing with their fair share of problems but it’s the female protagonist, Sera, who is battling PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) that really tugged on the heart strings. How easy it would have been for the author to largely ignore or skim over the lasting effects of this illness, but she didn’t. Dena Rogers tackles the subject beautifully, providing no ‘quick-fix’ or miraculous recovery. Drive Me Sane is realistic and does an exceptional job of highlighting how devastating PTSD can be.

The characters of Sera and Tyler are well developed and the chemistry they share is so much more than that of past lovers. Tyler really cares for Sera and his compassion toward her left tear streaks on my face.

“I never wanted it easy. Easy get’s boring.”

She looked down at her hands.

He continued. “You kept me on my toes. Every minute I ever spent with you was worth it. Yes, sometimes you can be a pain in the ass, but with you, I never for a moment doubted that you loved me.”

The love that they shared never faded and the road they take to rekindle what they once lost had me intrigued, wanting to know what would happen next. Sera is traumatized and, as such, she finds it difficult to communicate, however Tyler remains patient and sympathetic but he also has the career of his dreams to worry about – a career that will take him away from Sera.

As a debut novel, Dena Rogers has a lot to be proud of. Her vivid detail, sensitivity and stellar writing resulted in a book I thoroughly enjoyed. The outstanding storytelling mixed in with solid dialogue makes this review an easy one.

An Unequivocal 5/5

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Book Review: Captivated by You by Sylvia Day

cbyGideon calls me his angel, but he’s the miracle in my life. My gorgeous, wounded warrior, so determined to slay my demons while refusing to face his own.

The vows we’d exchanged should have bound us tighter than blood and flesh. Instead they opened old wounds, exposed pain and insecurities, and lured bitter enemies out of the shadows. I felt him slipping from my grasp, my greatest fears becoming my reality, my love tested in ways I wasn’t sure I was strong enough to bear.

At the brightest time in our lives, the darkness of his past encroached and threatened everything we’d worked so hard for. We faced a terrible choice: the familiar safety of the lives we’d had before each other or the fight for a future that suddenly seemed an impossible and hopeless dream…

 

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Although Eva and Gideon finally tied the knot in book 3, I expected this book to be all about how they would proceed as a couple as well as tying up the loose ends (and there are a lot!) While indeed, some of the events were revisited, there was certainly a lack of satisfactory conclusions. Some of the events seemed to be brushed over altogether while others were nonexistent, but hopefully will be dealt with in the next book.

All fans of this series will know that the books are based heavily on the emotional growth of the two main characters however, in my view, Captivated by You sorely lacked any plot and there was very little in forward movement of the characters and how they act and feel toward each other.

The dual POV excited me, however, as much as I wanted to (and I really REALLY wanted to) I couldn’t connect with Gideon. The emotional pull just wasn’t there. I am a huge fan of dual POV, in fact when I’m hunting for my next good read this is one of the things I look for. In saying that, it did add a new dimension to the story and many were quite satisfied with the results, I just wasn’t one of them. I have loved embarking on Eva and Gideon’s journey with them and I love both of the characters however I feel the addition of Gideon’s POV could have been executed better and was detrimental to the image I held of him. I have to say, I missed being inside Eva’s head.

There were elements to the story that I loved. We get to find out a bit more about the aftermath of the events that changed Gideon when he was younger leading to an explosive moment that was written beautifully. We also gain a better understanding of why Gideon behaves the way he does.  In addition to this we are given a better insight into Gideon’s friends, which is just a nice touch. There are also some really fun scenes that I enjoyed and would like more of in the next book. I took great pleasure in reading the moments where they were surrounded by their friends, having fun, without the doom and gloom.

As the 4th installment in the Crossfire series, I had high expectations for this novel. I loved the previous three – devoured them, and waited patiently for this book to be released. However, I am sad to say that I was disappointed but I am hopeful that book 5 will be of the same quality as 1, 2 and 3. As with all my reviews, this is entirely subjective.

A heavyhearted 3/5

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Book Review: Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan

 

 

AVWhen Bree Prescott arrives in the sleepy, lakeside town of Pelion, Maine, she hopes against hope that this is the place where she will finally find the peace she so desperately seeks. On her first day there, her life collides with Archer Hale, an isolated man who holds a secret agony of his own. A man no one else sees.

Archer’s Voice is the story of a woman chained to the memory of one horrifying night and the man whose love is the key to her freedom. It is the story of a silent man who lives with an excruciating wound and the woman who helps him find his voice. It is the story of suffering, fate, and the transformative power of love.

 

 

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Fueled by grief and haunted by flashbacks of the incident that devastated her, Bree flees to Pelion, a small town with a host of interesting characters. There, Bree attempts to begin the slow process of healing. It’s not long before a chance meeting in a parking lot begins the series of events that will not only aid her recovery but lead her into the arms of an equally tormented soul.

Archer Hale is a recluse and the town pariah, only leaving the security of his home when absolutely necessary. Tormented by the loss of everyone he’s ever cared for and still bearing the consequences of the night that shattered his life, Archer is truly alone.

Archer’s voice is quite possibly one of the most beautiful books I have ever had the pleasure of reading. The budding friendship between Bree and Archer is absolutely heartwarming. Bree is a kind soul and her character is easy to love. She’s the kind of girl that makes her own mind up about things, despite what others say. She’s smart, caring and loyal and I really found myself deep in her emotions. Archer – oh, where can I start with Archer? He’s been battered, broken and thoroughly destroyed by the events in his life. Despite everything he’s been through his soul remains angelic. He feels undeserving of happiness and has resigned himself to a life completely and utterly alone.

When Bree and Archer meet, at first Archer is guarded and unwilling to accept that anyone would want to befriend him. Bree’s tenacity soon breaks through his resolve and the foundations to their recovery are laid. The pair face many obstacles, however their unrelenting love for each other becomes a fierce weapon, capable of striking down whoever gets in their way. But Archer’s unwillingness to accept that he’s worthy of anyone’s affections threatens to become the biggest problem of all.

“I want to be able to love you more than I fear losing you, and I don’t know how,” he choked. “Teach me Bree. Please teach me. Don’t let me destroy this.”

The inspirational journey of Bree and Archer’s love left me smiling and crying in equal measure. Mia’s writing is exquisite and I felt every moment of joy and pain along with Archer and Bree.  Her flawless creation of two equally tortured yet compassionate souls pierced my heart in a way that had me hiding under the duvet in the dark with a box of tissues, desperate to find out what happened next. There is no doubt that this book is an emotional roller-coaster that will, at times, leave you devastated, but the crisp beauty and the soul baring dual points of view provide every incentive to continue following Archer and Bree on their journey. Mia will break your heart, then she’ll put it back together only to break it once more. I don’t include spoilers in my reviews, but trust me, you will want to read every last word and when the time comes for you to say your goodbye’s to the two scarred lovers, you just won’t want to. Mia’s unequivocally stunning writing will seep into your soul and rest there for a long time after you’ve read those two words ‘The End’.

An easy 5/5 rating.

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