Tag Archives: ARC

The Charmer’s Gambit (Mershano Empire #2)

By Lexi C Foss

Synopsis

He set his sights on the wrong girl.
Me.

Law school taught me a lot of things, but nothing prepared me to deal with this determined, hotter-than-Hell millionaire. Don’t get me wrong, I’m flattered. But resisting Will Mershano is harder than passing the bar. He’s everything: sexy, confident, intelligent. And he wants me.

When he hires my firm to represent Mershano Vineyards, I’m left with no choice but to work right alongside him—or forfeit my job. There’s only one problem. He doesn’t know about my past or how it stalks me at every turn. All he wants is a little flirtatious fun, but Will’s playing a dangerous game.

And there’s more at stake than just my heart. . .

**Although this book is part of a series, it is a standalone novel that can be enjoyed without reading the other Mershano Empire books**

Review

I have not read the first book and you do not need to, this is standalone. Will Mershano hooked me from the first chapter. He has this remarkable strength and integrity and when you meet Rachel you know he will be her warrior in the end.

The build-up with Ryan playing his games is intense and I was simply so stressed as each chapter progresses as you know there is going to be some explosive moments in this story.

Chapter 16 is a standout when the dynamic changes between Will and Rachel and his perceptiveness that something is amiss in Rachel’s life.

The author wove a tale of taking a chance on new love despite barriers no woman wants to endure.  The first half of this book I was on tenterhooks waiting for the past to collide with her future.

Will was perfect for her, his ability to read her body language and slowly bring her to the belief she could face her demons with his trust was brilliant.

So many moments of happiness in this book but also despair that made you appreciate the light.  Rachel was so intelligent and her banter with Will in the professional sense was integral to this story and their growth as a couple.

Towards the end when her brother and his friend join the story it definitely made me want to continue the journey with all these characters. Upon finishing I immediately went and added the next two books in this series along with a new story on Kincaid.

Charmer’s Gambit (Mershano Emire #2)

My Rating:  

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So Over You (Chicago Rebels # 2)

By Kate Meader

Synopsis

Isobel Chase knows hockey. She played NCAA, won Olympic silver, and made it thirty-seven minutes into the new National Women’s Hockey League before an injury sidelined her dreams. Those who can’t, coach, and a position as a skating consultant to her late father’s hockey franchise, the Chicago Rebels, seems like a perfect fit. Until she’s assigned her first job: the man who skated into her heart as a teen and relieved her of her pesky virginity. These days, left-winger Vadim Petrov is known as the Czar of Pleasure, a magnet for puck bunnies and the tabloids alike. But back then… let’s just say his inability to sink the puck left Isobel frustratingly scoreless.

Vadim has a first name that means “ruler,” and it doesn’t stop at his birth certificate. He dominates on the ice, the practice rink, and in the backseat of a limo. But a knee injury has produced a bad year, and bad years in the NHL don’t go unrewarded. His penance? To be traded to a troubled team where his personal coach is Isobel Chase, the woman who drove him wild years ago when they were hormonal teens. But apparently the feeling was not entirely mutual.

That Vadim might have failed to give Isobel the pleasure that was her right is intolerable, and he plans to make it up to her—one bone-melting orgasm at a time. After all, no player can perfect his game without a helluva lot of practice…

Review

SO OVER YOU is the second book in the Chicago Rebels series—third if you include the prequel novella—and I was really looking forward to this second-chance romance between Vadim and Isobel.  After getting a taste of their story at the end of the previous book, I was certainly intrigued.

Sadly, I didn’t feel much of a connection between Vadim and Isobel and, to be honest, the anger they both felt towards the other was unwarranted.  Isobel is angry at Vadim because he now has a reputation of pleasing the ladies, but he didn’t give her an orgasm the one time they had sex when they were teens and she was a virgin.  Vadim is angry at Isobel because her father kept him from playing in the NHL for years after he caught them together, even though he knows she had absolutely nothing to do with her father’s actions.  Both of them are also guilty of unapologetically interfering in the other’s life without discussion or consideration…for their own good.  They act out of love, but both situations could have been handled so much better and in a much less controlling way.

So it might sound like I didn’t enjoy SO OVER YOU, but I actually did, though my favourite parts of the story didn’t have anything to do with Vadim and Isobel as a couple.  I enjoyed watching the sisters interact and continue to forge their relationships, although we didn’t see as much of it in this book as we did the previous book.  I hope we’ll see more in Violet’s book.  I enjoyed how we were set up for the next story, which will be about Dante (the team’s GM) and Cade (one of the players).  A M/M boss/employee hockey romance?  Yes please!  I enjoyed the side story about Vadim and his mother, who have been separated for fifteen years.  Their interactions were heartbreaking and the most emotional part of this story.

SO OVER YOU is told in dual POVs, and while it’s part of a series, it can be read as a stand-alone.  It comes with a HEA for Vadim and Isobel, as well as a HFN ending for the Chicago Rebels.

So Over You (Chicago Rebels # 2)

My Rating:  

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Chicago Rebels Series

Marked for Death

By J C Valentine

Synopsis

Tiffany
Leading a nomadic life, I’ve been on the run from my rich ex-husband for years. I’ve learned every trick in the book, staying one step ahead of him and his trackers. He’s taken everything from me, and despite everything, I’ve managed to carve out a life. But he’s getting close again. It’s time to hit the road, to start over…but it looks like the universe has other plans.

Ryder
As Sargent at Arms, stalking the crazy man trying to kill my MC brothers is part of my job description. Protecting the club is what I live for. Unfortunately, today I’m the loser in our never ending game of cat and mouse. The last thing I remember before waking up in the emergency room is staring up at the sky while bleeding out onto the cold, hard pavement. Then the pretty nurse walks in and turns my world sideways, and those soft hands know just how to handle a big, angry biker like me. With a psycho on my tail, the stakes couldn’t be higher. I know I should walk away, but self-preservation has never been much of a strong suit. As my enemy closes in, I’ve got no gun, three bullet holes, and absolutely zero patience left. The question is, who will be the one to sign my death warrant—the crazy-ass biker who’s gunning for me…or the sexy-as-sin nurse I’ve got a hard-on for?

Review

A quick read that held me captive from the first page.  It ended far too soon for my liking.  I read this story in a day and could not put it down.

The chemistry between the two main characters provides moments of humour, passion, and friendship.  From their initial meeting to moving forward together covers around five or so days so it is intense.  Due to individual circumstances, they are both wanderers.  It was interesting for them both to realize they had found someone to have their back and heart.

Ryder owned every scene and he was such a strong presence particularly in his interactions with Tiffany.  Their time at the hospital and then, in particular, the cabin was highly entertaining.

Firstly there are two stories within this, one for Ryder and one for Tiffany.  The author neatly tied up Ryder’s story.  However, I am left slightly disappointed that Tiffany’s personal story is not fully explained.

In conclusion, I am so intrigued by her background that I will be waiting with baited breathe for her past and future to clash.

Marked for Death

My Rating:  

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Van (Cold Fury Hockey # 9)

By Sawyer Bennett

Synopsis

Score one for the Carolina Cold Fury hockey team as a stone-cold badass melts for a woman who makes his blood run hot.

As one of the league’s toughest enforcers, Van Turner is ruthless on the ice. He plays hard because it’s the only way to channel the rage boiling inside, and a reputation as an A-hole is better than everyone knowing the truth. Van has spent his entire life running from a secret that’s kept him from getting involved in relationships—or accepting lucrative deals with East Coast teams. Then the Carolina Cold Fury makes him an offer he can’t refuse . . . and Van meets a woman he can’t resist.

Simone Fournier is the stubborn one in her family—and that’s saying something, considering her brothers are two of the Cold Fury’s biggest stars. Simone gets what she wants, and what she wants is Van. Still, there’s a part of him Simone can’t reach, no matter how hard she tries. In private, he’s all fire and passion. In public, he freezes her out. Van may want to push her away, but Simone won’t let him go that easily. Because this time, she’s playing for keeps.

Review

After meeting Van in LUCAS, I was very curious about him and wanted to read his story.  Though I’m not sure why, because he was rude and not likeable at all, but something about him caught my attention.  Spoiler alert, he’s still rude in this book, but overall I liked him.  When you hear about what happened in his past and the demons that still follow him today, it’s no wonder he is the way he is.

While I liked Van, I can’t say the same for Simone, and for two main reasons.  Firstly, she’s very sexually aggressive towards Van.  I’m all for women owning their sexuality and going after what they want, but she wouldn’t take no for an answer and her behaviour honestly made me uncomfortable.  Secondly, I found her to be contradictory on a few occasions, the biggest example is when it came to her relationship with Van.  She says she’ll be patient, that she’ll happily take whatever he can give her and that she’ll always be there, but just a few hours later she’s doubting him and then leaves him the very next day.  Her only saving grace is that she did stand by Van when she learnt of his past, when most people probably would have walked—or run—away.

VAN is told in dual POVs, comes with a HEA for Van and Simone, and while it’s part of a series, it can be read as a stand-alone.  I am disappointed that this is the second Cold Fury story in a row where I haven’t liked the lead female character, and I hope this isn’t a theme that will continue.  That being said, despite not liking Simone—and thinking the blowjob scene with a sweaty Van right after he finished mowing the lawn was gross—I did like VAN.  I enjoyed reading it and it easily held my attention, which lately has been a hard thing to do.

Van (Cold Fury Hockey # 9)

My Rating:  

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Cold Fury Hockey Series

Daddy’s Home

By Zoe Blake

Synopsis

No one escapes their past.
Two years ago she ran, but now he has found her.
He will make her pay for her past mistakes.
Trapped alone in a cabin with him, there is no hope for rescue or redemption.
He wants information and refuses to believe she doesn’t have the answers he seeks.
He’s willing to do anything…anything…to break her.
And he will get what he wants.

Review

Daddy’s Home is a quick and very decadent read, a bit longer than a normal novella.  By saying that it means we got much more of a story along with the instant attraction.

Logan manipulates and controls Chloe in a dark and very sensual way.  It definitely hits all the right spots.

Due to having a hard life growing up, Chloe is very young at heart.  Despite her love of all things youthful, she had a darkness and strong sensuality.

Chloe’s past connections in her short life have been dangerous and they provide the drama and mystery.

Also, I really connected to Chloe from the first few pages, she was a loner for so long she needed to be cared for and Logan was perfect.

Finally, Daddy’s Home is finished off nicely and I was satisfied and could have read so much more on this couple.

Daddy’s Home

My Rating:  

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Max (House of Payne #6)

By Stacy Gail

Synopsis

Chicago’s premiere tattoo studio, House Of Payne, is across the street from the Mad Cow diner, but it might as well be on another planet as far as waitress Paradise Simone is concerned. She’s a good girl from Waukegan with a past she’d rather forget, and a future that goes only as far as the next day. What does she know about superstars and paparazzi?

But Pari does know danger when she sees it, and tattooist Max Kulagin has it written all over him. A proper Waukegan girl should know to steer well clear, but she can’t resist Max when he leaves beautiful, intimate art sketched out on cheap diner napkins.

Beautiful, intimate art…of her.

Max knows ugliness. He was born in it. Raised in it. Had it shoved down his throat every goddamn day. So when he stumbles across true beauty, he worships it. There’s a deep sensuality in the waitress who likes to suck on her pen whenever he’s around, and he’s just the man to bring that beauty out in her. She might be a lady in the street, but one look at Pari tells him she’s going to be a freak in the bed.

And in the shower.

And while he’s driving with her head going to town in his lap.

The life Max leads might be in the spotlight, but it’s Pari who gets caught in the glare. When her past catches up to her, it’s her life that holds all the excitement, and not in a good way. But there’s no force on earth that can take Max’s beautiful Paradise away now that he’s finally found it.

Review

Max is book 6 of the House of Payne series and is a stand-alone. I have not read the other books as yet. You do not have to read the others to enjoy this, House of Payne provides merely a backdrop to Pari and Max’s love story.

Pari is a beautiful character and her relationship with her sister is portrayed in an honest and realistic way.  The sister’s complicated history is what has brought Pari’s to her current life in hiding.

Maxi is wonderful, he is protective yet brash in the way he eventually gets Pari to soften her armour.  He persists with his desire for her and allows her to find her heart and hope again.

There is actually plenty of humour in this story which is surprising.  It is placed at moments that are perfect to the flow of the story.

Max and Pari’s sex scenes are aplenty and they are varied and very enjoyable to read, he is definitely dominant in that respect.

This story is concluded as all readers wish, you get to see them into the future and they are simply a wonderful couple to read about.

Quote:  “Happiness. Belonging. Family” “I see forever in you”

Max (House of Payne #6)

My Rating:  

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House of Payne Series:  Click Here

Savage

By L.A. Fiore

Synopsis

They call him a monster.
Pale blue eyes as cold as ice that see right through you.
He’s hard.
He’s damaged.
He’s dangerous.
He lives in a castle fit for a fairy tale, but he’s no prince.
He’s savage.
He’s brutal.
He’s a killer.
By an act of fate, our worlds collide.
They call him a monster, but he is my salvation.

Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18. 

Review

Firstly, I loved Savage, it was a fantastic story of romance, darkness, traumatic events and redemption.  It was imperative to know both characters history as their connection made total sense.

Savage has a strong and solid mystery element to it’s story which I loved along with all the connections that are revealed at the end. Consequently, I could not stop turning the pages of this story, the pacing for me was good.

Lizzie was simply an amazing character.  The storyline around her painting and how it provided her source of strength and beauty in her life was soothing. She had an ability to break down barriers and she did that with Brogan. As a result, she gave him love and he became the wolf at her door.

A favourite supporting character who became a warrior was Lizzie’s father. Further, when her father and Brogan joined forces to stand strong for her, he redeemed himself in my eyes.

Brogan was perfection in my eyes, alpha protective and so smart. While Brogan was dominant, his interactions with supporting characters showed he had empathy and love to give.

Finally, this story has it all, romance, mystery, suspense and passionate scenes. I was not ready to leave these characters and the author’s epilogue allows us to see their happy ever after.

Quote:  “You’re scary, intimidating too, but I know a kindred spirit when I see one. Life hasn’t been very kind to either of us.”

Savage

My Rating:  

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Close To Heaven (Colorado High Country # 5)

By Pamela Clare

Synopsis

She has nothing…

Rain Minear has fantasized about finding herself in Joe Moffat’s arms for years. It’s just her luck that the night it finally happens, he’s carrying her into the emergency room. It’s Joe who steps up to help her when a tragedy brings her life crashing down. He gives her a place to stay, helps her get back on her feet, and even tries to save her Christmas, though he’s never cared for the holiday. But he’s far too ethical to sleep with a member of his staff, holding her at arms length despite the long-simmering attraction between them.

He has everything…

Haunted by ghosts from the past, Joe Moffat moved to Scarlet Springs to repay a debt. He’s struggled for years to keep his hands off Rain. She’s the general manager of his brewpub, and he is not that kind of boss. But, oh, she turns him on. More than that, she has the biggest heart of any woman he’s ever known. He’d do anything to see her smile again, even put up a Christmas tree and listen to carols, things he normally never does.

A season that changes two lives forever…

When a Rocky Mountain blizzard leaves them snowbound and alone together for days, they can no longer ignore their feelings for one another. As their passion turns to something deeper, it becomes clear to them both that this will be the most important Christmas of their lives.

Review

Luckily, the author didn’t mention in the blurb exactly how long Joe and Rain had secretly been in love with each other, because if she had, I probably wouldn’t have read it.  Why?  Because I’d just finished reading another book where the main characters were secretly in love with each other for twenty years, and it left me very frustrated.  Thankfully, and despite that similarity, CLOSE TO HEAVEN was a nice, easy and enjoyable read.

I liked Joe, who moved to Scarlet Springs two decades ago to try and pay back the town for his great-great-grandfather’s misdeeds.  He’s a very wealthy man, but he’s down-to-earth and he doesn’t act like he’s better than everyone else just because of his money.  The only thing that bothered me was his main reason for not pursuing Rain.  There’s a big difference between using your position of power to take advantage of women in your employ, and taking what is being freely offered by a woman in her thirties.  

I liked Rain, who’s been working for Joe since she became a single mother at seventeen.  She’s been in love with him since almost the beginning, but she never made a move because she was afraid of being rejected.  What I liked most about her is that she truly did not care that Joe was rich, and that she finally got the courage to put herself out there in her attempts to gain Joe’s attention.

An interesting part of the story was the reading Silas’ journals, where we learnt how despicable Joe’s great-great-grandather truly was, as well as the history of the town and its descendants, who still live there to this day.  You’ll be surprised by how much hate you’ll feel for a man who’s been dead for a century.

CLOSE TO HOME is told in dual POVs and while it’s part of a series, it can be read as a stand-alone.  It comes with a beautiful HEA for Joe and Rain, and is a nice addition to the Colorado High Country series.

Close To Heaven (Colorado High Country # 5)

My Rating:  

Buy Links:  Amazon | iBooks

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Colorado High Country Series

Bulletproof Butterfly

By Anna Brooks

Synopsis

I wasn’t a rookie, but I made a mistake because I was selfish, impulsive, and headstrong.

I was also in love.

My desire for her overwhelmed me. Consumed me. Distracted me.

To protect her, I stood motionless as my partner pried her from the security of my arms. I watched as she fought his hold. I even listened when she screamed that she hated me.

For years I’ve been patient, I’ve been smart, and I’ve gone by the book. But now… it’s finally over.

It’s time to get my girl back.

Review

Firstly, I love the cover of Bulletproof Butterfly, it is so Jay and I could imagine this guy throughout the whole story.

Livvie’s journey is highly confronting, her depth of despair will have you questioning how you would cope, she was inspiring to me.

Jay I fell in and out of love with as this story progressed, he did lose me in the middle of the story.  I cannot pinpoint why, however i was emotionally invested in Livvie and she was hurting and I blamed Jay when I should not have.

I have to say I struggled with the pace until around chapter 10 and then I was hooked and could not put this down.  Livvie was an amazing character and her emotional strength kept me turning the pages.  To be able to follow her process her immense feelings of loneliness, anger and fear broke my heart many times.  At times I became frustrated with the story continually returning to before Livvie was forced to leave Jay, in hindsight, it was probably because I was eager for them to reunite.

I am very much looking forward to reading Opal and Ryan’s story, that was a lovely addition.

Quote:  I feel betrayed, lonely, scared. Just …. all the things. I have never been this mad before.

Bulletproof Butterfly

My Rating:  

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Double Trouble

By Sierra Cartwright

Synopsis

One love. One obsession. Double the trouble.

This time, he won’t take no for an answer.

For three years, Daniel Armstrong has wanted the beautiful, fiery Bridget Kelly. But when he sees her at Houston’s premier BDSM club and realizes she has an interest in submission, his determination reignites. A charity auction provides a means for him to possess her and do good at the same time. Who could resist? Focused solely on Bridget and the decadent delights he intends for her, he outbids everyone to claim her.

Helpless, trapped by the glare of a spotlight at an auction she never agreed to participate in, Bridget is stunned when bidding for a weekend with her goes higher and higher.

She’s frantic when she realizes the gorgeous, successful Daniel Armstrong has won her. For years, she’s been attracted to the renowned heartbreaker, but she’s kept him at a distance to protect herself.

Then one night, she sees him at a BDSM club, and there’s no doubt he recognizes her submissive tendencies. Now that the devastating Dom knows her naughty desires, she’s doubly determined to avoid him.

When he claims her, she believes things can’t get worse. Then he introduces her to his identical twin, Jacob. Suddenly, she’s faced with not one, but two men determined to make her every fantasy come true and take her to the heights of submission.

Review

Double Trouble I thought had everything that would make a hot, steamy and highly connected menage romance. Twin brothers and a stubborn and independent woman having a wild weekend away together.

Whilst I enjoyed the overall story I have to admit that I found it hard to connect to the leading lady, Bridget. There was a moment in chapter 11 where she showed her depth of emotion and feeling for the guys and I was thought we were finally turning a corner. She was devastated with the way Daniel ended the weekend and I too felt incredibly sad for her.

The guys Jacob and Daniel were characters easy to connect with and their brotherly banter was a favourite part.

The story flowed very quickly, perhaps too much towards the end as it did feel slightly rushed. I would have enjoyed seeing how these three business people moved forward in their lives together juggling their BDSM lifestyle.

Being a BDSM story there was plenty of intense erotic scenes however I felt there was not enough after care. Perhaps that is where we may have seen more emotional connection between the characters. I really wanted Daniel and Jacob to show more loving care to Bridget and not all the time their Dom tendencies.

If you are looking for a quick and easy BDSm read you will enjoy Double Trouble.

Double Trouble

My Rating:  

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