Review: Legal Heat by Sarah Castille

Friday, May 30, 2014
Series: Legal Heat #1
Release Date: April 23, 2013
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Reviewed by: Amber R.
Book Info
Author Info

Katy Sinclair is a divorced, single, working mom who is on the way to the top of the lawyer firm she works for. She's given a high profile case that could easily make her a partner in the firm. But this case just might be too much for Katy. Opposing council that she can't help but find herself attracted to, an exhusband who doesn't know the meaning of divorced, and a client who might not be telling the whole truth.

Mark Richards is opposing council for a large pharmaceutical company. And his client, Mr. Steele is beyond reproach. But Mark will only let him push him so far before he stands up for himself. Mark also freelance bartends for a kinky sex club downtown. Once he comes in contact with Katy he knows he wants her. He just doesn't realize how deep that goes.

When the case takes Mark and Katy trying to solve a murder case and dealing with the attraction that is constantly building between them things get dangerous.

I liked this book. I think that this books are really great for fillers when you just need something to read but you don't have anything major coming up. I don't like them enough to read them constantly but they're definitely not bad. If you have a long weekend and you can't think of anything to pick up check out one of Castille's books, you might be pleasantly surprised.

Review: How to Lose a Lord in 10 Days or Less by Elizabeth Michels

Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Series: Tricks of the Ton #4
Release Date: July 1, 2014
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Reviewed by: Amber R.
Book Info
Author Info

Lord Amberstall literally comes crashing into Katie's life one fateful afternoon. Lord Amberstall or Andy as we'll call him, has been away from London for a year after an incident that forced him to go into hiding. With urgent summons from home, Andy makes his way from Scotland back to London. On the way a couple of ruffians are following Andy and making it clear that when they catch him, nothing good is going to happen. With the summons and these men following, Andy can't help but decide things are connected. When his horse gets injured and actually plants him in Katie's lap, life is about to get even more interesting.

Katie is about unconventional as a lady during these times can be. She lives in small cottage on her fathers property, she wears "breeches", takes up with whatever random hobby popped into her head today, speaks her mind, and up until an unfortunate accident she was the main caretaker of her horses. When Andy shows up, she insists on keeping his horse and taking care of it until it's back to health. Oh and she won't give Andy another horse to leave.

I really got into this book pretty quick. I like the story and that Katie was so wonderfully weird. She wasn't even that weird but she was very outspoken and a take charge type and I always love that. There was a good back story for each character, more for Katie but again I love that too. The way the story progressed and changed was so good. There were quite a few things that happened that I never saw coming. Plus the progression in Andy and Katie's relationship was natural and awesome.

I laughed quite a few times and the story was very engrossing. I knew by the title that I would probably like this book and I'm glad to see that I wasn't wrong. I haven't read anything by Michels in the past but I will be checking her out from now on. If this book is any indication, she'll have a lot more to offer with different characters.

Review: A Sword Upon the Rose by Brenda Joyce

Monday, May 26, 2014
Series: Scottish Medieval #2
Release Date: June 24, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin HQN
Reviewed by: Amber R.

Plot: Alana is the illegitimate daughter of a high up lord. She was forgotten by him and raised by her grandmother after her mother died. War is coming to Alana's neck of the woods and the stress and anxiety is too much for everyone to handle. Alana's family are playing a major part in the war. She has a gift or a curse that is being exploited by her family. A Highlander warrior from the opposing side of the war causes Alana to question everything about her loyalties. 

What I liked: I don't know how accurate it was but reading about the different aspects of the war that Robert Bruce waged was pretty cool. It really made me wanna crack open a history book and find out what happened. I liked the fact that Alana was so head strong and even though she knew the people she loved world be upset, she really followed her own heart and her own mind. 

What I didn't like: There was a lot of whining going on. So many gasps and cries and exclamations. It was pretty excessive. Also Alana was pretty whiny the entire time, which got to be annoying. Like we get that she was in "peril" but couldn't she have been a little bit more stoic about it rather than so dramatic? We get that going against her family, that doesn't even like her by the way, is hard but she really has no reason to defend them or stay loyal to them. I also didn't like that Iain wasn't in the book as much. So even though they were "in love" you didn't really get to see their connection. Granted he was away waging war but still. 

Final Thoughts: The mash up at the end with Alana's father's wife and daughters seemed pretty rushed to me. The fact that they just all basically fell in with each other seemed pretty stretched. Iain and Alana end up together but because of him not being in the book as much it's hard to really picture them together.

Review: Taken by the Others by Jess Haines

Friday, May 23, 2014
Series: H&W Investigations #2
Release Date: January 1, 2011
Publisher: Zebra
Reviewed by: Amber R.
From Goodreads:
Once, New York P.I. Shiarra Waynest's most pressing problem was keeping her agency afloat. Now she's dealing with two dangerous, seductive vampires who have been enemies for centuries. The only thing Max Carlyle and Alec Royce agree on is that they both want Shia - for very different reasons. Max is determined to destroy Shia for killing his progeny, while Royce's interest is a lot more personal. That's not sitting well with Shia's werewolf boyfriend, Chaz. As the feud between Max and Royce gets ever more deadly, a powerful vampire-hunting faction is urging Shia to join their side. Shia has always believed vamps were the bad guys, but she's discovering unexpected shades of grey that are about to redefine her friends, her loyalties - and even her desires.

  1. They tried it. They really did. This has all the makings of a good UF series but somewhere along the way it misses that rhythm for me. For some reason it's just not clicking. 
  2. Shiarra is dating were alpha, Chaz. And their relationship is just not believable. She calls him a "furry" monster, beast etc a lot. She spends about 75% of the time saying that she's scared of him in one breath and then saying that she sees him as a regular person in the next. 
  3. It seems like Shiarra has a lot more chemistry with vamp leader Royce than Chaz. And we hardly see Royce at all. 
  4. I don't really care with the writing style. 
  5. The endearing and realistic friendship between Shiarra and Sara falls flat. It's not endearing or realistic. 

I could pick up another one of these books. If I actually have nothing else to read. But honestly I highly doubt it. This series is just not cutting it on the UF for me.

Early Review: In Your Corner by Sarah Castille

Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Series: Redemption #2
Release Date: July 1, 2014
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Reviewed by: Amber R.
Book Info
Author Info

This is the first book I've read by Sarah Castille and I can confidently say that I'll be reading more books by her asap.

Amanda is a hotshot lawyer who has one goal, to make partner in the prestigious law firm she works for. She's on the right track and working with the bigwigs to make sure that happens. That's until she gets offered to take a case for a huge potential client and when she walks into the meeting room, she comes face to face with her ex Jake. Amanda and Jake ended on bad terms after a short relationship. Things were going well but Jake wanted more from Amanda than she was able to give. Due to their past, Amanda goes to her boss and tells him that she needs off the case. Once she goes to her boss he gives her an offer to basically have sex with him or he's going to blackmail her. So Amanda does the only thing she can and she walks out of her job.

Once Jake realizes that he's kinda responsible for Amanda quitting her job he feels really bad. Amanda is depressed after making the decision to leave her job. Unexpectedly Jake is there to push her to get out of the house and start living her life again. Jake is a rookie MMA fighter and he pushes Amanda into the gym to give her something to do until she figures things out. And her life slowly starts to come back. However there's something holding her back from really taking a hold of her new life and the possibilities coming her way. Sometimes you're your own worst enemy.

I think it's pretty obvious that Jake and Amanda start their relationship back up. Well kind of. They both realize they made mistakes before. Jake is trying to take it slow so that they can get to know each other again and connect on a deeper level. Amanda is really not wanting it. She's very independent, she's not one to rely on other people or to reach out to other people. But that's what Jake wants. They do have some pretty tense moments and their playing before they actually get down to business is super hot. And when things do happen between them, it's even hotter.

All in all this was a good book. I honestly didn't really think I'd like it with the MMA aspect but it turned out for me. I liked Castille's writing style and how everything flowed. The character development was good for me too. However there was one aspect of Amanda that kinda drives me nuts but I think that's more me and my personal likes and dislikes. Sarah Castille is definitely an author I'm going to be keeping my eye on.

Review: Deep Dark Secret by Sierra Dean

Monday, May 19, 2014
Series: Secret McQueen #3
Release Date: March 6, 2012
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd
Reviewed by: Amber R.
Book Info
Author Info

You guys, I love Secret. I love her so much. She's everything I love about a lead character. How many more times can I say love?? Secret is such a great character with so much depth and so much untapped potential. She could actually take any path she wanted and cause hell the entire way. People know who she is and they don't question her abilities, too much anyhow.

This book was crazy. I'd say the f word but I really don't think I should. Secret is on the tribunal. Which we got to see some of but I really think we're missing out on this awesome story line with them. There was definitely more of a focus on the werewolves in this book. Lucas and Desmond are both vying for Secret's attentions and sharing her is a little bit more complicated than they thought it would be.

Can I just say out of the two weres, Desmond is my pick all day. Lucas is heavy handed, inconsiderate, rude, forceful, arrogant, and a million other adjectives that describe a shitty person. The fact that he is forcing all of these things on Secret is absolutely driving me stark raving mad. It's not fair and it's down right abusive. AND THEN Secret is straight up forgiving him or at least being "understanding", uh no. You punch him in the face and never see him again. His stupid pack be damned.

Now on the other side of things, we have Holden. And I'm sorry but I'm not sorry, I need them two to get it on. Secret and Holden mash-up will be the most epic time in this series, I can already tell.

Secret is facing something in this book that simply doesn't make sense at all. If it were a vampire or a werewolf, she would have it in the bag. But whatever she is up against is definitely going to push her limits, maybe too far.

I need to read the next book. And that's all I'm saying.

Early Review: Banishing the Dark by Jenn Bennett

Friday, May 16, 2014
Series: Arcadia Bell #4
Publisher: Pocket
Release Date: May 27, 2014
Reviewer: Amber R.
Author Info
Book Info

I know there are going to be all kinds of reviews coming out soon for Banishing the Dark, so I'm going to try to keep this pretty condensed. This fourth and final installment of Jenn Bennett's Arcadia Bell series was so bittersweet for me. One of my favorite UF series that have come out in the last few years, I was hoping it would never end. But like all good things, they have to end at some point.

Cady and Lon are tracking down the mystery surrounding Cady's birth. There are quite a few secondary reasons but the most pressing issue is that Cady's psychotic mother is trying to possess Cady's body and use her powers. Obviously this a no go for Cady and she needs to figure out how to stop her mother in any way possible.

We get some of Jupe's point of view, which I really loved. Jupe is awesome and being able to see how he thinks of things first hand was cool. While Cady and Lon were off doing what they needed to do to figure out what's going on, Jupe was doing some investigating of his own. He wants to help his dad and Cady in any way that he can, even if that means sneaking around to do it.

There is a lot of information about Cady and her parents revealed in this book. Something pretty spoiler-y (is that a word??) happens that I want to discuss a lot because I think it's super interesting but I won't say what it is. There are actually a few things that happen that I don't want to spoil for anyone. What I will say is that the epilogue had me in tears and the acknowledgments made it even worse. I loved this series and it will definitely be on that I come back to in the future. 

Review: Nauti Boy by Lora Leigh

Wednesday, May 14, 2014
Series: Nauti #1
Release Date: March 2007
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Reviewed by: Amber R
Book Info
Author Info

The Nauti Boys are three hard ass Marine cousins from Kentucky. They earned their reputation early in life and honestly. The three men do everything together and are closer than brothers. When I say they do everything, I do mean everything. Rowdy, Dawg and Natches are arrogant, manly men who have done numerous tours of service with the Marines. They've also shared numerous women together since they were little more than kids.

Rowdy has been in love with Kelly since before he knew what love meant. His dad married her mom when they were younger and he's been her protector since then. Once they grew up they knew that they had strong feelings for one another but since Rowdy was a little bit older than her, he knew that making any kinds of moves towards her would be wrong so he stayed away. But once Kelly was grown and he was done with the Marines he came home and for good. But things have changed, Kelly is no longer the flirty, sassy women he knew. She's more subdued, she's scared, and something has happened. Rowdy is determined to figure it out and he's determined to win her over.

There were pros and cons for me in this book. I liked the intensity between Rowdy and Kelly. The sexual tension between them was super hot and so thick you could cut it with a knife. It was hot, I'll give you that. Some of the things I didn't like was how borderline incestuous it was. Like the cousins weren't having sex with each other but they were having sex with the same women all at the same time. Plus Kelly is Rowdy's step-sister, their parents married when Kelly was only like 9. Granted they explain that Rowdy didn't start noticing Kelly or anything until she was like 16 or 17 but if I thought about it too much it was a little bit too icky for me.

So I think you'll have to make up your minds about this one. It wasn't bad enough that I couldn't read it but it was leaning that way. The story was not bad and the writing was good as a whole and for the sex scenes. It's just that cousin/stepsister aspect that threw me for a loop. 

Review: Men of the Otherworld by Kelley Armstrong

Monday, May 12, 2014
Series: Otherworld Stories #1
Publisher: Bantam
Release Date: January 27, 2009
Reviewed by: Amber R
Book Info
Author Info

For those of you who followed my journey through the last month, you know that I read through the last part of the Women of the Otherworld series in just a few short weeks. And I loved the ending. I never thought of reading or needing anything additional from the point of view of the men of this series. I was wrong.

We started out with learning about the circumstances surrounding Jeremy's birth. Malcolm's point of view is not something I ever wanted. And reading of it didn't redeem him in my eyes at all. He's a total bastard and that's all we really need to know. He's underestimated Jeremy from conception and that never changed. It was very interesting reading about Jeremy's mothers family though. We have always known Jeremy was "more", there is a definite distinction there and a vague understanding of where he comes from.

From there we move on to seeing Clay's beginning up close and personal from the start. It's hilarious. Well once Jeremy finally gets Clay to Stonehaven, it's hilarious. While still in Louisiana the true level of Jeremy's patience is highlighted. At the same time we see the true level of Clay's distrust. As we go on with the story, we get to see first hand the way that Clay's mind works and who he is at the heart of things. There were quite a few different things that happened that I laughed so hard at. And I loved seeing the progression of Jeremy and Clay's relationship.

At the end we get a glimpse into Jeremy's life with Jamie. As I was reading, I realized that while Jeremy is involved in all these books, we really don't get anything from his pov. In some of the books we get Clay here and there or Lucas but Jeremy is an enigma and so interesting and we get nothing. For me being able to read about him and see his way of thinking was really interesting.

Like I said, I didn't think I needed this book or even wanted it. But once I started reading, I couldn't put it down. I know that these characters can't go on forever but I really wish they could. Having the guy's stories is just as interesting and endearing as the women. I really need to see the process Kelley has for developing these stories and these people. I can't say characters because they really feel real to me while I'm reading. If you haven't checked out this series yet, you're really missing out. 

New Books!

Thursday, May 8, 2014
So Penguin sent me a bunch of books that I got in the mail the other day and I wanted to share them with you guys. 

What books have you gotten recently? 

Grim Shadows by Jenn Bennett
The Baron Next Door by Erin Knightley
Air Bound by Christine Feehan
The Accidental Duchess by Madeline Hunter
Fall From India Place by Samantha Young
How to School Your Scoundrel by Juliana Gray

These all are linked to Goodreads in case you want to check them out!

Quick Update!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014
Anyone else notice I've been slacking? I blame myself for going on vacation to California. Lol. I'm back and ready to get back into though. Be on the lookout for some new posts coming up within the next couple days. I've missed you guys!

Even the movie theaters in California are nice. Who knew?
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