Wednesday, February 29, 2012

I Only Have Eyes For You by Bella Andre

Title:  I Only Have Eyes For You
Author: Bella Andre
My Rating: B+

Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Series: The Sullivans #4
Main Characters: Sophie & Jake
Release Date: February 2012
Publisher: self-pubbed  

Links to Purchase:

Sexual Intensity: Hot

Get ready for another Sullivan to fall in love in Bella Andre's bestselling contemporary romance series!

BOOK DESCRIPTION: Sophie Sullivan, a librarian in San Francisco, was five years old when she fell head over heels in love with Jake McCann. Twenty years later, she’s convinced the notorious bad boy still sees her as the “nice” Sullivan twin. That is, when he bothers to look at her at all. But when they both get caught up in the magic of the first Sullivan wedding, she knows it’s long past time to do whatever it takes to make him see her for who she truly is...the woman who will love him forever.

Jake has always been a magnet for women, especially since his Irish pubs made him extremely wealthy. But the only woman he really wants is the one he can never have. Not only is Sophie his best friend’s off-limits younger sister...he can’t risk letting her get close enough to discover his deeply hidden secret.

Only, when Sophie appears on his doorstep as Jake’s every fantasy come to life—smart, beautiful, and shockingly sexy—he doesn’t have a prayer of taking his eyes, or his hands, off her. And he can’t stop craving more of her sweet smiles and sinful kisses. Because even though Jake knows loving Sophie isn’t the right thing to can he possibly resist?

My Review:

Another great installment to this fantastic family series!! This book is about Sophie, or as the family calls her, "Nice". She is one of the twin girls (Lori is Naughty) in this family of eight siblings. Being "Nice" means that her six older brothers and family friend Jake have always put her in a sweet little protected box. Sophie is tired of the box and the moniker and decides it's time to claim her own fate...and sets out to seduce Jake on the night of Chase and Chloe's wedding. And that's where this fabulous story begins.

I love the chemistry in this book. Sophie and Jake have been friends forever, but they are also complete opposites. He's a tattooed bad boy who has made his career from running and creating Irish pubs. She's a librarian with her nose always buried in a book. Regardless of those differences, they have both always harbored secret feelings for the other. The difference is Sophie wants the relationship while Jake doesn't think that he's good enough for her. Most of the family agrees with him. They know him and his womanizing ways. They just don't realize that most of it is a front to cover and bury his feelings for Sophie. I thought they were wonderful together!

The only reason that I marked the rating down a little on this one was because the story wasn't anything new. I knew exactly where the story was going, but that didn't keep me from enjoying the story every step of the way.

Once again, I have to say how much I am enjoying this series. There are still four stories yet to come out...Yippee!! We still have Smith (world famous actor), Lori (professional choreographer), Zach (mechanic and confirmed bachelor), and Ryan (professional baseball player). Zach's book is next. I cannot wait to read his story. He is the one in the family who has completely dogged everyone else as they have fallen in love. This confirmed bachelor is going to fall HARD when he falls. I can't wait to see who Bella chooses for his heroine!

If you like Contemporary Romance novels that follow a family, I highly recommend this series!!

The series:
1. The Look of Love: Chase (pro photographer) and Chloe - B rating
2.  From This Moment On: Marcus (vintner) and Nicola - A rating
3.  Can't Help Falling in Love: Gabe (firefighter) and Megan - A rating
4.  I Only Have Eyes for You: Sophie (librarian) and Jake - B+ rating

Can't Help Falling In Love by Bella Andre

Title:  Can't Help Falling In Love
Author: Bella Andre
My Rating: A

Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Series: The Sullivans #3
Main Characters: Gabe & Megan
Release Date: December 2011
Publisher: self-pubbed  

Links to Purchase:

Sexual Intensity: Hot

Story Overview:
Get ready for another Sullivan bad boy to fall in love in CAN'T HELP FALLING IN LOVE, the third book of Bella Andre's bestselling contemporary romance series! 

BOOK DESCRIPTION: Gabe Sullivan risks his life every day as a firefighter in San Francisco. But after learning a brutal lesson about professional boundaries, he knows better than to risk his heart to his fire victims ever again. Especially the brave mother and daughter he saved from a deadly apartment fire...and can't stop thinking about. 

Megan Harris knows she owes the heroic firefighter everything for running into a burning building to save her and her seven-year-old daughter. Everything except her heart. Because after losing her navy pilot husband five years ago, she has vowed to never suffer through loving - and losing - a man with a dangerous job again. 

Only, when Gabe and Megan meet again and uncontrollable flames of desire ignite between them, how can he possibly ignore her courage, determination, and beauty? And how can she deny not only his strong bond with her daughter…but the way his sweetly sensual kisses are challenging her to risk everything she’s been guarding for so long? 

This winter, if one - or both - of them aren’t careful, they just might end up falling in love.

My Review:
Ah, I love a good story full of lots of emotions and this one was fantastic!! 

No one has a better reason to protect her heart from someone with a dangerous job than Megan. After losing her thrill-seeking husband to a plane crash, she never plans to risk that kind of heartbreak again...for either her or her daughter. But when Gabe Sullivan rescues her and her daughter from their burning apartment and is hurt in the process, she doesn't want to feel the inexorable pull to him.  

Gabe has his own very good reasons for not wanting to get involved. He dated another woman who he met on a fire rescue and things did not end well with that. It's bad when the relationship starts out with him as the rescuer. He knows that and so he's doing his best to stay far, far away from Megan because he feels the draw between them too.

But throw in a really smart seven year old who also has a thing for fireman and these two really don't stand much of a chance. Like I said, I just really loved this book. The romance and sexual tension is through the roof. There are romantic, wonderfully gorgeous scenes like the ski lodge in Tahoe and New Year's Eve fireworks on the roof in San Francisco. I liked both of these characters and could completely understand their reluctance to become involved. The premise and story line just worked perfectly. Midway through the book, I felt like my heart was breaking for these two and the circumstances keeping them apart. They were just so perfect for one another.

Just another fabulous installment to this series, although I have to admit, I am not sure which one I love more #2 or #3. They are both so good. At this point, the only thing keeping these books from getting A+ ratings has been the fact that I haven't actually cried during them...although I came pretty close in this one. Now off to go read Sophie's book...

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Top Off Tuesday: Can't Buy Me Love by Molly O'Keefe

Last week, I was exploring B&N's coming soon section and this book caught my attention. Not only is the cover gorgeous, but the story sounds fun too. I've never read this author, but was weak that day and preordered this one. ;o)

Can't Buy Me Love by Molly O'Keefe
releasing June 26, 2012

Story Overview:
In Molly O’Keefe’s captivating new contemporary romance, a woman with a past and a man without a future struggle to find a place where they belong.
A girl from the wrong side of the tracks, Tara Jean Sweet knows that opportunity will never knock; she’ll have to seize it. Elderly Texas rancher Lyle Baker has a dying request: He will give Tara Jean a stake in his leather business in exchange for a little family subterfuge. All Tara Jean has to do is play the part of a gold-digging fiancĂ©e to lure Lyle’s estranged children home. The mission is soon accomplished.
Now Lyle’s gone—and his ridiculously handsome son, Luc, an ice hockey superstar sidelined by injuries, is the new owner of Crooked Creek ranch. He’s also Tara Jean’s boss. But being so close to sinfully sweet Tara Jean does crazy things to Luc’s priorities, like make him want to pry her deepest secrets from those irresistible lips. But when Tara Jean’s past demands a dirty showdown, will Luc stay and fight?

Join us (Felicia from The Geeky Book Blogger and Amanda from On a Book Bender and Me) as we celebrate those gorgeous hunky covers!! Thanks to Missie from The Unread Reader for creating our fabulous button.
Felicia is hosting the linky for this meme on her blog, so come play along....

*post a cover of a hot guy 
who just happens to be topless

*then go add your link to Felicia's blog!

From This Moment On by Bella Andre

Title:  From This Moment On
Author: Bella Andre
My Rating: A

Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Series: The Sullivans #2
Main Characters: Marcus & Nicola
Release Date: August 2011
Publisher: self-pubbed  

Links to Purchase:

Sexual Intensity: Hot

Story Overview:

For thirty-six years, Marcus Sullivan has been the responsible older brother, stepping in to take care of his seven siblings after their father died when they were children. But when the perfectly ordered future he's planned for himself turns out to be nothing but a lie, Marcus needs one reckless night to shake free from it all.

Nicola Harding is known throughout the world by only one name - Nico - for her catchy, sensual pop songs. Only, what no one knows about the twenty-five year old singer is that her sex-kitten image is totally false. After a terrible betrayal by a man who loved fame far more than he ever loved her, she vows not to let anyone else get close enough to find out who she really is...or hurt her again. Especially not the gorgeous stranger she meets at a nightclub, even though the hunger - and the sinful promises - in his dark eyes make her want to spill all her secrets.

One night is all Nicola and Marcus agree to share with each other. But nothing goes as they plan when instead of simply tangling limbs, they find a deeper connection than either of them could have anticipated. And even though they both try to fight it, growing emotions - and sizzling attraction - keep drawing them closer together.

Close enough for them to wonder if stealing one more secret moment together can ever be enough?

My Review:

Whoa! Who would have guessed that the eldest Sullivan sibling, Marcus, would be the one to fall in love with a pop star wild child? I loved this pairing! 

It helps that Nicola is a wild child by reputation only. Really, she is just a girl who loves to write and play music...the industry has run with the other aspects of her reputation. But when they meet, Marcus doesn't even realize who she is. He just knows that he's incredibly drawn to her and that their chemistry is through the charts, which is exactly what he's looking for after finding his fiance in bed with another man. He just wants to hook up for some random sex for a single night. Nicola is looking for the same thing. Realizing that she's never had decent sex with the two lovers in her history, she decides to go out and cash in on the wild part of her persona. A single night of hot faceless sex is all she's looking for. They are both in for a surprise when things move out of their control emotionally almost immediately.

I loved this book and I love this family. Marcus is the eldest of the eight kids. When their dad died when he was 14 yo, he took over a lot of the responsibilities for raising his seven brothers and sisters. As a result, he's the responsible one. He's the serious one. He's the one that they all look up to and turn to. He's also never really taken something for himself without thinking through the consequences of it. That's why this single night was so out of the norm for him.

All the best scenes in this book involve the family. The first comes when Nicola is having second thoughts about hooking up with a stranger. Her chat with his mother was incredible. I LOVED that scene...such a creative addition and it made my heart melt almost as much as Nicola's did. The second was the Sunday lunch scene when the whole family is at mom's and they find out about Nicola and Marcus' good and such a great view of the different personalities within this family. I love family series books and this is setting up to be one of the best. I can't wait to read the other books. So far, I have been really impressed with this contemporary series and it only promises to get better. The firefighter is next....YUM!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Intimate Exposure by Portia Da Costa

Title:  Intimate Exposure
Author: Portia Da Costa
My Rating: C

Genre: Erotic Romance
Series: -
Main Characters: Red & Vicki
Release Date: February 2012
Publisher: Carina  

Links to Purchase:

Sexual Intensity: erotic

I received a copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley in return for an honest review.

Story Overview:
From the moment Red Webster arrived at executive Vicki Renard's firm, sparks flew between them. The photographer is supposed to create a company profile for its new owner, but he spends most of his time flirting with her. His sexy teasing infuriates Vicki...and piques a desire to submit to him. His hypnotic eyes promise what she's been secretly craving: a sexually dominant master, like the ones in her favorite erotic novels.
Investigating his new business incognito, billionaire F. W. Shanley--aka Red--is turned on by Vicki's fiery personality and undeniable beauty. When he discovers her reading a BDSM novel on her eReader, he knows he's found a woman who shares his desires and promises to be a challenging submissive.
When Red arranges a weekend at a secluded hotel, Vicki agrees to indulge in no-strings-attached erotic fun. But can she commit to this kind of life with Red when he realizes they can have so much more?
40,000 words

My Review:
While I really liked the premise of the story line, something about this story fell a little short for me. There were a couple of things that seemed to be issues for me personally.

Vicki is intrigued by BDSM and it shows through her reading. She's never actually experienced the scene, but she has read lots about it. Red is a photographer who is photographing the inner workings of the company where Vicki works. They have been oil and water ever since he arrived. They do NOT get along, but when he glimpses the erotica on Vicki's e-reader, he knows that she is the submissive he needs. What Vicki doesn't realize is that Red is actually the new owner for the company and he is undercover checking out how everything actually works within it. 

Like I said, the story is good, but there were times that the chemistry between Vicki and Red just didn't seem to be there. There was also a BDSM scene that seemed just a little too close to the edge of abuse for my comfort level, especially when Vicki was still smarting from it a few days later. That just doesn't seem right to me, but that is a personal thing.

I liked how Red maneuvered Vicki into his lifestyle. The hotel was an interesting surprise...very intriguing. I liked the fact that Red came into the company undercover as a photographer.  I liked the hints about Vicki being unsatisfied at the company...and actually wished that had been pursued a bit more.

I don't feel like reading this book was a waste of my time, but it won't be going onto my re-read pile. It was entertaining enough, just not amazing.