Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Three Little Words by Susan Mallery


Title: Three Little Words
Author: Susan Mallery
My Rating: A



Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Fool's Gold #13
Main Characters: Isabel and Ford
Release Date: July 2013
Publisher: Harlequin
Links to Purchase:
Amazon  
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Can first love turn into the real deal in a sizzling new Fool's Gold story from New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery? Isabel Carlisle thinks she's cursed in the romance department. Her teenage crush, Ford Hendrix, ignored all her letters. Her husband left her for another...man. So Isabel has come home to dust off her passion for fashion and run the family bridal shop until her parents are ready to sell it. Then she'll pursue her real dreams. At least, that's the plan, until sexy, charming Ford returns and leaves her feeling fourteen all over again....

Seeing Isabel all grown up hits bodyguard trainer Ford like a sucker punch. Back when heartbreak made him join the military, her sweet letters kept him sane. Now he can't take his eyes-or his lips-off her. The man who gave up on love has a reason to stay in Fool's Gold forever-if three little words can convince Isabel to do the same...

My Review:
I'll admit, I didn't expect to enjoy Ford and Isabel's story quite as much as I did. Readers have known about Isabel's crush on Ford for a few books now. Her sister broke her heart and was the reason why Ford left Fools Gold and joined the military. Isabel was crushed and worked through her broken heart by sending him letters for the next ten years. He never responded and the correspondence became a kind of diary for her.

You would think with that kind of set-up that you could see the way their relationship happens, but I was really pleasantly surprised by the slow build-up between Isabel and Ford. They have amazing chemistry (I think this is the hottest Susan Mallery book I've read) and before anything else, they become true friends. Ford's mother is determined to see him married so he recruits Isabel to pose as his fake-girlfriend to keep his mom off his back. But the relationship does come with benefits....sexual ones which they both find VERY satisfying. It's subtle, but there is a very slow build-up between these characters and I really enjoyed that.

Neither one of them sees a future between them. Ford is sure that he no longer has the ability to love. Isabel doesn't plan on staying. She's starting a business with a friend in NYC. 

There are so many little things about this book to love. This book should be used as a guide for romantic gestures, because whether he knows it or not, Ford is a romantic. He cares so much for Isabel. He takes care of her....all of her and there are these tiny things that he does all the way through the story that just melted my heart. The dialogue between him and Isabel was awesome...so fun, playful, fun and flirty. It honestly was just fun to read.

This book also has a side romance that I just loved. Seriously, these Hendrix boys know how to throw out the romance...LOVED the parts between Kent and Consuelo....so sweet!

There was a moment at the end where I even teared up. Totally out of the blue and I was crying. I love the vulnerability that Ford has about his time in the military and when that all comes out at the end...gorgeous and heartbreaking. Really just brilliant, emotional writing from Susan Mallery. Definitely another winner. 

Flirting with Texas by Katie Lane




Title:  Flirting with Texas
Author: Katie Lane
My Rating: B


Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Deep in the Heart of Texas #5
Main Characters: Jenna Jay and Beau
Release Date: July 2013
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot


Story Overview:
YOU'RE A LONG WAY FROM HOME, COWGIRL

On her own in the Big Apple, Jenna Jay Scroggs can handle herself when trouble arises. But when she tries to rescue a horse, the passionate do-gooder ends up on a runaway Central Park carriage ride with a hunky stranger. With his sexy drawl and well-worn Levis, Beauregard Cates is doing his darnedest to make Jenna homesick for the small western town she's spent years trying to forget. And it's working: She's dangerously close to falling head over boot heels for the rugged rodeo star with hair the color of moonshine.

Beau came to the big city to escape his past and live life to the fullest. Yet the leggy blonde with eyes as blue as a western sky causes a real hitch in his giddy-up. So when the well-meaning folks of Bramble plot to bring Jenna home, Beau will need to convince her that she won't ever get Texas out of her blood - or one good-time, ever-lovin' cowboy out of her heart.


My Review:

Overall, I enjoyed this book, although there are moments in these books where the dialogue is just too southern, sickly sweet. If it weren't for those moments, honestly these books would rate right up there with my favorite contemporary romances. As it is though, they are just an enjoyable read and I love that they take place in an area of the country that I know very well because it's home...West Texas which I call home.

This book features Beau and I've been dying for his book. I love a wounded hero and he's already had one round with cancer with information that it may be back. Faced with mortality, he definitely qualifies as a wounded hero...just trying to live his life to the fullest...while avoiding his family, knowing how much his death will hurt them. My heart hurt for him because before his cancer the one thing he wanted most was to have a family. But the cancer scare took that away from him. He doesn't think he can have that anymore because he honestly is sure the cancer is back.

Jenna has been living in NYC with her rocker boyfriend. She's a do-gooder...always trying to improve everyone else's life whether they want it or not. She's been with Davy, her boyfriend, for three years, although they don't have much of a real relationship. She is at an impasse with her mother in Bramble and hasn't been home for several years. The town doesn't like that so they decide to do something about that. It's just by coincidence that Beau is with her when they kidnap her, returning another lost Bramble native back into the fold.

I liked everything about the story with Jenna and Beau. They were both such great characters. I've already talked about how much I love Beau's back-story. From the fact that he's 28 years old, but his hair turned grey from his chemo, to the fact that he owns the Henhouse, to how absolutely devoted he is to the hens. The intertwining of his and Minnie's stories...LOVE!

Then there's Jenna who's never felt like she belonged. She's a tomboy and a blonde in a family of small, petite brunettes. She's athletic and more masculine than a lot of men, but with that comes mile long, toned legs and I loved how much Beau loved those legs. They have some great scenes where he explores and even fantasizes about them.

There's a side story in this book with Marla (a woman who's trying to shore herself to be a hen because she needs the money) and the local preacher, Sean, who's a transplanted California boy. I loved the first scene with them in the library. The story delved a little too deeply into the southern whore and the preacher (stickly-sweet at moments with the southern dialogue and phrasing) in the middle of their story, but I liked it again by the end. 

Overall, this was an enjoyable book. If you can overlook moments in the dialogue where things get to be too much, I promise you a book with characters and story that definitely made for an afternoon's enjoyable escape.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Release Day Blast: OUTSIDE THE LINES by Kimberly Kinrade


Outside the Lines
By: Kimberly Kincaid
Releasing July 30th, 2013
(Release Day Tasty Book Blast)


Blurb
As an ivy-league ER doctor who eats double shifts for breakfast (and lunch…and dinner), Blake Fisher has little appetite for anything other than work. Being on the staff at Brenstville Hospital means taking care of people, a need Blake understands all too well from losing his brother to cystic fibrosis eight years ago. When he’s asked to coordinate a carnival fundraiser for the cause, he jumps at the chance to help others with the disease…until it lands him side by side with the one woman he never thought he’d see again: his ex-fiancée.
Streetwise and rough around the edges, Jules Shaw is no stranger to earning a living through hard work. But when her job as the restaurant manager of Mac’s Diner puts her shoulder to really broad shoulder with Blake Fisher, she nearly balks. She’d rather dodge and deflect than admit the real reason she broke things off, but the catering contract for the carnival means big business for Mac’s, and feeding people is Jules’s lifeblood.
As Blake and Jules join reluctant forces, they quickly rediscover the spark between them. But the possibility of a future together hinges on coming clean about the past, with potentially devastating consequences. Can Blake and Jules overcome their drastically different backgrounds and learn to love again, or will they always be outside the lines?


Buy Links:
Amazon



Author Info
Kimberly Kincaid writes contemporary romance that splits the difference between sexy and sweet. When she's not sitting cross-legged in an ancient desk chair known as "The Pleather Bomber", she can be found practicing obscene amounts of yoga, whipping up anything from enchiladas to éclairs in her kitchen, or curled up with her nose in a book. Kimberly is a 2011 RWA Golden Heart® finalist who lives (and writes!) by the mantra that food is love. She has written two digital novellas, Love On The Line and Drawing The Line, about hot cops and sexy chefs, with a third novella, Outside The Lines, due this summer. She is also thrilled to have collaborated on a Christmas anthology with Donna Kauffman and Kate Angell, titled The Sugar Cookie Sweetheart Swap, to kick off her Pine Mountain foodie series with Kensington this October. Kimberly’s first full-length novel, Turn Up the Heat, will follow in February 2014. She resides in northern Virginia with her wildly patient husband and their three daughters. 
Visit her any time at www.kimberlykincaid.com or come check her out on Facebook (www.facebook.com/kimberly.kincaid1) and Twitter (@kimberlykincaid). 

Author Links

Top Off Tuesday: Build Me Up by Lily Rede

Sorry...no man-nips on this one, but I still REALLY like it.
;)

Build Me Up by Lily Rede

Story Overview:
There's been a lot of noise in Kelly Lowell's house this week, but unfortunately none of it is coming from her bedroom! The construction work next door is driving Kelly out of her mind, and a series of potential boyfriends out of her life. All she wants is someone to have a little fun with, but when her latest suitor turns out to be a big mistake, she starts to get a little desperate. A girl's ego can only take so much! She marches over to give her new neighbor a piece of her mind, but one look at all those yummy muscles and suddenly a little noise doesn't seem like such a problem.

Workaholic Grant Black wonders what happened to his sex life. He's got a new construction company, an unfinished house, and he hasn't gotten laid in months. To make matters worse, his hot new neighbor only seems interested in yelling at him. However, when Grant catches her taking her sexual frustration into her own hands, he decides to take a chance and offer up his services. After all, he can fix anything, and he's oh so good with the right tools...

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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 Diana from Book of Secrets for creating this 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.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Waiting for Ty by Samantha Ann King



Title:  Waiting for Ty
Author: Samantha Ann King
My Rating: A

Genre: Contemporary Romance (m/m)
Series: Lovers and Friends #2
Release Date: July 2013
Main Characters: Tyler and Landon
Publisher: Carina
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Tyler Coil doesn't do men. But it’s harder to remember that each time he visits his best friend, gorgeous Landon Burke. As a political reporter, Ty is good at reading people, and he can tell the lust is mutual. But giving in to it could mean alienating his ultra-conservative family.

Landon never desired a man badly enough to explore that side of his sexuality—until he met Ty. He’s waited four long years for a sign that Ty wants him too, and he can’t deny his needs much longer. So when a career opportunity arises out-of-state, Landon wonders if maybe it’s time to move on.

Then Ty crashes at Landon’s while working on a story—and a searing kiss ignites a night of mind-blowing sex that’s better than their most erotic fantasies. Forced to face his feelings, Ty must decide if love is worth the risk after all—before he loses Landon forever.

My Review:
I liked this book. These are two men who have been friends for four years. They've both felt their mutual attraction, but have never done anything to pursue it, partly because of the stigma of m/m, but also because each of them value their friendship and truly don't know how the other will react. They've both dated women, but neither has felt the kind of deep connection there is between the two of them. 

Landon is a scientist. He's more introverted and withdrawn. He's the serious one of the two, but is the one wanting to really pursue a relationship. Ty is the extrovert. He's a political reporter out of Austin and is truly just a people person. Ty's family are good-old-boy ranchers with strong religious beliefs. Although, he doesn't believe the same things as them, he still loves his family and doesn't want to be ostracized by them. They will not understand if he confesses his bi-sexuality to them. He's really concerned about getting involved with Landon....what it will do to his relationship with his family and his job.

On pretty much every level, this book worked for me. I liked both Landon and Ty and liked that we got to see both their struggles as they grow to accept this relationship. They live in different towns, Houston and Austin, so it should be easy for them to stay apart once they decide that. I liked that honesty about where they are with their acceptance. This isn't an easy insta-love kind of fix and it takes time for each of them to work it out in their heads. The most difficult thing for both of them is that although the fantasy has been there, neither one of them has ever slept with a man before...and this hook-up wasn't planned. It just happened which is so much more stunning and difficult to accept. 

I live in Texas and loved the Texas aspect of this book. So much of it rang very true. Now I need to go back and read the story of Landon's sister. It sounds like that was a very good book too!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Wolf Bond by Mina Carter


Title:   Wolf Bond
Author: Mina Carter
My Rating:A



Genre: Paranormal Romance 
Series: Lyric Hounds #2
Main Characters: Barrett and Saxon
Release Date:  July 2013
Publisher: Decadent Publishing
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Barrett Simmons, head of security for the famous rock band, Lyric Hounds, has managed to avoid the band members’ less-than-subtle matchmaking attempts. Since the woman he loved was killed in action, his heart has been as dry and dusty as the sands she fell on. He doesn’t want to date, in fact he can’t think of anything worse. But he didn’t count on his sister, Melody, making a call to Madame Eve....

A car crash two years ago left werewolf Saxon Reeves with amnesia and nightmares—but the nightmares aren’t of the crash. Instead she dreams of a soldier. A human soldier she can’t get out of her head. When her family pushes her to mate with a wolf from a neighboring pack, she decides to take one night, just for herself, and contacts 1Night Stand.

The last thing she expects when she walks through the door is to come face to face with her soldier...

My Review:
I loved this book. It's short (it's a 1NS book and those are always easy reads) but it's certainly not short on story or emotion. In fact, this is a great angsty emotional read. It's a gorgeous story.

Barrett works security for the Lyric Hounds. He's the brother of Melody, from book #1 in this series, and was a soldier...until a mission went very wrong. A mission which killed the love of his life, Saxon. It's been two years and Barr can't seem to move on with his life so he accepts Melody's suggestion to set up a 1 Night Stand through Madame Eve. She does have a special, magical touch with her hook-ups and this book is no exception to that.

Saxon doesn't remember the last seven years of her life. She was in a car accident two years ago and lost a huge chunk of her life. She's had to rely on her family to fill in the blanks. What doesn't make sense though is that she doesn't dream of a car accident. She dreams of a military firefight and one man's face. 

To say that this is an emotional 1NS is putting it lightly. But it was so good. A lot of emotion and sexy times. I liked it...a LOT! It spoke right to my angst-loving heart, but was short enough that it didn't leave me feeling shredded like so many ansty books can. I'm ready for the next Lyric Hounds book. I knew I was going to like this series!