Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Third Time's a Charm by Marquita Valentine

Title: Third Time's a Charm
Author: Marquita Valentine
My Rating: B

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Holland Springs #2
Main Characters: Rose and Sasha
Release Date: September 2012
ISBN: ebook
Publisher: -
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Not even Holland Springs' Most Notorious Resident can stop this Love Spell.

Customers come to Rose Holland’s apothecary shop for three things: to hear her uncanny matchmaking advice, to buy the “magical” hair and skin products she sells, and to accuse her of trying to steal their men. For years Rose has been entirely innocent and almost content with that status quo. But that was before sexy, smooth-talking Sasha Romanov came to town and made her want to use her love potions on him… until he broke her heart. Now corrupt town officials want to seize her land and sell it to an industrial giant, and her only hope for help looks like the one man she can’t trust—or stop herself from falling under his spell. 

Alexander “Sasha” Romanov seems like every woman’s dream: charming, handsome and fabulously rich. But while the people of Holland Springs think he’s in town to generously invest in their economy (and possibly one of their daughters), Sasha struggles to save his sick mother from his vicious uncle’s plans by doing everything the greedy businessman wants. And Vlad Romanov wants Rose Holland’s land—at any cost. 

Despite Sasha’s vow to get the job done and keep his hands (and everything else!) off Rose, the blue-eyed witch enchants him. But his mother’s life remains in the balance. Sasha must find a way to protect his mother, sabotage his uncle’s plans, and win the woman who’s captured his heart without destroying everything she loves.

My Review:
Okay, let me just state for the record that when I read this book, I was coming down with a bad head-cold. As a result, I kept feeling like I was missing parts of the story especially at the beginning with the first few opening scenes. I don't think it was truly an issue with the book...I think my brain was just foggy. But even with that (perceived) issue, I got completely caught up in this story.

This is a book that has a little bit of everything. It takes place in a small town where Rose's family has centuries of reputation behind it...and it's not exactly a good reputation. Rose herself has a little bit of a witchy side...mysterious things happen around her. Some of them were explained and some never were. It definitely added an aura of mystique around her and her "abilities". There are family issues for both Rose and Sasha. Sasha is being blackmailed by his uncle to do some truly awful things...right now the focus of those things is Rose...since his uncle is trying to take her land away for corporate/money-making purposes. Rose has all kinds of family issues...her sisters, her missing mother, her surprise of a father who also isn't above blackmail. Overall, neither of these characters has a family that they can turn to or count on....for the most part.

Rose has an herbal shop in town where she sells herbal remedies, soaps, and oils that come from centuries of recipes from her ancestors. Despite having served almost everyone in town at one point or other, she really doesn't have many friends or much of a support system. She's raising her sister's baby and working to support her other sisters college schooling. She has a LOT of responsibility and a 10-year back-tax notice breathing down her neck. 

Sasha hasn't spent the last few years doing anything that he's proud of. His mother's in a coma and his uncle is responsible for her care. If Sasha doesn't do what he says, then his mother's care suffers. For the most part the things he's had to do have been okay with him though because he was going up against men that were just as despicable as his uncle. That's not Rose's situation and he can't feel good about what he's having to do. Sasha was an interesting character...much more in touch with his feminine side than most guys in romance novels. He's into fashion, likes decorating, adores the baby...but he also has these super-sexy nipple piercings, is really jealous, and is so into Rose. He's really a sensitive soul when it comes to her. It was an interesting dichotomy. And I absolutely loved his relationship with Blackbeard, Rose's cat...their relationship kept me giggling.

Rose is tough... she doesn't give up and just keeps giving to this town that probably doesn't deserve her loyalty after the way that a lot of them have treated her. She's always the first to forgive and offer a helping hand...to absolutely everyone...including the guy who broke her heart a few months ago, Sasha. I loved her witchy side and the way that the weather seemed coincidentally in-tune with her emotions. It added a really fun little paranormal twist to the story. The history of her family was interesting and added some other fun elements. 

This was an entertaining story. It's the second in the series, but it definitely works as a stand-alone. I haven't read the first, but I did go out and buy it after reading this book. It features Sasha's cousin, Christian. I'm hoping his other cousin and Christian's twin, Sebastion also gets a story because I LOVED his actions at the end of this book.

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