Friday, January 29, 2010

Romance Book Review: Cougar Challenge Series

In the Cougar Challenge series, Publisher Ellora's Cave brought together seven different authors to tell the story of seven women who dream of dating a younger man, but don't have the guts to go out and do it without the encouragement of their friends.

The first story, Play It Again Sam, by Samantha Kane, tells the story about how the ladies met at a erotic romance convention becoming quick friends and telling their dreams to each other. When the ladies return home one of the ladies starts a blog called Tempt the Cougar where all the ladies go on and talk about their love lives. Monica is tired of talking and ready for action, so she sets a challenge to all her fellow friends and the series begins.

Now that everything is set in motion, first Monica and then the rest of the ladies put their words into action and one by one meets the younger man of their dreams. Each of the stories are different in their own right. There are a lot of different erotic genres in each of the stories. Several of the stories have m/f/m story lines. One has a lot of BDSM and includes a f/f scene with multiple partners.

As with all series there are the really good story lines and there are others which are okay, but don't press the right buttons for me. It isn't necessary to read all of the books in the series, but it was nice to see all of the stories evolve into one another. Generally all of the stories are a fun read and those who like erotic romance will enjoy the read. I particularly enjoyed Assumed the Position by Mari Carr and learning all about Karma Sutra positions.

Play it Again, Sam
Author: Samantha Kane
ISBN: 9781419926419

Book One of the Cougar Challenge series.

Monica Allen has always been attracted to younger men. She even married one. But after the divorce, she thought she was through with them for good. Then she meets a group of ladies at RomantiCon, and they form a blog celebrating younger men, Tempt the Cougar.

After another lonely Friday night, Monica challenges her friends to each find a younger man to make their fantasies come true. She doesn’t have to marry him—been there, done that, threw away the t-shirt. But for a night of hot sex? Hell yes.

But Sam Lincoln refuses to be just a fantasy. He’s a graduate student with a yen for older women and he may have just found the one to make his own fantasies come true. With a little help from his roommate Josh, Sam fulfills Monica’s deepest desires. Can he convince this sexy cougar to give him a chance at happily ever after?

Beauty of Sunset
Author: Lynne Connolly
ISBN: 9781419925573

Book two of the Cougar Challenge series.

When Edie Howard meets cosmetic surgeon John Sung, she can’t think of anything except getting the younger man naked. Her friends on the Tempt the Cougar blog remind Edie of her promise—to seduce a younger man. It’s time for Edie to take action.

Dr. John Sung takes one look at Edie and knows he can’t operate on her. He signs off as her doctor and makes her a bet—if he can make her love her body as it is, she won’t have any surgery.

John’s bet involves close examinations—and torrid, sleepless nights. Their passion is far more than either expects, and John begins to wonder if he’ll ever get enough of this woman. Edie just counts her blessings and hopes their age difference won’t drive John away.

Winter's Thaw
Author: Dalton Diaz
ISBN: 9781419924675
Genre: Erotic Romance

Book three of the Cougar Challenge series.

OR nurse Elizabeth Winters is forty-one, divorced and determined to figure out what all the fuss is about sex. Her ex spent over twenty years crushing her sensuality and it is long past time for release. Literally, dammit! In her quest, she befriends a group of women her age who admit having a passion for younger men—and thus begins a challenge…

Thirty-year-old engineer Kevin Springer loves solving puzzles and “Elle” has him aching to fit the pieces. The more he gets to know her, the more intrigued he becomes, especially in bed. He quickly realizes he wants more than her offered no-strings-attached, wild sex, but convincing her to take a chance on a relationship isn’t going to be easy.

Hot to Trot
Author: Desiree Holt
ISBN: 9781419924279

Book four of the Cougar Challenge series.

Buying a ranch on eBay was the wildest thing Autumn Kelley had ever done. Past forty, she’d pretty much written excitement out of her life. But then she discovers the ranch comes with a foreman who makes her pulse pound and could give her an orgasm just by looking at her. As if that isn’t enough, he has a friend equally as mouthwatering—and the two of them take Autumn on an erotic trip that outdoes any fantasy she could ever have imagined.

If sex with one hot boy toy is fantastic, sex with two at the same time is a whole new level of amazing. But what happens when Autumn inevitably has to come down from the orgasmic high?

Assume the Positions
Author: Mari Carr
ISBN: 978141992531

Book five of the Cougar Challenge series.

Damn Cougar Challenge!

Rachel’s thankful for the new friends she met while attending an erotica-book convention. They instantly connected and began sharing the relationship woes unique to older single women on their Tempt the Cougar blog. Then Monica issues that challenge… How is Rachel going to convince a younger man to have sex with her? Hell, even she doesn’t want to look at herself naked. To control her growing angst, she makes a list of eligible men then… Nothing. It’s been too long and her divorce was too painful. She’ll never be able to do this.

Ethan, one of Rachel’s physical therapy patients, is pissed when he learns of the challenge. Not because he finds it silly—because he’s not on Rachel’s list! So he does what any self-assured young stud would do. The luscious police officer gives her a copy of the Kama Sutra then asks her to make a new list.

And assume the positions…

Sin On Skin
Author: Mari Freeman
ISBN: 9781419925313

Book six of the Cougar Challenge series.

Wild women do…

That’s the theme for the friends Stevie Jones found at an erotic-romance convention. But as the women share their experiences with younger guys on their Tempt the Cougar blog, Stevie discovers she’s the least wild of the bunch. Finding a younger man isn’t the problem; after a lifetime of unfulfilled desires, Stevie needs a younger alpha man. In the meantime, getting a tattoo is an easy, safe way to begin ramping up her wild side.

Tattoo artist Errol knows instantly what Stevie needs, and it’s not just a bit of ink. He’s hot, young—and he’s just invited Stevie to his private BDSM club. Before you can say “green light”, Stevie is experiencing things she’d only read in her favorite erotic novels. Sinful toys, spanking benches and voyeurism are just some of the stops on what will become the wildest ride of her life.

Reader Advisory: This hot little number contains a scorching scene in which the heroine becomes a plaything for others—three others, in fact—including one very demanding Domme.

Cam's Holiday
Author: Ciana Stone
ISBN: 9781419926549

Book seven of the Cougar Challenge series.

Fantasies about being with a younger man? Before her husband left her for a younger model, they wouldn’t have crossed Cam’s mind, but now she has plenty. After meeting a group of ladies at RomantiCon, Cam and the women form a blog celebrating younger men—Tempt the Cougar. Then they challenge each other to find a younger man to make their fantasies come true. It’s not a husband hunt. It isn’t about love. It’s about a night of hot, steamy sex.

When Lee Holiday enters Cam’s life, he seems like the right man for the job. A personal trainer, he makes it clear he’d love to ring Cam’s bell. And ring it he does. Repeatedly. Cam’s found sexual nirvana. Only Lee’s not going to be happy with a short-term, sex-only relationship. He wants the whole nine yards and is out to prove to Cam that he’s more than just a holiday from her normal life. He’s the man of her dreams.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Winners of the Favorite Books Review in 2009 from Romance Book Scene

Contemporary Main Stream Romance
1st Place — Holding Out For A Hero by HelenKay Dimon

2nd Place — Instant Attraction by Jill Shalvis

3rd Place — Reckless by Maya Banks

Short Stories (Novellas, Quickies®, Shorts)

1st Place — Red: A Seduction Tale by Maddie James

2nd Place — Hotter Than Hell by L. Shannon

3rd Place — Winning Molly by Bobbie Russell

Romance Anthologies
1st Place — Real Men Last All Night by Lora Leigh, Lori Foster, Cheyenne McCray, Heidi Betts

2nd Place — Almost Home by Debbie Macomber, Judy Duarte, Cathy Lamb, Mary Carter

3rd Place — Bad Girls Have More Fun by Arianna Hart, Jan Springer, Ann Vermont

Romantic Comedies

1st Place — What A Dragon Should Know by G.A. Aiken

2nd Place — Czech Mate by Sloane Taylor

3rd Place — Go Fetch by Shelly Laurenston

Cowboy/Western Romance
1st Place — Wyoming Bride by Debbie Macomber

2nd Place — Tame Horse Wild Heart by Alison Paige

3rd Place — His Sweet Obsession by Tess MacKall

Vampire Romance
1st Place — I Want You To Want Me by Kathy Love

2nd Place — Angel's Blood by Nailini Singh

3rd Place — Nikolai's Wolf by Zena Wynn

Fantasy Romance
1st Place — Love Never-Ending by Anny Cook

2nd Place — Jewel of Atlantis by Gena Showalter

3rd Place — Seduce Me In Black by Shayla Black

Romantic Suspense
1st Place — Dark and Deadly by Jeanne Adams

2nd Place — Hot As Sin by Bella Andre

3rd Place — Crisscross by Ericka Scott

Erotic Romance
1st Place — Giving Chase by Lauren Dane

2nd Place — Only Pleasure by Lora Leigh

3rd Place — Nauti Dreams by Lora Leigh

Paranormal Romance
1st Place — Desire Untamed by Pamela Palmer

2nd Place — The Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance Edited by Trisha Telep

3rd Place — Two Sighted by Annmarie McKenna

Historical Romance
1st Place — Wanton by Noella Mack

2nd Place — A View to a Kiss by Caroline Linden

3rd Place — The Redemption of Micah by Beth Williamson

Gay (male/male) Romance
1st Place — Eye of the Beholder by Carol Lynne

2nd Place — Without Reservation by J.L. Langley
3rd Place — Seeking Redemption: Aiden and Ethan by Cameron Dane

Werewolf/Shapeshifter Romance
1st Place — Golden Eyes by Maya Banks

2nd Place — To Tempt A Cat by J. C. Wilder
3rd Place — Check Mate by Annmarie McKenna

Love Inspired of the Months Romances of the Month
1st Place — The Cowboy Next Door by Brenda Minton

2nd Place — Hometown Courtship by Diana Hunt
3rd Place — The Hero Next Door by Irene Hannon

Best Romantic Series
1st Place — The Breeds by Lora Leigh

2nd Place —
The Pride Stories by Shelly Laurenston
3rd Place — Cattle Valley by Carol Lynne

Best Authors Reviewed for 2009

1st Place — Lora Leigh

2nd Place — Lauren Dane
3rd Place — Shelly laurenston/G.A. Aiken

Romance Byte: A Tapestry of Spells

Author: Lynn Kurland
Series Connection: Nine Kingdoms
ISBN: 9780425232132
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)

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The compelling start of a new fantasy romance trilogy set in the world of the Nine Kingdoms, from New York Times bestselling author Lynn Kurland

Return to the world of the Nine Kingdoms with New York Times bestselling author Lynn Kurland as a new evil, and a new passion, emerges.

Sarah's brother has embraced the dark arts, vowing to destroy the Nine Kingdoms, and she doesn't have the power to stop him. Now she must risk everything to thwart his plans, even though she fears the quest will reveal the secret she's kept all her life.

After seeing his entire family slain by magic, Ruithneadh swore never to use his power again. But when Sarah pleads for his help, he's thrust back into a life of enchantments and peril, and a quest capable of unraveling the entire fabric of the Nine Kingdoms.

Romance Book Review: A Cowboy's Charm

Author: Brandi Michaels
ISBN: 9781419916427
Genre: Contemporary Erotic Romance/ Western
Publisher: Ellora's Cave Publishing


Four years ago Callie left Rylan and the Masterson ranch after a misunderstand broke their love affair up. Now she's back to help to the Masterson ranch to help her family while her aunt is in the hospital ill. She had hope to come back and at least clear the air with Rylan, but he seems to want to part of that. What he does want is her body and she can't seem to say no to him.

I was looking to sink into a short cowboy book and this filled the bill. Brandi has a way with making her cowboys strong, charming and with a boat load of problems that need to be solved.

Rylan and Callie both believe the other has done them wrong. When Callie returns to the Mastersons' Wyoming ranch to help her extended family in a time of crisis, she and Rylan quickly realize that the desire they've always shared hasn't been diminished by time or distance. When the former lovers reunite after four years of separation, fireworks explode and passion ignites again, this time burning brighter than either of them could have imagined.

Publisher Note: Previously published elsewhere as Western Dreams, this book has been edited for EC publication

Monday, January 25, 2010

Currently Reading: the Cougar Challenge Series

Play it Again, Sam by Samantha Kane
Beauty of Sunset by Lynne Connolly
Winter's Thaw by Dalton Diaz
Hot to Trot by Desiree Holt
Assume the Positions by Mari Carr
Sin On Skin by Mari Freeman
Cam's Holiday by Ciana Stone
Publisher: Ellora's Cave

After reading Cam's Holiday by Ciana Stone I decided to check out the rest of the Cougar Challenge Series. I found that they have two blogs dedicated to their series:

Hopefully I'll have the whole series written up by the end of the week.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Romance Book Review: Ian’s Way

Author: Reese Gabriel
ISBN 9781419923722
Genre: Contemporary Erotic Romance
Publisher: Ellora's Cave


Nikky and Ian haven't seen each other for ten years. Back in high school they used to be close friends, but after high school Ian disappeared from Nikky's life. At their ten year class reunion, Ian shows up and he isn't anything like the geek that popular cheerleader Nikky remembers.

Ian offers Nikky a night in bed that she won't forget, but for only one night. After thinking it over she decides to take him up on his offer, but is it for one night or can it be something more.

Cute reunion story a little lighter than Reese's usual submissive tales.

Nikky can’t wait for her high school reunion to end. That is, until she’s approached by a totally gorgeous man. The revamped version of her old friend, Ian the geek. The guy who had always been there for her when she needed…anything.

After a glass of wine, Ian makes his move, proposing that they spend the night together, no strings attached. He promises to please her as no man ever has, and Ian is a sexy, convincing man. From his first touch to their inevitable shared crescendo, it’s as though their bodies were made for each other.

Ian is shocked to wake in the middle of the night and find Nikky gone. Things go from bad to worse when he calls her, hoping to pick up where they left off. Wasn’t it supposed to be “no strings attached”? Nikky is going to need some convincing.

About the Author:
Reese Gabriel is a born romantic with a taste for the edgier side of love. Having traveled the world and sampled many of the finer things, Reese now enjoys the greater simplicities—barefoot walks by the ocean, kisses under moonlight and whispers of passion in the darkness with that one special person.

Preferring to remain behind the scenes, cherished by a precious few, Reese hopes to awaken in the lives of many the possibilities of true love through stories of far off places and enchanted lives.

For the sake of love and hope and imagination, these stories are told. May they be enjoyed as much in the reading as in the writing.

Romance Book Review: Forever Jade

Author: Shara Azod
Series Connection: The Chevalier Men
ISBN: 978-0557226085
Genre: Erotic Romance/ Suspense/ inter-racial

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Rance has wanted Jade for years, but he has stayed away because he didn't want her hurt by his evil grandmother. Now he can't wait any longer to be with her. He will do whatever it takes to protect her and make her his.

Jade has watched Rance from afar. She doesn't believe she has a chance with the handsome man, but a girl can dream. When Rance starts showing her that he wants more, she can't quite believe that he has anything other than protecting her in mind, but Rance shows her that it is much more than that. He wants forever.

I have a fondness for books that take place in New Orleans, my favorite city. I enjoy books where the author offers a handsome man with a Cajun accent who uses all the romantic French slang that only a real Cajun can do well. Shana does a great job of presenting the romance of the city and the sexy men we all would love to meet there.

This story is part of a series and I wish I had read the books before this one. I enjoyed this book with out reading the others, but I can see that it really is a must to get to know all the characters. I was a little disappointed in the mystery side of the book, as I like to figure out who is the culprit in the crimes committed and I found that there weren't enough clues to figure out the surprise ending. Other than that though, Shara Azod is a wonderful writer, painting a great picture for readers to follow and with very well done bedroom scenes.

I really fell in love with Rance. He's the type of strong, tortured character that you just want to take in your arms and make feel better after the all the wrongs that have been done to him by the evil grandmother.

Rance Chevalier had a lot to hide. But not even the darkness of his past can stop him from claiming the woman who set his body and soul on fire. He would fight his own past, the unseen threat to her life and even his own flesh and blood who thinks to take her for his own to make Jade forever his.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Romance Book Review: Undercover Lover

Author: Charlene Teglia
Series Connection: Take Me, Lover, Book 2
ISBN: 978-1-60504-855-0
Genre: Contemporary Erotic Romance
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd.


Quick novella featuring a divorced mother, Anne, who finds out that a man she thought of as a good friend has just been biding his time until he makes his move on her.

Pete knows that Anne is still recovering from recently giving birth and divorcing her no good husband. He's been waiting in the wings, but now it is time to let her know how he feels.

Anne has a lot of things on her mind right now. She has her baby and an ex-husband who is suddenly hanging around and to top it all off the man she considered a good friend is suddenly showing her he wants something more than just friendship. . .and that's only the beginning.

This is one of those sexy quick romp books. A nice quick read with lots of fun loving sexy scenes.

When Anne Parker yanks open her front door, she’s armed and ready to aim cold fury at her ex. Instead, she finds herself staring up at Pete Crenshaw, a man as disarming as he is dangerous to her battered defenses. A man whose touch sends her I-remember-sex hormones soaring into the red zone.

Those hormones sure have picked a hell of a time to surge, though—with New Year’s around the corner and the ex suddenly making noises about worming his way back into her life.
Pete’s been biding his time. More accurately, lying in wait for precisely the right moment to take their relationship from friends to lovers. He’s aware of Anne’s trust issues, but it’s time to make a move before she has a chance to do what she does best—overthink it.

Her ex isn’t just back to make another play, though. He’s after secrets Pete and his partner hide under the cover of their garage business. Pete finds his heart caught between Anne’s safety and the secrets he’s sworn to keep—unless he can find a way to preserve both…

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Romance Book Review: Jillian's Job

Author: Fran Lee
ISBN: 9781419924859
Genre: Contemporary Erotic Romance

Publisher: Ellora's Cave


Standard boss and unappreciated personal assistant love story, with a lot of extra heat. Jillian has had it with her boss. She's been his personal assistant for one day too long. This weekend she is suppose to be spending with her family and celebrating her birthday, but once again her boss is ruining her plans. He needs her to hop on a plane and come bale him out of some personal trouble with a hot model. She'll help him this one last time, but then she will finally tell him what he can do with his job.

Mike knows that he would be lost without his personal assistant Jillian. When she drinks a little too much after pretending she is his finance, he decides to take advantage of the situation. Can Mike convince Jillian to keep the job as personal assistant and even more?
This is your standard girl loves boss, but boss doesn't notice girl as anything but his right-hand man.

The difference between this and many of the Harlequin type books with this subject matter is once you leave the office and head to the bedroom. Fran Lee is great at making love scenes and her characters come sizzling off the pages in Jillian's Job.


What good is a dream income, access to a private jet, all the perks that go with being Mike Furie’s überproficient personal assistant, if Jillian has no life? She wants a life with a man in it. And staying with overbearing, totally sexy, self-serving bachelor Mike will lead nowhere.

A trip to Aspen to “rescue” Mike from the clutches of the latest woman seeking to sink her claws into him, an excess of champagne to fortify her, and she tells him what she thinks of his high-handed tactics. She’s quitting. Again.
So how the hell did she end up in bed with him in a Tahoe honeymoon suite, naked?

Why can’t she recall how her signature got on that marriage license?
Mike discovers talents he never knew Jill possessed. Now he has her right where he wants her. And he wants her again…and again. In his bed and under him. But it’s not all about the lust, and if he gets his way, Jillian won’t be leaving his side or his bed—ever.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Romance Book Review: Dakota Springs

Dakota Springs
Author: Leah Brooke

Series Connection: Dakota Heat
E-book ISBN: 1-60601-731-4
Genre: Erotic Romance/ Menage a Trois/
Publisher: Siren Bookstrand


It has been a while since I have given a book such a poor rating. I usually try to find some redeem qualities as I realize how hard it is for an author to put themselves out there with their imagination and talent, but this time I just can't recommend this book. I found the characters lacking so much. Lizzy is a woman who knew what she wanted at 18—Hayden and Chandler. They shot her down in the worst way sending her away and finally into another man's arms. Now she's back home a divorced mother and Hayden and Chandler have decided she was right all along and now want her for their own.

Lizzy doesn't come home without a few problems following her and she isn't all that sure she was right when she was 18. The story line is solid and would have been good except, again for the characters. Hayden is not a likable character at all and makes Lizzy just look very weak and whinny. She needs to put her foot down harder and get Hayden to wake up. No matter how much she loves these two men in the end, I give this relationship another month before it falls apart.

Now I don't want to discourage from getting one of Leah Brooke's books. She is a good writer and I have enjoyed her other books. I picked up two earlier editions of this series in a print book—2 for 1 book set. Books one and two were included. I like book 1 but book 2 was the best in the series that I read.

Dakota Ranch Crude
ISBN: 978-1606015254


In Dakota Ranch Crude, Sam is always helping her brother get out of trouble but he has finally found trouble that she might not be able to get out of. This time the trouble has landed her right smack in the middle of brothers Shayne and Jackson. Jackson is a sweet talking romeo who all the girls in town are after, but once he sets eyes on Sam he knows that she is the perfect woman for he and his rough brother Shayne to share. Shayne falls completely for Sam, but he's worried that he can't be the man she wants. He's nothing like his good looking brother. With the brothers' help Sam gets her brother out of trouble and she just might find the men she's always dreamed of for herself. Definitely this is a book to check out. Through Amazon you can get the two book set in print.

Dakota Springs
Elizabeth Reed returns to her hometown for a fresh start, but she wants to avoid the ranchers who broke her heart. Hayden and Chandler Scott regret turning Elizabeth away so many years ago, but she was too young. Now that she's back in Dakota Springs, they want a second chance to prove how much they've always loved her.

Dakota Ranch Crude
When Samantha Cross goes to her brother's employers to ask for help, she had no idea that it would change her life forever. To repay their debt, they both have to live and work at the Dakota Ranch for one year. Samantha has no option but to accept.

Her brother's employers, Shayne and Jackson Montgomery, are not what she expected. Jackson, the younger brother is too handsome and charming to resist, especially when he sets his sights on her. He wants her to share her life with not only him, but his older brother, Shayne.

She realizes that the only way is to show Shayne he's not the crude animal he's become convinced he is.

Shayne is hard headed and won't believe it, convinced that he would only hurt her. Can Samantha convince this tender giant that he and his brother are perfect for her?

Monday, January 18, 2010

Romance Book Review: Undercover Housewife

Author: J.J. Keller
ISBN: 978-1-61650-115-0
Genre: Contemporary/Mystery
Publisher: Lyrical Press


Nikki is upset to see her friends dying because of a tainted drug that has been going around the sex club her ex-husband secretly owns. She understands all too well the reasons why some women need to take the drug to help them forget the life their husband's are making them lead. So rather than sitting around and watch more people die she has decided to do something about it.

Nikki's shy and not usually as bold as she used to be, but she wants to change all that and make a difference.

Josh can't believe it when she see the woman of his dreams on the dance floor at the sex club he's working undercover in. Before she can ruin his cover he decides to go and get reacquainted. To make matters worse, she tells him that she is working to find a drug dealer that is selling the tainted drugs. There is no way he is going to let her get hurt and be any part of finding a drug dealer. There's just one problem. His boss likes the idea and he has a new partner to work with.

Undercover Housewife adds together a story filled with mistrust and a long time unrequited love and with a mystery case. Nikki is a woman coming to terms with her new life and finding that she really didn't like the woman she became. The hero, Josh, is finally fulfilling the dream of getting the woman he's wanted for over twenty years. Add to that the supporting cast of Josh's partner Calvin and his gay antics, and this book is a fine piece of entertainment.

Detective and housewife meet undercover for passion, danger and tainted ecstasy.

Her ex-husband is opening a sex club, her friends are dying after using ecstasy, and Nikki Yadon needs to take action and rediscover her self-worth. She’s got the courage to infiltrate the tainted drug nest, but she wasn’t expecting who she found there.

Detective Josh Cerberus promised to protect and serve, so he accepts the assignment to go undercover as a member of a gay couple and investigate the drug deaths. Now he has no choice but to let his old flame help out on the case.

A new blaze of passion is kindled in their hearts, but drugs, death and danger stalk the two of them, and mistrust may lead to tainted ecstasy.

Romance Book Review: Preja Vu

Author: Alanna Coca
ISBN 978-1-59578-601-2
Genre: Contemporary Romance/ Paranormal
Publisher: Liquid Silver Books

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Interesting surprise ending twist in this story keeps readers guessing throughout the novel.

Ryann Phillips has nightly premonition dreams. Most of the time she tries to ignore them trying not to get involved in strangers lives, but something about the dream she had last night is different from the others. In her premonition she sees the murder of a stranger.

Seeing the woman in her dreams in a local coffee shop Ryann can't help but go after the woman and warn her of the coming danger.

Trevor Kearney can't bring himself to believe the beautiful woman's premonition. The attorney is a black and white thinker. If he can't see proof it didn't happen, but slowly he begins to realize that Ryann believes what she is saying so that is enough for him to keep an eye out.

Not only that, but the victim in Ryann's dream, his client, wants him to find out what he can about the premonition. So he finds Ryann and tries to stop the murder of his client. In the meantime he isn't opposed to getting to know Ryann a little better.

I just loved Ryann and Trevor's as the heroine and hero of this book. Ryann is intelligent and well spoken. She isn't some psychic or tarot card reader off the street. She has no idea where the dreams come from and she does the best she can under the circumstances. Trevor isn't presented as some shark lawyer. He isn't even really a divorce lawyer most of the time, but just doing a favor for a fellow lawyer and handling her divorce. He's completely taken with Ryann and isn't afraid to show it.

This is a good read for those who like mystery, suspense with great romance and bedroom scenes.

You know the feeling, something vaguely familiar … but what if it isn’t something you’ve experienced before, but a prelude to an upcoming event?

Ryann Phillips has it all together. She's a successful architect with her own home and true friends. What she also has, are nightly dreams that eventually come true. Little snapshots into the lives of people she doesn't know.

She's used to them.

Attorney Trevor Kearney finds it hard to believe that his current client is the subject of Ryann’s latest vision, that of a violent murder. He reluctantly agrees to help Ryann prevent this one premonition from taking place. What he doesn’t count on is this particular psychic’s ability to make some of his own dreams come true.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Romance Book Review: Belong to the Night

Author: Shelly Laurenston, Cynthia Eden, Sherill Quinn
Series Connection: Shelly Laurenston—Sun, Sand, Sex
ISBN: 978-0758238863
Genre: Paranormal/ Werewolves/ Shape-shifters/ Witches/ Vampires
Publisher: Kensington Brava

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Belong to the Night is an anthology featuring paranormal favorites. Whether it be wolf and cat shifters, witches or vampires the pages are filled with sexy heros and hard nosed tough females.

Shelly Laurenston is back in Smithville when the new witches are now settled offering protection to the towns shifter community. Cynthia Eden's in the dark brings two lovers back together where secrets are revealed and a serial murderer in the shape of a rogue shifter must be found. Sherrill Quinn tells a story of a witch looking for her brother and an amulet. All of the stories are pretty much full length novels offering a pretty good mix of interesting genres.

Shelly's featured story will keep readers interested, but it doesn't have her usual sense of humor and while Jamie is a strong but way too much was going on in her life. Even so still a great continuation to the series.

Cynthia's story is a fairly well put together offering the shifter and the vampire theme. Still I would have given the vampire a little harder time, especially since cat shifters hate vampires.

The final story offered by Sherill was just okay. I'm not much for witch stories, but this one seemed a little predictable and not up to the authors usual par.

By Shelly Laurenston
Jamie Meacham has enough trouble controlling her supernatural abilities. There's no time for lust, or for Tully Smith, even with his smoldering amber eyes. But Tully's grappling with his own animal instincts as a powerful shifter-wolf, trying to protect all his territory-including a certain sassy witch-from vicious rivals.

By Cynthia Eden
FBI agent and leopard shifter Sadie James' undead ex, Liam, still arouses her deepest desires, distracting her from tracking the brutal rogue shifter who is terrorizing Miami. By teaming up with Liam, Sadie has a better chance of solving the case, but as passion consumes them, she stands to lose more than just her heart.

By Sherrill Quinn
Dori Falcon is a witch with a plan: get to New Orleans, locate her missing brother, and recover the Eye of Bastet, a mysterious and powerful amulet. Her plan never included falling for sexy Cajun cop Jake Boudreau; but without his help, she may never find the voodoo queen who has her brother, and the key to her family's survival.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Romance Byte: How I Met My Countess

Author: Elizabeth Boyle
ISBN: 978-0061783494
Genre: Historical
Publisher: Avon

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Bachelor Chronicles Family Tree

Sterling Family Tree

The Earl of Clifton intended one day to find the perfect countess...
...until he met Lucy. The improper and impetuous daughter of an infamous spy, Lucy Ellyson saved Clifton’s life and taught him everything he needed to know about serving his country in the dangerous shoals of the war torn Continent... even how to fall in love. He vowed he would come back to her, he would make her his unconventional and unlikely countess, but the war and duty kept them apart for too long and when he finally returned, she was gone.

Lucy’s father had told her that the Earl of Clifton would never return for her, warned her that she would never find a place in a society that would scorn her birth. And he was right. For when Clifton returns, it isn’t to reconquer her heart, but merely to ask for her help in finding an elusive dowager, never realizing that the Marchioness of Standon—the woman who holds the keys to his family fortune—is none other than Lucy herself. It doesn’t take Clifton long to realize that his greatest mission yet may be to face the tragic secrets of their past and rediscover the passionate love that once ignited them both...

About the Author:
Elizabeth Boyle has always loved romance and now lives it each and every day by writing adventurous and passionate stories that readers from all around the world have described as "page-turners." Since her first book was published in 1996, she's won the RWA RITA® Award and a Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Award and saw six titles become USA Today bestsellers. His Mistress By Morning is her eighth book for Avon. She resides in Seattle with her husband and two small sons, or "heroes in training" as she likes to call them.

Romance Byte: Not My Daughter

Author: Barbara Delinsky
ISBN: 978-0385524988
Genre: Contemporary
Publisher: Doubleday

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When Susan Tate's 17-year-old daughter, Lily, announces she is pregnant, Susan is stunned. A single mother, she has struggled to do everything right. She sees the pregnancy as an unimaginable tragedy both for Lily and herself.

Then comes word of two more pregnancies among high school seniors who happen to be Lily's best friends - and the town turns to talk of a pact. But criticism of the girls quickly becomes criticism of their mothers, especially of Susan, who holds a visible position in town. As principal of the high school, she is considered a role model of hard work and core values. Now her detractors accuse her of being a lax mother, perhaps not worthy of the job of shepherding impressionable students. Susan is still struggling with the personal implications of her daughter's pregnancy, when she hears calls for her resignation.

But what of her close friendship with the two other moms? Are they any less at fault than she is? The friendships suffer - but shouldn't loyalty trump community pressure? And what of a fourth friend, who has power enough to minimize the fallout but whose own daughter has a murky tie to the pact?

Set in a small Maine town that cherishes responsibility, Not My Daughter raises many issues, not the least of which is the age-old question: What does it take to be a good mother?

Romance Book Review: Ellora's Cavemen: Flavors of Ecstasy IV

BoldAuthors: Aubrey Ross, Brigit Zahara, Isabelle Drake, L.A. Day, Madison Hayes, Regina Carlysle
Genre: Erotic Romance/ BDSM/ Sci-Fi/ Contemporary/ Historical
Publisher: Ellora's Cave


This is one of those cases where you have to take the bad with the good. Several of the stories included in Ellora's new Caveman Flavors of Ecstasy are very well written erotic stories. A couple are just okay and not really my cup of tea. Those who are interested in their theme might find them more to their liking.

The one nice thing about anthologies is that these style of books give readers a chance to get their feet wet in different writing themes and styles to see if they want to check out the genre in the future.

It also gives readers a chance to read a variety of authors for one price and a chance to see if they like the style. Ellora's carries a variety of books from these authors to choose from.

Companion Operation
L.A. Day
Jewel betrayed Reece, the only man she ever loved, when she confessed to a murder she didn’t commit. Sentenced to life on a desolate prison colony, she faces the horror of becoming some warlord’s sex slave. Miraculously, she’s offered an alternative. Sign on as sexual companion for a long-term space mission. She’ll still be a sex slave, but only until the mission ends. Jewel agrees and is introduced to the man who will use her body for the next five years—Reece.

And contempt has replaced the love in his eyes.

Gothic Master by Request
Isabelle Drake
Bound and naked in a training Master’s bed, Lorelai struggles to forget her sexually disappointing and emotionally painful past. When her alluring attempts to convince the cloaked man to untie her fail, she challenges him to teach her something new.

Will the Master and his red velvet bag of training tools help her accept her passionate appetites?

Hotter Than Hell
Regina Carlysle
Ellie Grant hasn’t had the best luck with men, unless you count her friendship with Sam Dare—a friendship on the cusp of change as the sexy fireman challenges her to a weekend of no-holds-barred, hotter-than-hell sex.

Sam had spent plenty of restless nights aching for Ellie and he’s grown tired of waiting for her to notice the attraction. As a firefighter, he knows a little something about heat and, as far as he’s concerned, Ellie is the only woman who can make him burn.

Nadia Seduced
Madison Hayes
Tall, dark, sinfully handsome Mikhail is fascinated by stories of the lovely whore who never climaxes. Unable to get her out of his mind, he vows to be the man who makes her scream with pleasure.

Eighteenth-century women belong to their husbands, but Nadia is determined to remain independent. Mikhail must convince the headstrong beauty to face her greatest fear—allowing him to possess her heart as thoroughly as he’s claimed her body.

Silent Abandon

Aubrey Ross
No past, no future, no questions. Tonight there are no words.

Devastated by betrayal, Starla is unwilling to risk heartbreak again. She hides behind a fictitious persona and arranges a purely sexual rendezvous with a coworker she’s been attracted to for years. But Cole knows her true identify and the reason for her fear. He’s determined to fulfill her every fantasy…then help her mend her broken heart.

Stick Up
Brigit Zahara
The wonky thermostat at the historic bank building where Monica works is on the fritz again. Just when she thinks things can’t get any hotter, a pistol-packing stud slides her a note. He’s demands money while his sexy smirk demands her body’s response.

Realizing that he is none other than her old boyfriend from college, there with his appearing-out-of-nowhere sidekick, the couple’s former best friend, Monica gets pretty hot under the collar. But when the daring duo take her hostage and retreat to a rustic hideout, the situation really heats up.

Reader Advisory: This book includes an attempted rape scene by a villain.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Romance Book Review: Seb's Surrender

Author: Carol Lynne
Series Connection: Bodyguards in Love Series/ Men in Love
ISBN: 978-0-85715-023-3
Genre: Contemporary Romance/ M-M
Publisher: Total-E-Bound


In book 2 of the Bodyguards in Love series Carol Lynne takes off from where she left off in the first book when Brier rescue's Jared from the man that raped both of them in the hospital. Now Jared is trying to move on with is life. He's gotten a job and is doing the best he can to get by despite threats from his former rapist and the man's accomplice brother.

Seb can't help but want to protect Jared. He's kept to himself for many years since his younger brother's death, but he can't help but have feelings for Jared. Now with the threat against the younger man getting closer, Seb will do whatever he can to keep Jared save and loved.

Over the past few years Carol Lynne's writing has continued to strive as she tackles current hard hitting issues, be it mental disabilities, abuse or men falling in love. Seb's Surrender keeps up with her theme and her talent shines through. This book is part of a series and while some of the characters are from previous books in the Men in Love and the Bodyguards in Love series it is not necessary to read all of those to enjoy this book. Since those are great series though you might not be able to resist if you like Male/Male themed stories.

After a lifetime of abuse, Jared Grant was rescued by Brier Blackstone and taken to one of the safest places he knew, the bodyguard dormitory of the Three Partners Protection Agency. For the first time, Jared is surrounded by men whose job it is to protect, not hurt him.

One of his protectors, Sebastian James, knows a little something about abuse. Once a victim of abuse before he and his brother were taken from an abusive household and put into separate foster homes, Seb learned to harden his heart as a way of survival. Now, the soft spoken and scared Jared threatens the shell Seb spent years fortifying.

When Jared’s tormentor threatens him from jail, it’s up to Seb and the rest of the bodyguards to keep Jared safe until he can testify at his abuser’s trial. However, the close contact might be more than Seb’s hard shell can withstand.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Romance Book Review: The Pearl Heartstone

Author: Leila Brown
Series Connection: Heartstone Shifters
ISBN: 978-1-60088-451-1
Genre: Shape-shifters/ Paranormal/ Sci-fi/ Erotic Romance
Publisher: Cobblestone Press


With White Tiger's success of finding a human mate, the King decides that to save his race the shifters must follow White Tiger's example and allow the Traveller to help others find a mate as well. In his efforts to get all in his kingdom to follow along he chooses the King's son is to be the first to lead by example.

Jorel knows that his race will die off if they do not find an answer to the reason why all of the new born's die, but he isn't so happy that he has to be the one to find the answer. He especially is not happy when he finds out that once the Traveller takes his Heartstone that there may be a chance that his black heart won't be able to find a mate.

Ally is a no-nonsense cop. She is making it her life's mission to find the woman who became White Tiger's mate, but has no idea that she is no longer on earth. She is looking at a local flea market when she runs into an old woman who convinces her that she will give Ally information on the missing woman if she purchases the heart necklace, which Ally does.

Once Jorel and Ally meet everything happens all at once and Ally is fighting for her life, and the cop in her will let her do no less than protect Jorel, as well.

The Heartstone continuation moves the story along well, but it is too short and there needs to be more time spent between Jorel and Ally outside the bedroom to show their compatibility, otherwise the story was well versed and had a great action scenes as Ally worked to stay alive long enough to fight those who were really trying to kill her.

Allyson Grey is a take no prisoners type of cop. After a strange encounter with a woman at a flea market, followed by an encounter with a tiger shifter, Ally will do whatever it takes to protect the innocent.

Prince and tiger shifter, Jorel isn't there for the innocents. He's there for her. Ally is the one woman that possesses his heartstone and Jorel must take her back, willingly or not, to his world. Has Jorel bitten off more than he can chew?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Romance Book Review: Coyote Gorgeous

Author: Vijaya Schartz
ISBN: 978-1-934657-34-8
Genre: Shape-shifter/ Paranormal
Publisher: Sapphire Blue Publishing


Using the Urban Legend of the Chupacabar, Vijaya Schartz brings readers an original mystery.

As described in the book: “Chupacabra?” Madison chuckled. “The legendary blood-sucking creature? Four-foot tall? Hairless? With a spiked spine and a long snout? Hops on two legs?”

In Coyote Gorgeous, Fish and Game ranger, Madison is on the trail of an animal that killed a horse and two deadly dogs on a local ranch. The foot prints aren't anything she's ever seen before and the ranch hand who saw the deadly creature that killed the animals insists that he saw an animal that she only knows as a myth--the Chupacabra.

While searching for clues, the end of the footprint trail leads to local artist Kal. Kal is intrigued by the beautiful ranger and offers his property for Madison to lie in wait for the creature, but things don't go as expected. Along they way indian lure and mythical creatures come to life.

While reading this book I became so fascinated about the subject matter and the legend of the Chupacabra that I had to stop and do some research on the net. Living in California we hear constantly about Big Foot, but I hadn't heard of the Chupacabra. I liked the fact that the author used the legend of the Chupacabra and that I could find out more information on it. Both Madison and Kal were excellent characters. Their personalities worked well together. I even thought that Madison's womanizing boss was well written. Definitely an interesting book for shape-shifter, paranormal and urban legend fans.

Arizona Game Ranger Madison Huntley discovers disturbing details while investigating a wild animal attack on a horse ranch in Cave Creek, Arizona. As a biologist and wildlife expert she believes in facts and science--not the scary legends frightening the ranch hand.

When Kaletaka, a Hopi sculptor, awakens bloody with no recollection of the night before, he remembers the legends of his tribe.

Can Madison solve the mystery killings and insure the safety of the town? Let alone her own safety? Each step closer to the truth and to Kaletaka unleashes an unspeakable evil, and no one is safe…

Monday, January 11, 2010

Romance Book Review: The Warrior

Author: Darcy Campbell
Series Connection:
Arientan Guardians
ISBN: 978-1-61650-116-7
Genre: Science-Fiction
Publisher: Lyrical Press
Release Date: January 18, 2010


As a baby Cado is moved from his home planet of Suha for his protection. He has been selected to be the aquamarine Arientan Guardian. He is sent to the planet of Mer where he is given the life as a merman. As he grows into manhood, he begins to have dreams about another world. In his dreams he is haunted by a beautiful woman who becomes the object of his desires. Going to an old mer-witch he is told that he should follow his dreams.

Sci-fi fans will enjoy getting involved in this series by Darcy Campbell. This book can be read separate from the series, but once you read this book you will want to continue on with the series.

Join the Arientan Guardians as they seek to protect and repopulate the Arienta Clan on Suha. They have to battle the Cerace clan, their sworn enemies and still be able to continue to fulfill their destiny.

Eight books are planned for the series, starting with The Beginning released in January of 2009.

How far will a lonely merman walk for true love?

Merman Cado has discovered just how much fun he can have with human women. In fact, they’re lining up to service him because this is something he’s very, very good at.

All is well until he begins dreaming of a woman he’s never met and his search for true love and his destiny as the Guardian of the Aquamarine stone send him on a quest far from familiar waters to another world.

Pursued by relentless enemies, can Cado save his lover, master his powers, and return to his home?

Warning: Explicit Sexual Content

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Romance Book Review: True Mates Series by Zena Wynn

Spent the weekend reading through, Zena Wynn's series. There are four books out with the last True Mates Tameka's Smile released this past December. Zena's website says she is working on the fifth of the series, but it won't be ready until the end of the year at the earliest.

In the meantime, the other four books of the series are available through two different publishers—Loose-id and Phaze books, and let me tell you the series is worth reading if you are into alpha males and sassy, strong female characters and shifter books.

All four books are written in sequence and the series really should be read one right after the other, although the author does repeat enough information that each book can be enjoyed alone. The books are primarily about werewolves and the search for True Mates. The first book introduces the story and it's characters, while already of giving a taste of future books in the series by offering part story lines of those books. While all the heroines characters are strong-willed individuals, the heros in the series aren't above doing anything they necessary to get their true mates. For vampire fans the third book features a vampire who goes after a werewolf as his "chosen" mate.

Check out Zena's website at for more information and excerpts.

(Information from Zena's website on the books)
High in the Smokey Mountains, near the border of North Carolina and Tennesse and edging the Great Smokey Mountain National Park, lies the small town of Refuge, NC. It's not an easy place to find and that's just how the residents like it. You see, the people of Refuge are not at all what they seem. Behind the human facades are shape-shifters, psychics, and a vampire or two. The males all have one thing in common: they're looking for that special woman, the one that completes them. So welcome, but beware. If you're single and female, don't be surprised to suddenly find yourself mated.

True Mates

Kiesha Morgan is a plus-sized, bi-racial business woman who lives life on her own terms. Her life is all about control...her control. She owns her own business, her own condo, and conducts her relationships the same way she runs her business -- by her rules. Any man that doesn't like it is welcome to leave.

Alex Wolfe is the town of Refuge's only veterinarian. He's also a shape-shifter, and the Alpha of the Raven Pack. He's been waiting for the woman who can complete him, his one True Mate. Even though the odds of finding her are slim, he refuses to settle for second best. Once he finds her, he'll never let her go.

Their worlds collide when Kiesha is snatched out of her nice, safe world and mysteriously teleported to a clearing in the woods outside of Refuge. She's out of her element and things are out of her control.

Life just got a little bit more interesting.

True Mates 2: Mary and the Bear

Mary Elizabeth’s life is spiraling out of control. Her twin sister was killed in an automobile accident. Her bereaved brother-in-law has decided now is a good time to renew their college romance, and her healthy, domineering mother is demanding that she move back home and slave, ah, make that care for her. What’s a woman to do? Get the heck out of Dodge! She jumps on the promotion offered by best friend, Kiesha Morgan, and moves to Refuge, NC. The last thing she wants or needs is a man. She’s got enough going on in her life.

Hugh Mosely, owner and operator of Refuge’s only eating establishment, as a favor to Alex Wolfe, good friend and alpha of the Raven Pack, agrees to rent the empty apartment above his diner to Mary Elizabeth and keep an eye on her. Hugh’s also a bear-shifter actively searching for a mate, a she-bear he can breed with and continue his nearly extinct species. Despite his nearly overwhelming, explosive attraction to Mary Elizabeth, he has no interest in human females.

Unfortunately (or is that fortunately?) for them, the true mate bond doesn’t care about personal agendas. Watch as they both get caught up in the Mating Fever and try to fight their way out.

True Mates 3: Nikolai’s Wolf

A blue moon's coming and for wolf-shifter Shannon McFelan, it's bringing nothing but trouble. Something she's got enough of already. Her body has mysteriously turned on her, going into Heat for the second time this year at the worst possible moment. It will take all the cunning in her possession to survive this lunar cycle without ending up mated.

Vampire Nikolai Taranosky knows exactly what's wrong with Shannon. He’s the reason she's in Heat. By the waning of the blue moon she'll definitely be mated -- to him -- despite what Shannon, her wolf, or anyone else thinks about it.

True Mates 4: Tameka’s Smile

Deputy Chadleigh Wilson, former lone wolf and new to the Raven pack, was raised among humans in foster care. He doesn’t know anything about true mates, but one smile from Tameka Jones and he knows he has to have her. He’ll do anything to claim her. Once she’s his, he’ll do whatever it takes to keep her safe.

Tameka Jones is baffled by her response to the handsome deputy. She came to Refuge to simplify her life. Instead, she finds herself surrounding by people who think they’re werewolves, of all things, and now her dead grandmother is talking to her.

But Chad’s not the only person interested in Tameka. Someone wants her land and is willing to do anything -- even kill -- to get it.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Romance Book Review: Whisper and Sigh

Author: Barbara Huffert
ISBN: 9781419925450
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Ellora's Cave


Sexy love story about a man finding the love of his life on a beach shore. Wonderfully written hot love scenes fill most of the pages of this erotic short story.

She’s had enough of her stagnant life, can’t take another day, so she walks out, destination unknown. She didn’t know what to expect…but it wasn’t the unrestrained reaction to the mysterious man who suddenly appears on the beach beside her.

He’s been waiting for his one true love all his life. When she finally arrives, he can’t resist their overwhelming chemistry. One touch leads to another and the expression on her face as she comes is more beautiful than he ever imagined.

If they can keep their hands to themselves long enough to exchange names, they can get started on the rest of their lives—together.

Romance Byte: Sleep No More

Author: Susan Crandall
ISBN: 978-0446556842

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Publisher: English

Click here to purchase this book


Danger Never Rests
The night was always Abby Whitman’s enemy. A sleepwalker as a young girl, she started a fire that scarred her sister for life and left Abby with unbearable guilt. Although she hasn’t had any sleepwalking incidents for several years, fear of her disorder’s reappearance keeps Abby living a life of near isolation. And then one night she awakens behind the wheel at a fatal accident.

And Evil Never Closes Its Eyes
Even though the evidence seems to exonerate her, Abby is plagued by doubts—and soon by mysterious threats. A young psychiatrist, Dr. Jason Coble, is intrigued by Abby and offers to help her explore the dark recesses in her mind. Through this terrifying journey, Jason’s interest turns to passion, and he yearns to help her find the love she’s denied herself. But first, Abby must trust him—and shed light on secrets that will rock this Southern town and reveal a danger that threatens them both.