Review: Twisted (Eternal Guardians, Book 7) by Elisabeth Naughton

Tempted.inddReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Cynna is a spectator of an interesting fight.  Nick is fighting for his survival without losing who he is.  Almost right away this author shows how ugly the beast of sexual and mental abuse is.  I found that even though this is part of a series, you could read this book by itself.  But if you want to know more about the Guardians, you’ll want to stay true to the series.

If you’re someone that likes Mythology (one of my favorites in English class) you’ll see that it’s combined with a group trying to protect us humans and half-breeds.  You might even recognize some of your favorite gods and those you loved to hate.  If you like some action in your read then this book will be perfect for you.  On top of that, Elisabeth adds a mystery into the mix that will heighten your reading experience – who doesn’t love a good mystery.

An interesting character to watch out for is Ari – you’ll understand when you meet him.  But he also makes me curious – what’s his story.  Nick gives the readers hints but I still found myself wanting to know more.  Both of the main characters are strong willed but for different reasons but that doesn’t stop them from realizing how much they need each other.  Once you get involved in the story, you will find it hard to put down – there’s just no good stopping point because something else will come up that will grab your attention.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy: TWISTED (Eternal Guardians Book 7)

Review: In Your Dreams (Blue Heron, Book 4) by Kristan Higgins

in your dreamsReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Emmaline Neal is a police officer in Manningsport New York.  She has an extracurricular activity that most women don’t do.  Jack Holland puts on a brave face but he has some personal demons he has to deal with.  Right from the start this author will have you laughing and if you’re having a bad day, or even a bad week, this is a great pick-me-up.

As the story begins there are circumstances that will have you feeling sorry for these two.  Even though Em has a job most of us wouldn’t have, this author has made her a woman that you can identify with.  There’s a couples bonding scene that had me wishing I were an actual spectator.  And then the scene ends with me laughing – sorry I just couldn’t help myself.

Our author shows her readers how some of the “beautiful” people can be so self-absorbed.  She also shows how cruel people can be toward those that are “different”.  This would be a perfect book to read while you sit by a fire – jealous – having a mulled wine or cider along with your favorite throw or animal.  One thing I loved about this story is that the author didn’t create one picture perfect character.  It made them more believable and some more relatable.  There are even some readers who may also be able to identify with a few of them.  Jack is what might be called brooding and not everyone will like his character but that just adds to his persona.

This is a series that each book could probably be read on their own but it’s my hope that you are reading them in order.  It’s a town you will fall in love with and wish you could visit while on vacation.  If you do find that place and take reading material with you, make sure to take this series along for the ride.  It will be interesting to see if we get another look into the lives of the residents of Manningsport – I certainly look forward to finding out.

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: In Your Dreams (The Blue Heron Series)

Review: Reckless Games by M.J. Lowell

reckless gamesReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

This story is told in the first person.

Lucy Flannigan is mourning the loss of someone very special to her.  And then she overhears something she shouldn’t have.  Rhys Carlyle is a man who has quite the appetite for the ladies.  These two have a very interesting first meeting.  Rhys is one cocky man who is very sure of himself.  He’s a man of mystery and is hard to figure out but he certainly knows how to take care of a woman.

The situation surrounding them is very serious but there are times that you just can’t help chuckling.  As you read the scene where they are having tea, you’ll understand how smooth and cocky Rhys can be.  He’s also a man who knows what he wants sexually so this isn’t for the shy or who like things missionary or vanilla.

Tarot cards become a part of self-discovery for Lucy.  She’s given some choices that she needs to decide if she’s going to take.  My question to you – “Would you take the chance and listen to what the cards are telling you?”  Would you even go to a fortuneteller?  Are you willing to push you comfort zone boundaries?  You may even get some pleasurable ideas.

There are scenes that are going to be graphic and push sexual boundaries, but that just expresses the need between our two main characters.  This is not just a book where two people get together and have sex.  There’s also mystery and suspense that pulls this book together and then there’s the war that goes on between the head and the heart.  Music plays a small part and an excellent way to set the mood so if you like classical get your favorites playing in the background.  I found that this is a book that you can put down but the problem was trying to find just the right place to stop.  But when you get to the end, be prepared…  I look forward to see how our author does with the sequel.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy: Reckless Games

Review: Flirting with Disaster (Camelot, Book 3) by Ruthie Knox

flirting with disasterReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Katie Clark is in the car while her brother Caleb talks to her.  Sean Owens is sitting next to her while this conversation is going on.  They work at Camelot Security.

I love how Ruthie gives her readers a hero that is not perfect – it just makes him more human.  It’s not a physical imperfection so you can still make him as cute as you want.  He also didn’t have the storybook life growing up.  Katie’s life isn’t perfect either – she seems to be a little quirky.

There’s one scene where Sean and Katie are talking about how they read a book.  Katie’s way is very interesting.  But it begs the question, “Are you the same way?”  I have to admit that in the past sometimes I wouldn’t buy a book before I did the same as Katie.

As part of their job, Katie and Sean are to protect a singer.  This is where we’re given a little mystery.  At times you may be a little confused as to what the singer is hiding but the mystery doesn’t take away from how good this story is.

Ruthie writes some really hot and sexy scenes that fit right in with the great storyline.  Sexy movies have nothing on Ruthie.  You get better dialogue, more for the imagination, and people who are more normal than those that are so fake in the adult films.  She also shows that falling in love isn’t easy especially if it’s not the second time around.  And also that a person may be less than perfect but they can fall in love just like anyone else.

This is turning out to be a great series.  It makes me want to take a trip and find Camelot.  If you go to Ruthie’s web site, http://www.ruthieknox.com/, you can get some information about the first two books, which I hope you have read, and a sneak peek into her next book titled Making It Last. 

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: Flirting with Disaster: Camelot Series

Review: Better Date Than Never by Susan Hatler

better date than neverReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Boxed Set (Books 1 – 6)

All Books are written are in the first person.

Book One:  Love at First Date

Ellen is trying to find love that will end in marriage.  In doing a favor for a friend, she has to make an emergency trip.  It’s a story where you need to be open for anything – you may just surprise yourself.  It’s a cute story where if you have a four-legged friend you might want to cuddle and it will also have you chuckling.  Susan gives you a sweet ending.  This is a great first story to start off this bundle and it’s done without any sex scenes.  It takes on the idea of online dating and shows that sometimes another option is better – so keep your mind open.

Book Two:  Truth or Date

Gina is Ellen’s friend and this is her story.  They’re getting ready for a wedding and Gina’s getting ready to move on with her life.  She’s like most of us that worry about weight and how it looks to others – even though personally I wouldn’t mind being her size.  This author has a devious mind – she puts Gina into a situation that some women wouldn’t mind having.  It may even take you back in time to what you did with your own girlfriends.

Book Three:  My Last Blind Date

This story is about Rachel, another friend of Ellen’s.  The setting for this story is Valentine’s Day.  Rachel is a woman that owns a dog that was introduced in book one.  She is a woman that’s striking out when it comes to blind dates.  This story looks at work connections – it shows that instant attraction can work.  Book three seems to be the shortest, which makes it perfect for being in the middle of the set.

Book Four:  Save the Date

Kristen is taking a vacation away from her job.  Her story seems to be about friends taking it to the next level.  She also has a hard time letting go of the past – so much so that she obsesses over it.  Book four shows that it’s not easy to turn off who you are – sometimes your job is just part of who you are and vice versa.  This author has me wondering if she actually knows women like these friends – if not she has a great imagination.

Book Five:  A Twist of Date

Mel is a woman who is full of energy.  This book is not seeing what’s right in front of you.  It shows that jumping to conclusions can hurt people.  And do you really know your friends or just what you see on the surface.  Mel’s life seems so very hectic – and I thought mine was bad.  Trying to find love under those circumstances can be very hard.  Her story seems to be the craziest out of all of them.

Book Six:  License to Date

Kaitlin is trying to start over but she can’t seem to shake her well-meaning friends.  She has an agenda but plans can change when love comes knocking.  This story teaches you that your name and your job do not define who you are.  What a great way to end this boxed set.

Each story flows seamlessly from book to book, which makes it perfect if you only have a little time and need just the right spot in which to stop.  It’s a set that can be read at any time of year and to read over and over.  Just like true friends, you’ll find that the friends don’t disappear – they continue to appear in the other books.  If you’ve enjoyed this set as much as I did, you may want to continue by reading book seven entitled Driven to Date.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy: Better Date than Never Boxed Set (Books 1-6)

Review: The Mark of the Midnight Manzanilla (Pink Carnation, Book 11) by Lauren Willig

mark of the midnight manzanillaReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Make sure to read the Prologue because it prepares the reader for the first chapter.

Sally Fitzhugh is at an evening soirée and she has an interesting discussion with friends.  Lucien, the Duke of Belliston, has a late night visitor and they have an interesting discussion – there’s no way you can stop reading now.  Believe me, if you like to read historical, paranormal, and time travel romances by the end of chapter two this author will have you hooked.

Sally has an interesting personality and she’s a woman who doesn’t mind trying to figure things out.  This author could have left that story at that and just let things unfold from there but she took it a step further- she’s added in a mystery to be solved.  And don’t worry about wondering if you’ll be lost between the past and present – the author lets you know so there’s no confusion.

This was a book that looks to be part of a great series.  My only disappointment was that I didn’t start reading this author’s work before now.  I found that this book could be read as a stand-alone so you don’t need to read any of the other books to understand what is going on here.  My only hope is that if you liked this book as much as I did, and you haven’t read this series before, you will want to go back and read more about the ladies of the Pink Carnation.  If you’re patient, book twelve is scheduled to come out next August.

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: The Mark of the Midnight Manzanilla: A Pink Carnation Novel

Review: The Promise (Thunder Point, Book 5) by Robyn Carr

the promiseReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Peyton Lacoumette stops in town not realizing that she’s looking for a job.  Dr. Scott Grant is looking for some help with his practice.  Ms. Carr has a way with words – you can feel the connection as it develops between Scott and Peyton.  She also catches the readers up on some of the characters that we met in previous books.  One thing that is constant in this series is how quaint the town is and how friendly everyone appears to be.

There’s one scene that ends with Peyton making me very jealous – she has a gallon of my favorite ice cream.  That makes it definite – I’m moving to Thunder Point.  Robyn has a way of creating a sense of community in this series it’s not all about a couple falling in love.  You come to care about the people she writes about.

Women aren’t the only ones that can find love the second time around.   This author makes Scott out to be a very romantic man who thinks about the woman he’s with.  He’s also a man who’s very understanding.  He also doesn’t try to stand in the way of Peyton doing what she wants.

This author takes great care in creating her scenes, which makes it very easy to picture what’s going on.  You can count on her to help you forget the stress that for some can almost be constant.  I’m able to just sit back, relax, and get lost in a town that you want to find and get to know the people there.

If you’re looking for a story that will make you smile – you’ve found a great choice.  There are a lot of pages, not as many as some, but you will get so lost in the story that you don’t realize how quickly they go by.  The disappointment comes when you realize that you’ve come to the end.  But then you realize that there’s another book just around the corner.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Review: Better Homes and Hauntings by Molly Harper

better homes and hauntingsReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Nina Linden is in one of the areas of the country that I love to visit – this would be a great book to take with you when you go to visit. She’s trying to come back after having someone try to discredit her. She’s just one of those characters that you want to root for and that all will be right in the world for her.

Deacon Whitney is a law unto himself and has brought some people, Nina included, to help him restore his ancestral home. The attraction between them is muted compared to the ghostly mystery that is afoot. I found that I was more interested in what is going on with the house then any type of romance.

This author introduces you to a character named Dotty. She’s a relative of Deacon’s and she appears to be the comic relief in this story. There’s one scene in this book that just solidified my awe in Dotty. You will understand when you read the scene where she talks about how she reads a book – that used to be me before I broke that bad habit.

This is one of those books that I would read more than once. The author does a great job in building the momentum that carries the reader from beginning to end and leaves you wanting more. I can picture having this around come Halloween. What a perfect time to set the mood, add the perfect music, the perfect drink and sit back and relax. And speaking of setting the mood, I had to laugh to myself when some music is referenced in the book–I just happened to be listening to that music as I was reading.

Now I’m anxious to see what Molly has in store for her readers now that this book has come out.

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: Better Homes and Hauntings

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