Review: She Likes it Rough by GVR Corcillo

she likes it roughReviewed by Sandra Scholes

Synopsis: Opposites attract, or at least that is supposed to be the theory, but how can Lisa Flyte change her lazy ways when she has lived a lifetime of sitting on the couch viewing life from through her TV set? There is only one thing that will serve to motivate her into action and that is Jack Hawkins, the hot guy from her MBA classes wants her to test out his new line of adventure gear – will she jump at the chance, or will she let her family walk all over her again?

Review: Lisa is a strange girl, she’s not used to social settings, so interaction is minimal as she has no self-confidence to speak of. This is not to say she hasn’t led an uninteresting life, according to the book at least, she has lost weight due to being in a coma from, strangely enough after a drive-thru fell on her, and has become rich from the cash she got from a settlement with the fast food company. Being shy and retiring isn’t what she wants to be and decides to enrol on a self-improvement programme she hopes will help her get out of her shell (which at the moment is wedged tight as a clam’s) She believes that extreme sports will shock her out of her reserved attitude and get her on the way to recovery – what she doesn’t expect is Jack Hawkins, owner of Into the Wild, a company that makes extreme sports gear for the novice and he wants her to be his test subject. I liked how Lisa was introduced to the readers in the novel as a person who seems to be afraid of everything, but who seems to rise from her fears and make a good go of her life. Her theatrics and the humor from them is exceptional.

Good Bits:

  • The famed dancing scene
  • How Lisa interacts with others – or doesn’t.
  • How we see the world from her perspective.

Summary: If readers have a sense of humor and like comedies they will feel they are in for a treat even when they read the blurb.

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: She Likes It Rough

Review: Kick Start (Dangerous Ground, Book 5) by Josh Lanyon

kick startReviewed by Sharon S.

Will is finally braced to bring Taylor home to meet the folks. Unfortunately, not every member of the Brandt clan loves Taylor the way Will does. Then again, not everyone loves the Brandts. In fact, someone has a score to settle — and too bad for any former DS agents who get in the way when the bullets start to fly.

Let me just say Josh Lanyon writes great thrillers that combine fast action, emotionally engaging characters and passionate romances. I adore his Adrien English mystery series, but I haven’t had the chance to read his Dangerous Ground series about two Diplomatic Security Agents who seem to find trouble where ever they go. Their friendship is strong, but one of them, Taylor McAllister, is secretly in love with the other. Unrequited love anyone? Yes, please!

Kick Start is book #5 in the series so if you like to read in order to avoid spoiling you don’t want to start here like I did. This is definitely a transition book. The first four books close out the main story arc and a new one is beginning for the two guys. And it starts with meeting the parents!

(If you don’t want relationship spoilers for the series now is the time to stop reading and pick up book #1 Dangerous Ground…shoo!)

Will and Taylor’s new business adventure isn’t going well and the guys are still adjusting to living together when Will needs to go home and see his brother. It is time for Will to come out to his family and introduce them to the man he is going to spend the rest of his life with. Who takes the news well and who doesn’t? Not going to tell, you have to read to find out. And it wouldn’t be an action story without bad guys trying to hurt the people Will and Taylor love. There are touching moments between all the characters and lots of humor with Cousin Denis.

This is a novella, but it read way too fast for me. It was over before I knew it! I did have a hard time picturing the guys and keeping their names straight at first because I wasn’t familiar with them, and it is written with the assumption you’ve read the first 4. But I soon picked it up and was able to picture them in my head. I loved the characters Will and Taylor and can’t wait to start this one at the beginning of the series.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy: Kick Start (Dangerous Ground 5)

Review: Romance Abroad by Annie Seaton

romance abroadReviewed by Lynn Reynolds

Please make sure to read the letter from the author. She reminds us that sometimes we forget that authors started out as readers just like us. She also reminds us how diverse other countries are – which is something I tend to forget. I also love to find out that I have a connection with the person writing the stories I have read. In this case, Annie loves the ocean.

Holiday Affair
ISBN: 9781622669066
Date: March 12, 2012
Pages: 133 pages

Melissa “Lissy” McIntyre is on a sailing adventure – I’d be jealous if I didn’t always get seasick. Right off the bat, Annie puts in some women’s fantasy about being hit upon by a sexy sailor – but then again it is just a fantasy. Dominic “Nick” Richards is a real ladies man. Right here is where Annie had me hooked.

Bad news is that I started to read it on my lunch hour and found I didn’t want to put it down – something I don’t think the boss would understand. Our author puts in a twist that will have you figuring out what’s going to happen to Lissy before she does. I wish I could see it in person but then that’s what’s so great about our imagination.

What a great book to start this bundle off with. The reader is kept guessing about Lissy and Nick almost to the very end. This is a great lead into the second affair. You will also find that all the Richards’ men are brothers. Got to love a series where family connects the stories.

Italian Affair
ISBN: 9781622661374
Date: June 10, 2013
Pages: 142 pages

Brianna Ballantyne has an inheritance with a strange stipulation. Tomas Richards is at the airport waiting for his flight to be called. The first impression I get about Tomas is he’s a real stuffed shirt. And Brianna seems to be a woman who’s a little flighty. And these two polar opposites are lucky enough to be sitting next to each other on a long flight.

This story shows that you don’t necessarily need to know each other a long time in order to fall in love. Sometimes you don’t realize that you’re in love until it’s too late. But our author adds in a couple of twists – you’ll just have to get the bundle, or book, in order to find out what happens when they are revealed. It’s another one that I had a hard time putting down once I got started.

Outback Affair
ISBN: 9781622663217
Date: October 14, 2013
Pages: 172 pages

Jessica Trent is looking to get a job at a magazine. And she’s not off to a good start. Alex Richards is trying to fight the rain so he can finish making his deliveries. The meeting of these two was very interesting and they both have things to hide. They also end up traveling together – I think we need a little traveling music. A movie that comes to mind while reading was “Crocodile Dundee”.

I can almost picture a younger Paul Hogan in the part of Alex – their personalities just seem so similar. Of the three books, this seems to be the funniest. So make sure to pay close attention to the car trip they take. Ending the series on a funny note is perfect. If you need something to make you smile, then make sure to read this one. A place mentioned in this story is Cockatoo Springs and Annie has me wanting to visit. This is one bundle that if I ever went to Australia, I would take this with me.

If you have never read any of Annie’s books before, why not start with this series. You can read all three of these books on the same day. Or maybe you only have a little time each day in which to read, then you could read the books one at a time. If you’ve never been to Australia, this just may give you the push you need to put a trip on your bucket list. It’s also a great series to read in the wintertime, you’ll be warm in no time.

Rating: ★★★★★

Buy: The Romance Abroad Bundle

Sushi – The Food of Love?

by Christina Courtenay, guest blogger and author of The Scarlet Kimono

Hello Keira and thank you so much for inviting me onto your lovely blog to tell you a bit about my new novel The Scarlet Kimono.

From the heading of this post and the title of the book you’ve probably already guessed that it’s set in Japan, a country I absolutely love.  I was lucky enough to live there for a while during my teens and had the best time of my life, so it seemed natural to set a novel there.  Since I also love history, I decided to combine the two.

The Scarlet Kimono is the story of Hannah, a young English girl in the 17th century who envies her brother’s adventurous life.  She decides to stow away on his merchant ship and ends up in Japan, but once there, she is abducted by a warlord, Taro, to whom she’s instantly attracted.  He, in his turn, is fascinated by her, but there’s a clash of both cultures and wills and that of course stops them from admitting the attraction.  With Hannah’s brother desperate to find her and a jealous rival equally desperate to kill her, she faces the greatest adventure of her life. And Taro has to choose between love and honour …

Like many other westerners, Hannah has a tough time getting used to Japanese food at first.  She finds raw fish slimy and, well, fishy (!) and she misses bread, butter and big roasts of meat.  Although there is meat in Japanese cuisine, it doesn’t form the main part of their diet the way it did in many parts of Europe, so poor Hannah can only dream of the dishes she’s used to.  Most of the time though, she has other things to worry about!

I have to admit that although I didn’t hate it, I wasn’t massively keen on sushi when I first tried it.  It’s definitely an acquired taste, but once you get it, there’s no going back.  During a holiday in Japan a couple of years ago, my family and I visited the famous fish market at Tsukiji in Tokyo and the sushi served in the little restaurants there was so fresh it almost melted on your tongue.  And some of the other traditional dishes, like tempura (deep fried king prawns) and yakisoba (fried noodles) are delicious as well, so I imagined that my heroine adapted quite easily to her new circumstances.  Besides, surely it’s worth giving up bread to find the love of your life?

So could sushi be the food of love?  It doesn’t sound as romantic as a box of chocolates for instance (my absolute favourite – I’m a complete chocoholic!), but just imagine feeding your man little bits of sushi with your chopsticks while gazing into his eyes …  Well, I guess it could work.  Maybe.  What do you think?

GIVEAWAY: If you’d like to win a signed copy of The Scarlet Kimono, please leave a comment below and tell me what you consider to be the food of love – I’d love to know! Last Day to Enter: February 25, 2011.

Thank you again for having me!

The Scarlet Kimono is published by Choc Lit on 1st March (ISBN 978-1-906931-29-2)

(For more details and an extract please go to www.choc-lit.co.uk and if anyone would like to know more about me, my website and blog are at www.christinacourtenay.com and I also regularly blog in the Choc Lit Authors’ Corner at www.blog.choc-lit.co.uk

About the Author

Christina Courtenay writes historical novels with a hint of the Far East and loves history and all things Oriental.  Her first novel Trade Winds was based on the Swedish East India Company’s first journey to China in 1732 and featured a Scottish hero and Swedish heroine.  This novel has just been shortlisted for the RNA’s Pure Passion Historical Novel Prize 2011.  Christina is half Swedish/half English and lives in London with her husband, two daughters and three mad (but adorable) dogs.