Review: Barefoot in the Sun by Roxanne St. Claire

barefoot in the sunReviewed by Patsy F.

This book begins in an unusual way. The “life secret” of the main character is revealed in the prologue and you get a good sense of the history of the characters. Then Chapter 1 starts with 9 years later. So immediately I was intrigued and excited to be reading a romance mystery.

The story begins when Zoe Tamarin confesses to her true love (Oliver, a hot, strong, prestigious doctor) that she had a nightmare childhood. She tells him that the woman that she calls, Aunt Pasha, is really the woman that saved her from a tragic life and abducted her. They were always on the run because Pasha was afraid they would be caught and she would be sent to prison. Little did Zoe know Aunt Pasha had another secret.

As Zoe grew into a beautiful young woman, her love for Aunt Pasha grew too. Pasha had given Zoe a wonderful loving life but a life on the run nonetheless. Zoe had developed three strong sisterhoods during the years. These friends were just as much family to Zoe as aunt Pasha and although the friends had no idea that Pasha had changed Zoe’s real name and been on the lamb, they loved her as much as Zoe did.

Though they were only together for four months, Dr. Oliver Bradbury was the only true love Zoe ever knew (her soulmate). She had left Oliver nine years ago in the beginning of the story. Oliver was about to tell a secret of his own to Zoe that his ex was pregnant with his child. He had met Zoe months after he separated from his ex. But then when she left he knew Zoe would never return, so he married his ex and raised their son just to do the right thing.

Finally now that Zoe is grown and after years of running, Zoe and Pasha decide to go to meet Zoe’s friend on an island in Florida. The friend has opened a beautiful resort and is about to give birth to her second child. When she goes into labor, there is a handsome, respected, well qualified doctor at the resort with his son.

The real mystery of the book is Pasha’s secret. The end of the story is what you would expect after a story such as this, but leaves you with a feeling of…love conquers all…no matter what.

This is a very good read, the only negative would be some of the chapters were a little too wordy in the scene description.

I would like to read more of this author’s Barefoot Bay series. I rate this book at 4 stars!

[Rating:4]

Buy: Barefoot in the Sun (Barefoot Bay)

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Audio Review: The Edge of Desire (Bastion Club, Book 7) by Stephanie Laurens

edge of desireHeroine: Lady Letitia Randall was in love once, but then the left her high and dry when she needed him most. Now to save her brother, Letitia must ask for aid from the same crusty curmudgeon. She’ll seduce him if she must in order to find her brother before the authorities do and to clear his name of her husband’s murder. This gal is determined.

Hero: Christian Allardyce, sixth Marquess of Dearne, didn’t tell Letitia he joined the ranks of Britain’s secret agents to fight Napoleon. He thought she would wait for him, but it turns out she married somebody else and that it was apparently a love match. It’s a betrayal he’ll never forgive, but when she asks for help he can’t refuse.

Review: Do you like reunion romances? Second chance love stories? A little murder mystery? You’ll like this book then! Just avoid the repeated references to Vaux temperament. The mystery is complex (drags a little at times, but interesting as it progresses) and each layer reveals something else about Letitia’s dearly eagerly departed husband. There’s also a big misunderstanding for our hero and heroine to put a nice bow on it.

Narrator: Steven Crossley has a very deep voice and a wonderful British accent. His voice sounds similar on one level to Sean Connery. He says things very precisely.

[Rating:3.5]

Buy: The Edge of Desire (Bastion Club)

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Review: Too Dangerous to Desire (Lords of Midnight, Book 3) by Cara Elliott

Too Dangerous to DesireHeroine: Sophie Lawrance knows passionate love doesn’t always conquer all. It certainly didn’t help her in the past, when she felt it her duty to refuse her heart. Instead of fighting for her, her lover ran away. And it definitely can’t help her now that she is in the middle of a blackmail scheme meant to ruin her father’s reputation and her sister’s happiness. Or can it? Can she trust the pirate with the face of her first love to help?

Hero: Cameron Daggett, the man whose hand in marriage Sophie once rejected, is good at living in the shadows. When his present unexpectedly collides with his past, he has to know what brings her back into his sphere. Her meeting with a shady bloke piques his curiosity and she his passions. His skills as a thief will finally get some good use if he can manage to steal her heart again.

Review: For the record, the nickname Sleuth Hound is not as sexy as Wolfhound. Cam might have been better named Ghost Hound, because he can slip in and out of people’s homes stealing what he most desires. Virtuous ladies’ virtue especially! There are shades of Jane Austen’s Persuasion in the setup of this third book in the Lords of Midnight trilogy. Perfect, if you are in the mood for second chance romance.

[Rating:3]

Buy: Too Dangerous to Desire (Lords of Midnight)

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GIVEAWAY + Review: Big Sky Mountain (Swoon-Worthy Cowboys, Book 2) by Linda Lael Miller

big sky mountain linda lael millerHeroine: Kendra Shepherd is divorced and caring for her young adopted daughter. Once upon a time Hutch broke her heart and she’s now afraid he’s going to do it again, but this time it’s not only her heart in jeopardy, but her daughter’s too.

Hero: Hutch Carmody is about to get married to the wrong woman. Apparently the golden boy of Parable, Montana, can actually do wrong and does when he leaves her at the altar. The female populace is furious on his jilted bride’s behalf… and Kendra thinks this is a sign he is still a playboy.

Series: Big Sky Country is the first book in the trilogy and contains background information on the Carmody brothers: Hutch and Slade. In Big Sky Country, Slade inherits half of Whisper Creek Ranch, which is unexpected because Slade is the illegitimate half-brother of Hutch.

Review: Hutch was a bad-boy and a jerk in the first book, but in his book, Hutch is a really loveable hero. His interactions with four-year-old Madison were super cute. She calls him “Cowboy-man.” Who can resist a guy who buys a little girl a pony? Madison came across smarter than a four-year-old at times, which is probably my only caveat to the story. It was good to see the relationship between Slade and Hutch mend and heal.

[Rating:4]

Buy: Big Sky Mountain, Big Sky Country

Excerpt:

Except for bankers and lawyers, few men in rural Montana wore suits on a regular basis—such get-ups were reserved for Sunday services, funerals and…weddings, ill-fated or otherwise.

Opal, for her part, kept murmuring to herself and shaking her head as she began measuring out flour and lard for a batch of her world-class biscuits. “Landsakes,” she muttered repeatedly, along with, “Well, I never, in all my live-long days—”

Joslyn laid her hands on her bulging stomach and sighed. “I swear this baby is practicing to be a rodeo star. It feels as though he’s riding a bull in there.”

Kendra laughed softly, partly at the image her friend had painted and partly as a way to relieve the dizzying tension brought on by Shea’s breathless announcement. Hutch called the whole thing off. He stopped the wedding.

“The least you could do,” she teased Joslyn, trying to get a grip on her crazy emotions, “is go into labor already and let the little guy get a start on his cowboy career.”

Buy: Big Sky Mountain

GIVEAWAY: I have one paperback copy of Big Sky Mountain up for grabs. Open to US/Canada. Enter by leaving a comment about why you love cowboys, westerns, or why you love Linda Lael Miller! Last day to enter: August 25, 2012. good luck!

Follow along on the blog tour: http://booktrib.com/booktrib-blog-tour-nyt-bestselling-author-linda-lael-millers-big-sky-mountain/.

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Review: Blazing Bedtime Stories, Volume VII

blazing bedtime storiesThe Steadfast Hot Soldier by Rhonda Nelson

Army Ranger Tucker “Bear” Midwinter is back in town to help his mother repair her ballet studio/flat so the new owner can move in as soon as possible. He thinks it might mean some long overdue bonding time, but his mother has other plans and is heading to Paris just as he arrives. Figures. It’s always been about her and how he’s ruined her life.

The new owner is Veda Hayes, an old student of his mother’s, aka Tiny Dancer. When he left for college she hadn’t been grown, but now she’s grown up in all the right places. She does things to Bear’s emotions he’s never experienced before and reminds him why petite women and dancers should be off limits.

My Take: This is one very sexy short story and adorable too at turns. My favorite scenes were when the two swam in the creek, when Bear had dinner at her parents house, and when/where he proposes. Bear is totally sexy. May I have an army ranger too? Pretty please? 🙂

Wild Thing by Tawny Weber

Percy loses his cool when the girl of his dreams walks out after an earth shattering night together. He tries to tell himself the way he remembers is better than it was, but who is he kidding? It’s better. To win her and keep her, he’s going to have to figure out what made her ran the first time.

Then the ugliest dog in the world has been kidnapped and it’s up to the dog groomer and her detective to rescue the pampered Chinese Crested. If they don’t Percy Graham will miss his payday (something he needs to get over his losing streak) and miss his flight for a well deserved vacation; Andrea Tanner will lose Fur’sace to a rival business owner.

If they figure out who is behind the dognapping they will be able to prevent any future attempts on the canine. Is it Gregory Day, the man who hired Percy to pick the dog up from the groomer’s, Gregory’s ex-wife, or Andrea’s business rival?

My Take: Totally yummy! Andrea is a kicking heroine who is smart enough to watch her back and take precautions, but has a tender streak and a tender heart. Percy is the typical playboy who doesn’t know what to do with himself when the girl doesn’t return his interest. So he proposes a way back into her bed while getting the little dog too. Percy is a very enjoyable hero. I like his inner monologue a lot.

Overall [Rating:4.5]

Buy: Blazing Bedtime Stories, Volume VII: The Steadfast Hot Soldier\Wild Thing: 7 (Harlequin Blaze)

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