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review 2018-07-02 23:51
ARC review: An Affair with a Spare (The Survivors #3) by Shana Galen
An Affair with a Spare - Shana Galen

An Affair with a Spare - Shana Galen 

Release date: July 3rd, 2018

 

This third installment in the Survivors series showcases the Seducer. Rafe Beaumont’s role in Lt. Colonel Draven’s regiment in the war was nothing like the other soldiers'. Just as dangerous, but not quite as heroic, at least not in his eyes. Now that the war is over and everyone is trying to live a more or less tranquil life, Rafe feels the chance to prove himself as a true hero is still yet to come. However when Draven pretty much orders him to reprise the role of the Seducer, he assumes he’s never going to have that chance. Not quite so my dear Rafe. 

Rafe was such an endearing, amusing character. His easygoing attitude and somewhat sad past was easy to understand. It was pretty obvious why all the women wanted a piece of the beefcake that was Rafe. Collette on the other hand was not as well-defined. She was too innocent to be doing what she was set out to do and I honestly didn’t understand why anyone would consider her for that kind of work. Although when it came to Rafe she was pretty set on what she wanted from him and that sort of redeemed her in my eyes. 

The Survivors that we’ve met in past books make a reappearance here but don't play quite the important a role I would have liked. I didn’t get why Rafe didn’t enlist the help of his friends in a more proactive way in order to achieve his goals. It just seems it would have made his life much easier. Another thing I didn’t enjoy much was the fact that it felt the book was two stories in one. The way it started and the way it changed course in the middle didn’t mesh well. In the end Rafe gets to prove his worth not only to his Lieutenant but also to the woman he loved (in a most romantic way) so I was happy by the time I finished. 

Overall a good read but I think Ewan’s story (first book, Third Son’s a Charm) is still my favorite. 

**I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher**

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review 2018-06-20 15:08
The Mysterious Affair at Styles
The Mysterious Affair at Styles - Agatha Christie

After reading Murder on the Orient Express last fall I decided to start at the beginning and read the whole series. I found this story pretty scattered and frustrating at times. Hastings seems to be really dumb. His sole purpose seems to be to have someone dumb for Poirot to explain things to. He would miss a jetliner that flew right over his head. He also falls for every pretty girl he sees and wants to marry them within the first five minutes.

 

The mystery itself was interesting and I suspected who was involved but wasn't quit sure how it would work out. There are a lot of things going on. I really hope this series gets better though.

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review 2018-06-09 00:00
The Mysterious Affair at Styles
The Mysterious Affair at Styles - Agatha... The Mysterious Affair at Styles - Agatha Christie My introduction to the mystery genre came not in the form of a traditional novel, but a visual novel called Umineko. A rather large part of Umineko centers around a murder mystery sometimes involving a locked-room. I read somewhere that the said VN draws a lot of inspiration from Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None, which I am yet to read. Since I read that, I wanted to read Agatha Christie and now, I am.

The Mysterious Affair at Styles is her first book and introduces retired Belgian police officer turned detective, Hercule Poirot. I believe it also serves to introduce readers to her style and several tropes she uses in her works. These tropes include a locked room, red herrings, and the so-called "final link" which points to the murderer.

While I find a lot of classic fiction to be hard and even tedious to read, Agatha Christie's writing isn't too formal as to be a chore. She makes use of different speech patterns in dialogue which lends a lot of distinctiveness in her characters, particularly Hercule Poirot, whose personality and eccentricity I found interesting to read about.

The murderer wasn't too difficult to figure out. I thought it was pretty obvious who the murderer was. Still, the usage of red herrings and a long chain of clues made the book enjoyable and still thrilling to read.

The Mysterious Affair at Styles may be easy to figure out as a mystery, but I found Hercule Poirot's character enjoyable enough that I want to see his other adventures. Besides, this is only the first of Agatha Christie's extensive bibliography. I definitely will be reading more.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-05-24 10:32
A Seditious Affar - KJ Charles
A Seditious Affair - K.J. Charles

Yes, I am one of those readers who picks up stuff when it's on sale and then doesn't get around to reading it till later, so while I'd previously read and enjoyed other books by KJ Charles (though I see I've only reviewed one of them here, which I need to rectify), A Seditious Affair has been sitting on my ebook reader for a while before I got to it this week. Don't be put off by the fact that it's the middle book of a series because, while knowing the other character's stories would probably fill in some finer points, you don't actually need to know the other players to enjoy this story. 

 

The basic premise is that it's almost the end of the Regency period and the current government is lurching from crisis to crisis, not helped by brutally putting down any kind of opposition - this is the time of the Peterloo massacre, a time when radical thinkers of all varieties were putting out publications by the ton. You don't have to know the history of the period to enjoy A Seditious Affair but it does add a little extra to the story if you do, for example when Cato Street gets a mention, you might know its significance.

 

One of those radical thinkers, a self-avowed atheist called Silas Mason, is one of our protagonists here and a year before the book starts had let himself be talked into a regular engagement with a man looking for something in particular. Our other protagonist, Dominic Frey, is far more well-heeled than Mason and works for the Home Office - his day job is hunting down seditionists, while at night (or at least on Wednesday nights) he enjoys being verbally humiliated and then sexed up by a man whose name he doesn't know. 

 

Naturally, while they've managed to remain ignorant of each others' identities for a year, the wheels fall off that particular wagon as their worlds collide explosively. Both are subsequently left to figure out how to make sure Mason doesn't end up with a prison sentence (if he's lucky) for sedition and Frey doesn't have to sacrifice his principles, against a backdrop of growing feelings between them and the ongoing fact that they are committing illegal acts together on a weekly basis. This is definitely one of those scenarios where I was left wondering how the author was going to sort it all out!

 

Anyway, everything gets resolved (even though there's always a feeling that it might not be a permanent reprieve) and in the meantime there's a lot of hot sex. I don't think I've read anything by KJ Charles I haven't at least enjoyed and, while I'm not convinced I like any of the supporting characters in this book sufficiently to read their own exploits, I may yet be convinced to change my mind...

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review 2018-05-18 19:23
good book and characters
A Suitable Affair (The Macalisters) - Erica Taylor

Lady Susanna Mcallister had been nearly trampled to death.But her walking companions Viscount Riverton kept his wits and pushed Susanna out of the way of the riders path. Susanna caught her self against a tree. And turned to see her would be assailant and saw his gaze bore into Lord Riverton , his gaze showing something Like hatred. Then Lord Riverton told Susanna that the rider was the Earl of Wescott . Then he added Wescott had almost been his brother in law when Lord Riverton had been engaged to the Earl’s sister Elizabeth/Beth. But Elizabeth had tragically taken from him. Then Riverton said he had to go as it depressed him as he was unaware the Earl of  Wescott had returned to town. Then Riverton asked if Susanna and her sister in law Clara could make it home safely. Lord Riverton had been courting Susanna for months. Susanna had never seen Lord Riverton agitated or frightened , never anxious and certainly never hateful. He seemed to be very calm and even tempered fellow- almost boring if she were honest. Riverton had forwardly introduced himself during during a mutual friend’s house party in July. Until then Susanna had never heard of him. Susanna’s brother Andrew was the Duke of Bredstone. Susanna knew her position in society and family connections opened many doors but they closed just as many when it came to marriageable prospects. Susanna had four other brothers besides Andrew and not many suitors  were willing to take on all her brothers in order to pursue Susanna’s hand. It had been over two months since Lord Riverton had begun to court her. Susanna was expecting a declaration any day now. But there was something holding Riverton back. Then Clara said that she wanted to see Susanna happy and Lord Riverton was a bore and today ungentlemanly leaving them with no footman or anyone to escort them home safely. Susanna felt Clara was more than a friend a true sister. The Earl of Wescott was Ian Carlisle. He was at his father’s home and his first instinct had been to board up the home after his sister's death. Then his cousin- Lord Rheneas Warren - Earl of Bexley asked if there were problems. Rheneas and Ian had been boys together. Bexley said he had come over as soon as he heard Ian had returned to town as it had been three years, The men had seen each other at Easter six months ago but that had not been in town. Then Bexley said it was noticed he was back when Then Bexley said the Duke was hosting a house party and Ian had been issued an invitation by the Duchess and noone refuses the Duchess. Ian had never had a proper season. He had left the country before he was old enough to make his own bows to the King only doing so when Ian was home on a brief leave and his father forced him to. Ian had only attended a few balls, one musical, and two nights at Almack’s Assembly Room before he left again. Ian had not returned until Beth’s engagement three years ago. Since then the Home Office had allowed him time to spend in England. His appearance in London now because of a summons from his superiors. As he had bought a commission when he was younger. Ian supposed he owed Lady Susanna a sensible explanation , an apology. It wasn’t gentlemanly to nearly crash into a lady of quality with his horse. Plus Ian felt oddly obligated to warn Lady Susanna of his past with Riverton as he felt she should know the type of character Riverton was. Ian didn’t feel the viscount was fit company for any lady. Ian ran into Lady Susanna and behind her appearance as a sophisticated English lady, she possessed something Ian didn’t know existed in any lady of the ton. Lady Susanna possessed strength. Susanna and Ian agreed to make a chance to talk about Riverton then Ian would drop it and honor her decision on Riverton. Ian warned Susanna to end her relationship with Riverton. He feels Lord Riverton if she treasured her life. He felt Lord Riverton was after susanna’s dowry as he had been with Ian’s sister Beth. But beth had been kidnapped then murdered and Ian felt Riverton had something to do with it Susanna did agree to help Ian investigate Riverton. Ian brings out feelings in Susanna that she thought weren’t possible. Ian finds he wants Susanna but tries to stay away as he felt he didn’t deserve love and marriage and family as he failed to protect his sister Beth.

I enjoyed this book. I liked the plot. The suspense, adventure, and mystery in this book. I liked that the romance developing between Ian and Susanna Beth. and then to know  a very similar thing was happening to other engaged women. I really liked how close Susanna and her family and her sister in law. I did feel the ending was too rushed and would have liked the book to show Susanna and Ian get married. I do feel Ian was a little selfish how he was and acted toward Susanna especially not worrying at all about her reputation. I liked the characters and the ins and outs of this book and I recommend.

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