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Search tags: Contemporary-Romance
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review 2017-06-26 15:26
Angels Fall by Nora Roberts
Angels Fall - Nora Roberts

The only survivor of a brutal crime, Reece Gilmore has been on the road for a long time now. Plagued by phobias, obsessive compulsive disorder, and her many mental issues, she hasn’t stopped anywhere for long. But her car has decided to break down in the little Wyoming town, Angel Fist, and almost broke, Reece has no other option than to stop, and seek employment.
Soon, the little town starts feeling like home, she likes her job as cook in the local diner, and although she’s the stranger in town, hence object of curiosity, the jitters about hitting the road again haven’t hit.

Until she witnesses a murder during a hike one day, but no one believes her since there’s no proof, no other witnesses, and absolutely no sign of struggle. And it seems the violence of what she’s witnessed has put her recovery into regression, and she starts experiencing lost time again, moving things, doing things she cannot remember doing. She would probably skip town again if it wasn’t for another outsider, the man who held her together the day she witnessed the murder, the only man who believes her she did see what she claims she saw, Brody. And it’s also Brody the one who suspects there might be another explanation to her supposed lost-time episodes to the one of her going slowly crazy.

Someone is obviously trying to discredit her testimony, and drive her out of town...But what measures might they take if she doesn’t run?



Nice. Very nice. Intense, gripping, suspenseful, and skirting the edges of thriller with all the psychological warfare deployed by the villain toward the heroine. Very nice, indeed.

I loved Reece, not just liked, loved her. She was a mess with all her issues, her insecurities, her obsessive compulsive disorder, her phobias, but I didn’t find her annoying. I sympathized and empathized, but I didn’t pity her. As Brody said, she might’ve been a victim once, but she was a survivor all the way. She’d self-admitted herself into a mental institution, for crying out loud. She’d known she needed help, and she sought it. If that isn’t admirable, I don’t know what is. She also knew she had many screws loose, yet she coped, she tried to move on, she tried to live. And thanks to Brody (yes, unfortunately, the guy had to help somewhat) when push came to shove, she didn’t go down without a fight.

Now, as for Brody, I somehow didn’t get a really clear picture about him. The image, even the character of him still eludes me. He was there, I guess, a supportive entity, one of the few in town who truly believed Reese, a guardian angel of some sort, a brusque jackass which was just what she needed to get out of her funk, yet he remains obscure. A tall, dark, and handsome generic hero, who happened to get involved with Reece.

It’s weird, because it’s usually the other way around. It’s NR heroes I can clearly picture, while the heroines remain rather generic (and somewhat annoying).
I guess this is a “special” book, since the abovementioned fact isn’t the only thing that’s inverted. In this book it’s the heroine who embraces her feelings more easily, it’s Reece who expresses them first, and it’s the hero who’s scared, annoyed, and reluctant to move forward, to change the way things are, while it’s usually the other way around, with the heroines playing the “male part”.

The jewel of this story is the suspense, which is also a slight deviation from norm. Usually I enjoy the perfect combination of both, the romance and the suspense, but in this case, the romance (or whatever that was) took the backseat to the suspense. And yes, it was suspense. Not much action, not much danger, gripping nevertheless.
It was suspenseful, lurking, creeping slowly forward, keeping the reader at the edge of the seat, wondering whether it was truly all in Reece’s head or if there was something more sinister afoot. Very, very well done.
In the end, when Reece and Brody went out on their own, and the knots started unraveling, and the plot started thickening, I had two possible suspects—I had no idea about the villain’s identity until the end, so the big reveal came off as a surprise and not so much a surprise in the end.
I also felt the ending a tad too easy for the town-folk, with no vindication for Reece. I wouldn’t have minded a little groveling, but then, those that counted, believed her no matter what.

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review 2017-06-25 22:07
Book Review of Throb by Vi Keeland
Throb - Vi Keeland

The rules:

 

No dating.

No sex outside of the game.

No disclosing the terms of the contract.

 

Rules were made to be broken, right?

 

Eight weeks ago I signed a contract. One that seemed like a good idea at the time. A handsome bachelor, luxury accommodations, and a chance to win a prize my family desperately needed. There were some rules though. Lots of them actually. Follow the script, no dating, sex, or disclosing the terms of the deal. After my self-imposed moratorium on men the last year, it wouldn’t be hard to live up to my end of the bargain…so I thought. Until I realized the deal I’d made was with the devil…and I was in love with his dirty-talking brother.

 

Author's note – Throb is a full-length standalone novel. Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.

 

Review 4.5 rounded up to 5*

 

This is a stand-alone contemporary romance. I really enjoyed it.

 

Cooper Montgomery is a wonderful character and I liked him a lot. He is the CEO of a film production company that his father had started. His brother, Miles, has his own company that produces reality TV programmes. When Cooper meets Kate at a poker game, he's immediately attracted to her.

 

Kate Monroe is also a wonderful character and I liked her too. Her father was a well known poker player. However, due to her father's debts, she signs up for a reality TV show called Throb. When she meets Cooper she is attracted to him, but because of the rules of the show and the contract she signed, she finds herself torn between following the rules or breaking them.

 

I love reading Vi Keeland's books. I have been a huge fan of this author's ever since I was first introduced to her books in 2013 and I read Belong To You. I downloaded a copy of this book in 2015. Unfortunately, due to my large reading list, I was unable to read it until recently.

 

I started to read and was quickly hooked. I didn't put this book down until I had finished it.

 

This book is told through the eyes of both Cooper and Kate, which gives the reader the opportunity to see their thoughts and feelings. The chemistry between Cooper and Kate is extremely explosive from the start and hot enough to scorch the pages. I also loved meeting a few of the other characters who were likeable and lifelike. In fact all the characters were lifelike, with flaws and insecurities which made them more real. Miles came across as a spoilt brat, though he didn't have a lot of page time. I must admit that I liked Flynn Beckham, the bachelor from the TV show. He seemed a really nice guy and I could fall for him myself.

 

I am not a huge fan of reality TV and I cannot see the appeal of putting on a fake show and calling it "reality". It is not natural or real. Real life is doing household chores, working, raising a family and earning a living the hard way. Not parading around a jungle doing tasks to earn food or sitting in a house full of strangers and again doing tasks to earn specified outcomes, just to earn lots of money and fifteen minutes of fame. Luckily, this book doesn't focus on this aspect, but the relationship between characters who live their lives off camera. The story took me on an emotional rollercoaster ride from beginning to end. I loved the dialogue and the way the characters all interacted; I could picture everything in my mind's eye with ease. As this book is a stand-alone, this book doesn't end in a cliffhanger. Having said that, I am now looking forward to reading Beat when I get the chance.

 

Vi Keeland has written another exciting erotic romance. I love her writing style, which is fast paced and exciting. The story flowed wonderfully too. I love reading this author's work. She is one of my favourite contemporary romance writers, and I will continue to follow her career with interest.

 

As this is an erotic romance, there are several scenes of a sexual nature that are rather hot and explicit, as well as some strong language. Therefore, I do not recommend this book for readers younger than 18. However, if you love hot, steamy erotic romances, this book is for you! - Lynn Worton

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review 2017-06-24 16:44
Carolina Moon by Nora Roberts
Carolina Moon - Nora Roberts

On that fateful night so long ago, when eight-year-old Hope Lavelle died, Victoria "Tory" Bodeen should've been with her. But her father had beaten her because of her particular gift, Tory stayed at home, and someone raped and killed her best friend.
No one knew who did it, the town suspected a drifter, and the killer remained unpunished, as life went on...

Yet Tory hasn't been able to forget her friend or what's been done to her. They were blood sisters, connected by an unbreakable bond, and she feels it's time to finally put the past, and Hope to rest, by finding her killer. And the best place to start is back in her home town...


I watched the movie based on this book, and I must say it didn't to it justice. At all. Not in story, not in characterization, not in suspense.

This book is proof of what Nora Roberts does best. Expertly crafted story with wonderful characters. You have your prickly heroine, a deceptively laid-back hero, and a great supporting cast with the, as far as NR stories set in the South, requisite bitchy matriarch, and the "crazy" relative, usually and aunt.
But the cast itself isn't enough, one has to connect them all together, some in friendship, some in blood, some in reluctant alliances, passing acquaintances, and of course, romance.

This book has two of those, the main one between the prickly heroine and the deceptively laid-back hero, and the second between the hero's seemingly flighty sister, determined to defy mama at all cost, and the hero's best friend and the heroine's cousin, the town veterinarian who's been pining after his love-interest for years before she finally saw reason.
Strangely, I must confess I was more invested in the secondary romance than the main one, mostly because of the heroine's issues and prickliness (justified, I might add) not really doing the main romance any favors. I liked the hero well enough, and the heroine as well, I just didn't like them that much together. It felt a little forced, fatalistic, even.

There was one relationship Tory was in that I liked. And that was the slow-building friendship between her and her childhood best friend's twin sister, Faith. It was lovely seeing these two independent, closed-off women, both with their own inner scars and issues, circling each other, slowly forming the strong bonds of friendship, until becoming a unit toward the end.
The story came full circle in that particular moment.

Speaking of full-circle, I'm glad the villain got what they deserved in the one spot where it all became, but the finale felt a bit rushed. It felt rather anticlimactic compared to the buildup with its suspense and lurking danger.

Still, a very solid story, with a nice plot, good characters, a smidgen of "paranormal", and some wonderfully suspenseful moments.

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review 2017-06-22 16:15
Dangerous Waters & Dark Waters by Toni Anderson
Dangerous Waters - Toni Anderson
Dark Waters - Toni Anderson

DANGEROUS WATERS

Two divers find a shipwreck off the coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia. A wreck containing a dead diver with a knife buried into his chest. Enter Sergeant Holly Rudd who has lots to prove; that she didn’t get the job because of her daddy, but because of her merits, that she’s put her affair with her married (although she didn’t know it at the time) superior behind her, that she can close her first murder case, and that she can keep it professional when it comes to her attraction to one of the divers who found the body…


Let me tell you, she proved none of it. For a supposed “professional” she was rather incompetent when it came to everything from investigating, to interrogating, to listening to her guts, and to keeping her hands off the supposed suspect. And for someone who claimed to have gotten the job through merit, she was rather quick to doubt herself.

So, this was supposed to be a romantic suspense novel. So let’s start with the romance. It wasn’t there. One snap of the fingers and the two of them were immediately attracted to each other, another snap of the fingers and they were bumping uglies (no emotion behind it, mind you), and yet another snap of the fingers and they were in love.
Why? How? Why?
There was all tell and absolutely no show.
I didn’t understand what they saw in each other—she was an incompetent idiot with a teenage crush, he was an off-putting asshole with a chip on his shoulder and no compunction about lying to the woman he supposedly loved.

As for the suspense. There was none. Or if there was, it was buried so deep, I couldn’t find it. No chills, no intensity. Nothing.
There were two “mystery” sub-plots, really, but both connected by the same villain. The first, about the murder in 1982 and the fact the heroine bore an uncanny resemblance to the murder victim was so predictable it was transparent. I was just waiting for everybody to finally get their heads out of their asses and see the truth.
So the only “surprise” was the reveal of the villain and the motive. The latter was rather far-fetched, or I simply didn’t care by that point, and the villain...Yeah, I didn’t care by that point.

It started off great with the chill-filled prologue, but after a few chapters, the whole thing slowed down. The plot was vapid, the writing amateurish, the romance and suspense non-existent. In the second half of it, I skimmed scenes, hoping for a glimmer of something to keep it interesting, to kick the pace into a higher gear, and by the end of it, I was ecstatic it was finally over.

 

 

DARK WATERS

DNF @ 13%

A nicely intense prologue once more followed by plodding, slow, and boring "story".

I couldn't care less about the heroine, the hero was stuck in my mind as the asshole brother of the asshole hero in the previous book...
Instead of carrying on the intensity of the prologue, the difference in pace (and intrigue) in the first chapter was jarring, and having learned from the first book in this duology that improvement either in pace, characterization or intensity is unlikely, I went on to read the last chapter...And didn't get the urge to go back and read the whole thing.

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review 2017-06-21 16:37
Review: Irresistible Force (K-9 Rescue #1) by D.D. Ayres
Irresistible Force - D.D. Ayres

Review originally featured on Angel's Guilty Pleasures

 

Irresistible Force

K-9 Rescue #1
D.D. Ayres
Romantic Suspense - Contemporary Romance
St. Martin's Paperbacks
August 26th 2014
Paperback
305
Library

 

When adrenaline runs high, so does the force of desire…

 

For Shay Appleton, it’s love at first sight when a gorgeous stray dog is brought into the animal shelter where she works. She just knows he’ll make a terrific watch dog—and with an abusive ex who won’t let go, she needs all the protection she can get. But Shay never suspected that her new pet is actually a trained police K-9 named Bogart—until Bogart’s even more gorgeous, human partner shows up on her doorstep.

 

Officer James Cannon is one tall, strong alpha male who’s convinced that Shay stole his dog. But once he gets closer to the suspect, he realizes that this stubborn, independent woman not only needs a guard dog, she needs James as well. It seems that someone from her past is stalking her, and threatening her life. When danger meets desire, will James risk his career and his best friend…to protect the woman who’s stolen his heart?

 

Goodreads

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Kobo

Book Depository

 

 

Irresistible Force swept me into danger and romance.

 

James is looking for his missing partner, a K-9 named Bogart, and he runs cross Shay. These two have a little exchange and soon he’s drawn into her life and danger.

 

I LOVED Bogart. He stole my heart and James was perfect. Dogs have a way of pulling at your emotions and making you love them. I loved the relationship James has with his pup and seeing how he helps Shay, sweet. James was easy to like. Shay was ok, but she had a few to many hang-ups for me to fully like her. The story was fast-paced and I had fun with the story and leads. Theirs no shortage of action, suspense, and yummy bedroom scenes.

 

My only issues is that Shay and James sleep together on the first day they meet. I prefer reading about a couple that has spent sometime together before hopping into bed. Other then that, I had a delightful time and look forward to the next installment.

 

Rated: 3.5 Stars

 

Was this review helpful? If so, please consider liking it on Goodreads (Angela)!

 

 

 

 

Challenge(s): Library Love Pick Your Genre (Con) | New To Me (Author/Series) | Backlist Reader (2017)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Owner/Review and mind behind Angel’s Guilty Pleasures. However what I am not is a writer. I apologize now for the grammatical and punctuation errors I make, because I know I’m going to make them. I’m a mother, wife, dog owner, animal, and book lover. My favorite animals are horses. As for reading I love all things paranormal & urban fantasy. My favorite shifters are dragons!

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Source: angelsguiltypleasures.com/2017/06/review-irresistible-force-k-9-rescue-1-by-d-d-ayres
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