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review 2018-10-16 00:28
My review of How the Dukes Stole Christmas by Tessa Dare, Sarah MacLean, Sophie Jordan & Joanna Shupe
How the Dukes Stole Christmas: A Holiday Romance Anthology - Sophie Jordan,Sarah MacLean,Tessa Dare,Joanna Shupe

How the Dukes Stole Christmas: A Holiday Romance Anthology - Sarah MacLean,Tessa Dare,Joanna Shupe,sophie jordan 

 

For starters, DUKES! I don’t care how many make-believe dukes have been created, I’ll read them for as long as they keep writing them. Secondly, Christmas! I’ll admit that I prefer to read dark, scary, paranormal stories during the month of October, but c’mon, who can say no to Christmas stories, specially when they are written by some of your favorite authors and they all come together in one pretty package!
And that actually brings me to say that thirdly, it’s freaking Tessa Dare, Sarah MacLean, Sophie Jordan, and Joanna Shupe, what?! If you haven’t read books by them then let me tell you, you are missing out on some serious awesomeness. And in case you haven’t noticed, I’m a super fan of all of these ladies so forgive me if I gush too much.

 

Tessa Dare’s Meet Me in Mayfair was clever, funny, and oh, so romantic. It probably is one of the most charming and memorable “date” nights I have ever read.

Sarah MacLean’s The Duke of Christmas Present is a second-chance love story. There were some serious tug-at-your-heart scenes, specially when the heroine returns “home.” It was kind of hard for me to understand the reasoning behind both the hero and heroine’s actions but once I got to the end, everything made complete sense.

 

Sophie Jordan’s Heiress Alone was another great example of how chemistry between hero and heroine affects a story, even if it’s a short one and even if the romance happens rather quickly.

 

Joanna Shupe’s Christmas in Central Park had me worrying and suffering along with the poor heroine, and had me wanting to slap the hero upside the head for acting like a spoiled brat that just had to have his way. Their love story may had been full of funny and cringe-worthy moments but the way their forgive and reach their HEA made it all worth it.

 

In short, four different settings, four different kinds of delicious dukes, four great Christmas stories, and one happy reader that recommends this set to all historical romance lovers. Even if Christmas is not your cup of tea, the romance alone make this a perfect read. 4.5 stars.

 

*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 2018-10-06 19:48
If you’ve a fan of and have read ‘The Harrisburg Railers’ series...
Ryker - F. Scott Fitzgerald,V.L. Locey

than you know who Ryker is and at the very least can probably skip the rest of this paragraph. If you’re not you can probably still read this book and not feel lost but honestly, I think you’ll enjoy it even more if you’ve read the series or at least the first book which has Ryker’s father, Jared Madsen as one of the MC’s along with Jared’s partner Tennant Rowe. We’ve gotten glimpses of Ryker here and there throughout the series but nowhere more than ‘Changing Lines’, book 1 of the Harrisburg Railers and now here in his own book.

 

Not only is Ryker the son of a well-known hockey player turned coach who’s living openly with his partner and hockey’s golden boy Tennant Rowe, the youngest of hockey’s Rowe brothers. He’s also the grandson of a well-known old timer and all he’s ever wanted is to follow in the footsteps of his father and grandfather and make them proud, so relationships are not something that factor into his life there’s no time not when you want to be one of the best.

 

Jacob Benson’s had a very different life growing up in a small rural farming community where he’s struggled alongside of his family to keep their dairy farm going. For Jacob hockey has become a means to an end…college hockey means scholarships and a chance at an agricultural science degree…a chance to learn things that could help him save his family’s farm. It’s not that he doesn’t like or want to play hockey…it’s just that for Jacob, hockey’s not the end game, but a means to an end and between his studies, hockey and working 2 jobs to pay for the things that his scholarship doesn’t. Jacob has even less time than Ryker for a relationship but try as they might neither one of these young men can bring themselves to truly walk away and really it’s just a summer fling right?

 

I loved Jacob and Ryker together, sure there were moment of immaturity and at times I found Jacob to be a bit judgey but he’s young…they’re both young and I don’t know about anyone else but some of my finer moments happened at this age, when I was young and silly enough to think I knew everything unlike now when I’m happy to realize that with any luck I know something…any little thing!!!

 

There are events from Goal Line book #6 of the Harrisburg Railers that get revisited in this story but it’s relevant and if you haven’t read that series it’s very helpful background information to have.

 

When Jacob and Ryker first meet there’s a bit of animosity between them, but as they get to know each other both men realize that if they’re ever going to get to know each other they’ll need to set aside their preconceived notions.

 

Ryker may be dedicated to being the best hockey player he can, but it doesn’t mean that he doesn’t understand that sometimes a person just needs to relax and unwind a bit something that Jacob doesn’t see as a priority or seem to have the time for. While Jacob helps Ryker look at things from a different and more personal perspective and not just as abstract concepts.

 

Ultimately when all is said and done together Jacob and Ryker help each other to grow and mature as they discover that even though they both have full and busy lives when it comes to love there’s always room for more.

I’m looking forward to seeing what comes next in this series we’ve been introduced to some of the Owatonna Eagles and I definitely want more about Ben and Scott and I won’t deny it I’m also on the lookout for more about the Harrisburg Railers should the occasion arise.

 

After all I am Canadian and R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey have become two of my favorite ‘Hockey Night in Canada’ announcers.

 

***************************

 

An ARC of ‘Ryker’ was graciously provided by the authors in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2018-09-02 17:30
These cowboys just weren't working for me...
Cowboy in the Crosshairs - B.A. Tortuga

I'm not sure where I'm at with this one. As a rule I love B.A. Tortuga's books but this one...well, honestly I just wasn't feeling it and there were a couple of things that just bugged the hell out of me. However, the narrator did a solid job and I enjoyed listening to him...so kudo's to Dorian Bane and as for the rest well as soon as I get my brain sorted out a full review and rating will follow....

 

So I've been sitting on this one for a couple of days now because B.A. Tortuga is totally one of my favorite authors and I have to admit of all her books that I've read this one has unfortunately turned out to be one of my least favorites. Try as I might it just was not meant to be and I'm pretty sure it's as much me as anything. So I'm not going to spend a lot of time examining things. I'm just going to say that as far as the relationship went I just wasn't feeling it and there was a couple of things that well...quite honestly really annoyed me so for me this one was a bust but not a total loss I very much enjoyed the narrations of Dorian Bane and whatever wasn't working it certainly had nothing to do with the narrator. I'm a fan of gravelly voiced cowboys and truthfully I'm still very much a fan of Ms Tortuga as well...just not this particular story.

 

*************************

An audio book of 'Cowboy in the Crosshairs' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2018-08-21 23:18
Dear RJ Scott...
Second Chance Ranch - RJ Scott

Could you please, kindly stop making me cry first thing in the morning...yep, once again I started my day in tears because of you.

 

But while we're at it thanks for making some of them happy tears that helped a lot...

 

full review to follow soonish!

 

‘Second Chance Ranch’ is the 5th book in R.J. Scott’s Montana series and for me it was also the ultimate in 2nd  chance stories. While I’ve enjoyed all of the stories in this series and this may have been the 5th book in the series it’s absolutely #1 as my favorite book of the series so far.

 

We’ve seen glimpses of Rob in some of the previous books he was a part of the Justin’s life during his missing years…a part that Justin never wanted to see again, but things have changed for Rob and he’s in desperate need of help and with Justin being the closest thing he has to a friend…where else can he go?

 

And we’ve seen glimpses of Aaron in previous stories as well…Aaron is one of the Carter brothers, there are 5 in total…there’s Sheriff Ryan Carter, we met him as one of the MCs in ‘Snow in Montana’, along with Jason the fire fighter, Karl the owner of Carters (the local bar/pub) and Eddie the accountant. I know after 3 adrenalin junkies and the owner of the local night life hotspot…an accountant seems a bit bizarre, but it is what it is. You’re probably thinking so why does this matter but trust me on this one it matters because all of these people matter to some degree, at some point in one or more of these stories and as well as being Aaron and Rob’s story there’s another story playing out in the background for another one of the Carter brothers.

 

Overall in this series we actually have 4 families who are central to this series the Todds, the Allens and the Strachans, the 3 families that founded/own/manage ‘Crooked Tree Ranch’ and the Carters whose family may not be a part of the ranch but are very much a part of the Crooked Tree family all the same.

 

In each of the books in this series we’ve been given the answers to a bigger mystery one that began when the men in these stories were very young and now with this 5th installment in the Montana series we get a story that’s come full circle…what started on The Crooked Tree Ranch has come back as Rob comes to the ranch looking for help for himself and his nephews.

 

Rob’s plan is to make sure his nephews have a home, a place where they’ll be safe and then his list is finished, and he’ll be disappearing for the last time, except by the time he’s ready to go it’s to late and all Aaron wants is for him to stay…ok, that pretty much sets the scene now for the important stuff…

 

This book…I don’t even know where to begin with this one. I was neither expecting nor was I prepared for how many feelz were in this story. I’m not even going to go into the how’s or whys of it but this one kind of crept up on me with how much it made my heartache. I really liked both Rob and Aaron from the minute they first met. Their interactions felt good, right…natural.  There was snark so much awesome snark…sorry, I’m a fan of this and with these two if it had been any different I think I would have been disappointed.

 

While I’ve enjoyed all of the stories in this series with ‘Second Chance Ranch’ R.J. Scott has brought this one to life for me in a way that hadn’t happened yet and she made me cry…seriously there was me lying in bed early in the morning thinking I don’t feel like getting up yet, I’ll just quietly lie here and read. I can be nice and let the hubby sleep and that’s what I did…until…that’s right until the tears started the big ugly, gulping sobbing tears that I had to try and stifle so that I wouldn’t wake people up and then when I’d almost got them under control the other tears started…you know the ones I mean, the ones that are streaming down your face while you’re sitting there holding your breath whispering ‘yes, yes, thank you so much.’ because the author…that person who could have left you broken with your sadness has fixed you…so, thank you R.J. not for making me cry those ugly tears but for remembering to fix me.

 

‘Second Chance Ranch’ is for me the best one yet but only if you read it last.

 

*************************

 

An ARC of Second Chance Ranch was graciously provided by the author in exchange for an honest

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review 2018-07-29 19:19
Rogue Be A Lady (Must Love Rogues Book 6) by Eva Devon
Rogue Be A Lady - Eva Devon

Rogue Be A Lady (Must Love Rogues Book 6) - Eva Devon 


Emmaline is a well known actress in the continent ready to debut in London, ready to show all those people that condemned her without cause that she’s a survivor, and ready to show the man that cause her demise she is better off without him. 
Edward cannot forgive himself for what he did to Emmaline. He knows she is what she is because of his twisted views on propriety and perfection. His family has tried to make amends but will she ever forgive him?
Sixth book in the series, it can definitely be read as a standalone. Even though it was a short read it still was satisfyingly romantic. The chemistry between Edward and Emmaline was palpable and their way to their HEA believable. While I would have loved it if the path to their HEA was longer, all in all it was a good read and I will definitely be reading the next book in the series and more from this author. 

**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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