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review 2017-12-15 22:26
Review: Selected Poems of Langston Hughes by Langston Hughes
Selected Poems - Langston Hughes

I read this for the Winter Solstice square. I am not at all familiar with the Harlem Renaissance period, so I went in with no expectations or background knowledge other than I knew Hughes was a poet from this era.

 

Most of the work in this book is short; I could not really get the full picture of what Hughes was describing. I think part of my problem was how the book was sectioned; I really enjoyed the Magnolia section, but the Madam series and the Dream Deferred set were tedious to read after a while. Hughes writes to a beat that is hard to flow from one poem to the next. I'll be honest and say the most I enjoyed of his poetry is when he is talking about race and racism - he really got to the heart of the matter without fussy details and still had historical details to give context and more meaning behind the poem. Many of these poems dealt with the lingering consequences of slavery and the Civil War with the present day of Jim Crow and the migration of Southern blacks to the north and west during the late 1800s and early 1900s.

 

Because there was no unifying theme to the book, it felt like the poem's subjects were all over the place and there was no feel to poems connecting to create a big picture. As an introduction to Hughes work, it worked okay but I think it would be better to read his single published work rather than an omnibus.

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text 2017-06-02 15:24
Cold Nights, Hot Bodies by Lily Harlem Free!
BY Harlem, Lily ( Author ) [{ Cold Nights, Hot Bodies By Harlem, Lily ( Author ) Jun - 05- 2014 ( Paperback ) } ] - Lily Harlem

All my life I’ve been the quiet bookworm, the office mouse. It hasn’t bothered me. Immersing myself in erotic novels has kept me wriggling on the edge of my seat at work and firmly entrenched in my own fantasy world at night.

Though one thing is bothering me—my damn virginity. If only I could find a sexy bedroom expert to introduce me to the delights of having a lover. Someone handsome and charming, who can rival the hunky alpha males in my books. I have a very vivid, very well-fed imagination—he’ll have to keep up.

Then, one bitterly cold night, thanks to a devious, conniving, so-called friend, the perfect opportunity to rid myself of this pesky virginity problem comes along. Before I know it, the heroes in my novels have come alive in the person of Shane Galloway, who’s pleasuring me with every trick in the book and wheedling into my heart in the hottest ways possible.

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review 2017-05-01 00:00
British Bad Boys: A Bad Boy Romance Boxed Set
British Bad Boys: A Bad Boy Romance Boxe... British Bad Boys: A Bad Boy Romance Boxed Set - Marissa Farrar,Lily Harlem,Lucy Felthouse,K.D. Grace,Victoria Blisse,Lexie Bay,Tabitha Rayne Book: British Bad Boys: A Bad Boy Romance Boxed Set
Author: Marissa Farrar , Lily Harlem , Lucy Felthouse , K.D. Grace , Victoria Blisse , Lexie Bay , Tabitha Rayne
Publication Date: 5/4/2017
Reviewed by: Tammy Payne- Book Nook Nuts
My Rating: 5 Stars


REVIEW
This is a set compiled of several very sexy although short stories. Very entertaining. I am leaving a review for 6 of the 7.

Carved in Ink by Marissa Farrar
I absolutely loved this story. We get a young woman who inherits a tattoo shop from her late aunt. Only one problem Theresa must move to London.
Art is the tenant, and he is hiding a bit about things from his new landlord. One night almost ruins things for this couple. Fantastic, hot, sexy short read. I hope there is more to this one.

Fast Lust By Lucy Felthouse
New to me author:
Gloria is a reporter but not an exciting one until her boss has no choice but to send her into the lion's den so to speak. Her job is to interview a biker. Now how to do that?
She wants the underdog and thinks she has found it with Rafe or has she? Another really sexy read.

Heavy Metal Lust by Victoria Blisse
New to me author:
This story is hot! We get a younger man with an older woman. He is a rocker, and she is a single mom. Very sexy read indeed.


Innocent Lies by Lexie Bay
New to me author:
This story is not only sexy and hot it's suspenseful and a bit dark.
Raine is the daughter of a mobster who after losing his wife has become evil. Her brother Archie is no help and when daddy dearest passes her brother becomes just like dear old dad.
Enter Tommy, another mobster but one with a heart? This story is one heck of a good read.

In Training by K D Grace
New to me author:
Lauren is one heck of a PR person, so she is thrown big time when her boss puts her smack dab into a reality tv show. Wolf is a trainer and actor with a successful business.
He is all on board for this reality show until the woman he is to be training is someone he wants more than to train.
Sexy, and Hot!

The Gamesman by Tabitha Rayne
A Scottish Gamer and a Journalist what more could you want? Although Harriett wants Archie, he isn't feeling her the same way. This was one scorching short read.
[b:British Bad Boys: A Bad Boy Romance Boxed Set|34136905|British Bad Boys A Bad Boy Romance Boxed Set|Marissa Farrar|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1486380425s/34136905.jpg|55174158]
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review 2017-02-26 20:16
Beautifully written story of a lost in translation version of the American Dream
Behold the Dreamers - Imbolo Mbue

Thanks to NetGalley and to Harper Collings UK, 4th State for offering me an ARC copy of this book that I voluntarily review.

This novel, written by an author hailing from Cameroon, like her characters, tells us the story of the Jongas, a family of emigrants trying to make a go of life in the USA, more specifically in New York. Jende strikes it lucky at the beginning and gets a job as a chauffeur for Clark Edwards, a big executive for Lehman Brothers. That seems to open many opportunities for Jende and his family, paving the way for all their dreams to come true. Unfortunately, the undoing of Lehman, some personal issues in the Edwards family and the pressure of their unclear immigration status (Jende arrived with a 3 months’ busy that he’s overstayed, his wife has a student visa but they might not have enough money to finance her studies to become a pharmacist and their son would have to go back if the father does) change all that.

The story, written in the third person alternating the points of view of Jende and his wife, Neni, is full of details of the subjective experience of the characters, from the worries about their immigration status, the variety of connections with people from home (from parties, to disinterested advice, emotional support…), their feelings about New York (their favourite places, the cultural shock of confronting new rules, prices, weather, standards and extremes of poverty and richness), their initial shock and later better understanding of the Edwards lifestyle, the educational opportunities and the effect of the stress of their situation on their personal lives.

Both characters are credible, engaging and easy to empathise with, even when we might not agree with their actions and/or decisions. They also have dreams and wishes for their future and their family. To begin with, they both think the USA will change their lives and open up avenues they’d never be able to pursue back home. Jende couldn’t even marry Neni back home and his wife had to live with her parents and had no chance to study. Everything seems possible in the USA, but slowly it becomes clear that things aren’t as straightforward as they thought at first, that being white and rich in America doesn’t equal happiness, and that not everyone is prepared to give them a chance.

There are funny moments and also very sad ones (especially when the couple disagrees and their relationship becomes difficult) and one can’t help but become invested in the story and the future of the couple and their children, who become ersatz members of our family. If at times the Jongas appear as victims of circumstances and a system that they don’t understand, at others they take things into their own hands, and, whatever we might think about what they do, they act. The book is beautifully written and offers an insight into lives that might be different to ours but we can easily share in.

On a personal note, I was a bit disappointed by the ending, not so much by what happens but by how it comes about, and I wasn’t so sure the reactions of the main characters towards the end of the book were totally consistent with the personality they’d shown so far, although it might be possible to see it as a result of the extreme pressures they experience. What that would suggest of the likelihood that their Cameroonian dream will end up becoming a reality is the crux of the matter but something left to the imagination of the readers. The scene towards the end of the book between Clark Edwards and Jende Jonga where they share their future plans (both of them moving on to a future more in keeping with family values and less with work), makes us think of how differently the women of the book see things compared to their men. Gender relations are one of the most interesting and troubling aspects of the novel.

A solid book with great characters that deals with important issues (domestic violence, family relations, cultural differences, immigration, asylum seeking, race relations, the Lehman Brothers and the economic crisis following its fall, the American Dream…), is a joy to read and it will make you consider many those topics from a different point of view.  

 

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review 2016-10-04 00:40
Russian Heat (Hot Ice #7) by Lily Harlem
Russian Heat (Hot Ice Book 7) - Lily Harlem

Lily Harlem’s Russian Heat melts the ice with its heat factor.  Flight attendant Samantha Headington and NHL player Vadmir Arefyev plan on having a one-night-stand but faith has other things in store.  This contemporary sports romance takes place in Florida and Russia.  It is suitable for adult audiences.

 

I enjoyed Samantha’s character.  She reminded me of Samantha Jones (Kim Cattrall) from Sex and the City.  She likes her designer clothes.  She seems put-together and classy.  She enjoys sex and gets what she wants.  I like Vadmir.  He is a good son and brother.  I appreciate that he takes care of his family.  He is very generous.  I found it amusing how he kept getting his slang wrong, and Samantha kept correcting him.  Samantha and Vadmir have hot chemistry.  They are a fun couple.  They get along great and complement one another. 

 

I enjoyed the plot.  I thought it was clever how Samantha’s and Vadmir’s one-night-stand turned into more.  I loved the Russian aspect of the story.  My parents were both born in Hungary.  A lot of the culture is similar, and I found myself relating.  The story had some interesting twists and complications.  Russian Heat is an enjoyable read.  It had a good ending.  I also, liked the bonus Hot Ice short story, Rookie Rules. 

 

Complimentary copy provided in exchange for an honest review.

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