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review 2018-03-04 02:50
Blue Sage (Western Lovers: Ranch Rogues #2) - Anne Stuart

I ponder a lot, about these characters who stay in small towns where they're miserable. I really ponder why this town continues to exist. Seems like such a tragedy in a town that barely qualifies for a truck stop (with no gas station...where do people gas up?). the kindest thing would be for the whole town to die. And of course, I wonder why something like what happened would keep being rehashed.

 

So basically, the past is that the H's father, a Korean war vet, had...issues...from his time there. And the H's mother, freaked out by him, left with the H, then a 2 year old. 15 years later, he snapped during the 4th of July, and shot a bunch of people. It is implied that prior to this, a bunch of animals in the area turned up dead, at his hand. The h was the lone survivor among the victims - she was shot in the knee.

 

The H has spent the last 15 years having people look at him suspiciously due to who his father was. I kinda puzzled at that. His almost-step-father insists that he go back to his parents' home town and well, figure things out.

 

The h has become, whether she wanted to or not, the town martyr. She wants out. The town judge took her in by marrying her (he's dead now), and well, everyone takes care of her...until she sleeps with the H, then they turn on her like rabid dogs. (see "why do people remain in small towns when they're miserable?"). He stays away for a bit and they sort of forgive her, deciding she's been victimized again (well, yeah - by them).

 

In the meantime, someone is planning on recreating the tragedy. The H's reappearance is v. convenient as everyone suspects him. The person makes their move against the h, the H for whatever reason goes back and gets her untied, then they go and avert disaster.

 

As stated earlier, I don't get why the h had stayed there. I don't get why she let herself get railroaded into a marriage (no relatives apparently). I don't get a lot of things about this set up really.

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review 2018-03-02 18:06
Glass Houses (Men at Work: Tall, Dark & Smart #11) - Anne Stuart

Dude on cover looks more like your friendly neighborhood MD or pharmacist than a business tycoon.

 

Heroine owns art deco high rise in NY (and also a modeling agency). Hero is developer who wants to put in a modern plaza on the block her building occupies - the whole block. Alrighty then.

 

I do get that real estate is like, gold there. Seems though that some nods to an architectural gem should be made. I mean; I'm trying to imagine the architect who'd brush off something like that so casually. And maybe thinking they're in the wrong business. Just imagining the reaction if word got out that someone wanted to bring down the Chrysler building and put in a soulless high rise.

 

But that's neither here, nor there. It's just that as a plot point, it's kinda weak. And well, there's not much said about how the surrounding buildings were brought down.

So our H is determined to buy, and our h is determined not to sell. And because his lawyer is having no luck, he decides to try himself. It does backfire on him, because she gets under his skin. It's one of those frenemy sort of things - once contact is made, he keeps finding reasons to see her, even though things always seem to end in an argument...except when they don't.

 

There's a lot of other drama that's kind of filler - a new model for her agency, who tries to blackmail them, the model's ex who wants to know if he really is an ex (because the cow didn't just tell him; she slunk off), the receptionist and her as-yet unrequited crush on a male model (which gets resolved. Yay?). There's also the H knowing the report that the building needs some serious work because it's becoming unstable and using this knowledge to cause damage to the structure.

 

Eventually, the damage has results - the building has to be evacuated. The h, in a moment of enlightenment, signs the papers, gives her receptionist half the agency, and leaves for CA.

 

As grand gestures go, I'd guess deciding to remodel the old building while having new plans drawn up for the rest of the block is a pretty grand one. And it gets her attention - she comes back...and signs that last bit of paperwork she'd ignored all attempts by lawyers to get signed. It's a prenuptial agreement. Sneaky. V. sneaky. She didn't even look at it first; just signed it.

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review 2017-10-07 23:26
Now You See Him... - Anne Stuart

It could have been a 4 if our H hadn't been so bloody determined to send the h on her way "for her own good". Since he's a spy, and she, unknowingly, is the daughter of an Irish terrorist (who died when she was a tot, ostensibly by drowning but actually attempting to plant a bomb) who had another daughter who is now a fanatic...and wants her dead just because she exists... yeah, you can see how well this works. He almost succeeded once but called her for some inexplicable reason which prompted her to try to hunt him down. She didn't know he was a spy (he was undercover) so got the shock of her life to find out there actually was a person by that name but it wasn't him...and she got angry and started looking for him.

 

There's a lot of book packed in this, and some other things bothered me too - her lack of subtlety, her strange determination to help the Irish cause. Yes her sperm donor was Irish, but she was American. Her being independently wealthy yet having cousins who were hillbillies. And for some reason, she was sure he was lying yet it never occurred to her that maybe he was lying about everything.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-09-23 03:19
The Spinster and the Rake
The Spinster and the Rake - Anne Stuart

My review contains spoilers and they're mostly my thoughts...

I’ve read and heard many good things about Anne Stuart’s books over the years, which definitely made me wanna read her books. But hers is such a daunting backlist that I wasn’t sure where to freakin’ start! Until recently, I, kind of on a whim, bought one of her latest reissue of an oldie called The Spinster and the Rake. The straight-forward title intrigued me and I liked the blurb cause spinsters and wallflowers are my favorites (by now, I’d be called both if I was living in that era :P). Rakes aren’t my favorite by any stretch of the word BUT an author can make me fall unquestionably in love with one. It has happened so I still take chances on them.

I read Anne Stuart’s rakes are moody and broody… sometimes seriously bad. Something told me she knows what she’s doing, so I went with that instinct and wanted to find out what havoc this latest rake in is wrecking. ;) Our hero, Ronan Blakely, the newly minted Marquess of Herrington, used to be what you’d call the proverbial ‘blacksheep’ of his family. His womanizing was so bad, at one point, when he tried to be off with a married woman someone had to step in. He was made to leave the country at the age of 22. Since then he’s had his share of fun in various European countries including France and Italy (latter is my assumption but no doubt he’s visited many other places too). He was not in the line of any succession but fate worked his way, and he’s back to the bosom of le bon Ton with a new title, and more money than he could possibly know what to do with. After 20 yrs., even with more than a few gray hairs peeking, Ronan Blakely is still as dashing and as devastating as he used to be at 22. And he knows just what to do with all he’s got; open a gambling club with the money and use his suave charm to operate it. Oooh, did anyone say Derek Craven? *imagine heart-eyes here*

But I digress... Let’s talk about our h.

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text 2017-07-11 22:05
The Spinster and the Rake by Anne Stuart $1.99
The Spinster and the Rake - Anne Stuart

The Spinster: As a maiden aunt, Gillian Redfern lives as an unpaid servant to her demanding family. Little wonder she finds the attentions of a rake distracting, and even less wonder that her usual good sense begins to unravel when Lord Marlow takes her in his arms.

The Rake: Ronan Patrick Blakely, Lord Marlow, is a man of great charm and little moral character, a gambler, a womanizer, and handsome as sin to boot. He has no qualms about placing a wager on the virtue of one small, shy spinster.

But Lord Marlow is about to discover that Miss Redfern is more siren than spinster. She amuses him, arouses him, and, much to his dismay, makes him a better man. Gillian will discover, in turn, that Lord Marlow possesses the power to turn her into a very wicked woman. The rake and the spinster are poised to find a love that neither could have imagined.

If only someone weren't out to destroy them both . . .

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