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review 2017-06-22 16:19
Claimed by Elle Kennedy
Claimed: An Outlaws Novel (The Outlaws Series) - Elle Kennedy

Are you effing kidding me?!

What did I just (attempt) to read?

Was there a plot? A point? I’ll settle for an idea. Maybe a concept?

This was pure PWP that just happened to be set in a dystopian future (end of world-building) and featured a bunch of hot young people orgy-ing their way through life (end of character development). I didn’t stick around to “learn” more.

I’ll just stick with her Harlequin/Silhouette contributions. At least those have some sort of plot.

(Oh, and by the way, communism is an ideal that has never been truly achieved, no matter what your historical books might tell you. Communism done right does not need a totalitarian regime, hence being an ideal never before achieved. And probably never will. The “communism” we all know or have heard about is a bastardized concept of the original, unachievable idea.)

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review 2017-03-13 07:12
Hudson & Maverick by Ellis Leigh
Hudson: Motor City Alien Mail Order Brides #2 (Intergalactic Dating Agency) - Ellis Leigh
Maverick: Motor City Alien Mail Order Brides #3 (Intergalactic Dating Agency) - Ellis Leigh

HUDSON

Hudson finally gets the news he's been waiting for for so long—he's been matched. When he meets her, he finds out he's been matched to a beautiful little woman who smells of dead things. A veritable perfume for a hunter.

Macy's been pimped by her own sister. Her twin, Stacy, had applied her for a mail-order-bride deal posing as her, and now that she's been matched, Macy cannot find it in herself to renege on the "deal". Especially when the deal comes in a package like Hudson.


After the first story in this little trilogy, Cutlass, that was cute, sweet, sexy, and funny, this came as a disappointment. I liked the hero, although he lacked the humorous cultural-gab moments of his predecessor, but I disliked the heroine with her codependence with her manipulative sister, and her complete inability to send the aforementioned sister to hell.
I understand the whole cancer-scare thing, but it was a long time ago, and letting her twin walk all over her, making everything about herself, literally cockblocking her on the date Stacy herself helped put in motion, was a bit too much.

Also, the story lacked the ease and fun of its predecessor, sounding rather forced.

 

 

MAVERICK

I was looking forward to Maverick's story since the beginning of this trilogy, because the grumpiest usually fall the hardest, but I couldn't have been more disappointed if I tried.

I hated his heroine with a passion. Bossy, brash, self-centered, egotistical and bitchy Stacy couldn't have been redeemed no matter what happened. I felt a sliver of empathy somewhere around the half mark, but she ruined it all soon afterward when she couldn't have been bothered with actually sticking around and listening, preferring to wallow in self-pity.

It was always and all about her. Maverick sure deserved better.

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review 2016-10-08 09:51
Caiden by V. Vaughn
Caiden: Greenville Mail Order Brides #1 (Intergalactic Dating Agency Book 6) - V. Vaughn

In a (not-so-distant-future) half of the male population has been wiped out by a freak plague, leaving the unscathed women to fend for themselves to see to their sexual needs. Some use government approved toys, some settle for one-night stands...For the rest there's a new "exchange" program, still in beta-testing, to import males from a recently-appeared planet, Eroscia, where men are in abundance.

Mandy Thorne's best friend Lexi is the one in charge of beta-testing the new "dating app", but Mandy is the one that pushes the "initiate match" button while fiddling with it. The result: her future husband will be delivered to her doorstep the next morning. The caveat: no sex before the wedding.


In a (not-so-distant-future) half of the male population has been wiped out by a freak plague, leaving the unscathed women to fend for themselves to see to their sexual needs. Some use government approved toys, some settle for one-night stands...For the rest, there's a new "exchange" program, still in beta-testing, to import males from a recently-appeared planet, Eroscia, where men are in abundance.

Mandy Thorne's best friend Lexi is the one in charge of beta-testing the new "dating app", but Mandy is the one that pushes the "initiate match" button while fiddling with it. The result: her future husband will be delivered to her doorstep the next morning. The caveat: no sex before the wedding.


The blurb with the rule-breaking and punishment-facing was promising, but unfortunately that happened in the last two chapters of this 11-chapter story. And even that wasn't as promising as the blurb might hint at.

But let's start at the beginning. The story is told from Mandy's (first-person) POV, but since Mandy sounded like a fifteen-year-old, I was the opposite of impressed. She was immature, abhorred getting bossed about by men (probably thanks to living in a women-ruled society), but had no qualms in bossing her hero around all the time. Even when he specifically told her they were breaking the rules, that there might be consequences, the entitled female simply waved her hand in that no-one-will-know-so-what-can-possibly-happen way.

Well, turns out they did know and something did happen. I wished for the punishment to be harsher (for Mandy, to teach her a much needed lesson), but unfortunately they both got it pretty easy.

Since the story was told from an immature chick's POV there was no possibility to actually get to know the hero, besides the fact he was apparently hot and had cool alien telekinetic ability to "touch" the heroine without actually touching her (in the end, he actually caressed her heart, which is either really gross, or cause for alarm, because it might've been a serious condition and not the touch of her alien, but I digress). He's also bossy and doesn't listen when someone warns him about imbibing too much. A typical male, then. And without personality. At least he knew English and didn't sound like an idiot.

So, we had an immature heroine (without much personality), a cardboard cutout of a hero (without personality), an uninteresting and rather redundant plot with absolutely no conflict despite what the blurb claims.

What a disappointing waste of nary an hour. If it were longer, it would be a DNF.

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review 2016-10-06 11:01
Spark by Michelle M. Pillow
Spark: Galaxy Alien Mail Order Brides (Intergalactic Dating Agency) - Michelle M. Pillow

Kal has tricked his cousins, Vin and Sev, into signing up with the Galaxy Mail Order Brides Agency. Well, he’s forged their signatures, but they’re already on their way to Earth, so there’s no turning back. Kal wants to meet a woman, have some fun, and make memories that will keep him company when he’s alone again, back on his home planet, mining ash.

But Kal, Earth name Spark, didn’t count with the strange reluctance of Earthling woman he’s encountered. They can’t seem to run fast enough away from him, despite his honesty. Then there’s the one who told him honesty must come in smaller doses...And then disappeared with a cryptic remark about Fate. He doesn’t know this Fate person, but he’s determined to find him if it’ll help him find the woman again. Everything on this backward planet is strange, from the mating rituals to the language, but he’s determined to master it all, if it means finding her.


This one started promising. The first two chapters, concentrating on the “separate entities” of the hero (and his two cousins) and heroine were good, but it all went downhill pretty fast as soon as the two worlds collided.

The hero sounded and acted like an idiot. I know they’re supposed to be from another planet and the cultural differences are enormous, but still, an intelligent being learns to adapt and seeks multiple sources of knowledge, not just porn and male-stripper videos. Or maybe that’s just what I would do.
The heroine turned into a bimbo the moment she laid eyes on the hero, and every attempt at making her not appear shallow (like her background and her charity fork or whatever the hell she did) fell flat, and only made her appear like the one-dimensional character that she was.

The suspense, if you could call it that, felt rather redundant. Almost as if it were added just to create additional conflict and increase the page-count, while also offering an easy, rather deus ex machina solution to the heroine’s skepticism.

The entire story felt redundant, actually. No depth, no personality to the characters and no chemistry between them, it felt like it was written as an afterthought by someone with very little time.

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review 2016-10-01 14:11
Quantum by Erin Kellison
Quantum: Red Rock Alien Mail Order Brides 1 (Intergalactic Dating Agency) - Erin Kellison

They met on a spaceship, she running from a telekinetic alien while searching for her brother, he escaping imprisonment by the same telekinetic alien. They struck a bargain, the stone he hid in her purse for her brother, and a strange partnership was born. A partnership that brought lost comrades back together, a partnership that might turn into more...Life permitting.


Another great installment in the Intergalactic Dating Agency series, though the IGDA plays a very minor role in the story.

Engaging characters; I loved both Raider and Sophie, him a marshmallow-y brute with an ironclad code of honor, her a stubbornly resilient woman determined to save her brother no matter the cost. The romance was perfect, slowly progressing from initial mistrust, through grudging respect and maybe even friendship, to love honed by fire. The supporting cast was awesome and I can't wait to read more about Leif, Hacker, Nina, and Cindy as well in all her alien-y glory.
Interesting story, great suspense and action scenes, a bit of the old tugging-at-the-heartstrings before the "do-over". The length was just right, the pacing spot-on, the voice and narrative style engaging...I truly cannot wait for the rest.

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