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Search tags: kyraryker-review
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review 2017-04-23 18:34
All in the family
Rags-To-Riches Bride - Mary Nichols

I hate to do this to y'all, but the most important thing I think you need to know about this story is also a spoiler. It's hinted at but you don't learn the truth until around the 70 or 80% mark, but I MUST say it because, well, if you read the spoiler you'll understand.

THEY HAVE THE SAME GREAT-GRANDFATHER. I think the author said it made their relationship second cousins (she also added a "once removed" but the character that said it made it sound like she wasn't sure). I'm sure this is fine for some but for me,

It's talked about how the heroine looks exactly like the great-grandmother at that age and all the talk of similarities was too in the family for me.

(spoiler show)

 

Moving on, the spoiler basically just put a cherry on what I would call a meh book. If you're looking for a clean read, this would be for you but also be aware the romance is slow and meandering. I liked the heroine and hero together but while at times they had chemistry, their dialogue could also be a bit stiff. This is a Mills & Boon and it comes with the more stiff upper lip reserved story and characters.

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review 2017-04-17 23:28
Iron Age
The King's Executioner (Pict King Series) (Volume 1) - Donna Fletcher

Love the Iron age time period this is set in, was fresh and intriguing as the majority of historicals published are regency and Victorian. Besides the clothing and looks of our characters I would have liked a bit more to the details of the time period so I could enjoy it more.
I rounded up because of the different setting and the fabulous cover, lol, but this road romance had a lot of rinse and repeat to it. Paine and Anin traveling, danger, Anin scared and/or needs to be rescued, and ending with Anin hugging Paine. This happened over and over, I found myself wanting to skim and skip.
The time period makes this fresh but the romance is a bit insta and the repeating danger then hugs, made this road romance a little dragging

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review 2017-04-14 23:59
Heroine gets the all the credit
Tortured - Amanda McIntyre

"You have spoken the truth and perhaps it makes you feel better to do so. It is no secret that I am no lady, but at least I do not pretend to be something I am not. You, on the other hand, wear your piety on your sleeve for all to see, when inside you are just as prone to lust and cruelty as the rest of us."

"That is enough," he stated flatly.

"People like me and Cearl, we're nothing in your eyes. You are not able to see past your preconceived judgments of me. You see a filthy face, tattered clothes and the life I did not choose, and still you judge me for what I must do to survive."

"This conversation is over." He glanced at her, then turned away.

"I do not fit into your idea of a lady," she continued, "because my hair is not long. Because I do not wear the clothes of a proper maiden, or act helpless and in need of a big strapping arse like yourself."

He looked at her then and his gaze narrowed.

"Maybe you are so put off by me because you know I do not need you to survive. I have lived through hell without your help and I can certainly continue to live without you."

 

This is a dark ages set erotica and it doesn't play around with shying away from the time period. There is brutal torture, rape, murder, and unwashed bodies. I personally couldn't get too much into the hot and sexy swing of things because most sex scenes happened after torture and while our heroine enjoys her sexual side, I couldn't shake the influence of necessity. Basically, a chicken or the egg conundrum was taking place in my mind if she naturally enjoyed sex or her imprisonment and survival convinced her she enjoyed it. She mentions how her sexual relationship with a fellow prisoner is the only way she can escape for a while her awful life, which I was ok with but the fellow prisoner wasn't great in bed, so not getting the sexy there, lol. The relationship with the hero was ok but their sex scenes came after torture, dude had his pinky tip cut off and was whipped (not the consensual kind) and somehow still felt up for sexy times. I get a hangnail and I don't want to be touched for 48hrs; I couldn't change gears so fast. 

 

I saw another reviewer mention how she felt like the villain and heroine had more chemistry and even though it icks me out too, I agree. If you're into dark ages erotica, this would be a great pick, it had a wonderful authentic (well, fictional authentic) feel to it. My mind just couldn't go with the flow or change gears to get into the erotic side. However, the survive and going to get my rocks off heroine was great.  

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review 2017-04-13 05:35
Hard-Hearted Highlander by Julia London
Hard-Hearted Highlander (The Highland Grooms) - Julia London

This story was not for me, at all. As much as I loved the first in the series, I did not like this one.

No, men didn't intimidate her. No one intimidated her.

Our heroine is now a lady's maid after eloping with a dude below her station. Her dad wasn't having it, got the marriage annulled and sent the dude away on a ship.

ship sunk, dude died

(spoiler show)

  She's twenty-nine and after living through the disillusionment of happily ever after, she has a bit of a crusty outer layer. I generally liked her, but the numerous sad inner thoughts passages didn't endear her to me so much as keep any momentum between her and the hero from getting rolling.

"You are wretched, Rabbie MacKenzie."

Took the words right out of my mouth. Seriously, the hero goes beyond depressed, grumpy, or broody, he's a d*ck. His rudeness towards his fiancée (who heroine works for) is completely uncalled for. I get it, he doesn't want to marry her, and he’s depressed and still hurting from his first love. Oh that's right, not only is there a fiancée to compete with the heroine but also a lost first love. He comes off immature and d*ckish with his attitude towards everything. I would have accepted standoffish with the fiancée, 'cause hey, she's not the heroine, but his attitude made me severely dislike him.

Not being able to connect with the hero and heroine definitely led to me not feeling their romance. It was probably also the occasional flashbacks to the hero falling in love, with the first woman. I would unscientifically guess that 70% of this story is the hero and heroine bemoaning their losses. They both have reason to, hero missing his first love and the utter devastation the English caused in the Highlands after the failed Jacobite rebellion (no specific history mentioned, except for Culloden referenced, it felt weirdly like the author was trying to give us the emotions from this without giving a solid focus on it) and the heroine had a miscarriage (not a spoiler, told pretty soon).

I'm going to put this next part in spoiler quotes because if you know the outcome, it might ruin some reading enjoyment.

There is a sort of secondary romance where the hero's fiancée starts to become attracted to his brother, because he is at least decent to her. However, after completely misleading the reader it turns out the brother does not like the fiancée, at all. I wanted to scream to the heaven's "WHAT WAS THE POINT?" The portrayal of the fiancée was so mean, lol. She's only 17 and naïve but holy guacamole is the hero mean to her, the heroine says she's a friend but bangs her fiancée and kind of talks smack about her, and then the guy who she thinks likes her, is like no way jose. So mean.

(spoiler show)



Basically, I found the hero mean, too many long hero and heroine inner sad musings, and the impediments to their relationship weren't resolved until waaaaay late in the story; I spent most the time wondering where the romance was in this romance. Also, there was a hero with his first love flashback in the EPILOGUE. Like, no. I get this was supposed to be emotional reminiscing about lost loves because of society and war but for me, it badly missed the mark.

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review 2017-04-11 02:01
Once a Courtesan by Liana LeFey
Once a Courtesan (Once Wicked) - Liana LeFey

Second in the Once Wicked series, this story focuses on Jacqueline, the headmistress of a school that secretly takes in girls saved from brothels and helps create new lives for them. As the purpose of the school deals with sex and child exploitation, along with Jacqueline's abusive past, this story had more of a solemn tone. I have to say, the beginning of this and first half was very slow going. I would almost categorize this as fiction with some mystery instead of romance. The author calmly and steadily integrated us into Jacqueline's mission of running the school and Will's job of infiltrating the school and investigating it, but separately. Our main couple had met and deemed each other attractive but they didn't really intertwine until almost halfway through. The last 40% of the story picked up and things moved very quickly in regards to the mystery and danger from the villain. All in all, I felt the author stretched out and spent too much time on characters' inner musings while not connecting our hero and heroine sooner; a lot of the story was not what I came here for.

Full review can be read at: Reading Between the Wines book club

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