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review 2017-08-22 17:48
Mistress of Mellyn / Victoria Holt
Mistress of Mellyn - Victoria Holt

Mount Mellyn stood as proud and magnificent as she had envisioned...But what about its master--Connan TreMellyn? Was Martha Leigh's new employer as romantic as his name sounded? As she approached the sprawling mansion towering above the cliffs of Cornwall, an odd chill of apprehension overcame her. TreMellyn's young daugher, Alvean, proved as spoiled and difficult as the three governesses before Martha had discovered. But it was the girl's father whose cool, arrogant demeanor unleashed unfamiliar sensations and turmoil--even as whispers of past tragedy and present danger begin to insinuate themselves into Martha's life. Powerless against her growing desire for the enigmatic Connan, she is drawn deeper into family secrets--as passion overpowers reason, sending her head and heart spinning. But though evil lurks in the shadows, so does love--and the freedom to find a golden promise forever...

 

***2017 Summer Lovin’ Reading List***

After two misses, it was nice to score a hit. Apparently, I am an old-fashioned woman. I prefer a story with some mystery, some history, and some romance. Leave out the sex scenes and let’s have an actual plot, please.

Stereotypical as can be, Mistress of Mellyn gave me the usual Victoria Holt offering. An impoverished gentlewoman with no options except being a governess, a student with potential and problems, an attractive employer with an air of mystery, another man to distract our heroine a bit, plus another woman to get the jealous juices flowing.

Yes, I’ve read it all before, but yes I still enjoyed it.

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review 2017-08-22 17:46
Dark Lover / J.R. Ward
Dark Lover - J.R. Ward

In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there's a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing more than Wrath, the leader of The Black Dagger Brotherhood.

The only purebred vampire left on earth, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But, when one of his most trusted fighters is killed-leaving his half-breed daughter unaware of his existence or her fate-Wrath must usher her into the world of the undead-a world of sensuality beyond her wildest dreams.

 

***2017 Summer Lovin’ Reading List***

Not my cuppa tea. First, a bunch of leather-wearing, loud-rap-music-favouring, foul-mouthed alpha-male vampires. For my buck, vampires must be elegantly dressed and well spoken. These guys were more like a biker gang—without the motorcycles. Fine if you like that kind of thing, but I don’t.

Then the names! Wrath? Rhage? Phury? Zsadist? Can I roll my eyes any louder?

Add to that these are supposedly big, bad men, but as soon as Wrath meets our good-girl Beth, its instant love and he completely changes who he is. Suddenly, he can’t be parted from her and all his boys are worshipping at her feet as well.

The villains were much more interesting. If the next book were about Mr. X, I be much more interested than I am.

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review 2017-08-22 17:40
Brothers in Arms / Lois McMaster Bujold
Brothers in Arms - Lois McMaster Bujold,Grover Gardner

If his enemies would just leave him alone, Miles Vorkosigan (alias Admiral Naismith) decided bitterly, the Dendarii Free Mercenary Fleet would collapse all on its own. But his enemies were plotting a more deadly fall.

For some unexplained reason the Dendarii payroll is missing and the orders from the Barrayaran Imperial Command are being delayed by Miles's superior, Captain Galeni. What connects the impeccable insufferable Captain Galeni and the Komarran rebel expatriates on Earth anyway? But the most deadly question of all before Miles is more personal: are Miles's two identities, Admiral Naismith of the Dendarii and Lieutenant Lord Vorkosigan of Barrayar, splitting apart along the lines of his divided loyalties? And who is trying to assassinate which version of him?

 

As per usual, Miles Vorkosigan creates a stir wherever he goes. After figuratively hitting a wasp nest with a stick and annoying the Cetagandians, he hares off to old Earth to get his crew healthy and his ships fixed. Of course, things go horribly awry and lots of intrigue & adventure follows.

Somehow, for me, even though there are lots of action sequences, these books are more about the relationships. He has to balance his two identities as Lord Vorkosigan and Admiral Naismith, each with their own responsibilities. He has his cousin Ivan to consider, as Ivan is also stationed on Earth. Plus Miles makes friendships & alliances wherever he goes—and they complicate an already intricate life. Finally there’s the question of whether he will ever get a personal life and find someone to love him as Miles, regardless of which identity he’s currently living in.

Plenty of adventure here for those who like such things, and lots of character development for me. Another successful installment in the saga of Miles Vorkosigan.

Book 261 in my Science Fiction and Fantasy Reading Project.

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review 2017-08-21 19:19
Disappointing
The Red Pyramid - Rick Riordan

I was really excited for this series after finishing the first two of the author's works. Having thoroughly enjoyed Mr. Riordan's  Greeks and Roman renditions; I was left feeling disappointed with the first book in his Kane series. Which is a shame because I love Egyptian myths and the overall history surrounding Egypt. I guess I expected the same charm and air that the other two series had. But that is not what I got while reading this book. It was often difficult to connect with the main two characters Carter and Sadie. The latter of whom tended to get on my nerves more often than not. I didn't find her snark quirky and felt often her superior attitude over her brother to be annoying. While she does get better I don't feel it's enough for me to say that I like her all that much. Plus throughout reading this book I felt myself becoming distracted and I wanted to finish it as quickly as possible. I do intend to read the last two remaining books to see if the series improves. That and me and my wife bought the box set thinking we were really going to enjoy it. And so far as for myself I just haven't.

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review 2017-08-19 17:01
So maybe I should have just read the book...
Legal Tender - Andrew Grey

I'm really torn on this one because in all honesty I wanted to really love this story. The blurb sounded so good that I couldn't really imagine not loving the story...and although I didn't love this quite as much as I'd anticipated there was a lot about the story that worked for me and I truly enjoyed.

 

While the story worked for me overall my biggest distraction came from the audio side of things and this is where I'm really torn...you see, I like John Solo. I sort of have a soft spot for him because it was his narration of Marie Sexton's 'Trailer Trash' that made me decide to start listening to and reviewing audio books. However, with this one the narration just didn't work for me and in all honesty I have to say I think this was a little bit me as well, but we'll come back to this later.

 

'Legal Tender' is the fourth book in Andrew Grey's 'Art Series' and while the blurb for the story intrigued me and sounded really good. In the end it turned out to be just 'ok'. Timothy has returned to his Grampy's home after finding out that his grandfather had left everything to him and not his drug addicted mother. Timothy left home at an early age after his mother betrayed him in the worst way possible. He's cut her out of his life and I say good for him on that one. She didn't deserve to be anyone's mother let alone someone as sweet as Timothy.

 

Coming back to Grampy's house has also reunited Timothy with his childhood friend, Dieter (one of the MCs from the first book in this series). Timothy also discovers that his Grampy's stories from his childhood were clues to a heritage that he'd been unaware of. Discovering a cache of old coins brings Timothy to Dieter's door in need of help from Dieter's partner, Gerald and introducing him to Joiner, whom Gerald task with finding out how they can enable Timothy to keep a rare coin that the American Government claims belongs to them as it was never monetized or so they claim.

 

As Joiner works to find a way for Timothy to keep his grandfather's coin the two men get to know each other and their initial attraction to each other becomes more, but the real question is will what they have be enough to keep them together when Timothy finally opens up about why he refuses to have anything to do with his mother. 

 

I loved all the different aspects of this story and how things played out slowly revealing the connections. 

 

Ok now for the audio portion of this review. As I said before I have a bit of a soft spot for John Solo so this pains me a little to say but for me the biggest problem was the audio. Overall the voices just weren't clicking for me. Gerald's voice was stilted and just seemed to have an arrogant tone to it and while I like confident...arrogant just doesn't do it for me and I found myself not liking Gerald a whole lot and then there was Timothy.  I wanted Timothy's voice to reflect my image of a man in his twenties who was sweet and while confident at times held a hint of insecurity especially when confronted with his past. I wanted to hear all the emotion in his voice when he spoke about his grampy, his mother, the things that happened to him as a child. What I felt like I was getting was a pre-pubescent boy. I liked Timothy and his voice just wasn't what I was envisioning it to be. So truthfully this wasn't a right or wrong thing it was just a case of it didn't work for me. However, on the upside Joiner's voice was ok for me, but still the over all narration just didn't work for me. 

 

It's usually at this point that I really know whether or not an audio book truly worked for me because if it worked for me the audio book gets an overall rating but in this case while the book would have gotten 4 stars from me. In all honesty the audio sits somewhere around 2.5 - 3 stars. So I'm calling it a day at 3.5 stars and having faith that my next John Solo audio book will be a better experience.

 

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

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