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review 2018-10-16 00:28
My review of How the Dukes Stole Christmas by Tessa Dare, Sarah MacLean, Sophie Jordan & Joanna Shupe
How the Dukes Stole Christmas: A Holiday Romance Anthology - Sophie Jordan,Sarah MacLean,Tessa Dare,Joanna Shupe

How the Dukes Stole Christmas: A Holiday Romance Anthology - Sarah MacLean,Tessa Dare,Joanna Shupe,sophie jordan 

 

For starters, DUKES! I don’t care how many make-believe dukes have been created, I’ll read them for as long as they keep writing them. Secondly, Christmas! I’ll admit that I prefer to read dark, scary, paranormal stories during the month of October, but c’mon, who can say no to Christmas stories, specially when they are written by some of your favorite authors and they all come together in one pretty package!
And that actually brings me to say that thirdly, it’s freaking Tessa Dare, Sarah MacLean, Sophie Jordan, and Joanna Shupe, what?! If you haven’t read books by them then let me tell you, you are missing out on some serious awesomeness. And in case you haven’t noticed, I’m a super fan of all of these ladies so forgive me if I gush too much.

 

Tessa Dare’s Meet Me in Mayfair was clever, funny, and oh, so romantic. It probably is one of the most charming and memorable “date” nights I have ever read.

Sarah MacLean’s The Duke of Christmas Present is a second-chance love story. There were some serious tug-at-your-heart scenes, specially when the heroine returns “home.” It was kind of hard for me to understand the reasoning behind both the hero and heroine’s actions but once I got to the end, everything made complete sense.

 

Sophie Jordan’s Heiress Alone was another great example of how chemistry between hero and heroine affects a story, even if it’s a short one and even if the romance happens rather quickly.

 

Joanna Shupe’s Christmas in Central Park had me worrying and suffering along with the poor heroine, and had me wanting to slap the hero upside the head for acting like a spoiled brat that just had to have his way. Their love story may had been full of funny and cringe-worthy moments but the way their forgive and reach their HEA made it all worth it.

 

In short, four different settings, four different kinds of delicious dukes, four great Christmas stories, and one happy reader that recommends this set to all historical romance lovers. Even if Christmas is not your cup of tea, the romance alone make this a perfect read. 4.5 stars.

 

*I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher**

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review 2018-09-19 02:16
Mrs. Brodie's Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies by Shana Galen & Theresa Romain
Mrs. Brodie's Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies - Shana Galen,Theresa Romain

Mrs. Brodie's Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies - Shana Galen,Theresa Romain 

 

I'd describe this duo as one of those that give you an AWWWW! feeling and that feeling stays with you long after you put the book down. Both stories are about second chances. 

The Way to A Gentleman's Heart by Theresa Romain stars Marianne, a lady of society-turned cook, and James, a man with plenty to regret but willing to make amends and hoping for forgiveness. I always find this author’s stories kind of hard to understand in the sense that I don’t connect with the characters right away. At first I thought James had hurt Marianne too much and grueling for the rest of his life wouldn’t be enough to deserve forgiveness, however once Marianne’s musing put their relationship in a different light and she realized he was a worthy man I too realized just as much. 

Counterfeit Scandal by Shana Galen intertwines characters from No Earls Allowed, book 2 in her The Survivors series but you don’t need to read that book first in order to read this one. Bridget and Caleb were forced to part ways at a moment when Bridget needed him the most. Fast forward several years later and Caleb seems to be the only one to help her find what she once lost but loves the most. I liked this story a lot. The author was able to pack plenty of character development, emotions, action, and redemption in only a few pages. The fact that Caleb was willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for Bridget was kind of the cherry on top. 

I think this set perfectly represents what each author is about so if anyone's thought about trying something by either one I encourage you to give these novellas a go. 

I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.

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review 2018-07-17 22:41
Lord of Secrets (Rogues to Riches #5) by Erica Ridley
Lord of Secrets - Erica Ridley

Lord of Secrets - Erica Ridley 

Lord of Secrets - Erica Ridley 

~3.5 stars ~

As an heir to a barony, Heath knows he must choose the right woman to marry. She’ll have to be a proper lady of a good family, and will never, ever give motive for scandal or gossip. So what if he’s not in love with the lady, right?

Heath in a way reminded of Mr. Darcy although not as brooding or surly. Honor bound to a fault, his first priority was always his family and his duty to the title. As the problem-solver of the ton, he considered his responsibility to keep his peers out of the gossip columns and pursue those that dared taint their “good” name. This attitude of him grated me because how could anyone be so honorable yet try to cover up other people’s mistakes. To me that was hypocritical. Fortunately, love outweighed any preconceived notions of honor and he found his true calling.
Nora had a secret of her own that if uncovered it could not only ruin her but also ruin her chances at love. I thought she was sweet, smart, and witty however I could totally see why she didn’t think highly of herself. It made me a happy reader when Heath saw past all of her shortcomings and focused on what mattered most. Their romance was engaging and slow-burning with the right amount of tension which made it feel believable.

Although there weren’t any tug-at-your-heart moments it was definitely enjoyable and a good continuation to the series. I recommend this series to anyone that likes endearing yet complex characters, funny moments, and good romance. 

Thanks to Negalley for providing a copy of this story for review.

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review 2018-05-30 02:56
THE PRINCE (Devil's Duke #4) by Katharine Ashe
The Prince (Devil's Duke) - Katharine Ashe

Generally speaking, I usually pass on books where a woman disguises herself as a man in order to achieve her goals because most of the time they are so fantastically far-fetched that I end up with headaches from rolling my eyes in disbelief so much. Not here, not with Libby. She was such a unique woman to begin with that pretending to be anything but a woman of the ton wasn’t hard to believe. She was both endearing and sensual and her oddities make her a refreshing, different character, setting her apart from other bluestockings. As a matter of fact, Libby is on a whole other level of heroine archetype all by herself. 
Ziyaeddin became captivated by Elizabeth when they first met so when she asked for his help he knew there would be trouble ahead. In spite of their obvious attraction, he tries to keep their relationship as distant as possible, not only because he knows his future is yet to be determined but because he knows of her dreams and doesn’t want to be in the way of them (if that’s not sexy I don’t know what is.) All that sexual tension was just as frustrating for the characters as it was for me as a reader! Yet what I loved the most about his character was that his always cool demeanor was able to reel Libby’s mind back in from the chaos it sometimes was proving once more that a man doesn’t have to be dominant or possessive to be the perfect hero. 

Secondary characters were a true delight. They all added that perfect touch of variety to keep the story moving, and the fact that both Libby and Ziyaeddin had overcome many of their initial fears made the story even more memorable. And that epilogue! I don’t think I’ve ever read one full of so many emotions and feelings. With a heart-melting, enthralling storyline; complex and larger-than-life characters; and the perfect history backdrop this book is for sure an instant re-read. 

 

**I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.**

 

The Prince (Devil's Duke) - Katharine Ashe 

 

Get your copy here: 
Amazon https://amzn.to/2ryyvRM 
B&N http://bit.ly/2vJMgSS
iBooks http://apple.co/2wDmPkF
Indiebound http://bit.ly/2E7r9d4
Kobo http://bit.ly/2wF2tpr
More www.katharineashe.com/The-Prince

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review 2018-05-15 20:53
Stealing the Duke's Heart by Shana Galen
Stealing the Duke's Heart - Shana Galen

Stealing the Duke's Heart - Shana Galen 

 

**These novellas were previously published in the anthologies The Dukes of Vauxhall and How to Find a Duke in Ten Days.**

 

How to Steal a Duke 
Dominik and Rosalyn make one of my favorite couples ever. She was graceful, playful, and brave. He was haughty, proper, and much to his chagrin, caring. Together they are the perfect pair. With a hint at gothic, and although it’s only a novella, this story packs plenty: romance, nail-biting situations, and an unexpected twist. It was a nice story that I wish would have been longer! 

Taken by the Duke 
When Henry is attacked by a band of ruffians, the last thing he expected was to come reacquainted with a long lost love. Kate has changed so much since he last saw her however he knows that deep inside she’s still the same girl he knew all those years ago. There were sparks flying for these two from the start. I loved that it’s not your typical “duke” and there was “no damsel in distress.” I thought the ending was kind of abrupt but it was still an enjoyable read. 

Both stories were fun, enjoyable, and quick reads. If you’re looking for a read to pass your morning, this is the one to get. 

~ I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher. ~

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