Archive for October, 2008

Bedding Down-Kristina Wright, Gwen Masters, Alison Tyler, Marilyn Jaye Lewis, Isabelle Gray, Sophie Mouette and Shanna Germain

October 31, 2008

Bedding Down

Kristina Wright, Gwen Masters, Alison Tyler, Marilyn Jaye Lewis, Isabelle Gray, Sophie Mouette and Shanna Germain

Avon, Dec 2008, $13.95

ISBN: 9780061560637

 

“One Night in Winter” by Kristina Wright.  Susannah returns home to Minerva where her former lover Derrick reignites their heat.

 

“Six Weeks at Sunrise Mountain, Colorado” by Gwen Masters.  Stressed to the max, burned-out millionaire Fletcher flees for Sunrise Mountain to escape; there he rescues a frozen bruised Janine who in turn rescues his libido and heart.

 

“It’s Not the Weather” by Alison Tyler.  Shelly assumes it is her fault that her boyfriend Roger is cold regardless of what she tries; so she gives up on him only to find warmth and passion with Jeremiah.

 

“Baby, It’s Cold Outside” by Marilyn Jaye Lewis.  Married couple Kaylie and Connor becomes snowbound, which gives them time to reenact some of their hottest moments.

 

“Northern Exposure” by Isabelle Gray.  Their marriage is over yet neither Alana nor Gideon can move on as each wonders if they should give it one more try.

 

“Hidden Treasure” by Sophie Mouette.  Brenda and Sean discover a treasure, but will they understand what the real treasure is.

 

 “Sweet Season,” by Shanna Germain.  After being away for awhile, Dulcie returns to her family’s maple syrup business only to find Travis is the real sweetener.

 

Although the plots are paper thin, the lead couples are developed enough to emit plenty of heat for fans to appreciate this wintry erotic septet.

 

Harriet Klausner


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A Baby in the Bunkhouse-Cathy Gillen Thacker

October 31, 2008

A Baby in the Bunkhouse

Cathy Gillen Thacker

Harlequin American, Dec 2008

ISBN: 0373752415

 

On his Texas Hill Country ranch, Rafferty Evans behaves like the Grinch who stole Christmas year round; he is a grump if you ask the other cowboys living there.  His new cook pregnant Jacey Lambert is driving him crazy with her kindness and caring for everyone even saying nice things to the grouch who makes Oscar look angelic.

 

However, Rafferty cannot prevent himself from looking forward to Jacey’s good cheer and to his shock he even likes A BABY INN THE BUNKHOUSE even if the infant is not his.  As Jacey begins to turn around the crotchety cantankerous cowboy, they begin to fall in love, but to have a happy ending she must persuade him to move past his tormented past into a loving future.

 

This entertaining Texas ranch romance stars a crank, a baby, and an angel.  Jacey’s optimism is contagious as she sees the glass as half filled while Rafferty would spill out the liquid and claim it is totally empty.  Although similar to many sub-genre tales fans will enjoy this fine contemporary as Jacey keeps filling up the glass refusing to quit each time Rafferty empties it.

 

Harriet Klausner


Once Upon a Christmas-Holly Jacobs

October 31, 2008

Once Upon a Christmas

Holly Jacobs

Harlequin American, Dec 2008

ISBN: 0373752423

 

In Erie, Pennsylvania, although only the legal guardian to her nephew Brendan, Michelle Hamilton acts more like the child’s mother and has for five years ever since her sister, his mom, dropped him off explaining she was dying.  She loves the lad and would do anything for him; even join the Erie Elementary PTA Social Committee; of course she volunteered when she was too sick to realize what she was doing.

 

However, when Brendan becomes determined to find his biological father, Michelle is hurt and worried as she fears if the child succeeds, the man will wants custody.  Brendan meets his dad Daniel McLean and to her shock Michelle sees he is a terrific male role model.  Even more stunning to the “single mom” is the realization she is falling in love with her nephew’s dad after spending several years hiding behind the mommy persona.

 

Holly Jacobs keeps this engaging Erie Elementary PTA (see ONCE UPON A THANKSGIVING) contemporary romance fresh through three strong protagonists coming together as a family who supersede the often used plot of finding a biological parent.  The story line is driven by the changing relationships especially between the adults as each starts off wary and cynical but slowly observe how good the other is with Brendan before knowing they are in love.  The fully developed triangle and the support cast make for a fine ONCE UPON A CHRISTMAS tale.

 

Harriet Klausner

Maximum Exposure-Alison Kent

October 30, 2008

Maximum Exposure

Alison Kent

Kensington Brava, Dec 2008, $14.00

ISBN: 9780758217561

 

In the South Beach section of Miami Beach, Key Largo based private investigator Finn McLain is taken aback when a total but lovely in a “Latina hot” way stranger comes up to him to ask a favor.  Olivia Hammond wants Finn to photograph her for an erotic exhibit.  Finn quickly changes his plans from a quick stay in Miami seeking information for a client watching out for Jodi Fontaine a Splash & Flambé boutique manager that is manager of the Flambé half. Roland Green, a shady character, .is the Flambe part.

 

Olivia owns the boutique and Finn would not mind her owning a piece of him.  However, using his upper head in spite of his lower rampaging like a teen, Finn believes Olivia is hiding something from him and so is Roland.  He plans to explore every inch of her through his camera’s lens and through his touch; his goal is more than getting inside her as he wants to get inside her soul.  As they begin to fall in love, Finn’s investigation of Roland becomes dangerous for him and his beloved as they inadvertently get involved in Operation Bebe Bust.

 

The four prime characters make for an entertaining South Florida investigative romance with some late suspense enhancing the relationships.  Each of the key quartet members, especially Olivia and Finn, are fully developed in and out of bed.  Fans will relish this sunny romantic suspense while ironically knowing early on whether Roland is a rat; something the others will learn the hard way.

 

Harriet Klausner


Divorced, Desperate and Dating-Christie Craig

October 30, 2008

Divorced, Desperate and Dating

Christie Craig

Love Spell, Dec 2008, $6.99

ISBN: 9780505527325

 

The kiss was everything but proved to be nothing.  Houston Detective Jason Dodd kissed writer Sue Finley leaving her wanting more from him and wasted for anyone else.  Thus when he fails to follow up, Sue is heartbroken calling him a jerk for never calling her and plotting murder with poison.

 

Jason grew up as a foster child so does not trust relationships even if his heart pleads with him to take a chance on Sue.  He feels safer to keep his distance.  However, when he learns someone is stalking Sue, he can no longer run from his feelings.  Still in spite of protecting her Jason keeps his heart hidden even as Sue wants to know why because she can see by his looks he wants her too.

 

This is an entertaining character driven romantic suspense sequel to DIVORCED, DESPERATE AND DELICIOUS.  The stalking subplot serves as a matchmaker of sorts as Sue does not hide her desire from Jason whom obviously wants her too, but flees even when next to her somewhere inside his mind.  Jason makes the tale with his fear that relationships end rapidly and poorly so as a psychological defense mechanism he avoids them as if they are the plague.  Fans will enjoy Christie Craig’s charming lighthearted frolic as the author refuses to accept no thanks even if their relationship proves to be a bridge to nowhere.

 

Harriet Klausner

Tall, Dark, and Kilted-Allie Mackay

October 30, 2008

Tall, Dark, and Kilted

Allie Mackay

Signet, Nov 2008

ISBN: 978045122551

 

After her lover dumped her for an odious but wealthy replacement and her rival killed her jewelry business, Cilla Swanner left Yardley, Pennsylvania to spend the summer with her Uncle Mac and Aunt Birdie at their Scottish retirement home Dunroamin Castle.  Cilla does not miss her ex even an iota and in fact feels relived, but she is worried that her family will lose the castle.

 

Hundreds of years ago, Scottish knight Sir Hardwin de Studely is hosting some important VIPs when a travel bard asked for hospitality.  Fearing for the lives of his guests, he refused.  The bard being a wizard cursed Hardwick as he is called by friends to suffer a different lover for eternity.  Over the centuries, he has become disillusioned, but the Dark One gives him a chance for redemption if he avoids arousal for a year; if he fails he will please the darkest females.  The problem for the now chaste Hardwick is his attraction to Cilla; who makes matters worse as she is falling in love with the ghost haunting her uncle’s castle.

 

TALL, DARK, AND KILTED is an engaging urban romantic fantasy with a touch of a mystery and a terific twist in which Hardwick fled to the remote retirement home to avoid young women only to fall in love with the Sword of Damocles hanging over both his heads.  The story line is brisk and breezy from the moment the ghost and the American meet and never slows down.  With a strong cast, paranormal and human, fans will enjoy Cilla’s Scottish adventure in love.

 

Harriet Klausner

Running Hot-Jayne Ann Krentz

October 29, 2008

Running Hot

Jayne Ann Krentz

Putnam, Jan 2009, $24.95

ISBN 9780399155215

 

The psychic investigative firm Jones & Jones sends Arcane Society member Grace Renquist, who can envision the evil in a person’s aura to Hawaii to uncover the identity of a serial killer.  To protect the librarian who will be out in the cold for the first time, they hire former cop currently tending bar Luther Malone as her bodyguard, who can abort a person’s evil thoughts before they can perform an odious deed.

 

Luther and Grace are attracted to one another from their first meeting.  However, in Hawaii they know to table their passion and focus on the killer.  They quickly learn that others seek the psychopath too; from the drug stimulated malevolent Nightshades to psychic hunter opera diva La Sirene, whose voice kills.

 

Although obviously over the top of Mauna Kea, RUNNING HOT is a fast-paced exhilarating romantic suspense that grips the audience from the moment the lead couple meets and never takes a breather until the concluding implication that sequels will follow.  Ms. Krentz’s fans will enjoy this serial murder mystery investigation that turns into much more dangerous and evil than a psychopath on the loose.

 

Harriet Klausner

 

Alluring Tales-Cathryn Fox, Delilah Devlin, Lisa Renee Jones, Myla Jackson, Sasha White, Sylvia Day and Vivi Anna

October 28, 2008

Alluring Tales

Cathryn Fox, Delilah Devlin, Lisa Renee Jones, Myla Jackson, Sasha White, Sylvia Day  and Vivi Anna

Avon, Nov 2008, $13.95

ISBN: 9780061463174

 

“Peaches and Cream” by Cathryn Fox.  Jennifer is a bartender at Risque pretending to be Peaches the exotic dancer when she meets Jack the research scientist in order to explore her fantasies.

 

“Indecent Exposure” by Delilah Devlin.  Harmony returns home to seduce Sheriff Dalton; her fantasy since high school.

 

“Forbidden Fruit” by Lisa Renee Jones.  Ryan has always been hard whenever he saw his best friend’s sister Kelli who has always been wet and hot when she saw him; now she plans to take him her style.

 

“Billboard Babe” by Myla Jackson.  Prim and proper Angie starts an erotic ad campaign to win a sexual evening or three with co-worker Daniel.

 

“Wish Upon a Star” by Sasha White.  Professional dominatrix Miss Sarah wishes upon a star for someone to truly love; Nealon bikes in from out of this world.

 

“That Old Black Magic” by Sylvia Day.  Warlock Max is despondent with grief when his beloved mate Victoria apparently died and he tries all sorts of magic to bring her back to him; however he begins to obsess instead over the feline-female familiar who recently entered his life.

 

“Silver Waters” by Vivi Anna.  On the run, Sangria and Vance take a heated break in the Caribbean.

 

These seven fun erotic tales are mostly spice with a sprinkle in spite of being very short for any happenings beyond the sexual encounters that run the gamut from ménage a trois, S&M bondage, and anal.

 

Harriet Klausner

To Sin with a Stranger-Kathryn Caskie

October 28, 2008

To Sin with a Stranger

Kathryn Caskie

Avon, Dec 2008, $6.99

ISBN: 9780061491009

 

Their father disgusted with their scandals that has earned them the reputation as the “Seven Deadly Sins” has exiled his offspring and warned them if they do not shape up they will inherit nothing beyond what the law allows.  None of the unholy seven Sinclair children take him seriously as he has threatened them before, but they do feel the loss of income since he has cut off the purse.

 

His heir Sterling keeps himself and his brothers and sisters at a reasonable level of respectability and less significant from starving by prizefighting at Gentleman Jackson’s London gym.  Miss Isobel Carrington enters the establishment to ask the wealthy male patrons to donate to her charity.  Isobel is attracted to Sterling, but rejects him as being too avaricious to care one iota about the less fortunate.  At White’s betting ignites that Sterling who is pursuing her will marry her.  She reconsiders her opinion of his being a greedy aristocrat when she realizes he is boxing to support his siblings, but still fears letting her heart go to a man who placed a bet on him winning her.

 

The gender battle between Isobel and Sterling is an entertaining Regency romance as each is intelligent, knows whet they want, and what they will do to achieve their desires.  Although Sterling’s sin is greed, his willingness to take hits for his siblings proves otherwise and has Isobel reconsidering his worth.  Fans will enjoy this lighthearted historical while looking forward to more tales starring other Seven Deadly Sins’ siblings.

 

Harriet Klausner

Never Dare a Duke-Gayle Callen

October 28, 2008

Never Dare a Duke

Gayle Callen

Avon, Dec 2008, $6.99

ISBN: 9780061235061

 

Abigail Shaw realistically looks at her father’s failing newspaper and knows only one thing can save the family’s journalistic enterprise, a meaty scandal.  Titillating sensationalism sells papers as the Ton loves to read about a scandal hammering at a peer.  She selects the cleanest reputation she knows of because if she can find dirt on Lord Christopher Cabot, the sales will be through the roof.

 

Going undercover Abigail obtains an invitation to a party hosted by her targeted duke in which he plans to select one of the attendees as his bride.  However, Christopher is attracted to Abigail, who to her chagrin, reciprocates.  She offers to help him find his spouse by them pretending a dalliance.  The only problems are it is not pretending and the scandal she has uncovered on Christopher has her included in the crosshairs.

 

This is a fun lighthearted historical romance starring two interesting individuals especially the undercover investigative reporter.  Using Rovian logic to go after the strengths of your opponent, Abby picks Christopher, which leads to a series of amusing encounters and love as the heroine learns to NEVER DARE A DUKE; they will accept the challenge and double dare you back.

 

Harriet Klausner