Archive for November, 2011

Knit One Pearl One-Gil McNeil

November 30, 2011

Knit One Pearl One

Gil McNeil

Voice/HarperCollins, Dec 27 2011, $14.99

ISBN: 9781401341671

 

In Broadgate, England, Jo Mackenzie is the mother of three children (Archie, Jack, and toddler Pearl); all from different fathers.  She runs her Gran’s knitting shop and co-owns a tea café with her friend, Connie.  Her Gran and Connie’s niece Cinzia help her with the kids.  

 

Since Pearl’s father internal photographer Daniel Fitzgerald is gone from her life, she considers recently divorced woodworker Martin “Dovetail” Trent as she likes him.  However Daniel returns to take her and the kids on a vacation.  She must make up her mind and choose one and leave the other behind.

 

The latest Broadgate Beach Street drama (see The Beach Street Knitting Society and Yarn Club, and Needles and Pearls) is an amusing tale starring a single mom running a business while seeking a social life.  Jo remains an engaging supermom and energetic entrepreneur while the support cast enhances the somewhat thin but entertaining story line.  Although there is no growth for Jo or anyone else, fans of the series will enjoy sipping tea and knitting one pearl at a time.

 

Harriet Klausner

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Moonlight in the Morning-Jude Deveraux

November 30, 2011

Moonlight in the Morning

Jude Deveraux

Pocket, Dec 27 2011, $7.99

ISBN: 9781416509745

 

They met when she was nineteen and though he was attracted to her, Dr. Tristan Aldredge felt Jecca Layton was too young for him.  A few years later, he is excited that Jecca will spend the summer painting at her BFF Kim’s house in his hometown of Edilean, Virginia.  She reciprocates his feelings especially in the dark.

 

As the town doctor and the Manhattan art gallery employee fall in love, each knows their career stands in the way of a permanent relationship.  She resides in New Jersey and works in New York where a major opportunity has come her way.  He resides in Virginia as the small town’s physician since his father retired.  Their passion for each other may not be enough to overcome their passion for their respective occupations.

 

The latest Edilean contemporary romance (see Heartwishes and The Scent of Jasmine) is an engaging charming tale between geographically impaired lovers.  The story line is made fresh by the support cast like Kim and Tristan’s parents who bring love and friendship into the story line.  With a surprising final twist, fans will enjoy spending Moonlight in the Morning (and a lot of darkness time) in Edilean.

 

Harriet Klausner

Susanna’s Choice-Sara Luck

November 30, 2011

Susanna’s Choice

Sara Luck

Pocket, Dec 27 2011, $7.99

ISBN: 9781451650426

 

In 1878 business mogul Rab Trudeau arrives from San Francisco in Virginia City, Nevada.  He poses as a Great Western Detective Agency investigator; a firm he owns.  He wants to know who is responsible for illegal silver mine stock dealings as reported by a B.D. Elliot about his Silver Falcon Mine in the Virginia City Pioneer.

 

Rab rescues reporter Susanna Ward Kirkland from a runaway wagon.  They are attracted to one another although he refuses her request for an interview even as accidents seem to be the norm for the newcomer.  As they fall in love while trying to solve the mysteries of the mine and the accidents, Rab’s Nob Hill fiancé Margaret Worthington and Susanna’s future mate Jesse Kirkland the son of the man who rescued her as a child, refuse to give up their intended.

 

This is a superb Americana romance starring a strong cast especially the lead couple in a vivid setting.  The story line focuses on silver fever and the complicated relationship between the affluent businessman with a haunting New Orleans past and the orphan.  Fans will enjoy Sara Luck’s fabulous late nineteenth century tale of avarice, honor and love.

 

Harriet Klausner

The Pleasure of Your Kiss-Teresa Medeiros

November 30, 2011

The Pleasure of Your Kiss

Teresa Medeiros

Pocket, Dec 27 2011, $7.99

ISBN: 9781439157893

 

In 1834, Clarinda Cardew sails from England to marry her fiancé Lord Dravenwood, Max Burke in spite of the fact her future brother-in-law Captain Ashton Burke was her first love who deserted her for a fortune.  However, Corsair pirates attacked her ship and sold her to a sultan in El Jadida.  No ransom has been asked by the sultan.  Max rescues his wastrel brother from certain death for cuckolding a powerful sultan.  In return he asks Ash to rescue his fiancée Clarinda offering an exorbitant reward, the girl who tormented Ash as a child and he loved as a young adult.

 

Ash and his sidekick Luca rescue the sultan Zin al-Farouk from assassins.  He recognizes the sultan as Frankie from his Eton days.  Farouk takes the pair into his palace where his Uncle Tarik shows his disdain for the foreigners.  Upon first sight, Ash knows he still wants Clarinda.  She on the other hand asks her beloved Farouk why he allows rogues in his home. 

 

The Pleasure of Your Kiss is an entertaining nineteenth century historical romance with an offbeat setting as no one will look at cucumbers in the same way.  The story line is fast-paced from the moment Ash realizes who he is to rescue and never slows as the pair fall in love while on a desert adventure.  Although much of the support cast is stereotyped and readers will know who the enemy is, fans will appreciate Teresa Medeiros’ sensational second chance romance.

 

Harriet Klausner

Warrior’s Redemption-Melissa Mayhue

November 30, 2011

Warrior’s Redemption

Melissa Mayhue

Pocket, Dec 27 2011, $7.99

ISBN: 9781451640878

 

In the Land of the Faerie in 1294 human time, Elesyria is hysterical when she learns her only daughter Isabella vanished in the World of Man.  The Earth Mother tells her that her offspring lives with her SoulMate but not in the time and place Elesyria left her.  Heeding the advice of the Goddess she crosses into the World of Man seeking the Tinklers to find out who aided her child.

 

Clan MacGahan Laird Malcolm MacDowylt feels doomed as the old gods of Asgard must constantly test his mettle.  His spouse Isabella is dead and his sister Christiana is held captive by their half-brother Torquil who demands homage and silver from Clan MacGahan.  Finally to drive him crazy the old gods send him the untamable shrew Elesyria.

 

Orphaned very young, Danielle Dearmon of Texas believes fairies are real.  Her belief proves correct when she is sent back the Earth Mother seven centuries to Castle MacGahan.  She thinks her host the laird is her one true love while he feels guilty how much he wants the opinionated newcomer.  Dani’s magic enables Malcolm to survive the ordeal of his odious sibling while her love emboldens him to take the fight to the enemy as he begins to understand Christiana’s destiny.

 

The latest Melissa Mayhue’s marvelous magical mayhem (see Highlander’s Curse) is a superb time travel fantasy romance starring a twenty-first century Texan and a besieged thirteenth century Highlander-Viking.  The fresh story line is fast-paced as Malcolm in the middle as the victim of two kick butt tongue lashers that make his abusive evil half-brother seem like a non in comparison.  Readers will enjoy this otherworld medieval thriller.

 

Harriet Klausner

Heir of Danger-Alix Rickloff

November 30, 2011

Heir of Danger

Alix Rickloff

Pocket, Dec 27 2011, $7.99

ISBN: 9781439170380

 

Following the murder of his father seven years ago, Brendan Douglas fled Ireland and remained on the run.  He left behind Elizabeth Fitzgerald at the altar to flee assassins while unable to leave behind the horror that haunts his every moment.

 

Finally, Brendan knows he ran out of time as he must prevent Maelodor the malevolent mage from raising King Arthur from the grave and destroying the world.  To do so means retrieving the stone he left behind with his beloved Elizabeth who Brendan believes loathes him;  she insists she does detest the dis-honorable one.  He arrives in Dun Eyre, Ireland as his Lissie is set to marry Gordon Shaw.  To keep her safe, Brendan abducts Lissie though the risk is that she will be in the midst of the fight, but he also needs her when he challenges the evil one.

 

The third Heirs of Kilronan Regency romantic fantasy (see the Earl of Darkness and the Lord of Shadows) is a terrific tale in which readers will believe they have been transported to 186 Ireland where mortals and Fey reside.  The lead couple is a wonderful second chance at love tale; that is if they survive.  Fans will appreciate the dark, fervid and deadly Rickloff mythos as the latest Douglas sibling and soul mate battle against impossible odds.

 

Harriet Klausner

The Ata Bita Pie Cafe: Advice is Free-Bonnie Drury

November 29, 2011

The Ata Bita Pie Cafe: Advice is Free

Bonnie Drury

CreateSpace, Oct 16 2011, $9.99

ISBN: 9781463517359

 

After divorcing her controlling cheating spouse Blake the flake, Casey left Seattle and their beloved high school senior son Wyatt to run the Ata Bita Pie Café in her hometown of Hannigan’s Cove near Sacramento.  Her internationally famous brother Jake the photographer returns home because he wants a second chance with Widow Nora who he deserted years ago.  Nora considers insemination of her kind late husband Ethan’s sperm; but wants nothing to do with Jake who hurt her.  Ralph loves his wife Gloria, a waitress at the café; but though she cares for him she misses her wanderlust road days.  Zack has loved Casey for years and hopes for a first time around, as he comes home from Alaska to be with his twelve year old daughter Kayla and his very ill former wife Mary.  Elderly Miss Birdie the pie lady has a secret she has been warned not to share with anyone while seventeen year old Echo is an abuse victim of her uncle when he gets intoxicated.  Advice is free at the café, but anyone who stops learns there is a cost when loving caring relationships form.

 

This is a warm tender relationship drama starring a strong ensemble cast with the interconnecting hubs being Casey, Nora and to a lesser degree Gloria.  The character driven story line engages the readers as the audience follows the highs and lows of each player.  Although the next generation (Wyatt, Echo, Kayla and later on Emma) are too precocious, fans will enjoy the lives of the sandwich generation as they form deep second chance at love bonds while caring for one another and the seniors and youngsters they cherish.

 

Harriet Klausner

The Other Guy’s Bride-Connie Brockway

November 29, 2011

The Other Guy’s Bride

Connie Brockway

Montlake Romance, Dec 22 2011, $14.99

ISBN: 9781612181448

 

In 1897 Lady Althea lies about her grandson and heir driving away Charlotte who she thinks is not good enough to one day replace her.  Her angry grandson leaves England, becomes Jim Owen and joins the Foreign Legion while his grandmother grooms his younger brother to become the duke.  Jim fears he will soon be dead at the hands of Mahdists so he vows to never act stupid again due to a woman.

 

In 1905, Egyptologist student Genisse Braxton quits her job as a researcher to Professor Tyneborough when he rejected her belief she found a clue to the location of the lost city of Zerzura.  Mildred Whimpelhall becomes seasick on her journey to meet her fiancé, Colonel Lord Pomfrey, Commander of Fort Gordon in the Sahara near Genisse’s destination.  Mildred leaves the ship to take a train while Genisse in Cairo becomes Miss Whimpelhall to obtain a guide.  Her escort to her “fiancé” is Jim who owes Pomfrey a favor for saving his life in 1897.  “Mildred” leaves with Jim who flees Cairo after a fight with the dangerous LeBoeuf.  While “Mildred” lands into one perilous situation after another, in Cairo two groups follow the pair with different agendas

 

This is a great Edwardian era romantic adventure starring a brave woman who seems to be a trouble magnet and a confused man caught in the dilemma of how does a “ghost” deal with falling in love with The Other Guy’s Bride.  Fast-paced and loaded with action this outstanding tale also contains delightful light humor enhancing the insightful look at living one’s life to fulfill your desires or your perception of your family’s. Readers will envision Hepburn-Grant teaming up in Connie Brockway’s fabulous historical.

 

Harriet Klausner

Some Like It Hot-Louisa Edwards

November 29, 2011

Some Like It Hot

Louisa Edwards

St. Martin’s, Nov 29 2011, $7.99

ISBN: 9780312534394

 

New Yorker Danny Lunden joins his family and his team as they compete in Chicago in the Rising Star Chef Competition to be shown on the Cooking Channel.  Eva Jansen replaces her father as the director of the competition.  Both have in common a deep need not to let down their loved ones.

 

They meet and are instantly attracted to one another.  Danny finds her fascinating with her take charge vulnerability but also thinks she is a spoiled rich brat; Eva finds him kind especially since he seems to ignore her affluence, but also thinks he is a know it all New Yorker.  However, her father scrutinizes her every move so they agree to do nothing personal.  As her dad wants the melodramatic embarrassments like food fights and affairs aired, Eva wonders if ratings are all that matter.

 

This is an engaging culinary romance starring two heated opposites in love.  In some ways the kitchen combat and trysts supersedes the romantic subplot.  Still sub-genre fans will enjoy the second Lunden Rising Star Chef tale (see Too Hot to Touch) as Danny and Eva fall in love amidst food fights and family drama.

 

Harriet Klausner

All Fall Down-Megan Hart

November 23, 2011

All Fall Down

Megan Hart

Mira, Dec 27 2011, $14.95

ISBN: 9780778313069

 

Sunshine’s Mama sends her nineteen years old daughter and her three grandchildren (Peace, Bliss and Happy) away from the Family of Superior Bliss compound.  Mama tells Sunny to go to her real biological father, as the teen learns John Superior is not. 

 

Sunny and her three preschoolers arrive at the home of Christopher Albright.  He wants nothing to do with a daughter or his grandchildren who he never knew he had; but his wife Liesel welcomes the foursome into their home.  Already in shock with the revelations, Sunny is despondent to learn everyone at the Family of Superior Bliss compound including Mama committed suicide.

 

This is an engaging look at a cult from the perspective of someone who escaped but quickly realizes she will never fully escape mentally.  Character driven, readers will root for this “family” to make it but Sunny’s adjustment issues are overwhelming having spent almost two decades with a truth that proved false.  Although a deeper look at the thought processes of Sunny, her oldest four years old child, and her father would have been enlightening, fans will relish this family drama.

 

Harriet Klausner