Archive for December, 2011

A Seductive Kiss-Francis Ray

December 30, 2011

A Seductive Kiss

Francis Ray

St. Martin’s, Jan 31 2012, $7.99

ISBN: 9780312536473

 

Famous model Dianne Harrington is the “Face” of her family’s House of Harrington fashion firm.  Renowned for her beautiful face, lonely Dianne has low self-esteem fostered by her belief that her parents do not love her; they only used her to accomplish their ambitious goals.

 

Attorney Alex Stewart has always been there for Dianne since they were children.  He loves her, but is cautious about pursuing her as he fears she will flee and end their friendship.  Dianne has always been attracted to her brother’s best friend, but fears making a move would drive away one of her few buddies.  When Dianne is fired, she must take charge of herself, especially where she wants to go with her life.  Alex vows to be there to help his beloved.

 

The latest Grayson Family Friends tale is a warm coming of age contemporary romance between Dr. Catherine Stewart-Grayson’s (see Until There Was You) brother and his childhood buddy.  Alex is a typical Francis Ray hunk, who cares about others as he has always been there for his Dianne.  While the heroine brings freshness to the strong storyline with her deep rooted belief that if was not for her face she would be worthless.  Readers will relish this entry as Dianne’s self-assessment has kept her champion in her life with gentle hugs, but also kept them apart.

 

Harriet Klausner

Home Front-Kristin Hannah

December 30, 2011

Home Front

Kristin Hannah

St. Martin’s, Jan 31 2012, $27.99

ISBN: 9780312577209

 

Michael and Joleen Zarkades have been married for a dozen years.  They have two small children who round what seems to be a perfect family.  However, the two adults are discontented with their relationship and considering a divorce.

 

Jo jointed the National Guard before she married Michael.  Her unit is activated and depleted to Iraq.  Their separation widens the fractures of their marriage.  As Michael worries about his side’s safety while he remains on the Home Front caring for their kids, Jo looks back at her crumbling marriage trying to understand why as she knows she still lives her civilian spouse.

 

This is an excellent profound look at the impact of deployments on a marriage and a family.  Michael and Jo have drifted apart and her mobilization provides a duality of reactions as her going overseas to the Iraqi theater of operation further widens their relational gap at the same worrying about her safety and the effect on the kids.  Home front is a compassionate poignant character driven tale that reminds readers who truly sacrificed for the nation.

 

Harriet Klausner

Darkest Highlander-Donna Grant

December 30, 2011

Darkest Highlander

Donna Grant

St. Martin’s, Jan 31 2012, $7.99

ISBN: 9780312533496

 

The Druids created Broc the warrior who has dedicated his heart to protecting his beloved Druidess Sonya’ though he hides how he feels as he knows they can never be together.  Thus Broc is stunned when the woman he loves flees Castle MacLeod.

 

He follows her only to catch up to her nearly dead.  As Sonya heals, she explains to Broc that she no longer can perform magic.  Broc is confused as he can feel she still has the power.  When Deirdre’s evil forces capture Broc, Sonya knows she must rescue the man she loves.  He is chained to evil magic with no hope for escape for eternity.  She helps Broc escape; with both of them ending up in an ancient tomb where they dig up an artifact hoping to prevent Deirdre from using it.

 

The latest Dark Sword historical romantic fantasy (see Shadow Highlander, Untamed Highlander, Dangerous Highlander and Wicked Highlander) is a great tale that deftly merges early seventeenth century Highlander lifestyle within the Grant Druid mythos. The lead protagonists propel the fast-paced The storyline as readers will wonder love can overcome malicious amoral malevolence.

 

Harriet Klausner

How To Dance With A Duke-Manda Collins

December 30, 2011

How To Dance With A Duke

Manda Collins

St. Martin’s, Jan 31 2012, $7.99

ISBN: 9780312549244

 

Miss Cecily Hurston desperately needs admission to the Egyptian Club that her father belongs to.  She knows the only way a female can join is as the wife of a member.  Although she likes digs better than balls Cecily prefers to remain single but has no choice since her father scandalously has been accused of killing a member on an expedition; to prove his innocence means joining the Egyptian Club, which denotes marrying some boring elderly academic in order to uncover the identity of the real killer.

 

War hero Duke of Winterson, Lucas Dalton, also wants to know what happened to his brother who never returned from Hurston’s last dig.  He agrees to help her obtain a suitable husband so she can gain access to the club enabling them to investigate from the inside.  As they fall in love, neither Lucas nor Cecily are prepared to what the danger they dig up.

 

This is an entertaining historical romantic mystery starring a heroic wallflower; who uses her brains and guts to figure out How To Dance With A Duke.  The storyline is fast-paced from the onset and never slows down as outstanding lead couple teams up in love to investigate what happened to his sibling on that fatal expedition.

 

Harriet Klausner

How To Dance With A Duke-Manda Collins

December 30, 2011

How To Dance With A Duke

Manda Collins

St. Martin’s, Jan 31 2012, $7.99

ISBN: 9780312549244

 

Miss Cecily Hurston desperately needs admission to the Egyptian Club that her father belongs to.  She knows the only way a female can join is as the wife of a member.  Although she likes digs better than balls Cecily prefers to remain single but has no choice since her father scandalously has been accused of killing a member on an expedition; to prove his innocence means joining the Egyptian Club, which denotes marrying some boring elderly academic in order to uncover the identity of the real killer.

 

War hero Duke of Winterson, Lucas Dalton, also wants to know what happened to his brother who never returned from Hurston’s last dig.  He agrees to help her obtain a suitable husband so she can gain access to the club enabling them to investigate from the inside.  As they fall in love, neither Lucas nor Cecily are prepared to what the danger they dig up.

 

This is an entertaining historical romantic mystery starring a heroic wallflower; who uses her brains and guts to figure out How To Dance With A Duke.  The storyline is fast-paced from the onset and never slows down as outstanding lead couple teams up in love to investigate what happened to his sibling on that fatal expedition.

 

Harriet Klausner

His Duty To Protect-Lindsay McKenna

December 28, 2011

His Duty To Protect

Lindsay McKenna

Harlequin Romantic Suspense, Jan 24 2012, $5.25

ISBN: 9780373277612

 

Five years ago at the Apache flight school Army instructor Captain Tyler Hamilton led his sexist attitude get in the way of training Rachel Trayhern.  He tried to fail her, but the determined woman refused to quit.  Looking back, he regrets his behavior towards one of his better students, but is not totally cognizant that his bias comes from his childhood.

 

In Afghanistan, Rachel is assigned to Tyler’s unit.  He owes her an apology, but she keeps everything strictly by the book and in the present.  However, a mission turns potentially fatal as Tyler and Rachel are isolated from their team inside of the fluid enemy territory.  To survive their harrowing trek they must trust and rely on one another.

 

This is a superb military romance with much of the focus on theatre operations starting with the Taliban grenade attack leaving the heroine mentally disoriented (and enabling flashbacks).  The story line is loaded with action as readers will believe they are part of Tyler’s unit on patrol; on Afghanistan.  Readers will enjoy the latest Black Jaguar Squadron thriller (see Operation: Forbidden and His Woman In Command) as the metamorphosis of Tyler from anti female in combat roles to firm believer in the capability of trained female soldiers occurs while they walk through the valley of the shadow of death.

 

Harriet Klausner

Island Of Desire-Lorie O’Clare

December 28, 2011

Island Of Desire

Lorie O’Clare

Kensington Aphrodisia, Jan 31 2012, $14.00

ISBN: 9780758261397

 

Mark Tripp, Sr. orders his son Jr. to come home to their island retreat to assist him with his latest money making scheme that includes a male beauty pageant.  To the delight of Jr. Sr. hires beautiful Andrea Denton to run the pageant.

 

Andrea informs Mark the son that she is interested in a no strings sex with him while she remains on the island.  Once the gala is over so is their tryst.  Mark is ecstatic agreeing to her terms.  As they enjoy their erotic exotic encounters, someone seems to be sabotaging the pageant as a string of suspicious accidents occur.  The pair investigates who is behind the increasingly dangerous incidents.

 

The story line is thin (except for Mark’s lower head) in spite of the amateur sleuth subplot as that feels somewhat forced to add suspense to the engaging erotic romance.  The lead pairing are likable protagonists who know what they (and readers) want and go out and perform.  Sub-genre fans will enjoy Island of Desire as the sex is hot.

 

Harriet Klausner

Simply Carnal-Kate Pearce

December 28, 2011

Simply Carnal

Kate Pearce

Kensington Aphrodisia, Jan 31 2012, $14.00

ISBN: 9780758269454

 

At Madame Helene’s Pleasure House, son of the owner Christian Delornay manages the brothel.  Being around trysts 24/7 for years, he feels sex is a pleasant interlude in which romantic love does not matter or exist.  The cynic hires Mrs. Elizabeth Smith as his assistant.  He fails to inform the widow that part of her job description is his mentoring her in simply sensual seductive surrender:

 

However, Mrs. Smith conceals her innermost desires from her employer.  He refuses to accept her not surrendering to him with her carnal need.  As he simply brings her pleasure that equals his temporary satiation, he needs more of her.

 

The latest House of Pleasure erotic regency romance (see Simply Forbidden, Simply Sexual, Simply Sinful, Simply Shameless, Simply Wicked and Simply Insatiable) is simply a delightful entertaining historical.  Christian and Mrs. Smith are fully-developed (beyond just his lower head) intriguing protagonists especially her as she brings an aura of sad mystery to the mix.  Although the storyline is somewhat thin, series fans will enjoy the owner’s son and the widow making it as the pair brings sex and humor to a fun tale.

 

Harriet Klausner

 

 

Simply Carnal-Kate Pearce

December 28, 2011

Simply Carnal

Kate Pearce

Kensington Aphrodisia, Jan 31 2012, $14.00

ISBN: 9780758269454

 

At Madame Helene’s Pleasure House, son of the owner Christian Delornay manages the brothel.  Being around trysts 24/7 for years, he feels sex is a pleasant interlude in which romantic love does not matter or exist.  The cynic hires Mrs. Elizabeth Smith as his assistant.  He fails to inform the widow that part of her job description is his mentoring her in simply sensual seductive surrender:

 

However, Mrs. Smith conceals her innermost desires from her employer.  He refuses to accept her not surrendering to him with her carnal need.  As he simply brings her pleasure that equals his temporary satiation, he needs more of her.

 

The latest House of Pleasure erotic regency romance (see Simply Forbidden, Simply Sexual, Simply Sinful, Simply Shameless, Simply Wicked and Simply Insatiable) is simply a delightful entertaining historical.  Christian and Mrs. Smith are fully-developed (beyond just his lower head) intriguing protagonists especially her as she brings an aura of sad mystery to the mix.  Although the storyline is somewhat thin, series fans will enjoy the owner’s son and the widow making it as the pair brings sex and humor to a fun tale.

 

Harriet Klausner

 

 

Between Love And Duty-Janice Kay Johnson

December 27, 2011

Between Love And Duty

Janice Kay Johnson

Harlequin SuperRomance, Feb 7 2012, $5.50

ISBN: 9780373717583

 

The court assigns advocate Jane Brooks to protect the interests of teenager Tito Ortiz.  His father is leaving prison and demands custody of his child.  Police captain Duncan MacLachlan has acted as a big brother to the troubled teen as he knows first-hand what it is like to be not raised properly by terrible parents.  He wants the right thing for Tito.

 

Duncan and Jane argue over what is right for Tito.  He sees a world of good and bad with no straddling or gray area; she sees people acting at times good and bad.  Attracted to one another, they disagree as to what is best for this at risk teen.  However, when Jane’s life becomes threatened, Duncan knows he would risk his to keep her safe as he loves his adversarial advocate.

 

The key to this powerful contemporary romance is Duncan as his black and white philosophy about humans is deftly developed from a troubled childhood in which some people like his parents were bad and some like his mentor were good.  Jane struggles with understanding his polar absolute belief as she sees the grays in everyone.  Although the suspense is handled nicely, it is unnecessary as readers will relish this strong tale of two individuals in love but the adult is the child and each carries tons of childhood baggage.

 

Harriet Klausner