The Rogue’s Proposal. Jennifer Haymore. 2013. 401 pages. Forever. [Source: ARC provided courtesy of Netgalley.] Emma’s husband is dead and her family is on its last pennies. Luke’s mother is missing and he’s got a chip on his royal shoulder. They’re after the same man, whom they hope has the answers they both need to put their respective lives back on track. The two team up in search of the elusive Roger Morton, but get much more than either of them bargained for. I don’t typically read historical romance, but I found myself caught up in this story. Within a few pages, I forgot that I was reading a story set centuries ago and instead was wrapped up in a compelling plot. The themes and experiences of Emma and Luke transcend time and are easily relatable. Emma struggles with learning the truth behind her marriage and is forced to come to terms with her sheltered sexual experiences. Luke is tired of being seen as a scoundrel while living in the shadow of his “perfect” brother and is grappling with a revelation about his family that complicates his ability to forge his own identity. Together, they’re challenged to think differently not…
Since You’ve Been Gone. Mary Jennifer Payne. 2015. Dundurn. 224 pages. [Source: NetGalley]. It’s not often that a book leaves me unsettled, but more and more I’m finding that YA books leave me just that. Since You’ve Been Gone follows 15-year-old Edie Fraser as she adjusts to life in England after abruptly fleeing her home in Canada with her mother. Mere days after settling into a new home and school, Edie comes home to find that her mother has failed to keep their communication pact and is missing. Edie is left to further adjust to life in a strange new city by herself but also find out what’s become of her mother. In her attempts to do so, she runs afoul of administrators in her school and the people she’s come to consider her new friends.
All Fired Up. Kate Meader. 2013. 416 pages. Forever. [ARC provided courtesy of NetGalley.] This story is as hot as the flames in the kitchen of Sarriette and the sexual chemistry between its two main characters, Shane and Cara, is definitely its fuel. All Fired Up is a great romance filled with just the right balance of lust, attitude, and humor and has so many references to delicious food that my mouth watered most of the time. I loved the writing overall. Meader has a way of building up just the right amount of tension and letting it crest a while before the reader everything they want. I knew while I was reading chapter 1 that I was in for a treat. In most books, the problem is front and center within the first page. Instead, I was left wondering what the awkwardness was between Cara and Shane for the entire chapter. It’s not often the book starts with the marriage, and that an immediate solution wasn’t granted made it all the more enticing to keep reading.
Unexpected Love. Casey Clipper. 2014. 213 pages. Amazon Digital Publishing. [Source: ARC provided courtesy of The Book Gurus.] Unexpected Love is the second installment in Clipper’s “Love Series.” As far as I can tell, the series revolves around a group of cousins in the Millen family. Close-knit to a fault, the family is filled with ex-military alpha males who protect the women in their families at all costs. This book in particular focuses on Ryan Millen, a playboy whose life is turned upside down when he unexpectedly becomes a father overnight. Financially strapped Lynn enters his life and the two find a seemingly mutually beneficial arrangement around the care of his son newborn son Brady. I think this is a great book for readers who enjoy romances filled with Alpha males and/or military-types. Every single man in this book is imposing and aggressive, bordering on overbearing. The women in the book seem to enjoy that so it works. But if that’s not your thing … Unexpected Love may not suit your fancy. Regardless of personality type, the guys in the book mean well and Clipper does a good job of pairing them with women who balance them out and in some cases go toe-to-toe with them….
Always Yours. Kari March. 2014. Amazon Digital Publishing. 281 pages. [Source: ARC provided courtesy of The Book Gurus.] I’m pretty excited to be taking part in a blog tour for Kari March’s latest release, Always Yours, her second release of 2014. Always Yours is a standalone sequel to March’s debut novel, Promise Me Always. I tend to prefer starting interrelated books with the first in the “series,” so I felt it was necessary to start with Promise Me Always. I was extremely impressed at her ability to ensure that Always Yours could stand on its own merits as it interwove the characters and events from the first book. Always Yours centers on Cam and Cara, two young adults who’ve had their fair share of heartache at the hands of their family and romantic partners. For Cara, when the going gets tough, the people in her life leave. Cam, on the other hand, cannot keep genuine women in his life. When they meet, neither is at a place in their life where they want to welcome any serious attachment. Too bad their bodies (and later hearts) don’t seem to understand that. From the start, the two have undeniable chemistry, which leads to heated exchanges, both verbally and physically.