Sunday, January 14, 2018

Review: The Rancher's Baby by Maisey Yates

Publication Date: January 2nd 2018 by Harlequin Desire
Purchase Links: Amazon | Kobo | Barnes & Noble | iBooks
Pages: 224

About the book: 

She’s having her best friend’s baby… Only from New York Times bestselling author Maisey Yates!
When a torrid, possibly dangerous scandal comes to Royal, Texas, Selena Jacobs is nearly caught in the middle. Until her best friend Knox McCoy ensures her safety — by moving in! Selena has loved Knox for years, but she’s never had the courage to tell him. Now the sparks she’s tried to smother burn out of control…and leave her pregnant. But with the pain in his past, will Knox finally take a chance on love…with her?

My Thoughts:
Selena and Knox have been best friends since college, attracted back then but a turn of events led to both marrying others while remaining best friends.  Selena’s marriage in name only to satisfy requirements for a trust fund, although Knox never knew. Secretly Selena had always loved Knox but muted those feeling when he married.  His marriage collapsed after the death of his toddler, and he’s still reeling from the pain a few years later, but when he shows up for the funeral of her ex-husband their attraction sparks alive. 

Selena had issues that made it so that if Knox did come onto her back in college it probably wouldn’t have worked out. Now with years clarifying what’s important, and when a few secrets Selena has held close start to come out, she wonders why she should hold back anymore.  The passion between them is better than she could ever imagined but convincing Knox that he deserves happiness after the pain of losing his daughter is no small task.

You know from the book description that Selena ends up pregnant after they give into their desires, but that didn’t happen until the latter portion of the book. I felt like their romance took a while to develop, trading emotions, discovering there was still quite a lot they didn’t know about each other, and I was fully invested in their emotional journey. 

This isn’t a very long book, I read it one day, and there was only a little bit drama on Knox’s side at the end.  I was irritated with him, and I thought he maybe should’ve done a little more groveling, but I was pleased with the beautiful ending. 

4 Suns

Connect with Maisey Yates:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Review: Blood Fury by J.R. Ward

Publication Date: January 9th 2018 by Ballantine Books 
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks 

About the book: 

A vampire aristocrat, Peyton is well aware of his duty to his bloodline: mate with an appropriate female of his class and carry on his family’s traditions. And he thought he’d found his perfect match—until she fell in love with someone else. Yet when his split-second decision in a battle with the enemy endangers the life of another trainee, Peyton has to face the idea that his future, and his heart, actually lie with another.

Novo, as a female in the Black Dagger Brotherhood’s training program, feels like she has to prove herself to everybody—and she has no interest in being distracted by falling in love. But when Peyton proves to be so much more than a rich playboy, she is forced to confront the tragedy that has broken her soul and closed her off from love.

As the two grapple with Novo’s past and Peyton’s present, another couple must contend with an erotic connection that is unparalleled—and potentially scandalous.

Saxton, who has had his heart broken, discovers in himself a deep-seated attraction to Ruhn, a new member of the household. But will the other male explore the connection? Or will he close his mind and his heart to what could be true love . . . and cost Saxton everything?

My Thoughts:
Blood Fury had not one, but two romances I thoroughly enjoyed. Novo and Peyton may throw verbal barbs at each other, but there’s an undercurrent of attraction brewing between them.  Novo, however, writes Peyton off as a rich, shallow playboy, normal for the aristocratic glymera. Also, it seems Peyton does nothing but moon over Paradise, another member in their training team. It doesn’t matter Paradise is bonded to another male, Novo wants nothing to do with a male who just wants to get his rocks off while in love with someone else.  She’s been hurt in the past and will not allow anyone close enough to damage her heart again.  Yet, when Novo is injured Peyton is the one who stays by her side and for some reason she allows it, wants his presence even.

Petyon realizes whatever he felt for Paradise pales in comparison to his feeling for Novo when she’s injured. He also realizes he needs to play things just right with her as he senses her need to keep others at a distance. I loved that he took this all into consideration while being there for her exactly when she needed him. Their romance was hot and touching, and I loved every minute!

We met Ruhn in the last book; Bitty’s uncle come to reunite with her as the only family she has left, but he’s been struggling to fit into life at the mansion.  Even though the Brothers and family have been nothing but welcoming, he can’t help but feel less in their presence due to his past, which come to find out is completely heartbreaking.  Also, he has no job and doesn’t feel right just taking the Brother’s generosity. 

Saxton, Wrath’s chief advisor and attorney has been hurting ever since Blay chose another over him.  His emotions feel bleak and directionless and he’s thinking of getting out of Caldwell and away from the constant reminders of Blay.  However, a situation pairs Ruhn and Saxton together, and his heart is once again awakened.  

I loved Ruhn! He’s so big and intimidating to look at, but all mushy heart and feelings underneath!  Saxton and Ruhn were at first tentative and unsure about each other’s feelings and it was cute seeing them fall for each other.  The romance was sweet, and I’m thrilled these two connected.

I’m really loving the new generation of Black Dagger stories!  J.R. Ward’s storytelling is captivating, and hot without adding a bunch of unnecessary angst.  Just what I needed after reading two underwhelming stories, and it really made Ms. Ward’s talent stand out in contrast.

4 Suns

About the Author
J. R. Ward is the author of more than thirty previous novels, including those in her #1 NYT bestselling Black Dagger Brotherhood series. She lives in the South with her family, and is hard at work on the next Black Dagger Brotherhood book, The Thief (On Sale April 10, 2018).

Connect with J.R. Ward: Facebook: J.R.WardAuthor • Twitter: @JRWard1 • Instagram: jrwardauthor • Website:

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Favorites of 2017 & a Giveaway!

I know this is a little late coming seeing as we're already a week into the new year, but I wanted to share my favorite reads from 2017.  Out of the 185 books I read last year I had a hard time narrowing the list down to just the fifteen you see below (well, not technically 15 since one is a series, eek!):

(Click on titles for Goodreads link)

The first three are Contemporary Romance/Woman's Fiction:

Worth the Wait and Pipe Dreams were both second chance romances that were heart wrenching in spots! I read Pipe Dreams twice, unable to let the story go after getting to the last page!  Now That You Mention It was a blend of women's fiction, a little bit of romance, a little bit of mystery, and it surprised me with some very dark parts, but it was just amazing!

The next books are Historical Romance, and a couple are blended with Fantasy as well:

I read the Devil in Spring first even though it was the 3rd book in The Ravenels series, and then went back and started at book one. Marrying Winterborne was my favorite so far, but the whole series is wonderful!  Someone to Wed was just fantastic!  I didn't like Wren too much at first, she was a prickly character, but I could understand why.  My heart went out to her and I loved her a little more with every page! The Bird and the Sword was really good a story of magic, fantasy, political intrigue, and romance.  My Lady Jane was a hoot! Hilarious and fun! I definitely like this version of history better than what actually happened!  I totally recommend the audio version.

The next books are Mystery and or Thrillers, usually with a bit of romance thrown it:

Absolute Darkness was another phenomenal installment in the Casey Duncan series!  Shattered paired Max Revere and Lucy Kincaid together and I loved it! I was happy that Max finally had some revelations about what she wants romantically in life.  Not willing to put up with bits and pieces anymore made me want to cheer for her!  I blew threw the whole Will Trent series by Karin Slaughter earlier this year; loved ever book, Unseen (book 7) was memorable, but I have to say the whole series is amazing! The Good Daughter was a standalone by Karin Slaughter and I was afraid it wouldn't live up to the awesomeness of Will Trent, but I needn't have worried!

And finally Urban Fantasy:

You'd think by book ten Mercy Thompson would be losing some steam, but wow, Silence Fallen was soooo fantastic it prompted me to re-read *listen* the entire series!  Wildfire is supposed to be the last book in the Hidden Legacy series, but I'm hoping there will be more.  I spoke to the authors at an event and they would like to write more, as well, and it seemed like there's a good chance it could happen. Fingers crossed!

So these were my favorite reads from 2017.  What were yours?

$10 @ US Amazon or US Barnes & Noble or up to $10 @ The Book Depository.  This giveaway is International as long as The Book Depository ships to your country.  Click HERE for list of countries.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Review: Into the Night by Cynthia Eden

Publication Date: December 26th 2017 by HQN
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

About the book:

Two FBI agents are caught in a merciless vigilante’s crosshairs in New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Eden’s electric Killer Instinct series

Sheltered in the shadows of the Smoky Mountains is the suspect who’s summoned FBI agent Macey Night’s fears to the surface. Every day that the “Profiler,” a vigilante serial killer, escapes justice is another day she’s reminded of what it is to be a ruthless predator’s prey. Capturing him is a craving deeper than anything she’s felt in a long time. But Agent Bowen Murphy, equal parts sexy and volatile, seems hell-bent on changing that. Working together—needing, living and breathing each other—they’re entwined to distraction.

Bowen’s used to operating on impulse: act, don’t feel. Now Macey and the controlled terror behind her beautiful eyes have him rethinking everything, including his rule to never get close to a colleague. He’s willing to fight for a future with Macey, but the consequences of love could be deadly.

My Thoughts:
Bowen and Macey are partners in Samantha Dark’s unique FBI profiling division, and so even though they’re attracted to each other they’ve kept their relationship professional.  That’s about to change when Macey’s dark past becomes their latest case.  Emotions that Macey’s been able to lock down and control come churning up and she turns to Bowen for comfort and oblivion, giving in to that powerful sexual pull between them. 

Bowen’s crazy about Macey, but his own dark past and Macey’s reaction has held him back from revealing his feelings. However, he’s not about to refuse her offer of sex with no-strings now even if he wants more.  And with the new threat, a vigilante killer who knows both Macey and Bowen’s past, he’s grabbing on and holding her tight. 

This killer is a few steps ahead of Macey and Bowen, hunting notorious killers while taunting them.  It seems he’s focused his sinister attention on them for some unknown reason.  They both struggle with a dark past, the reason they were invited to be on Samantha’s profiling team is because they’ve both had personal experience with serial killers. Macey was a friend, colleague, and then victim of “The Doctor”.  She barely managed to get away with her life, while “The Doctor” got away to hunt more. Bowen’s link to a serial killer is revealed as the story progresses, and each of their tales figure into this story. 

While I did figure out a couple of things, there were quite a few surprises and twists in this installment.  I was on the edge of my seat and enjoyed every minute! Bowen and Macey’s romance was a thrill as well; definite sparks and chemistry, everything I hoped it would be!  

4 Suns

Monday, January 1, 2018

Review: The Pines of Winder Ranch by RaeAnne Thayne

Publication Date: January 1st 2018 by HQN
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

About the book:

Come home to Winder Ranch in these two beloved stories, where broken hearts can find exactly what they need to heal — and love again

A Cold Creek Homecoming

When Quinn Southerland returns home to Winder Ranch, Idaho, to find former high school queen bee Tess Claybourn serving as his dying mother’s hospice nurse, he’s far from pleased. But recently widowed Tess has done a lot of growing up since then. And as the two reconnect, she can’t help but wonder if there’s room in Quinn’s tortured heart for forgiveness — and maybe even love…

A Cold Creek Reunion

After Taft Bowman lost his parents ten years ago, he buried himself in a grief that shut fiancée Laura Pendleton out completely. But now she’s back, recently widowed with two kids in tow, and Taft refuses to let her slip away again. Laura just wants a fresh start, but that’s easier said than done when seeing Taft stirs up feelings she thought she’d left in the past…

My Thoughts:
My review is for A Cold Creek Reunion, Taft and Laura’s story, as my copy only had that book. 

I just adored this second chance romance! Even though Laura is the one who ended their engagement I felt her crushed heart more, because she loved Taft and he shut her out.  Taft’s parents were murdered and instead of drawing comfort from Laura or confiding in her he spent more and more time at the local bar and hangout.  Taft wouldn’t admit to there being problem or agree to postpone the wedding, so Laura did what she thought she had to.  Since being in the same town with Taft and hearing of his exploits would shatter her further, Laura left the country and eventually married another. 

Now Laura’s back in Cold Creek with her two young children after her husband’s death six months earlier, needing the emotional support of family to help raise her kids.  It’s a mutually beneficial situation since the family’s inn is sorely in need of updates and repair, and Laura’s just the person for the job.  Unfortunately, being back in her hometown means running into Taft again, dredging up all the hurt, but also all the memories of their love before everything went downhill.  Laura is determined to protect her heart and the feelings of her children by keeping Taft at a distance, and I could understand why she wanted to do that, especially when I felt how badly it hurt for Laura to let Taft go. But life (and maybe a relative or two) had other plans.

By the time Taft realized what a monumental mistake it was to let Laura go, she was married to another.  Having her back home presents a second chance to win her over again, and I appreciated his determination!  He was so sweet with Laura, and especially her kids, and I think that made it just about impossible for her to shut him out.  The fire they had between ignites all over again, and I just wanted them to sort things out and get on with their long-overdue HEA!

Sweet, sentimental horse rides, getting caught in a storm, a gorgeous setting, adorable kids and animals are just icing on the cake for this emotional second chance romance.  

4 Suns