Category Archives: Romance

Book Review: ‘The Mine’ by John A. Heldt

Title: The Mine (Northwest Passage Book 1)

Published: 13th February 2012

Author: John A. Heldt

Facebook: www.facebook.com/johnaheldt

 

Synopsis:

In May 2000, Joel Smith is a cocky, adventurous young man who sees the world as his playground. But when the college senior, days from graduation, enters an abandoned Montana mine, he discovers the price of reckless curiosity. He emerges in May 1941 with a cell phone he can’t use, money he can’t spend, and little but his wits to guide his way. Stuck in the age of swing dancing and a peacetime draft, Joel begins a new life as the nation drifts toward war. With the help of his 21-year-old trailblazing grandmother and her friends, he finds his place in a world he knew only from movies and books. But when an opportunity comes to return to the present, Joel must decide whether to leave his new love in the past or choose a course that will alter their lives forever. THE MINE is a love story that follows a humbled man through a critical time in history as he adjusts to new surroundings and wrestles with the knowledge of things to come.

 

Review:

Joel is on a road trip with a difference with his college friend Adam. If you see a gold mine your first thought might be that you hope to find some if you take a closer look. Getting sucked into another time – 1941 to be exact – might not cross your mind and ends up being something else entirely. Seems Joel is about to get a history lesson he will never forget.

Joel is beyond confused when he leaves the mine. Everything around him has changed and Adam is nowhere to be found. Going to the last place he remembers is his first thought but even being there doesn’t help. He gets a bit of a rude awakening when he figures out he has somehow gone back in time. He has nothing on him that will help pay his way and only his wits to guide him.

A journey has began that will lead him to a future that might have already be fated when he meets Tom and all that follow. Tom was a lovable jokey character who you warmed to quickly. Coming to his aid was the best decision Joel made as it brought him to a new family. After Joel steps in to help Tom from getting beaten up he takes him home as a thank you. His dad the next day, after a bit of a grilling, gives him the opportunity to work at his furniture shop. He gets a lifeline and the warmth of a family where he thought he had none. Though true family might be closer than he thinks after he meets Tom’s girlfriend, she has a name that sounds familiar – his grandmothers to be exact.

Great female characters created that seemed to compliment each other well. Ginny is a fierce, strong, loyal friend and clearly only wants the best for her friends. Linda seemed a little forward and had a quick fuse but you understand why. Katie was a quite instigator in a few things but again a loyal friend. Grace however is who caught Joel’s attention from just one look though. Down on his luck and after a harrowing journey to get to Seattle while sitting on a bench he looks up to see her. He seems to have caught her attention too. She saw he looked so sad and lost and you get the feeling she wanted to help. When he sees Grace again he is more than pleased, well that is until she gets introduced as the fiancé of Paul. Seems she is an unattainable woman, but one who he can’t get out of his mind.

Seems Grace has some serious thinking to do as her heart is about to be pulled in two different directions. Even though he is chasing someone who is technically taken for the time being he is such a gentleman throughout. He knows what she is going through is tough and doesn’t want to put pressure on her but he knows there is something special about her. Somehow they are fated to be together. But romance aside that’s not all that is troubling Joel. He may have a bit of fun with bets to win some cash but he knows the real danger that is coming with war on the horizon. Lives are going to change and he has to be careful with how much he says. If he changes something too much he might not even exist. Whenever he tries to think about it too much you can almost see his head spin. Along the way he will make great friends who feel like family and the love of his life. But when the chance comes to return home is he going to be able to give up the life he has created with the woman he wants or go home to the future he’s from?

A good bit of writing that will draw you in from the first page. A time travelling romance at its best. Definitely one to check out, I wonder where the next person will get taken?

4 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review.

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Book Review: ‘Once Upon a Tablecloth’ by Leslie Hachtel

Title: Once Upon a Tablecloth

Published: 15th January 2017

Author: Leslie Hachtel

Facebook: www.facebook.com/lesliehachtelwriter

Twitter: @LeslieHachtel

 

Synopsis:

Nick Jordan acquires failing restaurants, then makes them prosperous. But when Lily Mercer calls him for help, he didn’t count on falling in love. Or that someone wants to kill her. And with so many obstacles and threats, can she survive? Can their love?

 

Review:

Lily’s restaurant Daisy’s is failing and she needs help before it goes under. If the dismal excuse for edible food and failing sales weren’t bad enough the dead guy on the doorstep would be sure to put people off. Step in Nick the knight to save the day. Well he may not be a knight at the start with his tactics (hello 51% share!) but he does get there in the end. She inherited the restaurant after her brother Dennis and father died in a car accident. It was meant to be an accident but murder it seems was the real cause. Seems someone is out to get Lily’s family and Daisy’s is a target too. Through it all you have a great close nit family atmosphere with her staff and friends at the restaurant. Her best friend Cece was a great sounding board for Lily and clearly knows what’s best. Right from the start you can see there is great chemistry between Lily and Nick, even if at the start she doesn’t want to like him. It might be the start of something great but they need to watch their backs as danger is just around the corner.

Nick seems to think at the start that if he just has a taste of Lily it will get her out of his system. With everything that happened in his childhood he shut down emotionally. It means he doesn’t really know how to handle them now they have come alive after meeting her. Its like she is bringing him back to life just like he is helping bring Daisy’s back to life. With his emotions coming back he realizes that he doesn’t really like being rejected. When it’s by Lily he can’t help himself from coming back for more to get her to see him in a different light. She makes him see a future when he thought he had none to share. She wants something stable not a one, or two, nightstand. I think when she shows him what he can’t have it just makes him realize how much he wants it. Love is definitely on the cards, or should that be the menu, but with danger and sabotage at every turn will they get a HEA or will it all go up in flames.

With Nick not having a good life growing up and only getting a break into the food business because of Rex he feels like he owes him. Seems the prodigy has overcome the master and he’s not happy about it. Never liked Rex or his vial spoiled brat of a daughter Pamela. Right from the start something was off about them. They are clearly people who are used to getting their own way and not ones to be rejected. I’d say a bit delusional as well in regards to Pamela. A monster of her father’s creation, one he makes no apology for.

First book I’ve read by this author and I would definitely check out others. Good story telling with the romance and intrigue with trying to connect all the dots. This old boyfriend of Pamela’s keeps getting mentioned and it’s clear it’s the key to everything. When it falls into place you are like ‘oh god yeah, now I see it’. A recommended read that has it all – mystery, suspense and a good romantic romance vibe throughout.

4 out of 5 stars

I received this ARC from Penny Sansevieri Marketing for my honest review.

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Book Review: ‘Firestorm’ by Anne Malcom

Published: 19th October 2015
Author: Anne Malcom

Facebook: www.facebook.com/annemalcomauthor

Synopsis:

Amy Abrams doesn’t do love. Nor does she do emotional attachments; unless you count the connection she has with designer handbags. She grew up in an Upper East Side penthouse, which had about as much affection within its tastefully decorated walls as Castle Dracula. Her family is the precise reason why she points her red-soled heels firmly in the opposite direction of that dreaded four-letter word.

Then it happens. Love. It comes right out of the blue and knocks her off her six-inch heels. She learns that love comes with pesky side effects such as heartbreak, which seriously messes with the complexion. Amy promises herself that she’ll never open herself to that horrible feeling again. She doesn’t count on an infuriating, albeit drool-worthy biker to roar into her life and ruin the plans she had of locking up her heart. She keeps her distance, wary of the sinfully sexy biker whose tattoos should read Warning – dangerous alpha male, will screw up your life.

Amy may be an Upper East Side princess but she wasn’t looking for Prince Charming. She wouldn’t mind the name of his hair stylist, though. Brock certainly isn’t a knight in shining armor, but he consumes her, body and soul. Drama pulls them apart; danger will bring them back together. When Amy is threatened Brock is there ready to save her life. Her heart is another story.

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2017 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book with weather in the title. Had to double-check it but there is a weather system called a firestorm. Name is quite apt with the intensity of emotions, chemistry and passion that explode whenever Amy and Brock are within a few feet of each other.

So we start with Amy drowning her sorrows in Mexico because she just can’t deal with pretending anymore. Alone with her thoughts she goes back to how she first met Ian and how everything started. She could be seen as hitting bottom with not being able to handle everything around her. Guilt and heartbreak running through her mind with who she had chosen. That changes shortly after when she abruptly gets kidnapped. Seems being kidnapped is not going to change how she acts for anyone. She just says whatever she is thinking and doesn’t quite let herself really see the danger she is in. Even after being presented to the man in charge Clark Devon and having to deal with the psycho that is Rafe. How he made the whole kidnapping seem like an unfortunate event in regards to a business deal is beyond me. She doesn’t think she will have anyone to come and save her, not a certain someone from Amber who she fears now hates her, so she will have to save herself. Really girl you thought your man wasn’t coming to get you the moment he knew you were taken. Do you know nothing about these bikers? While in her gilded cage even with trying to think of an escape she has time to think and it gives us a glimpse back at how everything started with not only Ian before she moved to Amber but also how intense everything was with Brock. With Ian it was like closure, a goodbye so she could be with the man she was always meant to be with. It does overlap some of what happened in Making the Cut but in a good way as it was like filling in the blanks.

When you get to the flash backs and then present day firestorm is right when Amy and Brock get together. Its like they ignite each other and just burn. Fight like cat and dog but boy do they know how to make up. She knows what buttons to push with him and he takes none of her shit. He doesn’t treat her like she’s perfect up on a pedestal. Its raw and real and once he decides enough is enough with her pushing him away he goes all in with getting her to be his and only his with nothing (no ghosts) hanging over them. He saw straight through all her bullshit to what she was really afraid of. Keep breaking those walls down Brock you’ve almost got to her core where you’ll find it’s always been you from the moment you met. She was his firestorm and one look made her his forever. Just took her a little longer to accept it was real. He was just as much hers from that first meeting.

Love Amy’s Uncle Garrett and that he was the one that stepped up to get the help she needed from her Amber family. Her parents are just cold fish that need to stay out of her life for good. Love that her friend Ry gets a cameo again if just from a phone call. He seriously doesn’t like all the danger his girls have been in since moving. Well at least she called him the second time. Seems Gwen and Amy can start a kidnapping awareness group with both being members of that club a couple times over. Here’s hoping they won’t have to deal with it again. But even if they, or any other of the clubs women, do get kidnapped they know their men will be there to save the day and eliminate the threat from happening again.

All our favourite brooding bikers are back. Lucky is still Lucky, great to break any and all tension. Bull is slowly starting to show a few emotions, getting there but not quite healed yet (can’t wait for his book!). Cade and Gwen are as hot and heavy and loved up as ever. He may be a doting husband and father but put a member of his family in danger and you get a scary motherfucker on your tail.

5 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review.

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Book Review: ‘Hot as Puck’ by Lili Valente

Title: Hot as Puck

Published: 1st April 2017

Publisher: Self Taught Ninja

Author: Lili Valente

Facebook: www.facebook.com/AuthorLiliValente

 

Synopsis:

The NHL’s biggest bad boy is about to fall for the virgin next door…

I am the world’s biggest dating failure. We’re talking my last date went home with our waitress kind of failure.

But I have an ace in the back pocket of my mom jeans–my sexy-as-sin best friend, NHL superstar forward, Justin Cruise.

Justin owes me favors dating back to seventh grade, long before he became a hotshot with a world famous…stick. So in return for my undying platonic loyalty, all I want is an easy-peasy crash course on how to be a sex goddess.

How hard can it be?

***

I have never been so hard in my life.

The things I want to do to my sweet, kindergarten-teaching, mitten-crocheting best friend Libby Collins are ten different kinds of wrong. Maybe twenty.

But I’m a firm believer in teaching by example, and by the end of our first lesson, we’ve graduated to a hands on approach to her sexual education: my hands all over her, her hands all over me, and her hot mouth melting beneath mine as I prove to her there isn’t a damned thing wrong with the way she kisses.

Give me a month, and I’ll transform Libby from wall flower to wall banger, and ensure she’s confident enough to seduce any guy she wants.

Problem is… the only guy I want her seducing is me.

Hot as Puck is a sexy, flirty, friends-to-lovers Standalone romantic comedy from USA Today Bestseller Lili Valente.

 

Review:

Libby is a kindergarten teacher who thinks she is in love/lust with the Deputy Head Roger. Which would be a good thing if she had any idea how she was going to broach the subject of dating with him. She thinks he is who she wants with how she feels but that’s before Justin shows her the true meaning of passion with a few interesting lessons. Seems Liddy wants a little help in the dating department (well she wants to be a sex goddess but baby steps first) as she feels somewhat lacking so she hopes she can make her friend Justin an offer he can’t refuse.

Well at first he does because he can’t really get his head around what she’s asking but the more he looks at her in a new light – tight revealing tops will do that – the more he is tempted. His approach to helping her though is not all notebooks and tests like she thought. He is very much a hands on teacher and I think he wants to give her an A after one class. Seems they only needed a bit of passion to ignite their friendship into something a lot hotter. Seriously girl why did you think Roger was the man for you. There is a very good reason you are so comfortable and sure of yourself with Justin, you are just going to wish you saw it sooner! Ok breathe. Him too as after one taste – and after finding out her little secret – he is more than ready to be the one and only from then on. Until they admit their feelings though through fear of getting rejected they are in a bit of a stale mate. Well if they thought that was their only problem then they should have thought again as Libby’s sister Laura might just have a few things to say about what is going on.

Funny how what Justin jokes about at the beginning has a sneaky way of coming true and how everything just falls into place. Funny, quirky characters that have a lot of chemistry right from the start with their easygoing friendship and then hotter than hell passion. Love that he had a bit of a geeky quirky side. I mean she’s the one who got him interested in crouching. Some of the things he creates and then showcases on his Instagram account you are just dying to see. Thought Laura was a right laugh. I had a feeling that it was Brendan she was talking about when mentioning a guy she liked. Can’t wait for their book. These ice hockey players are so hot I’m surprised they don’t melt the ice. Loved it from the start and have to say that if you want a funny hot romance to read then you should definitely check out Lili’s books.

5 out of 5 stars

I received this ARC from Give Me Books for my honest review.

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Book Review: ‘Making the Cut’ by Anne Malcom

Title: Making the Cut (The Sons of Templar MC Book 1)

Published: 26th April 2015

Author: Anne Malcom

Facebook: www.facebook.com/annemalcomauthor

 

Synopsis:

Gwen Alexandra does not need a man in her life. Especially not a man who looks like Chris Hemsworth and Joe Manganiello’s love child. One wearing leather, riding a Harley, and covered in tattoos.

Gwen can bet every pair of her Manolo’s that Cade Fletcher is trouble. From the moment she meets him, the attraction sizzles between them. Gwen has a problem when it comes to attractive men in motorcycle clubs. The last one she got involved with almost killed her.

After healing physically, Gwen decides to get a new start in a small town, half a country away from the man who nearly cost her her life. She isn’t in town five minutes when she runs into Cade, a man that is too sexy and dangerous for his own good.

She tries to keep away from him, to ignore the attraction between them. But the biker has other ideas, soon she is in way over her head, and her heart, and her life are in danger once again.

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2017 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book with action and adventure in it. It has both in spades and you are just enjoying the ride it takes you on.

OMG with what Gwen had been through you can completely understand why she would be weary of men, especially those wearing Cuts. You start right in the middle of her brutal attack and know she gets away to heal physically but mentally is something else entirely. Seems those she should be afraid of might just be the ones to heal her most. Cade most definitely being the one out front in that respect.

So Gwen is in Amber at her new house for all of five minutes before she is confronted with Cade. You would think that a deep sexy voice asking if she needs any help would have her head spin. It does just not the way Cade was hoping for. He can see her fear straight away so backs off, but not before saying he will see her around. The way he says it is like a promise. One meeting and her heart is going ten to the dozen, and not just from fear, something a little further south is waking up. When her best friend Amy arrives they start with setting up her new clothes store and Amy can’t help but notice all the good looking men that appear to be around town. (Seriously though are only hot people allowed to live here? Umm… holiday location perhaps?) She is more than pleased when she notices some while they are out at dinner. Not so much when she sees Gwen almost have a panic attack at the sight of them, only after noticing that they are wearing cuts. You really would want her in your corner because she more than handles it when they come over to say hi. They might be acting polite but Gwen still can’t get away quick enough. If she thought that was the last she would see of Cade she was severely mistaken. Out on her porch in the middle of the night – while getting a little handsy at the thought of Cade I might add – she gets a shock when he appears. Dropping her wine glass has her stepping right on it. Cade to the rescue it seems as he soon sweeps her off her feet. Seems even she can’t deny the chemistry when he has her that close. I mean seriously you are just waiting for a match to spark it – though that doesn’t happen until a few days later at a friendly BBQ. It’s pretty clear that he has claimed her, whether she is ready to except it is something else entirely.

Cade is clearly a man who knows what he wants and goes for it. One look and he decided that Gwen was going to be his but to get her he needs to understand why she all but faints at the sight of him and his boys. Yes he can be a bit crass at times (is it wrong that I kind of liked it?) and pretty much likes to tell her he wants to fuck her any chance he can get, but she does manage to put him in his place when he does. She can also be a bit whiney at times herself, frustrating him right back, mainly after she has had a couple of drinks. (Side note – they do like to have a few drinks in this one. Must be the heat.) Being involved with someone from a MC has its drawbacks though. Something Gwen knows only too well and the longer she is with him the more those drawbacks show their ugly heads, namely in the shape of spiders. Danger is never too far away and its not just from the past. Its what she was running from and it seems to be following her in a different way. Can Cade keep her safe and help her heal or will she burn all over again?

Loved the other characters that come into the action. Lucky was hilarious and my heart just broke for Bull. Poor Luke, the cop vying for Gwen’s attention, he never really stood a chance. I’m afraid that ship sailed after one look from Cade. Amy was a bit of a comical value and she seems to like putting herself in a mess in the relationship department. I really want to know whom she would have chosen though, Ian or Brock. Heartache at the end, but I did kind of see it coming.

Out of this world chemistry. Seriously how hot do they burn? Supernova I think! If you were looking for a good MC romance to get started with then I would definitely recommend this one. Can’t wait to check out the rest of the series now. Who’s up for moving to Amber? I know I am.

5 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review.

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