Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas


Saturday, December 24, 2011

Happy Christmas Eve


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

His Christmas Pleasure by Cathy Maxwell

His Christmas Pleasure
by Cathy Maxwell

Genre: Historical Romance | Seasonal

Anything Can Happen at Christmas!

When her father threatens to marry Abigail Montross off to a man twice her age (and with thirteen children!), she decides to elope instead with the irresistibly handsome Baron de Vasconia. She know all abut his notorious reputaiton. He is the most seductive man in all of London, but he’s vowed to protect her, so she allow herself to be tempted into his bed, promising to guard her heart at all costs.

Andres believes he’s entered into nothing more than a marriage of convenience with a charming and very wealthy young woman. But the days–and nights–Abigail spends in his arms soon reform this rogue. He’ll do anything to gain her love–until they each discover the truth about the other and old wounds are revealed.

It’s the season of miracles and passion–when love not only awakens the senses but delivers the greatest gift of all . . .

Abby is cherished by her parents and foolishly in love with the wrong man, but she doesn't know that. She's been jilted, past the "marriageable age" and isn't the most popular lady at the ball, but things quickly change when one of the hottest bachelors in town, Andres, defends her beauty and causes a big hoop-la throughout the gossip scene. Yet, when both Abby & Andres find themselves in a sticky situation, they turn to each other for aid in a daring plan that could be a blessing in disguise - but only if they have enough courage and love to pull it off!

I was kind of taken back by how much I found myself enjoying this book. I started reading one night before bed and next thing I know, I'm staying up till 1am engrossed in the tale and having a grand time with Abby & Andres's adventures. I found myself relating very closely to Abigale (shockingly so!!!) and that really bonded me to the main characters. The way the story was written felt like there were almost three different sections: Part One in plotting to run away and following their fated dreams, Part Two in the actual escape & capture, and Part Three in dealing with the consequences and making the best of it. Each section had very different feelings for me, thus adding to the realization of how the characters were changing emotionally and really developing throughout. I loved it!

Likes: It was entertaining to watch how comfortable the two main leads were around it other, especially from the very beginning. They made scenes very comical and memorable without a lot of effort.

Dislikes: Got a little lovey-dovey cheesy near the end, but that didn't change my feelings toward an overall enjoyable book! BUT, I felt there was very little seasonal aspects in this story to really make it a Christmas themed book.



Sunday, December 18, 2011

A Winter Scandal by Candace Camp

A Winter Scandal
(The St. Dwynwen Series, Book #1)
by Candace Camp

Genre: Historical Romance | Seasonal

Gabriel is intrigued by the vivacity in Thea’s flashing gray eyes when she accuses him of fathering the orphan, even as he adamantly maintains his innocence. The brooch is one he remembers all too well, however, and Gabriel is determined to find the mother of the missing child. As the mystery around the baby deepens, Gabriel is continually thrown together with Thea—and finds himself growing more entranced every day.

Even with whispers of winter scandal swirling around them, they cannot deny the longing in their hearts. A longing which promises the best gift of all: a shelter from the storm... in each other’s arms.

Thea Bainbridge has fully acknowledged she's a spinster and being the vicar's sister while turning twenty-seven unmarried has fully put her "on the shelf". Even though she dearly prays that things were different, she accepts her way of life until a baby is mysteriously left in her church's Christmas manger scene. Her only clue from the baby leads to the newest resident in town, Lord Morecombe (aka Gabriel). Before either of them know it, they're swept up into a race to uncover the babies identity and the reason behind its abandonment ... all while confronting their deepening feelings for each other during the festive Holiday season.

What a pleasing book! I highly enjoy the concept of time passing for two people who shared a pivotal moment in the past and meeting again in the future, but that was just one of the many delightful parts of the story. Little Matthew was way more adorable than a real baby could ever be, but he added a lot of cuteness to the overall tale and his interactions with everyone throughout really warmed up their written characters. The mystery concept was intriguing and it was nice to see Thea bloom throughout and really witness her hardened persona becoming softer and more open to love. Many of the side characters were appealing and I'm interested to see who will be the next couple in this series (*fingers crossed* for Damaris & Lord Rawdon)

Likes: Gabriel's persistent passion toward Thea was something I highly enjoyed throughout, he wasn't shy about public displays of affection or playfully tuning Thea's words back on her in a "mind-in-the-gutter" sort of way - Fun guy!

Dislikes: I had a different outcome in mind for Gabriel's sister, thus I was somewhat sad to find out the real truth!



Monday, December 12, 2011

The Mating by Nicky Charles

The Mating
(The Mating Series, Book #1)
by Nicky Charles

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Elise had no idea when she came home that day that she'd end up mated to a complete stranger. A new Alpha and the need for an alliance between packs have made her a pawn.

Elise has grown up in the lap of luxury being the Alpha's daughter and even though her pack is very traditional than most, she's content to one day marry her long-time friend, Bryan, and settle down. Yet, things unexpectedly change when Kane, an Alpha from a local pack, shows up and Elise finds herself mated to him within a few hours. Life quickly changes as Elise has to leave the only home she's ever know to live with a practical stranger and be the new alpha female of a different pack. Somewhat pleased that her new pack members are more "modern" than her previous one and while settling herself into her new role, Elise suddenly finds herself involved in a deadly plot that begins to drag her down a dangerous road. Can she put her trust in Kane and stand up for herself as the new alpha female or will the darkness drag her under?

I quickly became absorbed in this story! It was written in such a way that it was a joy to read and hard to put down. Elise was very straightforward and easy like as a character because she displayed a nice balance between naivety and curiosity. Kane was also very likeable since he came off as macho but in a good (I'm charming and considerate) way that is just so yummy in male leads. Their budding relationship was very prominent in the story and not overshadowed by the overall mystery of the tale, which can sometimes happen in a whodunit type of novel. Overall, great read that has me itching to check out the next books in the series. Also FREE nook eBooks on: Book #2 & Book #3.

Likes: Elise was very open minded about life and I think that made her more enjoyable throughout the story. Plus, the book had a lot of plot twists which were nice to unravel in the end.

Dislikes: As in any other shape-shifter society stories, there are always those "set" roles when it comes to pack members: the women are in the kitchen, the men out hunting, etc. -- all very evident in this tale but not overwhelmingly irritating.



Friday, December 9, 2011

All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire by Kerrelyn Sparks

All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire
Love At Stake Series, Book #5
by Kerrelyn Sparks

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Toni Davis’s Christmas Wish List
  1. Springing my best friend from the psych ward.
  2. Living somewhere that doesn’t have coffins in the basement. Occupied coffins.
  3. Finding Mr. Right. Please make him tall, dark, handsome, and ALIVE.

This Christmas isn’t so merry for Toni. Her best friend’s been locked up in a mental hospital ever since she told the police she was attacked by vampires, and the only way for Toni to get her out is to prove that bloodsuckers really do exist. So she’s taken a job as a bodyguard for the Undead, but she gets more than she's bargained for, especially when she meets Ian MacPhie, a Scottish rascal looking for Ms. Right.

Although Ian’s nearly five centuries old, he looks and acts like a twenty-seven-year-old hunk. How can a dead man be so damn sexy? Could Mr. Wrong be Mr. Right? One forbidden kiss could lead to an eternity of passion—and all it takes is one moment under the mistletoe . . .

Toni had a very rewarding goal in life (to open up an orphanage for abandoned children) that she and her two closest friends were working years towards before vampires attacked and ruined everything. Now, Toni's best friend (and financial support) is in a mental ward and Toni finds herself in a reckless vampire job that could one day set everything right again ... or at least she hopes! If she can prevent herself from being tempted by the newly returned Scottish warrior, Ian, or accidentally revealing her plan of action in proving that vampires truly exist, she could set everything back to their original course. Yet, as things begin to heat up with Ian and the vampire society line between good & bad becomes more visible, Toni finds her future plans have changed whether she likes it or not.

For me, this was an okay book from the Love to Stake series - not one of my favorites and definitely not one of the worst. Thus, it was an overall so-so read. I wasn't that much of a fan of Toni, becasue she was either too tough or lacking from too little confidence for me to truly enjoy as a character. And, I couldn't escape the memory of Ian as a young boy as well - so sadly I was kind of ruined from the beginning with really losing myself in their budding relationship. It's always a joy though to catch up with other favorite characters from past books in the series and becasue of that I continue to follow the story and enjoy the ups and downs of each tale. Plus, the Christmas feel to this book really made for a festive read!

Likes: I'm also not that much of a fan of small talkative children in romance stories, but Constantine was quite adorable.

Dislikes: Ian's dating insecurities were somewhat boorish and vexing at times.