Monday, February 19, 2018

Review: Her Forbidden Warrior (The Maclean Family Legacy Book 2) by Lucy King

Breaking up isn’t that hard to do…

Not when Cora Maclean’s cheating scumbag of an ex disappears with a ring that has been in her family for a century. It’s the putting her life back together afterwards that’s the problem. How hard can it possibly be to go to Spain, find her ex and persuade him to return the heirloom? Her plans definitely do not include rekindling a decade-old crush on a man who once broke her heart.

Former special forces operative turned businessman, Lucas Hart, has a job to do–one that now includes keeping reckless Cora Maclean out of danger. So what if she’s more gorgeous than he remembers? She once hurt him badly and that’s not something he’s inclined to forget. His sole aim is to finish the job while keeping her safe, and he has absolutely no intention of falling under her spell again. Besides, Cora has sworn off men for now.

Or has she?

My Review: 

With a one night stand, years ago, still haunting their memories, Cora Maclean and Lucas Hunt are brought back together in a race to retrieve a stolen family heirloom before the thief leaves the country.

When Cora interferes with Lucas’ investigation and is put in danger, he has to rush to Spain to protect her.  Cora not only wanted to get back the ring from her ex that he stole when they broke up, she also had a few choice words to say to him as well.  But she had no idea how dangerous situation she was in by going to see him until Lucas showed up at her hotel door.  Cora and Lucas never forgot the time they hooked up, but the reason Lucas never called her afterward was a total misunderstanding.  Now they have the chance to make up for lost time. 

I really enjoyed this story and liked seeing Cora and Lucas get back together even though it was only supposed to be a holiday fling.  The author did a good job describing the sights and sounds of Spain.  I just wish the part where Lucas was protecting Cora from the bad guys would have lasted a little longer.  It was pretty much over right after it started.  A little more suspense could have heated the story up even more.  But the romance part was good and kept me entertained.  This is the second book in a series, but can be read on its own.  

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Review: Bitter Truth (Bitter Root Mysteries #2) by C.J. Carmichael

In the isolated ranching community of Lost Trails, Montana, Lacy Stillman, a rich elderly rancher has died of a heart attack in her own bed. What could be more normal than that? As Zak Waller, dispatcher with the local Sheriff’s Office, joins the town in mourning the loss of the community matriarch, some disquieting information makes Zak wonder if Lacy’s death was not what it seemed.

Meanwhile, Zak's friend Tiff Masterson is overwhelmed by her mother’s escalating mental breakdown and her aunt’s stubborn denial of the problem. Tiff’s load becomes even heavier when family friend and local lawyer Justin Pittman looks to her for help with his own serious health issues.

When an unexpected connection is discovered between the Mastersons and the Pittmans, an old crime is uncovered with far reaching ramifications that will change everything. 

My Review:

There are a lot of secrets in the town of Lost Trails, Montana.  But when Lacy Stillman is discovered dead in her bed, Zak Waller, dispatcher for the local Sheriff’s Office, doesn’t believe Lacy died from natural causes like everyone is being told.  He sets out to discover the truth and finds a lot more than he expected.

Zak’s friend Tiff Masterson has returned to Lost Trails after a breakup with her boyfriend.  She is back living at home and helping her aunt take care of her mother.  But it seems someone is trying to force Tiff to leave town again.  A family secret is also revealed which surprises everyone in town.

I was fully engaged in this story as soon as I started reading it.  There were a lot of twists and turns that took me by surprise.  Even though this book can be read as a stand-alone, I would recommend reading Bitter Roots first.   It will give you more of a background on all of the characters.  If you enjoy a good mystery, I would recommend this book.


Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Review: Where the Wild Cherries Grow by Laura Madeleine

How far must you run to leave the past behind in order to find love?

In Where the Wild Cherries Grow by Laura Madeleine, it is 1919, and the end of the war has not brought peace for Emeline Vane. Lost in grief, she is suddenly alone at the heart of a depleted family. And just as everything seems to be slipping beyond her control, in a moment of desperation, she boards a train and runs away.

Her journey leads her to a tiny seaside village in the South of France. Taken in by café owner Maman and her twenty-year-old son, Emeline discovers a world completely new to her: of oranges, olives and wild herbs, the raw, rich tastes of the land. But soon secrets from home begin blowing in on the sea waves.

Fifty years later, Bill Perch, a young solicitor on his first case, finds Emeline’s diary, and begins to trace an anguished story of betrayal and love that will send him on a journey to discover the truth.

What really happened to Emeline all those years ago?

My Review:

A beautifully written tale about a man who is determined to find the truth no matter what it takes. 

Bill Perch is given the job of finding evidence about Emeline Vane’s death so her brother’s children can sell the family estate, Hallerton House.  But what Bill discovers leads him to believe Emeline may still be alive.  He becomes obsessed with the case and puts his personal life on the line to seek out the truth. 

This book had me totally captivated. It is written in both Bill and Emeline’s points of view and takes place during two different time periods.  At first I had a little trouble keeping them separate, but it didn’t take long for me to get the hang of the author’s writing style.  I almost wish the book was longer because I was so into it and had a hard time letting go of the story when it was over.   I was also surprised as it didn’t end the way I predicted.  The ending was the perfect for this story.

A special thank you going out to St. Martin's Press for allowing me to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Review: In The Line Of Fire (Pytheon Security #3) by Joss Wood

It just got personal…

As the Delta Force legend at Pytheon International, security expert Jett Smith-Jones has run out of leads in his effort to capture criminal mastermind, The Recruiter, the head of a notorious, international human trafficking and recruitment ring. The Recruiter remains one step ahead but when he threatens the principal players at Pytheon, including Dr Samantha Stone, the game is back on. Jett, while valiantly trying to ignore his visceral attraction to the fiery red head, is determined that she have the best protective detail Pytheon can provide. He is the best they have.

PhD Samantha Stone has been tasked to profile The Recruiter’s next move as a consultant of the psychology of criminal behavior. Too bad she can’t discern her attraction to the hard-eyed Delta Force legend. She avoids men who chase danger, but she can’t stop dreaming of falling into Jett’s very muscular arms. Unfortunately for Sam, The Recruiter isn’t the only criminal wanting a piece of her…

As they tighten the net around The Recruiter, the risk to Sam increases. Jett vows he will keep her safe, but who will protect his heart? And will Jett prove to pose the biggest danger to Sam of all?

My Review:

An action packed story.

With The Recruiter, an international criminal, still at large,   Jett Smith-Jones has his hands full.  But now, The Recruiter has taken an interest in one of Pytheon International’s own, Samantha “Sam” Stone.  It is up to Jett to protect Sam who is a profiler and working on the case of a serial killer.  When Sam’s life is also threatened by the killer, Jett has to pull double duty to keep Sam safe.

While hiding from the killers, Sam and Jett give into the attraction they have for each other.  Will their new found relationship jeopardize their safety?

This is a fantastic addition to the Pytheon Security series.  It is full of action and steamy intimate scenes.  The story kept me turning the pages anxious to see the outcome of each situation.  If you like romantic suspense, definitely add this book to your reading list.  And don’t forget about the first two books in the series.  The story of the Recruiter goes through the other books. 

Friday, February 2, 2018

Review: Undercover Princess (Castles of Dallas Book 1) by Lenora Worth

Undercover Princess .... a modern day fairy tale

Born to an Italian father and native Texas mother, Nico Lamon returns to Texas to launch an exclusive deal with the iconic Castle Department Store. Guilty for not being there when his father died, Nico has brought the House of Lamon back from the brink of bankruptcy. He devises a marketing gimmick that will benefit both the Castles and the House of Lamon: find the perfect woman to be the fashion line's spokesperson and to wear the gorgeous Valentine shoes he personally designed. When he spots Eleanor in the crowd, he won't stop until she's that woman. His woman.

Eleanor Castle returns to Castle Department Store undercover as head of security, but she's really back to reclaim her heritage and save both the store and her aging father. Eleanor has a plan to stop her evil stepmother from her devious doings and she won't stop until she knows her face is safe. But when Nico spots her at a gala and decides she's the one who should wear the shoes and that she's also the one he wants in his life, Eleanor has to reevaluate her undercover plan. Nico slips a red shoe on her foot and captures her heart. How can she fall for a prince of a man without exposing herself and her bruised heart? 

My Review:

“When you find true love, you’ll find your soulmate, someone you’ll know instinctively.  Or someone you’ve been waiting for all of your life.”

Eleanor Castle is retail royalty.  She is the real heir of Castle Department Stores, but she was run off by her wicked step-mother, Caron, fourteen years ago.  Using the name Ellie Sheridan, Eleanor is back in Dallas and working undercover as head of security at the Castle flagship store.  She has gone through a major transformation and even her best friend didn’t recognize her at first.  Her goal is to find out what is wrong with her father, bring down Caron and take back what is rightfully hers before the store ends up in bankruptcy.

Nico Lamon, from the Italian fashion house, House of Lamon, has teamed up with Castle promoting a new shoe that he has designed for a Valentine’s Day promotion.  The woman who can fit in them will become their new spokesperson.  When none of the women can wear them and Nico spots Ellie in the crowd, he insists she come try them on.  Even though the shoes fit her perfectly, Ellie doesn’t want any part of it.  She has her own plan and it doesn’t include being thrust into the spotlight with Nico.  How far will Nico go to get the woman he desires and will it affect Ellie’s plans of revenge? 

“Sometimes the heart knows what the head can’t figure out.”

This is the perfect start to a new series filled with lots of glitz and glamour and excitement.  I really connected with the characters.  This was a well-rounded book with a lot of details.  Even the secondary characters had me intrigued.  I can’t wait to read their stories.  I also liked that the story was set in Dallas and featured a couple familiar landmarks that I could easily visualize while reading.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Review: Valentine's at the Graff (Holiday at the Graff Book 4) by Sinclair Jayne

Marietta native Miranda Evans has yet to find her niche...until a small legacy allows her to open a gift boutique featuring local artists in the historic Graff hotel. As Valentine’s approaches, Miranda, who’s always left romance to the pages of a book, reaches out to involve the community in random acts of kindness to celebrate the month of love. Miranda has no need for hearts and flowers until the boy next door she dreamed about in high school arrives back in town more handsome, brooding, and out of reach than ever.

Orthopedic surgeon Whitman Telford blew out of his small, Montana hometown at eighteen without looking back. When he's told to fill in for a month at Marietta’s hospital before obtaining his dream job in LA, no is not an option. After getting sucked into the Valentine project along with half the town, Witt starts to wonder if he'll still be eager to see Marietta in his rearview mirror.

Opposites attract or so Miranda’s heard, but will she have the courage to test this theory and take a chance on romance when so much more than her heart is at stake?

My Review:

Valentine’s Day.  You either love it or hate it.  But for two special people, their lives are changed when they least expect it.

Miranda Evans just wanted a place in Marietta where she could fit in and be an important part of the town.  She finally found it when she opens a gift shop at the Graff Hotel just in time for Valentine’s Day.  While she was preparing her shop to open, she discovers her high school crush, Whitman Telford, has returned to town.  And when he talks to her, even though he doesn’t remember her, her memories and fantasies run wild.  But she keeps them to herself.

Witt didn’t want to be back in Marietta, but he was needed for a month to fill in for a doctor at the hospital.  He couldn’t escape the town fast enough when he finished school.  He never felt like he was part of his father’s family or part of the town.  He will do his job and then blow out of town like the wind to the new life he has planned in California.  But when he finds his step-mother, Sarah, at the hospital and learns his father is a hospital in Denver and Sarah needs Witt to look after his cousin Petal while she goes to be with her husband, Witt can’t say no. 

When Witt employs Miranda as Petal’s temporary nanny and moves her into his room at the hotel, things take an unexpected turn.  Witt will have to choose between the life he planned and the growing attraction he has for Miranda

This is a wonderful addition to the Holiday at the Graff series.  The characters felt real and their story was one that made me remember what new love was all about; the growing attraction, the struggles and confusions that we all feel when starting a new relationship.  Petal was a great addition to the story as well. 

Favorite quote:
“You’ve made me realize I need to reach out and grab my happy.  I don’t want any regrets.  I don’t want to wish I’d tried harder”.