Saturday, February 28, 2009
I met Lisa Marie Wilkinson through one of the various online romance communities that I am a member of. I was also very lucky to have one an Advanced Readers Copy of the novel to read and review before the release date in March 2009. I love historical romances because history is such a fascinating subject for me since all these horrifying yet amazing things happen in the past all over the world. Fire at Midnight is Lisa Marie Wilkinison's debut novel into the romance world and she delivers one suspense filled historical romance with such compelling characters that had me hooked from the first page. Lisa and I are working out a schedule for me to interview her here on the blog sometime in March as well as have her author guest blog about her novel Fire at Midnight so keep a look out for those two posts. Well now lets get down to the actual review of the novel.
It is 1703 in England, and Rachael Penrose is confined to Bedlam Insane Asylum in London after discovering her uncle Victor plans to kill her baby brother, James, in order to inherit the family fortune. Rachael and her brother James are the only family besides Victor who can claim the Penrose inheritance and that is something Victor wants. So Victor leads a gang of criminals and uses French privateer/smuggler Sebastién Falconer as the scapegoat for his crimes and he spreads the lie that Rachael informed the authorities of Falconer’s smuggling activities and so Sebastién now vows revenge on Rachael. Then a dangerously ill Rachael finally escapes from Bedlam, only to find shelter in Sebastién’s carriage and ends up in his care for the time being. It is a twist of fate that will alter both their lives forever because when she finds out who Sebastién really is and then believing she is in danger from Sebastién, Rachael meets up with his estranged twin brother. Jacques, Sebastién's Englishman twin brother, a customs officer intent on bringing him, Sebastién, the famous privateer to justice. But the real criminal is still at large, and Rachael and her baby brother are still in danger. Will she discover the truth and save both their lives…and her heart?
Well that is the question that had me flipping the pages to find the answer to as I was devouring this novel as fast as I could. The heroine Rachael Penrose seems like a nice and honest young woman who loves her baby brother and would do anything to keep him safe from harm. I thought she was a very strong young woman because she handled the responsibility of taking care of James seriously and she could have dropped everything to live her own life but she didn't. Even though her evil uncle was trying to kill both her and her brother she stayed in the country and tried to find a way to finally live in peace with James. The hero Sebastién Falconer is a privateer/smuggler from France who has a twin brother who he hates because he was raised by his mother in England and abandoned him in france with his paternal grandfather. Sebastién is a very complex Frenchman who has family issues that really affects his future relationship especially with Rachael who is one of those dreaded Englishwomen he doesn't like. Lisa Marie Wilkinson delievers an exciting, suspenseful and steamy novel full of intriguing lovers spats between Rachael and Sebastién. It was a book that I could hardly put down until I found out what was going to be happen between Sebastién and Rachael as well as the other secondary characters who made this novel so great to read. I'm so looking forward to any of Lisa Marie's future novels now that I've read her debut novel and loved it. I give this book 3.5 Open Books:
Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture:
FIRE AT MIDNIGHT $ 7.95 (Book 1)(376 Pages) It is 1703, and Rachael Penrose is confined to Bedlam Insane Asylum in London after discovering her uncle Victor plans to kill her brother in order to inherit the family fortune. Victor leads a gang of criminals and uses French privateer/smuggler Sebastién Falconer as the scapegoat for his crimes. When Victor spreads the lie that Rachael informed the authorities of Falconer’s smuggling activities Falconer vows revenge on the girl. A dangerously ill Rachael finally escapes from Bedlam, only to find shelter in Sebastién’s carriage and ends up in his care. It is a twist of fate that will alter both their lives forever. Believing she is in danger from Sebastién, Rachael meets up with his estranged twin brother Jacques, a customs officer intent on bringing his brother, the famous privateer to justice. But the real criminal is still at large, and she and her brother are still in danger. Will she discover the truth and save both their lives…and her heart?

Friday, February 27, 2009
I've read Jordan Summer's Harelquin Blaze novel called, Off Limits, and I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to read more of her work. Unfortunately she hasn't written anymore Harlequin Blaze novels but in November of 2008 she published her first book in her new series called Dead World. Red is the first book and it introduces us to a future world not far from now in which Gina "Red" Santiago lives in. Gina, who is mostly referred to as Red, is a member of IPTT, an elite tactical team, which is in charge of protecting the world. She’s devoted her life to apprehending the most monstrous criminals that prey on society—and now she’s after the worst one yet. Her grandfather is the commander of the IPTT and he is also the only family that Gina has left after her father's death and her mother and sisters murder. They are pretty close to one another and it is a loving relationship that I thought really shaped Gina's life up until now. On her own, with no backup, the trail to this recent horrible murder takes her to a dusty, tight-knit town on the fringes of society, where everyone’s a suspect. Gina has gets a vibe about this town that is not mapped out yet in her navcom system because it's just a tiny little town of no real importance.
Even the sexy sheriff, Morgan Hunter, isn’t telling her everything and the closer Gina comes to finding out the secret of this sleepy little town and its big, bad sheriff, the more scared she gets—because Gina’s beginning to realize that she has a secret too. A big scary secret that will change her life…and make her the killer’s next prey. I really love Gina in this novel because she reminds me a bit of J.D. Robb's own Eve Dallas from her IN DEATH series that I love so much. They are both hard-ass, stubborn and independent women who both have dangerous jobs that is mostly dominated by men. But that doesn't mean they can't take care of themselves because they make sure that others know they can't be bullied and pushed around because they are women. I also really loved all the suspense that was dripping from this novel when Gina finds the body of a woman who was eaten by what looks like animals but doesn't look like any animals that Gina's ever seen or heard of. Gina and Morgan's relationship develops nicely as they get to know each other but there are secrets between them that could crush their budding relationship. I think that Morgan is such a hot and sexy man who I would love to meet in person if he were actually real.
Gina and Morgan have a lot to work out between them but they make a good couple together because they are both strong and independent people who believe in justice. Also the sexual tension betwen them was so hot that I was fanning myself throughout the novel with my bookmark which really didn't do much. After reading this novel I was hooked and I'm anxiously awaiting for the next two book in the series called Scarlet, coming out in June 2009, and Crimson, which is coming out November 2009. This is one series that is going to be on my keeperself as well as my watch list for upcoming novels to look out for. You know what really got my attention when I finally picked this book up to read was the edges of the book were inked in red to match the title of the book. I really loved that because it kinda reminded me of how the old classic books from the past were all similar but with gold edges. I now wonder if the other books in the series will also have red edges just like the first book because I would totally love that. I give this book 4.5 Open Bookks
Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture: RED $ 6.99 (Book 1)(356 Pages)
What if Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf turned out to be the same person?
Gina Santiago is a member of an elite tactical team in charge of protecting the world. She’s devoted her life to apprehending the most heinous criminals that prey on society—and now she’s after the worst one yet. On her own, with no backup, the trail takes her to a dusty, tight-knit town on the fringes of society, where everyone’s a suspect. Even the sexy sheriff, Morgan Hunter, isn’t telling her everything. The closer Gina comes to finding out the secret of this sleepy little town and its big, bad sheriff, the more scared she gets—because Gina’s beginning to realize that she has a secret too. A secret that will change her life…and make her the killer’s prey.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Immortal Danger, In life, Maya Black was one tough cop. In death…well, once bitten, twice the bitch. Creatures of the night-be afraid. www.cynthiaeden.com

The BookEnter Today!Share ImageI have an advanced readers copy of this book, Immortal Dangers, that I will be reading and reviewing sometime in March before the release of the book in April 2009. So keep a look out for that review and if you want to help spread the word about the book and be entered in the contest just click on Enter Today and Share Image.

Well Karen Anders was interviewed on Tuesday and here is the direct link to the interview for anyone who would like to check it out. I had fun interviewing her about her writing processes and other stuff so it was great to have her guest blog about her March 2009 Harlequin Blaze novel. I also reviewed her novel Up Close and Dangerously Sexy which is the book she will be talking about today. Leave your comments with questions because Karen Anders will be stopping by on and off throughout the day to answer anyones comments with questions.

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Up Close and Dangerously Sexy marks a milestone for me. About four years ago, I decided that romantic suspense and action/adventure is where I wanted to take my writing. I write for Blaze and as most of you know, Blaze is Harlequin’s sexiest line. Therefore, I was unsure whether my editor would approve of such plotlines and characters for Blaze. Lo and behold, she told me to go for it. That came about because, at that time, we got a new senior editor, Brenda Chin and she had a strong vision for Blaze which four years later I think has come to fruition. Up Close was conceived when I was tasked by my editor to come up with a wrong bed book. Wrong bed books were made popular by the now discontinued Harlequin Temptation line. So when she asked me to do one for Blaze, I used a what if scenario—What if a kooky interior designer finds herself kidnapped out of her twin sister’s bed by a hunky undercover operative and then is asked to fill her sister’s secret agent shoes. Wrong bed, wrong sister, Oh, so right man! Writing Up Close occurred in an interesting time in my life. I had just bought my first single family home, moved into it, and my oldest daughter moved from Virginia to North Carolina to be closer to me. She brought with her a beautiful 9 month old boxer. To say that puppy was rambunctious is an understatement. Well, I have a seven year old cat and she’s mild, sweet, and loves her belly rubbed. What she didn’t love was the dog. Chaos ensued for the majority of the three months I had to write the book and the result was my daughter got her own place and moved out. By the time she and her dog moved out, I had only six weeks to write a 55,000 word book. To say I was a bit panicked is also an understatement. I don’t turn my books in late. I don’t think that’s professional. So, I got down to business and wrote the book in six weeks. The kicker is that I work a full-time job. I did have to take a few days off from my job to complete the manuscript, but the bottom line is it got done. I learned a lot from that experience. First, I learned that I could write through chaos. Second, my youngest daughter saved my life by being there to manage the dog and support me. And, third, I can do anything if I put my mind to it. So, Up Close is almost on the shelves and I’m so proud of my accomplishment. I hope that everyone who picks up the book gets as much enjoyment out of reading it as I got out of writing it. Up Close is the first book in my Undercover Lovers Miniseries. Don’t miss book #2 and #3—In Too Deep (working title) out in October 2009 and Wanted (working title) out in April 2010. I also have a sizzling summer anthology out in July 2009 titled Endless Summer with Julie Kenner and Jill Monroe and my story is titled, Surf’s Up. Visit my website for upcoming news, enter my contest for March, or sign up for my newsletter. Here’s to great reading in 2009! Thanks Phoebe for having me and for your part in supporting the romance industry and its authors! You’re the best.

Blurb of the novel:
With one of his top operatives out of commission, undercover agent (and total hotness) Drew Miller will enlist the assistance of interior designer Allie Carpenter—who will pose as her twin sister in order to bring down an arms dealer. Drew is granted clearance to bring Allie in by any means necessary…. Their mission, should they accept it, is complete deception…and absolute temptation! Here are links to Karen Anders website, MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads and her eHarlequin inside scoop article.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009
I received the advance copy of this novel, Up Close and Dangerously Sexy, in Manuscript format in the mail and so it was a tough for me to read a bunch of MS paper. So I stapled them into 4 sexions and started to read the novel, which soon got so good that I totally forgot that it wasn't an actual book I was holding. Yesterday I had Karen Ander's interviewed here on the blog and she wrote that this is the first of her Undercover Love Miniseries for Harlequin Blaze. So I was really excited to read and review this novel because first I love reading a good series and two Harlequin Blaze is a line of that I enjoy reading because they are such fun and blazingly hot reads. Allie thought she was giving her twin sister Callie's home a makeover for their birthday but it all gets turned around when her sister doesn't come home when she's supposed but a hot and sexy guy walks through the door. With one of his top operatives out of commission, undercover agent (and total hotness) Drew Miller will enlist the assistance of interior designer Allie Carpenter—who will pose as her twin sister in order to bring down an arms dealer. Allie is swept up into this whole different world that she never would have guessed her twin sister Callie lived and worked in. Drew is granted clearance to bring Allie in by any means necessary and their mission, should they accept it, is complete deception…and absolute temptation!
The hero, Drew, and the heroine, Allie, are such different people that its such a wonder how they met and started to fall in love with each other. Allis is such a wonderful character who was so easy to fall in love with and to understand. She is a wonderful and I think a very understanding and unselfish twin sister because if I were her and I learned what she did in this novel I don't think I would be brave enough to do what Allie did. Now Drew is one hot and dangerously sexy man who has many personal issues caused by his own childhood and the harst past experience in his last mission. Drew is also such a loveable character that I knew he would be good match for Allie. They both are opposites that attract one another and make it work for both of them to live a happily ever after life. As for the secondary characters in this story I really was intrigued with Allie's twin sister Callie who I know will get her own story told soon. She is the complete opposite of her sister Allie even though they are identical twins and she is in very deep in this undercover mission with the villian of the series called The Ghost. I can't wait to find out what is going to happen to her and her unknown love interest in her story that should be coming out sometime this year.
Allie's brother Max is an FBI agent and though he wasn't mentioned only a few times throughout the novel I also know he will end up getting his own love story told. He is a mystery to me and I really want to know his involvement with the villian The Ghost and I can't wait to also find out who is love interest will be too. Now there are the teammates and friends of Drews that were in this novel (Thad Michaels, Damian Frost, Leila and Jason Kyoto) that I really loved getting to know and I hope that Karen Anders ends up writing up each one a love story of their own for her Undercover Love Miniseries. I thought that they were all great characters who have their own personal issues that could be developed into fun and excitingly blazing Harlequin Blaze novels. After finishing Up Close and Dangerously Sexy I wanted more! I am now hooked to this miniseries because Karen Anders has delievered a suspenseful and blazing hot novel that I could not put down and almost got a paper cut I was turning the pages so fast. So I recommend you go out and buy this book while their on the stands because if you want to long they will be gone and then you'll be missing out on the start of a great miniseries in the Harlequin Blaze line. I give this book 4 Open Books:
Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture: UP CLOSE AND DANGEROUSLY SEXY $ 4.99 (Book 1)(216 Pages) With one of his top operatives out of commission, undercover agent (and total hotness) Drew Miller will enlist the assistance of interior designer Allie Carpenter—who will pose as her twin sister in order to bring down an arms dealer. Drew is granted clearance to bring Allie in by any means necessary…. Their mission, should they accept it, is complete deception…and absolute temptation!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Today I will be interviewing Harlequin Blaze romance author Karen Anders. She contacted me about scheduling an author interview, author guest blog as well as a book review of her upcoming release for Harlequin Blaze. I recently finished reading her upcoming March 2009 Harlequin Blaze novel called Up Close and Dangerously Sexy and will be posting my review for it tomorrow. I had fun reading it and I was so happy to have the opportunity to interview her as well as having her guest blogging this Thursday as well. I learned a lot about Karen's writing process and how she got into writing romance and I hope that you all have fun reading this interview. Leave your comments as well as questions to this post because Karen will be checking in throughout the day to answer them.


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Phoebe Jordan: When did you know that writing romance was going to be the thing that you would do with your life? Which author inspired you to start writing romance?


Karen Anders: I’m not sure that I’ve ever thought of it that way. I knew that I loved to read. It was and is still my greatest passion. Spinning out the stories I discovered I had in my head just came naturally and once I started, I didn’t want to stop. So I guess the first time I realized that this was my talent, my passion was when I got my first book, Jennifer’s Outlaw, published by Silhouette. The author that most influenced me is Nora Roberts. Her stories are so amazing. Of course, I wanted to be her when I grew up. But, now I understand who I am and what I enjoy writing.


Phoebe: Did you know what type of romance you wanted to write about or did you experiment with different genres before you chose the one that you felt was for you?


Karen: I discovered romance in my teens and fell in love with it. I read it in many genres: Historical: Shanna by Kathleen Woodiwiss, The Shadow and the Star by Laura Kinsale Science fiction: Star Commandos by P.M. Griffin, Startide Rising by David Brin Fantasy: The Forgotten Beasts of Eld by Patricia McKillip, Gandalara Series by Randall Garrett and Vicki Ann Heydron Gothic: Kirkland Revels by Victoria Holt, The Black Swan by Phyllis A. Whitney Suspense: A Coral Kissby Jayne Ann Krentz, Hot Ice by Nora Roberts With all these books I read, especially the gothic and suspense books, I discovered a taste for action/adventure and after looking in vain for what I wanted to read, I decided to start writing it myself. I was always interested in romance mixed with danger. So my first book was a historical about a young woman who goes into the desert and it was bad. I also found that researching a historical book just wasn’t my cup of tea. Then I discovered contemporaries. My first book was about 500 pages and got me the interest of an agent. From there I got published by Silhouette.


Phoebe: What was the first fiction you ever wrote? And do you still have it with you?


Karen: As I mentioned, the first book I ever wrote was about a young miss and a desert sheik that was inspired by the book my grandmother gave to me when I was sixteen, The Sheik. It took me ten years to finish that book. But, I’m afraid as my first attempt, it was quite bad. I destroyed that book at the end of the eighties and gave it a fitting burial.


Phoebe: How much research do you have to do for your novels and did it take you a long time to gather that research?


Karen: I do a lot of research on every aspect of my novels. First, I do up front research when I’m fleshing out an idea. I explore different avenues to make my story richer. Then as I’m writing the book, I do ongoing research to go into more depth and to make the story as real as possible.


Phoebe: How did you come up with the concepts for some of your upcoming novels?


Karen: Up Close and Dangerously Sexy starts my Undercover Lovers Miniseries. For the second book, I decided to create a brother for my twins. I sandwiched his book in between theirs. In this series I have a villain called The Ghost and he runs through all three books to tie them together.


Phoebe: Do you have a process of how you start to write your novels?


Karen: I’m a synopsis girl, so when I go to write my stories, I consult my synopsis. I open the synopsis with a scene that puts the reader right into the action. That’s where the story starts—and it’s the most interesting and thrilling part.


Phoebe: Which do you like best, writing a series or writing stand alone novels? How is writing each different for you?


Karen: I like writing both types of novels. A series has to be carefully thought out before writing. Since the books interact, I want to make sure that all my ducks are in a row and I have all the characters worked out. In a stand alone, I don’t have to do as much up front work.


Phoebe: What process did you have to go through to get your first book published and did it take you long?


Karen: To get my first book published, I pretty much just started sending it one at a time to agents. When I realized how long that was going to take, I started doing mass mailings. That worked out well for me because on my fourth try, I got an agent. He then sold it to Silhouette within a month or two. I will say that my first time out of the gate was blessed. I didn’t know how hard it was to get an agent and I didn’t know how hard it was then to get published. So ignorance is bliss as they say.


Phoebe: How did you feel when you finally saw your first published book came out and how do you feel about your other novels being published?


Karen: Seeing my first book in print with the beautiful cover that Silhouette did was a dream come true. I felt so satisfied, so validated. Other than the births of my two children, it was the most exciting thing that has ever happened to me.


Phoebe: How do you handle your writing schedule and your personal life without going insane?


Karen: That is a challenge as I work a full time job and do my writing on the side. It’s all about focus. I have a certain number of pages that I must do per week and I stay on track as much as I can. I juggle everything else. When I need support, my youngest daughter helps me out tremendously. I don’t know what I would do without her.


Phoebe: What do you do to relax after having spent a long while writing?


Karen: I watch TV or read. I especially love playing an online game called World of Warcraft. Its loads of fun.


Phoebe: Do you have any hobbies?


Karen: Yes, I paint in watercolors and Chinese brush paintings. I will eventually have stuff up for sale on my website in the future. As soon as I have some spare time in my writing schedule to paint.


Phoebe: Is there any advice that you would give to an aspiring romance writer that you wish someone had given you?


Karen: Study the craft and hone that craft every day. Read, attend workshops, online classes. Write everyday if you can manage it and find a good critique group. Don’t be discouraged and keep persisting.


Phoebe: Is there any writing tips, research tips, promotion and marketing tips that you would give to an aspiring romance writer that you wish someone had given you?


Karen: Writing tips: Learn how to write a good, thorough synopsis. Study goal, motivation and conflict and make sure that it’s in your story. Research tips: Don’t skimp here. Do thorough research on what you’re writing about. It adds realistic flavor to your character and your story. Promotion tips: See the blog that I did for Caren Johnson. Its chock full of suggestions, but mostly for category books. Marketing tips: Discover who you are within the industry. Brand yourself. Take a look at my new revamped website to see what I mean. I’ve branded myself as a romantic suspense author writing urban stories.


Phoebe: Now for a question that I have been meaning to ask an author. Do you have a favorite genre you like to read? Who is your favorite author(s)?


Karen: I love reading romantic suspense, action/adventure, and science fiction/fantasy. Some of my favorite authors are Karen Rose, Nora Roberts, Lisa Scottoline, Donna Kauffman, Amy J. Fetzer, Kim Harrison, Patty O’Shea, and Laurell K. Hamilton.


Monday, February 23, 2009
After reading Emily Bryan's Pleasuring the Pirate I become a fan of her work and was very looking forward to her next release. I was especially excited because this book though a stand alone is contected to her book Pleasuring the Pirate because Daisy Drake the second oldest of Gabriel Drake's nieces is the heroine of this novel. I thought Daisy was such a fun and awfully cute little girl with a sharp wit in the first book and I was so glad to get the chance to read about her love story. I was one of the lucky people to get this advanced readers copy of the novel Vexing the Viscount for my enjoyment as well as for me to review and spread the word to everyone I could. As children they’d sparred with play swords, which lead to her scarring his chin, and to him bracking her heart. Now, more than a decade later, the true battle was only beginning because Daisy Drake needed Lucian Beaumont, Viscount Rutland, the boy and now man who has always been in her thoughts since the day they met. Tired of being labeled “on the shelf,” Daisy craved adventure especially since Lucian held all the clues to a long-buried Roman treasure. Surely her desire to join his search had nothing to do with his dark curls and seductive Italian accent, yeah right! It was definitely Lucians dark, tall and handsome looks that had her searching him out the clues he held to a long-buried Roman treasure was just an incentive to get close to him after so long.
Too bad Lucian wanted no help from her—until she donned the disguise of an infamous French courtesan and promised to teach him all she knew about the pleasures of the bedchamber. Now that was the a twist that I had fun reading play out in this novel especially since I knew that sooner or later it was going to come out that Daisy and the French courtesan were one and the same. Of course, she only knew what had been written in naughty books but Daisy had always been a quick learner and though she was a bit hesitant at playing this part she couldn't resist getting intimate with Lucian. And night by naked night, they’d discover a treasure neither expected to find with one another especially since Lucian's father hated all the Drakes. Just like when I was reading Pleasuring the Pirate I could not but this book down for long because Daisy and Lucian kept me turning the pages trying to find out what crazy thing would happen next. After finishing up this book it really got me to thinking that Emily should really write up another book but this time she should write about the Darke twins who I thought were so cute in Pleasuring the Pirate. Also to have the youngest Drake niece Lily have her own love story as well because she was just adorable and I would love to see how she turned out as a young lady. Well I can only hope that Emily reads this and gets struck with inspiration on writing it out and getting them published soon. I give this book 3.5 Open Books:
Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture: VEXING THE VISCOUNT $ 6.99 (Book 2)(304 Pages) As children they’d sparred with play swords. She’d scarred his chin, and he broke her heart. Now, more than a decade later, the true battle was only beginning… Daisy Drake needed Lucian Beaumont, Viscount Rutland. Tired of being labeled “on the shelf,” she craved adventure. And Lucian held all the clues to a long-buried Roman treasure. Surely her desire to join his search had nothing to do with his dark curls and seductive Italian accent. Too bad Lucian wanted no help from her—until she donned the disguise of an infamous French courtesan and promised to teach him all she knew about the pleasures of the bedchamber. Of course, she only knew what had been written in naughty books. But Daisy had always been a quick learner. And night by naked night, they’d discover a treasure neither expected to find.

Sunday, February 22, 2009
Emily Bryan is a new historical romance author for me who I found through one of my many online romance communities and after reading her novel Pleasuring the Pirate I've become a fan of her work so I will be looking forward to reading more of her future novels. I was fortunate enough to get an autographed copy of this book from Emily Bryan herself with some other goodies as well. I read about the book on her website before I actually got the book and I was really excited when I finally got started reading the novel. All it took was a flick of the wrist and a deft touch of his sword point and Drake the Dragon bared her bound breasts. That is one of the scenes that starts this excitingly passionate novel and had me flipping the pages with excitement trying to find out more. Then with the heat of his hands along her skin, he bared her soul and all the wantonness Jacquelyn Wrenn had denied herself as a famous courtesan’s daughter. She has never felt this before but now all the desire she’d held in her heart while running Lord Gabriel Drake’s estate flooded through her at his touch and that begins our story of Jacquelyn and Gabriel's love story.
Not that she could let a bloody pirate know it that she was very attracted to him because he is a man she can never let herself fall in love with. Gabriel may have left his seafaring days behind, but his urge to plunder was stronger than ever and especially if it involved full, ripe lips and a warm, soft body that Jacquelyn certainly possed. Unfortunately, he needed Jacquelyn’s help, not her maidenhead, to learn how to behave properly toward a lady so he could marry and produce an heir. Their estate needs the money because they are very close to losing their home and the homes of the people who live and work for them as well. Yet Mistress Jack was the only woman Gabriel wanted, no matter what her heritage is and everyone knows that what a pirate wants a pirate takes. I really could not put this book down for long because the sexual tension between Jacquelyn and Gabriel had me flipping the pages so fast I almost got a paper cut trying to find out what would happen next for them.
Also the intrigue and a bit of suspense had me captivated throughout this novel especially since all the characters no matter if they be the hero and heroine or the secondary characters were fun to get to know. After finishing up this novel I got to wondering what would happen to Gabriel's four young nieces who are such darlings in this book that I thought they would need a story of their own. Well fortunately Emily's next release called Vexing the Viscount is technically a stand alone just like this novel but they are contected to one another and can you guess what that connections is? Well Vexing the Viscount is about Daisy Drake the second oldest of Gabriel's nieces and she is all grown up and falling in love with an Italian. I was lucky enough to get an advanced readers copy of it and will be getting to it right now so I can post my review of it next. I give this book 3.5 Open Books:
Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture:
PLEASURING THE PIRATE $ 6.99 (Book 1)(302 Pages)
BURIED TREASURE
All it took was a flick of the wrist. A deft touch of his sword point and Drake the Dragon bared her bound breasts. Then with the heat of his hands along her skin, he bared her soul. All the wantonness Jacquelyn had denied herself as a famous courtesan’s daughter, all the desire she’d held in her heart while running Lord Gabriel Drake’s estate flooded through her at his touch. Not that she could let a bloody pirate know it. Gabriel may have left his seafaring days behind, but his urge to plunder was stronger than ever. Especially if it involved full, ripe lips and a warm, soft body. Unfortunately, he needed Jacquelyn’s help, not her maidenhead, to learn how to behave properly toward a lady so he could marry and produce an heir. Yet Mistress Jack was the only woman he wanted, no matter what her heritage. And everyone knows what a pirate wants a pirate takes….

Saturday, February 21, 2009
I love the Silhouette Nocturne line because it is such a wonderful paranormal romance line of books by so many different authors. Denise Lynn is new to Nocturne as well as a new author for me and after reading her first Silhouette Nocturne novel. Druid Braeden Drake and his estranged wife, Alexia, must unite to prevent the evil force form unleashing a supreme reign of terror, when his family’s nemesis tries to find a book of Druidic-elder spells. Their family nemesis is named Nathan and he has been after all the Darke's for almost a thousand years with a single goal in mind. But having Alexia return to Dragon’s Lair brings along another set of troubles because not only does she make Braeden senseless with desire, she’s also being followed by the enemy. Though tragedy once drove them apart when they were married and living together, Alexia didn’t count on her return igniting so many powerful emotions between them after so long. But with each passing day that ends, revisiting their marriage bed is a temptation she finds more and more difficult to resist and then all too soon Alexia realizes her heart is as much at risk as her life.
Braeden and Alexia are a wonderful couple that I really enjoyed getting to know better in this novel. I'm happy that they got together again even though it was under such horrible circumstances that could be the end for them and their family. Braeden's family members are also very intriguing especially his aunt Danielle because she is the one who has a really big problem with Alexia and her marriage to her nephew Braeden. Denise Lynn has written a wonderfully exciting paranormal nocturne novel that I had the pleasure of reading. I had such fun reading this novel because the sexual tension and the passionate scenes between Braeden and Alexia were great. I will be looking out for any more of Denise Lynn's books especially if they are more about the Drake family because I think there could be more written about them. I give this book 3.5 Open Books:
Here is the description of the book from the back cover and pictures: DRAGON’S LAIR $ 5.25 (280 Pages)

DRUID SPELLS, DANGEROUS INTRUDERS AND A MYSERIOUS ESTRANGED HUSBAND…WAS HE FIEND OR SAVIOR?

When his family’s nemesis tries to find a book of Druidic-elder spells, Druid Braeden Drake and his estranged wife, Alexia, must unite to prevent the evil force form unleashing a supreme reign of terror. But having Alexia return to Dragon’s Lair brings along another set of troubles. For not only does she make him senseless with desire, she’s also being followed by the enemy. Though tragedy once drove them apart, Alexia didn’t count on her return igniting so many powerful emotions. But as each dark night descends, revisiting the marriage bed is a temptation she finds more and more difficult to resist. All too soon Alexia realizes her heart is as much at risk as her life…

Friday, February 20, 2009
Charlotte Hughes is a fairly new author to me since I've only just found out about her and her romance novels a couple of months ago. I was contacted through an e-mail from Charlotte Hughes online PR who wanted to do a link exchange. That then led to me receiving her two recent releases of her new Kate Holly Case series, which the first novel is called What Looks Like Crazy and the second novel is called Nutcase and it will be released on Tuesday, February 24th. I went to Charlotte's website when I received this e-mail to find out more about her novel What Looks Like Crazy. I read the book blurb and it really intrigued me so I went on to read the excerpt of the first chapter of the novel. By the time I got to the end of the excerpt I knew that I would really like this novel when I finally got it to read. Since I read and reviewed the first book, What Looks Like Crazy, got me very intrigued with Kate Holly and all the family, friends and patients in her life I was really excited to get into the second novel.
Ever since she blew up her own office with nitroglycerin (she was sure the patient was bluffing—until the vial exploded), psychologist Kate Holly has been one step away from going off her rocker. She is really having some issues all of her own that I wonder how a psychologist can treat patients but have problems of their own that they can't solve like when they treat their own patients. It doesn’t help that she’s still in love with her sexy firefighter ex-husband Jay who she still has hot monkey sexy with even though they are officially and legally divorced from each other. They both want to patch things up, but Kate has been using sex to avoid talking, and he wants to know if there is something she is not telling him. Well yes, there is something that Kate hasn't told him and that is about to get evicted from her office, and her best option may be to share space with her hot tub-loving ex-boyfriend, Dr. Thad Glazer. But I don't know if that's going to work out because even though they are on friendly terms with each other Kate and Thad have issues that keep them separate from each other for the better.
With her oddball patients, her meddling mother, Dixie, and her eccentric secretary, Mona, thrown into the mix—not to mention a rise of suspicious fires—will Kate put her life back together before she ends up in a padded cell of her own? Well it was great reading this novel to find out that answer to that last question and it was funny and exciting to read all the crazy happening to Kate. Charlotte Hughes has really hooked me and I don't know if I want to be unhooked by this amazingly funny and exhilarating series of novels. Finishing this novel only left me wanting more about Kate Holly and her sexy fireman hubby Jay as well as Mona, Thad, Trixie and Dixie. Especially since that ending was just teasing me to keep watch for when the next novel in the series, High Anxiety, will be released for me to buy and devour in a couple of hours. This is a book that I will highly recommend to everyone who loves to read romantic comedy novels because this was definitely a funny and charming novel. I give the book 4 Open Books:
4 Open Books
Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture:
NUTCASE by Charlotte Hughes $ 7.99 (Book 2)(274 Pages)
Nutcase by Charlotte Hughes
The life of a psychologist is enough to drive anyone nuts…
Ever since she blew up her own office with nitroglycerin (she was sure the patient was bluffing—until the vial exploded), psychologist Kate Holly has been one step away from going off her rocker. It doesn’t help that she’s still in love with her firefighter ex-husband. They both want to patch things up, but Kate has been using sex to avoid talking, and he wants to know; is there something she is not telling him? Well yes, there is. Kate is about to get evicted from her office, and her best option may be to share space with her hot tub-loving ex-boyfriend, Dr. Thad Glazer. With her oddball patients, her meddling mother, and her eccentric secretary thrown into the mix—not to mention a spate of suspicious fires—will Kate put her life back together before she ends up in a padded cell?

Thursday, February 19, 2009
Charlotte Hughes is a fairly new author to me since I've only just found out about her and her romance novels a couple of months ago. I was contacted through an e-mail from Charlotte Hughes online PR who wanted to do a link exchange. That then led to me receiving her tow recent releases of her new Kate Holly Case series, which the first novel is called What Looks Like Crazy and the second novel is called Nutcase and it will be released on Tuesday, February 24th. I went to Charlotte's website when I received this e-mail to find out more about her novel What Looks Like Crazy. I read the book blurb and it really intrigued me so I went on to read the excerpt of the first chapter of the novel. By the time I got to the end of the excerpt I knew that I would really like this novel when I finally got it to read.
I wasn't wrong either because I finished the novel in only 8 hours and I couldn't get any sleep until I finished the novel. Psychologist Kate Holly’s own life has become the stuff of intensive therapy and what a novel her life makes. Kate is a very likeable character and she makes a very good heroine in this novel because she is strong and independent and she puts up with her sometimes unstable patients along with her unusual family members. But she’s divorcing Jay, her gorgeous firefighter husband, who is perfect except for his tendency to put his life on the line. Now Kate and Jay's relationship is complex in this novel because I can see that even though they are getting a divorce they still love one another very much. Kate has very strong issues with Jay's firefighting job because of a trama that she suffered when she was 10 and her firefighter father died. But Kate knew about Jay's job as firefighter when she went into this marriage but it really didn't hit her until Jay was seriously hurt on the job. Jay tries to but doesn't really seem to understand Kate and her fear with his job so she left him and they've been separated for 6 months with a divorce proceeding that will be final soon.
Her eccentric secretary, Mona, lures in clients with promises of free manicures and those are some pretty funny scenes that I really enjoyed reading. Now Mona is one interesting character that really made me like her and it showed me that Kate is fortunate to have her to steady her after meeting and treating all her patients. Her junk-art-collecting mother and aunt, who are twins that still dress alike, have erected a vaguely sexual sculpture in her front yard as a gift to spice up her home. They are a hilarious pair that are really close to one another and are pretty weird and have made me wonder how normal Kate is after being raised by her mother Dixie and her twin Tixie helping her out throughout her life. And then there is her psychiatrist ex-boyfriend, Thad, who refers patients to her in return for information on the color of her panties. Now Thad is a really sleazy, self-centered jerk but for some reason he is a likeable character for me and he really compliments Kate in this novel.
I think Kate and Thad's relationship is funny because they say such outrageous things to each other and the patients that they seem to help out together are such unusual people. So Kate is now struggling to keep her sanity and it's just gets harder every day. Especially when Kate starts getting bombarded with mysterious threats that could be from just about any lunatic in Atlanta and Kate has treated them all. This novels was filled with one crazy patient after another that Kate was treating, which kept me on my toes with curiousity. And the only person who can help Kate is the one man who always makes her lose her mind—and her heart. Finishing this novel only left me wanting more about Kate Holly and her sexy fireman hubby Jay as well as Mona, Thad, Trixie and Dixie. I'm glad that I have Nutcase to devour now that I've finished What Looks Like Crazy. This is a book that I will highly recommend to everyone who loves to read romantic comedy novels because this was definitely a funny and charming novel. I give this book 4 Open Books:
4 Open Books
Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture:
WHAT LOOKS LIKE CRAZY $ 7.99 (Book 1)(279 Pages)
What Looks Like Crazy by Charlotte Hughes
Kate is trained to deal with everyone’s problems—except her own…
Psychologist Kate Holly’s own life has become the stuff of intensive therapy. She’s divorcing Jay, her gorgeous firefighter husband, who is perfect except for his tendency to put his life on the line. Her eccentric secretary lures in clients with promises of free manicures. Her junk-art-collecting mother and aunt have erected a vaguely sexual sculpture in her front yard. And her psychiatrist ex-boyfriend who refers patients to her in return for information on the color of her panties. Struggling to keep her sanity gets harder every day, especially when Kate starts getting bombarded with mysterious threats that could be from just about any lunatic in Atlanta. She’s treated them all. And the only person who can help Kate is the one man who always makes her lose her mind—and her heart…

Tuesday, February 17, 2009
I found out about Alyson Noël through the amazing website/blog called Free Book Friday, that is founded by author Jessica Brody. I'm so glad that I read and even heard the wonderful podcast interview of Jessica and Alyson talking about her first adult novel, Fly me to the Moon and two of her recent released young adult novels Saving Zoë and Cruel Summer. I also recommend that you all listen to it also so you can decide for yourselves if you agree with me about Alyson Noël's experience in writing and adult novel after only writing young adult novels. She recently released a new young adult novel called Evermore, which is the first book in her Immortals series and has hit the New York Times Bestseller list and even had gone into second printing because the first printing sold out. Well I was lucky enough to get to interview Alyson Noël right here on my blog today and you should watch out because soon I will be reviewing some of her novels both adult novel and young adult novels as well.


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Phoebe Jordan: When did you know that writing young adult was going to be the thing that you would do with your life? Which author inspired you to start writing young adult?


Alyson Noël: When I read Judy Blume’s, ARE YOU THERE GOD? IT’S ME, MARGARET, in sixth grade, my life my life was forever changed! I’d always been an avid reader, having a mom who introduced me to the magic of books early on, but Judy Blume’s were the first that I could directly really relate to—they felt like they were written for me and my friends and all that we were going through. And from the moment I closed the cover I knew I wanted to be a writer too.


Phoebe: Did you know what type of young adult novels you wanted to write about or did you experiment with different genres before you chose the one that you felt was for you?


Alyson: My debut novel, FAKING 19, was the first book I’d ever written. It started as a short story for a writing class I took years ago that I’d always planned to expand into a novel—though many years passed before I finally sat down and did that! I didn’t really try any other genres or stories—I wasn’t planning that far ahead. I didn’t even think of it as YA until I got an agent and it was ready to be sold!


Phoebe: What was the first fiction you ever wrote? And do you still have it with you?


Alyson: I used to write short stories for my high school AP English class that I’d turn in instead of the actual essays my teacher assigned (kids, don’t try this at home unless your teacher is Mr. Sawaya, then feel free!). And though I haven’t looked at them for years, I’ve got a feeling they’re packed away in a closet somewhere…


Phoebe: How much research do you have to do for your novels and does it take you a long time to gather that research?


Alyson: I love research—it’s one of my favorite things! How long it takes depends both on the book and how long I allow myself to procrastinate! Though with EVERMORE being a paranormal, it required far more research than any of my previous books. I spent the last two years reading books on psychics, near death experiences, ghosts—you name it. I even took a three-day psychic development seminar with world-renowned medium James Van Praagh, and underwent hypnosis in a past-life regression with best-selling author, Dr. Brian Weiss—both of which were completely fascinating experiences!


Phoebe: How did you come up with the concept for your latest young adult novel Evermore, which is part of your new Immortals series?


Alyson: Well, a few years ago I lost three people I loved in five horrible months, and just when the dust began to settle, my husband was diagnosed with leukemia and it felt like my entire world was crashing down. A year later, when he was in full remission, I wrote SAVING ZOE and CRUEL SUMMER, both of which explore the subject of grief and unavoidable change. But when it came time to write my next book, I realized I wasn’t finished exploring those themes though I wanted to do so in a much different way, by giving the story a paranormal twist and pushing the boundaries between life and death, and EVERMORE just came pouring out of me.


Phoebe: How many more novels to you have planned to write for your new Immortals series?


Alyson: I recently agreed to write three more books, bringing the series to a total of five! The next book, BLUE MOON, comes out on August 4th, 2009, and three more titles will follow in 2010.


Phoebe: You’ve written one adult novel called Fly Me to the Moon, do you plan to write any more adult novels in the future?


Alyson: I’d love to! Writing FLY ME TO THE MOON was an absolute blast! But at the moment, I’m keeping very busy with the YA stuff, so all my adult ideas are on the back burner for now.


Phoebe: Do you have a process of how you start to write your novels?


Alyson: First comes the idea, which I have to say is the most exciting part! That moment when a story begins to form from what was once nothing is pretty thrilling! Then comes the casting call where I determine which characters will take part, then I do a little or a lot of research (depending on the book), then I make a general plot outline of where I’ll start, where I want to end up, and how I might get there—and then I dive in! And even though my stories usually begin and end where I planned—the getting there part usually changes as the characters grow and evolve and decide for themselves.


Phoebe: Which do you like best, writing a series or writing stand alone novels? How is writing each different for you?


Alyson: The IMMORTALS is my first series and I’m really enjoying it! Mostly because I get to delay saying goodbye to the characters I’ve created. It may sound odd, but I become quite attached to them along the way, so it’s been fun getting to hang out with them a little longer than usual, and dream up new obstacles for them to face! Though it is different in that I have to keep detailed notes on the world, keeping it consistent from book to book is imperative, so I’ve got a notebook filled with all the little minutiae that crops up along the way.


Phoebe: What process did you have to go through to get your first book published and did it take you long?


Alyson: When people ask how long it took to write my first book, I usually say “14 years!” Which is pretty much the amount of time I procrastinated between initially writing my short story and expanding it into a book (FAKING 19). It wasn’t until the events of 9/11, when I was working as a flight attendant in NYC and figured a career change might be in order that I finally enrolled in some online writing classes where I worked on my revising my work. It was through that class that a fellow student led me to my then agent, and after revising the book one more time, he sold it several months later in a two-book deal to St. Martin’s Press. So, all in all around 2.5 years from seriously sitting down to work on it, to the first sell.


Phoebe: How did you feel when you finally saw your first published book came out and how do you feel about your other novels being published?


Alyson: The day FAKING 19 was released, my mom and I drove around to every bookstore in a 50 mile radius so I could gawk, giggle, sign copies, and otherwise act like a big, over excited, dork! But it was truly a dream come true moment for me so I don’t regret a second of it! These days when a book comes out, I still get really excited and hit my local stores to sign stock, but I try to do so with a little more decorum than before!


Phoebe: Do you ever get writers block? What do you do to get rid of it so you can get back to writing your amazing novels?


Alyson: I don’t get writer’s block—I refuse to even believe in it! But what really helps me when I do get “stuck” is remembering what Robert Mckee wrote in his amazing book STORY—or maybe he said it in his awesome three-day seminar—I can’t remember—anyway, he says that writer’s block occurs when you don’t know enough about the world you’re creating and that the only cure is to do more research. I’ve found this to be true—it works every time!


Phoebe: How do you handle your writing schedule and your personal life without going insane?


Alyson: Um, personal life? What exactly is that? Sadly, I’m not so great at balancing this. When I’m on deadline I don’t answer the phone or e-mails and barely even go outside—and, when I’m not on deadline I spend all my time playing catch up and hoping everyone will forgive my most recent disappearing act. Writing requires lots and lots of alone time—shutting out the external world so you can create your own. Though I do try to get most my work done during the day so I can spend my evenings with my husband. Except when I’m on deadline of course, then all bets are off!


Phoebe: What do you do to relax after having spent a long while writing?


Alyson: In the middle of a book, I like to enjoy a nice dinner with my husband, watch a little TV, then read before bed. If I’ve finished a book, a little vacation is my preferred way to unwind!


Phoebe: Do you have any hobbies?


Alyson: Travel is my number one hobby—domestic, abroad, doesn’t matter—I’ll go just about anywhere! And since my husband is a gourmet cook, eating runs a very close second!


Phoebe: Is there any advice that you would give to an aspiring writer that you wish someone had given you?


Alyson: I was so incredibly green and naïve when I started—I didn’t know anything! It wasn’t until my third book, LAGUNA COVE, was on the shelves that I started joining writer’s organizations and online groups, and that’s when I really started learning about the biz. But, at the same time, while I think it’s important to arm yourself with all the information you can, don’t get so overly caught up in “the rules” that you start to feel there’s only one way. For every statistic, there’s someone who did it differently, and nothing about my publishing journey went along the “prescribed path,” (I didn’t even know what that was!), which just proves there are always exceptions to every rule!


Phoebe: Is there any writing tips, research tips, promotion and marketing tips that you would give to an aspiring writer that you wish someone had given you?


Alyson: Writing tips: Read as much as you can, write as much as you can, and when you think your work is the best it can be, set it aside for a few weeks. You’ll be amazed at all the things you’ll want to change once you revisit it with fresh eyes! Promotion and marketing tips: Do only the things you enjoy and don’t worry about what everyone else is doing, because the truth is, most of the promotional things the average author can afford don’t make much of a difference in the big scheme of things. I usually make bookmarks and book trailers because I like to have them, do a few guest blogs and interviews because I feel like I’m visiting with friends, and then I cross my fingers, hope for the best, and get started on my next book!


Phoebe: Now for a question that I have been meaning to ask an author. Do you have a favorite genre you like to read? Who is your favorite author(s)?


Alyson: Young Adult is my favorite. Not just because I write it, but because the genre contains such unbelievable quality and is growing in such astounding ways, there is truly something for everyone on those shelves! But since I don’t read YA while I write YA (which makes for massive TBR piles!), I’ve mostly been reading mysteries and thrillers and a ton of non-fiction, research type books, which I actually find quite fascinating! And while I have too many favorite authors to ever pick just one, I will say that JD Salinger is a personal hero of mine! Thanks so much for the interview!!! Great questions!

Monday, February 16, 2009
I think Katie MacAlister is a really good writer and I've read almost all of her books and I especially like the Aisling Grey series books. She has 4 books out in that series and that is where the Silver Dragons series really started from because the main dragon of this novel was in a couple of her previous books. I think that everyone needs to at least give these books a try because they are funny and romantic. We've met the hero of this series because he was in the Aisling Gray series and I liked him even though he didn't make a lot of appearances. In the last novel and the first of the Silver Dragons series things were not looking good for May and Gabriel's budding relationship. Though May Northcott’s heart belongs to Gabriel Tauhou, the leader of the silver dragons, being stuck in Abaddon has significantly cooled down her love life—especially since a demon lord is trying to woo her. May and Gabriel are having a long distance relationship that is on a whole different level from normal and it's sad and frustrating to see them so unhappy. So far, May has resisted the demon's efforts, but it’s getting increasingly harder to thwart disaster because she really wants to get back to Gabriel but don't know they will ever get together.
So May is shocked when Gabriel encourages her to give in to the demon prince and become his constort so that she can come back to the human world again. But her fire-breathing boyfriend Gabriel has an ulterior motive for telling May to give in to the demon prince that he has been working out since she had to leave him in the last book. Since May was created in the mortal world, her surrender would give her master access to that world, where he would lose most of his powers. It looks as though May will have to barter to gain her freedom and fulfill her destiny by Gabriel’s side and we get to read about Aisling and Drake again in this novel. I totally wish that Katie would please think about going back to writing up Aisling novels again because I would really like to get back into her point of view. But will a deal with the devil make her life heaven or hell? That is where things get interesting and it isn't a road easily driven though because they have many problems in their way that they need to solve before they can live happily ever after. Now I'm anxiously waiting to know what is going to happen with May and Gabriel because this book left me wanting more. Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture:
UP IN SMOKE $ 7.99 (Book 2)(339 Pages)
HELL ON EARTH
Though May Northcott’s heart belongs to Gabriel Tauhou, the leader of the silver dragons, being stuck in Abaddon has significantly cooled down her love life—especially since a demon lord is trying to woo her. So far, May has resisted his efforts, but it’s getting increasingly harder to thwart disaster. So May is shocked when Gabriel encourages her to give in to the demon prince. But her fire-breathing boyfriend has an ulterior motive. Since May was created in the mortal world, her surrender would give her master access to that world, where he would lose most of his powers.
It looks as though May will have to barter to gain her freedom and fulfill her destiny by Gabriel’s side. But will a deal with the devil make her life heaven or hell?

Sunday, February 15, 2009
Gerry Bartlett is a new author for me that I stumbled upon on one of my many trips to the Barnes & Noble bookstore where I get all my books from. I have seen her first book of her Glory St. Claire Vampire Series but I never gave it a second look until recently. After reading the first three books in the series I knew I had to give the fourth and current book in the series, Real Vampires Don't Diet, a try because I love me some vampire paranormal romance novels. This fourth book was better than the first three novels because it introduced some more interesting characters that really spiced up the series for me. Gloriana St. Claire, curvy, stylish, undead, is spending New Year’s Eve alone and it’s all because her boyfriend, Jeremy Blade, is traipsing off to parts unknown to rescue his supposed daughter from the clutches of “dangerous radicals.” And if I was in Glory's situation I would be a bit upset because this supposed daughter is more than 100 years old and can take care of herself especially since her mother is a big b**ch that hates Glory.
Blade and Glory have one very complicated relationship because Glory wants to be the modern independent woman that she feels she deserves to be while Blade wants her to be a woman from the medievel times that can't live without him to protect her. So there relationship has been on and off since Glory was turned by Blade and they've had their own lives to deal with. Then just as Glory settles down to subject her telepathic shapeshifting dog, Valdez, to an evening of chick flicks, she gets a call from the bodyguard of rock star and newly turned vamp Israel “Ray” Caine. Ray was turned into a vamp in the last book and I absolutely love him even a bit more than I love Blade because he is modern and not the medievel male that Blade is. Ray is also Glory's favorite rock star and she has an attraction to him that conflicts with her love for Blade and that makes for a very interesting love triangle right there. So like most guests at a New Year’s party, Ray is well on his way to being drunk off his butt, despite the fact that alcohol and turned vampires don’t exactly mix. I don't know exactly why food and liquid, especially alcohol don't mix with turned vampires but that must really suck because I can't imagine not being able to eat or drink for centuries.
Glory speeds over to the party to save Ray from himself, and finds the rock star more depressed than drunk. And I can almost understand how he feels because he was turned without his knowledge or concent to be a vampire but now he has to adjust to becoming a vampire. To take his mind off his vamp issues, she asks him for a late-night boat ride and what kind of trouble could they possibly run into out in the middle of a lake late at night? Well that is when everything gets so interesting that I just had to keep reading until I found that answer and finished this book with one twist after another that kept me turning the pages. By the time I read the last paragraph in this book I knew that I really wanted to read the next book but that is going to be a long time waiting because Ms. Bartlett is still working on it and it might not be out until next year. Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture:
REAL VAMPIRES DON’T DIET $ 14.00 (Book 4)(344 Pages)
EVEN AFTER FOUR HUNDRED YEARS, DON’T BE SURPRISED IF YOUR BOYFRIEND STILL MANAGES TO DISAPPOINT YOU… • • • • • •
Gloriana St. Claire, curvy, stylish, undead, is spending New Year’s Eve alone. And it’s all because her boyfriend, Jeremy Blade, is traipsing off to parts unknown to rescue his supposed daughter from the clutches of “dangerous radicals.” Just as Glory settles down to subject her telepathic dog, Valdez, to an evening of chick flicks, she gets a call from the bodyguard of rock star and newly turned vamp Israel “Ray” Caine. Like most guests at a New Year’s party, Ray is well on his way to being drunk off his butt, despite the fact that alcohol and turned vampires don’t exactly mix. Glory speeds over to the party to save Ray from himself, and finds the rock star more depressed than drunk. To take his mind off his vamp issues, she asks him for a late-night boat ride. What kind of trouble could they possibly run into out in the middle of a lake late at night? Would you like a list?

Saturday, February 14, 2009
Rikki Donovan is another one of my guest blog reviewer for me here on the blog. She will be reviewing a novel by Marjorie M. Liu today that she had previously read but would like to recommend to readers of this blog. I hope that it won't be the first and last time Rikki can guest blog review here on Talk About My Favorite Authors so I can be able to post more reviews by Rikki here on the blog for all to enjoy and you can also visit her own blog to enjoy what she has to say.
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TIGER EYE by Marjorie M. Liu $ 6.99 (Book 1)(342 Pages)
Synopsis: An old woman at a market in China presses Dela into buying an old wooden box. When she opens the box in her hotel room an exotic looking man appears. Hari has been trapped inside the box for a long time. Hundreds of years ago a wizard cursed him, took away his ability to shapeshift and deposited him in the bottle. Only when the bottle is opened he comes out to do its owner's bidding. Dela is determined to help Hari break his curse and find his skin again, so he can shift once more. Review: "Tiger Eye" is the first book in the Dirk & Steele series. Dirk & Steele is an agency whose employees all have paranormal abilities. The guys working for it are extremely interesting characters who all get their own book in time. Dela is the sister of one of them and is constantly involved in the agency's work. Once she and Hari are back in the US it turns out that they not only have to deal with the wizard who cursed Hair, but also with another party who threatens to kill Dela. The story has various plot strings it evolves around—Hari's curse, the threats against Dela's life and Hari's and Dela's blooming love. The love story is a very good one. At first Hari is less than pleased to be summoned once more. Besides, he is full of hatred for the world in general. Well, who can blame him? Dela is not happy with the fact that a half naked hunk from another time is turning up in her room. However, soon enough they come to enjoy each other's company thoroughly. There is a lot of chemistry between them and they never stoop to stupid banter and misunderstandings—one of my pet peeves. Dela wants to help Hari to regain his freedom at whatever cost. Hari in turn is resolved to protect Dela from her attackers.
The plot made sense and the world Liu built is compelling—magic, shapeshifters, people with various psychic abilities, it's all there, but in a non-obtrusive way. I can't wait to read more about the other Dirk & Steele members.
Friday, February 13, 2009
All of you may have noticed that Rae Lori has been such a wonderful person to have helped me out with posted some of her reviews of books she's read and recommends to others. I've had the pleasure of interviewing her two months ago in December about her writing and her book A Kiss of Ashen Twilight, which is book 1 of her Ashen Twilight series. Well today I've just finished reading my ARC of the novel which Rae sent me an autographed print copy of for me to read and review. Haunted by dreams of a mysterious yet seductive figure that Ariya, the heroine, has yet to find out more about but then she awakens to a more dangerous nightmare. There is a vicious elemental creature out there and it has nearly wiping out her entire family except for her. Her parents have urged her to cross over into the mortal realm right before the elemental creature could get to her and there she is saved from another attack against strange shifter wolves. Her rescuer is Jace Archane, the hero, an immortal Nightwalker from the House of Blood within the Ashen Twilight House and he is also the very same man from her mysterious dreams that she has been having before.
I was a little confused about the House of Blood and all the other terms that they use in this book but I finally figured out what was going on as things started to become more clear. Now Jace and Ariya's attraction to each other is evident since the moment they met each other in that horrific fight when Ariya first came into the mortal realm. Yet Jace is reluctant to lower his guard, having spent lifetimes coming to terms with death's curse since he was turned into a Nightwalker because for some reason everyone he feeds from dies. This is something that only happens to him even though he doesn't mean to feed from mortals until their lives slip away His uncle Julian has tried to teach him to do what he does as he feeds and leaves the mortals living but forgetful of what happened but it hasn't helped Julian. But Ariya is not going let his fear of contact control their attraction for one another and despite his attempts at distance himself, she remains by his side in a desperate bid to stay safe and near to Jace. Now the elemental has followed her from her realm and into the mortal realm in hopes of draining her life force and powers.
This is one creature that is hard to destroy on one's own but they have to defeat it because it will not stop until it has the power and life force of Ariya. But when Shelley a woman of the House of Blood is murdered after leaving Jace's home the fight is brought to the doorstep of the Ashen Twilight House. Now the race is on to find out the origins of the elemental creature and stop the horrific killing spree because this elemental creature has even infected mortals with a disease that could kill the immortals of the Ashen Twilight House. As they dig deeper into the mystery, they will uncover a truth that ties the elemental's origins to a forgotten ally with plans to overthrow the Archane legacy and obtain Ariya's fairy blood fueling an immortal thirst for power. This is one novel that I could not put down because there was so much action and emotion going on between all the characters that held me captivated.
Ariya's people are such complex characters because they are also mythical creatures that the mortals have hyped up but I'm still not all sure about what the Aziza people are. I also especially liked that Jace and his uncle Julian are Scotsmen from the 1400s because they make for some very interesting characters. The other characters in this novel kept me very intrigued because there were many twists and turns that were taken that kept me on my toes to find out what would happen next. By the time I finished this novel I was pretty excited to get to read more about these amazing paranormal creatures that make up the Ashen Twilight series but unfortunately I will have to wake a couple of months before the next book will be available in a couple of months. Before I read this book I saw the sneak peak that Rae has one her website but that didn't compare to actually getting the whole story when you read this novel. I really recommend A Kiss of Ashen Twilight to all you paranormal romance readers out there and to everyone else who likes to read something new. Here is the description of the book from the back cover and picture:
A KISS OF ASHEN TWILIGHT by Rae Lori $ 5.50 (Book 1)(310 Pages in Paperpack)(284 Pages in e-Book)
Will it be love or death when fairy and vampire come together?
Haunted by dreams of a mysterious yet seductive figure, Ariya awakens to a more dangerous nightmare: a vicious elemental creature nearly wiping out her entire family outside her bedroom doors. Her parents urge her to cross over into the mortal realm and there she is saved from another attack against strange shifter wolves. Her rescuer is Jace Archane, an immortal Nightwalker from the House of Blood within the Ashen Twilight House. The very same man from her dreams. Jace and Ariya's attraction to each other is evident. Yet Jace is reluctant to lower his guard, having spent lifetimes coming to terms with death's curse in his Nightwalker form: everyone he feeds from dies. Ariya is undeterred by his fear of contact and despite his attempts at distance himself, she remains by his side in a desperate bid to stay safe and near to Jace. Now the elemental has followed her. When a woman of the House of Blood is murdered after leaving Jace's home the fight is brought to the doorstep of the Ashen Twilight House.
Now the race is on to find out the origins of the elemental creature and stop the horrific killing spree. As they dig deeper into the mystery, they will uncover a truth that ties the elemental's origins to a forgotten ally with plans to overthrow the Archane legacy and obtain Ariya's fairy blood fueling an immortal thirst for power.

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Phoebe Jordan
I'm a part-time aspiring romance novelist, book reviewer and blogger. I've always wanted to travel the world and learn everything I can about other countries. Learning the Italian language is one way of trying to make that dream come true. Traveling will help me with my writing because I'll be learning about the history of the U.S., Latin America, England, Italy, and Ireland, the countries I find so fascinating while reading the romance genre.
 
I read and review romance novels of almost every subgenre along with erotic romance, mystery, sci-fi/fantasy and young adult novels. You can find the reviews at my blogs, Talk About My Favorite Authors and Phoebe Jordan's Reviews. I’ve also started a live podcast show called TAMFA | Phoebe Jordan hosted on Blog Talk Radio. This show is dedicated to everything I love about romance and young adult novels. I love having romance and young adult authors live on my show to be interviewed and showcase their books.

I plan to write contemporary romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance, paranormal romance and young adult when I get my writing career started with help from Keta. I'm not sure what genre I'll write to begin with since I love to read so many different romance genres.
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