Monthly Archives: February 2013

Review- Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Title: Pride And Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Jane Austen

Publisher: Waxkeep Pub., Dec 2012 edition

Source: Amazon Kindle, purchase

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 0

Description from amazon.com:

Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, first published in 1819, follows the story of Elizabeth Bennet and is a beautiful look into early 19th century English culture. This edition includes an active table of contents.

**

Can you believe this is my first reading of this the most famous Historical Romance ever written?  Well it certainly deserves all the accolades bestowed. (See…that last sentence even sounded Austen-ish)  I held off reading it for so long because..hey, I’ve seen the movie and the PBS shows multiple times, and I thought the written 19th Century language would be difficult to understand and frustrating to boot.  I am happy to report that neither of those difficulties existed.  Sure there are some language differences that made me scratch my head but never did they prove to be capable of befuddling me (more Austenish words). Also for those words totally beyond my vocabulary I had my trusty Kindle dictionary at hand to quickly look up the word.

Wickham, who is the villain, is certainly most charming and very likable.  So why does Lizzy fall for Darcy?  Darcy is arrogant and rude and Lizzy doesn’t like him (neither do we the readers).  So, what in the end makes him husband material?  It is simple,   he is thoughtful and steadfast.  He becomes the “Beta male” that women marry, not the “Alpha male” that they fantasize about and ultimately reject as being too much trouble to live with.

It is a most charming story of persons with pride (Lizzy) and those with prejudice (Darcy) and how they overcome those obstacles to find true love.  It gives us Regency Romance junkies a close look at the society of the early 19th century, its morality and customs.  This book can easily be read as a  romance but it is also a social satire.  I do recommend this Kindle edition as it was published without any content problems that I have heard other e-published editions experienced.

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Favorite Quote: Larry McMurtry

LonesomeDove

Robert DuVall and Tommy Lee Jones in the 1989 TV film, “Lonesome Dove”

“If you want one thing too much it’s likely to be a disappointment. The healthy way is to learn to like the everyday things, like soft beds and buttermilk—and feisty gentlemen.”

 Larry McMurtry, from the 1985 Pulitzer Prize winning novel,

LONESOME DOVE

Lonesome Dove book

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Review- The Taken by Vicki Pettersson

Title:  The Taken

The taken

Genre: Urban Fantasy/Supernatural Romance

Author: Vicki Pettersson

Publisher:

Source: Free for Review from Amazon Vine Program

Rating: 3

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from amazon.com:

Griffin Shaw used to be a PI, but that was back when gumshoes hoofed the streets . . . and he was still alive. Fifty years later, he’s an angel, but that doesn’t make him a saint. One small mistake has altered fate, and now he’s been dumped back onto the mortal mudflat to collect another soul—Katherine “Kit” Craig, a journalist whose latest investigation is about to get her clipped.

Bucking heavenly orders, Grif refuses to let the sable-haired siren come to harm. Besides, protecting her offers a chance to solve the mystery of his own unsolved murder—and dole out some overdue payback for the death of his beloved wife, Evie.

Joining forces, Kit and Grif’s search for answers leads beyond the blinding lights of the Strip into the dark heart of an evil conspiracy. But a ruthless killer determined to destroy them isn’t Grif’s biggest threat. His growing attraction to Kit could cost them both their lives, along with the answer to the haunting question of his long afterlife . . .

**

A hard-boiled detective meets a feisty, Rockabilly reporter and they set out to solve an old crime and a new crime.  It sounds like it ought to be a film starring Bogart and Bacall but there is a twist.  The detective is a fallen angel who falls for the reporter.  Sounds like disaster for both of them.

The premise intrigued me since I’m a big MALTESE FALCON fan.  However the pace of this book was so slow I ached my way through it.  Oh sure Ms. Pettersson can write prose and a plot but the characters were hard to wrap myself around.  Kit and her Rockabilly proclivities just didn’t jive.  I didn’t ever feel like I really knew her.  Why had she married Paul?  Why did she like dressing in 50’s glamour garb?  Grif was easier to understand, his agenda was clear even though he did his best to thwart his superiors on high.

The ending had the most exciting and page turning moments in the book but it didn’t outweigh the task of getting to it.  I found that I really didn’t care much if Grif and Kit got together or not. This was not a horrible book, it is probably better written than most, it was only okay.

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Review- Some Like It Wicked by Teresa Medeiros

Title: Some Like It Wicked

Some Like It Wicked

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Teresa Medeiros

Publisher: Avon, 2008

Source: purchase

Rating: 3

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from amazon.com:

Some like it dangerous . . .

Highland beauty Catriona Kincaid cares nothing for propriety—or even her own safety—when she storms the grounds of Newgate Prison. Determined to return to Scotland and restore her clan’s honor, she seeks the help of Sir Simon Wescott, a disgraced nobleman and notorious rogue. She is prepared to offer him both wealth and freedom, but she never dreams the wicked rake will be bold enough to demand a far more sensual prize.

Some like it seductive . . .

Simon is shocked to discover the tomboy he met long ago has blossomed into a headstrong temptress. Although he’s sworn off his dreams of becoming a hero, he can’t resist playing knight errant to Catriona’s damsel in distress. Both adventure and peril await them at her Highland home, where they will risk their lives to vanquish her enemies . . . and risk their hearts to discover a passion beyond their wildest dreams.

**

One of my first forays into T. Medeiros’ books. It kept me reading and page turning which is always a plus. I felt I had difficulty suspending my disbelief when it came to weather cold enough to snow and yet the heroine, Catriona, survives all night on a rock after falling into a stream. I need to like my heroines so the fact that she was so naive about what her clan might need, made me not appreciate her efforts as much as I might have. I liked the hero, Simon, he was a sympathetic rogue whose actions were understandable and

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Review- After Midnight by Teresa Medeiros

Title: After Midnight

After Midnight
Genre: Historical Romance
Author: Teresa Medeiros
Publisher: Avon, 2005
Source: purchase
Rating: 5
Sexy Rating: 5
Description from amazon.com:
“Our sister is marrying a vampire.”
When the ever practical Caroline Cabot first hears those words from the lips of her fanciful youngest sister, she accuses Portia of having a wild imagination.
But when she discovers their sister Vivienne is actually being courted by Adrian Kane, the mysterious viscount rumored to be a vampire, she decides to accept his invitation to a midnight supper and do some sleuthing of her own. To both her delight and her dismay, she soon finds herself falling under Kane’s bewitching spell.
After all, what’s a proper young lady to do when her sister’s suitor arouses more than just her suspicions?
**
It was a welcome discovery, finding historical vampire romances. This is one of my first novels of Teresa Medeiros and such a delightful one. I had a permanent smile throughout the entire book.

The heroine, Caroline, has come to London along with her younger sister Portia to meet Viscount Trevelyan who is courting their sister Vivienne. There are rumors that the viscount is a vampire. Since Caroline is the guardian of her sisters, she feels it is up to her to dispell or, perhaps, confirm these rumors once and for all. But will she fall under the spell of the charming viscount in her attemps at discovering the truth.

The witty reparte throughout the book is so smart and never silly, totally laugh inducing. There is a lovely romance or two or three and there is evil that threatens to bring everyone down. If you want a break from dark vampire stories then this is the book to send you off in a new direction.

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Review- Night Moves by Randy Wayne White

Title: Night Moves

Night Moves
Genre: Thriller
Author: Randy Wayne White
Publisher: Putnam, March 5, 2013
Source: Free for review from Amazon Vine Program
Rating: 4
Sexy Rating: 0
Description from amazon.com:
the twentieth Doc Ford novel—from the New York Times–bestselling author.

Both Doc Ford and his friend Tomlinson have buried secrets. Now one of those secrets is about to come alive—with a vengeance.

While trying to solve one of Florida’s most profound secrets, Doc Ford is the target of a murder attempt by someone who wants to make it look like an accident. Or is the target actually Tomlinson? Whatever the answer, the liveaboards and fishing guides at Dinkin’s Bay on Sanibel Island are becoming increasingly nervous—and wary—after a near-poisoning, a plane crash, and an explosion make it apparent that Ford and Tomlinson are dangerous companions.

What their small family of friends don’t know is that their secret pasts make it impossible for the two of them to go to the law for help. There is an assassin on the loose, and it is up to them to find the killer—before he (or she) finishes the job.
**
You are probably wondering why a romance reader/reviewer like me is reading a “guy’s book” like a Doc ford novel. Randy Wayne White is a local author and I like to keep up with what the locals are into. This one was a treat.

Yes, this is #20 in The R.W. White saga of Doc Ford, but it is #1 for this reader. I really liked this book. I liked the introduction to some Florida history and mystery. I felt the characterization was top notch. The writing well done. The plot(s)was admittedly a bit convoluted although satisfying in the end. There was mystery and action enough to keep me riveted to the story. Our hero, Doc Ford, is the kind of guy you want covering your back even though at times he thinks he didn’t think through all the possibilities. I look forward to reading more by this author. I hope to read more about the side characters, some who are mysterious and some who just beg us to delve into their histories.

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Review- Sail by James Patterson and Howard Roughan

Title: Sail

Sail
Genre: Thriller
Author: James Patterson and Howard Roughan
Publisher: Little, Brown & Co., 2008
Source: Library
Rating: 3
Sexy Rating: 4
Description from amazon.com:
Since the death of her husband, Anne Dunne and her three children have struggled in every way. In a last ditch effort to save the family, Anne plans an elaborate sailing vacation to bring everyone together once again. But only an hour out of port, everything is going wrong. The teenage daughter, Carrie, is planning to drown herself. The teenage son, Mark, is high on drugs and ten-year-old Ernie is nearly catatonic. This is the worst vacation ever.
Anne manages to pull things together bit by bit, but just as they begin feeling like a family again, something catastrophic happens. Survival may be the least of their concerns.

**
Did it keep me turning pages? You bet. Was it a good beach read? Yes. Do I recommend it? Well maybe. It was a pretty good read. I liked the two or three page chapters that bounced around to the different characters. Some were written in first person and some in third which did help to keep things straight. I liked that it had some surprises along the way but nothing was too surprising. Some things just astounded me. Such as Anne’s compound fracture being set with Marijuana as the sedative and how she was still so alert even with a raging fever. That was just one example I don’t want to say more for fear of mentioning spoilers. If you want a quick, easy read for the beach then this one will do.

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Review- A Kiss to Remember by Teresa Medeiros (Plus a Valentine Video)

Title:  A Kiss To Remember

A Kiss to Remember

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Teresa Medeiros

Publisher: Bantam Books, 2001

Source: Purchase

Rating: 3.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from amazon.com:

Laura Fairleigh needs a husband. If she is to keep a roof over her siblings’ heads, the prim rector’s daughter must wed by her twenty-first birthday. When she finds a mysterious stranger with the face of an angel and the body of Adonis unconscious in the forest and with no memory of his name or his past, she decides to claim him for her own. Little does she know that her fallen angel is really the devil in disguise.

Sterling Harlow, the notorious rakehell known as the “Devil of Devonbrooke,” awakens to the enchanting kiss of a lovely young woman who informs him he is her long-lost betrothed. With her sun-kissed cheeks and smattering of freckles, she looks every inch the innocent, but her curves possess a woman’s allure. When she assures him he is the perfect gentleman, he wonders if he’s lost his wits as well as his memory. He would have sworn he was not a man to be satisfied with mere kisses—especially from lips as sweet and luscious as Laura’s.As he attempts to uncover the truth before their wedding night, A Kiss To Remember ignites a passion neither of them will ever be able to forget….

**

An older Medeiros offering this was a good read with a few reservations.  I did enjoy the amnesia plot.  I thought it well done and rather believable.  The motives of the two protagonists were entirely understandable and delivered with Teresa Medeiros’ well crafted prose.  It got to be a bit over the top after the marriage and the yourng sister’s, Lottie, efforts at murder were not at all cute or funny.  She should have been locked up.  But that aside we are presented with a scrumptious hero, and a heroine who is taking advantage of a possibility dropped in her lap, or rather, in her forest.  She awakens the hero with a kiss that seals his fate.  How deliciously romantic!

Now for more deliciousness nothing beats a kiss , sound on please:

(sorry bout the ad, just click skip)

The complete list is below (in order!)
North and South 2004 – John/Margaret
Northanger Abbey 2007 – Henry/Catherine
Emma 2009  Knightley/Emma
Firelight 1997  Charles/Elizabeth
The Abduction Club 2002  Strang/Anne
Return to Cranford 2009  William/Peggy
Emma 1996  Knightley/Emma
Pride and Prejudice 2005  Darcy/Lizzy
Sense and Sensibility 2008  Edward/Elinor
Lost in Austen 2008  Darcy/Amanda
Little Dorrit 2008  Arthur/Amy
Pride and Prejudice 1995  Darcy/Lizzy

Music: Sixpence None the Richer-Kiss Me

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Review- How to deceive A Duke by Lecia Cornwall

Title:  How to Decieve a Duke

How to Deceive A Duke

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Lecia Cornwall

Publisher: Avon, 2012

Source: Kindle purchase, $1.99

Rating: 3

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from amazon.com:

When her stubborn sister runs off the night before her arranged marriage, Meg Lynton
hardly hesitates before donning the wedding veil and walking down the aisle herself. It’s the only way to save her family from sure destitution. By the time her wealthy groom discovers he has married the wrong sister, it will be too late to annul their vows. And too late for Meg to escape her wifely duty to a man reputed to be a devil in battle and the bedroom . . .

A bride is the last thing Nicholas Hartley, Duke of Temberlay, wants. Then he sees Meg and realizes that his wedding night will be a great pleasure indeed. But aside from the agreeable business of begetting an heir, Temberlay will never change his wicked ways for a wedding vow—until he discovers Meg’s deception, and decides to teach the scheming beauty how to be a proper duchess, kiss by devastating kiss . . .

**

There is almost too much misunderstanding, secrets,  flighty mother, scheming grandmother and idiotic men.  So I think that this book was just not for me.  I could not like many side characters and even the hero left a lot to be desired.  The only admirable character was Meg the heroine, and even she had her unrealistic moments.   The author can write well enough and in fact, I have enjoyed immensely another of her books go to the link for a review.

Secrets of a Proper Countess

https://ladeetdareads.wordpress.com/2012/08/20/review-secrets-of-a-proper-countess-by-lecia-cornwall/

 

 

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Review- Running Wild by Linda Howard & Linda Jones

Title: Running Wild

Running Wild

Genre: Contemporary Western Romantic Suspense

Author: Linda Howard & Linda Jones

Publisher: Ballantine, 2012

Source: purchase

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from amazon.com:

In book 1 of this steamy new contemporary Western romance series by two blockbuster authors, a cowboy and a woman on the run take a stand and fight for love.

Carlin Reed lives in fear, off the grid, moving from place to place. So Battle Ridge, Wyoming, a small town in the middle of nowhere, seems like a good place to lie low for a while. But after becoming cook and housekeeper to cattle rancher Zeke Decker, Carlin suspects that she’s made her first mistake. Rugged, sexy, and too distracting for his own good, Zeke is pure temptation mixed with something deep and primal that makes Carlin feel almost safe. Soon things are getting way too hot in the kitchen.

Zeke doesn’t challenge Carlin’s terms: cash, dead bolts, and no questions. It is easy to see that she’s a woman in trouble. Problem is, he’s so blindsided by his attraction to her he can’t think straight. Zeke tries to stay all business, no complications—but that game plan is sabotaged the second Carlin gets under his skin. And when her terrifying past follows her to the ranch, Carlin faces a heartbreaking choice: run away from the man she loves, or put him in the crosshairs of a madman.

**

I think I have read everything Linda Howard has written.  I truly feel that no one does romantic suspense better.  This latest book with accomplished co-author, Linda Jones is yet another example of their ability to keep me riveted and turning pages.  The story is a bit predictable and there did seem to be some filler but overall this was a good read.  There is a long, slow build up to the romance which heightens the sensual tension and the evil villain’s relentless pursuit makes your heart beat elevate in anxious tension.

 

 

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