Nailed by Christine d’Ado

Nailed

by Christine d’Ado

Warning: This show contains scenes of sexual tension.

Hosting a new TV show is a fantasy-turned-reality for diva decorator Sophia Holbrook. But concentrating on color swatches is hard when all she can think of is her studly cohost, contractor Fynn Babineau. These two may clash over blueprints and budgets on-screen, but with the lust palpable between them, rumor has it they have been putting more than just their heads together behind the scenes…. What secrets will the cameras expose? Tune in tonight to find out.

This review is really difficult for me to write because I am finding it really hard to think of anything substantial to say about Nailed. I actually really enjoyed this book I found it sweet, sexy and humorous. I liked the story, writing and characters but beyond that there is not much for me to say about it.

I think the reason for that is because Christine D’abo has managed to tick all the boxes in order to make this an enjoyable novella. Nothing upset or annoyed me, I found it engaging and entertaining. But at the same time I didn’t fall so head over heels in love with it that I feel the need to shout about it to anyone who will listen.

There are some great characters and a nice romance to be found here. Sophia is smart and sassy with an entertaining inner voice that often made me laugh. Fynn is a real sweetheart that doesn’t have a bad bone in his body. The chemistry between them was awesome but the romance was an easy one. There was no drama, no will they won’t they. It was plain sailing for the both of them. The conflict came from other aspects of the story instead of the romance which made a nice change.

Nailed is a short, sweet and steamy romance that I really enjoyed.

3 stars

Find out more:

Goodreads, Amazon

WOW: East of Ecstcy by Laura Kaye

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming book releases that we’re eagerly anticipating. 
 
This weeks choice is:
East of Ecstasy by Laura Kaye
Annalise Fallston made peace with postponing her big-city dreams to care for her ill father, but lately she’s been filled with a restlessness not even her beloved painting dispels. Worse, the colors don’t speak to her as they always have, and all her efforts produce dark, foreboding images of a dangerous man and a terrifying future.

Devlin Eston, black-souled son of the evil Anemoi Eurus, is the only one who can thwart his father’s plan to overthrow the Supreme God of Wind and Storms. But first, Dev must master the unstable powers he’s been given. Distrusted and shunned by his own divine family, he never expected to find kindness and passion in the arms of a mortal.

But Devlin’s love puts Annalise in the path of a catastrophic storm, and in the final Armageddon showdown between the Anemoi and Eurus, sacrifices will be made, hearts broken, and lives changed forever…or lost.

What are you waiting for?

Confessions of a Chalet Girl by Lorraine Wilson

 

Confessions of a Chalet Girl

by lorraine Wilson

Ski Season book 1

Set in the exclusive Swiss ski resort of Verbier, the winter playground of the rich and famous, Confessions of a Chalet Girl is a fun and flirty contemporary romance novella from the fabulous Lorraine Wilson.

The slopes seriously start to heat up when chalet girl Holly is propositioned by her sexy new boss!

Published June 27th 2013 by Harper Impulse

Confessions of a Chalet Girl started out fun but quickly lost its way for me. I liked the concept, it was a nice idea but I was not completely convinced that the author knew what she wanted this to be. At times it was light hearted and funny, then it was angst and dramatic. It seemed a little all over the place.

The characters had the same problem especially Holly. One minute she was so shy she could barely talk right in front of Scott and the next she was acting all seductive. The first time the two have sex I found her to be completely out of character. She also over reacted a lot and was generally a little bit over the top.

Another thing was that nearly every other woman in the book was made out to be mean, over pruned air heads with vindictive personalities and loose morals. This made Holly seem like a virtuous angel but to be honest I am not sure she was all that much better.

I can’t say all that much about Scott because I didn’t really get to know him all that well. He seemed alright but I would have liked to know a little more about him. He kept going on about his past and family but I wanted more characters.

The romance was alright. Like the book it started off well but dissolved into insta-love. I wanted a little more chemistry and character between them but it wasn’t to be.

Confessions of a Chalet Girl was a short and fairly entertaining read but in the end it wasn’t for me.

2 stars

Find out more:

Goodreads, Amazon UK

Aiding the Enemy by Julie Rowe

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Aiding the Enemy

By Julie Rowe

War Girls book 3

German-occupied Brussels, Belgium
December 1915

Rose Culver is in grave danger. For months the Red Cross head nurse has been aiding Allied soldiers caught behind enemy lines, helping them flee into neutral Netherlands. It’s only a matter of time until she’s caught. Which makes it the wrong time to fall in love with a handsome German military doctor as devoted to the sanctity of human life as she is.

The Great War has caused Dr. Herman Geoff to question everything he once believed. He knows Rose has been hiding British soldiers in her hospital—he’s even treated some of them, refusing to go against his own Hippocratic oath. As a doctor, he admires Rose’s skill and conviction. As a man, he can no longer deny his attraction to her. But when Rose is arrested for treason, Herman must choose between love for her and duty to his country…

Published October 7th 2013 by Carina Press

I like war romances. The thought of two people finding love in a time of fear and danger really appeals to me so I was quite looking forward to reading this novella. Aiding the Enemy had an interesting premise and it was interesting enough but I couldn’t help feeling that there was wasted potential here.

This book is a short, fluffy romance that lacked some depth but for the most part it was fine and as a novella it ticked all the boxes. My problem with this book was that it could have been so much more. I would have really loved this as a full length historical romance novel, I think it is really what the story deserved. The fact that it is a story about a German Doctor and an English nurse who fall in love is enough to justify a longer length. On top of that there were so many other elements that really needed a little more space. It all felt a little condensed and rushed. A lot is pushed aside to get the romance in and a lot of the romance is underdeveloped to get the plot in. The romance also felt a little forced (again due to the length) and I failed to feel the chemistry between the characters.

The writing was of a good standard. Rowe has done a nice job with the descriptions and atmosphere of the story. She made the war time hospital sound horrific and some bits are definitely not for the faint hearted. The characters were alright. I liked both Rose and Herman but I didn’t love them. I found their voices to similar and I struggled to notice any cultural differences between them.

Aiding the Enemy is an entertaining enough novella that kept me interested but it had the potential to be a lot more.

3 stars

Find out more

Goodreads, Amazon UK, Author’s Website, Author’s Twitter

The Darkest Day by Britt Bury

The Darkest Day

by Britt Bury

Book one in the Immortal Heat series

Genre: Romance, Paranormal, Highland, dystopian, erotica, demons

Expected publication: July 3rd 2012 by Grand Central Publishing

I was provided with a copy of this book by the publisher for review

Izel Campbell was raised to believe she is an immortal Fionn with the magical skills of persuasion. But when she travels to Scotland to visit her ancestral home, Izel discovers that she is actually the world’s last living human. Forced to run for her life, Izel crosses paths with Kelvin Kerr, the Campbells’ greatest foe—and the most magnificent warrior she has ever seen.  A thousand-year-old battle chief of the Kerr clan, Kelvin lives only to avenge his father, who died at the hands of the bloody Campbells. Honor demands he kill the Campbell heir, but when he learns that the lovely Izel is both Campbell and human, Kelvin is torn between duty and desire . . .

Oh yes, Britt Bury, yes!

This is exactly what I have been looking for.  I have massive love for PNR (Paranormal romance) but nothing has really captured me since the early Black Dagger Brotherhood books.  Well finally something has.  I just loved this book.  It had everything; action, drama, humour and romance.  It was just great.

Ok, so what made this book so great? I will start with the idea.  I think Britt Bury is incredibly smart because she has taken the top three (or there about) romance sub-genres and somehow mixed them together.  This is a Highland novel, it is set in Scotland.  Our hero, Kelvin, is a Scottish clan warrior…but he is also something else.  Kelvin is a paranormal being, closely related to shape shifters (although his species doesn’t actually shift).  This novel might look and feel like a Highland novel but it is set in the modern world.  So it is a highland, PNR, urban fantasy novel…but wait, there’s more (stick with me here.) This modern world has no humans (almost) they all died out.  The world is full of paranormal beings but things are still somewhat derelict.  So to conclude The Darkest Day is a highland, PNR, Urban Fantasy, Dystopian novel.  Sounds a bit too much doesn’t it? Except for the fact that it works perfectly.  Bury has written this book so well that the joining of so many genres doesn’t distract from but enhances the reading experience.  This book is written in a way that is also utterly entrancing.  I struggled to put this book down.  It was engaging from beginning to end.  The prologue set the tone immediately and that atmosphere and intensity stayed with the book the whole way through.

Let’s move on to the characters.  Essentially there are only two characters in this book.  There are others who pop their heads in (I think/hope this was more for the next books in the series) but there are only two people who really matter in this book, Kelvin and Izel.

Izel is a great female lead.  She is funny, smart, sassy and just all round awesome.  I didn’t once find her irritating or weak.  She was not kick-ass or unemotional but she was no doormat either.  Kelvin (honestly if you could see what this guy looked like in my head you would faint) is just devastating.  If I met him I wouldn’t stand a chance.  He is strong, hard and tough.  He has responsibilities and obligations.  He at times probably comes across as a little scary.  He is rash, stubborn and infuriating.  But behind all the brutishness he is loving, gentle and fairly emotional.  When he loves he does it with all of his heart and he would do anything to protect that person.  Like Izel he was not once annoying.

The romance between Izel and Kelvin was just amazing.  I loved the growth of their relationship, from enemies, to annoyances, to lust then finally to love.  Sure, there are some bumps along the way but it was not done just for the sake of drama.  Most of the humour in this book came from the banter between them.  In the beginning the sparred verbally back and worth which gave the book a light-hearted feel but slowly that turned to something darker.  The tension and chemistry between them poured off of every page, it was fidget inducing brilliant.  It oozed from the characters and created bucket loads of sexual tension.

The Darkest Day proves that there is still some imagination in the romance genre.  It is by far the best PNR I have read in a while and I strongly recommend it.  I cannot wait for the next book in the series.

My rating 4 out of 5 stars

check out the links: Goodreads, Author’s website

Let me know what you think in the comments!

The Claimed by Caridad Pineiro

The Claimed

by Caridad Pineiro

Book two in The Sin Eaters series

Genre: Romance, paranormal, urban fantasy, erotica

Paperback, 368 pages.  Published May 1st 2012 by Grand Central Publishing.
I was provided with a copy of this book by the publisher for review
Victoria Johnson loves her life. She’s her own boss in a quaint beachside town, and has great friends who keep her grounded. If only they knew who she really is: an heiress to an ancient race who possesses astonishing superhuman powers. It’s Victoria’s duty to restore her clan of Light Hunters to their former glory by choosing the perfect mate. In Christopher Sombrosa, she just may have found him. Strong, smart, and successful, Christopher exudes a powerful energy. Their connection is sensual, irresistible-and forbidden.
A member of the Shadow Hunter clan, Christopher has defied his own father to lead his people away from affliction and violence. Yet he cannot ignore his duty to carry on his ancient bloodline. Stunningly beautiful and brimming with an erotic life force, Victoria is everything Christopher ever hoped for in a mate . . . but as a Light Hunter, she’s his mortal enemy. Together, they could unite their warring tribes. But murderous factions on both sides don’t want peace-and they’ll stop at nothing to keep light and darkness apart forever.
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The Claimed by Caridad Pineiro is the second book in the Sin Hunters series.  I have not read the first book (The Lost) but was still able to understand and follow this one.  It can be read as part of a series or as a stand-alone.

This Claimed started very slowly and not very much seemed to happen at the beginning.  It was readable but not terribly interesting.  From the half-way point and especially towards the end the book really picked up and become a lot more interesting.  There were a lot of action scenes which was great but at times it was hard to follow.  Most of the problems I had with not only the action scenes but the book as a whole were the use of aura and colours, something that is heavily used in this book.  It seemed to be mentioned in nearly every description and I struggled to picture all the aura’s, flashing lights and various other colourful things these ‘Hunters’ possess.  It did work at but was over used.

The characters were nice.  Victoria is smart, she has a lot of pressure put on her but she handles it well.  I really liked the tension between her and her parents (a storyline that was unfortunately dropped half way through) these moments really allowed you to see her strength.  Christopher was a nice guy and a good leaded.  The relationship between them is nice (I am a sucker for forbidden romances) it had all the right elements but I just never felt the chemistry between them.  What I liked was that they didn’t do anything stupid.  I never doubted their trust in each other and never though their relationship would fall apart.  It made a nice change as that is something we tend to see a lot in romance books.

I feel like I got to know Victoria really well.  There was a lot of effort put in to making her a well-rounded and complete character, but the same cannot be said for Christopher.  I felt like I didn’t know much about him at all (even though part of the book is told from his POV) without his half everything was not as intense as it could have been and I didn’t care about their relationship as much as I should have.

The Claimed is an interesting take on the PNR genre but somehow doesn’t have the explosiveness of other books out there.  It was good and entertaining enough but didn’t have that wow factor.  Despite that I will be checking out the first book in the series and the follow up to this one.

My rating: 3 out of 5 stars

check out the links: Goodreads, Amazon, AmazonUK, The Book Depository, Authors website

Let me know what you think in the comments.

Blazing Midsummer Nights by Leslie Kelly

Blazing Midsummer Nights

by Leslie Kelly

Genre: Romance, Erotica, contemporary.

Published May 22nd 2012 by Harlequin

*The publisher provided me with this book for review, via Netgalley*

Anything can happen on a magical midsummer’s eve Marketing director/workaholic Mimi Burdette has The Plan-work for her father and date his right-hand man. Problem is, there’s no heat in the relationship. Not even a spark. And worse still, Mimi is having some seriously sexy, panties-ablaze dreams-and the star looks a lot like  Xander McKinley, the hunky firefighter next door. Mimi’s dreams might be due to the strange tea she drank. Or the predictions from the fortune cookie she ate. Or they could be due to Xander’s smokin’ hotness. But whether it’s magic or just old-fashioned fireworks, Mimi is about to break all of the rules-including her own!

This was a very sweet and very quick read.  It has all the elements you want to see in a romance.  The characters are likable, the romance is sometimes hot and sometimes cute, it has funny moments, has a touch of a love triangle and just a little bit of magic…it is also a little weird in places which kind of comes with the territory.

At times it is not particularly realistic, but let’s be honest we don’t read these types of books for realism.

The main characters are good.  Xander is a fireman (need I say more.) I found him to be a little judgemental at the beginning but he snapped out of that pretty quickly.  He is effortlessly likeable and sensual.  Mimi has a lot of fight and spirit but sometimes she uses that in the wrong way, but like Xander she snaps out of it quickly.

The romance between them is nice, it is predictable but sweet.  There wasn’t any dragged out dramatics it all moved along nicely and was easy to get behind.

Blazing Midsummer Nights is one of those ‘nice’ books.  It is not going to annoy you, it is also not going to blow your mind.  It is a nice way to spend a few hours.  Sometimes you want to read something that you don’t have to think about.  That is what this book it.

My Rating 3 out of 5 stars

Check out the links: Goodreads, Amazon, AmazonUK, The Book Depository, Author Website.

Let me know what you think in the comments.