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Archive for May, 2012

Wicked Weekend (Pleasure Code #1) by Gillian Archer
* I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

Why did Lauren Vaughn introduce her sister to the man she herself was crazy about? Now Lauren is watching the happy couple at their combined bachelor/bachelorette party—while Lauren sits all alone at the bar. Until she spots a hot stranger with the telltale black handkerchief in his pocket: the signal for “seeks no-strings affair with sexy submissive.” Lauren can’t take her eyes off him. So when he comes over, she kicks her inner good girl to the curb and follows Jamie Forman to his room, where he makes her scream with pleasure all night long.

But Jamie is a complicated man. He can’t handle how desperately he wants her in his bed—and his life. It’s up to Lauren to teach him how to make all night last forever.

Lauren finds herself on a ski get away weekend for her sister’s bachelorette party.  She can’t believe she is there or that she actually introduced her crush to her “perfect” sister.  She is self-conscious of herself and has always felt that she is in her sister’s shadow, why wouldn’t he fall for her?  Lauren just wants to get away and have a little fun herself and she knows just the person provide it, the guy with the black handkerchief in his back pocket.

Lauren has been intrigued with the world of BDSM and wants to try it out.  She has done a lot of research on the subject and when she spots Jamie’s black handkerchief she can’t believe her luck.  However, she doesn’t seem to have a high impression of herself and doesn’t think he would want to “play” with her.  I loved that he saw her as beautiful no matter what the outside package looks like.

Jamie is intrigued by Lauren and wants to introduce her to his world.  He finds her sexy and beautiful and thinks her sister is shallow and just mean.  He knows that as her DOM he is going to have to take it slow with Lauren, until she becomes comfortable with the BDSM world. She doesn’t know exactly what she needs but Jamie knows that he is the one that can give her the sexual satisfaction that she has been lacking.

Lauren’s introduction into the BDSM world may have been slow but it was very sexy.  It seemed like he was more concerned about building her trust in him than truly being a DOM to her.  To me it felt like he was holding back some and maybe not being true to his self or nature.  However, that being said, I found the whole episode in the room extremely erotic, especially when he had her blindfolded.  I would love to see them together at the club and see how he truly is as a DOM.

The characters seemed to lack history or connection.  We know that Lauren lacks self-esteem and Jamie seems to help with that but we really don’t know much else about her.  Jamie has commitment issues but it seems that Lauren may be the one to make him re-think is stance on relationships.  Her sister is just mean and nasty and the fiancé’ is a sleaze.  I am glad that Lauren realized that she didn’t lose anything when he chose her sister.

Overall this was a fun read and I give Wicked Weekend 3½ Flaming Hearts.  

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Texas Iron by Jade Morgan
* I received a copy of this book from Sapphire Nights Books in exchange for an honest review*

War veteran Mack Harding has little experience with men, but it’s hard to miss the signals the new blacksmith is sending him. Rebuilding his family ranch takes up all of his time, and he honestly doesn’t think anybody would want to be with him, what with the scars on his face and the flashbacks that plague him. But Caleb leads him into a night of sensuality he’s never felt before.

Caleb Lucas isn’t really looking for a relationship, but he’s always ready for a tumble. And the sexy new client is certainly ringing all his bells. When an interlude in the barn leaves him wanting more, can he convince Mack to take a chance on his own brand of Texas Iron?

Mack may have returned home from War but he is still having problems dealing with his injuries.  He doesn’t think anyone can or will love him because of the scars on his body.  He just wants to work on his family’s ranch and be left alone, until the blacksmith makes a house call.

Caleb is always up for a little fun and the hunky cowboy is just his type.  He has heard rumors about Mack’s injuries but he finds him sexy as hell.  He wants him and though Mack seems shy, he seems interested in Caleb too.  When Mack experience one of his flashbacks, Caleb steps in and tries to help; little did he know it would be the opening he was looking for.

Caleb and Mack are so dang sexy together.  I love the fact that Caleb is comfortable in his own skin and knows what he wants.  He doesn’t write off Mack just because of the scars, in fact he thinks they make him even sexier.  He is attracted to Mack as soon as he sees him.  Mack admires Caleb’s rock hard body and would love to get his hands on it.

I also loved seeing the transformation in both men.  Even though this was a short story, both men seemed to change because of their encounter.  I think they were both looking for something but neither really realized what it was.  Caleb seems like a love ’em and leave ‘em type of guy but with Mack he seems to want more.  He also provides a comfort for Mack that he has never felt before.

My only complaint with this story is that it was too short.  The story leaves the reader wanting to know what happens between them and what the future holds.  I would love to see a longer story about them.  I give Texas Iron 3½ Flaming Hearts. 

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Forbidden Fantasies by Jodie Griffin
* I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

After fifteen years of marriage, Jessica Meyers’s sex life is, well, a little predictable. Her handsome husband turns her on, but missionary style once or twice a week? It just can’t compare to the hot new world she discovers in the pages of erotic romances. Her fantasies fuel the fire of her desire, adding a new spark to her and Alex’s lovemaking. But Jess is afraid to tell her husband what she really wants in bed—and her secrets start coming between them.

State trooper Alex Meyers is a master at uncovering the truth—except when it comes to his sweet, shy wife. She’s clearly keeping something from him. An affair? She wants out? When he finally confronts Jess, he’s shocked to learn she wants to turn her forbidden fantasies into nightly realities. But when he takes her to a unique B and B—Bondage and Breakfast—catering to couples and multiples, Alex is about to find out just how far he’ll go.

Jessica and Alex have been married for a long time.  Things have grown comfortable between them in all aspects of their lives, until she discovers erotic romances at her local bookstore.  Will they help spice up their love life or drive a wedge between them?

Jessica has discovered a whole new world in her erotic romance books but she feels the need to hide them from her husband.  She thinks there is something wrong with her because she wants to try out some of the things she has read about.  She feels like she is cheating on him and is beside herself.  She also feels guilty because she is imagining her husband taking charge or spanking her while they are making love.  She is afraid to tell her husband what is bothering her because she is thinks he will be repulsed by what she wants/needs.

Alex loves his wife very much but things have become routine between them.  Things change when his wife starts to become withdrawn and secretive.  While the grandparents have the kids, he sits down with Jessica to find out what has been bothering her.  His worst fear is that she is having an affair, she confirms it; in her mind she is cheating on him, even if it is just through her books and fantasies.

The whole conversation was endearing.  I felt so bad for Alex when she told him that she was cheating, it broke his heart.  It was like pulling teeth to get her to tell him what was wrong and what she wanted.  She had been raised to think that what she desired was dirty and wrong; all she could think was that he would be disgusted with her.  His reaction was priceless, he was shocked that his sweet wife wanted these things but he was also extremely turned on.

The thing I loved about this book is that it was so easy to understand where Jessica was coming from.  She was raised to believe that eroticism and BDSM were dirty and forbidden.  Many women today still believe that and live their wants and desires through their erotic romance novels.  They believe that they can live vicariously through their books.  Many husbands would be surprised to learn that their wives or girlfriends have these

Overall I really loved Forbidden Fantasies and give it 4 1/2  Flaming Hearts. 

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Specific Gravity (Brewing Passion) by Liz Crowe
* I received a copy of this book from Breathless Press in exchange for an honest review*

Trent and Lisa have a sizzling-hot physical relationship. Ever since they first met, it’s been a nonstop, hands-on fest. Perfect for him, he thinks, coming off a rancorous divorce. But lately, it feels like something more—and it terrifies him.

Lisa knows Trent is the man she wants but is too independent and stubborn to make him believe it. He has to figure it out on his own. Their shared love of craft beer and specific expertise in the business do make them a good match, and the sex? It’s off the charts.

“Specific gravity” is a crucial moment in the beer-brewing process—a turning point upon which successful outcomes depend. Lisa hopes Trent will go to the next level with her and isn’t about to force him, but the moment of truth has arrived. Can he admit his true feelings before it’s too late?

We first meet Trent and Lisa in The Rookie where he rides along with her as she makes service calls to the beer vendors.  The attraction between the two is instantaneous and burns hotter than Trent has experienced before.  He is recovering from a bad divorce is scared of the intensity of the feelings for Lisa.  If he ignores them, they will go away right?

Trent and Lisa are drawn to each other from the first time they meet.  She has no doubt that Trent is the one for her but he is too stubborn to see they are meant for each other.  She is a strong independent woman that knows what she wants and will even resort to jealously to get it.

Trent is gun shy where women are concerned.  He was burned by his ex-wife and he isn’t ready to trust another woman yet.  He is enjoying his time with Lisa, as long as it stays casual.  When he realizes that he has fallen in love with her, he decides the best way to make the feelings go away is to ignore her.  Not the smartest decision he has ever made.

This short story gives us another look at one of my favorite couples.  They are perfect for each other but they can’t seem to get on the same page.  Lisa wants a permanent relationship with Trent but he is still running away from long term commitments.  They are extremely hot together so you can’t help but hope they will work things out.  I loved the final scene outside the restaurant.  It was the perfect end to this short story.

I give Specific Gravity 3½ Flaming Hearts. 

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Fallen Angel (Club Burlesque #2) by Logan Belle
* I received a copy of this book from Kensington in exchange for an honest review*

By day, Mallory Dale works as a paralegal in a top Manhattan law firm. But by night, she’s known only as Moxie – a bombshell burlesque performer on the rise. Her dream is to become a top dancer at The Blue Angel – until her boyfriend, Alec, starts pushing her erotic boundaries. Can she handle a three-way with Violet Offender, a wildly uninhibited dominatrix – or should she hang up her feathers and silks and focus on her day job? That wouldn’t be too hard, considering her sexy boss at the firm unexpectedly ignites her deepest fantasies – and tempts her to find satisfaction away from her tempestuous relationship with Alec. But is she ready to play it safe and up the man she’s always loved – and the sweet thrill of life on the edge?

*This book is part of Kensington’s Aphrodishia line.  It contains some explicit sex scenes*

Mallory has been drawn to the world of burlesque ever since she was drug on stage by Bette Noir on her birthday.  Now dancing as Moxie, she is quickly becoming a favorite at The Blue Angel club.  However, she is having trouble balancing her two worlds and dreads the day her boss Gavin finds out her secret; she can’t afford to lose another job.

Mallory is a strong female that knows what she wants, now if she can just keep her worlds from crashing.  She enjoys her work as a paralegal and she is good at it but she also loves the thrill she gets while on stage performing.  She decides it’s time to make some changes in her life, will she choose a legal career or continue to dance as Moxie.

Alec and Mallory have an interesting relationship.  He wants them to be open and to try new things together, even include a third person into the equation.  Things don’t go as planned and he catches her and Violet Offender in a compromising position.  He begins questioning Mallory’s commitment to their relationship.

Mallory’s boss at the law firm, Gavin begins making passes at her confusing her even further.  She is attracted to him and things are on the rocks with Alec so she gives him a chance.  She never would’ve guessed that he liked everything “vanilla”.

The characters seem to jump right out of the pages at you.  They are all interesting and complex with extreme depth.  The book focuses on Alec and Mallory but the secondary characters add so much to the book like Violet Offender, Bette Noir, Justin and Martha Baxter and Billy Barton.  The characters are all larger than life and they made the book all the more interesting.

The world of burlesque is becoming more and more popular.  This book gives the reader a look inside a burlesque club, the dancers, costumes and the music.  Ever since I watched the movie Burlesque I fell in love with this world and this series was icing on the cake.

I started the series with this book.  There were a few times I was a little lost but overall it can be read as a stand alone.  I enjoyed this book so much that I bought the first one, Blue Angel.  Naked Angel continues the story and looks to be even better.  I loved this Fallen Angel and give it 4 Flaming Hearts.  

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His Treasure (Men of Valor #1) by Kiru Taye
* I received a copy of this book from Breathless Press in exchange for an honest review*

In a time when men rule their households with firm hands, can a quiet man tame his rebellious wife with persevering love?

Angry at being forced to marry a man not of her choosing, Adaku stubbornly shuns her new husband on their wedding night. However, she soon discovers there are worse things than giving in to a man whose touch awakens her deep desires. In a land where fruitfulness is celebrated, she could soon be labeled a barren woman.

Obinna knows there are several ways to tame a rebellious woman. Patience and perseverance are two of them. Adaku is his treasure and he would never let her go. When her fears push her into his arms, will he be able to convince her to stay with him forever by unleashing the passion within her?

Adaku is forced to marry Obinna against her will.  Her heart is with the prince and she refuses Obinna in all ways.  Obinna loves his wife and hopes to win her over.  He is kind to her and provides for her every need, except one, he will not touch her against her will.  As Adaku sees the happiness in her friends eyes when she reveals her pregnancy, she knows that something is missing in her life.  She wants her husband to look at her the way other men look at their wives.  Is it too late for her and Obinna to have a future, she hopes not.

Adaku is strong willed.  She always thought she was going to marry the prince but that didn’t work out as planned.  She is now married to a kind caring man that dotes on her.  As time progresses, she grows to care about him and dreams of having a real marriage with him but doesn’t know how to show him.  She is concerned that because of her stubbornness, she will be labeled as barren disgracing Obinna.  In the end she is willing to do whatever it takes to save her marriage.

Obinna is such a strong man.  He is kind and patient with Adaku, hoping that through his kindness she will come to love him as much as he loves her.  You feel empathy toward him because he’s living with a wife that doesn’t want to have an intimate relationship with him but also admiration because he refuses to force himself on Adaku and is waiting on her to come to him.  There are not many men that would allow this type of behavior from their wives.

This story drew me in from the very beginning.  It was interesting and different from anything I have read before.  The main characters are complex and strong.  There are a limited amount of secondary characters but each one is needed to advance the story.  I also loved getting a glimpse into the Nigerian village and their lifestyle.  It helps the reader understand the characters better I believe.

Overall I really liked this story and give His Treasure 3½ Flaming Hearts. 

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