Monday, October 20, 2014


Back to school favorite:  pens or notebooks?

Oh my gosh, notebooks for sure. When I was a kid I used to love decorating my notebooks, usually with Elvis pics--most particularly, Elvis bubble gum cards. Recently, I reconnected on Facebook with a guy I went to school with (many, many years ago). He asked if I was still an Elvis fan. He said he remembered me always writing in notebooks covered with Elvis pics and asked if I was honing my writing skills. J As a matter of fact, I was!

Hiking or jumping in a pile of leaves?

Hmmmm….hiking. I’m kind of lazy, but I would enjoy a nice hike through lovely Autumn foliage. I’d really like to hike somewhere like Vermont. I’ve had a yen lately to visit that area of the U.S.

Halloween or Thanksgiving?

Halloween! I love the holiday. Spooky creatures and scary movies and all the cute little trick or treaters. I used to love dressing my kids up and taking them out on Halloween. Now, I like watching horror movies with them. (Confession, I also let them watch scary movies when they were small. They LOVED them and weren’t skittish or fearful. I guess I made them immune J)

Hot buttered rum or hot chocolate?

Yes, please!

Whose book (besides one of yours) are you most looking forward to reading?

That’s a tough one, since I simply do not have as much time as I would like for pleasure reading, but I would have to say probably Kendra Elliot. I’m intrigued by her Bone Secrets series.

Twitter: @jessrussellove

Sunday, October 19, 2014

BRUISED by Sean Michael

Publisher:               Totally Bound Publishing             
Published:               September 19, 2014        
ISBN:                     978 1 78430 241 2
Genre:                   BDSM, Gay
Book Format:          E-book
Obtained via:          Publisher
Reviewed by:          Helena Stone,

Rating:                   3       

Mechanic Johnson is ready to leave work and looking forward to a night out and one or more hot hook-ups when cowboy Billy walks into his garage. Billy appears to have walked straight out of Johnson’s fantasies into his life and it soon becomes clear the attraction is mutual.

Billy takes one look at Johnson and thinks he’s hit the jackpot. A dinner and a few drinks later he brings Johnson home with him. During the night the two men discover how compatible they are and awaken new and exciting desires in each other. When what started off as a one night event turns into something much longer, both men have to figure out how to organize their lives around each other.

While Billy and Johnson may come from different parts of the country, have different backgrounds and different careers, they soon discover they are more than compatible in all the ways that really matter.

My thoughts:

This is a sex driven story. If you’re not a huge fan of sex in your books, or only tolerate it in small doses, this is probably not the book for you. If, on the other hand, you enjoy hot sex with a light dusting of BDSM, combined with a relationship established on the basis of two men perfectly fulfilling each other’s needs, you’re going to love this book.

If I’m honest, my personal preference lies somewhere between those two extremes which means that while I enjoyed the very hot encounters between Billy and Johnson I would have liked to read a bit more about their relationship beside the physical aspect of it. As it is, the readers only get glimpses of Billy and Johnson’s lives. While the story makes it perfectly clear that Billy’s long hours as a defender mean the two men don’t spend nearly as much time together as they would like, the issue is mentioned and put aside in a sentence or two. Billy and Johnson don’t appear to talk and rarely seem to leave the house other than for work. Issues are dealt with in the bedroom. I really liked what I did see and learn about these two men and felt a bit short changed that I wasn’t given the opportunity to get to know them better.

 In fact the reader would be forgiven for thinking both men have super human powers when it comes to erections and orgasms. And, if I’m completely honest I have to say the sex between Billy and Johnson, while hot, became a bit repetitive after a while.

Having said all that I should also point out that this was a very easy and smooth read. While I may have had one or two issues with the story and the way it was told, that didn’t mean I ever even thought about not finishing the book. I enjoyed my time with Johnson and Billy. I just wish they had shown me a bit more of themselves.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Love Bites by Angela Knight

Publisher : Penguin
Date published : September 2014
ISBN : 9780425254912
Erotic/ adult romance
Reviewed by Gabrielle

Obtained via publisher
Rating : 4


Three stories make up this book. Each one revolves around vampires. I was more than excited to see a story  about the Mageverse amongst them. I may have zeroed in on Oath of Service but all three stories are great reads. I am a big fan of this Angela Knight and was not disappointed in this book. Each story holds its own and more.

OATH OF SERVICE brings readers a story involving Morgana  le Fay and Percival. I enjoyed watching the love blossom between these two.  We get to learn a  bit more about Morgana and why she does some of the things that she does. Percival is a good man and puts his all into everything that he does.

BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR is about three vampires and an evil wizard.  The three vampires set out to rescue a woman but when the evil wizard gets involved things quickly change. Decker, Amanda, and Beau soon find out that fantasies can come true.

THE BLOOD SLAVE gives us the story of a female mercenary and three vampires. Verica is human but soon to become more intimate with vampires than she ever thought she would. Blood is not the only thing that these men long for. Now this story is one hot read!

These fast paced stories are engaging and each one pulled me into its own world. Not only are these hot reads but they also have great storylines and are well written. I enjoyed my visits to each of these worlds. This collection of stories reminded me just why this author is on my auto buy list.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

TEASE by Sophie Jordan

Ivy Chronicles Book Two
William Morrow
May 27th, 2014
New Adult Contemporary Romance
Reviewed by Dawn (
Obtained by Publisher
3 Hearts

Emerson had three rules when finding a hook-up: Never let them see the real you, Never let your heart get engaged and finally, always leave them wanting more. Following those three rules, Emerson never had an issue finding a guy for a night. Until she meets Shaw and then all her rules fly out the window. He’s sexy as sin, bad to the bone and determined to see the ‘real’ Emerson. For the first time, Emerson is the one chasing after a guy, one who won’t settle for a one night stand or her practiced flirtations. What Shaw wants is the woman he knows is behind the flirty messages and teasing, the one who hides a pain that she thinks no one sees behind her party girl mask. Can Emerson find a way to let down her guard and let Shaw steal her heart while facing a past that has haunted her for years?

I have to say I didn’t read the first book, Foreplay, and I had a feeling if you didn’t read that one first, you might not have gotten as invested in the characters as others had. TEASE was one of those books that was either a hit or miss for me. At times I enjoyed the way Shaw made Emerson take the mask off and show him what she is behind it but other times, I just wanted to walk away and forget about all of Emerson’s drama. Sophie Jordan is a talented storyteller, no question there. The writing was tight and story moved smoothly. The sex scenes felt too over the top at times as well. I get that there are sparks between Emerson and Shaw but did they have to jump one another like rabbits? The author does a good job on dialogue and keeping the tension and angst ratchet up a notch in TEASE.

I had a hard time trying to rate this book after finishing it. Would it be better read after the first book? More than likely but overall, it was an okay read though with a few scenes that left a bad taste in my mouth and shaking my head in disbelief. The thing about this author is that she is consistent in keeping the story alive and well, flowing smoothly and to keep the reader entertained. TEASE is one of those ‘love ’em or hate it’ books and I, for one, am still thinking I need to pick up book one to see how these Ivy friends started out. I do have to say the title of the book captured the context of the story just perfectly. If you enjoy a fast paced story with characters that people can’t get enough of, then you might enjoy the Ivy Chronicles.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement

Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Publisher:  William Morrow
Published:   August 12, 2014
ISBN:  978-0062283160
Genre:   Contemporary, Women’s Fiction
Format:  Print
Obtained via:  Publisher  
Reviewed by name and email address:  Gina


Almost two decades ago Jack Keegan packed his bag and walked out on his wife, Caroline and young daughter, Daisy.  In the ensuing years he first ran from himself and then found something to run to.  Devastated by her husband’s abandonment Caroline did the best she could to raise Daisy—who turned out to be a pretty awesome young lady.  She excelled in school and athletics.  She was an unaffected golden girl who left Butternut Lake only for school.  Each summer she returned to work at her mom’s coffee shop, Pearl’s. 

This summer, however, is a summer of changes and reckonings.  Daisy is about to embark on her last year of college.  Carolina is on the verge of not only losing her daughter to adulthood, but losing her coffee shop and home because of a mortgage payment she simply cannot make.  And Jack, after years of sobriety, is on the verge of losing what he once threw away. 

When Jack returns to Butternut Lake it is initially at Daisy’s behest but it is also because he never stopped loving Caroline and never stopped hoping to have his family, the very family he threw away, back in his life.  Each member of the Keegan family has something precious to lose…but they each have something to gain if only they can allow the secrets of their pasts come to light. 

I thoroughly enjoyed Mary McNear’s debut novel, UP AT BUTTERNUT LAKE and couldn’t wait for book 2, BUTTERNUT SUMMER.  Ms. McNear does not disappoint.  There are myriad layers to BUTTERNUT SUMMER, making it a bit more complex than UP AT BUTTERNUT LAKE.  Building on the community and the ups, downs, secrets and chatter of a small town McNear tells dual stories of a mother and daughter coming to terms with the changes in their lives.  Some of those changes are foisted on them; others are changes they themselves seek.

Jack’s character is far more complex than that of an alcoholic to is back in town to make amends.  While he wants to, and tries step by step to make up for the past with Caroline, he learns perhaps the more valuable lesson of forgiving himself. 

BUTTERNUT SUMMER can be taken at face value as a wonderful contemporary fiction or the reader can dig deeper into the complexities of the characters and their lives.  Either way it is a wonderful read you do not want to miss.

Both UP AT BUTTERNUT LAKE and BUTTERNUT SUMMER can be read in any order as each is a stand-alone, but you don’t want to miss either one.  No matter what our favourite genre, this is one series any reader will enjoy.  I can’t wait for the next entry.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.