Home Forums Let’s Talk Romance Forum The AAR Seventeen in 17 Reading Challenge

Viewing 15 posts - 76 through 90 (of 94 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • Library addict library addict
    Participant
    Post count: 81

    Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay
    The Shift of the Tide by Jeffe Kennedy:
    I liked that the heroine was selfish and unlikable at times. Much of what we’d learned in the first book of the original series turned out to be not totally accurate. While it’s possible the author had always planned things as such, parts of it came across like she’d changed her mind. With each full-length book in this series I’ve often wished for the hero’s POV and that was true with this book as well. The hero had been an intriguing secondary character in earlier books and, much like the hero in the third book of the previous series, his total devotion to the heroine completely made the romance work. I also enjoyed the brief introduction of his family. The heroine had been tasked with a secret mission which took some unexpected turns. The pacing was slow in spots then the ending felt rushed, but overall an enjoyable read. The author has stated she decided to extend the series rather than try to tie up all of the loose ends in this book, so looking forward to more.

    Military Grade Mistletoe by Julie Miller: The teacher heroine and Marine hero had corresponded for a year before he was severely injured. The heroine had a stalker but though she’d reported some incidents to the principal she hadn’t yet involved the police. The suspense plot was run of the mill and the heroine often acted unwisely solely so she’d be in danger for plot purposes. The hero was suffering from PTSD but—miracle of miracles—was getting professional counseling. After an inauspicious start their romance ultimately worked for me.

    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay: 10 down, 7 to go…
    • The 20th Century Challenge: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler): completed!
    • The Breakfast Cereal Challenge: completed!
    • The Cocktail Challenge: completed!
    • Seventeen Magazine(s)! Challenge: completed!
    • The Alphabet Challenge Variation: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Replay: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Novellas: completed!
    Sandlynn Sandlynn
    Participant
    Post count: 39

    Continuing with the Genre Challenge:

    Read a Sports Romance

    For this category, I picked up a book from my pile that I obtained as an uncorrected galley, probably at the RT Convention last April. Hooked by Brenda Rothert was published in 2016 as an e-read and is about 215 pages long.

    This story, set in modern day Chicago, focuses on a mid-20’s college student who works several jobs to get herself through school, studying business. One of her jobs involves being a maid at an exclusive hotel. That’s where our heroine, Miranda Carr, meets Jake Birch a star player for Chicago’s hockey team. He’s staying in a suite at the hotel for several weeks while his condo is being renovated, and just by chance, Miranda is assigned to clean his rooms. Jake is immediately attracted to Miranda and her disinterest in him as a rich sports star and celebrity is refreshing. As for Miranda, she can’t deny Jake’s good looks and magnetism, but she’s been burned by a former boyfriend who cheated and she’s well aware of Jake’s reputation as a player, in more than one meaning of the word. Despite that, the two do begin to grow closer and peel away all the barriers each has built up to keep from having a relationship. The only problem is, both are not being entirely open about themselves, especially Jake who is estranged from his family and has become unwillingly involved with another woman who won’t take no for an answer.

    I enjoyed this story very much. It was a pretty straightforward romance with believable complications, although I found Jake’s unwillingly involvement with the hockey team owner’s daughter a little over the top. Still Jake and Miranda’s growing romance was very sweet. I didn’t quite believe that he wouldn’t have “closed the deal” with Miranda sooner but once Jake and Miranda do make love, their intimacy is very nice. I would give this story a B/B+ and would certainly read this author again.

    *****


    The Cocktail Challenge – 10 down – complete

    Alphabet Challenge – 10 down (A, B, C, G, H, J, K, M, P, & Q) – complete

    Genre Challenge – 7 down, 3 to go

    Library addict library addict
    Participant
    Post count: 81

    Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay
    Caught in Amber by Cathy Pegau:
    The heroine was a former addict. The hero was an agent with the colonial mining authority. He wanted to use the heroine’s connection to the planet’s main drug kingpin to rescue his sister. The each had their own agenda but from the first began to care about the other. The character of the hero’s sister was very underdeveloped. The heroine totally made the book. I liked the hero, but it often felt more emphasis was given to the heroine’s prior relationship with the book’s main villain than the romance between the h/h. A lot of page time was dedicated to the setup of their unofficial sting then the ending felt super rushed and a few questions were unresolved. Overall an enjoyable story. I just wish we’d had more page time with the h/h together.

    The Fated Stars by Veronica Scott: The hero had been kidnapped four years prior to the start of the story and was being forced to perform as a fortune teller at a low-end carnival. I adored the ex-special forces heroine; her character shined throughout the book. The plot started as a simple rescue op then morphed into something else. There were some intriguing twists and it was nice to have some closure to the overarching plot of the past several books. However there was a subplot introduced in the second half that went nowhere, the conclusion to the main plot ended up being anti-climactic, and there were a few loose ends. An uneven read with likeable characters.

    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay: 12 down, 5 to go…
    • The 20th Century Challenge: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler): completed!
    • The Breakfast Cereal Challenge: completed!
    • The Cocktail Challenge: completed!
    • Seventeen Magazine(s)! Challenge: completed!
    • The Alphabet Challenge Variation: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Replay: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Novellas: completed!
    Sandlynn Sandlynn
    Participant
    Post count: 39

    Continuing with the Genre Challenge:

    Read a Paranormal Romance

    For this category, I was helped by my romance book group. They decided to read Kresley Cole’s A Hunger Like No Other published in 2006 which, to be honest, is not my normal reading preference.

    This story is set in our 2006 world but features exclusively other-worldly characters: werewolves, valkyries, vampires, witches, demons, etc. These groups, who have lived among us for centuries, are bitter rivals who, on a regular basis, have major confrontations with each other to determine who is top dog. Despite this, they do form alliances, engage in romantic relationships, and even produce offspring. Speaking of that, our heroine (Emma), a “young” 70 year old half vampire/half valkyrie who lives with her valkyrie “aunts’ in protected seclusion, ends up identified by her fated mate — the King of the Werewolves — while she ventures off on her first, solo trip to discover the story of her parents unusual pairing. Our hero (Lachlain), the werewolf who is hundreds of years old, has been held in torturous captivity by the King of the Vampires for over a century. He escapes when he scents his Queen and proceeds to try and “convince” her to join with him as his fated mate.

    I read this book as something very other, very unreal, but many of my book group members were bothered by the hero’s actions in trying to restrain and claim the heroine. He lied, was very forceful, and would not take no for an answer. In this current 2017 climate, with women in real life coming out to reveal sexual assaults and abuse by powerful men, this bothered many of my fellow book group members who were very affected by the headlines we’ve been bombarded with daily. My problems with the book were more about my entertainment preferences. I am not a big fan of these type of over-the-top paranormals, i.e., not just a little witchery or time travel or ESP, but violent confrontations between vampires, wolves, demons, etc. with little interaction with the real world. Not my thing. Plus, I felt a little bit like I was dropped into the middle of the plot. I later learned that there was a novella which preceded this first book. Still, the world building was definitely very good and effective. I think I would give this a B+.

    *****

    The Cocktail Challenge – 10 down – complete

    Alphabet Challenge – 10 down (A, B, C, G, H, J, K, M, P, & Q) – complete
    
Genre Challenge – 8 down, 2 to go

    Library addict library addict
    Participant
    Post count: 81

    Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay
    Cherish Hard by Nalini Singh:
    This was the story of how the hero from Rock Hard’s next youngest brother and sister-in-law met and fell in love. The h/h each had baggage which was dealt with in realistic and not always predictable ways. At times they each allowed their expectations and preconceptions to overshadow things, but then acted like grown-ups and had actual conversations before allowing their relationship to derail. I liked the hero, but it was the heroine who really made the book shine. Overall a fun romance. I know the series will be about T-Rex’s brothers, but I hope we get the story of this heroine’s BFF and the hero’s friend.

    Twisted Truths by Rebecca Zanetti: The hero had abandoned the heroine “for her own safety” before the start of this spin-off series and I had looked forward to their reunion romance when I read the other two books. I liked both characters and they eventually addressed his earlier actions, but his my-way-or-the-highway attitude grew old quickly and the heroine remained too passive throughout the story so their romance ultimately fell flat for me. It seemed odd the oh-so-smart hero did not suspect the villains would go after a certain character. The main villain and her cronies remained OTT proverbial mustache-twirlers. While it was nice to have closure after seven books, they were all ultimately too easily dispatched. I enjoyed the interaction between the brothers as well as the short cameos with the brothers from the first series and their spouses. I really enjoyed the secondary romance and wish we’d had much more of it. I also wish we’d had more page time with the heroine’s aunts. There were numerous loose ends to tie up with the story which didn’t always gel with the additional kidnapping plot so parts felt like a lot of build up with little payoff. There were parts I enjoyed, but overall an uneven read.

    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay: 14 down, 3 to go…
    • The 20th Century Challenge: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler): completed!
    • The Breakfast Cereal Challenge: completed!
    • The Cocktail Challenge: completed!
    • Seventeen Magazine(s)! Challenge: completed!
    • The Alphabet Challenge Variation: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Replay: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Novellas: completed!
    Maggie Boyd Maggie Boyd
    Participant
    Post count: 70

    Chrysanthemum- A chrysanthemum is the symbol of the throne of Japan. Read a romance set in Japan or anywhere in Asia. Clockwork Samurai Jeannie Lin I didn’t like this one as much as the first but that said I still enjoyed this story of Soling and Chang-Wei kicking ass in feudal Japan. I think my main problem with the tale was that the story didn’t go anywhere: we essentially left our two characters in exactly the same position we found them in. The new characters introduced were actually doppelgangers for the characters we already have. Just no momentum or growth here at all. The last scene did set up potential problems so it will be interesting to see where the author takes it.

    Paper Roses – They are only artificial. Read a sci-fi novel or a book with characters pretending to be someone they are not. Sci-fiction Netherwood Michele Lang In the future, life is lived primarily in cyberspace. Talia loves the dark side of the web, the Netherwood where the rules are never quite what they seem. Here, her lover The Avenger has shown her sides of herself she never knew. Now, as sheriff, she finds herself in the awkward position of hunting him in the Real World, a place where few go and no one really wants to be. But the more Talia hunts him, the more she realizes she may just be on the wrong side of this issue.

    The writing here was childish, the plotting convoluted. Maybe if I were more of a gamer or someone who lived more online I would have felt differently but this book fell flat for me.

    The Floral Challenge – ten down,seven to go.
    Cocktail Challenge – complete!
    Letter Q Challenge – complete!

    Maggie Boyd Maggie Boyd
    Participant
    Post count: 70

    Centaurea cyanus, also known as bachelor’s buttons (blue cornflower) – Worn by the Nazi party in Austria during the 30s. Read a WWII romance. A Trace of Smoke Rebecca Cantrell

    It was okay is the perfect descriptor for this book. I found myself interested and invested but ultimately a bit disappointed as the book continually set up an interesting twist only to fail to execute the possibilities the author had worked so hard to make possible.

    The rest of this review contains spoilers. Seriously, not complete “ruin the read” graphic bits of information but strong enough hints that for some they might prove to be too much. If you are the anti-spoiler kind, stop reading here.

    S
    T
    I
    L
    L
    H
    E
    R
    E?

    My main problems with the book lay with:

    1. The killer. Obvious from the moment we first learn where Ernst had spent his last night. Seriously freakin’ obvious; that it took the heroine to almost the end to figure out was pathetic.
    2. The boy. Why, after one week, was she willing to die for this boy? Yes, there was the similarity to her brother and the mourning she was experiencing but none of those things really add up to taking the risks she did or making the choices she did. We are meant to believe that above all, Hannah is a survivor and yet this one decision would show her to be too emotional to be truly good at that.
    3. The money. Once she had a bit of a windfall she spent like a child who has just received their first bit of Christmas cash. Reckless in the extreme given their circumstances.
    4. The boy, part 2. He clearly knew his father, was a bit clever and even manipulative regarding keeping himself where he needed to be in order to reunite with his parent. So why the utter attachment to Hannah towards the end?
    5. The suitor. Seriously, there was a child involved and this man risked everything for a casual acquaintance. He would undoubtedly by punished when found by the SS. Why??

    Too many questions to make it a good read but intriguing enough that I might give the author a second chance. I doubt I would do that if the setting weren’t so intriguing but the WWII Germany setting adds a chilling, atmospheric suspense to the books which make them alluring for me.

    The Floral Challenge – eleven down,six to go.
    Cocktail Challenge – complete!
    Letter Q Challenge – complete!

    Maggie Boyd Maggie Boyd
    Participant
    Post count: 70

    Acanthus – symbolizes The Arts: Read a book with an artist or dealing with art in some way. Her Last Chance Michelle Albert

    This book had an intriguing premise: FBI Agent Vincent DeLuca is working on a series of hard to solve art thefts and Claudia Cruz, an independent investigator for a group called Avalon, is working on the same thing. As the two trip all over each other solving the case, they fall in love and voila! HEA ending.

    That’s what should have happened but it didn’t really work that way . The first hundred pages aren’t really devoted to crime solving but lust thought coupled with snarling insults at each other as well as the occasional game of one-upmanship. That became tedious about ten pages in. The writing was clunky and some of the characters were more caricature like than those pictures you can buy at carnivals. This was a thoroughly hard slog for me and the only good things I can say about it is that it got slightly more interesting towards the end, when they concentrated on the crime solving and that it is now off my TBR and on the way to the UBS. Goodbye and good riddance.

    The Floral Challenge – twelve down, five to go.
    Cocktail Challenge – complete!
    Letter Q Challenge – complete!

    Maggie Boyd Maggie Boyd
    Participant
    Post count: 70

    Baby’s Breath – Read a book where the h/h have a child. Somebody to Love Kristan Higgins

    This book was a mixed bag read for me. On the one hand, the book was engaging, entertaining and enjoyable. On the other, there were quirks that kept it from reaching DIK status.

    Parker lives in her father’s mansion with her young son, Nick. Down to earth, cheerful and kind-natured she is best-friends with her baby daddy’s new wife (Ethan and Lucy from The Next Best Things) and is just getting set to start lady’s night with some scrumptious wine and girl talk when daddy dearest arrives. He never visits so Parker pulls out her glacial rich girl act and greets him and his entourage with cool hauteur. The visit turns her life upside down. Daddy has lost it all in an insider trading scandal and will likely go to prison. His assets are to be liquidated starting with the house which Parker and Nick call home. Parker and Nick’s trust funds are gone because she made the mistake of having her father serve as sole manager. The only bright spot is told to her by Thing One, Parker’s least favorite member of the entourage. Attorney and smokin’ hottie James Cahill advises Parker she still owns the beach house her aunt bequeathed her. Parker’s never been there but she’s going now with plans to sell it and use the money to buy a house next to Ethan and Lucy.

    Parker is one of those too good to be true characters. There is no sense of real loss from her change of fortune, just a practical outlook on how she can make this work for her and Nicky. She has donated all the money from her successful children’s book series The Holy Rollers to charity and doesn’t call to see how that can be changed (with a movie coming out the books should still be lucrative). She simply plans to sell the beach house and move on. When the beach cottage turns out to be a shack, she cries for less than an afternoon and then moves forward to repairing the place. Fortunately James, who worked for a contractor during his college summers, shows up to help out.

    Naturally James, a near perfect hero, and Parker fall in love. And their romance is sweet but one of my problems with the story is that it is also painfully slow. I got tired of the hurdles the author threw in their way, especially towards the end. Another problem I had was with Parker’s ease to adjusting to being broke, notorious (her dad’s crime made CNN) and the endless voices in her head (the Holy Rollers talk to her). Hearing any sexual longings referred to as Lady Land grew a bit irksome too.

    Overall though the book was enjoyable. Readers will like it a lot better if they read Catch of the Day and The Next Big Thing first though since characters from those books feature prominently in this one.

    The Floral Challenge – thirteen down,four to go.
    Cocktail Challenge – complete!
    Letter Q Challenge – complete!

    Amanda Amanda
    Participant
    Post count: 13

    Finally finished my genre challenge. Here was my final list:

    Historical Romance: SWEETEST REGRET by Meredith Duran (March) – 4 stars
    Contemporary Romance: DIRTY DANCING AT DEVIL’S LEAP by Julie Anne Long (September) – 4 stars
    Paranormal Romance: MAGIC BLEEDS by Ilona Andrews (September) – 4 stars
    Fantasy Romance: BREATH OF FIRE by Amanda Bouchet (January) – 3 stars
    Romantic Suspense: LOGAN’S LIGHT by Dale Mayer (July) – 3 stars
    Romantic Comedy: FULL PACKAGE by Lauren Blakely (January) – 4 stars
    Multi-Cultural Romance: LEVEL UP by Cathy Yardley (January) – 4 stars
    LGBT Romance: ROLLER GIRL by Vanessa North (March) – 3.5 stars
    Inspirational Romance: A LADY OF ESTEEM by Kristin Ann Hunter (November) – 3 stars
    New Adult/YA Romance: THE MISTAKE by Elle Kennedy [NA] (June) – 3 stars; THE SECRET OF A HEART NOTE by Stacey Lee [YA] (May) – 5 stars
    Western Romance: BREATHLESS by Beverly Jenkins (February) – 4 stars
    Holiday Romance: A MATCH MADE IN MISTLETOE by Anna Campbell (February) – 3 stars
    Science Fiction Romance: RADIO SILENCE by Alyssa Cole (November) – 3 stars
    Military Romance: HAMILTON’S BATTALION [anthology] (December) – 4 stars overall
    Sports Romance: FOR THE WIN by Sara Rider (June) – 4 stars
    Time Travel Romance: CONFESSIONS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT by Laurie Viera Rigler (November) – 1 star
    Gothic Romance: SILENCE FOR THE DEAD by Simone St. James (December) – 5 stars

    Sandlynn Sandlynn
    Participant
    Post count: 39

    Continuing with the Genre Challenge:

    Read a Multi-Cultural Romance

    For this category, I read two books which will wrap up the genre part of my reading challenge. The first was Alisha Rai’s Hate to Want You, published in 2017. This book is the first of a trilogy (I think) and involves a long relationship between two families who were interconnected by friendship as well as business.

    When we begin the story, we learn that the heroine, Livvy, has been traveling the country and hasn’t seen much of her family for almost a decade. Our hero, Nicholas, has stayed at home in Rockville, New York. Livvy and Nicholas’ grandfathers used to be partners in an expanding grocery store business. Livvy’s family is Japanese American and Nicholas’ comes from a European American background. They were not only business partners but friends. Unfortunately the friendship/partnership didn’t carry over as well to the next generation, and because of a scandal that led to tragedy involving members of both families, Nicholas’ father bought out the business from Livvy’s mother at what appeared to be unfavorable terms. As a result, resentments spilled over to the third generation which badly affected a burgeoning love affair between Livvy and Nicholas. Under pressure from his father, Nicholas broke up with Livvy which ultimately led to her leaving home, pursuing a career as a tattoo artist while Nicholas became an executive in the grocery chain. In the ten years since Livvy left, Nicholas and she would meet once a year for a night of no strings attached passion, but now she’s back in town to try and reconnect with her family which promises to upset the precarious truce the two families have lived under.

    This story has a lot of personal inter-relationships and history to introduce and have us care about, so at first, I found myself having to go back and reread in order to refresh my memory on the details. Interspersed with all of that are a number of passionate encounters between our hero and heroine, which I found to be one too many. I understand that the couple was wildly attracted and couldn’t keep their hands off each other, but I kind of got bored with the sex and wanted more of the family dynamics, especially since there are two additional books in which other members of the family will be the focus. This is the first book of Rai’s I’ve read and I believe her earlier work was more on the erotic side. So, I get that that’s a big part of her style. But, this book – and perhaps the others in this series – would be better served by less eroticism and more storytelling. In any event, I’m hoping that’s the case since the second book of the series is the next one we’re reading for the romance book group I’m in. I have to add, though. I appreciated that the heroine is from a non-white family and also that other characters are also diverse, like Livvy’s sister-in-law who has Pakistani roots. But, the author didn’t do a lot with that. I guess I would give this book a B-.

    ********

    The second multi-cultural romance I read was a novella titled The Perilous Life of Jade Yeo by Zen Cho, published in 2012. Available as an E-read, it’s about 90 pages long.

    This story is set in London during the early 1920’s. Our heroine, Jade Yeo, is ethnic Chinese but her immediate family lives in Malaysia, and her extended family – aunt, uncle, and cousins – live in England. If I’m recalling correctly, Jade comes to England to attend school, and ends up staying to pursue a writing career. Although her parents would love her to return and marry a Chinese gentleman they have picked out, Jade is interested in being a modern, independent, career woman. As such, she’s making a modest living submitting articles to journals and magazines, most notably on ladies’ fashion and style. On occasion, she also submits reviews of recently published books, especially to her good friend, Ravi, who is the editor of the Oriental Literary Review and is from India. As a result of the latest book review she’s had published, Jade earns the questionable attention of the celebrated author who invites her to a party he is throwing. Jade is, of course, interested in going to such an exciting event but her review was scathing and so she expects to be raked over the coals. On the contrary, the author is fascinated by Jade and, before you know it, he’s making advances that she knows she should reject….

    This story is written in diary form. Jade is amusing, snarky, and definitely has a unique view of the world that sometimes appears fearless and at other times foolish. I wouldn’t exactly call this story a romance since it focuses so much on Jade’s “misadventures.” But, things do work out well for her in spite of her almost naïve, cavalier outlook on life. In fact, she’s damn lucky that it does. (It’s just too bad we don’t get to see much of the relationship in which she ends up.) Unlike the previous book I read, however, Cho’s characters feel like they are rooted in another culture – possibly because they are, even if they are trying to assimilate to the West. Jade might be “modern” – in some ways – but she also retains awareness of the sensibilities of her family and culture, which leads to some of her quirkiest observations. I have to admit I loved the opening line of the story: “I had tea with the intolerable aunt today. Aunt Iris, the one who is so rich she has a new fur every year, and so mean she has installed a tip box by the door of every WC in her house, so you have to pay a charge every time you need to go.” Ha! I’d give this little story a B+.

    *****

    The Cocktail Challenge – 10 down – complete

    Alphabet Challenge – 10 down (A, B, C, G, H, J, K, M, P, & Q) – complete
    Genre Challenge – 10 down – complete

    Library addict library addict
    Participant
    Post count: 81

    Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay
    Want You More by Nicole Helm:
    Much of the groundwork for this story was introduced in the previous book. The h/h each had issues with feeling unworthy of love. I liked the h/h, both individually and as a couple. But much of the book was their internal monologues going around in circles. I had issues with the way two background incidents were used. Each was a case of “bad things we’re done to them by other people” with no real on page exploration or resolution. Neither was off in and of itself, but both felt like a cheap short-cut to play up the reader’s sympathy (can’t get into specifics without major spoilers). The h/h each would have benefited from professional counseling. Despite their earlier break-up being one of friendship as they hadn’t been romantically involved, this was very much a reunion romance. The author did a good job of making each of their reasons for leaving credible yet showing the growth and change which allowed for a believable HEA this time around.

    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay: 15 down, 2 to go…
    • The 20th Century Challenge: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler): completed!
    • The Breakfast Cereal Challenge: completed!
    • The Cocktail Challenge: completed!
    • Seventeen Magazine(s)! Challenge: completed!
    • The Alphabet Challenge Variation: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Replay: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Novellas: completed!
    Maggie Boyd Maggie Boyd
    Participant
    Post count: 70

    Crocus– foresight. Read a novel where one of the characters has “the sight” of some kind –dreams, visions, clairvoyance etc. Or read a paranormal romance. Or a romance involving a prophecy. Delia’s Shadow Jamie Lee Moyer

    This was an interesting book about a young medium who is haunted by a ghost. Determined to free herself of the apparition and convinced that can only happen in her hometown of San Francisco, she returns home. While this doesn’t free her from the ghost, she is glad to be back in time for her best friend’s wedding and to spend some time with her foster mother before that worthy lady passes on.

    While Delia is enjoying her reunion with family, Gabe, a detective, is struggling to find a horrible serial killer. When he and Delia meet, the case is blown wide open; Delia’s ghost has information relevant to the case. Delia and Gabe fall in love as the a killer stalks them in early 20th century San Francisco.

    Enjoyable characters, well written history and an interesting mystery made this book an easy, fun read. I’m not sure I will continue with the series but I certainly found this first book worth my time.

    The Floral Challenge – fourteen down,three to go.
    Cocktail Challenge – complete!
    Letter Q Challenge – complete!

    Library addict library addict
    Participant
    Post count: 81

    Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay
    Aydarr by Veronica Scott:
    The heroine woke up alone in a strange forest on an unknown planet. Kidnapped along with much of her colony, the heroine joined forced with the hero who was part of a bio-engineered group being studied by alien scientists. The heroine was smart and resourceful. She did get some help from an unexpected source which was a lot of fun. The romance took a bit of a backseat to the setup and introduction of many sequel bait characters, particularly in the middle section of the story. I wish their relationship had gotten more page time as I liked them as a couple. But overall a very entertaining action/adventure romance. I am looking forward to both more in this spin-off series as well as the original Sectors series next year.

    Storm Warning by Nora Roberts: I’ve had this book in my TBR list for a very long time *mumble,mumbleoveradecademumble*. First published in 1984 parts of the book felt very dated, most particularly the hero’s attitude. He was as a complete jerk to the heroine for most of the book (not even counting the casual rape threats even if he did eventually apologize). The heroine truly suspected him of murder and yet planned to destroy the evidence that would have proven his guilt. She came across as wishy washy. There were a few interesting secondary characters but the murder mystery was bland and the killer obvious from before the murder actually happened. Overall a very uneven read but one I’m glad to finally check off from my TBR mountain.

    I discovered some new-to-me authors and completed all of my reading goals for the year. Now looking forward to 2018’s challenges.

    • The 20th Century Challenge: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler): completed!
    • The Breakfast Cereal Challenge: completed!
    • The Cocktail Challenge: completed!
    • Seventeen Magazine(s)! Challenge: completed!
    • The Alphabet Challenge Variation: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Replay: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Novellas: completed!
    • Simply Seventeen Challenge (The Whittler) – Repeat Replay: completed!
    Elaine smith elaine smith
    Participant
    Post count: 3

    I’ve just finished The Soldier’s Scandal by Cat Sebastian. This was in an effort to try a completely new genre for me in 2017 as the one into which this falls (LGBT) is completely outside of my own reading experience. I really don’t know what to think about it. I would agree it was pretty well written, the characterisations, particularly Jack Turner, were good and some of the period ambience was well done. However, I really had some problems with it. For a start, homosexuality was illegal in England until 1967 and legalised only in 1980 in Scotland and 1982 in Northern Ireland. For a long time, and probably in the early 19th century, the Buggery Act of 1533 was still on the statue books and as I understand it, homosexual acts were a capital crime and executions were carried out. I really have done very little research on this so perhaps I have misunderstood the facts. It was just that I found the relative ease with which Rivington and Turner were able to have sex was unbelievable. We are talking about an era before most bedrooms had locks on the doors. In a country (or urban) inn or country house, servants were coming and going at all hours of the day and night so concealment must have been difficult though the author would have us accept that these two men were able, on numerous occasions, to do what they liked, day or night. I found it hard to swallow.

    I am not squeamish when reading about sex in a novel although I do like some romance with it! As I read this book, I found myself wondering just who the author is aiming this book at. Gay men? Straight men? Straight women? Gay women? Someone else? After reading it and thinking about it long and hard, I just felt that I was a voyeur as I read it, and that the descriptions of the main characters lovemaking was, for me at any rate, unpalatable. I found myself wondering just what it is that makes the descriptions of LGBT sexual acts appealing to straight women (or men, for that matter). Do LGBT people read these books? If they do, I’d really be interested to know what they make of them, whether they are popular within that community and whether they consider that an author such as Cat Sebastian has got LGBT love and sex right. I believe she must not be LGBT herself as she says on her website that she has a husband and three children. I would also like to know what led her to write in this genre.

    Finally, it’s not a genre to which I will be returning. I just felt too uncomfortable with it. And I wonder if those in the LGBT community like to read romance novels that are about straight relationships, love and sex acts. I don’t know if I am stirring up a hornet’s next here or not. I really would be interested to know what others here at AAR think about it.

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all of you here at AAR.

Viewing 15 posts - 76 through 90 (of 94 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.