Thursday, 25 October 2012

Buyer's Remorse by Lori L Lake

Thirty Three year old Police Sergeant, Leona Reese, (Leo), has been on the force for over ten years. She’s always been a crack shot, but not this time. She’s just failed her bi yearly shooting test due to a problem with her eyesight. Leo is shocked and dismayed. She’s even more astounded when she gets reassigned to a DHS department. Although it’s a three month temporary assignment until Leo gets her sight sorted out, she’s devastated.

When Leo reports to her new department for work, she is given a case where an elderly woman has been murdered at an assisted care residential accommodation. At first it seems as though the woman has been murdered by a would be burglar. It soon becomes apparent that something is off. It’s definitely not the simple case it first appeared to be. Will Leo’s investigative police experience enable her to solve the case before someone else becomes a victim?

There is far more to this book than the synopsis outlines.

Leo has a life partner, Daria. Both women are struggling with their own problems and their relationship has gone off key. Work issues and now health issues have taken a toll on their relationship. Leo certainly has her plate full, she has an important decision to make regarding her health and a killer to catch. She also needs time to spend with Daria to get their relationship back on track. Due to Daria’s work commitments, this won’t be easy. Every way Leo turns there is an obstacle. Will she ever get her life sorted out?

First and foremost, this is a mystery. Following a close second, we have the characters and their lives outside of the mystery. This book actually has two stories. The main story with the mystery and how it’s solved. The secondary story follows the deceased woman’s partner, Eleanor. Both stories are cleverly interwoven together and each is important in it’s own right. All the characters interacted well together, they are well formed and multidimensional. The story is fast paced and kept me on the edge of my seat.

The murder mystery is solved right near the end of the book. I didn’t guess who the perpetrator was either. Always an added bonus.

The story concluded, but there are a number of things left in readiness for the sequel, which should be due out soon.

This book is a page turner, as I’ve come to expect from any book Lori Lake writes. A well written story, with likeable characters, an exciting believable plot and a comfortable easy read. I’m always confident when buying a Lori Lake book of an enjoyable read. Another to add to my pile of books to re-read

Monday, 15 October 2012

Rayne Comes To Town by Dannie Marsden

Rayne Matthews has had enough. She’s not going to sit back and take another beating at the hands of her abusive father. He has arranged for her to marry a man she doesn’t even know. She isn’t going to do that either. In sheer desperation, Rayne grabs the first thing to hand, a brass paper weight and whacks her father with it. When Rayne realizes what she’s done, she does the only thing she can. She packs a bag and changes into her brothers clothes and runs away.

Rayne heads for her aunt and uncles ranch in Wisconsin. Rayne knows she will have a home with them and be welcome. Rayne sets off, constantly looking over her shoulder for the posse she is sure will be out looking for her. When Rayne arrives in Wisconsin, a shock and also a surprise is waiting for her.

Rayne meets Emma, a young woman who has grown up with prostitutes as her carers after the death of her mother. Rayne is immediately taken with Emma, she’s the woman of her dreams. Will Emma return Rayne’s feelings though?

At last! A tale of the wild west. One of my favorite genres in lesfic.

The two main characters Rayne and Emma are so obviously meant to be together. The romance is sweet, slow and sensual and is a delight to read. Both women have had a rough life in way way and another. Their life together doesn’t get off to a very good start either. The rest of the characters play an important part in furthering the story along. All the characters are well formed and interact well together. Even the baddie I detested.

I loved the scenic descriptions of the western landscape. Although I’ve never visited the wild west or Wisconsin, I was totally able to visualize the town, homestead and surroundings.

The story has lots of tension and I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. I had to keep slowing down to enjoy the story to it’s fullest. Unfortunately, the end of the book came all too soon. I wanted to read more about Rayne and Emma and their way of life. I’m hoping this book will have a sequel. This is a book I would definitely re-read time and again.

Family Jewels by Kate Christie

Elizabeth Starreveld, (Junior), is going through a really rough time. Her girlfriend Maddie has dumped her, but that’s not even the worst part, she’s left Junior for her best friend, Dez. That’s double betrayal when you lose your girlfriend and your best friend all in one go.

Junior’s friend and mentor, Fitzy, is seriously ill and not expected to live much longer. Her Dutch/American family have never really accepted her lesbian lifestyle. It’s like they think she has a choice and she’s elected to be a lesbian.

In the midst of all this, Junior’s father invites her to go on a trip to the Netherlands with him. Junior thinks he is going to try to talk her into going back to work in the family jewelry store. Junior had decided long ago that she would never go back. It’s with trepidation that Junior accepts his offer.

Junior gets quite a surprise when the trip goes so well. She isn’t even asked to go and work at the store. While exploring Amsterdam with her father, they both begin to bond together. Each learning more about the other than they ever had before. Both Junior and her father question the whys and wherefores of where they had both made mistakes along the way. By the time they return to Michigan, Junior has not only found out more about her family, she’s now ready to move on to the next phase in her life.

Anyone looking for a straight forward lesbian romance won’t find it here. What you will find is an extremely well written book, which is rich in history and the dynamics of family relationships when one of the family is a lesbian. This is basically the story of Junior and her family and friends. Her life, her coming out experience, her loves and losses. Not only romantic losses, but the deaths of those past and present she’s loved and how she deals with all the problems she encounters in her everyday life.

There is a fantastic tour through the the Netherlands, the scenic descriptions had me actually seeing and smelling the flowers and seeing the coffee shops and the clubs and landscape. I loved the tours through places I can only dream of visiting. The Anne Frank Museum and the Homomonument, plus the Keukenhof Gardens, to name a few places. (I Googled them all, and they are exactly as I had visualized them while reading the book).

The characters in this book all interact really well together. Each is essential in the progress of the story of the journey of Junior’s life. There are plenty of highs and lows and lots of fun, as well as the emotional turmoil Junior experiences.

This book left me with a sense of well being. It’s always an added bonus for me when I’ve totally lost myself in the places with the characters an author describes. I look forward to Kate Christie’s next book eagerly.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Short Snippets Of September Reads

Fugitives of Love by Lisa Girolami

Gallery owner, Brenna Wright, is always on the look out for new artists for her New York Art Gallery. When Brenna sees a stained glass window created by Sinclair Grady, she knows she’s on to a winner.
Sinclair Grady is a virtual recluse living at Permquid Point, Maine. She collects sea glass from the beaches and turns them into exquisite works of art.
When Brenna and Sinclair meet, both women feel the pull on their heartstrings. But Sinclair is hiding a deep, dark secret, which if revealed could have far reaching consequences for both women.
Another winner for Lisa Girolami. The book is well written, the characters well formed and the story is exciting. Far more than a romance, something to get your teeth in to. Star rating 5/5


Magnetic by Robin Alexander

After being dumped by Olivia, her partner of six years, Layne Stone does something totally out of character, she has a night of wild sex with a perfect stranger. Stacy Mayeaux woke up alone after a night of hot sex with a woman she’d met the night before. Stacy can’t get the woman out of her head. Layne and Stacy did not expect to meet again. When they do, it sparks off an embarrassing situation for them both. But the magnetic attraction between them cannot be denied, no matter how much they try.
I enjoyed this book, although I didn’t find some of the characters very believable and the book was lacking the depth and sparks Robin’s books usually have. Star rating 4/5


Month of Sunday’s by Yolanda Wallace

Rachel Bauer swore off relationships after being dumped by her long term lover. Her friends have other ideas though and try to set her up with celebrity chef, Griffin Sutton. Rachel has heard of Griffin’s womanizing and declines a date. Griffin won’t take no for an answer and asks Rachel to take a ‘month of Sunday’s’ culinary journey with her. Will Rachel fall for Griffin’s charm? What is Griffin’s long term plans for Rachel?
I loved this well written book and all it’s characters. The story was a delight to read. This is in my opinion, Yolanda Wallace’s best book ever. Star rating 5/5


Above Reproach by Lynn Ames

Public servant, Sedona Ramos is dedicated to her job, she is fluent in three languages and can pass herself off as a variety of different nationalities. She is a valuable asset to the National Security Agency. When Sedona makes a startling discovery from images of a nuclear plant in Iraq, she’s signed her own death warrant. Vaughn Elliot leaves her remote home and her exile after receiving an urgent request from Kate Kyle. So begins an urgent mission to keep Sedona alive and save the lives of countless millions of people. Will the task force succeed?
An excellent, well written, thrilling page turner. The second book in the Mission Classified series. I’m delighted to see the return of Kate and Jay from Lynn Ames’s earlier trilogy. This is an added bonus to a fantastic book. Star rating 5/5


Lucky by Storm

Artist Parker Lee is having a mid life crisis. She’s also lost her muse. Out of the blue she comes across Lucky, a Harley bike, falls immediately in love with it and purchases it on the spot. Parker decides to chill out for a while at her friend’s lakeside house. She sets off on Lucky, not knowing that her life is about to change forever. Parker’s granddaughter, Jackson, turns up unexpectedly. Parker is attracted to her married next door neighbor, Tricia. She also meets bikers, babes, backs and bunnies. But will she get her muse back?
A nicely written story which has lots of diverse characters, each one essential to the story. I’m not into bikes or art, but I did enjoy Lucky immensely. This book should especially appeal to bikers and artists but not exclusively. Star rating 5/5


Monday, 1 October 2012

Out On The Panhandle by R.E Bradshaw

Soul mates, Decky and Charlie have been together now for two years. From the moment Decky had first seen Charlie, she knew exactly what being in love meant. The feeling, fortunately, was mutual. Decky and Charlie are so much in love it still feels surreal at times.

Decky and Charlie have left their home in Outer Banks, North Carolina and are heading off to visit Charlie’s family in Beaver County, Oklahoma. Known in bygone days as The Oklahoma Panhandle.

When Decky and Charlie arrive, Decky begins to wonder what she’s let herself in for and how she’s going to cope with the huge Warren family reunion. More to the point, Decky is worrying about how she will be welcomed by some members of Charlie’s family. Although most of Charlie’s family seem to be aware she is a lesbian, it has never been discussed and Charlie has never come out to her family. Are things about to change?

Decky has been researching the Warren family history. She loves genealogy. Louise, Charlie’s mother, hands Decky a box of documents stating that the contents would clear up some of the questions concerning Meredith Etheridge. (Merdy). Merdy was married to Grace and Decky learns of an amazing secret that has been hidden for many years. Is Louise trying to tell Decky and Charlie something?

This book is absolutely amazing. R.E Bradshaw has surpassed herself with her excellent writing skills , storytelling and the amount of painstaking research she’s done into Native American history to make this book the delightful read that it is.

The book sees the return of Decky and Charlie, their adventures began in Out On The Sound and I’ve long awaited their return. Both books are complete, but I would definitely advise reading Out On The Sound first. You will be missing out on a brilliant story if you don’t.

R.E Bradshaw has written this book in a different format to her usual style. The story tells of past history of the Native American using manuscripts from the past. The past being the wild west is seamlessly interwoven with the present modern day, not so wild west. So, we have the best of both worlds here. I love tales from the wild west and I wasn’t disappointed. From the excellent scenic descriptions of past and present, I could easily visualize myself in both times looking on, even being among the characters as the story unfolded.

I love the multidimensional characters, Decky and Charlie and Merdy, Grace and Thora. They all play well with the other equally important characters. Each and every character is essential to the progression of the story. They all play their parts to perfection. Even the ones we are meant to dislike.

The whole book caused me to experience a myriad of emotions. Some parts are so laugh out loud, I was glad to be reading in the privacy of my home. Other parts are pure delicious romance. Then there was the choking emotion of sadness. All written with sympathy and understanding as only an excellent author can do. Followed by the overall feel good factor of satisfaction I get when I’ve come to the end of a tremendous book.

To sum up, we have two romances, one past and one present. Each with a profound and everlasting love that goes into infinity everlasting. A rich and deep history of the old wild west and the Native American’s. A modern day western and everyday living. Plus a rollercoaster ride of a cow chip throwing contest, a crazy homophobic sister-in-law, a horse round up and a family secret, along with a wealth of other goings on. So, hang on to the edge of your seat.

I sincerely hope these characters are going to get another outing soon. I’ve said this before, but for new readers of my little reviews, I’ll just say again, each book I read of R.E. Bradshaw’s is the best ever, that is until I go back to one of her previous books and suddenly, that’s the best. So, I guess I’m saying here, they are all top notch books in their own right. For anyone who hasn’t read an R.E Bradshaw book before, I envy you. You have all the delights of the wonderful reads to come. Me, I’m just looking forward now to her next book with eager anticipation.

Sweet Nod by Tammy Whaley

Detective Sergeant Jane Sweet, from the Cleveland Police Department, is called in to investigate the death of a Conservative State Senator. The Senator had been involved in a kinky sex scene in a run down sleazy hotel. As Jane’s investigations get underway, so more deaths begin to occur.

The killer always seems to know who or what to target. Jane can’t seem to catch a break. Is it possible they have a leak in the department or their security has been breached? When evidence turns up implicating Jane in the murder she is investigating, it looks like she is being set up. But who is setting her up? Surely not one of Cleveland’s finest?

When Jane suspects someone has been rifling through her desk and other belongings, she knows she has to find the culprit before they destroy her career.

Jane is on a mission and will not rest until the case has been solved. Whoever is setting her up, whoever the killer may be, one thing is for sure..............They will be sorry. They don’t call Jane Sweet a crazy bitch for nothing!

Jane Sweet is a hard ass detective. Her life is a mess and has been since the death of her partner Brenda, two years earlier. In fact, the things Jane gets up to, it’s a wonder she’s still functioning, let alone holding down a responsible job. She is the main character in this book and is she great. I love her character even though she’s flawed. There are many dimensions to Jane, some good, some bad, but this is what makes her unique with a charm of her own. The other characters all blend in well with her. Even those I wanted to hate, they all played their parts to enable to story to be not just good, but great.

I didn’t guess who the killer was until I was almost at the end of the book. Even though the story was so well laid out and there were clues to follow, nothing was obvious or jumped out.

I’m rather hoping that this is going to be the beginning of a series with Jane Sweet and her side kicks. She’s a great character and too good to not bring out to play again.

Neptune's Ring by Ali Spooner

Levi is happily working as a bartender at Venus Rising, an exclusive lesbian resort, when Nat and Liz make her an offer she can’t refuse. In a whirlwind of activity, Levi finds herself alone on a private island overseeing the work to open a new luxurious lesbian resort, of which she is now a partner in business with Liz, Nat and a couple of other friends.

Levi is head over heels in love with Vanessa, but Simone is not going to let her go, not with out a fight. What devious and underhanded tricks will Simone use to try to lure Levi back?

Work on the new resort is going really well, but the island has a reputation for being haunted by a young woman who had disappeared while she worked on the island for the previous owner. Will Levi see any ghostly happenings? Will she want to stay on the island alone knowing of this? Is there even any truth to the hauntings?

As the resort developments are near to being completed, Levi makes a startling discovery. She also receives a proposal she can’t refuse, she’s been asked to marry. But who has won Levi’s heart, Simone or Vanessa?

This sequel is equally as good as Venus Rising. The story continues on from where Venus Rising left off. It is an easy book to get into and there is enough back ground for it to be a standalone. But I would advise reading the first book before this one as you would be seriously missing out on an excellent book if you don’t.

I like the way Levi has come into her own in this book. She’s taken on a partnership and with it a lot of responsibility. The story continues on Venus Rising, is partly on the Sappho One and moves across to Neptune’s Ring, which gives us some new scenic settings, which are really well described and easy to visualize.

A lot of the characters are the same, but there are new ones added in, all as loveable as the first set and all playing their parts to perfection to progress the story forward.

The story has an entirely different angle to Venus Rising. There is a ghost and a mystery to be solved. There is also a lovely heartfelt romance at the heart of the book, with all the red hot activity that comes with it. The book is also full of twists and turns, is exciting and a page turner.

There hasn’t been anything said about another book in this series, but there is definitely an opening for one. I, for one, would like to see another book with these characters. I haven’t had enough of them yet.

Unfortunately, as with Venus Rising, there are some typos in this book. But, they didn’t detract from the story at all. The reasonable price counteracts them in my opinion.

Venus Rising by Ali Spooner

After graduating with an MBA and in no hurry to decide on a career, twenty four year old Levi Johnson applies for a summer job bartending at an exclusive lesbian resort in the Islands. Levi is successful and gets the job and finds herself busy and enjoying her work and her life at Venus Rising. Levi is an instant success. The guests love her, she’s good at her job. Her new employers Nat and Liz are very pleased with their new employee. Life is great for Levi.

Simone, Nat’s sister and the owner of Sappho Cruise Lines, sets her sights on Levi. The two women quickly become inseparable. Both Levi and Simone are falling in love and seem to be heading in the direction of a permanent relationship. Until the day Simone shows herself in her true light. Simone has always been a player and just leaves the island and a broken hearted Levi with no explanation.

Vanessa is the Captain of the Sappho One cruise ship. When Vanessa meets Levi, she is smitten by her. But Levi is still nursing a broken heart. Vanessa sticks around and Levi finds herself becoming attracted to her. Vanessa becomes instrumental in healing Levi’s broken heart.

When Simone returns, she realizes she’s thrown away the best thing in her life. She isn’t going to let Levi go easily and begs for forgiveness. Who will Levi choose? The undependable scheming seductress Simone, who may break her heart again? Or the loving and dependable Vanessa who will do anything in her power to make Levi happy, including letting her go, if that’s what it takes?

This is the first book I’ve read by Ali Spooner, although I’ve had some of her books for a while. I’m only sorry I waited so long to discover what an excellent storyteller this author is. I really enjoyed this book.

The books centers around Levi, her job and her leisure time at the Venus Rising Resort. We read of the love triangle Levi finds herself being a part of when she falls in love with two vastly different women. All the characters in this book are multidimensional and are instrumental in the easy flow of this story.

There are many twists and turns and even the touch of an old curse to contend with. The book is chock full of red hot steamy sex and romance. A pure luxurious and easy read with some delightful characters.

There is a sequel, Neptune’s Ring, which I’ve already lined up to read.

Just one point I’m sorry to have to mention, the book could use an editor. Having said this, it isn’t so bad that it pulled me out of the story. For the very reasonable price, the length of the book and an excellent story, I can easily forgive this.

Submerged by Graysen Morgen

Scooter is a Lieutenant Commander in the Navy. She is currently the Executive Officer of the USS Lincoln, an attack submarine based near San Diego. She is well liked and has earned her rank and the respect of her crew. Scooter is also a lesbian and while she’s on shore leave, meets a woman in her sister’s bar. They have a glorious mutual one night stand.

When Scooter gets arrested and accused of a sexual crime by a female naval subordinate, Scooter is shocked to see the woman she’d been thinking about since their night together is the prosecuting attorney. What shocks and angers Scooter even more, is the woman ignores their night together and continues to prosecute her case.

Assistant District Attorney, Layne Carmichael hasn’t been able to forget the gorgeous woman she took home from a bar and had hot sex with one night. She would dearly like to see her again. She does, sooner rather than later. She has to prosecute her for a sex crime she can’t believe Scooter would have committed.

Will Scooter be found guilty or innocent? Is her distinguished career over?

Another really good, if somewhat short story from Graysen Morgen. The story is fast paced and exciting. The characters are multidimensional and interact well together. I don’t know much about submarines, but from the scenic descriptions I could easily visualize being on one.

As with all the other books I’ve read of Graysen’s this one has numerous typos and grammatical errors. If Graysen gets her books properly edited and drops the price, I think her books would be much sort after.

Fate Vs Destiny by Graysen Morgen

Logan Greer is a top investigator with The National Transport Safety Board. She inspects airports for security and safety and investigates plane crashes. She works strictly to the book, no grey areas at all with Logan. Logan is currently single and is all work, she has no time for relationships. The she meets two women and they both turn her well ordered life upside down

Jensen Tirado is a strange woman. She appears and disappears in and out of Logan’s life, leaving her wondering where she is and what she’s doing.

Brooke McCabe is also an investigator. She works for The Federal Aviation Association and frequently works with Logan. Brooke is red hot and Logan finds herself becoming more and more attracted to her and possibly wanting more than just casual sex. But Brooke has kept certain aspects of her life a secret. When Logan finds out what Brooke is hiding, her well ordered life unravels sending her spiralling downwards.

Will Logan decide to fight for what she wants? Will Logan choose fate or destiny?

A well thought out and exciting story. The main characters interact well together with the minor characters throughout the book. The scenic descriptions are vivid and it was easy to fall right into the well paced story. But....... Unfortunately, this book is in dire need of a decent editor. The typos did pull me out of the story. The book is way over priced for the way it has been presented.

However, if you are not worried about the editing issues, the story is excellent.