Monday, 15 December 2014

The One by JM Dragon

Rosa Moran was born in China. After the death of her parents she was taken in by her grandfather and educated in England. However, her heart had always remained in China. As soon as she was able, she returned to China as a missionary to help save the many orphans.

Philomena Casters, (Phil) is a pilot. She is tasked to deliver a letter to Rosa at the mission urging her immediate return to England due to a member of her family being ill. Rosa refuses point blank to return.

Phil’s and Rosa’s paths cross again a few months later when Phil flies back to the mission with twins who are in need of the missions help.

Unfortunately, all is not well at the mission and Phil and Rosa flee with the twins and two other children to the idyllic private settlement of Langshow. But, will they be offered the sanctuary they are desperately seeking for Rosa and the children?

Phil and Rosa are caught up with the undercurrents of war. Their lives are merged together and an unbreakable bond formed. Romance is in the air, but there are rocky roads ahead. There are also hidden secrets that when uncovered may scupper any chance the two women have of a life together. Or will they? After all when you’ve found ‘the one’ what else matters?

Another well written winner from the magical pen of JM Dragon. Each of JM Dragon’s books are very different. I never know what to expect, which makes for an exciting read. This is an edge of the seat page turner from the first page and continues through until the last.

Both Rosa and Phil are easy to get to know, multi-faceted characters. There are some fantastic secondary characters, including the Chinese children, even Gilda the plane is a character in her own right. However, one character was so obnoxious, I could have cheerfully throttled him. I’ll leave you all to guess which one I mean.

The story is set mainly in China and goes across to England. It is set before WW2 when the world is on the brink of the war and from the very well penned scenic descriptions, it was easy to visualize the story as it unfolded and feel like I was a part of the action.

Although this story is an adventure, there are also some hot scenes and a sweet romance running through it. So, a little something for most tastes. This story did conclude, but there is ample room for a sequel for these characters. I, for one, would be delighted to see a sequel published.


Monday, 1 December 2014

Claire's Song by Sunny Alexander

Claire Hollander and Kathleen Moore had had a very painful and traumatic break up. Fortunately they are now back together again and making up for lost time as they find new and exciting ways to show their love for each other.

Claire and Kathleen are living their lives quite happily in their Queen Anne Victorian home in the idyllic town of Canfield. They are surrounded by their loving friends Gayle and Robert Sutherland, Helen and Sam Hughes and local Sheriff Linc Hathaway. Their lives are almost perfect. But, life is apt to throw some curve balls along the way and a pressing, all consuming problem divides them once again.

Claire is a bit on the whacky side and well known for her childish tantrums when things don’t go her way. Claire wants a baby, badly. She will stop at nothing to achieve her desire to procreate as her biological clock ticks down.  Kathleen however, is not on board with Claire’s latest wishes. She’s carrying a lot of guilt and is haunted by being separated from her siblings years previously. Although Kathleen has tracked down most of her siblings, the twins, Rose and Charlie are still missing. Kathleen digs her heels in and point blank refuses to consider them having a child until they are found.

Claire and Kathleen’s relationship once again is on the rocks. As a last resort, they enter a competition to win six sessions with a couple’s therapist, Doctor Imajean Friend. Her methods are unlike those of other therapists, she seeks to reveal a couple’s hidden secrets. Will she be successful in getting Claire and Kathleen’s relationship back on track? Or will this be the end for them altogether?

This is without a doubt another blockbuster book in this series. I re-read Flowers From Iraq again before starting on this book, but for those who haven’t read it, there is no need to read it first. There is more than enough background to read this as a standalone. But, I urge you to read it, why miss out on another wonderfully well written and poignant story? Sunny Alexander is an excellent storyteller, she shows the reader instead of telling them.

Although this book is titled Claire’s Song, it doesn’t only focus on Claire and Kathleen. In fact, I would say that they and their friends are all main characters. All are essential in more or less equal parts to the dramatic and page turning storylines. The secrets these friends are hiding are dark and consuming. Learning about them and what makes them tick is an eye opener and so real and true to life.

I’m not sure if there will be another book in this series, but there ought to be. It simply begs for more. Kathleen, Claire and their friends have lots more to tell the reader. The story can’t possibly end here. That’s the only complaint I have with this book, I wanted more, much more.


Out Of Whack by Susan X Meagher

Darcy Morgan was a stickler for order. Almost OCD in her outlook. She worked hard at her job as a CPA, planned her life, obeyed the law and sat back hoping to reap the benefits of her hard work.

Unfortunately Darcy’s well ordered life grinds to a halt suddenly and she finds her life spiralling out of control. She’s just been very badly beaten and is now staggering through the streets of Brooklyn trying desperately to hide from her attacker. Darcy must find shelter or she won’t survive.

Darcy has a lucky meeting with Tess, a woman who is about to change her life forever.

Darcy has involved the kind hearted and innocent travel writer in her perilous dilemma. Darcy has done wrong, but in her now torrid disorderly world, the meaning of right and wrong has blurred into oblivion. Darcy’s survival instinct has kicked in and she’s going to stop at nothing to ensure she lives.

This is another winner from master storyteller Susan X Meagher. A fast paced suspenseful intriguing adventure story with a wonderful sweet and tender romance running through it. One minute Darcy’s life is clipping along at a nice pace, busy but uneventful, the next she finds herself on the run from the Russian mob. I don’t want to add in any spoilers, I’ll just say that meeting up with Tess was the one good thing to come out of all the pain and anguish Darcy is suffering.

I really like Darcy and Tess, they are two multidimensional and loveable characters and easy to get to know. They are backed up by some great secondary characters. Some good and some just pure evil. They all enhance the story and enable the reader to enjoy an edge of the seat, page turning experience amongst a backdrop of spectacularly described scenery.

Susan Meagher has done something a little different at the end of this book. Be sure to take full advantage of it. It will add to your enjoyment.


Wicked Things Ed's Jae and Astrid Ohletz

This is an eclectic collection of fourteen stories of things that go bump in the night, supernatural beings and chilling tales to thrill you and keep you awake at night.

1) Spirit Quest, LLC by Andi Marquette

A story of a team of ghost hunters and their quest to find the ghost of a young woman. They get more than they bargain for. Star rating 5/5

2) A Certain Moon by Elaine Burnes

A story of a first date and some unruly fur babies. Star rating 5/5

3) Walking After Midnight by Lois Cloarec Hart

A story of unrequited love and it’s outcome on party night. Star rating 5/5

4) Moon Dance by Bridget Essex

A story of a woman on a camping trip dreaming of her ex lover, or is it a dream? Star rating 5/5

5) The Road Home by May Dawney

A story of a ghostly tale coming true, or does it? Star rating 5/5

6) Hit and Run by Q Kelly

A story of a hit and run on Halloween night five years previously. Star rating 4/5

7) A Lesson In Magic by Cori Kane

A story of a lesbian meeting a man on Halloween night and being attracted to him, but all is not as it seems. Star rating 4/5

8) Strega by R.G Emanuelle

A story of an attraction between a woman fleeing from an abusive marriage and a witch. Star rating 5/5

9) Object Permanence by Steph Gottschalk

A story of a terrible accident and a possible haunting. Star rating 5/5

10) Taylor-Made by Catherine Lane

A story of Taylor stealing a jacket and the magical outcome. Star rating 5/5

11) Ghost Lights by Erzabet Bishop

A story of a supernatural experience in a tea room. Star rating 5/5

12) A Winter Story by S.M Harding

A story of a ceremony to raise the dead. Star rating 4/5

13) That Day by Orhea The Dreamer

A story of a werewolf hunter on Halloween. Star rating 4/5

14) Fresh Blood by Eve Francis

A story of a vampire cop hiding her feeding habit from her girlfriend. Star rating 5/5

It goes without saying that these stories are above average. I enjoyed them all, some more than others, but they are all very well written and edited.  

Some of these authors are well known to me, others are new and I’ll be watching out for more from them in the future.

Primarily this book was published for Halloween, but it can be enjoyed at any time of the year.


Barring Complications by Blythe Rippon

Justice Victoria Willoughby is the newest Justice on the Supreme Court. It’s also an open secret that she’s also a lesbian.

The court is about to hear a case about gay marriage. So Victoria must deal with the press, persuade one of her colleagues to back it and come to terms with her own feelings about coming out of the closet.

Victoria finally finds the courage to face the challenges ahead, only to find that Genevieve Fornier is the lead Counsel on the case.

Victoria hasn’t spoken to Genevieve in over twenty years. She’s dreading the thought of their meeting again.

Genevieve has led an open life as an out lesbian. Quite the opposite of Victoria’s closeted life. When she finds out Victoria is going to be sitting on the bench, she wonders how she will feel after not speaking to her in over twenty years.

This is Blythe Rippon’s debut book. I was a bit wary of whether I would like and be able to understand this political intrigue/romance story as it’s all about DOMA and basically legalizing marriage in America and I’m British. I needn’t have been concerned, it’s an excellent story, very easy to understand and get into whatever country you live in.

The book is well written, well edited and a page turner. There is a delicious romance simmering away in the background in amongst the politics and court appearances. Blythe Rippon has obviously done extensive research too. There is a lot packed into this book, including homophobia, stalking, a touch of violence and heartache.

The two main characters, Victoria and Genevieve are both powerful and strong women, both at the top end of their careers. They have history between them and issues that have to be resolved before they can move forward on the path of being acquaintances, let alone friends or even anything more. It’s their journey that makes this book the page turner it is.

Both Victoria and Genevieve are multidimensional, they are bolstered by a wealth of secondary characters each one playing their own significant part to progress the story forward.

The book goes backwards and forwards between the past and the present, but it is very easy to keep track of the story.

It’s very hard to believe that this is a debut book, it most certainly doesn’t read like one. I’m looking forward to reading more from Blythe Rippon in the near future.


Thursday, 13 November 2014

Cowgirl Up by Ali Spooner

Ex army ranger, Coal Bryan, returns to Texas after her lover Tessa and friend Mitch were both killed in Afghanistan. She ends up working and living on the farm belonging to Melissa, the wife of Mitch, Coal had no idea who Melissa was, her arrival on the farm was pure fate. So it was a great shock to see photos she’d taken in Afghanistan of Tessa and Mitch on display in Melissa’s living room.

Coal is still hurting and fighting off the ravages of being at war and the loss of the love of her life and her best friend. She throws herself into the hard work on the farm and fits right in with the rest of the all male crew and soon earns the respect of the men. Coal, Melissa and the crew are as tight knit as any regular family.

When Melissa’s sister, Mary Leah, a cancer survivor, arrives on the farm to stay after a traumatic break up with her lover, sparks begin to ignite between her and Coal. Is it possible for Coal and Mary Leah to move on and find love again with each other? Both women have baggage. Both women have their own demons to overcome.

A beautiful, poignant story about love, survival and second chances. A story that sympathetically and tenderly deals with the aftermath of the devastating  destruction caused by a bomb in Afghanistan, the PTSD Coal suffers afterwards and Mary Leah’s triumphant comeback from her traumatic cancer surgery and subsequent chemotherapy treatments.

Both Coal and Mary Leah have been badly hurt and are desperately trying to overcome their pain. Together they both stand more chance of healing and finding the happiness they both deserve. These two wonderful characters are so realistically  written, I feel that I know them well. The scenery is so perfectly described, I felt like I was actually watching a film. Ali Spooner is a natural for showing the reader rather than telling them. I could almost smell the horses, the scent of the rodeo and feel the Texas heat.

Both Coal and Mary Leah have many sides to them and are backed up by a cast of excellent characters to take the story forward to it’s satisfactory conclusion. Having said that, I feel this could be a great series. These characters have a lot more to tell us and are too nice not to see again.

This book started out as a novella, so anyone who thinks they may have read it would be half right. This is now a full length book with lots more added and a page turner right the way through.

As always when I’ve finished an Ali Spooner book, I eagerly await her next one.


Monday, 3 November 2014

Sharpshooter by Leslie Murray

Ex Marine scout sniper, Captain Seven Michelis, is now a top notch black ops sharpshooter with an impressive record. The US government branch she’s currently working for is tasked with putting an end to terrorism. Unfortunately, her current mission to eradicate a financier who has been bank rolling terrorist groups goes horribly wrong. The team are ambushed and Seven is injured and running for her life.

Doctor Jenny MacKenzie is a Peace Corps volunteer. There is a surprise in store for them both when Jenny meets and helps the badly injured Seven. Jenny and Seven end up on the run trying to survive the dangers of Bolivia and a cold blooded killer who will leave no stone unturned to find them both.

With no idea who they can trust, their lives are fraught with danger. Even if they manage to reach home, what awaits them, or who awaits them? The attraction between the two women is intense, but will they survive long enough to see where it leads?

This debut book is without a doubt a blockbuster. The well written story is a mixture of danger, adventure, excitement, intrigue and romance all perfectly portioned out so that one does not overshadow the other. Primarily this is an adventure story, but there is a tender sweet romance integrated in with it. The book was a touch on the slow side to begin with, but it soon picked up pace and clipped along nicely. Once the story picked up pace, it was a roller coaster ride of ups and downs, twists and turns. Although the book is lengthy, I couldn’t put it down until exhaustion overcame me. Even then I was up early to get stuck into to it again. It’s an edge of the seat page turner right the way through.

Both main characters are strong women in different ways. Seven is the tough guy, at the top of her game. Jenny is more feminine, strong and an excellent doctor. Together they make a formidable pair, complementing each other with their different strengths. There is a wealth of secondary characters interspersed throughout, all enhancing the story in their own ways. They are all fully formed, multi-layered and essential to the story. The scenic settings are so vividly described I felt as though I was living the story with the characters. A true sign for me of good penmanship.

I’m looking forward to reading more from Leslie Murray in the future. A sequel would be nice too.


Sunday, 2 November 2014


Hi all,

After several years writing reviews and hundreds of reviews later, I’ve decided the time has come for me to take time for myself and my family and retire. The December reviews will be my last offerings.

The pressure over the last few years to ‘just fit me in’, ‘how can one more make a difference?’ has finally got to me. I have to say that most people have been very supportive and understanding. For the most part, I’ve derived great pleasure from helping author’s sell their books and readers to find new books. There are other reasons too, but I won’t go into them here.

To those of you who have been generous to a fault with your books and your encouragement to carry on, thank you very much. I’ve met some wonderful people along the way, a lot of whom will remain my lifelong friends. You all know who you are.

I’ll still be around and I may put out the odd review here and there of a book I particularly liked or even disliked. But, there won’t be an abundance of reviews and I won’t be accepting books for review anymore.


Second Thoughts by Jade Winters

When Melissa’s partner Sara, the love of her life walked away from her four years earlier to pursue her career in America, Melissa was devastated. It was only in the last six months that she’d been able to put the past mostly behind her and move on with her life. Melissa is now engaged to Bettina.

Unfortunately for Melissa, Sara shows up unexpectedly causing Melissa to have serious doubts and to question her love for Bettina. All the familiar feelings and desires come rushing back to her. What on earth can she do? She’s committed to marry Bettina now and can’t let her down.

Bettina is hiding a secret of her own. Which if revealed may cast further doubts in Melissa’s mind.

This is a time when Melissa should be ecstatically happy, her wedding is fast looming, as is the insemination date for impregnating Bettina. Instead, Melissa is profoundly unhappy and her life is disintegrating around her.

As well as Sara’s return, Melissa’s sister Eli discovers a deep, dark family secret which rears up to cast further anguish for them all. Will the pain never end?

Will Melissa marry Bettina? Or will Sara win her heart back again?

As with each new Jade Winters book, this has now become my firm favorite, at least until the next book. This romance with an unexpected twist, is well written and is a page turner from the very first sentence right through to the last. The story had me sitting on the edge of my seat feverishly ripping through the pages until I reached the end. The suspense was spellbinding and the intrigue intense.

Melissa had a hard choice to make. In her head, she knew what she should do, but what is she to do when her heart was telling her to do something different? This book had me actually rooting for one person and then changing my mind as the story progressed. I won’t add in any spoilers, that wouldn’t be right, but nothing is as it seems in this story, which is what made it such an emotionally charged book to read.

Usually there are two or maybe three main characters. But, I feel that almost all of these characters are main characters. All are multi-faceted and well written. They seamlessly interact with one another to progress the story along at a really nice pace. All play a huge part in the Melissa, Bettina, Sara love triangle and are essential to the plot.

One of the many things I love about Jade Winters books is that I can identify with the characters. They are real to me, everyday people we have as friends and acquaintances and I can lose myself totally in their stories. The settings are everyday settings, easy to visualize with Jade’s way of showing the reader instead of telling them.

From the first book I read of Jade’s and up to this last one, I can see how her writing has improved. Her storytelling has earned her the title of master storyteller on my list of excellent and worthy authors. Jade’s name is up there with some of the biggest names in lesbian fiction as a ‘must buy, must read’, for me. I eagerly await her next book.


Memoirs Of The Happy Lesbian Housewife by Lorraine Howell

This was a difficult book to write my usual conventional review on. I usually write a synopsis first, being careful not to give away too much information. Then the next part is what I think of the writing, characters, settings and the story. Well, this book had me stumped as to how to write this review. It’s not like it’s a conventional romance or any other genre. In fact, this book is unlike any I’ve read before. So, I’m simply going to tell you what I thought this hilarious, zany, whacky book of memoirs.

This wouldn’t normally be a book I’d choose to read. Mainly because I’m not a lover of comedic writing and I don’t always ‘comprehend’ American humor. But, I’m so pleased I gave it a chance. I enjoyed it immensely. There really is no difference in the laugh out loud moments between this book and a book written by an English author. It’s not only the written humor, but the visualization of the antics of the person’s concerned that had me curled up with laughter.

It sounds strange, but I only had to read the names of some of these characters to be highly amused and sniggering. I mean, who has a name like Sweetie? Then there is Bubba, Buddy and Sissy, all integrated into a maelstrom of delightful hilarity and interactions.

I would advise you to not read this in public and not to read it in bed. (You’ll be too wide awake to sleep afterwards and your partner will not be happy with the sniggers and guffaws you’ll be making). Also, DO NOT read this whilst eating or drinking, that would be a health hazard. Lorraine Howell should have put a health warning in this book for all the afore mentioned reasons.

If you are looking for some light hearted reading and a good laugh, this is the book for you. It’s well written, extremely witty and complete delight to read. I’m looking forward to more exploits from the lesbian housewife soon.


As Years Go By by Harper Bliss

When Jodie attends her son’s graduation ceremony, she is taken completely by surprise to see her ex partner Leigh there. Jodie’s break up with Leigh was painful. All the raw feelings and emotions come rushing back to her.

Circumstances cause Jodie to open herself up again to Leigh. Whether she’s doing the right thing though, remains to be seen.

Soon Jodie and Leigh are reliving old memories and making new ones in an explosive and intense passionate way. But, what will happen after that one night?

As always with any Harper Bliss story, this is well written and edited, hot, sweet, tender and erotic and actually has a great storyline unlike some erotica books. Both Jodie and Leigh are mature, fully formed, multidimensional characters. Although this story is primarily focusing on the two of them, there are some good secondary characters that are bolstering up their story.

The fact that Jodie and Leigh had parted ways eleven years previously, really wasn’t obvious by the way they seemed to pick up where they left off. In other words, they appear to be made for each other.

There is an element of mystery and intrigue in the beginning too. No spoilers from me though. But, suffice it to say, although this is a novella, there is a lot packed into it.

It would be nice to see Jodie and Leigh back again in another novella, short story or even a book.

If you are looking for a short erotic read, look no further. You’ve found it.


To Love Free by Chris Paynter

Famous artist, Madison Lorraine hasn’t picked up a paint brush in over three years. Not since she lost her wife and muse Callie to an aggressive form of uterine cancer. Madison and their nine year old daughter Mo are still living in their house in Islamorada, Florida, trying to come to terms with their tragic loss.

Top notch model, Gabrielle Valenci, has left New York and a dying relationship with her girlfriend Eva, to stay in her home in Islamorada to finish the last of her chemotherapy treatment. Her uterine cancer was caught early, her outlook is positive. The treatments however are debilitating. Her arrival has an unsettling effect on Madison, bringing back memories of Callie’s unsuccessful battle with cancer.

When a playful dolphin puts in appearance in their cove, little did Madison or Gabrielle know what a profound affect he was going to have on their lives. Each time the dolphin, (Mo named him Free) shows up he pushes them closer together.

When Madison starts taking Gabrielle to her treatments, their affection for each other grows as does their attraction. Both women, for different reasons, are wary of becoming involved with each other.

Will Madison be able to put aside her fears and learn to trust in the power of love again? Will Gabrielle trust that her cancer will not be a factor in who she loves and who loves her?

One beautiful, worldly wise dolphin named Free will be showing them the path and the light.

This book is extremely well written. Almost poetic. It’s heart aching and heart breaking, but has a wonderful uplifting spiritual aura and love entwined throughout. Although cancer is central to the story, it’s a beautifully, sympathetically written testament to anyone who has had any dealings with this dreadful disease. The message here is that cancer need not be a killer. The earlier this disease is caught, the better the chances of survival.

Two very different women, Madison and Gabrielle, have to come to terms with surviving not only the cancer, but the aftermath of it’s destruction. Madison who lost her beloved wife to cancer has to battle her own demons from her grief and loss. Gabrielle who is just finishing up her final chemotherapy treatments with her ravaged body, who doesn’t see herself as being attractive to anyone, must take a second look at herself.

Both Madison and Gabrielle are attracted to each other. But, Madison feels like she’s betraying Callie and Gabrielle has to look beyond her scars, weight loss and hair loss. It’s their journey here that we read about.

This isn’t a story to take lightly, but it’s not all doom and gloom either. It’s a story about survival, second chances, love and hope too. Hope for a future after cancer. A story of how cancer has affected a family and how they struggle out of the mire with the support of family and friends. A story of getting one’s life back, beating cancer and kicking it out.

I know Chris Paynter has first hand knowledge of this awful disease, a disease that has no respect for age or gender. I admire her for being able to write this book. Chris is a superb writer and master storyteller. Her books are a delight to read.

I will read this book again, it’s characters are too loveable not to meet again. Especially Mo and Free.


Love Is Enough by Cindy Rizzo

Angie Antonelli’s life is well ordered and going smoothly. Her political career is jogging along steadily, she has a loving family backing her every step of the way and some fantastic close friends she’s known since college. There is one thing Angie’s missing and dearly wants, a loving relationship with her dream woman.

Jan Clifford has a top notch job in her family’s investment company. After breaking up with her previous girlfriend, she’s currently taking a break from dating. That is, until she’s set up on a date to go sailing with Angie and meets her.

Both Angie and Jan are immediately smitten with one another. The pull of attraction is there from the beginning, it’s magnetic and draws them close together quickly. But, Angie and Jan are from two very different worlds. Angie fights for the underdogs, Jan is the financier moving in the country club, rich elite sets. Just like Cinderella and Prince Charming, their backgrounds couldn’t be more different.

Their fledgling relationship has hardly got off the ground, when Angie’s ex lover, Nicky, the woman who had shattered her heart fourteen years earlier, appears on the scene. To further add to Angie’s distress, her world of politics and Jan’s in finance comes crashing together creating havoc for them both. Jan refuses to forgo a lucrative business deal that could over throw Angie’s re-election and her second term in congress, which of course, impacts on their relationship.

Will their love be strong enough to keep them together? Will Angie put her political career before her love for Jan? Will Jan reconsider her position and see things from Angie’s point of view?

The romantics amongst us would say that love is enough. To find out if this is true for Angie and Jan, you have to read their story.

When I read Cindy Rizzo’s first book, Exception To The Rule, I immediately knew it begged for a sequel. Here it is. I wondered if Cindy would be able to top her debut book, she has topped it and exceeded it. Love Is Enough is superb. There is no need to read Exception To The Rule first, there is more than enough background for this book to standalone. But, why deny yourself the pleasure of another excellent book? Exception To The Rule focused on the college days of Robin and Tracy with Angie as prominent third character. This story focuses on Angie and newcomer, Jan, and is set when all women are well settled in their careers some years later.

Angie is a politician, so it goes without saying that there is a fair bit of politics in the story. But, it doesn’t over power the budding romance between Angie and Jan. The balance in my opinion, is just right. I don’t know an awful lot about American politics, other than watching the entire series of West Wing, so I can’t possibly comment on this aspect of the story. But, I enjoyed the whole book very much and couldn’t put it down.

When two different worlds collide, all sorts of problems ensue. Do Angie and Jan sort out their differences? Or is there simply too much of a division between their worlds?

Angie and Jan are backed up by a cast of wonderfully well formed secondary characters, including Robin and Tracy. Angie’s mom is a delight to read about too.

I tore through this book in my haste to find out how it ended. I’ve put it in my re-read folder for a slower read to savor the story and the characters.

If you are looking for a well written book with a great story, filled with politics, intrigue, discrimination, romance, wonderfully described settings and much more, look no further. This is it.


If I Were A Boy by Erin O'Reilly

Katie McGuire’s life seems perfect to the outside world. She has a husband who idolizes her, a great job she loves and she wants for nothing. Yet, Katie feels she’s missing something.

Top notch financial director of a high class investment company, Helen Swenson, is married to an unfaithful, bad tempered man and does not have many friends.

Once a year Katie and Helen’s husbands take their wives on a vacation to Padre Island National Seashore to reunite with their old Air Force Pilot Squad. This annual meeting becomes the highlight of the year for Katie and Helen. Both women feel the overwhelming pull of attraction until at last they are powerless to resist it. They give in and their love making is explosive, awakening feelings in them both they have never previously experienced. Hiding their love is becoming impossible. Will their affair last or will it be just another vacation dalliance? Once they return home, will regrets begin to surface?

Even if Katie and Helen are willing to pull out all stops to make a go of a life together, they are both still married. Plus others around them may use their influence to destroy their love for each other. Will their love be strong enough to survive?

Doubts, family misgivings, homophobia and pressures upon them may well try to convince them their love is wrong. But will Katie and Helen stand fast and prove them all wrong?

I always enjoy anything written by Erin O’Reilly. Each of her books is so very different from others. So, it’s always a delight to see what is between the covers of her new books. Erin has certainly written a blockbuster story this time around.

Both Katie and Helen are fully developed, multidimensional characters. They are bolstered up by a strong cast of secondary characters all equally as well formed. Some of these characters are so obnoxious that I wanted to slap them. But, they are so true to real life. I’ve met many like them.

This story goes far beyond a simple ‘finding one’s new sexual identity’ and being a run of the mill romance. It’s full to the brim with things like love, passion, hate, acceptance, violence, homophobia, family issues and much more. But, unlike some other books in this genre, the story is told with tenderness and a deep understanding.

Katie and Helen are two women, unhappy in their lives and searching for something. Although in the beginning neither woman is sure what is missing from their lives. When they find out what is missing, their pent up emotions take them both completely by surprise. Thus begins the crux of the story in this book. This is all I’m going to say about the actual story. No spoilers here. But, suffice it to say, this book, in my honest opinion, is a cut above the rest in it’s genre.

So, without further delay, I urge you not to miss out. Another for my re-read folder. Oh, and I’m really looking forward to Erin’s next book. Sooner rather than later would be great. Please!


Sunday, 19 October 2014

Once The Clouds Have Gone by KE Payne

When eighteen year old Tag Grainger left her home in the small Scottish town of Balfour she’d grown up in, little did she know it would be nine long years before she would return. When Tag does return, it’s under a cloud after the sudden death of her father.

Tag is thrown back into a life she never thought she’d have again. The fact that Tag has inherited a half share of the family business with her antagonistic brother Blair, almost sends Tag running back to her home in Liverpool.

Tag’s brother Blair, can’t forgive her for running out on the family. Her beloved nephew, Magnus who was five when she left, doesn’t remember her and to top it all, the townsfolk are all talking about how she ran off and speculating as to the reasons why. All Tag yearns for is to escape back to her mundane life in England.

When Tag and cafe manager Freddie Metcalfe meet, Tag feels the pull of attraction between them. Whilst Freddie is helping Tag take stock of her life, her family and the business, her own life isn’t running so smoothly. Freddie is hiding secrets of her own and trying to mend her own broken heart. The last thing Freddie needs is another heart break. Letting Tag in may do just that.

Will Freddie be able to help Tag with her family and the ailing business? Will Freddie be able to open up her heart? Will Tag listen to reason? Or will she run away once again? Will the clouds finally clear leaving the sun shining down on them both?

I’ve read most of KE Payne’s young adult books and thoroughly enjoyed them. This book is different. It’s a beautifully written story centering round a family with all the upheavals that can occur within families and a tender sweet, would be romance running through it.

The family described could be any regular family, the characters could be any of our friends, they are so real. I totally managed to lose myself in this story and from the scenic descriptions, lived it alongside of them all. This is the difference between the art of showing the reader and telling them. KE Payne has excelled herself with this book. I’ll be very, very surprised if it doesn’t win an award.

Both Tag and Freddie are flawed women in different ways. Both have been hurt in the past. Both need to let go of their pasts to enable them to move on and have a future, either together or not as the case may be. It’s their background stories that makes this present day story real and true to life. Their stories could happen to anyone. There is nothing remotely far fetched about them at all. As with all families, there are ups and downs. This is a real roller coaster ride of ups and downs, thrills and spills. A book I enjoyed from start to finish and could not put down.

As much as I enjoy KE Payne’s young adult books, I hope she will consider writing another adult romance soon. This book deserves it’s place amongst my favorite books in my re-read folder.

Friday, 17 October 2014

Reece's Faith by TJ Vertigo

Bar owner, Reece Corbett and actress, Faith Ashford from Private Dancer are back in another amazing episode in their lives.

Their relationship is going from strength to strength. As they set out on new paths exploring new ground, so their sex lives and understanding of one another gets better and better, cementing their relationship strongly together in a newly discovered intimacy.

As time goes by, Reece learns she can fully trust Faith and shares with her the story of how she became The Animal. This in turn gives Faith new strength and the continuing hope for their relationship to have the happy ever after ending she craves.

Unfortunately a glitch occurs in the form of the green eyed monster, jealousy, when Faith has to kiss a man on her television show and Reece is stalked by two sex crazed women. How will both women react to the others jealousies?

The icing on the cake is when Faith is outed on television as a lesbian. This brings her parents hurtling onto the scene and all hell breaks loose. Faith discovers things about her parents that are an eye opener for her. Will Faith’s parents accept her and Reece’s relationship and what will the consequences be?

Another well written, well edited, hot and erotic book from TJ Vertigo with some of the wonderful characters from Private Dancer. There is no need to have read Private Dancer first. This book will totally standalone. But, I would strongly advise you not to miss out on another wonderful book with the beginning of Reece and Faith’s story.

I love these characters, Reece is hot headed and would seem to be as hard as nails, yet has a soft and vulnerable streak that no one gets to see very often. Faith is soft and gentle, yet, she has a strength that comes to the fore front when it’s needed and is fiercely protective of Reece. Both characters are multi-faceted and are backed up by a wonderful cast of strong secondary characters enhancing the story and progressing it through to the end.

I’ve read everything I can get my hands on that TJ Vertigo has written. I love her stories and her writing style. The fact that I know her books are chock full of romance and erotic hot sex scenes has me wishing she would write much faster and publish a lot more books. Although this is a fairly long book, it still wasn’t long enough for me. But, I’m not too worried, there is a sequel due out soon. As always with one of TJ’s books, it’s in my favorites folder to be read time again.


Nesting by Renee MacKenzie

Macy Stokes is divorced and is the mother of six year old Jeremiah. She’s also struggling with her feelings towards other women.

When one of Macy’s friends needs help, she doesn’t for one moment think that helping them out may cause her ex husband, Jack, to challenge her custody of their son.

Nineteen year old Cam Webber, not long out of high school, sets out to reconnect with her Aunt Jess and arrives in Augusta, Georgia unannounced hoping to stay with her aunt. Unfortunately for Cam, this is not possible. But Cam is desperate to hang around and gain the approval of her aunt’s partner, Sharon.

Along the way, Cam becomes enamored with Macy. But, Macy doesn’t want to know. She’s set her sights elsewhere.

Kenny Brewer loves his eccentric wife, Dorianne. Even though her behavior is getting more bizarre by the day. Dorianne becomes obsessed with a local woman and believes she is her half sister, causing all sorts of mayhem.

Unfortunately, it transpires that Dorianne has a medical problem that will impact on her, Kenny and their friends.

I’ve enjoyed Renee MacKenzie’s other books, so I wasn’t at all surprised that this book was enjoyable also. It’s certainly different from her other writings. The book is well written and edited and although I felt the beginning was a little slow, it soon picked up pace and continued along at a nice steady clip. The story itself is full of ups and downs, twists and turns and has surprises, drama, love and intrigue along the way. Just when I thought I had everything figured out, so the story would veer off in another exciting direction.

I love the characters, although, I must say it took a while for me to warm up to Macy. But, she grew on me. The characters are all well developed and are essential to the story. The things I particularly liked about this story, is the diversity of the characters, the scenic settings and the fact that the events in this book could actually happen. These are ordinary characters we could be interacting with everyday as part of our lives, characters with every day problems we can relate to.

So, if you are looking for a read that is different and refreshing, look no further, you’ve found it.


Friday, 3 October 2014

Shadows of the Heart by Patty G Henderson

When Annalee Stewart lost her upper crust status due to her fathers gambling and subsequent suicide, her godmother begrudgingly took her in. After her death, Annalee was fortunate to secure a post as companion to the young and frail Lady Lenore Blackstone. Although no longer wealthy and part of the elite rich society,  Annalee considers herself fortunate to have a home, even though she is in service. England was really no place for unmarried women without means in the 1820’s.

Unfortunately, Annalee finds herself in a dangerous situation. Premeditated murder, shady characters in a dark and dismal world throws Annalee headlong into the role of Lenore’s protector. Annalee and Lenore grow very close and Annalee fights her growing attraction to Lenore, a woman she can never have. Lenore however welcomes Annalee’s love and attentions and encourages them, putting them both in imminent danger from Lenore’s husband, the Earl of Blackstone.

The Earl’s sister, Victoria is enamored with Annalee. She flirts unashamedly with her and Annalee finds herself responding. This confuses Annalee, as her heart belongs to Lenore. But, deep down she knows Lenore is unavailable and as much as she yearns for her, Lenore will never be hers. What will happen in this ill fated triangle of love and deceptions? Annalee must sort out her feelings and passions.

When Annalee’s life is threatened within the walls of Blackstone Castle and after love and great loss, Annalee must make choices. Who to believe, who to trust and most of all, who to give her heart to.

Another well written winner in the gothic historical romance book titles from the Queen of dark, dangerous and intrigue, Patty G Henderson. A page turner from start to finish. This is written in the true style of the old gothic romances from yesteryear, with one difference, instead of heroes and heroines, we have heroines only. A dark, brooding castle, a touch of danger and intrigue, wonderful characters, mix them altogether and you have spine chilling, thrilling perfection. Throw into the mix, illicit love, a love triangle with three gorgeous women, beautiful scenic descriptions, a story set in the 1820’s and you have gothic romance at it’s very best.

All of the characters are well fleshed out and fully developed, multidimensional, easy to get to know and like, or dislike as the case maybe. But most of all, they interact well together, the dialogue is easily understood and the story seamlessly flows along and kept this reader on the edge of her seat throughout.

If you like a bit of spice in your romances, this is highly spiced in parts. Red hot and deliciously decadent, yet tasteful and tender. Not too much to overwhelm the reader, just right in proportion.

This is the fourth book in Patty’s gothic historical romance series. Each story is as gripping as the last. This book is no exception, even though Passion For Vengeance is an award winning book. I expect the same for this book. I’m now eagerly looking forward to the fifth gothic romance book. Well, any book from Patty G Henderson will be most welcome. I’ve added this to my re-read folder to savor time and again.


Wednesday, 1 October 2014

All You Can Eat by Ed's Andi Marquette and R.G Emanuelle

Short stories

This is a food themed collection of short stories written by some of my favorite authors. Ashley Bartlett, Historia, Rebekah Weatherspoon, Cheyenne Blue, Karis Walsh, Victoria Oldham, Cheri Crystal, Andi Marquette, R.G Emanuelle, Sacchi Green and last but by no means least, Yvonne Heidt.

The stories range from light romance, (appetizers) slightly hotter romance, (entrees) through to sizzling hot erotica, (desserts). At the end of each story there is a recipe. In some cases the recipe has been used in the story, in others they are just garnishes, no cooking needed at all. Food and sex go hand in hand, so it’s no surprise that this collection is tasty and tempting in more ways than one. Something here to whet every readers appetite, leaving this reader hungry for more.

Each of these stories is well written. Of course, like any book of short stories, there were some stories I enjoyed more than others. But, unlike other books, there wasn’t one story I disliked. Each story is superbly different to each of the others.

If you are looking for a well put together and edited book of hot short stories, with some wonderful characters, look no further. You’ve found it.  


Still Life by L.T Smith

Jess Taylor broke up with her partner Samantha because of her cheating womanizing ways. Enough was enough, never again would she allow herself to be used and cheated on. After the break up, Jess becomes somewhat of a recluse. Staying home, in bed by 9.30 and curled up with a book. Yes, much safer than setting herself up for another heart break.

Jess’s best friend Sophie Harrison has other ideas. She decides that Jess has been off the radar long enough, it’s time for her to re-join the land of the living. Sophie enrols them both in a Still Life art class at the nearby college. Sophie is determined that Jess and the gorgeous art teacher, Diana Sullivan, will hit it off and hook up. It doesn’t hurt that Sophie is interested in Diana’s brother, Dave, either.

But, will art be enough to pull Jess and Diana together? There are twelve sessions of the art class to find out whether Jess will be able to put the past behind her, be brave enough to open up her heart and give love another chance.

I’ve read most of L.T Smith’s books and can honestly say I’ve enjoyed them all and never been disappointed. This book is no exception. In fact, it has become my new favorite of hers.

As always, with any L.T Smith book, it is well written and edited, a page turner from start to finish and both serious and hilarious in parts. Mostly set in and around Manchester, England, the dialect is slightly different to the usual American books I read and review. But, I don’t think our overseas friends will have a problem understanding it.

There are three multidimensional main characters, Jess, her best friend Sophie and Jess’s love interest Diana. They are joined by a brilliant cast of secondary characters all playing their parts to perfection. Even the despicable Lauren played her part exceptionally well. Not that I’m adding in any spoilers, but she’s the one person in a book a reader loves to hate.

This is obviously a romance and the story follows the tried, tested and successful girl meets girl, girl loses girl and gets girl again formula. It’s the journey the characters take in this book that sets it so far apart from a lot of similar romance books. Set in the art world, there is a mix of love, angst, and a wonderful laugh out loud humor throughout. The fact that Jess and Diana are flawed women and each have unhappy pasts adds into the intrigue. The push and pull of will they won’t they get together, will they won’t they stay together, will Jess get her act together is what kept me feverishly turning the pages through to the end.

I’m looking forward to more from LT Smith soon.


Hero Worship by Rebekah Matthews

Valerie’s one hope and desire is to have a hero. Someone she can worship and who can rescue her from her unexciting mundane existence. When Valerie was growing up, her hero was Xena Warrior Princess. Xena is a hard act to follow and now Valerie’s grown up, she’s looking for her own real life Xena.

In this collection of stories, we see Valerie’s search for love. Trying to find her happy ever after, all consuming love. We follow Valerie’s progress, her highs and her lows, as she approaches her teens through to her thirties.

Valerie has to contend with many things and many different situations. There is her mother’s mysterious illness, her teenage step sister’s relationship with an older married man, her various jobs and many other situations she finds herself in. Valerie’s escapades are vast and various with never a dull moment as Valerie tries desperately to marry her childhood hopes and dreams with reality. Will Valerie ever find her hero? Or is she asking for too much?

A nice little collection of stories all linked together following Valerie’s pursuit for her hero. Valerie is a multidimensional, yet flawed character. This book tracks Valerie in the many guises of relationships between two women. It goes far beyond simply sex. Valerie has all sorts of different relationships with many different women. Straight, platonic, maternal, Christian and family.

I found some of the book a little hard to follow when it veered between the past and the present in places. But on the whole I enjoyed the stories.

I can’t attest to the editing as the copy I read from hadn’t had it’s final edit. But, what I can say is this copy was fairly clean, so I have no reason not to trust that the published copy is good. 


A Sister's Wish by Jennis Slaughter

Navy SEAL, Chief Petty Officer, Sydney Martin, is serving overseas when she gets a distinct feeling something is wrong with her twin sister, Sasha. Pain and foreboding fill Sydney’s whole being. She instinctively knows something terrible has happened to Sasha.

When Sydney gets the official news of Sasha’s murder, she flies back home to Canada, intent on finding out what happened and who murdered her beloved sister.

A delayed text from Sasha asking Sydney to protect something sends Sydney on a mission to fulfil Sasha’s wishes.

On Sydney’s arrival in Canada, she meets Sasha’s best friend, top notch computer programmer, Chance O’Neill. Sydney and Chance had no way of knowing they would fall head over heels in love and end up on the run whilst trying to unravel the mystery Sasha was working on and in turn solve her murder.

Will Sydney and Chance find the truth before the truth finds them and silences them both forever?

This is the first book I’ve read written by Jennis Slaughter. What could have been a riveting page turner was unfortunately marred by several things. First of all, the editing was bad. There were numerous typos throughout that simply pulled me out of the story. The second point was the over use of the two main characters jobs, constantly seeing the SEAL and the programmer really grated on my nerves. The third major point was the amount of sex scenes. I’m fully aware that in a new relationship, sex is in abundance and I do enjoy a red hot sex scene in a book. But, this gratuitous sex was a page filler. This in turn added endless pages of fluff to what would otherwise have been a really good story. I ended up skipping through the numerous repetitive sex scenes to get to the actual story.

If you like sex scenes in abundance, don’t mind the bad editing and the annoyance of not using the characters names, the story is reasonable.


Starting Over by Jen Silver

Ellie Winters hasn’t always had an easy life in the past. Even now her life, although it’s in order, isn’t running smoothly. It’s about to get even bumpier too. Ellie lives on a remote farm on Starling Hill that she inherited from her deceased parents. She lives with her recently ex lover, Robin Fanshawe.

Robin loves the ladies, lots of them and has been unfaithful to Ellie on numerous occasions, which is why they are no longer lovers. They do have a truce though, none of Robin’s women are to visit the farm. Unfortunately a woman Robin has been seeing is about to shatter their pact when she arrives on the farm to stay. This is the beginning of a chain of events which will change both Ellie and Robin’s lives forever.

Archaeologist, Professor Doctor Kathryn Moss, Ellie’s ex lover, also arrives on the farm, hoping Ellie will allow her and her team of university students to begin a dig in her field. Ellie agrees. But, will the field be the only thing being dug up? Or will Kathryn and Ellie dig up their past relationship putting an end forever into Ellie and Robin’s truce and any hopes of a reconciliation?

Will Robin realize the error of her ways and infidelities and put her ‘love them and leave them’ past behind her? Will Ellie even consider having Robin back in her life as her lover?

Who is the royal buried on Starling Hill?

History, romance, intrigue, mystery, infidelity, love and loss are all entwined together in this wonderfully well written, fast paced, debut romance from the pen of new lesfic author Jen Silver.

I had the pleasure of reading a short story written by Jen and thoroughly enjoyed it. I thought from reading that story that Jen would be capable of great things. Now I know for sure she’s capable of great things having read and thoroughly enjoyed her debut novel. I found myself flying through the pages at break neck speed to find out how the story ended. Which was okay, because I then started the book again and read it more slowly to make notes for this review. No surprises that I enjoyed it just as much, if not more the second time round when I could savor the story properly.

My favorite character was Ellie. Long suffering until she took charge of her life. Once she did, Robin found herself on the other side of the fence finding out what Ellie had put up with for years. I don’t want to go into any details of the story, or put in any spoilers. But suffice it to say, that this book is an emotionally charged roller coaster of ups and downs, twists and turns. Angst one minute and laugh out loud the next.

This is a story which grabbed me from the beginning. Both Ellie and Robin have their faults and flaws. It’s their journey on the path of love in this story that shows how love can conquer almost anything. But, it also shows that relationships have to be worked on and the course of true love doesn’t always run smoothly.

Will Robin and Ellie get back together? Or has their ship sailed? You’ll have to read this to find out.


Pigeon Post by Jae

A short story

Submissive Wrasa wolf shape shifter, Kelsey, has always obeyed her superiors. But when she receives a letter from Madsen, the Wrasa’s alpha, Kelsey isn’t sure she’ll be able to comply with his unusual latest orders. Madsen and the new Wrasa PR company want a big celebration in the form of a Wrasa Pride Parade in Washington D.C to celebrate the one year anniversary of their involuntary worldwide coming out to the human public. They want Kelsey to head the parade.

For those of you who haven’t read any of this series, wolf-shifter Kelsey lives with her partner, Rue who is human and her adopted son Danny, who is Wrasa. One year has gone by since Kelsey ‘outed’ the Wrasa to the world. The object of the big parade is to show the world how harmless the Wrasa are. The antics that follow on in this story are very amusing and entertaining.

There is no need to have read any of this series first, this short story stands alone well. But, I defy you to not rush to buy them right away. I love these multidimensional characters and their stories.

The story is a bit longer than some shorts, but Jae is well known for penning epics. It goes without saying Pigeon Post is well written and a page turner from start to finish, a story to enjoy more than once.


Monday, 15 September 2014

Twisted Lives by Ali Spooner

As Bet is fleeing from her abusive husband with her four year old daughter, Kylie, her car breaks down. It is a twist of fate that it should happen right outside the entrance to the home of property developer, Alex Graves.

When Alex arrives home and sees Bet’s plight and the lovely little munchkin, Kylie, asleep in the passenger seat, Alex is spurred into action. She offers Bet and Kylie her hospitality and the run of her home.

Alex and Bet had no way of knowing that this simple act of kindness would change their lives forever. Unfortunately for them all, as well as bringing them love, it also brings danger to their door.

I’ve read many books by master storyteller, Ali Spooner and have thoroughly enjoyed each one. Ali’s writing is what I call ‘my go to comfort reads’. I simply can’t read her books just once. Her stories and characters resonate with me long after I’ve finished reading her books.

This story is a romance, a page turner that hooked me in from the very first page and kept me enthralled through to the last page. A sweet and tender, heart warming love story, that is sizzling hot in parts, with a touch of angst and humor too. The romance between Bet and Alex begins almost immediately. Virtually love at first sight. Bet, Alex and the loveable four year old, going on twenty year old, Kylie are the three main characters. They are backed up by a strong cast of secondary characters each essential to the progression of this well written, fast paced story. I made the big mistake of starting this book late one night. I’ll never learn! I couldn’t put it down, so it was another late night.

As with all of Ali’s books I’ve read so far, the story is never simply ‘just one theme’, as in this case, just ‘another romance’. There is a brilliant storyline apart from the romance that runs through the book with a touch of intrigue throughout, whetting the readers appetite for more. 

This is a nice length book, but still not long enough for me. I wanted much more. I’m hoping for a sequel or at the very least a novella or short story to see what is next in the lives of Alex, Bet and Kylie. These characters are far too precious not to visit them again. 


Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Destination Alara by S.Y Thompson

Vanessa Swann, (Van), veteran of the Gothoan war, has her first starship command as a newly promoted Captain. It’s the twenty fourth century and although technology has vastly changed, deviousness, greed and war amongst the species hasn’t.

Van is searching the outer reaches of the galaxy for signs of rebel activity when she finds herself unexpectedly teamed up with Admiral/Princess Cade Meryan. Cade is the leader of the Coalitions flag ship and heir to the throne of Alara.

Van has always been a player, one for loving and leaving the ladies. Now she’s smitten with Cade’s beauty. But, it would be unprofessional of her to pursue her attraction, plus she feels Cade may be a little out of her league.

When faced with numerous attempts on Cade’s life, Van needs a clear head to keep her safe. With the threat of a galactic war and the safety of millions of people to look out for, Van’s work is cut out and it is not going to be an easy task to keep Cade from harm.

Both Van’s and Cade’s lives will never be the same again as the battle to defeat the enemy begins.

I’ve read some of SY Thompson’s books before and I’ve enjoyed them all. I’m not a great fan of sci/fi, but I have to say this book exceeded all my expectations. It’s well written and an edge of the seat page turner from the first page right through to the last. There are so many ups and downs and twists and turns, it’s like being on a roller coaster ride that is full of exhilaration and excitement.

SY Thompson has created a fantastic, easy to visualize, descriptively scenic world set in the twenty fourth century. Although the technology has far advanced, the reader is still able to understand exactly what is happening and visualize it, and is not blinded by science. Throughout the book is a slow burning, hot, sweet and tender romance that may or may not get off the ground. But, it’s fun watching it develop and anticipating it’s outcome.

The two main characters, Van and Cade are multidimensional and are backed up by a wealth of wonderful secondary characters, each essential to the fast paced progression of the story through to it’s dramatic ending.

Although this book concluded, it would be really nice to have a sequel or a follow on story with these characters in this brilliant new world.


Monday, 1 September 2014

Malodorous by Del Robertson

Sequel to My Fair Maiden

Beautiful maiden, Gwen, thought her life would improve vastly after narrowly escaping being a virgin sacrifice and leaving her home village for pastures new. Unfortunately, when she arrives in Fairhaven, she finds the village stinks and it’s not down to the rather dubious mutton stew being served. Something is seriously amiss.

Handsome swordsman, Bodhi, as always, is looking for the next wench to add another notch to her bedpost. She has the pick when she ends up in Fairhaven.

After the tussle with the ogre and the way they’d parted, neither Gwen or Bodhi expected to meet again. But, here they are, trapped in the village of Fairhaven, with a killer at large.

Fairhaven is on a lockdown. The villagers are afraid. The guards are corrupt, who can be trusted? Then to top it all, the unthinkable occurs, Bodhi is arrested for murder. Who will help her prove her innocence? Is she innocent? Is this the end for Bodhi?

I loved Del Robertson’s My Fair Maiden and was hoping that there would be a sequel. This book is a pure delight to read. It’s a page turner from the first page through to the last page. The book will standalone, but I strongly advise reading My Fair Maiden first. Why miss out on another great book? Plus, it’s nice to get the background on Gwen and Bodhi and hear of their past adventures.

This is a true fairy tale read for adults and lovers of lesfic and it’s fast paced, with wonderfully scenic descriptions. The characters are all multidimensional and interact well together. There is a real laugh out loud humor throughout and some nicely placed romantic actions of a hot nature, just for good measure. We find the usual element of mystery and intrigue with mythical creatures that made the fairy tales of yesteryear unforgettable, as are these two books.

I’m hoping that we will see Gwen and Bodhi back again in another adventure soon.

For readers wanting the print version, Affinity have included both books in one volume. The ebooks are available to buy separately.


There Was A Time by Jen Silver

A short story

Fin lives in a seaside resort and works behind the bar of the Golden Dragon. The pub is busy in the summer months with holiday makers and Fin has her pick of women for hot liaisons in the dunes. During the slow winter evenings, Fin spends her time thinking about the following summer and wondering who she’ll end up in the dunes with.

On the night of an important darts match, a stranger walks into the bar and Fin’s life as she knows it is about to change forever. Fin is in love.

This is the first thing I’ve read by Jen Silver. I know she has a full length book due out soon, and if this story is anything to go by, I’m going to be first in line to read it.

This short story is well written, fast paced and has a lot packed into it. It is told entirely from Fin’s point of view, so we get to know a bit about her background and the type of person she is.

The characters are multi-faceted and down to earth, just like our everyday friends.

This is a story of how ones life can change in the blink of an eye when we least expect it. Love can strike any of us, at any moment and our dreams can come true.



Stay With Me by Lydia Rose

When forty year old financial adviser, Christine Harper, lost her partner Jackie in a boating accident after fifteen blissful, love filled years together, she’s devastated. Three years have passed, but Christine is still unable to come to terms with her loss, let alone move on. She feels she would be cheating on Jackie. Numerous attempts by her friends to set her up with single women are driving Christine to distraction. How many times can she say no before they take the hint?

When Laura Lerner, a client, and Christine meet, the two women become friends and also neighbors. Laura has recently lost her father and is deciding whether to sell his house in New Jersey or move back to New York. Laura is attracted to Christine and is ten years younger. Unfortunately for Laura, Christine makes it clear they can never be more than friends. That doesn’t stop Laura from hoping for more though.

Will Christine let go of the ghosts of the past? Or will Laura go back to New York ending any chance of anything more than friendship?

This is the first book I’ve read by Lydia Rose. Although the story was reasonable, the editing and grammatical errors took away a lot of the pleasure I would have got from this book. The characters are nice enough, the scenic descriptions are good, the book is scorching hot in places and the storyline is nicely paced, but the book ended a bit abruptly. Unless there is to be a sequel.

This book is a prime example of an author not using a decent editor. The errors are too numerous to count. There are words misspelt and misused, characters names mixed up and grammatical errors from the beginning. The book wasn’t exactly cheap here in the UK either. But, if you don’t mind all this, you may enjoy the story.


Deserted Echo by Linda Kay Silva

Echo Branson has her work and her patience stretched to it’s very limits in her latest adventure.

Echo is on vacation in the desert with her students from school. She agrees to a request to interview a member of the Mexican drug cartel. Unfortunately, Echo gets far more than she bargained for.

Echo and her friends find themselves embroiled in a web of lies and deceit, all wrapped up in mysteries unlike any they’ve come across before.

Add into the mix a band of evil supernaturals and soon Echo and her friends are fighting for their lives. Will good or evil reign supreme in the end?

Another well written, edge of the seat, page turner in this wonderful series written by the brilliant master storyteller, Linda Kay Silva. Every book I’ve ever read written by Linda is consistently great for story content, fabulous multidimensional characters, scenic descriptions and taking the reader on a roller coaster ride into uncharted territories. Her work is original and nothing like anything I’ve ever read before.

I’ve loved Echo Branson and her band of ‘supers’ since the very first episode, the stories have got more intense and more diverse as the series has progressed. Never a dull moment. This is a brilliant paranormal, adventure series with a dose of romance thrown in for good measure.

I’m not adding in any spoilers, but be prepared to be shocked, Linda has added twists and turns I never would have expected.

I’m looking forward to the next Echo adventure, hopefully in the not too distant future.  


French Lessons by Natalie Vivien

Chicago doctor, Vida Toujours has always worked hard for everything she has and has achieved. She is an all work and no play woman. She has a habit of pushing people away when they become too close, preferring to remain aloof and detached. But in the process, she is lonely.

When Vida receives a letter from France right out of the blue, she has no idea that her life is about to change forever.

Vida’s aunt, an aunt she never knew existed, has died. She’s left Vida her chateau in the countryside in France and a sizeable fortune. Vida is delighted. She resigns from her post at the hospital and flies out to France immediately.

Vida arrives at her chateau and it’s there she meets the beautiful and alluring Renée Chanson. Vida is enchanted and smitten with Renée. But, she’s unprepared for the all consuming mystery surrounding her family. Deep dark secrets begin to emerge. Will Vida open her heart and mind to love and trust Renée? Or will she do what her mother did decades before and run away, leaving the love of her life behind?

I’ve read several of Natalie Vivien’s books and find her books well written and edited and her storytelling pleasant and consistent. I’ve enjoyed all the stories I’ve read so far.

This book is a romance, with a mysterious theme running through it, although not a mystery book. The three main characters are multidimensional and easy to get to know. Although the story is primarily about Vida and the family she never knew, Renée is her romantic interest and Effie, a housekeeper of sorts adds a lot to the story.

The book is a fast paced page turner right the way through. Not too long, so I was able to finish it in one sitting. I’m looking forward to reading more from Natalie Vivien soon.