Category Archives: Contemporary Romance

Review: The Hot One by Lauren Blakely

About the book:

Ever notice that sometimes a guy will do something really stupid, like let the love of his life slip through his fingers? Yeah. I’m that guy. But the moment I run into the woman I once loved madly, I’ve got one goal and one goal only–a second chance. The plan? Go big or go home.
Fine, at first glance, stripping naked at my ex-girlfriend’s place of work might not seem like the brightest way to win her heart again. But trust me on this count–she always liked me best without any clothes on. And you’ve got to play to your strengths when you’re fighting an uphill battle. As a lawyer, I know how to fight, and I’m prepared to fight hard for her. Because sometimes you need a second chance at first love.

He’s the one who got away . . . 
The nerve of Tyler Nichols to reappear like that at my job, showing off his rock-hard body that drove me wild far too many nights. That man with his knowing grin and mischievous eyes is nothing but a cocky jerk to saunter back into my life. Except, what if he’s not . . .? I’ve tried like hell to forget him, but maybe I’m cursed to remember the guy I fell madly in love with eight years ago. Lord knows I’m not over him, so what’s the harm in giving him a week to prove he’s changed in the ways that matter? 

After all, how do you resist the hot one . . .?

My thoughts:

I loved this book! It is romantic, funny, and sexy.

Tyler regrets how he treated Delaney in the past. It wasn’t what he really wanted to do, but he broke-up with her in a terrible way. Eight years later, he wants a second chance. I loved Tyler’s determination to get Delaney back, but also to really apologize for the way he treated her. In trying to win her love again, they are both able to really move on from their break-up.

Delaney doesn’t let Tyler in easily. Even when he shows up at her work and literally bares himself. She hasn’t been able to forget him and isn’t sure if she can forgive him.

I loved the way these two reconnect. They don’t immediately jump into bed together. Delaney wants to make sure that he can’t hurt her again and Tyler wants to show that he has grown as an adult.  Of course, when they do make love it is hot, hot, hot!

Rating:

I give this book a 4/5

To find the book:

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Review: Going Nowhere Fast by Kati Wilde

About the book:

One promise.
Two hearts.
Three rules.
Four weeks to break them all.
 
When Aspen Phillips’ best friend invites her on a month-long road trip, she has serious mixed feelings. Sharing their tight quarters will be Bramwell Gage, overprotective brother and all-around jerk. Bram may be ridiculously sexy, but he’s made no effort to hide how he feels about Aspen—that she’s trash who’s no good for his sister. But Aspen is determined to get along with the uptight millionaire—and to keep her promise, concealing a secret about his sister that Bram can never know.

But after a scorching kiss reveals that Bram’s feelings toward her run much hotter than she believed, Aspen’s emotions swerve into a complete 180. Suddenly the girl who has nothing has everything—but only as long as the truth about his sister remains hidden. Because when all the secrets and promises unravel, she risks losing it all…

My thoughts:

I’m a little torn about this book. I loved the end of the book, but the journey there was up and down.

I liked Aspen – most of the time. She is a tough character and has a very big chip on her shoulder. She doesn’t seem like the type of girl who falls as fast as she does in the book. I know that her tough exterior was supposed to be just a facade, but I couldn’t see how in two weeks Aspen and Bram go from hate to love.  Bram is an ass. Most of the time he doesn’t treat Aspen very well. It was hard to like the character, even though it’s obvious the reason he “hates” her is because he really finds her attractive. Again, I just don’t see this kind of character falling head over heels in love in such a short amount of time.

I did love the intensity of their physical relationship. There was a bit of madness to it that was very well written. I definitely felt that although these characters didn’t like each other very much that they were very attracted to each other.

The subplot with Bram’s sister felt lacking. The sister is used as a plot device several times, but didn’t seem like a fully realized character.

Rating:

I give Going Nowhere Fast a 3/5

To find the book:

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Review: The House Mate by Kendall Ryan

About the book:

What’s sexier than a bad boy? A bad ass man who’s got his shit together.

Max Alexander is nearing thirty-five. He’s built a successful company, and he’s conquered the professional world, but he’s never been lucky in love. Focusing so much time on his business and raising his daughter, adulting has come at the expense of his personal life.

His social skills are shit, his patience is shot, and at times, his temper runs hot.

The last thing he has time for is the recently single, too gorgeous for her own good young woman he hires to take care of his little girl. She’s a distraction he doesn’t need, and besides, there’s no way she’d be interested. But you know what they say about assumptions?

This is book 3 in the Roommates series, but each book can be read as a complete standalone as they all feature new couples to fall in love with.

What I thought:

When you start a Kendall Ryan book, you know that you are in for a sexy, scorching romance. The House Mate is just that. There is instant chemistry between Max and Addison.

Max has just had his life turned upside down. After living a carefree bachelor life and planning on continuing everything changes with one word – baby. I love how Max doesn’t act like Dylan couldn’t be his daughter. He doesn’t question his ex-girlfriend about what happened for the last year plus. (Although I feel at some point he should have asked Jen about the important stuff.) Max instantly connects to the baby and sets out to protect her and provide for her.

Then comes Addison. Addison is looking for a change after her world blew up. She answers the ad for a nanny, but she isn’t prepared for how hot the baby’s father is. Addison is the perfect nanny. She falls in love with Dylan instantly and puts her first. When Max tries to make a move, Addison knows that it could ruin their relationship and the relationship that she has with Dylan.

I loved that in this romance, Addison is the more level-headed of the two. Max wants to jump in with both feet and jump her. Addison is scared that her life could be thrown into chaos again and wants to make sure the decisions she makes are the right ones.

My only quibble with the book is Max’s attitude toward marriage and love change almost overnight. There is almost no way a man who has lived his entire existence making sure his relationships are only contemporary and superficial would suddenly want to be a married family man. The story would have rung more true if there was at least a little resistance to his life changing so much.

Rating:

I give this book a 3.5/5

To find the book:

Amazon

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iBooks

 

Review: The Negotiator by Avery Flynn

About the book:

Wanted: Personal Buffer
Often snarly, workaholic executive seeks “buffer” from annoying outside distractions AKA people. Free spirits with personal boundary issues, excessive quirks, or general squeamishness need not apply. Salary negotiable. Confidentiality required.

Workaholic billionaire Sawyer Carlyle may have joked he needed a buffer from their marriage-obsessed mom, but he didn’t need a waiting room filled with candidates to further distract him. (Thanks, bro.) But when a sexy job applicant shooes his mom and the socialite in tow out of his office, Sawyer sees the genius of the plan. And the woman. In fact, Miss Clover Lee might just get the fastest promotion in history, from buffer to fake fiancé…

This free-spirit might look like hot sunshine and lickable rainbows, but she negotiates like a pitbull. Before Sawyer knows what hit him, he’s agreed to give up Friday nights for reality tv, his Saturdays for flea markets (why buy junk still baffles him), his Tuesdays and Thursdays for date nights (aka panty-losing opportunities if he plays his cards right). And now she wants lavender bath salts and tulips delivered every Monday?

Yup, she’s just screwing with him. Good thing she’s got this non-negotiatable six-weeks-and-she’s-gone rule or Sawyer may have just met this match..

What I thought: 

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It is funny, sexy and romantic. Sawyer has a major stick-up-his-bum and Clover is just the girl to remove it. (Ugh! That doesn’t sound right, but you know what I mean.) These two are a classic case of opposites attract. Sawyer is a business man and Clover is an adventurer. They are sure that there is no way they will fall for each other.

Clover is a lively character. She seems to be a flighty, irresponsible, good time girl. However, beneath her flighty and flouncy exterior beats the heart of a serious negotiator. The way she is able to get her way with Sawyer before he even knows what hit him is hilarious. I also liked the scenes when she negotiated with Sawyer’s mother who had a less than favorable opinion of Clover.

Sawyer is stuffy and set in his ways before his time. He takes his position as the CEO of his family’s company very seriously and doesn’t want anything – or anyone – to get in the way of his plans. His brother, Hudson, places the ad for a “personal buffer” and although Sawyer thinks the idea is ridiculous, he changes his mind as soon as Clover stands up to the one person he can’t – his mother.

Clover and Sawyer have instant chemistry. The sexy-times in the book are off the chart! The development of their relationship is sexy and sweet. I loved the way they each change for the other and realize that what they thought they wanted out of life isn’t necessarily all they want.

Rating:

I loved this book and give it a 5/5!

To Find the Book (release date 4/24):

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Review: The Attraction of Adeline by Lisa Wells

About the book: 

Adeline Rigby will live with Accountant Jack Foster and pretend to be his fake fiancée for one month in order for him to seal a promotion to partner. In return, Accountant Jack Foster will intimately tutor Adeline Rigby in French before she leaves for Paris where she will fulfill her dream of attending Le Cordon Bleu.

The Terms:

1. Maintain distance. Three get-to-know-you dates before announcing their engagement will be tempting enough.

2. No kissing. Okay, fine. Three kisses. Maybe four. And neck kisses don’t count.

3. No touchy feely stuff. Or at least not too many public displays of touchy-feely stuff.

4. No sex.

5. All right, all right. One night of sex in order to be a believable engaged couple.

6. Two nights of mind-blowing sex to make sure first night wasn’t a fluke.

7. Absolutely, positively, no falling in love.

What I thought:

THE ATTRACTION OF ADELINE is a funny, sweet romance. I really loved the relationship that develops between Adeline and Jack. There is a lot of chemistry between them from their first meeting and it grows as they get to know one another.

At first, this story seemed like just a lighthearted read, but there was a lot more to the characters. Adeline is trying to fulfill promises made to a loved one and doesn’t believe that she has the time or the right to fall in love with Jack. Jack is trying to make a good impression at work and can’t see that his personal life is more important than his professional one. I enjoyed the character development that both Adeline and Jack go through to get their happily ever after.

I would recommend this book for anyone who wants just a little more depth within a really cute, contemporary romance.

Rating:

I give THE ATTRACTION OF ADELINE a 4/5

To fine the book:

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Review: Ripped by Sarah Morgan

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About the book:

“Wardrobe malfunction” doesn’t begin to cover it.

With a rip louder than the “I dos,” Hayley’s hideous bile-yellow bridesmaid dress explodes. She’s always had enviable curves, but nearly naked wasn’t quite the look she’d been going for at her ex’s wedding.

She’s rushed from the altar under the best man’s designer tux jacket. Hayley’s expecting a blast of icy disapproval from sexy, sophisticated Niccolò Rossi—his usual reaction to anything she does. What she gets is a kiss that nearly melts what’s left of her polyester nightmare gown.

It’s impossible on a million levels. Exuberant engineer Hayley and buttoned-up lawyer Nico have never seen eye to eye—but skin to skin? Oh, mio… So when Nico shows up at her flat on Christmas Day to give her a fabulous gift—himself—Hayley’s delighted to do the unwrapping. But it’s just a holiday fling. By New Year’s Day, she’ll come back to her senses…unless Nico’s sensual skills tear away all her resolve.

Normally I’m not a fan of books written in first person, but after hearing lots of good buzz about RIPPED online I decided to give it a shot. I’m so glad that I did. RIPPED is a sexy, romantic, wonderful story. Haley had me laughing and cheering her on at the wedding from Hell and hoping that her sexy Christmas present, Nico, would be so much more than she thought. I did wish to know what was going on in Nico’s head, but his actions broadcast loud and clear what he wanted from Haley. If you are looking for a short, sexy Christmas read, RIPPED is the novella to pick up.

the book girl gives RIPPED a 5/5

to find the book:

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Review: A Christmas for Carrie by Alison Packard

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About the book:

The very thought of Christmas is enough to darken Carrie Jones’s day. “Jingle Bells” and eggnog? Not for this girl; not anymore. But running into a handsome old crush might make this year different…

Home to celebrate with his parents, Nick Johnson loves the holidays and all that comes with them, from trips to the tree lot to the very last strand of tinsel. Stunned to bump into Carrie while on a coffee run, he realizes that his former study buddy has grown into a drop-dead-gorgeous woman. One with whom he’d like to share all the joys—and hidden pleasures—of the season.

Spending time with Nick and his warm, close-knit family, Carrie can’t help but feel the very beginnings of that elusive Christmas spirit. She’s falling in love with all of them…until an unexpected visitor arrives. It will take putting her trust in Nick—and all her new found happiness—to overcome the ghosts of Christmases past.

First, I will say that I hardly ever read books where the heroine and I share a name. It tends to throw me out of the story and I find it weird. It’s a quirk of mine. BUT, I love Alison Packard’s writing and really wanted to read this book, so I decided to try to read it even with the name thing and just hope that it wouldn’t bother me too much. I really loved this story. Nick and Carrie’s romance is sweet, sexy, and highly emotional. Carrie hates Christmas and for a very good reason. She wants nothing to do with it, but one sexy blast from her past has her thinking that maybe a few little Christmas touches wouldn’t hurt too bad. Nick is drawn to Carrie when he sees her and hates that he didn’t see how gorgeous she was in high school. I love how they reconnect and the attraction between them builds. Nick is able to make Carrie see how the life she has been living isn’t the life she is meant to live and that Christmas isn’t the terrible season she’s been letting it be. A CHRISTMAS FOR CARRIE is a perfect holiday novella and one that will be added to my annual reread list (even with a heroine named Carrie)!

the book girl gives A CHRISTMAS FOR CARRIE a 5/5

to find the book:

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Review: Love a Little Sideways by Shannon Stacey

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About the book:

Liz Kowalski  is heading home to Whitford, Maine—this time for good. Eager for her family, a fresh start and some fun, she doesn’t count on being rescued by the chief of police her very first night back in town. Drew is everything she’s not looking for…so why is she still so attracted to him?

After a brief, forbidden rendezvous at her brother’s wedding, Drew Miller expects Liz to return to New Mexico and stay there. He’s searching for someone to settle down with, not a casual fling with his best friend’s sister. But when they’re stuck together on the annual Kowalski camping trip, things start going a little sideways. Keeping their hands off each other proves just as impossible as keeping their secret from becoming public knowledge.

Amid family, mud and melted marshmallow, Liz and Drew try to fight what’s growing between them. But a little time alone, a lot of chemistry and too many opinions might be just what it takes to bring together two people so determined not to fall in love.

I’ve loved all of the previous Kowalski books and really looked forward to Liz and Drew’s book. I’m not sure what it was, but I couldn’t feel the same connection. The fact that Drew and Liz fight their attraction to each other for more than three-quarters of the book and we only get to see them as a couple for a very small part didn’t help me see them as a forever couple. I loved seeing all of the couples from the previous couples and the interactions between the siblings and cousins. Those interactions made the book work for me even though the romance was lacking. The writing is excellent as always. There is enough humor, sexual tension, and family games of doom to keep the reader turning the page and wanting more. I’m more than a little sad that Liz is the last of the Kowalskis, but I’m hoping that this isn’t the last that we will see of them.

the book girl gives LOVE A LITTLE SIDEWAYS a 3/5

to find the book

Amazon

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Review: The Cowboy’s Christmas Baby by Carolyn Brown

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About the book:

‘Tis the season for…

A pistol-totin’ woman who’s no angel
A tough rancher who doesn’t believe in miracles
Love that warms the coldest nights

After a year in Kuwait, Lucas Allen can’t wait to get back to his ranch for Christmas and meet his gorgeous Internet pal in person.

When he pulls in, there’s Natalie Clark right in his front yard with a pink pistol in her hand and a dead coyote at her feet.

Lucas is unfazed. But wait…is that a BABY in her arms?

I really enjoyed this story. It took a little while for me to like the characters – I think because it took a little while for them to warm up to each other – but once I did I couldn’t wait to see how the romance would play out. Natalie doesn’t take anything from anybody. When Lucas returns and is shocked to find Joshua in her arms, she basically tells him to accept the baby or watch her backside as she walks away. Lucas was looking forward to moving his internet relationship with Natalie forward when he came home from Kuwait, but her having Joshua changed his plans in a big way. Lucas doesn’t want for things to be any way but how he pictures them, but as he gets to know the real Natalie and baby Joshua he realizes that he wants both of them to be part of his life forever. I loved Natalie and Lucas both. They are both such strong-willed characters that don’t put up with any nonsense. However, I think that my favorite part of THE COWBOY’S CHRISTMAS BABY are the secondary characters – especially Lucas’s grandpa, father, and surrogate uncle. These men add so much to the story and help move the romance along with the matchmaking efforts. This story is a sweet and sexy holiday read.

the book girl gives THE COWBOY’S CHRISTMAS BABY a 4/5

to find the book:

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Blog Tour Review and Giveaway – Unstoppable by Shannon Richard

UNSTOPPABLE blog tour graphic

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About the book:

Some things you don’t dare let go . . .

Melanie O’Bryan knows life is too short to be afraid of taking chances. And former Air Force sergeant Bennett Hart is certainly worth taking a chance on. He’s agreed to help her students with a school project, but she’s hoping the handsome handyman will offer her a whole lot more. Yet despite his heated glances and teasing touches, Mel senses there’s something holding him back . . .

Bennett Hart is grateful to be alive and back home in Mirabelle, Florida. Peaceful and uncomplicated-that’s all he’s looking for. Until a spunky, sexy-as-hell teacher turns his life upside down. After one smoldering kiss, Bennett feels like he’s falling without a parachute. But with memories of his past threatening to resurface, he’ll have to decide whether to keep playing it safe, or take the biggest risk of all.

I loved the romance between Mel and Bennett. It was obvious at the end of Grace and Jax’s book that something was brewing between these two and I was so excited to finally read their story. Mel is a very happy character and has a very positive outlook on life. She has great friends, a good relationship with her family, a wonderful job, but she is missing one thing – The perfect man. Bennett Hart isn’t as happy and settled as Mel, but he is still a fantastic character. After surviving a helicopter accident in the Middle East he returned to Mirabelle to be near his family and to start work building custom furniture by hand. He isn’t looking for a relationship and the thought of being in anything serious sends him running. Bennett grows and learns what he really wants for life throughout his relationship with Mel. I absolutely adored these two together.Their relationship isn’t a walk in the park they have a few bumps (some small and one big one) along the way, but they are most definitely meant to be together. This is the third book in the series, but can be read as a stand alone. (Although you should read them all because they are fantastic!)

the book girl gives UNSTOPPABLE a 5/5

to find the book:

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Contest:

Because I love this series so much (and because it’s almost Christmas), I’m going to give away the whole series (in digital format). One lucky person will get all three books in the Country Roads series – UNDONEUNDENIABLE, and UNSTOPPABLE.

TO ENTER:

Leave a comment on this post answering this question: Unstoppable is set in the small town of Mirabelle. Are you a fan of small town romances?

US addresses only, please. Make sure to check to see if your name is chosen.

Contest runs through 12/8/13 at 5pm cst. Winners have 7 days to claim prize and you must check back to see if you are a winner :)