Friday, June 28, 2013

Requested Review: Diane Escalera -The Right Temptation

"Can a childhood crush mature into the real thing? Kayla Martinez has recently landed an RN position at a prestigious hospital in her hometown. The new job is everything she's hoped for, especially when one hot specimen shows up in the ER. She hasn't seen her childhood crush in years, and considering how much hotter he's gotten over time, she almost ends up needing resuscitation. The last thing Nico LaCosta needs is a broken arm.

Now his pal's kid sister wants to soothe his pain, but he'd rather keep his distance so her big brother doesn't break his other arm. Kayla's no child anymore, though. She's one hot-blooded woman, determined to remind him of a mind-blowing kiss back when they were teenagers. Leave it to Kayla to drop by his house unannounced and play Nurse Seductive. A guy has to follow the buddy code, or face the consequences. Still, sometimes giving in to temptation is worth it... "
Ebook: 90 pages
Latin Heat Trilogy - part 2
Contemporary Romance
ISBN: 1616504757
ISBN13: 9781616504755
Publisher: Lyrical Press, Inc
Release date: June 2013 

Main characters: Nico La Costa & Kayla Martinez

My review:
First lines of the story:  “She felt like such a stalker. Miracle no one had called the cops to report that some random chick kept doing drive-bys in their peaceful neighborhood. Then again, maybe no one had noticed. Kayla Martinez hoped for the latter. Casing Nico La Costa’s house like a crack addict in need of a quick fix  topped her list of most embarrassing moments. Getting arrested for said behavior would definitely screw up her plans.”

Wow! What can I say… Diane Escalera has done it again with the second part in her Latin Heat trilogy. She pulls you in right from the start with her hawt and captivating characters, once you start to read you can’t stop. I loved the first part in this trilogy about three cousins, we already met Dylan and Shay in Still Hot For You and now we meet Nico and Kayla. Like Still Hot For You this story focuses on one event, one weekend that changes the lives of Nico and Kayla forever.  Although this story is only 90 pages long, Diane Escalera managed to create a believable story with depth and character development, the attraction between Nico and Kayla vibrates from the pages, making this story one hawt, fast read.  

Kayla never forgot the one kiss she shared with Nico all those years ago. He ruined her for other men, but Nico has a rule: he stays away from his friends younger sisters. Kayla has worked hard to get her RN position at the hospital, all work and no play. She is confident, feisty and determined; she has achieved all her goals but one, Nico. When he shows up in her ER with a broken arm she decides it is now or never and plans a wicked seduction to win his heart.

Nico La Costa knows what he wants. He works hard to achieve his career goals, he takes good care of himself, he values his family and friends and he likes to have a good time with a hot babe every now and then, but he is not looking for something serious right now. I felt a bit sorry for Nico, here is this hot looking, confident guy who doesn’t stand a chance from the moment feisty Kayla passes his threshold to seduce him, gone is his perfect, organized life and his confidence.
Like I said before this is a short story, I usually don’t like short stories because they often don’t work for me, but Diane Escalera knows how to balance her stories perfectly. She provides you with the right amount of background information and combines this with strong, likeable characters and the right dose of sexual tension. It is fast-paced but never felt rushed, Nico and Kayla’s characters are well-layered, especially Nico’s.

The Right Temptation is about two people falling in love, two people who are meant to be together. The way Diane Escalera describes Nico makes you want to jump his bones, so hawt…. He is also the one put through the emotional wringer, Kayla scares him with her intentions and he needs time to get used to all the new emotions Kayla stirs up. I love Kayla’s strength and confidence; she does not hesitate to pursue her dreams.
Once again Diane Escalera delivers a heartwarming and sexy read, The Right Temptation is an abundance of smoldering romance, chemistry and one serious hawt hero! Keep your fan nearby!

4 stars

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Cover Reveal: Until Fountain Bridge - Samantha Young

Here some thoughts about a series I started and heart....

Wow! I loved Samantha Young's On Dublin Street and I hear from friends that Down London Road is even better, oooo is that even possible?? For me On Dublin Street was a perfect read and I have trouble putting my thoughts on paper about that one, because it was such an emotional journey and for the length of the story I actually moved to Dublin Street and lived there, feeling every emotion Joss and Braden shared with us. I love to feel such an emotional connection with the characters of a story.

So... Until Fountain Bridge (an On Dublin Street novella) follows the romance between Ellie Carmichael and Adam Sutherland, who we met in On Dublin Street, it is to be released by NAL in ebook in the US June 18th! Yay!! Here's the cover and blurb...              

Ellie has been in love with Adam Sutherland for as long as she can remember. What started as a childhood crush on her protective older brother Braden,best friend soon bloomed into full-blown infatuation . Unfortunately, it also meant full-blown heartache, as Adam refused to fall for his mate’s little sister.

But it takes a crisis to make Adam realize he’s wasted too much time denying his feelings for her. Unwilling to waste a second more, he decided to make Ellie his, no matter the consequences. Now happily settled with the woman he’s pined after for years, he’s about to find out what their ten year courtship was like for her, through the journals she kept during their ups and many downs. And though Adam may have Ellie now, he has no idea how close he came to losing her.

But first up is Down London Road, release date May 7th!


It has always been up to Johanna to care for her family, particularly her younger brother, Cole. With an absent father and a useless mother, she’s been making decisions based on what’s best for Cole for as long as she can remember. She even determines what men to date by how much they can provide for her brother and her, not on whatever sparks may—or may not—fly.

But with Cameron MacCabe, the attraction is undeniable. The sexy new bartender at work gives her butterflies every time she looks at him. And for once, Jo is tempted to put her needs first. Cam is just as obsessed with getting to know Jo, but her walls are too solid to let him get close enough to even try.

Then Cam moves into the flat below Jo’s, and their blistering connection becomes impossible to ignore. Especially since Cam is determined to uncover all of Jo’s secrets…even if it means taking apart her defenses piece by piece.

Woohoo, I love to discover a new series that grabs me by throat, has me emotionally invested and makes me forget the whole world around me! Don't you?

Monday, April 15, 2013

Review Lover At Last - J.R. Ward

Hardcover: 608 pages
Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy
ISBN-10: 0451239350
ISBN-13: 978-0451239358
Publisher: NAL Hardcover; 1 edition (March 26, 2013)

Main Characters: Qhuinn & Blay

“Qhuinn, son of no one, is used to being on his own. Disavowed from his bloodline, shunned by the aristocracy, he has finally found an identity as one of the most brutal fighters in the war against the Lessening Society. But his life is not complete. Even as the prospect of having a family of his own seems to be within reach, he is empty on the inside, his heart given to another....

Blay, after years of unrequited love, has moved on from his feelings for Qhuinn. And it’s about time: it seems Qhuinn has found his perfect match in a Chosen female, and they are going to have a young. It’s hard for Blay to see the new couple together, but building your life around a pipe dream is just a heartbreak waiting to happen. And Qhuinn needs to come to terms with some dark things before he can move forward…

Fate seems to have taken these vampire soldiers in different directions... but as the battle over the race’s throne intensifies, and new players on the scene in Caldwell create mortal danger for the Brotherhood, Qhuinn finally learns the true definition of courage, and two hearts who are meant to be together... finally become one.”

First line of story:
“Qhuinn, son of Lohstrong, entered his family’s home through its grand front door.”

My thoughts:
I fell in love with John, Blay and Qhuinn the moment they entered the Black Dagger Brotherhood world, but I was never really into the Team Qhuay hype. So I had no sky-high expectations for their story, the last three BDB books I liked but I wasn’t really emotionally invested in them like with the first three books in the series. I did not like the way V’s story ended and the low point of the series for me was Phury’s story. So why keep on reading this series? Because I am a sucker for all those domestic BDB mansion scenes and I love to catch a glimpse of the other brothers and their shellans/mates.

The problem I have with Ward’s stories is the constant switching between plotlines, and yes it annoyed me as well with Lover At Last. I really wanted to lose myself in Blay and Qhuinn’s romance, but every time their romance made any progress Ward switched to a secondary plotline or Qhuinn and Blay started to bicker again over things like a bunch of girls and I grew tired of the miscommunication between them. I also did not like the way Blay lied about his break-up with Saxton to Qhuinn.

“”I’m not with anybody,” Qhuinn said.

Blay laughed again with an edge. “As in a relationship? Of course not. But do not expect me to believe that you’re spending your off time crocheting doilies and alphabetizing a spice rack with that female.”

“I haven’t had sex in almost a year.””

There were a few heartbreaking moments in their romance that grabbed me by the throat, but they were few and far between. Basically I felt that the romance was snowed under by all the other characters and plotlines, their romance and HEA was on hold till the last chapters in the book, only then it gained momentum. It wasn’t until then that Qhuinn and Blay finally connected on a deeper, emotional level, this did not make their romance very believable for me.

I loved the erotic scenes between Blay and Qhuinn but they were just that, they were all about releasing the sexual tension between them instead of establishing a deep, emotional connection. I understand that Qhuinn had a lot of stuff to work through before he finally figures out whom he is and what he wants but the romance felt rushed to me. As a romance reader I felt a bit robbed, 608 pages and less than 30% was about their romance.

I really liked Layla in Lover At Last; she really is a strong character. But I did not care much for the way Ward handled Layla’s miscarriage and the miraculous healing by Payne; I fail to see the necessity of this plotline to the story. Layla has a strong connection to Xcor and I love to see where Ward is going with that one. Assail and Sola are interesting characters, they have a strong chemistry going on, but for me their plotline stole Qhuinn and Blay’s limelight.

Another plotline that demands more and more attention is the one with iAm and Trez; it looks like Ward is slowly introducing us to yet another world/species within the BDB world. I have no clue what Ward has up her sleeve with these guys and I honestly don’t know if I like these characters, but I do understand why Ward has moved them into the Brotherhood mansion. With all the brothers mated, this will give Ward a reason to continue to visit the mansion in the future and we all love those visits to the BDB mansion.

And then there is the power struggle for the throne, Wrath is becoming a king more and more and I love his interactions with his brothers and his shellan Beth, Qhuinn’s induction into the Brotherhood was heart-warming, I was fanning myself… Those scenes are why I still want to read this series, why I still dive into a new BDB release the moment it hit the shelves.

As for Lover At Last, there were things I liked and things that did not work for me, it certainly did not knock my socks off in the romance department. There were just too many other plotlines occupying the pages instead of Qhuinn and Blay’s romance, therefore I was not emotionally invested in this story.

The next chapter in the BDB series (spring 2014) will probably be titled The King and it will be about Wrath and Beth, I can’t wait to revisit them and see how the story develops further, hopefully their story will grab me by the throat and demand my full attention again. Wrath won’t have it any other way… I hope.

3 stars