Book Review: Second Chance Cowboy by Joanne Rock

RATING: 4 out of 5 Stars

SECOND CHANCE COWBOY (Road to Romance Book, #2) by Joanne Rock is a second chance contemporary romance that demonstrates this author’s seamless ability to immediately allow you to become emotionally invested in her characters and immerse you in the beauty and uniqueness of her settings. Even though this is the second book in this series, it is easily read as a standalone.

Larissa Martine left Cheyenne, Wyoming eight years ago for the bright lights of Broadway and a career in dance. It was a promise she made to her dying mother. But as she leaves, she also devastates the boy she loves in a text message.

After a possible career ending injury and on her way to an audition in Los Vegas, Larissa is detouring to her hometown to honor a pact between girlfriends, to make peace with past wrongs and hopefully clear the future to turn bad luck to good.

Matt Briggs thought he had it all. He purchased Split Fork Ranch next to his family spread and was ready to move ahead with the girl he loved. That was not how it worked out. Now Larissa is back and he does not want to hear about her regrets, but he does want her stay for his sister’s wedding next week. The intense attraction is still there and maybe if they have one more night together it will give them both the peace with the past they seek, or they could repeat past mistakes all over again.

Larissa and Matt are both trying to live up to what they perceive that others wanted for them. The love and attraction has always been an easy part of their relationship, but the emotional communication between the two is difficult and lacking. Even though eight years has passed, they almost repeat their past and the author leads them towards their HEA is a realistic and believable way. The sex scenes are steamy and also emotional. The secondary characters where as well fleshed out and entertaining as the H/h. This is a quick read packed with emotion and what I expect when I read a book by this author.

Written for and posted first on The Romance Reviews.com.

Book Review: Married In Montana by Jane Porter

RATING: 5 out of 5 Stars

MARRIED IN MONTANA (Paradise Valley Ranch Book 2) by Jane Porter is a wonderful historical romance that takes you back to 1890 Marietta, Montana. This book has a marriage of convenience storyline that focuses almost completely on the emotional growth of the hero and heroine without any trope scenes of external jeopardy or harm to force a sudden declaration of love. This story has a few references to Book 1 in the series, but can easily be read as a standalone.

Ellie Burnett is the pampered and spirited child of Archibald Burnett who is dying. To protect their large ranch and her father’s legacy, Ellie must marry and quickly. Though she can ride, shoot and run the ranch, her father wants her settled with an honorable man. What Ellie wants is to still be in control even after she marries.

Thomas Sheenan has come from Ireland to work hard and be his own man. The last thing he wants is a wife. He had to care for and bury his family in Ireland and he believes he is emotionally dead inside. When Ellie comes to him and proposes, he cannot turn her or the opportunity down, but he tells her he will never love her.

These two strong, independent and stubborn characters are then taken on an emotional journey by this author. Ellie starts out not knowing why anyone would not want the ranch and money that comes with her and an immature view of marriage. Thomas starts the marriage by taking complete control to gain the respect of the ranch hands and keep Ellie at a distance. The death of Ellie’s father devastates her and after months of depression, we begin to see small steps forward in understanding as Thomas forces her back into day to day living.

Ellie and Thomas are portrayed with strong emotions that continue to change and grow as the two become a couple. The sex scenes are well written and add to the growth of intimacy between Ellie and Thomas. These two start from very different places in life and yet deserve to find their HEA together.

Written for and posted first on The Romance Reviews.com.

Book Review: When Darkness Whispers by Lisa Carlisle

RATING: 5 out of 5 Stars

WHEN DARKNESS WHISPERS by Lisa Carlisle is a mix of military romantic suspense, paranormal/urban fantasy and serial killer thriller all woven together to make an AMAZING book!

Eva Montreaux is a biologically enhanced Marine. She leads the NEO (Night Eagle Operations) team 17 sent to Okinawa to investigate who or what is brutally murdering American servicemen. With the increased tensions between the American military and the Japanese it is essential to solve and stop these killings as soon as possible. As she works with her special team, she runs into military colleagues from her time in Afghanistan, but her enhancements have made that portion of her memory incomplete until she sees Gunny Delacruz.

Gunnery Sergeant Marcos Delacruz has had three years since Eva left Afghanistan to come to terms with promises not kept. When he runs into Eva on Okinawa, he cannot believe she shows no emotion at seeing him again. The past will have to be dealt with, but right now he is on a mission. With his special ability to communicate with spirits, his superiors hope he can solve the serial murders. What he does not expect is to continually cross paths with Eva during the investigation.

Eva and Marcos both have secrets that cannot be revealed to others in regards to their missions. They also have misunderstandings that are tied to their pasts in Afghanistan. As Eva struggles to remember Marcos and their shared past, they both have to find a serial killer that does not appear to be human.

I loved this whole book. Eva and Marcos are great main characters that are fully fleshed with flashbacks that in no way confuse or interfere with the main plot. Trust is a huge issue for them in the past and present that has to be resolved for them to work together. Their romance is written past and present and grows throughout the story. There is great sexual tension as well as tender yet hot sex scenes.  I also really enjoyed the last chapter of this book which is unique.

Ms. Carlisle has delivered a well written military romantic suspense with paranormal characters. She has then intertwined the whole story with Japanese folk lore that adds to the uniqueness of the story. This is a book that I highly recommend!

Written for and posted first on The Romance Reviews.com.

Book Review: Clone Me a Lover by Rosalie Redd

RATING: 4 out of 5 Stars

CLONE ME A LOVER (An Interstellar Lovers Novella) by Rosalie Redd is an enjoyable and quick sci-fi romance novella and a possible start to a new series.

Angelo Thirteen is a human clone from future Earth who desires to fall in love. All emotions have been banned on Earth, but Angelo Thirteen is good at hiding his so he will not be sent for reprogramming. When the spaceship he is piloting is hit by space junk, the pods disengage and his pod is sent tumbling into deep space. Before he passes out, all he regrets is that his chance to escape Earth and live a free life with emotions is over.

Elle is an Altonian spaceship captain on a mission. She must sell her payload to get the money to free her brother from a future in her home world’s prison mines and pay off her beloved ship. When she rescued the pod from space, she was not expecting to find a sexy life form on board. She has to keep to her goal, but this human clone keeps surprising her with his gentleness and kindness which is breaking down the hardened wall around her heart.

For the short length and the introduction of new world-building, this is a well written sci-fi romance. The sex scene was hot and sexy and well placed in the story. Both Angelo and Elle are well portrayed and realistically change and grow together in this short romance plot. My only problem with this story was the harsh transition between Chapters 2 and 3. It pulled me out of the story and had me checking back if I missed something.

Other than that one point in the story, it flows very well and had me anxiously waiting for how this author would give me my HEA. I was not disappointed and will be looking for more books in this series in the future.

Written for and posted first on The Romance Reviews.com.

Book Review: Some Kind of Hero by Suzanne Brockmann

RATING: 5 out of 5 Stars

There are a large number of great authors and out of that group everyone has their favorites that just always deliver for them. You disappear into their fictional worlds with no difficulty and love all the characters no matter how long you have been away and it always feels like you just visited yesterday.

One of my favorites is Suzanne Brockmann and her latest romantic suspense SOME KIND OF HERO (Troubleshooters, #17) delivered. Once again she gave me a noble and hunky Navy SEAL to fall in love with right along with a unique heroine and a fast paced suspense plot. Even though this is the 17th Troubleshooter book, it can easily be read as a standalone, but I don’t know why you would not want to meet all the other great characters in this series.

Lieutenant Pete Greene “Grunge” whips BUDs into SEALs that are ready for anything. What he is not ready for is the sudden guardianship of his sullen 15 year old daughter, Maddie after the death of her mother. They are strangers that are having serious difficulties relating to each other. Before Pete can connect, Maddie gets into serious trouble with a girl she thought was her friend and disappears. Pete knows she is in trouble, but does not know how much and is desperate to find and help her.

Shayla Whitman is a romantic suspense author and Pete’s neighbor. She has seen him around with his daughter, but has always been too intimidated by his hero worthy looks to introduce herself until she finds out Maddie is missing. Being a divorced mother of two boys, she knows the terror of having a child missing and at risk and wants to help in any way she can. As Shayla and Pete work to find Maddie and figure out who she is running from and why, Shayla can’t believe she is actually living a real life romantic suspense story.

These two are just perfect together. They both have been hurt in love before and need to learn to trust and open up again. Maddie and her buddy, Dingo make great secondary characters. I really loved when Shayla kept sending Maddie text stories of her mom and Pete’s relationship to make her understand that Maddie and her dad did have common ground; they both loved her mother.

Once again, a great addition to the Troubleshooter series! Strong, fully developed characters introduced in this book and a few friends from previous books. A suspense plot that keeps the tension high and the pages turning. A must read series for me!

 

Book Review: Prossers Bay Boxed Set (Books 1-4) by Cheryl Phipps

RATING: 4 out of 5 Stars

I really enjoy getting to know characters and towns over a book series.  PROSSERS BAY BOXED SET (Books 1-4) by Cheryl Phipps consists of one short story and three contemporary romances set in the small town of Prossers Bay, New Zealand. The romances revolve around a group of three girlfriends with the short story being an introduction to the series’ main characters. These romances are all entertaining in their own right and are fast and easy reads.

Book 1 is the short story ‘Doc’s Town’ and is an introduction to Doc Morris, the town doctor. All the characters watch out for Doc now that he is a widower and his only son is away working on his own career. The main female characters of the three romances in books 2-4 are introduced as well as someone who wants more than friendship with Doc and that is basically all this short story involves.

Book 2 ‘Finding Liam’ is Abby and Max’s story. Abby owns her own cleaning service. Megan and Stephanie work for her and are also her best friends who have helped her through her several miscarriages and depression. As Abby and Max try to find their way back to a physical and loving relationship that has dissolved during Abby’s depression, Abby finds a child left alone in one of the beach homes she is cleaning. Liam’s story will break your heart and have you reading until the end to make sure this little boy finds his happily ever after as well as Abby and Max. (I have to say this was my favorite of the three full length romances.)

Book 3 ‘Seducing Megan’ takes us into struggling, single mom, Megan’s life with twin girls, Mia and Cody. John Lambert owns and runs the upscale resort just outside of town and he wants Megan to work for him. He makes Megan an offer that she just cannot refuse monetarily, but what he does not know is that Megan has been burned before by a rich man and no matter how attracted she may be to John, she refuses to make the same mistake again. Megan is sassy and talented, but John knows she is a mom first and he has never considered being a dad.

Book 4 ‘Saving Stephanie’ has Doc’s son, Jamie, and Stephanie’s old boyfriend returning to Prossers Bay to care for his dad after a minor heart attack. The flame is still there, but so are the problems that separated them. Both have dreams they want to fulfill and unless a compromise can be found they will both be going their separate ways once again.

The three contemporary romances are all entertaining and all are different types of stories that are not repetitive. They can easily be read as standalone books, but when read in order or in this box set, they build on each other and make you feel as if you are a part of the Prossers Bay community. This is a good box set for an enjoyable and easy summer read.

Written for and posted first on The Romance Reviews.com.