Golden Man by Ann Major

Misconceptions and unspoken feelings are at the center of what has kept a relationship between two people from ever growing into something much more. Blade Taylor and Jenny Zachery genuinely liked each other when younger, but neither would act upon how they felt except for the single time when they just could not hold back their passion. Now they are older yet not much wiser when it comes to expressing their attraction for each other, and this story tells of the roller coaster journey traveled when they meet once again. I so wanted these two to finally have the happiness that they have long desired, but nothing comes easy for them. Ann Major fills her Men of the West story with a wide range of emotions and stirring developments, making GOLDEN MAN constantly poignant.

Since Jenny Zachery was the daughter of local preacher living in Zachery Falls, Texas, she had to carefully watch her conduct and make certain to follow every rule as stipulated while growing up. Later she married a man who was respected in the town, and even after his death, she felt compelled to keep behaving appropriately. But lately, Jenny has thought something is missing in her life, as she is always working to keep the ranch and resort that she oversees profitable.

The one time when Jenny gave in to her passionate nature, Blade Taylor had been the man with whom she let her inner feelings show. But he had left town, and she married his brother. When Blade returns after being away for years, he has come back for a specific purpose. Because his reason involves Jenny and the ranch, he wonders what type of reaction he will receive from her.

Both Jenny and Blade secretly wished to live a much different life than the one that they actually did while growing up. She knew going against the way in which she was strictly raised would cause problems, but she would have liked to not always have been the “good” girl, especially when it involved Blade. Her feelings for him left her confused as a teenager, and she is even more bewildered when he returns years later. He had a terrible childhood, and the judgmental residents of their small Texas town never let him forget how he grew up. I certainly hope I never blame someone for something they have no control over, as I saw how much it disturbed Blade as a child and adult. I ached right along with him when he tried to make it seem as though he was not affected by gossip, but truly did feel hurt. I never knew how Jenny and Blade would respond to what was happening in the story, and sometimes they reacted in a surprising manner. GOLDEN MAN is often heartbreakingly emotional. Ann Major makes her characters the kind of individuals for whom you care, and I really wanted this couple to be contented when the book ended.

I voluntarily reviewed the book from the author, and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Men of the West – Book 4

Publisher:  Major Press LLC

Releases:  February 19, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/hfsuaor

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://www.annmajor.com/

Rating:  4 Stars

Crazy for You by J.H. Croix

Each book in the Last Frontier Lodge series tells of a couple who must overcome numerous obstacles before they can be in a lasting relationship. In the eighth book, the emotional pull practically overwhelms Sawyer Hamilton and Violet Carter from their first meeting, yet deep-rooted doubts keep anything permanent from forming. As their touching journey changes with each passing day, I became completely engrossed in how this couple would react to each set of circumstances that arose. CRAZY FOR YOU is a heartfelt romance with genuine emotions and delightfully appealing characters. J.H. Croix drew me into every compelling moment.

Being a very capable Navy SEAL has kept Sawyer Hamilton alive while carrying out his many secret assignments, but one mission did leave him injured and additional surgery will hopefully result in less pain. Since some assistance might be needed afterward, he has come back home to Diamond Creek, Alaska because several family members live in the area. While doing some preliminary tests at the local hospital, he meets Violet Carter, a lively woman who works in a lab. There is an instantaneous connection between Sawyer and Violet, and they share a kiss that is hard to forget before he leaves the hospital.

After saying goodbye to New York City and coming to work in Alaska, Violet now feels as though she actually belongs somewhere. When she meets Sawyer again by chance, she is surprised when the charming man says he would like to go on a date with her. Although she certainly cannot deny there is a strong attraction, she does not plan on ever letting things get serious with a man again after what happened in her past. But desire runs high and being together is oh so tempting.

The way in which J.H. Croix makes each of her books in the Last Frontier Lodge series a standalone is simply amazing. Regardless of the book being read, plenty of background information lets me know something about the featured characters and past plots in order to not feel lost. There are so many wonderful relatives plus their friends who live in Diamond Creek, and I always enjoy hearing about their current lives. Ms. Croix makes the scenic locale come alive with colorful details, while daily activities make the characters seem more convincing.

A book where two people are totally stunned by their responses to each other and then try to fight the fascination is a favorite, and J.H. Croix knows how to make this storyline absolutely riveting. Whether Sawyer and Violet are trying to make some tough decisions or giving in to the highly explosive desire they feel, each scene is entertaining with believability. I was so thrilled for this couple when they followed their hearts, and I also felt their misery when choices led to conflict and hurt. Sawyer was self-assured about his ability to be a soldier, but Violet confuses him and takes away his control. He is such a likable hero, and I really enjoyed watching him go through so many different emotions. Violet had thought being on her own would make her happy, and I fretted she might not be willing to give up her independence. CRAZY FOR YOU is about discovering what will bring lasting joy.

I voluntarily reviewed the book from the author, and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Last Frontier Lodge Novels – Book 8

Publisher:  Amazon Digital Services LLC

Releases:  February 28, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/jgevrqz

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://jhcroix.com/

Rating:  4.5 Stars

Rescued by the Wolf by Kristal Hollis

In the second Wahyas of Walker’s Run book, two people who have very little in common feel an intense attraction despite their differences. From personalities to hopes to even species, this couple is not at all alike, yet neither can resist the overpowering lusty magnetism between them. While emotional issues might perhaps tear them apart, their connection cannot be so easily broken. I truly became caught up in every compelling situation because of numerous surprising developments and likable characters.  RESCUED BY THE WOLF is an extremely creative shapeshifter story, and Kristal Hollis brings one imaginative scene after another to life.

Though Rafe Wyatt had once thought having his own family was finally within reach, his hopes were shattered when his pregnant mate died because someone wanted her pelt. Now the wolfan male watches over Walker’s Run where his pack lives in the Appalachian Mountains, as he wants to make certain no more lives are destroyed by a poacher. One night while out covertly patrolling, an accident has Rafe coming in contact with Grace Olsen, a human whose presence affects him way more than he wants. While she would like for them to be pleasant with one another because of mutual friends, he always seems grouchy around her.

Grace was supposed to be staying in the area for only a short time, yet folks in the community have her feeling very welcome and encourage her remain longer, with the exception of Rafe. But after the accident, he will at least talk to her. When they begin to spend lots of time thinking about each other plus actually looking forward to being together, growing desire has them taking their relationship to a more intimate level. Yet several individuals who know Rafe and Grace pose a threat to their possible future happiness.

The Wahyas are wolf shapeshifters unlike any that I have ever read. Kristal Hollis gives her wolfan species their own unique capabilities, and I enjoyed learning more about these fascinating beings as the series continues. Hiding their existence from humans is imperative to staying alive and unharmed, but Rafe secretly wants Grace to know about all his abilities and still accept him. As these two navigate through the many challenges they must face, they discover much about themselves plus each other. Both have lived through emotionally painful incidents, so getting into a new relationship is not on their minds. But when desire is as powerful as what is between Rafe and Grace, it just cannot be ignored. Their sexual encounters definitely made me feel the scorching heat that they generated.

RESCUED BY THE WOLF is often emotional yet also contains a wide variety of sentiments. There are some lighthearted moments all during the story, especially those instances where private thoughts are humorous or clever comebacks are delivered. Grace can talk to anyone, and I enjoyed seeing her charm those around her. Rafe is very protective of those for whom he cares, and his alpha side certainly came out if needed. When some frightening episodes take place, the suspense builds and caused my heart to pound with trepidation. The world created by Ms. Hollis for her Wahyas is original and entertaining, and I hope there are many more stories to come. Also, I really love the cover.

I voluntarily reviewed the book from the author, and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Wahyas of Walker’s Run

Publisher:  Harlequin Nocturne

Releases:  March 1, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/zrdggr2

Genre:  Paranormal

Author website:  http://kristalhollis.com/

Rating:  5 Stars

A Lady’s Code of Misconduct by Meredith Duran

The Rules for the Reckless series has contained books that always have inventive storylines, and A LADY’S CODE OF MISCONDUCT is definitely a shining example of originality. A very imaginative first chapter left me almost breathless because of how much I felt pulled into the life of a particular character. Meredith Duran managed to also grab my attention during every following scene by creating a totally intriguing premise. From political concerns affecting English citizens in the 1860’s to problems two individuals must face on their own, there is never a moment when I was not eagerly reading to see what could possibly happen next. Ms. Duran has amazed me in the past with her unique plots, and I must say that her latest Rules for the Reckless story is truly remarkable.

Even though an aunt and uncle took in Jane Mason after her parents died, these relatives were actually only interested in her large inheritance. While living in their home brings her no pleasure, news of a forced wedding is more than she can tolerate. Getting away from the estate has Jane devising a plan which will help gain control of her life. But problems cause the plot to fail, and the only person around to offer assistance is Crispin Burke. He is a political ally of her uncle, and Jane does not trust him at all.

When Crispin comes up with a way to aid Jane while also getting something for himself in return, she comprehends this is her only choice and agrees to his terms. His main reason for assisting the downtrodden woman is to further advance his own political career, but admiration for her spunk is a little extra motivation. Just when Jane is about to lose all hope of her wishes being granted, an incident involving Crispin gives her an opportunity to follow an unexpected path. Then the two are thrust into a world full of secrets and treachery.

If a relationship is based on lies, often it cannot last because guilt will tear away the foundation. With so many truths left unsaid between Jane and Crispin, either because of unintentional deceit or buried memories, I felt it would take a miracle for them to ever form a lasting bond. New facts become known to them from time to time, and I nervously waited to see how the couple would react when the information was learned. Before Crispin lives through a tragic event, his choices were all about helping himself. But afterward, his altered behavior makes him a changed man. While I did not completely despise him at the start of the story, I cannot say that I really liked him either. Jane had a rough life after the death of her parents, and her cunning strategies for making a better life caused much respect. My heart broke for this couple more than once, as Ms. Duran gave them realistic complications to overcome. A LADY’S CODE OF MISCONDUCT is overflowing with emotions that are heartfelt plus exceedingly profound.

There is much political unrest in the story, and the author let me get a sense of how people saw the same situation differently. Arguments are passionate, and responses are sincerely candid. I experienced the feelings, hopes, and dreams of numerous individuals, and I came to intimately know what stirred these people to action. Meredith Duran has written a spellbinding novel where mysteries, romance, and sharp wit are cleverly entwined.

I voluntarily reviewed the book from the publisher, and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Rules for the Reckless – Book 5

Publisher:  Pocket

Releases:  February 28, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/jf79lks

Genre:  Historical

Author website:  http://meredithduran.com/

Rating:  5 Stars

Baby Surprise for the Doctor Prince by Robin Gianna

A heartfelt romance is expertly interwoven with medical emergencies in the latest story from talented Robin Gianna, where emotions are frequently conflicted and lives are forever changed. Two people who enjoy helping others find themselves experiencing unanticipated desire for each other. One of them might be willing to see if they can actually be in a relationship, but the other is too fearful and will not take a chance. As this couple tries to keep anything from affecting their ability to work together, genuine feelings for each other continues to grow stronger. I never knew for certain how these main characters would react, but it was always with frank responses. BABY SURPRISE FOR THE DOCTOR PRINCE entertains with one engaging scene after another.

When Aubrey Henderson went to Venice, it was to offer any needed assistance to another nurse who had just married. During the two days spent in the city, she became intimate with Prince Enzo Affini who is the brother of the bridegroom. For the next two months, Aubrey was in Rome teaching required skills to new nurses. Now she is looking forward to being back in Venice for several months and working in a clinic before returning to the United States. However, Aubrey’s joy turns to shock when she realizes Enzo is the doctor with whom she must work. Though wary of their being able to behave professionally at all times, he lets her stay on after proving she is a very capable nurse. While the couple may get closer, Enzo feels there can never be anything permanent between them. But an unexpected disclosure may alter his thinking.

Although BABY SURPRISE FOR THE DOCTOR PRINCE is the second book in the Royal Spring Babies series, it does not have to be read first as plenty of facts are cleverly provided. Aubrey loves helping others and often puts their needs ahead of her own. But Enzo lets numerous suspicions affect his opinion of her in the beginning, as he has had many women pursue him. Yet his new nurse is certainly up-front in letting him know just how wrong he is about her, and I thoroughly enjoyed watching her get this point across. Aubrey and Enzo are very convincing characters, from their conduct with each other to how they perform medical procedures. Many of their conversations are filled with quick-wit, and I loved their intelligent comebacks. The author let this couple express their desire for each other with kisses and touches that are always sincerely conveyed.  BABY SURPRISE FOR THE DOCTOR PRINCE is passionate, amusing, and constantly packed with honesty.

Past events greatly influence how Aubrey and Enzo now act, and I anxiously waited to see how many of their scenes together would play out. Robin Gianna knows how to make every moment in her story seem candidly realistic, and I truly believed the trueness of every situation as presented. From working through personal troubles to trying to fix a medical problem, any incident was always conceivable. There are also lots of activities taking place that could only happen in Venice, and I got a sense of what it would be like to visit.

I voluntarily reviewed the book from the author, and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Royal Spring Babies

Publisher:  Harlequin Medical Romance

Releases:  February 21, 2017

Purchase:   http://tinyurl.com/hg7y3oj

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://www.robingianna.com/

Rating:  4.5 Stars

One Flight Stand by Kim Linwood

 

Honest emotions practically jump off the page from the very start of ONE FLIGHT STAND, and the intensity of any feelings only grows stronger with each new scene. Often a story with a Mafia theme will contain lots of violence, but Kim Linwood concentrates on the relationship of a couple who should never have connected yet did in a most personal way. What follows the first meeting between two individuals who are unaware of their backgrounds is situations filled with so much realism that I felt every character just had to actually exit. I could not read fast enough, yet truly did not want the entertaining ONE FLIGHT STAND to end.

A chance meeting at the airport in Chicago led to an amusing moment between Andrea DiFiero and Montana Caporossi. When they end up on the same flight to London, they share a sexual encounter which neither can completely forget. Life returns to normal for the pair until Andie is ordered by her Mafia father to wed a man who is part of a rival crime organization. When she realizes Montana is also involved with the same Mafia family plus is related to her future husband, her feelings are pulled in different directions. Then it is learned that their in-flight adventure had huge consequences when Andie discovers she is pregnant. Now she and Montana fear for all three of their lives, and a solution must be found to ensure their safety.

ONE FLIGHT STAND is the type of story that I immediately want to read again, because I just am not ready to let go of the very appealing main couple. The numerous compelling situations experienced by Andie and Montana are sometimes humorous but often more serious. But one thing I noticed about every single moment was the genuineness of each incident. Though these two frequently have to live by a code which ordinary people do not, they still secretly hope their dreams can one day come true.

There is plenty of hilarious dialogue in the story, and I was constantly laughing at what Andie and Montana said or was thinking. Their quick wit is spot-on at times and perfectly fit the circumstances. They also must live through an abundance of events which are demanding and could have dire costs if wrong choices are made. There is plenty of passion between these two, and many of their sexual exploits are boldly daring plus definitely steamy. I really liked many of the secondary characters, especially Evie, and hope to see more of them in an upcoming book. ONE FLIGHT STAND is emotionally rewarding and packed with the unexpected.

I voluntarily reviewed the book from the author,  and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  A Bad Boy’s Baby Romance

Publisher:   Amazon Digital Services LLC

Releases:  February 14, 2017

Purchase:   http://tinyurl.com/j8rll3k

Genre:   Contemporary

Author website:  http://kimlinwood.com/

Rating:  5 Stars

Tempted by Kimberly Van Meter

While many people going on a singles cruise only want to hook up with a stranger for the few days the ship is at sea, the two main characters in this story have other aims. Harper Riley has a private reason for wanting to be with a man who can provide what she needs, and Teagan Carmichael just wants to relax after a recent harrowing ordeal. But when their paths cross, they become sidetracked from their initial intentions as the sexual pull is so strong. Kimberly Van Meter lets the conflict between these two individuals continue to build along with a powerful yearning, which causes TEMPTED to be filled with emotional clashes.

When Harper Riley booked a cruise for singles, she was looking for something more permanent than only a brief affair. She even has a specific man already picked out, and she wants to grab his interest before another woman gets a chance. Harper knows the background of the widower, and the successful businessman is definitely rich enough to make her future work out as she desires. After personally learning emotional attachment can lead to heartbreak, she keeps any of her relationships from focusing on feelings.

Though Harper had her plan all mapped out on how to reach her goal, the brief contact she had with one man on the cruise made her momentarily think about pleasure and not her objective. Sadly, the bank account of Teagan Carmichael is rather small since the charter plane company that he and his brother own is just getting started. But she has obligations, so setting her sights on someone else is necessary. Yet Teagan also has formulated his own plan, one which has Harper starring as his willing sexual partner.

The first time I met Harper, I thought her ideas about being in a relationship with a man were not the best. But as the story unfolds, I came to realize that the way in which she was brought up distorted her future opinions about men, making it difficult to change her current views. There were a few times when I so wanted her to see situations differently, as Kimberly Van Meter repeatedly does not make things easy for Harper and Teagan. He is such a wonderful hero who was met in a previous book, but his own story is totally a standalone. Teagan is compassionate and respectful, yet he is also a red-hot lover in bed. Some of their encounters are very heated with almost uncontrollable lust.

Kimberly Van Meter puts this couple through the wringer more than once along the road to lasting happiness, and several events are very challenging. TEMPTED is a constant rollercoaster of emotional experiences. Discovering whether Teagan would give up on his quest to win over Harper kept me reading, as these two can be stubborn plus each believes their reasoning should be followed. I never knew how either would react, and this fact also kept my attention throughout the book.

I voluntarily reviewed the book and all comments are my honest opinion

Publisher:  Harlequin Blaze

Releases:  February 21, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/zssgw8l

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://kimberlyvanmeter.com/

Rating:  4 Stars

Seeking Mr. Wrong by Natalie Charles

Several years ago, I read three very intriguing suspense stories written by Natalie Charles. So when I saw this author had penned a new book, I was definitely thrilled. Though the story is contemporary, Ms. Charles still kept my interest with her many compelling characters and the clever plot. When circumstances force a kindergarten teacher to drastically change her writing style, the possibility is high of her plans not going as desired. Toss in a sexy man who causes plenty of fantasies, and things just might get better if she can get over her fear of perhaps being hurt. Natalie Charles takes her romantic couple on a journey of self-discovery, resulting in SEEKING MR. WRONG being funny and heartfelt.

There have not been any extraordinary highpoints in Lettie Osbourne’s life, but getting married soon would hopefully turn out to be fulfilling. But the event never happens as her intended broke their engagement right before their wedding day. So it seems her two careers will have to bring her happiness. Lettie does enjoy being a kindergarten teacher, while writing books for young children is also rewarding. As the new school year starts, she plans to put her energy into being a good educator and not think about her depressing private life.

Yet not all goes as Lettie wished, as the school has a new vice principal, Eric Clayman, a man whom she does not completely trust because of a prior incident. Then she discovers her just completed book is not wanted, but writing an erotic story could be profitable. Her need for money has Lettie agreeing to see if she can create a book full of sex scenes. With her personal experience not being that kinky, she will probably have to seek out some helpful information. At least her mind is already conjuring up a few inventive encounters starring her new co-worker, and these imaginings could conceivably be turned into a story.

The first thing I noticed about SEEKING MR. WRONG was how the characters seemed like ordinary folks living in a typical town. As the story progressed, I got to know some of the individuals and what made them unique. When any goals or dreams are revealed, I came to realize what motivated many of the people in the community. Though some are vocal about their objectives, others like Lettie typically keep their wishes to themselves. She is a rule follower and always hopes for the best, but often her loyalty does not bring joy. This frequently happens in real life, and Ms. Charles had me feeling her dejection time and again.

SEEKING MR. WRONG entertains with delightfully engaging situations. The relationship of Lettie and Eric has plenty of ups and downs because of misunderstandings plus challenging obstacles. I felt their sadness when longings were beyond reach, and I rejoiced with them if an event was to their liking. The author made me care about the couple, and her way of giving their perspectives let me know how both viewed a happening. To go from writing a story for young children to creating a story packed with lusty sex is a big step for Lettie, and there are numerous moments in the story where her thoughts are truly amusing. It would be nice to revisit the town and have additional personal stories told.

I voluntarily reviewed the book from the publisher, and these comments are my honest opinion

Publisher:  Pocket Star

Releases:  February 13, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/hsw8jmp

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://nataliecharlesromance.com/

Rating:  4 Stars