Genre: Contemporary

AN HEIRESS FOR HIS EMPIRE by Lucy Monroe

AN HEIRESS FOR HIS EMPIRE by Lucy Monroe

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
AN HEIRESS FOR HIS EMPIRE by Lucy MonroeAn Heiress for His Empire by Lucy Monroe
Series: Ruthless Russians
Published by Harlequin on 2014-10-01
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 192
Reviewed by Melissa

The story: Innocent debutante Madison Archer has hit the headlines for a scandal not of her making. Now, marriage to the unscrupulous Viktor Beck is the only way to save what's left of her reputation! The contract: Maddie has always featured in Viktor's plans to take over her father's company and expand his empire. The intense attraction between them only sweetens the deal he's offered…. The secret: Though love doesn't beat in Viktor's heart, he'll show Maddie just how hot their chemistry can be. But even this corporate shark is in for a shock—his wild socialite is still a virgin!

Madison Archer has loved Viktor Beck for years. She tried long ago to make him see her as a desirable woman but he rebuffed her. Now Maddie is faced with a terrible scandal in the tabloids because of a so called friend who spread lies about her for money. Her father is infuriated and insists that Maggie chose between several men he has selected to lead his company, among them is Viktor. She must marry the man she chooses immediately to counter the scandal. It’s always been Viktor for Maddie so she allows him to convince her to go along with her father’s plan and choose him. Viktor has always wanted Maddie but was sure she was too young before, now her father has played right into his plans. He desires Maddie not only as a woman but also for business reasons. Can Maddie turn desire into love? Or is she destined to love a man who will never love her?

 

 

Can I just say this maybe my favorite Lucy Monroe book in years?! I always love to read her books but with An Heiress for His Empire she has hooked me again. Maddie and Viktor are both blinded to how the other really feels. Add to that the devious friend and Maddie’s less than functional relationship with her father and you have a book that keeps you turning the pages. Joyfully Recommended for all readers who are looking for an addictive read!!!

IN YOUR DREAMS by Kristan Higgins

IN YOUR DREAMS by Kristan Higgins

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
IN YOUR DREAMS by Kristan HigginsIn Your Dreams by Kristan Higgins
Series: Blue Heron #4
Published by Harlequin on 2014-10-01
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 384
Reviewed by Vanessa

Everyone loves Jack Holland, but Emmaline Neal needs him. Her ex-fiancé is getting married in Malibu and, obviously, she can't go to the wedding alone. In Manningsport, New York, tall, blond and gorgeous Jack Holland is practically a cottage industry when it comes to rescuing desperate women. He knows the drill, Em figures, so he won't get the wrong idea. What Jack needs is an excuse to leave town. Ever since rescuing four teenagers from a car wreck, he's been hailed as a hero and the attention is making him itchy, especially since his too-pretty ex-wife is back, angling for a reunion. He's always liked Emmaline. She needs a weekend date? No problem. So when they wind up in bed together, Em chalks it up to red wine and chocolate cake, just one impulsive night not to be repeated. But Jack's pushing for more, and if she lets down her guard, either she'll get her heart crushed again, or discover that Jack's worth more than just dreaming about.

JoyfullyRecommended

White knight, Jack Holland, loves to help.  No matter what the need, he is there to assist.  Jack had dreamed of being a hero, and he was there on just such an occasion, but Jack never weighed the cost of aiding those in need until that one night.  Still carrying around the ache and disappointment of feeling like a failure, Jack is called upon again to be there for someone in need.  Giving that this is ingrained in his character, he just can’t say no.  So, Jack agrees to escort Emmaline Neal to her

ex-fiancé’s wedding so that Emmaline can save face.  However, Jack never banked on the ramifications that one weekend will play on his heart.

 

Emmaline Neal is a strong woman who has found her calling as a police officer for the small town she was transplanted to when she just couldn’t deal with the bullying anymore.  Emmaline has always found it within herself to rise above her shortcomings However, her ex was a steadfast fixture in those valleys of her life, holding her up and helping her to feel like she was more.  His leaving her high and dry had an impact on her life, and she desperately wanted others to believe that she has moved past his betrayal of her several years previously.  If Jack was willing to aid in her pseudo-relationship, who was she to say no?  Besides, he was just the eye candy she needed to distract her from so much more.  Yet, Emmaline never banked on that one life changing night, and she tries to chalk it up to “what happened in Malibu stays in Malibu”, but Jack is pushing for more, and she just doesn’t know if she’s up for another opening of herself in this lifetime.

 

In Your Dreams WAS all that and a bag of chips with a heaping slice of decadent chocolate cake on the side!!  Oh, I could NOT get enough of this newest offering from Kristan Higgins.  From the opening page to the wrap up, In Your Dreams pulled you in as though you were listening to a tale from your BFF.  I cannot believe that Kristan Higgins does not enjoy writing.  It pours through In Your Dreams as though she were sitting right there distracting you from the worries of your life with her humor and delightful characters whose exploits literally have you laughing out loud.

 

Even though on the surface, In Your Dreams seemed like a happy go lucky romance, I found there was deeper meaning beyond the surface.  Both Jack and Emmaline were guilty of seeing what they wanted to see and looking at things with a myopic view at points, but they grew and saw beyond In Your Dreams.

 

I felt that In Your Dreams was about people revealing their true selves, while others had to let go of what they believed those people were for the longest time.  They learned to accept the past and that they wouldn’t change it for the world because it made them who they are today, without those hardships they might never achieve their full potential In Your DreamsIn Your Dreams also explored the view that the characters had on themselves and what they believed to be their failings, yet others didn’t see it that way.

 

I found In Your Dreams far exceeded my expectations of a romance as it entertained and enlightened me, igniting thoughts and views that were always there, but just needed another voice to solidify them and remind me that in some areas others see the same way.  Because In Your Dreams was ssssooo much more than I expected, and actually put me in a good mood (I suspect that Kristan Higgins was in that mood when she penned this novel) I must Joyfully Recommend this tale.  Sure, there were some hard, tear jerking moments between the covers of this story, but I felt that she softened those blows by giving the reader so many feel good moments and reminding them to look beyond the surface.

BACKWOODS by Jill Sorenson

BACKWOODS by Jill Sorenson

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
BACKWOODS by Jill SorensonBackwoods by Jill Sorenson
Series: Aftershock #4
Published by Harlequin on 2014-06-01
Genres: Contemporary, Suspense
Pages: 384
Reviewed by Vanessa

The more you trust, the more you risk… When plans for a wilderness retreat with her teenage daughter Brooke go awry, Abby Hammond reluctantly pairs up with Brooke's stepbrother and his dad, Nathan Strom, for the weeklong trek. The only thing Abby has in common with the bad-boy former pro athlete is that their exes cheated with each other. That…and a visceral attraction that's growing more complicated with every step through the picturesque woods. Nathan's wild-card reputation lost him his career and his family. After years of regret, he's ready to fight for what truly matters—and that includes Abby's hard-won trust. When Brooke goes missing, Nathan knows he's her best and only hope of rescue. But the deeper into the rugged mountains they go, the more dangerous the territory will prove—for their safety and for their hearts.

JoyfullyRecommended`

Abby Hammond is always picking up the pieces from her negligent ex, and now she finds herself on a camping trip with her teenage daughter, Brooke.  Abby doesn’t do roughing it, but she will do whatever possible to make her daughter happy.  Soon, Nathan Strom shows up with his son, Brooke’s stepbrother, and the fireworks begin to ignite.

 

Nathan Strom is trying to right the many wrongs of his life.  The main one on his radar is growing closer to his hard-headed teenage son, Leo.  He joins the camping expedition to begin the process, but soon finds that his growing attraction to the woman, whose ex cheated with his then wife, may just be the cherry on top of his new start on correcting his mistakes of the past.  As the four embark on a trek through the wilderness, learning about life and letting go of some pain, Brooke is taken, and Nathan must step up to be the hero.

 

Backwoods was a thrilling endeavor that showed some complexities of the characters as they made realizations about one another and learned to look past mistakes from their past.  I was rooting for Nathan from the beginning, because he was a man who set aside that all-important pride to get back what was so much more important in life in Backwoods.  I also enjoyed the fact that Jill Sorenson didn’t attempt to ram a cheater down the readers’ throats as someone that changed their spots because, in the end, that character stayed true to their selfish selves in Backwoods.

 

The chemistry between Nathan and Abby was combustible, and I completely agreed with Brooke in what they should do.  However, I’m glad that they weren’t looking to make it all about someone else, but reacted more to what was best for themselves in their situation in Backwoods.

 

Abby showed that she was the complete package parent in Backwoods, willing to do whatever she could to see a positive outcome.  However, she did have me teetering on the edge of my seat when she started to go the route of “child first” before endeavoring on seeking her own happiness in Backwoods.

 

Backwoods showed the flaws in the main characters as the author delved into their personas, making them more identifiable to the readers.  Nathan and Abby weren’t larger-than-life characters, but every day run-of-the-mill people who made mistakes and were looking to right the wrongs of their pasts as they set aside their pride and selfish desires by placing others before them in Backwoods.  I Joyfully Recommend Backwoods because a second chance at happiness was found amongst the rubble of destroyed relationships brought about by other forces, and I just completely loved Nathan Strom!

 

PICKS & PUCKS by Teegan Loy

PICKS & PUCKS by Teegan Loy

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
PICKS & PUCKS by Teegan LoyPicks & Pucks by Teegan Loy
Published by Dreamspinner Press Genres: Contemporary, MM
Reviewed by Lisa

No one would disagree that Justin Corrin has a gift with a hockey puck.  Justin also has incredible talent with a figure skating pick. His life should have been a dream.  Far from it.  His older hockey player brother is jealous and his father, a college hockey coach, has a fit when he learns that Justin is taking figure skating classes.  Adding to that his hockey player boyfriend insists on staying firmly in the closet.  His mother’s death in a car accident is the final blow in destroying Justin’s home life.  She was the glue that kept them together.  After the funeral he left his fractured family for training in California.

 

Just missing the podium at Nationals Justin agrees to come home with his demons to face the mess he left behind.  Confronting family members it seems that they are trying to make amends while Justin is the one who won’t let the past go.

 

New skating programs, developing family relations, and a new hockey boyfriend who’s not in the closet.  Justin is learning that he makes his own drama and his own demons.  It’s up to him to make a life worth cherishing.

 

Such sorrow and angst in the beginning.  The evolution of the main character’s growth in Picks and Pucks is gritty, realistic, and heartwarming.  Accepting Justin’s invisible demons may take a moment of adjustment, but they have a place in the skater’s maturity so bear with them.  The secondary characters are just as real and intrinsic to the plotline.  Picks and Pucks is the story of a family that’s unraveled by anger and death, however time and love is knitting them back together.   Cheer them on.  I Joyfully recommend Picks and Pucks. Tissue optional.

FOREPLAY by Sophie Jordan

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
FOREPLAY by Sophie JordanForeplay by Sophie Jordan
Series: Ivy Chronicles #1
Published by Harper Collins on 2013-11-05
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult
Pages: 304
Reviewed by Miranda

Pepper has been hopelessly in love with her best friend's brother, Hunter, for, like, ever. He's the key to everything she's always craved: security, stability, family. But she needs Hunter to notice her as more than just a friend. Even though she's kissed exactly one guy, she has the perfect plan to go from novice to rock star in the bedroom: take a few pointers from someone who knows what he's doing.Her college roommates have the perfect teacher in mind. But bartender Reece is nothing like the player Pepper expects. Yes, he's beyond gorgeous, but he's also dangerous and deep—with a troubled past. Soon what started as a lesson in attraction is turning both their worlds upside down, and showing them just what can happen when you go past foreplay and get to what's real. . . .

Pepper has always been in love with her best friend’s older brother, Hunter.  She has watched from behind the scenes as Hunter dated other people but now he’s single and it is the perfect time for Pepper to make her move. But there is one thing Pepper believes she needs before making her move on Hunter. She needs some skills in the bedroom and her friends have picked out the perfect guy for her to get some private lessons with.  The hottie bartender at their favorite college drinking hole.

 

Pepper is expecting an easy encounter with the bartender so she is caught off guard when she meets Reece.  Pepper can spot a troubled soul easy because she sees one when she looks in the mirror.  Reece is sexy and smooth but he might be dangerous to Pepper’s heart.  Will Reece teach Pepper the ins and outs of foreplay? Will Pepper find the family she has always wanted or true love?

 

Sophie Jordan weaves a magical spell with Pepper and Reece in Foreplay.  Their first meeting is kismet and things only get better from there.  My favorite thing about Ms. Jordan’s writing is how perfect she gets the turbulent emotions of people of her characters age.  Things are so messy when you are in the throes of first love, especially when you are carrying the baggage that Pepper and Reece are carrying around.

 

Pepper and Reece are downright steamy! Their emotions and chemistry simply drip from the pages of Foreplay!  If Pepper and Reece are the kind of couple that comes of out The Ivy Chronicles series then I am ready for book two!

MIRACLE ROAD by Emily March

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AGAINST THE ROPES by Sarah Castille

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COLD WAR by Kiera Andrews

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HELL FOR LEATHER by Julie Ann Walker

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BORN WILD by Julie Ann Walker

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