Sunday, October 31, 2010

In My Mailbox: Volume 1 Issue 26

In My Mailbox (IMM) is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren. Every week I'll post what books I've received either by mailbox/library/store.

I'll try to post an entry of IMM every Sunday that I receive books by mail of that week.

Listed below are the books I received this week.

Books via Public Library

Maybe This Time by Jennifer Crusie
The 9th Judgment by James Patterson

Saturday, October 30, 2010

A Bit of Me(Me): Like Taking Candy From a Baby

We all leave our “footprint” on the world, in one way or another. We each, individually, do something or are someone that makes the world a little better just by being here.

This is a weekly meme to get to know the blogging community a bit better. To know what makes them tick, outside of books, that is. This meme is hosted by the1stdaugter @ There's a Book each Saturday.

This Week's Question:
What is your favorite candy bar?

If you had me this a couple a months ago, hands down, my answer would be a Butterfinger!!

But lately I have been unfaithful to my beloved Butterfinger. Yes, I have been seeing another on the side and I have to admit, I am totally surprised by it myself. I say I'm surprised by this because I don't usually like nuts in my chocolate. I prefer to keep the two separate.

But indeed, I have fallen in love with Snickers!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Review: Hell, Yeah by Carolyn Brown

Hell, Yeah
Carolyn Brown
Series: Honky Tonk, #2
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Published: August 3, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback {351 pages}
Source: Public Library
Genre: Contemporary
Characters: Cathy O'Dell, Travis Henry
My Rating:
Heat Level: 1/5
She's finally found a place that feels like home...

When Cathy O'Dell buys the Honky Tonk, the nights of cowboys and country tunes come together to create the home she's always wanted. Then in walks a ruggedly handsome oil man who tempts her to trade in the happiness she's found at the Honky Tonk for a life on the road with him...

He lives the good life...

Gorgeous and rich, Travis Henry travels the country unearthing oil wells and then moving on. Then the beautiful blue-eyed new owner of the Honky Tonk beer joint becomes his best friend and so much more. When his job is done in Texas, how is he ever going to hit the road without her?

"Ten, hell yeah!"

Cathy has taken over the Honky Tonk from her cousin Daisy and is enjoying being a new bar owner. In walks Travis one New Year's Eve, who knocks her socks off with a kiss at the stroke of midnight.
Both were deeply affected by the kiss, but Cathy tended to fight it more than Travis. She tended to be more rude and harsh toward Travis as a way to fight her growing feelings for him. Hell, Yeah felt like a re-hash of I Love This Bar. It was pretty much the same premise with just a changing of the character names.

Just like in the previous book in this series, I Love This Bar, Hell, Yeah is overrun with references to every country song imaginable. I don't feel like there was a whole lot of anything going on between Cathy and Travis. In the end, I ended up skimming most of it.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Review: Laid Bare by Lauren Dane

Laid Bare
Lauren Dane
Series: Brown Siblings, #1
Publisher: Berkley Heat
Published: June 30, 2009
Format: Trade Paperback {322 pages}
Source: Public Library
Genre: BDSM, Erotica, Menage
Characters: Erin Brown, Todd Keenan, Ben Copeland
My Rating:

Heat Level: 5/5
It's been ten years since clean-cut, sexy-as-hell police officer Todd Keenan had a white-hot fling with Erin Brown, the provocative, wild rocker chick next door. Their power exchange in the bedroom got under his skin. But love wasn't in the cards just yet...

Now, life has thrown the pair back together. But picking up where they left off is tough, in light of a painful event from Erin's past. As Todd struggles to earn her trust, their relationship takes an unexpected and exciting turn when Todd's best friend, Ben, ends up in their bed--and all three are quite satisfied in this relationship without a name. As the passion they share transforms Erin, will it be enough to help her face the evil she thought she had left behind?

Music, raw and hard like sex, pulsed through the speaker stack, caught the people in front of the stage, as much as it had her, in its grip.

Erin and Todd had a pretty intense short-lived relationship that scared Todd because it was a BDSM relationship. He thought it to be unnatural and ungentlemanly to want to dominate a woman. He felt like he was some kind of deviant. So Todd breaks it off with Erin so he could persue a "normal" relationship with a more wholesome female.

Ten years later he's back and wants to start things up again with Erin like they'd never been apart. They fall in love with each other all over again. It was great watching these two grow closer and become more comfortable with the D/s lifestyle. It was like they finally achieved what their relationship could have been ten years ago if Ben had not run from it.

Then they introduced Ben into the relationship. I was a bit apprehensive about this because Erin and Todd's relationship was already great without that added aspect. My fear was that it would detract from Todd and Erin overall relationship. That it would be something extra thrown in for sex purposes and not add to Todd and Erin. But it didn't.

Lauren handled adding a third very well. Ben in fact added a whole new dynamic to their relationship. I guess what really made it work for me was the that they all loved each other. Not just two men in love with the same woman, but the men loving each other as well.

It's a great start to this series and I look forward to visiting them in the other books of the series. If the other books in this series are as hot as Laid Bare, they will not disappoint.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Review: Open Season by Linda Howard

Open Season
Linda Howard
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Published: May 21, 2002
Format: Audio Book
Source: Public Library
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Characters: Daisy Minor, Jack Russo
My Rating:

Heat Level: 4/5
She's hunting for a mate...

and there's no more playing it safe.

Daisy Minor is bored. Worse than that, she's boring. A plain, small-town librarian, she's got a wardrobe as sexy as a dictionary and hasn't been on a date in years. She's never even had a lukewarm love affair, let alone a hot one. So when she wakes up on her thirty-fourth birthday and wonders how it is that she still lives with her widowed mom and spinster aunt while her friends have all gotten married and started families, she decides it's time to get a life and a sex life. And as far as she can tell, good girls don't attract nearly as many men as bad ones.

Can a lifelong good girl turn bad? No, not exactly.

But they can pretend, right?

One makeover later, Daisy has transformed herself into a party girl extraordinaire. She's letting her hair down, dancing the night away at clubs, and laughing and flirting with men for the first time in, well, forever. With a new lease on her own place, she's found a new lease on life and it's open season for man hunting.

But on her way home late one night, Daisy sees something she's not supposed to see. Suddenly the target of a killer, she's forced to put her manhunt on hold. But the very moment she stops looking might be the moment she finds what she's wanted all along. Trouble is, before he can share her life, he might just have to save it.

Open Season is a re-read for me. I loved it so much the first time, and it's been a while since the last time I read it (June 2008), so I thought I'd read it again.

Daisy has just turned 34 years old and still lives at home with her mom. And she's the local librarian to boot. She has no life, but she has set out to change all that.

Jack is the new police chief in town who enjoys spending time with Daisy. More to the point, he enjoys getting her all worked up about something. She seems to have taken an instant dislike to him and he loves to just egg her on. Daisy is a very likable and relatable heroine who could be every girl's best friend. Jack too is well executed; he could be your best friend and the love of your life all rolled into one. Prime example the scene with Daisy outside the local pharmacy. (One of my favorite scenes of this book.)

Just like the first time I read it, I was laughing out loud at their interplay. But this time I was at home laughing out loud as opposed to last time I read it on an airplane to NYC. This read is highly entertaining and the suspense is right on par. It's not often that I find a story that offers romance, suspense, and humor. Linda Howard nails all three.

It's no wonder why Open Season has earned a permanent spot on my favorites list.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Review: Hidden Hands by Shayla Kersten

Hidden Hands
Shayla Kersten
Series: Hands, #3
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
Published: April 16, 2009
Format: Kindle
Source: Personal Library
Genre: LGBT
Characters: David March, Jeremy Lawson
My Rating:

Heat Level: 2/5
Detective Jeremy Lawson doesn't expect anything from his one-night stand except sex. What he gets is a shooting, a mystery, plus some of the best sex he's had in a long time. Somewhere along the way, he also finds some tenderness for a lost soul in need of rescuing.

David March has let his troubled past blind him to any kind of happy future. But when a one-night stand turns out to be a cop in shining armor, David begins to think differently about his life. As in, he wants one. But to have one, he has to stay alive.

Jeremy Lawson glanced around the packed club.

David and Jeremy meet out at a bar one night when they are both feeling pretty lonely. After spending an enjoyable one night together, they are thrown back together when Jeremy witnesses someone trying to kill David.

Within the first chapter, Jeremy and David meet and go home together. Neither one of them can be with the men they truly want to be with, so they take solace in each other.

David has been through some emotional trauma and views himself as unworthy of pleasure or love. Jeremy tries to prove to him that he is worthy of both. While Jeremy is protecting David from whoever wants him dead, he falls in love with David.

Overall the story was just okay for me. I didn't feel like David and Jeremy knew each other well enough to be in love. The relationship between the two men seemed rather forced, with no true connection or chemistry. I however did enjoy seeing appearances of the characters from the previous book, Hidden Forces.


Friday, October 22, 2010

Review: I Love This Bar by Carolyn Brown

I Love This Bar
Carolyn Brown
Series: Honky Tonk, #1
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Published: June 1, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback {366 pages}
Source: Personal Library
Genre: Contemporary
Characters: Daisy O'Dell, Jarod McElroy
My Rating:

Heat Level: 2/5
Funny, sexy, and sure to appeal to the huge audience of country music fans, this new trilogy features the Honky Tonk beer joint and its succession of lovelorn owners. Serving two counties, one wet and one dry, the Honky Tonk is the gathering place for every hothead, thirsty rancher, and lusty lady looking for a good time. Owner Daisy O'Dell vows she'll run the place until they drag her cold dead body through the swinging doors. That is, until the day Jarod McElroy walks in, looking for a cold drink and a moment's peace from his ornery Uncle Emmitt. The minute Jarod sees Daisy, with her hot looks and smart mouth; he knows he's met not only his own match, but Uncle Emmitt's as well. Now, if only he can convince her to come out from behind that bar and come on home with him…

All the air escaped Daisy's lungs in a whoosh when the cowboy collapsed on top of her body.

Daisy has been content running her bar, the Honky Tonk, until she literally collides into Jarod McElroy. From that point on neither one can stop thinking about the other.

Jarod's attraction to Daisy is immediate but once he realized she is a barmaid, he refuses to get involved. Daisy has trust issues due to a previous abusive relationship, and tends to keep men at arms length. The fact Jarod is only in town temporarily to care for his ailing uncle Emmett doesn't help matters.

Uncle Emmett has Alzheimer's and believes Jarod and Daisy to be married. Or does he? Daisy has her suspensions that it's all a hoax but can't prove it. So for Uncle Emmett's sake, they pretend to indeed be married.

I enjoyed the story at the beginning, but then about halfway through it started to fizzle out a bit for me. There didn't seem to be any kind of deep connection between Jarod and Daisy. Yes there was sexual tension but that's about it.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Review: A Delicious Taboo Plus Two by Jennifer Cole

A Delicious Taboo Plus Two
Jennifer Cole
Publisher: Loose ID, LLC
Published: July 8, 2008
Format: Kindle
Source: Personal Library
Genre: Erotica, LGBT, Polyamory
Characters: Melanie Drake, Van Dansk, Calen Maxwell, Phillip Weston, Jake Welland
My Rating:

Heat Level: 4/5
For two years following that first explosive weekend of carnal awakening, Melanie and her four gay lovers have settled into a comfortable life as a family. And as far as any the five lovers are concerned, life just doesn't get any better!

As they approach their second anniversary, Melanie, Calen, Van, Jake and Philip are about to have their world turned upside down. Will the introduction of two more be a catalyst that blows this family's perfect world apart?

Rays of early dawn seeped through the wide slats of wooden blinds, spattering soft light within the darkened room.

This one picks up some years later after A Delicious Taboo, with all five lovers now living together. Melanie and her four lovers are all happy and content, but Melanie hasn't been feeling well. Each of her lovers have all noticed her bouts with illness but she assures them all is well.

In this follow-up, you get a little more of the characters and their personalities than you got in the first. A Delicious Taboo Plus Two contained all the hot sex as the previous book, but more in the way of one-on-one instead of the group setting.

You witness the love they feel for each other on an individual basis. Plus there is also some appearances from the guy's families as well. It's interesting to see how their parents and siblings react to their unorthodox relationship. And there also is an introduction of some friends of theirs who share their same lifestyle. It wraps up the loose ends where A Delicious Taboo left off. A nice, neat conclusion to their love story.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday: Volume 1 Issue 23

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine. It is showcases upcoming releases of books that I'm looking forward to. It is somewhat similar to one of my previous posts, Anxiously Awaiting.

Promise Canyon
Robyn Carr
December 28, 2010

After years spent on ranches around Los Angeles, Clay Tahoma is delighted to be Virgin River’s new veterinary assistant. The secluded community’s wild beauty tugs at his Navajo roots, and he’s been welcomed with open arms by everyone in town—everyone excerpt Lilly Yazhi.

Lilly has encountered her share of strong, silent, traditional men within her own aboriginal community, and she’s not interested in coming back for more. In her eyes, Clay’s earthy, sexy appeal is just an act used to charm wealthy women like his ex-wife. She can’t deny his gift for gentling horses, but she’s not about to let him control her. There’s just one small problem—she can’t control her attraction to Clay.

But in Virgin River, faith in new beginnings and the power of love has doors opening everywhere...

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Teaser Tuesday: Four Play by Maya Banks & Shayla Black

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by MizB @ Should Be Reading. To participate, all you have to do is the following:

  • Grab your current/upcoming read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share 2-3 "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
  • Be careful not to include spoilers! (You do not want to ruin the book for others.)
  • Share the title & author so that others who enjoy your "teaser" may add the book to their TBL pile.
"Tate, I'm fine. Let's go. I look like I've gone three rounds and lost." Then she looked down at her tank top that was most definitely not covering everything it should. "Shit. Did I flash everyone?"

"Huh? Sorry, baby. I wasn't looking at your tits. I was too worried about other parts of your body."

"I'm strangely insulted by that."

He laughed and smacked her ass. "Come on. Let's go."

page 20; Four Play by Maya Banks & Shayla Black
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