Sweeter Than Sin by Shiloh Walker – a Review

Sweeter Than Sin by  Shiloh Walker – a Review

 

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Description:
CAN’T FORGET THE PAIN

It took years for Adam to stop drowning his regrets in alcohol, and running the local bar doesn’t make it any easier—especially not when everyone he knows gathers there to discuss the shocking allegations that have shattered his hometown. When another murder rocks sleepy Madison to its core, it becomes chillingly clear that even more vicious wounds are waiting to be exposed.

WON’T RESIST THE PLEASURE

Nothing is sacred anymore, and no one is safe, least of all the mystery woman who shows up in town out of the blue, looking like every fantasy Adam’s ever had. She may have her own dangerous secrets, but she can’t ignore the urgent heat between them any more than he can. As a killer’s quest for vengeance explodes into violence, Adam is tempted to lose himself in the delicious promise of her body—until he realizes he’ll risk anything if she’ll give him her heart…in Sweeter than Sin by Shiloh Walker.

 

Review:

Sweeter than Sin by Shiloh Walker is the 2nd book in her Secrets and Shadows series. The main focus of this series was tragic events that took place 20 years ago, with many of the men involved in this small town, and a major scandal that is beginning to rip the town apart. The sins of the fathers come to play, as revelations are discovered about the Cronus Club, and the abuse of the young boys over the years.

Noah and Adam were two of our main characters, along with Trinity in the first book. This book is darker, as truths are discovered and vengeful deaths are still happening today. Adam is our hero in this book, and our heroine turns out to be the missing Lana, from 20 years before. When she learns that a body was discovered in the old house (this was part of the first book), Lana decides she must return to help end the horror and put things to right.

Adam has always loved Lana, though when she left, she was involved with Noah, who has now moved on with Trinity. It took Adam almost 15 years to overcome his drinking addiction, but he uses sex with any women to survive his loss of Lana. Lana herself overcame a drug addiction, as she ran away and hid from the truth.   When she arrives in town, it is Adam who will recognize her, and after recovering from the shock, he takes her to his home, as she has no money and he wants answers.

What follows is a mystery that has so many twists and turns, you cannot read too quickly as you will miss an important clue or revelation. The whole town is in uproar, as so many upstanding citizens are discovered to be part of this club. As everyone is trying to pull themselves up from this tragedy, someone is killing off the members of the club, who are still alive.

Within this intense mystery, the romance that is rekindled between Adam and Lana is very well done, as they help each other try to resolve so many of the missing pieces, as well as rise above their own demons of the past.

Shiloh Walker has written an intense story of a terrible subject, and the effect it has on the lives of others. Sweeter than Sin is also a very sensual romance between two people who need each other. The exciting climax resolves some surprising twists, but there is still more answers to come, which will be in the third book of this series.

Reviewed by Barb

Copy provided by Publisher

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A Very Levet Christmas (Guardians of Eternity 11.5) by Alexandra Ivy-a review

A VERY LEVET CHRISTMAS (Guardians of Eternity 11.5) by Alexandra Ivy-a review

A Very Levet Christmas

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ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date September 30, 2014

A gargoyle of Levet’s charm and intelligence should not be facing a solitary Christmas. True, he may appear a little unconventional, not to mention unconventionally little even for a gargoyle. But what Levet lacks in height he makes up for in loyalty, and being banned from the festivities surrounding the Queen of Weres’ new pups is quite unfair.

So when a beautiful Christmas angel begs for help in fulfilling her duties, Levet has nothing better to do than agree. Armed with a magical wand, Levet confronts Damon, a pureblood Were intent on seizing the throne. Challenging the King will put the pups at risk and drive away Damon’s potential mate, Gia. Who better to convince Damon to choose love, not war, than a gargoyle expert in “amour”? With a little magic, and a lot of Levet, this may yet be a truly wonderful Christmastime

REVIEW: A VERY LEVET CHRISTMAS is the latest novella in Alexandra Ivy’s Guardians of Eternity paranormal romance series. This is a short story featuring the little gargoyle known as Levet-the savior of the world-and a supernatural creature that only wants to be needed and loved. Hoping to celebrate Christmas with his ‘friends’, Levet is once again turned away by the very people he loves and protects.

A VERY LEVET CHRISTMAS is a storyline that finds Levet on a mission to stop a challenge for supremacy between Santiago (King of the Weres) and Damon –a pureblood Were whose heritage is rife with betrayal and mistrust. All of his life Damon has been pushed to destroy Santiago and everything he represents but when the opportunity presents itself, he will be blindsided by a small gargoyle who helps Damon see the error of his ways. When the Christmas Angel becomes trapped between worlds, she commissions Levet to carry out her duties that must be completed by midnight.

Following the same path as Charles Dickens’s –A CHRISTMAS CAROL – Levet takes our long suffering Were on a trip through his past, his present and the possible future if Damon were to succeed in his quest for the throne. As Santiago and the supernatural community celebrate the birth of his ‘pups’ they are unaware that their safety has once again been reassured by the action of a misunderstood little gargoyle.

A Very Levet Christmas is a sweet story that takes another look at a small gargoyle’s attempts to be noticed. The Guardians of Eternity series finds Levet continuously on the receiving end of disrespect and distrust but he will continue to prove himself worthy one step at a time. In A Very Levet Christmas, Levet once again, saves the day, although no one is aware of how close they came to battle.

Copy supplied by Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

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He’s So Fine by Jill Shalvis -a Review

He’s So Fine by Jill Shalvis -a Review

 

He’s So Fine
Lucky Harbor series – Book # 11
by Jill Shalvis
Release Date: September 30,2014

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Description:
For Olivia Bentley, Lucky Harbor is more than the town where she runs her new vintage shop. It’s the place where folks are friendly to strangers-and nobody knows her real name. Olivia does a good job of keeping her past buried, not getting too cozy with anyone . . . until she sees a man drowning. Suddenly she’s rushing into the surf, getting up close and personal with the hottest guy she’s ever laid hands on.

Charter boat captain Cole Donovan has no problem with a gorgeous woman throwing her arms around his neck in an effort to “save” him. In fact, he’d like to spend a lot more time skin-to-skin with Olivia. He’s just not expecting that real trouble is about to come her way. Will it bring her deeper into Cole’s heart, or will it be the end of Olivia’s days in little Lucky Harbor?

 

Review:

He’s So Fine by Jill Shalvis is the 11th book in her Lucky Harbor series. The last book of Lucky Harbor was the first book in this three book arc that concentrates on the three men who run a Charter Boat. We had Sam & Becca in the last book, and He’s So Fine belongs to Cole and Olivia. The three men are best friends, and each different, but they have one thing in common….they are hot hot hot. Very swoonworthy.

The story starts with Cole (the resident McGyver) fixing some wiring on the boat in the wee hours of the morning before clients arrive. The sparks from the wire caused Cole to fall over the boat into the freezing water. Enter Olivia, who was taking a walk and she sees Cole fall over. Thinking he is in danger, she jumps in to save him. Needless to say, they both end of saving each other, and before hypothermia sets in, they have to strip out of the wet clothes, wrapping blankets around them. Cool way to meet. Lol  

Oliva runs Unique Boutique, and not much is known about her. Becca is her neighbor and they are fast becoming friends. But Olivia is hiding something about her past, and is hesitant not to become too close to anyone, especially Cole.   You can’t help but love Cole from the start. He is a truly hunky sweetheart, who melts your heart in all his scenes. Did I say how much I loved Cole? Well Olivia, despite her desperation to avoid him, finds herself unable to resist and slowly begins to fall the sweet sexy Cole.

What follows is a wonderful romance between two people meant for each other, and each having their own issues from the past. Cole is a town favorite, as he is always helping others when they need help, and he has a devoted family, not to mention his two close friends. Olivia is the opposite, running away from the childhood that spiraled out of control, as she hides her real identity. They are so good together, you find yourself rooting for them from the start. What was really very nice about this romance was the humor throughout that Shalvis so ably added that had us laughing quite often. Will Cole and Olivia get past their issues from the past? You will have to read this wonderful story to find out.

Jill Shalvis once again creates a wonderful romance, a fabulous couple we care so much about, and the fun we had while in Lucky Harbor. Though this is 11th book, you can read this as a stand-alone, or read the first book (It’s In His Kiss) in this three book arc to follow these hot swoonworthy men who run the Charter boat in Lucky Harbor. Oh this was so much fun, not to mention hot.

Reviewed by Barb

Copy provided by Publisher

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Priestess Dreaming by Yasmine Galenorn-Review and Giveaway

Priestess Dreaming by Yasmine Galenorn-Review and Giveaway

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Priestess Dreaming
Otherworld/Sisters of the Moon #16
by Yasmine Galenorn
Genre: adult, paranormal, fantasy
Release Date:September 30, 2014

Priestess Dreaming.

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ABOUT THE BOOK: We’re the D’Artigo sisters: savvy half-human, half-Fae operatives for the Otherworld Intelligence Agency. My sister Delilah is a two-faced werecat and a Death Maiden. Menolly is a vampire married to a gorgeous werepuma. And me? I’m a Moon witch married to three gorgeous husbands, and I’m about to journey through the veils to search for a long lost legend…

With the war in Otherworld raging, the Queen of Shadow and Night summons me to her court. Aeval orders me to embark on a hunt through the mists to find an ancient ally she once knew. I must seek out The Merlin and wake him from his long sleep. But Morgaine and Bran are along for the journey, and the pair pose a threat to both me and my quest. Now, surrounded by danger on all sides, I must pray they are allies rather than enemies, as we undertake a perilous search through the labyrinth of time.

••••••••••••••••••

REVIEW:

The D’Artigo sisters just can’t catch a break. The war is still raging in Otherworld, and the battle with Shadow Wing is ongoing. Now, something is awakening ancient beings that threaten the fragile balance between the worlds and Camille is summoned to search for The Merlin, as he’s the only one who can aid Camille in destroying the evil that is about to unleash hell on them all. And, to top it all off, she has to take people that she doesn’t trust into the world of the Elder Fae as back up, along with a few of her own that she does trust.

Of course, there are things going on at home. Someone opened a rogue portal in their living room of all places and pixies are running amuck in downtown Seattle. Once they take care of those two things, they head out to find The Merlin. They face a daunting task to say the least. It’s a very unforgiving landscape and they encounter creatures that do not want them to find that which they seek. But once they find The Merlin, a series of events unfold that change a lot of things for a lot of people. Oh, and while they’re there, the full moon rises and Camille is swept into the hunt with the Moon Mother. And what she encounters leaves her devastated. However, once they are able to make it back home with The Merlin in tow, they have but a few minutes to prepare for battle with the evil creature that has broken free from his prison. Like I said, they just can’t seem to catch a break………

There is a lot going on in this series. It started out with their battle against Shadow Wing and trying to secure the spirit seals, but has evolved into much more. You feel that all of the sisters are destined to be more than what they are. Not that what they are isn’t impressive enough. But they each grow stronger with each story. And, Camille, in my opinion, is destined for something BIG. I always love the fact that we get to see all of the regulars in each of the books, but to be honest, I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed with all of new things going on. It’s like the original battle with Shadow Wing has taken a backseat and trying to keep up with whom and what they’re fighting is getting more complicated as things progress.

With that said, I’m vested in these characters and their journey and know that Galenorn will do them justice. I only wish that I could see where all of this is headed. I do love the main characters and the prominent secondary characters and can’t wait to see what they face next. There is love and loss in this one, loss that I didn’t see coming, and I know you won’t either. Well done Yasmine Galenorn.

Reviewed by Vickie M

Copy supplied by Netgalley

Giveaway

Yasmine’s publisher is offering a paper copy of PRIESTESS DREAMING to one lucky commenter at The Reading Cafe.

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8. Giveaway runs from October 1-6, 2014

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Cover Reveal & Giveaway-Undesired Lust (Reckless Beat #3) by Eden Summers

Cover Reveal & Giveaway: Undesired Lust (Reckless Beat #3) by Eden Summers

Undesired Lust

Title: Undesired Lust (Reckless Beat, #3)
Author: Eden Summers
Series: Reckless Beat
Release Date: November 2014

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https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22126926-undesired-lust

They used to be the perfect team.

Two years ago, songstress Sidney Higgins ruined her life by sleeping with not one, but two of the famous Reckless Beat men, Mason Lynch and Sean Taiden. Their night of intimate celebration turned into a worldwide sensation when the video Mason vowed to keep private was uploaded to the internet, destroying her squeaky-clean reputation and turning the world against her. Now she’s broken and left without hope, trying to find the one thing that can get her back on her feet.

A mistake neither one of them is willing to forgive.

When the sex tape went viral and his best friends held him accountable, Mason bore the stigma of asshole with pride. Now, bitterness has destroyed him, driving away his muse and making him worthless in the industry he loves. There’s only one option left to reclaim his creativity, but that would mean collaborating with a woman who wants to castrate him with a plastic knife.

A palpable chemistry even hate can’t diminish.

Forced to work together, neither one of them is prepared for the undesired lust which immediately takes hold. The lies fade away, exposing the truth; however, it also awakens a threat from their past. The person responsible for tearing them apart is back to ensure they don’t rekindle a spark. With their safety in the balance, Sidney and Mason need to determine what they’re willing to risk to reclaim a relationship they wish they’d never lost.

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Reckless Beat Series

FREE for a limited time-BLIND ATTRACTION (Reckless Beat #1):
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PASSIONATE ADDICTION (Reckless Beat #2) :
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RECKLESS WEEKEND (Reckless Beat 2.5):
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About The Author

Eden SummersEden Summers is a true blue Aussie, living in regional New South Wales with her two energetic young boys and a quick witted husband.
In late 2010, Eden’s romance obsession could no longer be sated by reading alone, so she decided to give voice to the sexy men and sassy women in her mind.

Eden can’t resist alpha dominance, dark features and sarcasm in her fictional heroes and loves a strong heroine who knows when to bite her tongue but also serves retribution with a feminine smile on her face.

Eden Summers Website / Eden Summers Facebook Page / Twitter / Goodreads

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Here In My Heart by Anna DeStefano-a review

Here In My Heart by Anna DeStefano-a review

Here in My Heart

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ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date September 30, 2014

Live and work together, or lose everything that matters…

The ultimatum tilts Dru Hampton’s contented life in Chandlerville, Georgia, on its ear. The man that Vivian, her cantankerous boss and benefactor, wants Dru to partner with—live with—is Brad Douglas, who’s let Dru down every way a man can.

Sheriff’s deputy Brad Douglas has come a long way since his rebellious youth. He’s back home to care for Vivian, his ill grandmother. He’s stayed out of Dru’s way all these years to make up for the hurt he once caused her. Now, the delightfully mischievous Vivian’s dying wish is for them to rebuild at least a working relationship together…and she’s betting on them rediscovering much more.

The family business and the Douglas home that Dru and Brad both cherish will be sold if they don’t resolve their differences. Can these childhood sweethearts make up and reclaim each other’s hearts before it’s too late?

••••••••••••••••••••••

Review:

Even though Dru Hampton was raised in the foster system, she lucked out. She was taken in by a loving family and has built a life to be proud of. Her biggest regret has always been Brad Douglas. Brad was her older brother’s best friend, and someone she grew up around. Even though they always treated her like one of the guys, she was head over heels for Brad. Until one night changed everything. Acting on impulse, she let him know of her feelings for him, only to have him push her away. Brad’s actions not only broke Dru’s heart, but tore apart her family and then everything changed. Not only was she broken hearted over Brad’s rejection, but her brother left town, as did Brad. After coming to terms with what had happened, she forged ahead and became someone others looked up to. Especially the kids at the YMCA where she volunteered.

However, when Dru’s benefactor, Vivian, fell ill, it was up to Dru to contact Brad to get him to come home so that Vivian could get her affairs in order. When Brad shows up, he and Dru reconnect, even if only to satisfy Vivian. But, once they hear what Vivian asks of them, Dru doesn’t know if she can see it through. Brad had broken her heart and to say she has trust issues is like saying Lake Superior is a cow pond. Even though she feels that she wouldn’t be where she is today without Vivian, she just doesn’t know if she can put herself out there with Brad again, even if he does seem to be trying to make up for his past sins. And, once Dru figures out that there were things set in motion a long time ago for her benefit, and that things weren’t quite what they seemed, she knows that her life will never be the same.

Here in my Heart is a wonderfully written story about coming to terms with one’s past in order to forge a future. Dru is a strong, albeit a little naïve, character. She is everything you’d want your daughter to be with strong character and a huge loving heart. Brad is wonderful as well. He knows he messed up when he was younger, but has steadily moved forward with his life trying to atone for his past mistakes. The secondary characters are wonderful as well, and I can’t wait to read more about them. This is my first book by Anna DeStefano, but it will not be my last. If you’re looking for a quick read with a wholesome and sweet storyline, this one is for you. I shed a few tears at the end and I can’t wait for the next installment. Well done Anna DeStefano, very well done.

Copy supplied by the publicist

Reviewed by Vickie M

About The Author Black and Yellow

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Anna DeStefanoNationally bestselling author Anna DeStefano has searched her entire life for the soul of the matter at the heart of her world’s mysteries. As a small child, she drew from her experiences, senses, and dreams to paint a lush fantasy world, filled with endless possibility and characters of her own creation. Putting pen to paper, Anna transforms these inner landscapes into rich storytelling.

Hers is a realistic but optimistic vision, searching for hope and transformation through intense emotional journeys. Her fuel–the inner passions and conflicts of the characters she crafts. Much like a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly, Anna’s characters face the ultimate of human choices: finding the courage to conquer their fears and thrive until, despite every obstacle, they become the beautiful things they’re meant to be.

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The Red Wolf’s Prize by Regan Walker-Review and Excerpt

The Red Wolf’s Prize by Regan Walker-Review and Excerpt

The Red Wolf's Prize

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About the book: Release Date October 1, 2014

Sir Renaud de Pierrepont, the Norman knight known as the Red Wolf for the beast he slayed with his bare hands, hoped to gain lands with his sword. A year after the Conquest, King William rewards his favored knight with Talisand, the lands of an English thegn slain at Hastings, and orders him to wed the heiress that goes with them, Lady Serena.

SHE WOULD LOVE HIM AGAINST HER WILL

Serena wants nothing to do with the fierce warrior to whom she has been unwillingly given, the knight who may have killed her father. When she learns the Red Wolf is coming to claim her, she dyes her flaxen hair brown and flees, disguised as a servant, determined to one day regain her lands. But her escape goes awry and she is brought back to live among her people, though not unnoticed by the new Norman lord.

Deprived of his promised bride, the Red Wolf turns his attention to the comely servant girl hoping to woo her to his bed. But the wench resists, claiming she hates all Normans.

As the passion between them rises, Serena wonders, can she deny the Norman her body? Or her heart?

•••••••••••••••••••

Review: The Red Wolf’s Prize begins with Lady Serena of Talisand pondering her future. She has received word that King William decreed she is to wed the new Norman Lord of Talisand, who should be arriving any day. But, she knows that she could never love a Norman who battled his way across England and helped his king conquer her and her people. She knows her brother is to the north, in Scotland, and is determined to leave Talisand in order to reunite with him. Although she will miss her people, she knows she must leave to escape her fate. She would have done well to know that fate is a fickled mess sometimes………..

Sir Renaud, and his knights are exhausted, having fought across England for what seemed like forever. Once they are given their leave by King William, they head to Talisand and are pleased with the sight before them. Even though the people seem nervous, they are welcoming to Renaud, now Lord Talisand, and his fellow Normans. It doesn’t take Renaud long to realize that his promised bride, the beautiful Lady Serena, is not in Talisand and sends a contingent of his men to search for her. Good news? They find a small group of men and women and bring them back. The bad news? Lady Serena is nowhere to be found. However, there is a very attractive servant girl, Sarah, who catches the Lord’s attention and when he tries to woo her, things don’t go quite as he’d have liked them to.

As Lord Talisand becomes more comfortable with his new people, and they with him, he starts noticing that some of his men and some of the women of Talisand are growing more comfortable with each other as well. But when one of the local women is attacked by one of his men, only to be saved by Sarah, he knows that he is at a crossroads with his people and his next steps will either earn their trust or it will earn their ire. He has also noticed that Sarah is most fierce in her protection of all of the people of Talisand. How could he not be the same for his people and his new home? The one thing that would make it all better? His promised bride, Lady Serena at his side. But could she ever come to love him, or would she forever see him as a conqueror of her people and her land? Well my friends, you’ll have to read to find out. And, oh what a read it is………

Regan Walker has once again written a story that grabs hold and doesn’t let go. Serena is absolutely my favorite heroine dreamed up by Regan Walker to date! Her loyalty, her fierceness and her heart will endear her to everyone who reads this story. Her understanding of what her people want and need is so touching. She is truly a force to be reckoned with. Renaud is a perfect match for her. He is as loyal and fierce as she is, and their chemistry is palpable. The cast of supporting characters are terrific in their own right. I truly can’t wait to read more about them.

The Red Wolf is another wonderfully written story by Regan Walker. If you have read my reviews of her previous books, you know that I have raved about her character building and her masterful world building, and this one is no exception. The way she weaves actual historical events into her stories is unparalleled. There is intrigue, action and a beautifully developed romance. As you read her stories, you can see it and you can most definitely feel it. The Red Wolf is ultimately a story of coming to terms with what is and what can be, and letting go of what was. This is Regan’s first foray into the Medieval genre, but from what I’ve read, thankfully, it won’t be the last. Very well done Regan Walker, very very well done.

Copy supplied by the author

Reviewed by Vickie M

 Click here for :  The Red Wolf’s Prize trailer

excerpt

 

 

 

Red Wolf Excerpt: the Red Wolf meets Serena, disguised as the servant, Sarah

Renaud lingered at the high table in the hall until he glimpsed the servant girl with the brown plait carry a pile of linen through the entry heading toward the stairs to the bedchambers. Slowly rising, he nodded to Geoff and followed after her.
Quietly, he stepped through the open door of his chamber. The girl had her back to him as she freshened the bed, the stack of clean linen resting on a nearby chest. He did not acknowledge her but went directly to the trestle table, poured a goblet of wine and sat, pretending to examine a drawing of the lands surrounding the manor.
She turned. “I can come back later, my lord.” She spoke meekly, barely looking at him as she hurriedly finished with the bed and began a hasty retreat to the door.
He replied in the English tongue, as he did to all save his men. “Nay, you may stay. Your work will not disturb me.”
Out of the corner of his eye, he saw her back stiffen. Slowly, she retraced her steps and resumed her work. Her movements were rushed as if she were trying to complete her assigned tasks in haste. Was she nervous at being alone with him? Even with that, Renaud thought she was graceful as she walked to the shelves near where he sat. She held her head high, unusual for a servant in the presence of her lord. Though her long plait was the dull color of country earth, her profile was refined and her features delicate. He rose and silently moved to stand behind her where she dusted a carved box.
She must have sensed his approach.
“My lord?” she said, turning to face him.
Blue-violet eyes held his gaze only a moment before looking down at the floor. Set in her ivory face they reminded him of violets in the snow. So mesmerized was he that, for a moment, he forgot his question.
“Your name is Sarah?”
Keeping her eyes focused on the floor, she said, “Yea, my lord.”
“How long have you been at Talisand?”
“All my life, my lord.” Her voice was soft, a low purr, and with her words a flowery scent drifted to his nose. He was captivated and wanted to touch her. How long had it been since he’d had a woman? And this one was causing his manhood to stir.
Turing back to the shelf, she resumed dusting the carved box, as if to put an end to the conversation. His gaze shifted to her hand as she set down the box. Delicate fingers and ivory skin. It was not the hand of a kitchen wench.
“Let me see your hand.” She started at his request, and though he could see she wanted to resist, she did not fight him when he reached for her hand and brought it close to his body turning her palm upward.
It told him much.
“These blisters are new. You have not always worked in the kitchens nor done the wet work of the laundry, have you?”
She shook her head in silent agreement.
“What were your tasks before I came to Talisand?”
Looking down at her feet, she said, “I was with the Lady Serena, my lord.”
“Ah, a lady’s handmaiden then.” So that is where the girl learned to speak so well, for her speech was not that of an ordinary servant nor her manner that of a scullery maid.
He waited for her to say more but when she did not, he said, “Tell me about her.”
She looked up. “What would you know, my lord?” Blue violet eyes held his. He could get lost in those eyes.
“How does she look?”
“She is tall and her hair is the color of summer wheat, my lord.”
“And her character?”
Turning her gaze again to the floor, she hesitated before speaking. “She loves her people and her family, my lord. She is very loyal. Had she been a man, she would have fought with her father at Hastings. Most of all, she loves Talisand and would die for its people.”
Her voice, nearly breaking at the end, told him her words were spoken with deep emotion. She was close to the Lady of Talisand and to the old thegn.
“I’m told her brother took the lord’s place for a time,” he said, hoping she would continue to talk.
She raised her eyes to his. “Yea, Steinar did lead Talisand for a time, but then he was drawn away by other battles.” When she spoke the young man’s name, a tender look came into her eyes. Did she love the old lord’s son? Mayhap she was his leman. The possibility was not to his liking.
Still holding her hand, he looked down at her palm seeing other signs. “These are the calluses of an archer. How is it a lady’s handmaiden comes to use a bow?”
The girl’s eyes shifted to her hand where Renaud had begun moving his thumb across her palm in slow sensual circles. He was not unaffected and, he suspected, neither was she.
“Rhodri taught me, my…my lord.” She spoke in a halting whisper, confirming his touch was disrupting her thoughts. Then she added hastily, “I was not the only one. It was the old lord’s desire that Rhodri should teach all at Talisand who cared to learn.”
Renaud remembered that when the young servant women had been returned to the demesne, Sir Niel had taken several bows from them.
He stopped stroking her palm. She tried to pull back her hand but he had no intention of releasing her. “Who is this Rhodri?”
“He is a Welsh bard, my lord, who is also skilled with a bow. The thegn met him on his travels and invited him here. He lived among us for several years.”
“Where is the Welshman now?”
“I know not, my lord. Peradventure he is in Wales, though his music and his skill with a bow are much in demand. He may yet be in England.”
“A bard and a bowman…an unusual combination.” Renaud frowned in concentration as he considered the idea.
“Not for a Welshman,” she said, matter-of-factly.
Renaud smiled, amused. She was so serious, so insistent, this servant who acted like no servant he’d ever known. “Aye, mayhap you are right. Many Welshmen would have both talents.”
He let go of her hand, but remained close. He knew now what had attracted his men for he, too, was falling under her spell. She was beautiful and well spoken and something about her enticed him. If she had been the leman of this brother of Lady Serena’s or the bard Rhodri, it was possible she was not a maiden and would accept an invitation to come to his bed.

about the author
Regan WalkerI didn’t start out as a writer of romance, oh no. Although I loved to write stories as a child, by the time I got to college, more serious pursuits were encouraged. So, naturally, I became a lawyer. Who needs adverbs as a lawyer? But after years of serving clients in private practice and several stints in high levels of government, I decided it was time for a change. My work had given me a love of international travel (I’ve been to over 40 countries…) and a feel for the demands of the “Crown” on its subjects. Hence, my first novels are all about a demanding Prince Regent who thinks of his subjects as his private talent pool.

I promise my novels will always sweep you away to another time and another place. I want you to experience adventure as well as love.

I live in San Diego with my wonderful Golden Retriever “Link.” I have one son who is a young entrepreneur and, though he looks like a Highlander of old, he would never read a romance novel. So like a man, no?

Twitter: @RegansReview (https://twitter.com/RegansReview)
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Deconstructing Lila by Shannon Leigh – a Review

Deconstructing Lila by Shannon Leigh – a Review

 

Deconstructing LilaAmazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / The Book Despository / BAM

 

Description:
Preservationist Lila Gentry returns to her small Texas hometown to restore the famous Chisholm Trail whorehouse where her great-great-grandmother was a madam in the 1880s. On her agenda is winning back Jake, the one that got away. But how do you rope a man who doesn’t want to be wrangled?

Jake lives by one creed:  Keep it simple. His ex showing up in town complicates his life and makes him think about things he’d rather forget.

When Lila’s restoration project is threatened before it even begins, she turns to Jake for help. Working together stirs up old feelings, but while Lila and Jake always sizzle between the sheets—or wherever the moment takes them—it will involve some sweet-talking and finesse to bring these two together.

 

Review;

Let me start off by saying I’ve never read anything by Shannon Leigh before and it won’t be the last. I really enjoyed Deconstructing Lila. Ms. Leigh writes a story with realistic, well developed characters, that is heartfelt and emotional. It’s a story about love lost, fear to hope for the future, then once again finding love by letting go of the fear and allowing hope to blossom.

I found Lila to be a strong female lead that’s likeable and easy to relate to. We learn about Lila’s background through her granny, who’s a hoot by the way. I loved her granny and I’ll get to her later on. After spending ten years apart from her beloved granny and love of her life Jake, Lila comes home a changed woman and is bound and determined to show Jake that all isn’t lost between them. Now that she’s grown up, dealt with the past, and Jake’s cancer, she’s ready to prove to him that they can have a future if he’d only let her in, instead of pushing her away, like he did ten years ago.

Jake is a character that broke my heart. We see from the get go that he never stop loving his wife, but due to the uncertainty with his cancer and treatments, he feared leaving her behind through death if his treatments didn’t work. In trying to protect her from his life, he pushed away the one thing he really needed, Lila’s love. Jake is a very honourable, proud, respectable and sexy man, and doesn’t know how to let hope for a future into his life. Hope being his Lila.

The emotion in this story is very real and tangible. It just pours off the pages and made me wanting to keep reading to see how Jake and Lila’s story would end. It’s very easy to see Jakes point of view regarding Lila, but we also see where Jake needs to just let go of his fear and embrace the love and life together that Lila’s offering, no matter how long or short a time he has on this planet. Life is to uncertain to let fear hold us back, we need to embrace it with everything we have, and Jake finally comes to that conclusion in a very dramatic and Texas fashion way, tornados be damned. Along with the emotional journey between Lila and Jake I found that Ms. Leigh did a fine job of balancing all that emotion through some of her secondary characters. She brought in some humour to lighten the mood at just the right spots with Lila’s granny and the Bombshells(her bowling team and gossip friends). When these gals get together you never know what they will do or say. They are a lot of fun in a scene and kept me in stitches as they gave poor Lila advice on how to win back Jake. We also get some humour between Jake and his friend/co-worker Casler. I hope he will have his story told down the road as he’s rather mysterious so far to me.

All in all this is a well written story, with well rounded and realistic characters. I loved the emotional journey that Lila and Jake take to get back to one another. The love scenes are steamy, emotional and romantic. Their love for each other is as real today as it was ten years ago. The emotion and humour in the story are well balanced and make for a satisfying read. I’m so glad I had the chance to read this one and get to know Ms. Leigh as a writer. I’ll be sure to read more by this author in the future.

Until next time, happy reading everyone.

Reviewed by Marcie

Copy provided by Publisher

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