Archives

Review: FACING FIRE by HelenKay Dimon

Title: Facing Fire (Bad Boys Undercover, #3)

Author: HelenKay Dimon

Category: Romantic Suspense

Source: Purchased from Barnes & Noble

Reviewed by Amy

* * * * *

Facing Fire by HelenKay Dimon is a fast paced, action packed romantic suspense. It follows Josiah from the Alliance and Sutton, a PI who stumbles across the Alliance while going after the same target as the group – Benton. He is an evil son of a gun and one that I despised more than most villains in the books I read.  Josiah and Sutton’s romance is back and forth but so dynamic due to the undeniable chemistry. It was quite a rush of a book. I was a bit tired after reading it.

If you have read any of Dimon’s other books in the series, you know the Alliance is a tight knit group backing one another up. In Facing Fire we see that so clearly with Sutton being tossed into the mix. I love watching a group of people stand together and fight evil. That’s what this team does. They sacrifice so much to protect so many.

Josiah is an interesting character. He has so much angst in him that it came off the pages while I was reading and was almost a bit too much at times, but then I can’t imagine going through what he has. Sutton is the perfect partner for him. She pushes him when he needs it, let’s him be when he needs some alone time and wants him for exactly who he is. She isn’t asking him to change. He need that strong companion. Dimon did a very nice job with their romance as well.

There are a lot of surprises in Facing Fire for the characters which adds to the excitement of the book. While we get Benton’s point of view, we don’t get the whole picture so we are just as surprised as the characters. Normally I am not a fan of the antagonist’s point of view, but Dimon does just enough in Facing Fire to show Benton’s crazy. Dimon does a fabulous job with the ending to the story as well. I was quite pleased!

If you like romantic suspense, give Facing Fire a read. While it is part of a series, each book is connected by characters while they each have their own plot. It’s a great story!

* * * * *

Review: THE PRETENDER by HelenKay Dimon

Whew! The Pretender by HelenKay Dimon is a fantastic romantic suspense / mystery in the Games People Play Series. I was sucked in from the beginning and could not put it down until I knew who was the guilty. My emotions were all over the place with this one. I love that we get to follow the clues along with the characters in this story.  Along with the murder mystery, The Pretender follows the romance of Harris and Gabby. Two very flawed characters looking to fit somewhere and with someone even if they don’t realize it.

The pace of the story was spot on and I found myself hanging on to each word. I felt like I couldn’t read it fast enough yet I had to go slow enough so I didn’t miss anything. Harris and friend Damon come to Tabitha Island to keep the heat off Gabby, who is falsely being accused of killing her sister by her uncle. Of course, they come in undercover sort of. Sparks fly between Gabby and Harris in a primal, physical way and eventually in an emotional way. They take a different path to love then a lot of people. The intimate scenes are smoking hot! Dimon does a fantastic job with the show of those scenes.

As with any series, I adore characters from past books and Wren (from The Fixer) is always a presence in any of the books in the series. The scene near the beginning with Wren, Emery, and Harris was fantastic. It shows so much of each of their personalities. Just perfect. I was glad to be introduced to Damon, another Quint Five member, and hope to read a book about him in the future.

If you are looking for a romantic suspense and/or mystery book that will catch you from the very first page and won’t let you stop thinking about the characters until after you finish the book, give The Pretender a read. While it is part of a series, each book can be read as a stand alone with its own plot.

Title: The Pretender (Games People Play, #3)

Author: HelenKay Dimon

Category: Romantic Suspense

Source: Purchased from Barnes & Noble

 

Review: SINCE LAST CHRISTMAS by Jeffe Kennedy

I recently finished Since Last Christmas by Jeffe Kennedy and all I can think about is that I want more. It was so hard to put down! Since Last Christmas is the 3rd book in the Missed Connections series and follows Amy and Jon (and a little of Brad). I enjoyed the fact that the characters are not your typical romance heroes and heroines. They seem more like regular people – almost like I was listening to Amy tell me about her past few months over drinks or something. The characters seem human. They have their quirks and flaws.

Amy has her life planned out, or at least her next year. She knows just how she will be proposed to. How she will spend the next few months of her life. Everything will be perfect. Until it’s not. When things don’t work out the way she expects, she is lost. But is quickly found by someone she never thought about.

Kennedy is such a fantastic storyteller. Since Last Christmas is interesting, the pacing is on point, and I just fell in love with the characters and their lives. The romance between Jon and Amy is so awesome to follow. It was fun to hang out with them and I really want to be friends with the Fab 5!

Getting to catch up with characters from past books in the series is always wonderful and I look forward to the next few stories with Ice and Julie. Missed Connections is an amazing series and while it is enjoyed more (in my opinion) by reading in order, you can read any of them on their own. If you are looking for a contemporary romance that is different than many you read about, Give Since Last Christmas a try!

Title: Since Last Christmas (Missed Connections, #3)

Author: Jeffe Kennedy

Category: Contemporary Romance

Source: Copy received from Author

 

 

Review: CROSS COUNTRY CHRISTMAS by Emily Leigh

Emily Leigh is quickly becoming an auto-read author for me after just two books! Cross Country Christmas was a fun holiday novella that takes you from Georgia to Washington in a few days but with lots of emotion, laughter, and love. Who doesn’t want to go on a road trip with a hot, sexy, Country Movie star?

In Cross Country Christmas, Gracie needs to get out of town and wants to head home to Seattle for Christmas. With the grounded flights due to weather, she opts to rent a car and drive there. Country Movie icon, Kale, needs to get to Montana ASAP. With one last rental care available, the two decide to share it and the road trip begins.

Leigh does an incredible job of developing interesting and lovable characters in this story with a unique plot for each character and weaved together effortlessly. Even the scenes we think will be typical cliche romance are done with a twist and entertain even the hardest core romance fan. It’s a fresh story, one that I wasn’t quite sure how it would end.

It was hard to put down but so easy to get lost in Cross Country Christmas from the very first page and is everything you want in a holiday novella. Give it a read!

Title: Cross Country Christmas

Author: Emily Leigh

Category: Contemporary Romance

Source: Purchased from Amazon

Review: HOLIDAY WISHES by Jill Shalvis

I absolutely love holiday novellas! Holiday Wishes by Jill Shalvis is the type of story I look forward to each Christmas season. It is short, sweet, sexy, and entertaining from start to finish. It left me all warm, fuzzy, and happy sighing at the end. What else could a girl want?

In Holiday Wishes, Sean drives his brother and friends up to a Bed and Breakfast to celebrate his brother’s bachelor weekend. He unexpectedly runs into an old flame in Lotti, the Inn Keeper. Boy is that a blast from his past. Little does he realize Lotti’s feelings towards him are a little different.

Shalvis tells the story of how Sean and Lotti find their way back to a romance. It’s fun, it’s light, it’s super sexy. A lot happens in just a few days which makes it a bit of a whirlwind. If you enjoy holiday romance novels, give Holiday Wishes a read!

Title: Holiday Wishes

Author: Jill Shalvis

Category: Contemporary Romance

Source: Purchased from Amazon

 

Review: SWEET THING by Emily Leigh

Sweet Thing by Emily Leigh is a book I have had on my to-be-read list for a long time. After finishing it today, I am kicking myself for not reading it earlier! Leigh is a new-to-me author so I didn’t really know what I was missing. Well, I have already looked up her website to see what other books she has written that I can get my hands on! Sweet Thing is the first in the Hale Street series and we are introduced so characters in Sweet Thing that we will read about in future books. After reading Sweet Thing, I find myself wanting to eat cupcakes, remodel my house, and snuggle my husband a little longer each night. I love when an author can inspire my life in an entertaining fiction romance!

Violet Calloway is the heroine that every reader wants to be or befriend. Violet cares so much about everyone around her and doesn’t do anything less than 100% in life. Even if it means sacrificing her own happiness. Nick Morello is the contractor that is hired to remodel an old building on Hale street for Violets new bakery. As you can imagine (this is a romance after all), sparks fly, and the chemistry is off the charts for these two. Their romance was such fun to watch  – from the easy way they communicated, to the friendship and respect that built between them, to the hot and steamy bedroom moments. What I loved about Violet and Nick is that even when they had hurdles to get through neither of them acted immature or ridiculous. They treated each other with such respect and maintained their professional relationship. It is what I am looking for when reading romance at this stage in my life.

The supporting characters in Sweet Thing were equally engaging to me. They each have a story that I want to know about. What happened in their pasts to make them the way they are today? There is something surprising that happens to a couple of the supporting characters and it had me looking ahead a the other Hale Street books. I was relieved to see that we get to catch up with these two that are so prominent in Sweet Thing.

If you are looking for a fantastic story that is entertaining from start to finish, has characters that make you feel like you are already friends with them, and a hot and steamy romance, give Sweet Thing a read. And if you have yet to read Emily Leigh, you need to start. Her writing is easy, smart, and she is great at showing the scenes. You can taste the cupcakes that Ivy makes and feel the shivers that Violet gets when Nick touches her all based on her descriptions. What do you have to lose?

Title: Sweet Thing (Hale Street, #1)

Author: Emily Leigh

Category: Contemporary Romance

Source: Purchased from Barnes & Noble

Review: THE NEGOTIATOR by HelenKay Dimon

The Negotiator by HelenKay Dimon was everything I expected and more! For those that have read the other books in the Games People Play series, this one features Garrett and Lauren. We have followed Garrett in The Fixer and The Enforcer where he stole many of the scenes! His snarky and sarcastic personality was a little softer in The Negotiator. That has a lot to do with Lauren and the circumstances surrounding her.

Dimon had me sucked into the story from the very first page and I couldn’t put it down until the very end. Even in such a short story, the mystery had time to develop and we had the chance to watch a romance unfold and fall in love with the characters. The chemistry between Garrett and Lauren is intense once they act on it! Lauren is the perfect match for Garrett. She challenges him because she is quite strong and independent herself. I hope we get glimpses of them through future stories.

I enjoyed the roles that Matthias and Kayla from The Enforcer played in this story. Garrett and Matthias are quite entertaining together and with Kayla and Lauren being best friends it made sense to see them as much as we did. If you are looking for a murder mystery story set around the holidays with an amazing romance, give The Negotiator a read!

Title: The Negotiator (Games People Play, #2.5)

Author: HelenKay Dimon

Category: Romantic Suspense

Source: Purchased from Barnes & Noble