Saturday, February 19, 2011
Stock Up Saturday
Midnight Bay - Book 2
By Janet Chapman
Publisher: Pocket Star
Release Date: January 25, 2011
First impressions can be difficult to overcome and Maddy Kimble's first impression of William Kilkenny promises to be more difficult than most. A ninth century Irish warrior cursed by a witch to spend eternity as a dragon - a very cranky dragon -William has made his way to modern-day Maine in the hopes that Kenzie Gregor (hero of Moonlight Warrior, first book in the trilogy) can help him break the curse and return him to his human body. When the transformation occurs in the middle of town, leaving William human but buck-naked and looking a lot like Sasquatch (personal grooming being low on the list of ninth century priorities), he finally indulges in the lust he's been feeling for Maddy by kissing the daylights out of her in front of the entire town. For a modern, independent single mom who's sworn off men, it's not exactly the best way to win her heart.
Maddy Kimble has more going on in her life than she can handle. She's taking care of her mother, her young daughter, her rebellious brother and the patients at the local nursing home where she works as a nurse. She's also dealing with the impending marriage of her ex-husband to his 18-year-old pregnant girlfriend. Who can blame her for not wanting to get involved with a stubborn man shrouded in mystery who seems to know nothing about life in the 21st century? But she hasn't counted on William's persistence, or his charm, or his reliability, or the fact that, with the help of her elderly patients, he cleans up very nicely indeed...not to mention the fact that, after six years of silence, her hormones are finally doing the happy dance. Gradually, William begins to win her over but Maddy is terrified of giving her heart away again and William thinks he has no heart to give. Then, of course, there's that little matter of working up the courage to tell Maddy that he's a former dragon from the ninth century. That should go over well!
Chapman brings us another fast-paced, humorous (William's attempts to learn how to drive are hilarious) and steamy romance with snappy dialogue, sexy alpha warriors, independent modern women, mysterious otherworldly occurrences and dangerous demons in the bodies of wolves who threaten the lives of our hero and heroine and those they hold dear. There's a solid secondary cast. I fell in love with the spunky nursing home residents and William's interactions with both them and Maddy's young daughter made my heart melt. We also catch up with characters from Moonlight Warrior and meet the hero and heroine of Chapman's July release, Mystical Warrior.
I've been looking forward to William's story since he first appeared in Chapman's books. I'm happy to say he was all I had hoped for! Though there are references to people and occurrences from Chapman's Highlander series, it's not necessary to have read those books first (though I highly recommend the entire series). However, as much of William and Maddy's back story is told in Moonlight Warrior, the first book in this spin-off trilogy, I strongly encourage readers to read Moonlight Warrior before beginning Dragon Warrior.
By Monica Burns
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Release Date: March 1, 2011
From the moment I heard that Monica Burns’s next historical would feature an older woman and a younger man (who is a virgin!), I knew I had to read it. It was a combination that I couldn’t resist. And I wasn’t let down. Pleasure Me is a passionate romance that packs an emotional punch.
As a seasoned courtesan, forty-one year old Lady Ruth Atwood is accustomed to her intimate relationships not lasting overly long. But when her latest lover leaves her for a much younger woman, Ruth is hurt. Knowing how important looks and youth are in her business, she fears her days of being a mistress may be over. Or at least, numbered. Luckily, she has her work with her orphanage to occupy her time. While visiting some property she hopes to buy to house extra orphans, she learns that someone else has an interest in the small estate: Garrick, Baron Stratfield. The same handsome, young man who danced and flirted with her the night before.
Garrick is instantly smitten the first moment he lays eyes on Lady Ruth. He wants her badly, but must be careful. Garrick has learned to control his desires over the years because he is hiding a painful secret. Due to a physical deformity, he has never been intimate with a woman. He tried at the age of seventeen and was humiliated by the girl and his uncle. In order to keep appearances within society, Garrick needs a mistress . . . in name only. But the more time he spends with Ruth, the more difficult it becomes for him to do just that.
Monica Burns has crafted a beautiful story full of tender emotion and characters you completely empathize with. Ruth is sensitive about her age, just as Garrick is sensitive about his condition. You can’t help but root for these two! Throw in a little blackmail and a murder and you’ve got yourself a wonderful historical romance.
The Shadow Reapers, Book 1
By Sarah McCarty
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Release Date: February 1, 2011
A breed of werewolf soldiers engineered to kill on command, the Shadow Reapers went rogue at the end of the Civil War. Now, exacting justice by their own code, they long to feel human as they contain the beast within…
The War Between the States may be over, but Isaiah Jones continues to fight the battle inside him. He is neither fully wolf nor fully human and the only way he can find any semblance of peace and sanity is when he is near Adelaide Cameron. As he watches her from afar, his desire to be with her grows. Any relationship between the two of them is forbidden by Reaper law, but when Addy is abducted, Isaiah comes to her rescue, Reaper law be damned.
Addy likes her life neat and orderly. Ever since she was kidnapped by Indians years ago----and then rescued by her cousins---she has to feel like she is in control. When she is abducted, Addy’s orderly life goes straight to hell, and she’s not sure if she’ll make it out of this situation with her body and mind intact. But help comes from a stranger who makes her feel alive for the first time in her life. While on some level she finds Isaiah frightening, she is intrigued and attracted to this enigmatic man. Will his dark secret repel Addy when it’s revealed or will she be willing to tame the beast within?
This was quite unlike any werewolf novel I’ve ever read. The Wild West after the Civil War as a setting and werewolves who were created by mysterious individuals certainly made for a compelling read. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series; I’m dying to know who created these werewolf soldiers and I want to know more about Isaiah’s life and the other Reaper’s before they were changed. Action, intrigue, laughter, and plenty of heat---Reaper’s Justice has it all.
by Kimberly Killion
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Release Date: February 9, 2011
King of his own castle, Dunrobin Castle, and Chieftain of Clan Sutherland, Laird Magnus Sutherland is a man used to getting his way. His way with any woman around! His love for all types of women is common knowledge and his sexual prowess is talked about everywhere. Nagged nearly to death by his mother to sire an heir, Magnus decides to betroth himself to the sister of the neighboring clan chieftain. Secretly, though, Magnus wonders if any one woman can stir his heart and not just his body.
When his betrothed arrives at Dunrobin Castle, Magnus is shocked to find the chieftain has two sisters – the younger, more voluptuous Vanna and the thirty-something, tell-it-like-it-is Effie. While everyone in the Castle (including mommy dearest) believes Vanna is the wiser choice for Magnus’ bride, Magnus is intrigued by the older Effie. Determined to find the right match, Magnus enjoys getting to know each sister but it doesn’t take long for Magnus to know that Effie is the one for him. But now he must use all his strategy skills and wiles to convince her that he is the one for her.
I don’t think anyone else does a better job writing hot highlanders than Kimberly Killion. Magnus is one hot highlander! This story is full of what Kimberly does best – witty, sexy writing than pulls you in and make you cheer for the hero and the heroine.
As a side note, I just have to mention that Kimberly’s dedicates this book to her inspiration for Magnus … none other than hunky Gerard Butler. I love this!