Sunday, September 26, 2010

Review: The Ghost of Goodacre Hall by Cassandra Curtis

Title: The Ghost of Goodacre Hall
Author: Cassandra Curtis

Read copy: eBook
Published: March 8, 2010
Publisher: Smashwords
ISBN: 0000833533
ISBN-13: 2940000833537

Matthew Lambert tried to run from his past, but when he decides to renovate an old house, he is forced to resurrect more than ghosts. Intrigued by the paranormal, Cadence Martin always loved Goodacre Hall. When she gets an invitation to attend the Victorian house's grand opening, she decides to see if the new owners are aware they just inherited the resident ghost, her great-aunt Miriam.

My rating:

Short, sweet and funny. A perfect little treat for a Sunday afternoon. I absolutely lover Miriam, the (matchmaking) ghost. She was a hoot when she was dead, I bet she was the bomb when alive.

And Ms. Curtis proved that you don't need the hero and heroine burning up the sheets (or other surfaces) in order to make a short-story interesting and readable. Bravo!

Review: Danu the Return by Sally Painter

Title:Danu the Return
Author: Sally Painter

Read copy: eBook
Published: September 21, 2009
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
ISBN: 110207134X
ISBN-13: 9781102071341

Danu has one weakness—hot, sexy dragon-hunter Ragna. As leader of the Hussy Warrior Hunters, she reaped eternity with him in the Netherworld—until now.

Destiny calls Danu back to Earth—alone. Torn between her sacred duty and her lover, Danu agonizes over losing Ragna forever. Strong, fearless Ragna makes her mindless with desire, and each time he touches her, Danu melts. Ragna is powerless to stop her from being ripped from his arms. His last words ring in her ears… He’ll find a way to return to her.

My rating:

Short and hot, but PWP-ish. Couldn't help but wonder about the back-story, if there was one. The reader is simply dropped into the action (of the horizontal variety) and that's it. Why she had to return, what happened with the bargain...? No clue.

Review: A Bride for Tom by Ruth Ann Nordin

Title: A Bride for Tom
Author: Ruth Ann Nordin

Read copy: eBook
Published: February 27, 2010
Publisher: Smashwords
ISBN-13: 2940000827185

Tom Larson is having trouble finding a wife, and Jessica Reynolds decides to help him overcome his awkward and clumsy manners so he can attract women.

My rating:

This was the first book by this author I read, and, since I have a few of them on my eReader, it won't be the last. It took a while to get used to the narrative style, and even longer to warm up to the heroine, but eventually I did, and when that happened I found myself enjoying this little story.

Initially I disliked Jessica, so worried about appearances, dismissing Tom as a "bumbling idiot", because everybody else thought so. She appeared shallow, haughty, and conceited, but eventually changed tune and became quite likable.

I didn't care for the author's portrayal of Tom at the beginning, either, since she made him appear clumsy...But once his clumsiness was explained both me and Jessica started looking at him with different eyes.

Granted, this story takes a while to "get to you", but once every above-mentioned hurdle was crossed, it turned out to be a rather good read, with some added stereotypes about matrons and their outlook on the world (that hasn't changed that much since 1868). ;)

I'm looking forward to reading the sequel, A Husband for Margaret. Margaret, Jessica's friend, deserves what's coming to her.

Review: Door Prize by Lynn LaFleur

Title:Door Prize
Author: Lynn LaFleur

Read copy: eBook
Published: May 1, 2009
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
ISBN: 1102071285
ISBN-13: 9781102071280

Cindy thinks of only one thing when she wins the door prize at a sex toys party - trying out the items she won with Colin. It would be the most erotic time in her life, but she knows her best friend’s brother sees her as only a buddy.

Colin has wanted Cindy for months, but his subtle hints haven’t worked. When he sees all the erotic toys she won, he decides it’s time for a more direct approach Cindy is only too willing to accept.

My rating:

Another sizzler of a quickie, though it was a bit "too quick" for my taste. Not exactly PWP-material, but close. Everything seemed a bit rushed, but the story still delivered. We can't expect a Pulizer-award from a Nooner, can we?

Review: Desire in the Dark by Naima Simone

Title:Desire in the Dark
Author: Naima Simone

Read copy: eBook
Published: April 12, 2010
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
ISBN-13: 9990100000500

Alise has been in love with Mac since she moved to New Eden, Washington. Unfortunately, the sexy attorney considers her a friend...and not one "with benefits". Just as Alise decides unrequited love is for fools and poets, a freak thunderstorm plummets the town into darkness and traps her with the man who has starred in her every erotic fantasy for the past year. A blackout. Wine. A gorgeous man. Anything could happen.

My rating:

Short, sweet and sizzling with just the right amount of romance, sex and plot.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Review: Changing Perspective by Marilu Mann

Title:Changing Perspective
Author: Marilu Mann

Read copy: eBook
Published: November 23, 2009
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
ISBN: 1102071668
ISBN-13: 9781102071662

Nolan wants nothing to do with Shilah. No matter how hot the other man makes him, Shilah runs with shifters responsible for the death of Nolan’s lover.

Shilah drifts through life and has drifted to New Orleans. He doesn’t do commitment, but he’d definitely like to do his new boss. After their first bout of scorching sex, Shilah’s thinking of sticking around, but he’ll have to change both his perspective and Nolan’s.

My rating:

Slightly PWP-ish and completely missing the good shifter-angle (if you discount the whole sniffing thing). Also, it felt a bit rushed and didn't deliver on the "initial suspenseful" promise. It would've made it more interesting and more "digestible". 2 ½ stars

Review: The Bad Widow by Barbara Elsborg

Title: The Bad Widow
Author: Barbara Elsborg

Read copy: eBook
Published: July 27, 2009
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
ISBN: 1102071277
ISBN-13: 9781102071273

Rose Thorne doesn’t want much. She’d like a man to love and for village idiots to stop claiming she’s a witch. Just because she does a little magic doesn’t mean they need to burn her at the stake. It takes ages to get the smell of smoke out of her hair. On her way home after foraging for mushrooms, she’s assaulted by two local lechers.

Her rescuer appears out of the mist - a tall, dark, handsome stranger with a mouth-watering body. Finally something in her miserable life is going right. Furthermore, her savior turns out to be mute, so he can’t ruin things by saying something stupid.

Can life get any better?

My rating:

A quick, hot, slightly funny, and steamy read about a witch and the mute who saves her from rape...Only to get turned into a frog after a night of steamy sex when the mob comes to get her and he tries to save her again.

Not much plot, but the scene of the trial was entertaining.

Review: Bride's Holiday Gift by Solange Ayre

Title: Bride's Holiday Gift
Author: Solange Ayre

Read copy: eBook
Published: February 2009
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
ISBN: 1102071129
ISBN-13: 9781102071129

Six months after the mass human-Terilian weddings of One Thousand Brides and Bride Reborn, Earth woman Janis Stone is consumed with lust for her alien husband Delos. A public exhibition of sex in zero gravity leaves her craving more of his exciting lovemaking. Janis’ attempted seduction of Delos during a holiday sexual “fast” makes him promise retribution. Payback comes when Janis awakens tied to the bed, about to be pleasured by Delos’ skillful fingers, tongue and cock.

After a steamy encounter, the couple exchange gifts obtained at personal sacrifice. But their greatest gift for each other is love.

My rating:

It seems this is part of a series, an epilogue of sorts for a previous story, so I was missing quite a lot, especially regarding the Terilian universe and the twist on how these pointy-eared males ended up with earthling wives, but it still was a sweet (and hot) short story.

Good to know aliens suck at "communication" as well as we do. ;) 2 ½ stars

Friday, September 24, 2010

Review: Sweet Punishment by Celia Jade

Title: Sweet Punishment
Author: Celia Jade

Read copy: eBook
Published: June 5, 2010
Publisher: Night Owl Romance

When Ella Fairburn goes sleepwalking she gets in a bit of trouble with her sexy new neighbor.

My rating:

A sleepwalker enters her neighbor's house (because he's hot and he started her sleepwalking again), he thinks she's a burglar and decides to punish her by boinking the hell out of her. The End.

Weird plot-premise lacking plot, lacking heat, lacking...Everything.

Review: Mistletoe Magic by Christine Pope

Title: Mistletoe Magic
Author: Christine Pope

Read copy: eBook
Published: December 1, 2009
Publisher: Pink Petal Books

Celia is certain she's about to experience the loneliest Christmas Eve ever. But a chance kiss from a handsome stranger leads to an evening of laughter, romance...and maybe just a little mistletoe magic.

My rating:

After a grueling day of last-minute shoppers for Christmas, Celia is really looking forward to her coffee. Her way through the rec room is deterred, though, by a collision with a handsome stranger who kisses her under the mistletoe. He's cute, he's hot...And he's the regional manager of the chain of stores she works for. Yikes.

Short, cute and sweet, just what the doctor ordered to take before bed.

Review: Sugar on Top by Leigh Ellwood

Title: Sugar on Top
Author: Leigh Elwood

Read copy: eBook
Published: 2006
Publisher: Phaze Books

What happens when a werewolf with an appetite for lust finds an undercover reporter hiding in his pantry? A feast for all senses.

My rating:

Total smut about a werewolf throwing a bachelor party for his friend and a gossip columnist that can turn invisible hiding in a hollow cake to get into his house and dig up some dirt so as no to get fired.

Before turning he gets hungry and when raiding two pantries doesn't work he goes for the cake...Only to get hungry for something a little different.

If this were longer, the rating would've been higher. As it is, it was entertaining (especially for someone with a cold and hence incapable of concentrating on anything longer or brain-cell-stimulating), despite its PWP-ish-ness.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Review: Erotique by Nicole Austin

Title: Erotique
Author: Nicole Austin

Read copy: eBook
Published: April 27, 2009
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
ISBN: 0000843512
ISBN-13: 2940000843512

What's your fantasy? Exhibitionism, voyeurism, S&M, D/s, bondage and spanking, ménages, orgies . . .

For Dani, it's being bold and brazen enough to have sex before an audience. The thrill of performing empowers her. The idea of others being titillated by witnessing her intimate gratification excites her. Mikael has given her an extravagant present, a trip to Pigalle-Paris' notorious red light district-where they will satisfy her wildest fantasy and perhaps discover a few new ones along the way.

My rating:

A short, hot little number about a woman about to live out her ultimate fantasy - sex in front of an audience.

I actually didn't miss the plot, what there was was enough for a short-story and the added bonus of her husband being present (and participating) gave this one a "good" vibe, instead of just being a story for the sex' sake.