Thursday, October 30, 2014

Review: Gone to Her Grave by Melinda Leigh

Title: Gone to Her Grave
Series: Rogue River
Author: Melinda Leigh
Read copy: eBook (Kindle)
Published: October 21, 2014
Publisher: Montlake Romance

In Solitude, Oregon, everyone has secrets…and some will kill to keep them.

When she believes a teen is falsely accused of drug dealing, social worker Carly Taylor takes on a high-risk case and her estranged husband—the detective in charge of the investigation—to prove the boy innocent. A deadly new designer drug has taken hold of her small rural hometown of Solitude, Oregon, and Carly is determined to find the real dealer and clear the teen’s name. But the deeper she digs into the case, the more danger she unearths, until someone decides it’s time for Carly to move on…permanently.

Investigator Seth Harding knows he can’t stop his wife when she has a child to protect. But he risks any chance of reconciliation with Carly if he can’t learn to accept her dangerous job. When a drug dealer decides Carly is getting too close, will Seth lose her altogether?

My rating:

***ARC provided by publisher through NetGalley***

Not as gripping and intense than the previous installment in this 4-novella series. This one dragged in multiple places, the heroine was pretty annoying, the hero wasn't present enough for me to form an opinion about him, and the whole miscommunication between them and their "issues" grew old quickly...The main arc (the drug angle) also didn't progress much in this story, making it appear more of a filler than anything else...

Still, it didn't make me want to quit the (mini)series. I really want to know if the heart-attack of papa Taylor was just a regular heart-attack or if there was something more nefarious going on. My bet is on the nefarious-going-on thingy.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Review: Never Seduce a Sheikh by Jackie Ashenden

Title: Never Seduce a Sheikh
Author: Jackie Ashenden

Read copy: eBook
Published: October 10, 2014
Publisher: Tule Publishing
ISBN: 1940296870
ISBN-13: 9781940296876

How deep into the darkness will she have to go to help bring him into the light?

Oil baronness Lily Harkness isn't so much steel magnolia as titanium cactus. She's used to living in a man's world and when she plays, she plays to win. She wants exclusive oil rights to ensure her company remains at the top and she's not walking away empty handed.

Sheikh Isma'il al Zahara rules his country his way. Always in command, he has his own plans for his country's oil and it's not just about the money. But he's intrigued by the buttoned up business woman who's come to his country to strike a deal. He can't help but wonder what's beneath her icy facade.

Lily's desires are buried down deep, but her attraction to Isma'il is too strong to deny. Will seducing the sheikh cost Lily her body and her soul?

My rating:

***ARC provided by publisher through NetGalley***

For some reason, I just didn't want to read this one. Sure, it was free and all, but something was telling me not to read it. But since the file on my eReader was about to expire, I decided to go for it.
And I discovered the reason I didn't want to read it in the first place. My gut was telling me not to. And my gut is never wrong.

After just a few digital pages, I simply didn't care. I didn't care about the heroine, I didn't care about the hero, I didn't care about their issues (they both had those), and I didn't care what happened.

I skimmed through most of it, hoping against hope the ending would inspire me to read it again, truly read it. And after the ending...I still didn't care.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Review: On Her Father's Grave by Kendra Elliot

Title: On Her Father's Grave
Series: Rogue River
Author: Kendra Elliot
Read copy: eBook (Kindle)
Published: October 7, 2014
Publisher: Montlake Romance

In a small town like Solitude, Oregon, keeping a secret can be murder.

Stevie Taylor had left her sleepy Oregon hometown for a more exciting life. But after her police chief father passes away, the LAPD cop returns to Solitude and signs on as a patrol officer, hoping to heal from her loss…and from the horrific things she’s seen in the city.

In Solitude, everyone knows everyone else’s business—and, to Stevie’s dismay, local gossip soon ties her to the new police chief and a man from her past. Tragedy then shakes up the small town when a teenager dies after taking a strange new drug. Now, the seasoned LA cop must hunt down the dealer while investigating the most important case of her life, one that could divide her tranquil town.

My rating:

***ARC provided by publisher through NetGalley***

Short and intense, just how I like a suspense story from an unknown author.

A great introduction into the world of the little town of Solitude where everybody knows everybody, and where an "expatriate" returns home after her father's death. I have a suspicion about that particular death, but I'll let myself be surprised. ;)

Wonderful cast of characters, good characterization, natural narrative flow, lovely author's voice. Nice balance of suspense and romance, the scale tipping more toward suspense offers a nice twist on the genre and a good incentive to keep reading the next novellas.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Review: Heat of the Moment by Robin Kaye

Title: Heat of the Moment
Author: Robin Kaye

Read copy: eBook
Published: October 21, 2014
Publisher: InterMix
ISBN: 0698182871
ISBN-13: 9780698182875

Cameron O’Leary, a 4th generation firefighter turned arson investigator, thinks he’s the luckiest man in the world—after a year of sickness in the family, everyone’s finally on the mend, and his life can go back to its even keel. But even though Cameron has moved to Boston to be there for his family, some sort of live-in nurse is still necessary, given the demands of his job.

Erin Crosby is financing her master’s thesis in social work by acting as a home health care nurse. Working for Cameron seems like the perfect gig—low key, plenty of time to work on her thesis, and the patient is lovely. She might never have lived with a man before—she’s never found anyone she cared about that much, had barely even considered it—but Cameron is easy to live with, and an easy friendship blooms between them.

But it gets harder and harder for Cameron to keep his hands off of his charming employee—and for Erin to remember that she hasn’t really moved into Cameron’s life.

My rating:

***ARC provided by publisher through NetGalley***

I have mixed feelings about this one, hence the middle-ground rating. It started great, a little Harlequin-y, but it didn't deter from my enjoyment of the story, it had two great protagonists and a wonderful little girl to bring them together...The tension was palpable, although I cringed a little at the insta-lust thing Cam and Erin had going...

Then came the one-night-of-passion scene, and the story fizzled for me. I never thought I'd say this, but the sex ruined this one. It somehow didn't "mesh" with the rest of the story, and although it was used as a catalyst for the rush toward the finish line and the ending, that one scene stood out like a sore thumb from an otherwise good story.
It simply didn't gel.

And the whole requisite misunderstanding that spawned out of that single scene didn't help things much. I hate it when authors use the misunderstanding and inability-to-communicate-to-each-other card in stories. It cheapens the whole thing, and just makes me roll my eyes.

And then everything was suddenly resolved between h/H, and all was well in Romancelandia. I don't know, the whole ending was tied up with a too neat and nice a bow. It seemed rushed to me, like there was a few scenes or pages missing, making the whole story appear a bit wonky and "lopsided".

It was cute (in places), and the shortness was a bonus, but there was just something missing.