Category: Romance

Review: Talon of the Hawk by Jeffe Kennedy

Posted May 26, 2015 by Ginny in Reviews, Romance, Science Fiction & Fantasy / 0 Comments

Review: Talon of the Hawk by Jeffe Kennedy
The Talon of the Hawk by Jeffe Kennedy
Series: The Twelve Kingdoms #3
Genres: Epic, Fantasy, Fiction, Historical
Published by Kensington Publishing Corporation on May 26th 2015
Format: eARC
Pages: 438
Source: Publisher

Reviewed by: Ginny
Also in this series: The Mark of the Tala
Purchase Links: AmazonBarnes & Noble
Book Links: Goodreads
Overall Rating:

Book Description:

Three daughters were born to High King Uorsin, in place of the son he wanted. The youngest, lovely and sweet. The middle, pretty and subtle, with an air of magic. And the eldest, the Heir. A girl grudgingly honed to leadership, not beauty, to bear the sword and honor of the king.

Ursula's loyalty is as ingrained as her straight warrior's spine. She protects the peace of the Twelve Kingdoms with sweat and blood, her sisters from threats far and near. And she protects her father to prove her worth. But she never imagined her loyalty would become an open question on palace grounds. That her father would receive her with a foreign witch at one side and a hireling captain at the other--that soldiers would look on her as a woman, not as a warrior.

She also never expected to decide the destiny of her sisters, of her people, of the Twelve Kingdoms and the Thirteenth. Not with her father still on the throne and war in the air. But the choice is before her. And the Heir must lead...


My Thoughts:

I began reading Jeffe Kennedy’s work a little over two years ago… and it’s been a really wonderful journey to take with her through her contemporary, erotic novellas into this full-fledged fantasy romance series.

When I began this series with “The Mark of the Tala” back in June of 2015, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. Sure, she’d written some fantastical shorter novels before, but this seemed different somehow. I wasn’t wrong.

Jeffe Kennedy has joined the ranks of other amazing fantasy writers in creating her own world with its own rules and creatures; it gives you a full escape from reality and you’re swiftly whisked away into the Twelve Kingdoms and the drama and magic that unfolds.

In this third, and final book of the series, you finally get to see things from Ursula’s perspective. Ursula reminds me a little of Brienne of Tarth, from “Game of Thrones”, though the cover art would suggest a slightly more feminine-looking woman. But I digress —

Ursula is the eldest child, the big sister and the heir to the High Throne, much to her father’s dismay. Her father is a man’s-man, close-minded and small. And the depths of his deception surprised even me. But Ursula has been raised to be the son her father never had — a warrior with a code of honor. She’s always been good at handling her father, and taking the barbs he throws her way with the grace that would make any lady proud — she’s a beautiful contradiction.  She’s always attempted to make her father proud until the end of book two when she finally fully defies him and goes her own way to help her sisters.

Enter in Harlan, who is taken with her immediately — a mercenary hired by her father as extra protection for himself, due to his own personal paranoia. Their love story is a beautiful one, and definitely one of the better ones I’ve read in a while. I like the symbiotic relationship they have and how he’ll allow her to be herself, but also demands that she let him see behind the mask that she shows the world. He breaks her down in the best of ways and together they triumph.

This series has left me with a serious book hangover. Do not read this as a standalone novel — buy all three and enjoy the marvelous world that Jeffe Kennedy has created for us all… afterwards, put your own review up and show some love. I am incredibly happy that I was given the chance to review this, and to come full circle after reviewing the first book. You can be damn sure that I’ll be buying the hard copies of books 2 & 3.

Review: Beneath You’re Beautiful by Tori Madison

Posted February 24, 2015 by Ginny in Contemporary Romance, Reviews, Romance / 4 Comments

Review: Beneath You’re Beautiful by Tori Madison
Beneath You're Beautiful by Tori Madison
Series: Beneath #2
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Contemporary Women, Romance
Published by Self Published on February 24, 2015
Format: eARC
Pages: 211
Source: Author

Reviewed by: Ginny
Purchase Links: AmazonBarnes & Noble
Book Links: Goodreads
Overall Rating:

Book Description:

Four words continue to haunt me . . .

You. Have. Breast. Cancer.

I associate them with the upheaval of my life to this point. The last few months have been a test of my strength . . . mentally, emotionally, and physically. Cancer is a monster. It preys on your mind and it consumes you, consistently reminding you of how your life used to be. Life before cancer. I was a successful business woman, running my own design firm, and was happily married to my college sweetheart. My life seemed perfect. Until it suddenly came crashing down all around me.

So, here I am, in the midst of treatment, incinerating the remnants of my shattered marriage and attempting to piece the rest of my life back together. With three amazing friends pushing me forward, the ‘post-chemo’ finish line is coming into view.

And then . . . there’s him. The man I never anticipated. The one who breathes hope and meaning back into my life. A man who kisses my scars and shows me that I’m beautiful. I never expected him. Hell, I never expected cancer. I’m finally ready to write my future, a future I never planned on, but one that is sure to exceed anything I ever imagined.


One of the Best Sentences Ever:
“Project Fake Nips was now commencing.”

FIRST OFF:
If you have not read book one, “Beneath It All” — STOP READING THIS AND GO READ THAT!!!

This review will contain spoilers for book one, and you desperately need to read book one first!!!

— Did you read book one? Yes? Good!  OK!!! On to the Review! —

My Thoughts:

If it were possible to give a book (or a series) more than five stars… this would be it. Similar to Spinal Tap’s amp that goes up to 11, this book would go up to a 12.

I am incredibly grateful that a friend asked me if I’d like to review this book by an author that I’ve never heard of… At first I was a bit wary as a lot of review books have been letting me down lately. I asked her if I could read book two as a standalone or if I should read book one first, and she emphatically said that I needed to read book one. So I did… in about 24 hours.

I TORE through that book, and then I devoured book two (metaphorically).

As reviewers, we’re supposed to give honest opinions and here’s mine:  I am in love with Tori Madison and all that she writes. I literally got 30% of the way through “Beneath It All” and wrote to most of the women in my family and demanded that they read it.

Book two begins with Victoria calling Dr Blake Forrester back — after he’s transferred her to another doctor and asked her out for coffee… after her marriage fell apart due to her husband Noah being a lying, cheating scumbag… I was actually writing out my thoughts as they came to the aforementioned friend and informed her,  “I want to attempt to kill Noah in a slow, mangled process that leaves him horribly disfigured, impotent and in pain for the rest of his life because as he begs for death I’ll deny it to him.”

She found this hilarious and passed it along to Ms. Madison. A good laugh was had by all…. but seriously… Have you seen or read “The Princess Bride”? In the end, when Westley claims they will fight “to the pain”? Look up that quote. That’s what Noah deserves.

These books aren’t just about triumph over a disease that is prevalent in 1-in-8 women… it’s not just about loss and pain.. it’s about sisterhood, best friends, rebirth, strength, the ability to know when you need to be left alone… and the ability to know you need to be held and not be strong for a little while… Just when Victoria thinks she’s about to be free… cancer finds its way back into her life.

This book made me cry — and that’s a very rare thing for me. I’m not a crier. This book made me literally laugh out loud. I have so many quotes highlighted it looks like a coloring book.  Her use of music in the book is perfect, and she has my undying love for including the song “Falling Slowly” — arguably one of the best and most underrated love songs ever.

This book is wise, and innocent; it’s painful and free; it’s dark and filled with light; and it’s sexy (Yeah… some pretty awesome sex)… It’s everything that an amazing, memorable book should be. Tori Madison has that skill, rarely seen these days, of using a simple turn of phrase with dialogue and making it just click with something inside of you. Victoria is speaking to her friend, Bobbie Jo, saying she knows she will feel beautiful again “… someday” and Bobbie Jo responds with, “You’re beautiful every day…” — Where one would say “you’re always beautiful”, Tori Madison switches it up just enough to have it stick with you. It is reminiscent of moments of dialogue by Nora Roberts’ — which is one of the highest compliments I can give.

I can only hope that Tori Madison writes more — I know I’ll read pretty much anything she puts out.  If my ranting and raving hasn’t driven you away yet — good. Know that you need to read these books, and share them with the special women in your lives. Be aware of your body and spend time with those you love. Don’t ever block out love. Let it come to you. And never settle for less than you deserve.

Read these books. Find her on FB or Goodreads and let her know how they’ve touched your life.

Other Fantastic Quotes:

“I’m bald, I don’t have boobs, and my skin is dry and pasty. Let’s be honest, I look like the goddamn female version of Gollum from The Lord of the Rings.”

“You know what? I’m done hearing Noah’s name. I don’t want to hear it anymore.” “You mean, fuck-nuts?” “What? Did you just call him ‘fuck-nuts’?” “I sure did. Isn’t it fitting?”

“Because let’s be honest, breakfast without bacon was a crime.”

About Tori Madison

Happily married and the mother of two, Tori Madison is active in the world of philanthropy and finds joy in making a difference in lives of others. She is an avid reader, lover of life and a breast cancer survivor. Currently residing with her family in Minnesota, she can often be found at Caribou Coffee or at the dance studio with her kids. With a well-known weakness for dark chocolate with sea salt and cheesecake, she also has a fondness for chips and fresh salsa.

Writing a book was never on her radar. After a challenge from a friend to write 1,500 words the story came to life and a new opportunity to make a difference was born.

Her debut novel, Beneath It All, released on September 24, 2014. Beneath, You're Beautiful is her second novel and the sequel to Beneath It All. It is a two book series.

“If this story can touch the life of just one woman, then I succeeded.”

Review: Dirty Deal by Christine Bell

Posted August 25, 2014 by Ginny in Contemporary Romance, Reviews, Romance / 6 Comments
Review: Dirty Deal by Christine Bell

Dirty Deal by Christine Bell Series: Perfectly Matched #2 Genres: Contemporary Romance, Romance Published by Entangled Brazen on August 25, 2014 Format: eARC Pages: 250 Source: Publisher Purchase Links: Amazon ✦ Barnes & Noble Book Links: Goodreads Overall Rating: Book Description:Book Description: A sexy category romance from Entangled publishing’s Brazen imprint… Professional matchmaker Serena Elliott spends her workdays helping clients find love. It’s the perfect gig. She gets to see the good part of the relationships…before things inevitably turn to crap. She leads her own love life the same way. Get in, and get out before things get too complicated. One date with sexy army doctor, Bryan Metcalf, won’t be enough to make her change her mind, no matter how hot it gets… Bryan has had his share of crazy women and isn’t in the market for another relationship that ends by way of restraining order. When Serena Elliott gets […]

Divider

Review: Love Bites by Ophelia London

Posted August 19, 2014 by Ginny in Contemporary Romance, Reviews, Romance / 10 Comments
Review: Love Bites by Ophelia London

Love Bites by Ophelia London Series: Sugar City #1 Genres: Chick Lit, Contemporary, Contemporary Romance Published by Entangled Bliss on August 18, 2014 Format: eARC Pages: 117 Source: Tour Host Purchase Links: Amazon ✦ Barnes & Noble Book Links: Goodreads Overall Rating: Book Description:Book Description: Falling in love is like swimming with sharks… Sharona Blaire is only in Australia for a business audit, but she’s determined to make the most of her one free night. So when she spills her drink on a handsome stranger and they end up flirting, she does something completely out of character—she kisses him. But the prospect of taking it further totally freaks her out…almost as much as discovering the next morning that the man she’s auditing is the sexy, tanned stranger she left with zero explanation. An audit during his crew’s most important expedition yet is a complication marine biologist Jeff Cruz doesn't need—especially […]

Divider

Book Spotlight: “Penumbra” by Logan Patricks

Book Spotlight: “Penumbra” by Logan Patricks

Penumbra by Logan Patricks Series: The Midnight Society #2 Genres: Erotic Romance, Fiction, Romance, Romantic Suspense, Thriller Published by Strangecrow Books on June 23, 2014 Pages: 316 Also in this series: Semblance Purchase Links: Amazon Book Links: Goodreads Book Description:Book Summary: In one night, I lost everything: my hopes and dreams, my best friend, and Shadow’s heart. He told me he loved me, but it was just a lie. The Midnight Society has fallen, reduced to ashes by a monster–a person whom we all once trusted.  The betrayal has shattered our lives forever and Shadow, Lord of the Midnight Society, finds himself at a crossroad. One road leads him further down the path of vengeance, filled with unending violence and dead bodies. The other road leads to me. However, our path to happiness is paved with broken glass and razorblades, and at some point, one of us is going to fall. Welcome to the […]

Divider

Review: Billionaire Banker by Georgia Le Carre

Posted November 28, 2013 by Sherri in Erotic Romance, Reviews, Romance / 0 Comments
Review:  Billionaire Banker by Georgia Le Carre

Billionaire Banker by Georgia Le Carre Genres: Erotic Romance, Romance Published by Self Published on October 14, 2013 Format: Ebook Pages: 277 Source: Author Purchase Links: Amazon ✦ Barnes & Noble Book Links: Goodreads Overall Rating: Book Description:Book Description: When Lana Bloom learns the devastating news that her mother is dying, she is faced with a terrible dilemma. The one thing that can save her is the one thing she does not have. For young and Innocent Lana, The unthinkable is her only choice. When she walks through the door of that exclusive restaurant she has no idea of the seismic shift her life is about to take, for the highest bidder will not be the rich man she has accompanied. Fate drops her at the feet of the deeply mysterious and dazzlingly gorgeous American banker, Blake Law Barrington. Throbbing with raw masculinity and arrogance, this is a man who […]

Divider