Share the Love: Or should I say where is the love?

Wednesday, March 31



Today's Share the Love post is going to be just a little bit different.  I want to talk about  what I feel is lacking in some romance novels...not all, but enough that I've been repeatedly disappointed.   Where is the "love" in romance?

For those of you who have been avid readers of my reviews you probably think I sound like a broken record sometimes when I keep saying I want to read more of the reasons why a hero and heroine fell in love...not just lust.  Give me moments when the characters confide in each other, show each other their love, or even illustrate to the reader reasons why they are falling in love, and I am a very happy booklover.  While I do feature a lot of hot and steamy romances on this blog, I also enjoy the sweeter ones that are less explicit as well...so I'm not just talking about sex scenes.  I'm talking about moments in the book that are sigh-worthy because you can "feel" why they would be in love with the other person(s)...in or outside of the boudoir so to speak.

A few weeks ago I had been reading Love Letters of Great Men by John Kirkland and ran across this letter from Leo Tolstoy to Valeria Arsenew which encompassed so eloquently what I felt had been lacking in some of my romance reads:

Nov 2, 1856
Saint Petersburg

I already love in you your beauty, but I am only beginning to love in you that which is eternal and ever precious--your heart, your soul.

Beauty one could get to know and fall in love with in one hour and cease to love it as speedily;  but the soul one must learn to know.

Believe me, nothing on earth is given without labour, even love, the most beautiful and natural of feelings.

The line that stood out the most to me was "...but the soul one must learn to know".  I think that is so so very true. I want to "know" what's in the hero and heroine's heart and soul, and to deprive us of these insights and the reasons why they love is tragic and as close as a crime against romance as you can get in my opinion.  Yes, I know I am greedy..I want it all!  I want the hot lovin', the heart, the special moments, the sighs, the tears, the angst, the anger, the fears, misunderstandings...oh and some laughter every now and then would also be nice.  Maybe not all of these things in every book, because obviously they don't work for all love stories, but this is my plea to authors....give us the passion, the heart, AND the soul.  Give us a relationship that is based on more than just great sex, or other  writer methods such as action, suspense, or villains that drive the plot of the story.  I want Sex, Sighs & Souls.  I'm sending out my own SSS SOS to authors, editors, and publishers.  I'm begggging you!  I will be your booklover slave if you do.

I had been thinking about this post for a while, and in fact had planned to do it a few weeks ago until I realized that it was St. Patrick's Day so I postponed it.  Then last week I read a post by Stacy from Stacy's Place on Earth and thought that it really captured what I had been feeling too.  I wasn't the only one.  Thank you Stacy!  Thank you Leo!  Both of you are my Share the Love heroes this week.

What are your thoughts on this? Am I way off base here?  Is it just the books I've been reading? (even though most are by NYT bestselling authors)


Share the Love is a weekly meme hosted by Seductive Musings every Wednesday. 
  • Every Wednesday post whatever it is that you love on your blog or website.
  • Then leave a link to your post in the comments on the weekly Share the Love post at Seductive Musings. If you don't have a blog, that's ok you can still share the love in your comment on the weekly Seductive Musings post.
  • What can you share...well that depends on what you love :) Here are some ideas: a new blog or website, a great recipe that is a taste bud triumph, new shoes or purse that you seriously can't afford but lust after anyway, a great love story like the ones from When Harry Met Sally, a love note to someone special in your life (or wish was), a book you just adore and can't wait to share with someone, a song or CD that plays on repeat until it's worn out, poems, pictures, videos, or even baby giggles :) I think you get the idea.


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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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DIK Reading Challenge Review: Lessons in Seduction by Melissa Schroeder

Tuesday, March 30


Author:  Melissa Schroeder
Series: Book #2 in the Once Upon an Accident series (The Accidental Countess, and The Spy Who Loved Her)
Genre:  Historical romance
Publisher:  Samhain
Format: Print and e-book
Date/Year:  August 2007

This novel is from my own personal collection of romance books (aka the massive TBR)

Summary from the publisher: 

What is a lady to do when her chosen rake changes her lessons in seduction to lessons of love? 

Book two in the Once Upon an Accident series 

Cicely Ware understands how society works. At the age of twenty-six, she has been around long enough to know that she is doomed to spinsterhood. But she refuses to go without ever knowing what it is like to be with a man. So she comes up with a wonderful plan to find a rake to teach her, complete with a list of possibilities. At the top of that list sits Douglas the Duke of Ethingham.

When he asks Lady Cicely to waltz, Douglas never expected her to request seduction, or that it would intrigue him quite as much. With each glance, each smile, each touch, he finds himself falling under her spell, unable to resist her lure. In her he finds a soul mate, someone as lonely as he is, who understands his pain, and will give herself to him without demands or expectations.

But as he finds himself falling in love, he also discovers a wicked plot to kill Lady Cicely. As they race to discover who wants her dead, they fall deeper in love, leaving them to decide if the lessons in seduction could lead to a lifetime of happiness.

Warning, this title contains the following: Explicit love scenes, propositions made on dance floors, mistaken identity of a kissing partner and many scenes of seduction.

My Musings:

I’m just going to come right out and say it…I was disappointed.  More I think from my own built up expectations of what this book would be about than anything drastically wrong with what the author wrote.  I expected Lessons in Seduction to be…well, mostly about lessons in seduction.  

I adored Lady Cicely and thought her approach to experiencing desire fit her personality despite taking place in the stringent rules of the Regency period.  She views herself as a plain spinster, and has issues with her looks and her body, all created and reinforced by her unloving and demented mother.  She has resigned herself to living a single status despite her generous dowry due to scandals in her family. So, the oh so proper and bookish Lady Cicely approaches the Duke of Ethingham because he is the man she has secretly been in love with and is her first choice in a list of potential lovers.  He does not respond well to her request, and denies her despite not wanting another to be the first to experience her passion.

Douglas, the Duke of Ethingham considers Lady Cicely a family friend, and until her makeover /transformation doesn’t even consider her for her looks…as if she were a backdrop in his life;  always there, but disregarded.  A convenience when avoiding matchmaking mothers and their eligible daughters.  He has secretly vowed never to marry because of the bad genes inherently passed down to each generation; cruelty and vice cultivated from father to son...from Duke to Duke.  Consequently, he is passably happy with his bachelor existence.

All of these things are what I loved about the story.  Unfortunately the plot also involved a dangerously hidden secret society that had planned to over throw the monarchy in England much like what had happened in France.  Lady Cicely finds an old diary that divulges thoughts, plans, ideas, and actions taken by this society and finds herself and the book hunted and in perilous danger. 

I felt that this addition to the story was completely unnecessary, and while adequately written, was a disappointing distraction to what I felt was the better story;  Cicely and Douglas overcoming their beliefs and finding love.  The reader is told that Cicely is in love with her Duke without much to base it upon, and Douglas’s love seems to be solely based on her attractiveness after her transformation.  I never felt that the “lessons in seduction” changed into “lessons in love” which is why for me this book was a lesson in dissatisfaction.

There was so much potential in this story because of each of their pasts, and even thinking back on the novel after some time has passed I’m just as disappointed.  Part of that could be because of the enticing blurb and Samhain “Warning” (I happen to love those) that I based my expectations on, and that it had been sitting in my TBR for a very long time despite my desire to read this book… probably even building it up in my mind to be more than what it could ever possibly live up to.  In that respect I have to take part of the responsibility for my disillusionment, but I also strongly believe that Lessons in Seduction would have been a much better story if it would have been solely about Cicely and Douglas and ditched the whole plot of the diary and the danger surrounding it.  Please don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t a poorly written story.  And even as it is written, it isn’t really much different than most Regency historical romances except for its shorter length…and maybe that’s the problem.  Maybe the story was trying to be too much for the length of the book (even though Samhain classifies it as a novel) and as a result the romance (not the love scenes but the interaction between the H/h) and reasons for love were sacrificed.  

This is the first book I’ve read by Melissa Schroeder, but despite my beleaguered disappointments in Lessons in Seduction I still plan on reading the rest of the books in the “Once Upon an Accident” series, as well as several of her contemporary books from her “Harmless” series.

Ratings: 3.25 stars

Sensuality:  I would consider this book to be like most historical romances in the Regency period.  On a heat level somewhat like Sabrina Jeffries, but not as hot as Elizabeth Hoyt.


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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Teaser Tuesday: Sweet Temptation

 
" He loved and cherished women, and yet he treated Angelina with contempt almost.  All because she claimed to care about him."  p. 182 Sweet Temptation by Maya Banks






As always you can click on any cover to learn more and/or buy the books featured on this blog.


*Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read. Open to a random page. Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Review: SEALed with a Ring by Mary Margret Daughtridge

Monday, March 29

Title:  SEALed with a Ring*

Author:  Mary Margret Daughtridge
Series:  SEALed series 
Genre:  Romance
Publisher:  Casablanca Sourcebooks
Format:  mass market paperback
Date/Year: March 2010

*This book was provided to me by the publisher for review

Summary from the publisher:

She’s got it all…except the one thing she needs most 

Smart, successful businesswoman JJ Caruthers has a year to land a husband or lose the empire she’s worked so hard to build. With time running out, romance is not an option, and a military husband who is always on the road begins to look like the perfect solution… 

He’s a wounded hero with an agenda of his own 

Even with the scars of battle, Navy SEAL medic Davy Graziano is gorgeous enough to land any woman he wants, and he’s never wanted to be tied down. Now Davy has ulterior motives for accepting JJ’s outrageous proposal of marriage, but he only has so long to figure out what JJ doesn’t want him to know…


My Musings:

JJ and Davy first meet at a wedding where they let their inhibitions go and spend a wild night of sexual indulgence together… not so new to Davy, but very uncharacteristic for JJ.  Then both go their separate ways...JJ to find a way to keep the car dealership that she feels is her family legacy, and has become the sole focus of her life, and Davy back to Afghanistan to serve his country as a SEAL.

They meet again almost a year later at another wedding, but Davy doesn’t remember JJ.  He is drawn to her inexplicably, and feels moments of déjà vu that he just can’t explain, while JJ desperately wishes to forget a night that she regrets.  In a moment of brilliance JJ realizes that Davy, now David, is exactly the type of husband that she needs and has been searching for.   A SEAL is perfect since he will almost never be around and she will be free to lead her life as she sees fit…on her own terms.  However, David has terms of his own.  One of which is a “real” marriage, not just in name only.

There was so much promise in JJ and David’s love story.  I loved the hero David, and his transformation into a man that is drastically different from his prior playboy personality, while trying to overcome traumatic brain injuries that could end his career as a SEAL.  For me he was the heart and the most interesting part of the story.  However, much to my disappointment I felt that this story was heroine centric and focused mostly on JJ and her struggles to control everything in her life.

I was slow to get invested into this story for this reason.  I wish the story would have been more about David and how he changed after his injuries; his efforts to regain some of his memories, having to relearn things like reading and math while hiding his struggles from everyone including his new wife, and doctors because of his fear of no longer being a SEAL…the very reason why she wanted to marry him.  He viewed his entire worth and identity with being a SEAL and this was such a significant point in the book that I wish it would have been explored in more depth.

His injuries were the reason why he didn’t remember JJ.  He just had inexplicable feelings that he already “knew” her and that she was important enough to him that he didn’t want to let her go.  It made JJ’s struggle with controlling the world around her seem insignificant compared to what David was experiencing, yet it was JJ’s story that was the focus of the book.  I felt that JJ”s same problems were rehashed repeatedly,  I just wish she would have learned her hard earned lessons much sooner so that we could experience more of David’s story.  I wanted to learn more about his relationship with his family.  More about him, how he coped with his fears, and desired the love of a woman he felt unworthy of.

I felt that the emotions were stunted and just when I thought that the hero and the heroine would get to important discussions/discoveries the scene or chapter would end, and while some of this was finally addressed, it happened all within about the last 50 or so pages…too little to late for me.  It was almost as if the story needed to conclude, and the parts of the story that for me were the most important, that were crucial to their love story, their growth and development individually as well as a couple, were sadly rushed.  SEALed with a Ring held promise that I felt wasn’t completely fulfilled despite it's potential.

Ratings: 3.25 stars

Sensuality level:  the intimate scenes in this book were mostly just hinted at, however there were a few scenes that went into more detail...much like you would find in a Harlequin romance


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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Monday's Muse

Sorry, but the image containing the Monday's Muse has been removed from this blog so as not to violate any copyright issues.  Thanks for your understanding!

Please don't interrupt me for a moment...or two.  I'm just a little bit preoccupied with our Muse this week.... 

He was inspired from the book I am currently reading, Sweet Temptation by Maya Banks.  The story features Micah as the hero (for those of you who have been craving his story like me) and all I can say is HOLY COW!  He's a ex police officer into sharing and BDSM, so I thought this weeks Muse was absolutely perfect considering the necklace of handcuffs he is wearing, not to mention I think our hero Micah is going to have to take a lot of cold showers before he gives in to his seductive and sultry Angelina!  I'm only about 50 pages into the book if that tells you anything :)

In addition, this week Jennifer Haymore will be my guest to celebrate her new historical romance A Touch of Scandal.  It was one of my most anticipated historical romance reads this year and she will be here at Seductive Musings to give away one of my fav historical romances of last year A Hint of Wicked, as well as copies of A Touch of Scandal .  

I will also have the reviews for the DIK Reading Challenge (Lessons in Seduction by Melissa Schroeder), and for the Erotic Romance Reading Challenge (Secrets of Sin by Chloe Harris).

Thanks for joining me & I hope you have a great Monday!



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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Hidden Gems: He Loves Lucy by Susan Donovan

Friday, March 26


Do you have a handful of books that you turn to when you need a pick me up?  You know...the ones guaranteed to bring a smile to your face...romances that you love because they make you sigh, and happy all at the same time.  I love emotional reads, and not just the ones that make you cry, but also ones that make me smile and laugh while reading them.  For some reason during the winter months I enjoy the more emotional and tortured hero reads, but as spring approaches I always tend to search out lighter romances...ones with some humor.

For some reason, my favs that make me laugh while falling in love with the book almost always tend to be contemporary romances.  It's one of the reasons why I love the genre despite it's not being as popular as historical or paranormal romances.  I was debating over two different books for this month, and then decided on my pick after reading about Julie James's campaign to save the contemporary romance.  Julie James is on my list of authors to try this year, and reading about her campaign for her new book Something About You reminded me of one of my favorite reads.

My Hidden Gems of Romance pick for March is He Loves Lucy by Susan Donovan.  He loves Lucy is a different kind of romance for me because usually I tend to like my romances to be all about the hero.  Don't get me wrong I have to like the heroine too, but usually the hero is what makes or breaks the book for me.  However, in this book it's more about the heroine Lucy....and let me tell you she is charming, and funny, and witty.  In fact if she were a real person, she would be someone I could see myself being friends with. 

Lucy Cunningham is on a quest to lose a hundred pounds as part of a publicity stunt, and Theo Redmond aka "God of Fitness" is the man that is going to transform her.  Think Biggest Loser, but on a more personal level. Add a great romance into the mix and you have He Loves Lucy.  It's funny, and endearing, and touching, and it's one of my favorite comfort reads.  I don't think I will ever get rid of it and is one of the few books that I have read more than once.  Read the excerpt and I think you will get a good idea what this book is like.  It's one of my favorites (as I've already said a few times), and if you haven't had the pleasure of reading it I hope you will give it a try.  I don't think you will be disappointed.


Lucy Cunningham is a smart-mouthed couch potato hooked on Milk Duds. Theo Redmond is a hottie personal trainer to the stars. When they team up for a makeover publicity stunt that could make them both rich, they learn that nobody's perfect, beauty is more than skin deep, and true loves lies somewhere between pizza and Pilates.












What's your Hidden Gem of Romance pick for March?


Hidden Gems meme is hosted by Seductive Musings on the last Friday of every month (barring any special events). Anyone passionate about romance novels can participate. Just do the following:
  • Share a hidden gem that you've read and feel has been overlooked, or deserves to be brought to the attention of romance readers (please don't include books currently on blog tours). 
  • The book can be a new release, a current release, or an older novel. As long as it is in print, it is available for purchase, and is classified as a romance then it qualifies (historical romance, contemporary romance, paranormal romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance...). 
  • Reveal your hidden gem on the last Friday of the month on your blog using the Hidden Gem icon and following the participation rules. Tell us why you feel so passionately about this novel, then link your gem back to the current Seductive Musings Hidden Gem post. You can include excerpt links, teasers, back cover blurbs, book trailers, interviews, giveaways...whatever you like. 
  • The following Monday I will compile a list of the Hidden Gems posted and I'll have a poll where you can vote for your favorite hidden gems. At the end of the year I will compile the top hidden gem for each month and you can vote for the top 5 Hidden Gems of the year. Once the brightest gems are revealed I will invite the authors to guest at Seductive Musings to talk about their books, and upcoming releases.

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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Seductive Museum: My favorite cover of March 2010

Thursday, March 25


My Seductive Museum Cover Art pick for the month of March is....Coming Undone by Lauren Dane.



 Coming Undone was one of my most anticipated books for 2010.  I was enamored with the hero Brody in Laid Bare and could not wait to read his story.  While Coming Undone was not as emotionally intense as Laid Bare, it did not disappoint.

Brody is a tattoo artist which is why body art has been featured so prominently in all of the book covers in this series.  Elise, the heroine, is a woman who has survived an abusive and deadly relationship with her ex husband, and is learning to recreate herself and her life with her daughter.  

Brody has been responsible for so much in his life that she hates to add to his burden despite his willingness to include Elise and her daughter in his life.  I think this cover perfectly represents this story.  Brody appears as the rock solid anchor, ready to embrace her, but Elise must come to him and show her willingness to rely on him, to trust him.  Towards the end of their love story she chooses to have a tattoo of a phoenix tattooed on her body to memorialize the person she has becomes;  a symbol of her strength and triumph over adversity...someone who accepts her past, mistakes and all.

Yes, the cover is striking and would beckon you from across a room, but it also tells a little bit about the story behind the image, which is why it was my favorite cover this month.  And if your curious, it's a read that is definitely worth your time and money :)

What's your Cover Art pick this month?



Seductive Museum-Gallery of Fine Cover Art monthly meme is hosted by Seductive Museums the last Thursday of every month. Want to participate? Here's how:
  • Share your favorite romance novel cover from any of the romance novels you’ve read this month, and remember this has nothing to do with the actual content of the book…just the cover.
  • The romance novel can be a new release, a current release, or an older book. As long as it is in print, it is available for purchase (no preorders), and is classified as a romance then it qualifies (historical romance, contemporary romance, paranormal romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance...).
  • Present your book cover art on the last Thursday of the month (barring any special events) on your blog using the Seductive Museums icon and following these participation rules. Tell us what you love about the cover, and then link your choice to the current Seductive Museum Gallery.
  • The following week I will compile a list of the submitted book covers and I'll have a poll where you can vote for your favorites. At the end of the year I will list the top book covers for each month and you can vote for the top 5 covers of the year. Once the masterpiece of the year has been chosen we will honor the author and the cover artist with an award.


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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Monday's Muse

Monday, March 22

Sorry, but the image containing the Monday's Muse has been removed from this blog so as not to violate any copyright issues.  Thanks for your understanding!

It's the start to another new week...sigh.  My weekend was pretty much non existent.  On Sunday night I was wondering where the time went.  I'm so not ready to start another new week, so I thought it was time to break out another Muse from my Gods of Football collection.  You know, to make me feel better about Monday :)

The Gods Muse's were popular at the end of last year, and I can completely understand why you were smitten with them...because I was too!  After picking our Muse I wondered to myself....is he a "charmer", or the "bad boy"?  I can't decide.  What do you think?

Happy Monday!



Booklover signature (revised)

*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

Read more...

Review: Broken by Shiloh Walker

Friday, March 19

Title:  Broken 

Author:  Shiloh Walker
Series: loosely connected to Fragile 
Genre:  Romantic Suspense
Publisher:  Berkley Sensation
Format:  Trade size paperback
Date/Year:  March 2010

This book was provided to me by the author for participating in a giveaway.

Summary from the publisher: 

The national bestselling author of Fragile returns with a luscious new blend of sex and suspense.
 
Quinn Rafferty is working as a bounty hunter for a private detective agency in St. Louis when a new neighbor catches his eye. He’s drawn to her—but he has his own soul to mend before he can worry about anyone else.

Sarah McElyea is on the run, but not for the usual reasons a woman goes on the lam. She has a plan for her future. And as much as she finds herself attracted to her gruff, tough neighbor, she can’t risk telling him the secrets she’s hiding.

But Quinn must get closer to Sarah when she turns out to be the target of his new missing persons case, and both Quinn and Sarah will have to expose their true feelings—as well as their fragile hearts—if their love is to survive.
My Musings:

I have nothing but praise for Broken by Shiloh Walker.  I loved everything about Quinn and Sarah’s love story.  I thought it was a “true” romantic suspense; while the danger Sarah finds herself embroiled in brought her to a place where she meets Quinn, it's not the catalyst to their developing relationship.

The suspense in this novel is that you don’t understand the motives or the truths of the story until the end.  The author cleverly uses flashbacks of the same or similar scenes throughout the book…slowly revealing shrouded secrets to the reader each time with additional details and insights to unravel the mystery surrounding Sarah.

Sarah and Quinn are attracted to each other instantly, but both try to convince themselves that to act on it would be unwise because neither feels that they are free to form an attachment, let alone fall in love.  And Quinn…sigh, I love Quinn as a hero.  He is such a wounded soul.  He is a man who has overcome amazing odds to become who he is.  He doesn’t trust or love easily, yet with Sarah he finds that he is willing to reach for a chance at love.  When he believes that she has betrayed him and his love, he tries to turn his back on her and leave her to her fate. He tries. Sarah is the mysterious soul in this love story, but Quinn is its heart.

Broken isn’t a romantic suspense where the hero and the heroine are thrown together, then expected to fall in love while dodging bullets and saving the world.  It’s a love story about two people who are broken, but heal themselves and each other with their love.  Broken is passionate, and emotional, and intriguing, and so very far from being broken….in fact I thought it was just about perfection.  I read all but 70 pages in one day because it was so hard to put down....one of the best books I’ve read this year.

p.s. Broken is loosely connected to Fragile, also by Shiloh Walker.  I didn’t think it was necessary to read Fragile in order to enjoy Broken.  That being said if you haven’t read Fragile yet, you most certainly will after finishing Broken so do yourself a favor and pick up both and read them back to back :)

Ratings: 4.75 stars (a very very seductively steamy read!)
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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

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Share the Love: Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Wednesday, March 17


Happy St. Patrick's Day!  I was watching the news this morning and they had a story about what accent women find the most sexy.  I have to admit I LOVE accents.  I even love reading them as they are written in a story.  It's just as sexy to me to read an accent as to hear it...am I the only one?

Anyways, the news story said that a poll was recently conducted surveying 5000 women from around the world and asked them to rank what they thought were the sexiest accents.  Curious to know the results?  Here are the top ten sexiest accents according to onepoll.com:

   1. Irish
   2. Italian
   3. Scottish
   4. French
   5. Australian
   6. English
   7. Swedish
   8. Spanish
   9. Welsh
  10. American

I would have to agree with most of those listed.  Last month I read a contemporary romance titled ALWAYS by Lauren Dane, which I absolutely loved.  The hero was Irish and his accent was included just a little bit in the story.  Here's the Samhain warning for the book: "Like-whoa sexy Irishmen speaking French in the ear of a very willing Seattleite. Sexin with all the big words".  Two accents in one hero...no wonder I loved him so much :)

That the hero was Irish was one of my many favorite parts of the book.  So, if the Irish accent is considered the sexiest, and Irish men are undoubtedly sexy...hello, Liam Neeson (whom I love!), why aren't there more Irish heroes in romance?  I find it hard to believe that I am the only one...am I the only one?  So here are my questions to you:  
  • When you read an accent in a novel do you read it as you would hear it as if the person where standing there?
  • What's your favorite accent?
  • Do you have a favorite Irish actor?
  • Do you know of any other great romance reads that feature Irish heroes that I might have missed out on?
  • Would you like to see more Irish heroes in romance, and if so in what genre? (historical, contemporary, paranormal...)

And since today is Share the Love day, I have a parting gift for you in the form of the sinfully seductive Irish actor, Jonathan Rhys Meyers.  Enjoy!


Share the Love is a weekly meme hosted by Seductive Musings every Wednesday. 
  • Every Wednesday post whatever it is that you love on your blog or website.
  • Then leave a link to your post in the comments on the weekly Share the Love post at Seductive Musings. If you don't have a blog, that's ok you can still share the love in your comment on the weekly Seductive Musings post.
  • What can you share...well that depends on what you love :) Here are some ideas: a new blog or website, a great recipe that is a taste bud triumph, new shoes or purse that you seriously can't afford but lust after anyway, a great love story like the ones from When Harry Met Sally, a love note to someone special in your life (or wish was), a book you just adore and can't wait to share with someone, a song or CD that plays on repeat until it's worn out, poems, pictures, videos, or even baby giggles :) I think you get the idea.

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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

Read more...
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My FREE Kindle Quest

I've wanted a Kindle for what seems like forever, but haven't been able to afford it (and that's saying something since I can justify the cost of just about ANYTHING that I really want). I've tried winning one in one of the many giveaways that have taken place over the couple of years, but with no luck :( So I've decided to take matters in hand so to speak :) I've now decided that I am going to accumulate enough Swagbucks from my Swabucks searches to buy one...so in essence my new Kindle will be FREE...funded entirely by my internet searches done on Swagbucks. I'll keep you informed of the Great Kindle Quest below (in case you're interested....if not feel free to just skip over this part, but really who wouldn't be interested in a FREE Kindle?)
Goal: $119
Current Swagbucks Amazon Gift Card balance: $90.00
If you'd like to learn how you can earn Swagbucks and earn your own Amazon Gift Cards to buy books, a Kindle or other merchandise sold at Amazon contact me and I would be more than happy to tell you how I plan to go about it. (just so you know you can earn both Amazon.com and Amazon.ca gift cards on this rewards site)
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