ADAM by Chris Keniston

February 15, 2020

ADAM by Chris Keniston. Indie House Publishing (October 13, 2016). ISBN 978-1942561095. 162p.

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THE WORST BEST MAN by Mia Sosa

February 14, 2020

THE WORST BEST MAN by Mia Sosa. Avon (February 4, 2020). ISBN 978-0062909879. 368p.

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KEEP ME WANTING by Angela Addams

February 13, 2020

WINNING THE BOSS’S HEART by Hayson Manning

February 12, 2020

WINNING THE BOSS’S HEART by Hayson Manning. Entangled: Indulgence (September 9, 2013). ASIN B00EBRKWEC. 220p.

Paperback


THE KISS LIST by Sonya Weiss

February 10, 2020

THE KISS LIST by Sonya Weiss. Independently published (January 20, 2020). ISBN 979-8601908962. 220p.

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LOVE HER OR LOSE HER by Tessa Bailey

February 8, 2020

LOVE HER OR LOSE HER by Tessa Bailey. Avon (January 14, 2020). ISBN 978-0062872852. 352p.

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PROJECT DUCHESS by Sabrina Jeffries

February 6, 2020

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Duke Dynasty, Book 1

From the publisher:

From New York Times bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries comes a sparkling new series about an oft-widowed mother’s grown children, who blaze through society in their quest for the truth about their fathers . . . and in the process find that love just might conquer all . . .

A series of stepfathers and a difficult childhood have left Fletcher “Grey” Pryde, 5th Duke of Greycourt, with a guarded heart, enviable wealth, and the undeserved reputation of a rogue. Grey’s focus on expanding his dukedom allows him little time to find a wife. But when his mother is widowed yet again and he meets the charmingly unconventional woman managing his stepfather’s funeral, he’s shocked to discover how much they have in common. Still, Grey isn’t interested in love, no matter how pretty, or delightfully outspoken, the lady . . .

Beatrice Wolfe gave up on romance long ago, and the arrogant Duke of Greycourt with his rakish reputation isn’t exactly changing her mind. Then Grey agrees to assist his grief-stricken mother with her latest “project”: schooling spirited, unfashionable Beatrice for her debut. Now that Beatrice is seeing through Grey’s charms to his wounded heart, she’s having trouble keeping him at arm’s length. But once Grey starts digging into her family’s secrets, she must decide whether her loyalties lie with her family . . . or with the man whose lessons capture her heart . . .


Sabrina Jeffries writes a good, steamy romance so I was very happy to see she is starting a new series. Because it is the first book in the series, there are a lot of characters, but she does a good job of introducing them without overwhelming. Grey is our hero, and he is a man with a difficult past. Even dukes can have baggage, (apparently to this day!) and his troubled childhood has left him wary of letting anyone in. But when he meets Beatrice, her refreshing way of speaking her mind disarms him.

Beatrice has been living out in the country in pretty much isolation, other than her extended family and the help. She and Grey have much in common, they both lost family members, and both have little use for pretense. But Grey’s mother, the thrice widowed dowager duchess, is determined to have Beatrice come out along with her daughter, Grey’s sister. To that end, while they are in mourning, they take the opportunity to teach the girls the graces, and subterfuge, that is necessary to succeed in London’s high society.

Grey is determined to never lose his heart and plans on marrying eventually, but in the way of much of the ton, purely for business reasons, for lack of a better term. But he is enraptured with Beatrice, fight it as he may. Not to mention Grey’s half-brother suspects Beatrice’s brother of killing two of their mother’s husbands. Yes, it is a bit complicated but that’s half the fun. A bit of mystery, some steamy sex, lots of secrets, and a big family all combine to create a terrific start to this new series. If you enjoy your romances historical, quick, fun, and sexy, then read this book. I’m very glad I did.

2/2020 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

PROJECT DUCHESS by Sabrina Jeffries. Zebra (June 25, 2019).  ISBN 978-1420148558. 400p.

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HUNTING FOR A HIGHLANDER by Lynsay Sands

February 4, 2020

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Highland Brides, Book 8

From the publisher:

Four Buchanan brothers have found their brides…only three more to go in this scintillating romance from New York Times bestselling author Lynsay Sands…

Lady Dwyn Innes feels utterly out of place among the eligible women who’ve descended on Buchanan Keep, vying for the attention of the last unmarried brothers. She isn’t long-legged and slender like her sisters, or flirtatious and wily like other lasses. Since her betrothed died, Dwyn has resigned herself to becoming an old maid. Yet a chance encounter with a stranger in the orchard awakens her to a new world of sensation and possibility…

After weeks away, Geordie Buchanan returns to find his home swarming with potential brides, thanks to his loving but interfering family. But one lass in particular draws his attention from the moment he spies her climbing a tree. Lady Dwyn is not nearly as plain as she thinks. Her lush figure and eager kisses delight him, as does her honesty. But the real test lies ahead: eliminating a hidden enemy, so that he and Dwyn can seal their Highland passion with a vow.


This series started out hit or miss with me, but two in a row have been really fun reads so I’m on board. This book has a lot of humor, mostly centering around the heroine’s large boobs, the low cut gowns her sisters are forcing her to wear, and said boobs’ propensity to pop out on a fairly regular basis. Despite her forced lack of decorum, or maybe because of it, I really liked Lady Dwynn. She is honest and kind and empathetic, and Geordie always really likes her. Unfortunately, he had told his older brother that he has no intention of marrying, which Dwynn overheard, but things have a way of changing.

This is a steamy love story, and as in all the books in this series (at least the ones I’ve read), there is also a bit of suspense. The women who are vying to be brides for the single men also have other demands that must be met, chief of which is making the husband heir to whatever lands they own. The problem for Dwynn is that they have a mentally ill neighbor who has a vendetta against her, but also wants the land. The book takes a dark turn towards the end but of course, there is the guarantee of a happy ending. Thank goodness. I need my happy endings!

This was a really fun and sexy read and I couldn’t put it down. Looking forward to the next book in the series.

2/2020 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

HUNTING FOR A HIGHLANDER by Lynsay Sands. Avon (January 28, 2020).  ISBN 978-0062855374. 384p.

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YOU WERE THERE TOO by Colleen Oakley

February 2, 2020

YOU WERE THERE TOO by Colleen Oakley. Berkley (January 7, 2020). ISBN 978-1984806468. 352p.

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EXCLUSIVE/A TOUCH OF HEAVEN by Samantha Chase

January 30, 2020

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From the publisher:

Exclusive

When little-known writer Taylor Scott is granted two weeks to interview a famous reclusive author, it’s the opportunity of a lifetime. So is the chance to rekindle her friendship with Mike Greene, who happens to be the author’s assistant. But as feelings deepen and time winds down, Taylor will have to choose between the story that could launch her career and an unexpected chance at love.

A Touch of Heaven

As Regan Amerson makes the emotional decision to sell their family home, her mother wins a home makeover from a reality TV show. Regan is furious, and jaded host Sawyer Bennett isn’t thrilled either. That is, until he meets Regan–and finds himself enamored by the fiercely independent beauty. She may want nothing to do with him, but Sawyer isn’t one to give up easily…


This book is a reissue of two previously published stories by Samantha Chase: Exclusive and A Touch of Heaven.  I enjoyed Chase’s Shaughnessy Brothers series and eagerly awaited each new title.  However, her other works have tended to be hit or miss with me.  Unfortunately, this collection was a miss.  Each of the stories is more of a novella length.  I find the novella to be a difficult format for romance.  The compressed nature of novella doesn’t really give enough time for the characters to develop or the story to breathe.  Both Exclusive and A Touch of Heaven shared this issue with both relationships feeling superficial.  The plots felt rushed and there was really no pay off with the couples in either story.  Both just sort of instantly fall in love and it’s a little unclear to the reader why.

Of the two stories I enjoyed Exclusive the least.  There was little tension to the plot and the mystery was very straightforward and easy to guess.  While neither Taylor nor Mike clicked with me as characters, I found Mike to be a difficult romantic lead to like.  He came across as very manipulative of Taylor and petulant when he didn’t get his way.  Taylor is passive throughout the story and one dimensional.  The story also wrapped up much too quickly with a tidy ending that did not seem earned.  A Touch of Heaven is slightly better, if only because neither lead is as unlikeable as Mike.  The premise of Regan and her mother appearing on a home makeover show had potential but again the plot felt underdeveloped and very straightforward.  Regan and Sawyer fall in love instantly, but do not seem to communicate well.  They talk about what a deep connection they have, but this is told to the reader not shown.  Like Exclusive there is a rushed and tidy ending to the story.

Overall, skip this collection as the stories lack substance or likeable characters.  Try Chase’s Shaughnessy Brothers series instead.

1/2020 Caitlin Brisson

EXCLUSIVE/A TOUCH OF HEAVEN by Samantha Chase. Sourcebooks Casablanca (November 6, 2018). ISBN 978149262268. 416 p.

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