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Signal Boost (Off the Grid)
Signal Boost (Off the Grid)
Price: £2.47

5.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed this a lot, 8 Jun. 2016
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Seriously cute story that follows on from the first book. I enjoyed this a lot, thought the dynamic between the heros was believable, and we finally find out why the power has gone out! Yay!

Sexy but not too explicit, this is NA at its best.


Gambled Away: A Historical Romance Anthology
Gambled Away: A Historical Romance Anthology
Price: £2.07

5.0 out of 5 stars A winning streak - All great stories., 8 Jun. 2016
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Each one of these stories is surprisingly awesome in it's own right. Unlike most anthologies, I enjoyed all these, most of which are closer to long novella length, so have plenty of space for character development.

Briefly:

All or Nothing: sexy and 'open' relationship with a hint of power exchange, this is surprisingly sweet as well as utterly hot.
The Liar's Dice: more of a mystery with romantic elements, this is infused with history and sense of place. No sex in this one, but controlled attraction.
Raising the stakes: a cute story with a sharp con-artist heroine, which keeps you guessing how she's going to sort it out.
Redeemed: a compulsively readable story of dealing with addiction and losing oneself. This is long, and keeps you on edge waiting for the h/h to get together.
Gideon and the Den of Thieves: a bit slower than the rest, but still a good read.

Highly recommended and cheap at the price.


Oxford Blood (The Cavaliers Series: Book One): An adult vampire romance trilogy (The Cavaliers Trilogy 1)
Oxford Blood (The Cavaliers Series: Book One): An adult vampire romance trilogy (The Cavaliers Trilogy 1)
Price: £2.16

4.0 out of 5 stars University life with vampires, 16 April 2016
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A fun, young adult at University crossed with a vampire paranormal romance. As with most vampire stories with young protagonists, it doesn't do to think too much about the internal consistency of the world. But if you can put your logic on hold, this story has good pace and has lots of interesting detailed insights into the world of Oxford University.

The main character Harriet is surprisingly blase about death and vampires and her insta-love with Tom doesn't make much sense to me. The love triangle character, George, is much more interesting as a character, and I hope that in the end of the trilogy she realises he is the better bet. I will read on to find out.

There is some on-page sexiness, but not as much as I'd usually associate with paranormal romance. It has more of the coy feeling of young adult or new adult, with quite light sex scenes, not too steamy. But the other parts of the book, the University life and the vampire plot, pulls the story on and it's a good, fun read.


Vati Leaves Removable Colorful World Map Protective Full Cover Vinyl Art Skin Decal Sticker Cover for Apple MacBook Pro Retina 13.3" inch (A1425/A1502)
Vati Leaves Removable Colorful World Map Protective Full Cover Vinyl Art Skin Decal Sticker Cover for Apple MacBook Pro Retina 13.3" inch (A1425/A1502)
Offered by VATI Trade
Price: £39.99

3.0 out of 5 stars White background isn't what I expected, 14 April 2016
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I too thought this would be transparent, and therefore it wouldn't matter too much that I was buying it for an old 13.5 inch macbook pro. But nope, it's white, so it has an obvious edge on my larger computer.

It was easy to apply, and will come off cleanly, so I guess I'll keep it for a while until I find something better.


Radio Silence (Off the Grid)
Radio Silence (Off the Grid)
Price: £2.47

5.0 out of 5 stars Thrilling, hot and tense., 13 April 2016
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No-one knows why all the power has gone off. We meet Arden when her friend John is hit on the head and she's about to be raped, when John's brother Gabriel turns up, shoots the men and saves Arden and John.

Gabriel is a hot Korean doctor, Arden is a snarky black book-keeper. I mean that is high levels of awesome just there.

Their relationship is smoking-hot as four young people try and find their way in a post- apocalyptic world. This book picks you up and holds you tight from the first page, and has a whole cast of compelling characters and did I mention, very hot sex? Oh this is just, so, so, so much catnip to me. I really, really recommend this.


Her Every Wish (The Worth Saga)
Her Every Wish (The Worth Saga)
Price: £1.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Slightly confused, high moral tone, 4 April 2016
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Beautifully written, a nice story and fine in many ways. Good in fact. Some cute bits, but a bit too moralising for my tastes, especially since this story gets a bit too mixed up with its morals. There were some bits of banter with Crash's family that didn't go anywhere and are probably set-up for another book, and I skimmed. But I read for the love story, which is where this falls down imo. Not a keeper for me.

In particular, there were a couple of, eh? moments mid-to late on. SPOILERS. OBVIOUSLY.

The main conflict between Daisy and Crash turns out to go something like this:
Daisy: I forgive you for that bad/morally dubious thing you did to someone else.
Crash: Oh yeah, do you also forgive me for this thing I am, that I can't help?
Daisy: Yes, of course.
Crash: Well, I forgive you for this sensible thing you did, that parts of society wouldn't like. And also I forgive you for me taking your virginity.

They are both then upset. BUT. Crash put the words in her mouth. She was forgiving him for morally dubious thing, it was HIM that brought up forgiveness for all sorts of other stuff he couldn't help.

Seriously, what do you do when someone says, "do you forgive me for x?" It's a yes/no question, and you're not going to be like, "no, I don't forgive you for who you are". So it's A LEADING QUESTION. IT'S MANIPULATIVE. I AM NOT COOL WITH A HERO WHO ACTS LIKE THAT. It's not very heroic. I'm okay with heros lying and all sorts of things, but unacknowledged manipulation is beyond to me.

Daisy is the first one to apologise. But Crash never grovels even half as much as I think he should. And seriously, he doesn't even fully figure out what he did wrong. So there every chance he will continue to put words in her mouth and blame her for agreeing with him.

But so far as I am concerned, she should run as fast as she can away from Crash and his velowhatsit. Because really - why doesn't someone Crash, or Judith *offer* her some security, rather than make her do everything herself. I *really* don't like Judith in this story, and I'm not crazy about Crash.

Daisy. Meh. I never understood her whole, "lying to herself thing". If being positive about life is lying to yourself, then everyone should, as the alternative is depression. I didn't understand the high moralising tone taken by Crash, or why Daisy needed his help at all.

I guess this just wasn't my thing. Daisy is okay. She deserves better than Judith and Crash in her life, who seem to me to be selfish, manipulative and unobservant.


Giving It Up (Pushing the Boundaries)
Giving It Up (Pushing the Boundaries)
Price: £2.84

3.0 out of 5 stars Contemporary American romance with a tiny hint of something different, 29 Mar. 2016
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3 1/2 stars, mainly because my much-too-high expectations weren't quite met.

I thought this was a bdsm novel with lots of Femdom, with both characters learning about home-bdsm as they go. Actually, it's more of cute way to get the two together at the beginning, with okay pretty much vanilla love scenes. Because really - the heroine's idea of being a Domme is putting on knee high boots, telling him to lie down and then giving him a massage. Now, there's nothing wrong with massages, but I was hoping for more of a power-exchange.

Basically, the whole story plays out in the normal way. He is too scarred by his ex / too busy, so he can't have her in his life. She cries and tells him she loves him until finally he relents. Every other character exists to read their minds. It's standard.

To be fair, it is better than standard because the initial premise is original and has *such* potential. But other than that, it's a very competent american romance, including some dodgy m/f stereotyping. If you're looking for an original contemporary romance, this is it. If you're looking for the next Natural Law bdsm romance/erotica, this isn't it.


His Pretend Baby: 50 Loving States, Oregon
His Pretend Baby: 50 Loving States, Oregon
Price: £1.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Different controlling-billionaire type story, 14 Mar. 2016
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The hero has Aspergers, the heroine is a black woman working at a women's shelter. This is rather like 50SOG for those who have gotten over the she's an innocent virgin thing. The whole thing requires you to suspend your disbelief, but then, so do *all* billionaire books.

I enjoyed it a lot, but it was ended a bit abruptly. I loved the set up, even with the brother (who was treated respectfully by the author) and the family dynamics. The middle is pretty hot, with a smidgen of a hint of bdsm. Go has a constant hard-on and is always ready to, um. Go. ;)

The ending disappointed me. The whole thing was a bit melodramatic and there were multiple threads of the story that weren't finished.

This was reflected in the word count of this story. It seems to be about 135 pages.

The rest is three other stories, in the version I bought of this book, anyhow. The middle one, His for Keeps, comes with a massive trigger warning because it goes from sweet romance to bdsm rape fantasy within about 4 pages, without any warning at all. I stopped reading at that point. Unsolicited non-consent play is not cool to me. The other books had some scenes from His Pretend Baby, repeated from the perspective of other characters. I found this a bit dull, and was skipping ahead to find the good bits. But overall they're entertaining reading, easy to get swept up with and great, original characters.

Apologies for the short review - I wrote a longer one and Amazon ate it.


Listen to the Moon (Lively St. Lemeston Book 3)
Listen to the Moon (Lively St. Lemeston Book 3)
Price: £2.84

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hot smex, history, and so much emotional depth, 7 Jan. 2016
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Sukey is happy-go-lucky maid-of-all-work, John is a stickler of a valet. This is not your average historical romance with three dukes per square inch. There are difficult employers, nightmare families and nicely shown characters all over the place.

This story sucks you in with the richness of the historical details of Sukey and John's lives and their emotional stories. It's gloriously messy and complex. Both are a bit screwed up, have confidence issues, have problems with their parents. John is 40, Sukey just 22, and that is genuinely an issue, with both falling into bad patterns of poor behaviour and having to break out of them to find their HEA.

Lerner doesn't hide from the un-glamorousness of the lives of servants (not much anyhow), and I love all the details. There is buckets of atmosphere, no wall-paper here. History buffs will enjoy this very much.

Did I mention it's also incredibly hot? Sukey and John have *a lot* of chemistry. Like, scorch the page stuff. There are plenty of sex scenes, and they are roasting. Hmm!


Once Upon a Marquess (Worth Saga Book 1)
Once Upon a Marquess (Worth Saga Book 1)
Price: £3.71

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Light and fluffy with lots of banter, 10 Dec. 2015
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80% banter, 10% emo hero, 10% martyr heroine

I suspect that fans of Tessa Dare, Julia Quinn etc. will really enjoy this. It has the light and fluffy historical thing going on that Dare does so well. If you like Milan's Talk to me Sweetly, or Unveiled, this is similar.

There's a lot to like in Once upon a Marquess. Lots of cute, cute, cute things. Kittens. Ducks. Children. But they didn't quite work for me.

I kept reading, because hey, it's well written and fun. But I never got that gut wrenching emotion that I adore in many of Milan's other books. I didn't feel that if I skim-read a bit that I would miss something critical or beautiful. The conflict felt quite forced, and I kept on rolling my eyes, saying really? Really? Is that a smart decision? I thought the hero was a bit dull, I would have liked him to be slightly less wonderful, (yes, he makes lists, yes, he's colour blind, but he does all the right things, all the time), so that Judith could dislike him with some justification, rather than seem really unreasonable.

Part of the issue was that I did not engage with the heroine. There was remarkably little pragmatism in Judith, for a Milan heroine, and I just couldn't understand why she was so blind on some things. There was also a main bit of the plot where everyone believed Judith's brother was dead, even though there was no body... need I say more? That's one thing, but there were several others. I think maybe if I was in a different mood, I would have been able to suspend my disbelief. The hint of politics (about the opium war with China) sits uncomfortably with the banter. I like the gritty reality of historical settings when put with difficult emotions, but skipping from light banter to moral outrage is more tricky for me.

Two things that bugged me, not related to the story at all. One, the fancy dropcap initial letter at the beginning of each chapter covered over the words on the next line, when reading on the kindle app on my phone. That made me grumpy. Second, and this is absolutely not fair, but all Milan's previous books are 2.99. This one is 3.99. Is that an unreasonable price for a book? Absolutely not. We're spoilt. But I feel like I bought a Tessa Dare book, and that wasn't what I really wanted to spend four quid on.

I'm looking forward to Milan's next contemporary romance. Maybe I am just all historicaled out? The tropes and banter just don't ring true for me anymore.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 10, 2015 6:28 PM GMT


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