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D. Phillips (UK)

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That Scandalous Summer
That Scandalous Summer

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars No plot, 3 Feb. 2013
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I didn't want to write this review for I love most of whatever Meredith Duran writes but this is not her best and I'll go so far as to say it's her worst book to date. Normally I read MD's book in one sitting ignoring the world around me but this one took me several days and what's worse I kept forgetting I had this book on my Kindle to finish reading it!

It pains me to give only 2 stars but with Meredith Duran I do expect better.

The book is about Mrs Elizabeth Cudderley who is the carefree widow in Bound by Your Touch and Michael de Grey - doctor and brother to the Duke of Marwick.

I could accept the shaky start as to how Michael goes into hiding away from his brother - although personally it felt forced. The first chapters of how the two meet are interesting and there is hope for a sizzling book but it all goes downhill from there. There was just no interesting plot, just a really boring story. There are pages and pages of Liza moaning about her disastorous love life and from being a really interesting character in previous books she ends up being a bit of wet fish. Michael de Grey as a hero is ok but the whole relationship/conflict with his brother is tenuous at best.

The book still had the great writing, brilliant intimate scenes and lots and lots of romance. All the good stuff but the story was really sorely lacking.

This whole book felt like a bit of a set up for series (with characters such as Liza's secretary to follow as the heroine in the next book) but it isn't that encouraging.

I'm going to treat this as an anomaly on Meredith Duran's part and go back to re-reading her best like The Duke of Shadows or Bound by Your Touch.


The Secret Pearl
The Secret Pearl
by Mary Balogh
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: £5.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Dark, 15 Dec. 2012
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I found this book quite dark in its plot and general story line. It has some controversial story lines with prostitution and extra marital affairs. To be very honest this book was a bit depressing despite being a good read which has the usual Mary Balogh excellent character portrayal and a realistic plot about aristocracy in England at that time. It's an unusual story so if you want to read something different, give it a go.
It did put me off the author who many have raved on about. Fortunately I tried her again with the Bedwyn series books which were excellent.


Wicked Becomes You
Wicked Becomes You

5.0 out of 5 stars Spicy and saucy, 15 Dec. 2012
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I had to write a review because I felt the marks here were unfair. Meredith Duran is by far on the of the best upcoming historical romance writers out there. I've enjoyed all her books and usually read them in one sitting. Like all of my favourite authors, there are books that I would re-read and others that I just enjoyed. This one belongs in the first camp. The usual magical ingredients are there: good plot, a bit of angst, steamy sex scenes (phew, they are really hot!), humour and well written dialogue. I also really like the characters, Gwen grows from being a timid, apologetic person to a woman who knows what she wants and who she wants. Alex's tries to fight off the attraction but ultimately fails. It's an great read with lots of pushing and pulling in different directions. Maybe this is why there are some average reviews but I like the pull of this book enough to have re-read it already and I will enjoy it in the future.


Perfect (Paradise)
Perfect (Paradise)
by Judith McNaught
Edition: Mass Market Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect, 15 Dec. 2012
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I love this book. I've re-read it countless times and I have no doubt I will be re-reading it for years to come. Despite being written in the 80/90's era and some of the heroine's clothing is described that way, this is what proper romance books should be.
The books main characters Julie & Zach have complex pasts that have made them into the people they are when they meet. The first part of the book is very much about the history of the characters. Then they get thrown into a full action dramatic plot, there is separation, angst, humour and lots of love. It's just great.
Just don't start reading it in the evening, it's a long book but you'll enjoy the journey every time.


HP Deskjet 6940 Color Inkjet Printer
HP Deskjet 6940 Color Inkjet Printer

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 15 Dec. 2012
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This is an excellent home printer. I've had it for 4 years and have had no problems with it - the ink cartridges are cheap and photographs come out good quality. Overall an inexpensive printer that does the job.


Someone to Love
Someone to Love
by Jude Deveraux
Edition: Paperback

3.0 out of 5 stars It was ok, 15 Dec. 2012
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This review is from: Someone to Love (Paperback)
Very average and I do find JD's works a bit hit and miss - when she hits e.g. Sweet Liar she really hits, and when she misses, she produces something like this book... a light and fluffy read. Forgettable after one sitting.


Lord of Scoundrels
Lord of Scoundrels
Price: £3.49

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Going against the grain, 15 Dec. 2012
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I know I'm going against most of the reviews here but I just didn't love it. I think 3.5 stars is more of an accurate grade.
This book is well written, and the author writes in a style that I would call almost Georgette Heyer-esque but it lacked a bit of emotion and credibility for me. I like a romance to move me, make me cry, make me laugh, turn me on, turn me off. This book did make me laugh a few times but overall I didn't find the actions and convincing. Maybe I'm more of traditionalist when it comes to romance books.
I did enjoy it but I don't think I'll be revisiting it.


Your Wicked Heart (Rules for the Reckless)
Your Wicked Heart (Rules for the Reckless)

3.0 out of 5 stars Not enough, 15 Dec. 2012
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I'm quite wary of novella's that seem to be quite popular at the moment to promote the author and also a bit of advertising for the upcoming release of a full novel. However I am a fan of Meredith Duran's books so I thought I'd give it ago. The problem with short stories is that it's incredibly hard to get a good plot whipped up, some character depth and a bit of drama. I just couldn't get into it and while I still love the way the author writes and read until the end loyally, I didn't get into the story and often had to re-read bits where the writing was a bit disconnected. I was lacklustre, none of the characters particularly memorable. So far, rating 2 stars.
On the other hand there was a chapter or two of the author's upcoming novel... and boy what I way to wet your appetite. This has bumped up the star rating from 2 to 3. This book is about Elizabeth Chudderley that featured in the Bound by Your Touch which I enjoyed immensely. The opening chapters have me very excited about January the 29th! Can't wait for the full version book where I can immerse myself for hours and forget about the world. Novella's leave me a bit cheated.


The Rough Guide to Tuscany & Umbria
The Rough Guide to Tuscany & Umbria
by Jonathan Buckley
Edition: Paperback

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Full of information, not necessarily useful, 30 Oct. 2012
I purchase this book as my husband and I were going for a drive-by holiday to Tuscany and it was the most recent on the area out of all the guide books available.
I like reading guide books in advance to get a flavour of what to expect and bookmark some things definitely worth seeing.
There is a lot packed into this book and some not very useful. It's also oddly written in a cynical way, as if the author(s) didn't really enjoy spending time in Italy or writing up this book. While the information on history and art in Florence is great for those that are passionate about it, it left me a bit wanting (for those less cultured!). Some of the bars/restaurants in Florence & Tuscany were recommended - I didn't think they were very good, we also spent a lot of time wandering around trying to find places that were either closed or didn't exist. This was not what I expected from a book that was printed in April and I was travelling in September the same year!
I wish there was more on the wine region of Tuscany and some better maps. All in all it was a good book but actually we used it mainly for booking accommodation (in conjunction with TripAdvisor) and we ended up using local maps and recommendations from the hotels we stayed in.


8 x Singer Plastic Sewing Machine Bobbins - 66k Curved
8 x Singer Plastic Sewing Machine Bobbins - 66k Curved
Offered by M&S SEWING MACHINES
Price: £2.40

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't fit all singer machines, 19 Sept. 2012
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Good product, fantastic price, sent in timely fashion... expect it doesn't fit my Singer 3120 from the 70s! I was looking for bobbins that are thinner than the ones advertised even though they are still curved. Still, for the couple of pounds spent I'm not really that bothered - I'll share these with friends from my sewing class as I've found the correct ones in a specialist Singer shop.


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