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Friday, February 18, 2011

Naughty and Nice Anthology by Shannon Stacey, Jaci Burton, Megan Hart, Lauren Dane

Naughty and Nice Anthology by Shannon Stacey, Jaci Burton, Megan Hart, Lauren Dane
Publisher: Carina Press
Genre: Contemporary, Holiday
Length: Full Length (246 Pages)
Other: M/F, BDSM
Rating: 4 Cherries
Reviewed by Holly

A famous singer reunites with an old flame. A couple explores their desire to be truly bound together. Newlyweds heat things up when they're trapped indoors. And sparks fly when the lights go out. Whether you are naughty or nice, you can still get what you really want for Christmas in this collection of four seasonal shorts.

Four holiday stories, two sweet and sensual, with love growing and flowing throughout. Two hot stories filled with domination and submission, but also filled with lots of love and romance. Something for everyone here, and lots of heat to warm a winter’s night.

Holiday Sparks by Shannon Stacey. When her parents take a winter cruise, Chloe Burke housesits for them. When she tries to warm up dinner, the microwave blows the fuses, and she realizes she out of her depth. Lucky for her, Scott Quinn is a skilled electrician, and the only thing he wants more than getting his hands on the Burkes antiquated wiring, is getting them on Chloe. He had a crush on her all through high school, but she never saw his geeky self. Now Scott is all grown up, and Chloe is seeing him through new eyes. But can she ever be happy back in the small town she escaped right after college? Scott will never move to the big city, so is he doomed to lose Chloe, just as he has found love?

I liked the idea in this, that it is never too late to recapture love. Chloe is a wonderful character, torn at first on whether to return to the big city, or stay in her hometown with Scott. I enjoyed watching her journey from determined career woman to woman in love. Scott lost a woman to the big city, and I sympathized with his determination to remain where his business and family was. I enjoyed watching as these two grew closer, and made compromises along the way to make it work for both of them.

All She Wants For Christmas by Jaci Burton. Country singing sensation Riley Jensen is back in her hometown for the first time in ten years. Not much has changed, and Riley would not have come, except for the biography special being filmed. There is still too much hurt inside. If she can just avoid the main reason she ran so long ago, she will be fine. But when a small girl in the crowd, her biggest fan, snares her attention, she finds that the child brings Ethan Kent back to her life. She ran when she found her best friend and the love of her life in bed together. What she doesn’t know is that it was all a plot by her friend to hurt Riley. Now, ten years later, Riley gets a new perspective on everything, and finds a fresh chance at forever with the man she loves. Can a young girl bring them together?

This is a wonderful love lost and found again story. I liked watching as Riley finally let go of old hurts and opened up to a new and grown up love with Ethan. I loved Ethan, with his insecurities where Riley was concerned, thinking he couldn’t offer her as much as her career did, when in fact he could give her the world.

Unwrapped by Megan Hart. Leah and Brandon Long are on their honeymoon, a Christmas-in-Vail ski trip. Leah and Brandon are happy, and they live out many of their fantasies. Leah knows Brandon loves it when she takes charge in the bedroom, and she enjoys it too. But when Leah takes a spill on the slopes just a few days into the trip, she gets time to think about things as she sits while Brandon skis. When a game of Truth or Dare reveals Brandon’s hidden desire, Leah decides to let him have control, and finds that she can enjoy it. And they also discover that, while their life may change, their love doesn’t have to.

Leah is a strong character, and she enjoys taking control. She is totally in love with Brandon, but she is nervous about the changes marriage will make for them. She likes their hot and slightly kinky sex life, and worries that they could lose the spark that burns between them. She is fiercely independent, and fears that she is too controlling, but Brandon likes how she is just fine. I liked watching these two discover new ways to enjoy each other, and figure out that while their relationship may change, it doesn’t have to become dull, boring and, as Leah calls it, vanilla.

Believe by Lauren Dane. Rori and Jude have been given a rare gift; a second chance at love. Jude loves Rori with all that he is, and yet, he wants to start new holiday traditions with her. Her dead husband was Jude’s friend, and Jude and Rori have been together for two years, ever since her husband was murdered. She loves their life together, and wants only to please the man she loves. When Jude surprises her with a Christmas trip to the mountains for some alone time, Rori is thrilled. But Jude wants to find a way to discuss some serious changes with her, things he hopes she will understand and agree with. Jude knows he has a treasure in Rori, a woman who finds his dominance in their bedroom a perfect match to her needs. Can he explain his other needs to her without driving a wedge between them?

Rori is a strong woman, and she is in love with Jude. She knows what pleases him, and it is this desire that fuels all of her actions. But just because she is submissive, doesn’t mean she is weak, and I like the little touches that show her independence. I liked Jude, the strong and very Alpha male figure, who has insecurities about what he wants for their future. Dominant in most things, I loved that he was unsure how to tell Rori what he wanted for their future.

These are four wonderfully expressive holiday stories, with sweet and lovely for those who like gentle but sensuous stories, and scorching hot domination for those who like an edge to their holiday reading.

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