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Friday, December 12, 2008

Master Sergeant

Master Sergeant by Kelli Zel
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: short
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 cherries
Review by Hibiscus

When Lola stopped at the grocery store, she had no idea she’d be picking up a Master Sergeant...

After a brief flirtation with a mouth-watering hottie in the produce section, Lola hurries to her car, hoping to beat the predicted snow storm. Instead, she accidentally runs down the sexy soldier with her cart. Though he assures her he's fine, concern for his condition along with her body's sizzling reaction to his heated touch prompts Lola to take him home and administer a bit of personal first aid.

This was a cute little short that I found to be very enjoyable. When Damon blows off Lola by calling her old, she is crushed. Then the weather turns bad and the man in the truck behind her seemed like a jerk, because he keeps blowing his horn at her. It turns out he's flirting with Lola. I enjoyed her thoughts as she kept up the flirtation from her car. When she lost the truck behind her, I was a little disappointed.

At the grocery store, Lola sees her soldier from the truck several times. We learn that he is all alone and newly stationed in Minnesota. The scene with the checker had me in stitches. Then Lola rams into Sam with her shopping cart hard enough to put a grid in his forehead. I agreed with her assessment to bring him home with her to keep an eye on his possible concussion.

Things really heated up at Lola's home. The sexual quips that they traded were well written and razor sharp. Details may have been sketchy at the beginning of the story but not so at the end. I could feel the building heat in Lola and Sam's reactions to her TLC.

This was a very concise story that had more heat than many longer stories. I enjoyed Master Sergeant and think it is a good, complete read when you have only a small amount of time.

The Midnight Rose

The Midnight Rose by April Vine
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 cherries
Review by Lilac

Ryan Redford's reputation as a hard-nosed secret service agent in Cape Town, South Africa nearly goes out the window when his best friend's sexy, all grown up, little sister orchestrates an all-out, everything bared, seduction. To protect both his body and his heart, he describes the most depraved acts he can think of--everything he's fantasized about doing to her--sure to scare the virgin away. Hell, they scared him.

Except when she takes his threats as promises, she expects him to deliver.

Leah Jenkins was not taking no for an answer. She would deal with the consequences tomorrow but, tonight, Ryan Redford owed her--big time. Eight-year-old memories etched into her brain like a perpetual flame had kept her a virgin because no other man but Ryan would do.

Payback was said to be a bitch, but this time it's guaranteed to be a pleasure.

In this hot tale, Leah Jenkins has had a crush on her brother’s best friend, Ryan Redford for years…a crush that has prevented her from being with other men as Ryan is all she can think about. Ryan has always treated her like a little sister and she has had enough. She decides to act on her impulses and seduce the sexy secret service agent. Despite his attraction to Leah, Ryan has reluctantly resisted due to his friendship with her brother. When the little virgin sets out to seduce him, Ryan finds his resistance weakening.

The Midnight Rose scorches right from the very first page as we meet Leah when she is picking out lingerie for her special evening and imagining what she would like to do with an unsuspecting Ryan. From there things only get hotter as Leah and Ryan discover what more can be between them. I enjoyed the history that Ryan and Leah share with one another and chemistry between them is palpable. The sister/brother’s best friend plot was one that I really enjoy and I loved how the author handled it.

A very quick read, the story was a bit too short for my tastes as I would have loved to know more about their relationship and what would happen next, but as a short story the author did a good job of creating likeable characters in a realistic setting or scenario. I became invested in these characters and their relationship and wanted to know more. However, the story does start out a bit slow and it took me a bit to really get into it, but despite this, it was still very enjoyable.

The Midnight Rose is a very hot and fast read that I am glad I read.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Spaceport: Highest Bidder

Spaceport: Highest Bidder by Lexxie Couper
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Sci-Fi, Paranormal
Length: Short
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 cherries
Review by Eglantine

Ezelain Dream-Invader Dreylan Tarq was once the IAC’s most decorated Peace-Keeper -- until he found his wife in his boss’s arms and his boss’s hands on his wife’s ass. Dreylan’s world changed and now he works only for himself -- or for whoever’s brave enough to pay him the chits.

Sent to Spaceport Adana by the one man he despises the most, Dreylan must buy the Terran slave, Naya Kistara, whatever the cost. Naya is a reiphia, a rare and valuable empathic mesomorph who permanently and irreversibly becomes her first sexual partner’s ideal mate in every way. She is also Old Earth’s only hope of becoming a member of the Interplanetary Alliance Council. Without her, the planet’s vulnerable, neglected people will surely perish.

What Dreylan finds on ’Port Adana, however, is not just a virgin being sold into slavery, but a woman of fire and passion and strength. A woman who stirs his body like no other. A woman with a secret.

Revenge is powerful motivator. But then, so is desire.

Tarq lost everything after finding his wife in his boss’ arms. A highly decorated peacekeeper for the IAC, he ends up a drifter with little on his mind other than finding a bar that still searches the elusive Ozio, a potent drink from his decimated home planet. He refuses to use his talent as dream-invader ever again.

A chance to restore his honor and position presents itself when his former boss summons him and gives him a job: go to a slave auction and buy a rare and precious gem: a reiphia, a human woman born only once in 500 years. When Naya is penetrated for the first time by a man, her psyche will transform until she is that man’s perfect mate. Tarq’s boss wants this woman, at any price. But when Tarq sets eyes on Naya he recognizes her as the woman who’d been in his erotic dreams for months. He buys her as he’d been instructed, but can he condemn her to a lifetime with a man he knows to be a monster?

I so enjoyed reading this very spicy tale. Ms Couper creates a believable, gritty futuristic world populated with three-dimensional characters. There are plenty twists and turns to satisfy even the most ardent reader of SF. The sex is really sizzling, and the surprise ending is so imaginative. There’s one slightly ew-inducing scene, but it involves the villain, so nyah to him! Definitely worth your time and money.

Double Booked

Double Booked by Sommer Marsden
Publisher: eXcessica Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short
Other: M/F, Spanking, Voyeurism
Rating: 3.5 cherries
Review by Hibiscus

All Blyth wants is a nice relaxing getaway from her wreck of a life and ass of an ex, Johnny. What she gets is a double booked condo with the playboy from Hell. First she walks in on him in the middle of very loud sex. Then she gets caught looking. And God help her, she's turned on. Unfortunately, he's on to her and he calls her on it. Anthony is rude, infuriating and definitely a player. Blyth knows she's in for an anything but relaxing vacation if she's going to have to share quarters with the likes of him. What Blyth isn't counting on is being sucked into his vortex of sex or the fact that he seems to be able to push her past boundaries she didn't even know she had. Somewhere in the midst of his parade of girls and huge ego is a real man. Who has real hurt. And the real part of him is calling to her. First with temptation, then with sex and then something more. She's just not sure if she's strong enough to answer.

I found Double Booked to be a very good story about two wounded people who are brought together by a mutual friend to hopefully heal each other.

Blyth Monroe is a twenty nine year old woman who's boyfriend of five years cheats on her. Oh course Blyth leaves him, but she is difficult to be with. After two months, her friend Craig forces her to take a vacation at his beach house. I felt that Blyth needed to get away and enjoy herself. Unfortunately, she walks into the same situation that occurred with her ex. Blyth is turned on by her roommate and would like to get together with him for a little R & R. Anthony keeps telling her that she isn't ready. I could understand her frustration when she is practicality throwing herself at him and he keeps saying not now.

Anthony Street is enough to make any woman weak in the knees. Woman keep throwing themselves at him and he takes them up on it. Everyone except Blyth, that is. He knows all about her situation and I get the feeling that he is trying to help her in his own way. I think he really starts to care for her and that frightens him and makes him want to not have intimate relations with Blyth.

The conversations and fights that Anthony and Blyth have regarding the opposite sex and themselves were great. I felt that I was in the room with them as they fought. Things really came to a boil when Johnny shows up at the beach house. And can I talk about boiling. The sexual scenes were very explicit and had me feeling each caress and warming with every spank.

My only beef was with the editing of the book itself. There were the standard errors of homonyms i.e. bear used instead of bare and the incomplete spelling i.e. the instead of them. The one blatant error was when Johnny showed up at the beach house and Blyth referred to him as Anthony. Mind you, Anthony was not even in that whole scene. If not for these editing errors, I would have enjoyed Double Booked much more than I did as these errors throw stumbling blocks in a good read. If you can overlook these errors, Double Booked is a good story that is worth reading.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas Rescue

Christmas Rescue by Sultry Summers
Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press Torrid
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Contemporary, Holiday (Christmas)
Length: Short
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 cherries
Review by Lilac

Alone in her family’s 100 year old ranch house, Christina anticipates a Blue Christmas but not the crash of an alien craft in her pasture. Concerned for the occupant, she bravely risks her life to rescue the pilot, taking the unconscious alien back to her home. When the alien, Trintous, awakes their mutual attraction is overwhelming. In the week that follows Trintous repairs his ship, when he isn’t in bed with his Earth love, and Christina prepares to sell her “pet” breeder stock.

Each protects the other against imminent threats. He protects her from her inheritance-grubbing stepfamily and she protects him from government agents searching for a crashed alien.

Trintous intends to take Christina when he returns home to the stars, much to her disbelief, and he also plans a unique surprise for her.

In this interesting story, Christine is spending her last holiday in her family home before her stepmother and stepbrother take possession turn it into a ski resort.

Devastated by her upcoming loss, Christine plans on spending the time alone, but her plans change when she sees an unusual aircraft crashing down on her land. Upon arriving at the crash scene, she is shocked to see that it isn’t an airplane as she first thought but a spacecraft. She rescues an unconscious and unusual man from the air craft and brings him to her home. Once awake, she learns that her mysterious visitor, Trinous, is from another planet. Intrigued by the sexy extraterrestrial, Christine finds herself falling for him while trying to fend off her relatives and investigators from the government who detected Trinous’s ship. Trinous is also intrigued by Christine and plans to do whatever it takes to make her happy…even if it means taking her with him when he leaves.

This was an unusual and sweet story featuring fascinating characters and a great plot. I was intrigued by Trinous as he was a strong and yet gentle hero when it came to the heroine. His actions are very touching and I could see why Christine fell for him. Christine was also an intriguing character whose strength I admired. I really felt for her and what she was going through as she faced losing her family’s home despite her efforts to maintain possession.

I really enjoyed the story and found the concept fascinating, and would have loved to have read more about this couple. Christmas Rescue was a fun story that I was sad to see end.

Caught off Guard

Caught off Guard by Tonya Ramagos
Publisher: Siren Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 books
Review by Lilac

Fire Department Captain Dean Wolcott has struggled to tame the wild boy ways of his childhood. Now an adult, he's a responsible and respected member of the Silver Springs Fire Department. But with all he has achieved, there is one thing he still longs for…Veronica Abbott. The sweet, innocent, rich girl was always been out of his league, but that never stopped her from monopolizing his dreams. Now she's back, and the woman she has become leaves Dean with his jaw touching the floor!

After a life of domineering parents and becoming a widow in her mid-twenties, Veronica is finally in control of her future. And a future of excitement, surprise and spice is exactly what she wants. Her new business—a shop of sexual favors and lingerie—is sure to give her some of that, but it’s the prospect of Dean Wolcott that really lights the fire inside her.

Silver Springs Fire Department Captain Dean Wolcott has longed for Veronica Abbott since he was a teen, but believed he was never good enough for the innocent rich girl. When Veronica returns to town to open a sexy store that sells sexual items and lingerie, Dean is shocked by the changes in his dream woman. Having lived her life with controlling parents and after becoming a widow in her twenties, Veronica is determined to live life to the fullest and maintain her independence. She has gone from sweet and innocent to hot and spicy. Meanwhile, Veronica is just as surprised by the changes in bad boy Dean. He has worked hard to shed his bad boy image and ways and has become a respected member of the community. Together Dean and Veronica discover an attraction that is combustible.

Fires aren’t the only things hot in this great story about two people finding love. I really enjoyed the characters of the story and the chemistry that exists between them as their sex scenes steam up the pages. Great sexual chemistry isn’t the only thing that exists between Dean and Veronica. Both able to give the other what they need and have longed for their entire life: unconditional love and acceptance. But Veronica is reluctant to open herself up to hurt again and to risk losing her newfound independence. Her past relationships with her parents and her husband still haunt her. I felt the author handled the relationship and its difficulties very well.

In addition to Dean and Veronica, we are also introduced to a few other fascinating characters. Two of Dean’s fellow firefighters in this story, Tripp and Bailey, intrigued me and I longed to know more.

If Caught off Guard is anything to go by, I look forward to reading more in this great series.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Mermaid's Kiss

A Mermaid's Kiss by Joey W. Hill
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Full
Other: M/F
Rating: Best Book
Review by Viscaria

The angelic Jonah has been battling the Dark Ones for centuries. But his noble spirit has begun to tire with the weight of war-allowing a Dark One to strike a blow that severs his wings and knocks him into the sea.

Anna is a Daughter of Arianne-a direct descendant of the mermaid of legend. Anna's longing for love compels her to risk her very life to protect and hide the fallen Jonah. And the longer Jonah delays his return to the heavens, the more Anna's secret passions are tempted.

But as she falls more in love with him, Anna wonders if she's destined to lose her heart and her dreams to save Jonah's soul...

Joey W. Hill does it again. She’s given us another book full of profound emotion and personal discovery.

Ana is a mermaid with a heart-breaking legacy. One that makes her want to fight and have hope, but has shown her that there isn’t much she can do to change her destiny. Ana had an amazing amount of innocence that was really unexpected by me, especially when I took into consideration her seeming air of knowledge. She was an incredible character that I really loved meeting, and her joy in the world around her despite her “lot in life” was refreshing and heartwarming, especially in contrast to Jonah’s cynical air… which is definitely what Jonah needed. I suspect the contrast was exactly what Ms. Hill had in mind.

Jonah is an angel with his own legacy. He is battle-scarred and so weary that I just wanted to pull him in and soothe all those aches. An action he wouldn’t have appreciated, I’m sure. Jonah is Alpha all the way, but he is a dominant male who has lost his way in life and has such a dark air about him. I found him mouth-watering and heart-breaking all at once. Definitely a wounded hero if ever there was one, something Joey W. Hill does extremely well. He was in need of more than just physical healing, and seeing the world through Ana’s eyes gives him a much-needed new perspective that starts that healing.

I am always so very excited when I get another Joey W. Hill book to review, and I’ve come to expect certain things from her. A word of warning to die-hard Hill fans: This is not quite what we’ve come to expect from her! It was actually quite a bit more than I had ever expected. The usual aspect of D/s that are typical of a Hill book were not real strong in this one. There was still the give and take of that type of relationship between Ana and Jonah, but it was much more subtle. I might have said it was Joey W. Hill Lite as it showed a much softer side, but she maintained the intense sensuality (it was downright HOT don’t get me wrong) and just plain passion that one has come to expect from her.

A Mermaid’s Kiss was full of gut-wrenching emotion that had more than one moment where I wondered how Ms. Hill would pull off the HEA I was looking for. When it came I was pleased and surprised and left with the warm feeling we get from a beautifully written story. This was a journey in which the reader is swept along for the ride, helpless to stop, and yet not wanting to stop until we see how it ends. A climactic battle will have your heart pounding and your stomach clenching, I’m sure, as it did mine. This book brings an entirely new and refreshing take on Angels and divinity, blending philosophies that was surprisingly cohesive considering the wide array of beliefs incorporated.

This was a superb offering by Joey W. Hill that I feel will appeal to many beyond her loyal fans and draw a larger group of admirers to her work. I am very much looking forward to more books from this story arc… as well as the opportunity to visit with the secondary and primary characters that I met in this book. I would love to see more of a certain “dark” angel and his… love; not to mention several others that caught my notice. A beautiful book that gets my absolute recommend, and one that I will go back to again and again.

Time Traveler: An Erotic Trip Into The Past - The Great Pyramid

Time Traveler: An Erotic Trip Into The Past - The Great Pyramid by Etienne D'Artagnon
Publisher: Mojocastle Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal, Historical
Length: Short Story
Other: M/F
Rating: 4.5 cherries
Review by Hibiscus

In the desert heat, mummies aren't all that get wrapped up.

Caught up in his Uncle's intrigues, Cody is swept into the past. The only problem is his Uncle's time machine doesn't work quite right. He's never sure where or when he'll be when he jumps. All Cody wants is to get home and back to his life, but the Time Police have different plans and now they're after him.

Time Traveler: An Erotic Trip Into The Past: The Great Pyramid continues where Time Traveler: An Erotic Trip Into The Past: Stonehenge left off. Each segment is a complete story in itself and not dependent on previous stories. Once again, I found a lot of information packed inside this short story but I felt that The Great Pyramid had a lot more story to it as opposed to just background details.

Cody is the recipient of his Uncle James' watch that allows him to travel through time. He suddenly drops out of the sky into Ancient Egypt not only during the reign of Nefertiti but in front of her. Nefertiti takes an interest in Cody and she teaches him about preparation for the afterlife. I really enjoyed how the story kept Nefertiti in her role as the Pharaoh. Her take charge attitude really shows while she is in the tomb-like room with Cody. As Cody is returning to his room, the Time Police strike again but this time I learned a few more details about them as characters. With his oily hands, Cody has problems with the watch and once again time jumps. But where?

Time Traveler: An Erotic Trip Into The Past: The Great Pyramid tells a very good story in a few words. I look forward to reading where Cody next lands.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Hungarian Masquerade

Hungarian Masquerade by Lara Dien
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 cherries
Review by Hibiscus

Samantha Michaels is getting over her ex by taking an exciting vampire tour of eastern Europe. When she shows up at a costume ball in an incredibly sexy witch outfit, she knows she'll keep the Hungarian hunks drooling over her lush body—and guessing about her identity. She's sworn off relationships, but she's willing to walk the wild side for her last night in Hungary. And the man she's set her sights on is a dangerously handsome highwayman.

Professor and tourist Nick Tremaine fell for Sam the first time he saw the sexy siren on the Hungarian tour, but his attempts to be friendly were headed off. The ball is the perfect opportunity to prove to her that even a good guy can be a bad boy when he wants to be. He'll give the sultry witch a night she'll never forget at the Hungarian Masquerade.

Samantha Michaels is an accountant who has sworn off men. Especially smart men. After she was dumped by a man at her work, she decides to go on a tour of Hungary with her best friend, Ellen. Ellen convinces Samantha to wear a sexy witch's costume for a masked ball on their last night in Hungary. Samantha is a full figured woman and the costume shows off her curves. I could see the impression she made when she walked into the ballroom with her hair down and dressed in the costume with the mask. When she saw Nick across the room dressed in the long cape, I got chills. The heat coming off their gazes even from across the room felt hot enough to singe the door floor. Then Nick is like a hero, rescuing Samantha from a very large and boorish man.

Nick Tremaine is like no college professor that I know. Tall, dark, and very sexy looking along with being smart. Nick gets carried away by temptation and kisses Samantha even before they have their first dance. As kisses often do, this one led to more. Samantha and Nick do not unmask at midnight but Nick gives her a card before she leaves him. I felt like Nick was a professor who was not only smart but one who excelled in many kinds field work.

There were a few cute twists at the end of the story that I did not see coming. Sometimes friends are the best thing we can have. I know I would love one like Ellen. And I know that I loved Hungarian Masquerade and recommend it for a short feel good read.

Time Traveler: An Erotic Trip Into The Past - Stonehenge

Time Traveler: An Erotic Trip Into The Past - Stonehenge by Etienne D'Artagnon
Publisher: Mojocastle Press
Genre: Paranormal, Contemporary, Historical
Length: Short
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 cherries
Review by Hibiscus

Ancient Britain, fertility rites, what's a guy to do?

Caught up in his Uncle's intrigues, Cody is swept into the past. The only problem is his Uncle's time machine doesn't work quite right. He's never sure where or when he'll be when he jumps. All Cody wants is to get home and back to his life, but the Time Police have different plans and now they're after him.

Time Traveler: An Erotic Trip Into The Past: Stonehenge held my attention for the first line of the story to the last. I found a lot of information packed into nine short pages.

As a result of the murder of poor Uncle James, Cody finds himself the recipient of a watch that allows him to travel through time. It reminded me a little of H.G. Wells' The Time Machine only a more compact version. The only problem Cody has is that the watch has no instructions and Uncle James' inventions do not always work the best. Cody finds this out when he is being chased by the Time Police and he inadvertently times jumps to Ancient Britain and Stonehenge, right in the middle of a ceremony. I had a difficult time believing what followed especially with ancient priests surrounding the alter but I'm sure if the story were longer more details would help set the stage. All good things must end and Cody narrowly escapes capture from the Time Police as he jumps again.

I did enjoy Time Traveler: An Erotic Trip Into The Past: Stonehenge. It packs a lot of punch with just a few words. I wonder where Cody jumps to next?