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Friday, May 1, 2009

Educating Jane Porter by Dominique Adair

Educating Jane Porter by Dominique Adair
Publisher:Samhain Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short (109 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/F/M, Ménage, Spanking, Voyeurism, Anal Sex
Rating: 3.5 cherries
Review by Wisteria

Last night Jane met the Master of her dreams…

Tall, dark and very Spanish, Antonio Villareal is a lover unlike any Jane has ever known—undeniably sexy and more than willing to help her explore her submissive side. To find a master who’s a natural dominant is one thing. But kind and considerate, as well? She can hardly believe her good fortune.

Antonio is well aware that Jane is determined to keep their sexual relationship temporary. But he has a different plan in mind.

In the morning he introduces her to his best friend…

Warning: This book contains copious amounts of champagne, kinky under-the-table hi-jinks, a ménage to die for, voyeurism and angry shower sex. What more could you want?

Jane has decided to reclaim her sex life after a self-imposed celibacy. Antonio is just the man to show her what good sex is all about, but when he brings his long time friend Santos in to the mix, will it be more than Jane can handle? Will she be ruined for one-on-one sex forever?

Descriptive and captivating. Without a doubt a hot, steamy read that will leave you well pleased. What woman wouldn’t want two hot, studs sporting massive equipment, and the knowledge of how to use it, pleasing her? The only downfall I found (and what brought the overall rating down) was that the sex began to be a little redundant, but with it written as well as it was, I really didn’t mind.

Ms. Adair, I can’t wait to see what Jane learns next. Don’t keep us hanging. I sit on pins and needles to see the reactions she will get in the next chapter of her new life.

The White Knight by Josh Lanyon

The White Knight by Josh Lanyon
Publisher: Loose Id
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short (128 pages)
Other: M/M
Rating: 5 Cherries
Review by: Cactus

Actor Sean Fairchild has a not-so-secret admirer: a psycho stalker who thinks taking out the sexy, shy young actor will leave the world a better place. His manager insists Sean needs protection, and Sean's beginning to think he's right.

It's a Hollywood cliché: the hot and handsome bodyguard. But in the case of LAPD Detective Daniel Moran, it's all true. Dan is everything Sean ever wanted in a leading man, but Dan's kind of an old-fashioned guy. It's his job to keep Sean safe and in one piece -- happy is someone else's problem.

As tension mounts, Sean can't help turning to Dan, while Dan is finding it harder and harder to say no. Their only chance of a happy ending is if Dan can keep Sean alive -- but what happens when he uncovers the secrets Sean is trying hard to conceal?

Publisher's Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: Anal play/intercourse, male/male sexual practices.

Which do you prefer, the white knight or the dark knight? In the previous book, Lt. Dan Moran and Sean Fairchild are already in a relationship -- having met after Sean was stalked by a crazed fan six months prior. Then, the developing relationship was tested when Sean’s manager decided to continue stalking Sean to make him more malleable. Let’s hope not all managers stoop to that level with their actor clients but it’s Hollywood right? Anyway, the second stalking incident showed the flaws in Sean that he had worked hard to keep hidden and while they ultimately worked things out, Dan and Sean were left with problems still existing in their relationship.

Now Sean and Dan must once again confront the issues between them. Sean’s run off to shoot a movie in Wales and gets into trouble again. When he can’t remember what happened, he immediately asks for Dan but Dan arrives with some bad news – Sean already left Dan. Shocked and upset Sean thinks back to how they met and relives their past in an attempt to remember what his mind is blocking. Doing so forces him to confront the issues within himself and their relationship as well as the destructive comments and actions between them.

This is a beautifully written character driven piece that gives more background into how Dan and Sean met, fell in love and why their relationship suffered once Sean ran off without considering Dan. Sean’s a deeply flawed hero with a real terror of past history with mental instability and often questions his own understanding and perception of events. While intimacy and close friendships are hard for the shy actor, Sean fears he leans too much on Dan’s strong support and yet without it Sean is set adrift. Sean’s fears and insecurities play into the problems in their relationship as his quick reactions and biting comments are designed to simultaneously hurt and hide his own problems. However, Sean deeply loves Dan and truly wants to be with him, which makes him confront his actions with an almost painful honesty.

Dan is another fabulous three-dimensional character that shows his sensitivity in helping Sean cope with his past while not backing down from his own beliefs and perceptions. Dan has additional worries and fears beyond Sean’s problems, which include the basic differences in jobs, age, likes and dislikes and while Dan truly loves Sean he has to protect himself too. Dan struggles with this back and forth of loving and protecting his younger lover while not wanting to expose himself to a world of hurt. It takes a lot of strength on both sides to confront the true reasons behind their argument and separation and find a way to be together.

In true Lanyon style, this is an engrossing and absorbing story that you’ll be unable to put down. From the subtle humor laced throughout to moving characters, the quick paced read will have you aching for both Sean and Dan and wondering who may be after Sean this time. Even with the satisfying happy ending, these two have a long road ahead but no doubt it’ll be a really great ride. Although a sequel this can be read alone but it’s more meaningful if you’ve read the previous book first. You’ll be rooting for Sean and Dan just as much as I was.

Two Cowboys For Christie by Luxie Ryder

Two Cowboys For Christie by Luxie Ryder
Publisher: Siren Bookstrand
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short (64 pgs)
Other: M/F/M, menage
Rating: 3.5 Cherries
Review by Wisteria

When Christie revisits her childhood home, she never dreams that her adolescent fantasies are about to become a reality.

She'd once been inseparable from the boys on the next ranch, but Garrett and Connor are all grown up and the games they want to play now aren't for kids.

When the two men make her an offer to pick up where they left off one drunken night in the barn as teenagers, Christie finds she is tempted. But who wouldn't be with two muscle bound, blue-eyed cowboys offering to make all your fantasies come true?

Christie reacts as they hope she will and a hot, steamy night ensues, leaving her with a difficult decision to make. Should she let society and her own sense of what is right and wrong keep her away from the two men she has never stopped loving and the place that is her destiny?

What would you do if the two guys you had a crush on growing up turned into super sexy, studly cowboys who were both in love with you? How would you choose? What if you didn’t have to?

I loved the story. I loved the characters. I loved the sex! The ONLY reason this story scored this low is because I had a hard time understanding whether the men where brothers or cousins. There are several references throughout naming them as cousins and then they talk about their Mom and Dad and it’s the same parents for both men. If you can get past that little glitch you will enjoy it as much as I did.

Rest assured Ms Ryder, I WILL be reading more of your work. I always love a story with sexy cowboys you can really wrap your legs around.

Midnight Rodeo by Luxie Ryder

Midnight Rodeo by Luxie Ryder
Publisher: Siren Bookstrand
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short (50 pages)
Other: M/F, M/F/M, menage
Rating: 5 cherries
Review by: Tiger Lily

When the rodeo rolls into town, bar owner Talia's only interest is the extra money the increase in trade will bring. What she doesn't yet know is how the sexy blond Reb and the dark, mysterious Cody will make her question everything she ever believed about men, sex and her own desires.

Not only are the cowboys lifelong buddies but they also seem to have the same taste in women--each sending her clear and persistent signals that they want her while fully aware of the interest of their friend.

Unable to resist the lure of her own private rodeo, she succumbs to the cowboys' overwhelming mutual seduction. The relationship intensifies, sparking a rivalry between the friends that forces Talia to choose between them.

As the Rodeo leaves town again, will Talia have nothing but hot memories to remember it by--or will she be giving the cowboy of her dreams a Midnight Rodeo of his own?

Two hot rodeo hunks plus one sultry bar owner equals one hot night in Colorado. Want to learn more? A Midnight Rodeo is where to look.

Ms. Ryder writes intelligent and discerning characters that the reader can relate to. I liked that although Reb and Cody shared everything, they respected each other. It’s very infrequent that you find characters that are loyal to each other and to the feelings of the prospective partner – Talia. This short was a breath of fresh air in that respect. As heroes, Reb and Cody personified the alpha male: strong, devoted, and darned sexy. When they made decisions, they stuck to them. On contrast, Talia made an excellent heroine. She stood up for what she wanted and made it on her own. She embodied the human independent spirit. And the love scenes… whoa! Very hot and tastefully written. I couldn’t tear my eyes away.

If you want a steamy read for a cool night, Midnight Rodeo is the short story for you. I give this one 5 cherries.

The Red Velvet Horse by Iona Blair

The Red Velvet Horse by Iona Blair
Publisher: Siren BookStrand
Genre: Contemporary, Historical
Length: Short (102 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/F, Multiple Partners, Spanking
Rating: 4.5 cherries
Review by: Tiger Lily

Sextremely explicit and as naughty as can be!

The discovery of an erotic manuscript, written by a nineteenth century English woman, catapults a very modern heroine into a maelstrom of sexual experimentation and forbidden love.

April Ingram is the proprietor of Village Antiques, which she runs with her business partner and lover Holt Schiller. One day she finds an old manuscript hidden in a secret compartment of an antique cabinet. It is the erotic story of Hannah Wilks, a young English woman who lived more than a century before.

Hannah has been recently widowed. Almost destitute she ends up working in a dockside brothel to support herself. It is here that she is introduced to the joys and perversions of the Red Velvet Horse.

April is entranced by Hannah's story and becomes increasingly drawn into her world. She is fascinated by her sexual exploits and feels compelled to act them out with explosive results.

My, my, what you can find when dealing with antiques… a map or a lost love letter… or you might find a musings of a lady who traveled a winding path in search of happiness. In The Red Velvet Horse, April finds such a steamy tome and finds her heart’s desires.

Ms. Blair writes an exciting and interesting novella. Her characters are willing to explore their sexuality through the yellowed ramblings of the past. The overriding theme is letting a lapse in judgment damage a lifetime. Who can’t relate to that? We all want to make the right decisions, but sometimes fate sees things another way.

I liked April’s fascination with Hannah’s letters and found her recreations touching and steamy. I enjoyed following her on her journey to self-discovery. I like an independent heroine. As a lover, I enjoyed Holt, but wished he possessed more of a backbone. Honesty is the best policy and I felt that none of the characters truly understood this point, but that also made the story more believable. Real people aren’t always honest, much as we’d like them to be.

If you want a sinfully steamy novella packed with a hint of kink, then The Red Velvet Horse is the novella for you. I give this one 4 ½ cherries.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Fertile Domain by Jude Mason

Fertile Domain by Jude Mason
Publisher: Phaze Books
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short (134 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/F, M/F/M, M/M, Multiple Partners, Spanking, Voyeurism
Rating: 4.5 cherries
Review by: Tiger Lily

In a world where pollution and greed has pushed humanity to the brink of extinction, fertility is one of the priorities. Men must prove themselves to fertile fems. For those who are lacking, or who cease to please the women, harsh treatment follows. Two new men, Jax and Trev, vie for a place among the elite 'studs' of a beautiful fem. Will they succeed, will the love they feel for each other survive?

Jax is attracted to Trev. Trev is attracted to Jax. To survive, they must go to the Women who rule the planet. The only other option is to starve to death. What happens when the Lady in charge sets her sights on a new sire? It’s a Fertile Domain, anything can happen.

Ms. Mason writes a captivating novella. I liked her themes of female domination and role reversal. Some men treat women like cattle. In Fertile Domain, men find out how it feels to be the lesser individual: confined to stalls, fed from buckets, and forced to parade their sexuality. The men also have to figure out how to work together. Nothing can be worse than starving to death.

I liked that Jax and Trev never lost sight of their goal. We all know how it feels to be alone and the thrill of finding a partner to help encourage you on. I also liked the parallel love stories. That kept the reader engaged throughout the journey.

If you want an exotic journey through the eyes of one remarkable man, then Fertile Domain is the book for you. I give this novella 4 ½ cherries.

Deadly Inheritance by Jayelle Drewry

Deadly Inheritance by Jayelle Drewry
Publisher: Liquid Silver Books
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short (58 pages)
Other: M/F
Rating: 5 cherries
Review by: Tiger Lily

Locked away. Hidden. Caged. Starved and driven to the brink of madness, Ivan Harker is the prisoner of a madman. It is in the dark of his prison that he learns patience and feeds his need for revenge.

Gabrielle Murray dreaded returning to her deceased stepfather’s mansion, yet there she must stay until the estate is settled. Wandering the vaults beneath the estate, she hears a man call for help. Pushing aside the stone door of an ancient crypt, she thought to save a life, not lose her own.

Bloodlust and hunger drives Ivan to attack. Reluctant gratitude and remorse cause him to do the unthinkable--share his immortal blood. If she lives … he’ll be back.

He’s cursed to a life of eternal damnation because of the choices made by his ancestors. She’s inherited a house she doesn’t want because she’s the last member of her family. What happens when these two souls meet? Read Deadly Inheritance and find out!

Ms. Drewry writes an exciting short story filled with connections to the non-fiction world. But the story is told in such a fashion that the reader comes away interested and curious, rather than bored. Her characters are strong individuals thrown together due to circumstances they cannot control and have to make the best of. I like her modern day twist on the vampire theme.

One of the parts of the story that really held my attention was Ivan’s pacing. He got to know Gabrielle. Their strolls through the country to visit landmarks and churches were a unique means to get the characters together.

I also enjoyed the mega-hot kiss at the club. You could feel the steam of their passion in Ms. Drewry’s storytelling. Very hot.

If you want a sizzling short story filled with vampires, sex, and a shred of vampire history, then Deadly Inheritance is the novella for you. I give this one 5 cherries.

A Toy For Two by Jennifer Cole

A Toy For Two by Jennifer Cole
Publisher: Lyrical Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short (68 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/F, M/F/M, M/M, Ménage, Spanking, Anal Intercourse
Rating: 4 Cherries
Review by Hibiscus

Will Megan play it safe, or follow her heart and become a toy for two?

Megan Washington is the perfect long as she keeps her wild streak hidden. Only after a trip to the Le Club d'Esclavage does she give free reign to her sexually adventurous spirit.

Troy Simon and Ransom Seager need the ideal partner, and not just any submissive will do. Their third must match their passions and indulge in the roleplay both men find so arousing. With trust building and temperatures rising, will Megan's powerful politician father destroy the growing bond between these three hearts?

Book Two Le' Club d'Esclavage Series.

Warning, this title contains the following: graphic language, explicit sex, menage a trois, bondage, the use of sex toys, m/m, and nontraditional sexuality.

What can I say about the perfect daughter from the perfect family except -- maybe everything is not what it seems? Imagine any political family nowadays and you will understand the apparent background of this Washington family. This story, though, has a twist that had my heart breaking at times.

Megan Washington had me pulling for her through the entire story. I gathered that Megan was on the shy side. She was twenty-nine and looking for a special someone that could take charge of her. Her friends take her out for some fun and they actually set her up with a kind of date at Le Club d’Esclavage.

Dani and Natalie are Megan’s friends and believe that Megan is a submissive. I loved how they set all the wheels in motion to help their friend out. Their characters were well written and had me rolling with laughter at times. Dani’s conversations with Mike and her snappy lines throughout the rest of the story really were fantastic. She is a friend that anyone would be happy to have on their side.

My biggest problem was picking who I liked more, Ransom or Troy. Troy Simon was the owner of Le Club d’Esclavage and I loved his long dark brown hair and very masterful way. Ransom Seager is also tall with honey blonde hair. Even though Ransom is Troy’s sub, he took charge of Megan at times. By the end of the story, I decided it was too difficult to choose just one.

I loved how the story worked through Megan’s issues with her father. The way that all her friends along with Troy and Ransom stood by her had me cheering for the poor little rich girl.

I thought that A Toy For Two was such a good story that I am going to read the first book in this series about Natalie, At The Dungeon Master’s Hand and look forward to the third book about Dani. Jennifer Cole is an author I’ve added to my auto-buy list.

Captive of Love by Wendy Stone

Captive of Love by Wendy Stone
Publisher: Phaze Books
Length: Full (172 pgs)
Genre: Fantasy
Other: M/F, BDSM
Rating: 4.5 Cherries
Review by Bittersweet

The continuing story of the people of Daring Castle.

Trace and Ryder, sons of Lord Damien and his Lady Raven, have been kidnapped along with their hunting party. Disappearing without a trace, they are spirited to another planet, this one run completely by women. Ryder has captured the eyes of a princess while Trace is made a gift to her General. Can the two men reconcile the changes in their situations or will they fight being Captives of Love?

After reading “Bound by Love”, I became a fan of Ms. Wendy Stone. Therefore, when I stumbled upon “Captive of Love” and discovered it was the story of the sons of Daring Castle, I just had to read it.

In “Captive of Love”, women dominate men treating them as little more than sexual slaves. As Trace, one of the sexy, male character explains: “I will be giving away my freedom, giving away my right of choice, giving away my life to become nothing more than your sex slave” or as his brother, Ryder, more blatantly puts it: “I am naught to you but a slave, a cock for you to fuck”.

I would have loved a little more insight on the characters feelings, for at times their actions seem a little abrupt. For example, it seemed a bit unbelievable that Trace fell for his captive so fast, or though the attraction that Ryder feels for Katrina is undeniable, the why he falls in love with her is a bit obscure. I was also surprised to discover that Katrina in such a world was able to maintain her virginity.

However, these are but minor details, for overall, in “Captive of Love” Ms. Stone not only builds a great novel but she also leaves the word “hot” meaningless.

Along with a good dose of humor, magic, action, avid descriptions and love, “Captive of Love” is an unforgettable story.

SnowFire: Snow Job by Cameo Brown

SnowFire: Snow Job by Cameo Brown
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Sci-Fi, Paranormal
Length: Short
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 Cherries
Review by Agapanthus

Working undercover, Para Marshall Marina Fareeky thinks her sham wedding day will end with her arresting the groom and most of the wedding guests. Just as she’s ready to walk down the aisle, a minion from the Para Marshall’s Office shows up and informs her there’ll be no raid… and no way to avoid her fate. Aleksi Nicholas, eldest son of the Nicholas vampyre clan, watches his reluctant bride shuffle toward him. He’s waited long enough, and now he intends to claim the heart of the woman who’d rather arrest him than bed him.

Undercover work is always difficult. But when an undercover cop gets left high and dry on the day of her wedding she finds things are a lot more interesting than she had bargained for.

Cameo Brown does a great job in this short story. The characters are nicely developed, you really feel for the heroine, and I have to admit I got a tiny bit jealous of her as well. The plot moves nicely, with well defined scenes and interesting dialogue. And the erotic scenes are mouth watering, the sex in this story is almost tame in comparison to some of the stuff in this series but it is still so vivid it leaves you looking for a cold shower.

An excellent addition to the SnowFire series.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Soaked by Lena Matthews

Soaked by Lena Matthews
Publisher: Loose ID, LLC
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short (115 pages)
Other: M/F, Light Spanking, Voyeurism
Rating: 4.5 cherries
Review by: Tiger Lily

Ali Hernandez knows better than anyone that good girls finish last. Last in love, last in life and last in the line to get laid. Finishing last in the eyes of Jonas Lennox, however, is the final straw. When Jonas ends things with her because of her lack of experience, Ali does what she does best, turned lemons into lemonade. Six months later she’s forced to face the man she worked so hard to get out of her system at her friend’s birthday party.

The birthday surprise is on Jonas, however, because Ali's the last person he expects to see. He’s tried his best to put the sexy voluptuous woman out of his mind, even though she never left his heart. He knows he can't be the man she wants, because she'll never consent to participating in his voyeuristic and exhibitionist games.

Ali’s not as innocent as she looks though. When the opportunity to enter a wet T-shirt contest comes up, she jumps at the chance to prove him wrong about her. She’ll risked getting soaked, if in the end she gets her man.

Publisher's Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: Exhibitionism, ménage (m/f/m), voyeurism.

Which is better, to run from trouble or to cozy up with the devil you know? For Ali Hernandez, the choice is clear. She wants her man and is willing to test her limits to prove she’s the woman for him. Can Jonas accept this? Find out in Soaked.

Who would’ve thought a wet t-shirt contest would lead to love? Certainly not Ali Hernandez. Oh, she knew it would turn Jonas Lenox on, but little did she know it would start a fire burning out of control.

I like the original approach. When I think of wet t-shirt contest, I think of frat boys and lots of beer. True there was an undercurrent of that, but this story showed that a simple stunt can turn the blossom of a relationship into more.

I also liked that Ali willingly ventured out of her comfort zone. In life, nothing is comfortable all the time. Even favorite sweaters wear out. Sometimes you make concessions and find hidden desires you never knew existed. Although I felt Jonas was a bit rough and callous, I grew to like him and rooted on the potential relationship.

Who can’t relate to the intrusion of friends? Even if the interlopers aren’t friends, but family, who hasn’t been in some sort of relationship where others egged them on? I have and that made this story relatable to me.

If you want a steamy read for a cool night, or a novella that makes you think in sexy ways, then Soaked is for you. I give this work 4 ½ cherries.

Saje by Deborah J. Panger

Saje by Deborah J. Panger
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short (63 pgs)
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 Cherries
Review by: Wisteria

What could be worse than waking up lonely on May Day? Finding a naked male stranger with wings in your house.

That is exactly what Amanda Birchfield discovers when she stumbles out of bed to make her morning coffee. After rousing from a faint, Amanda learns her intruder, Saje, is a trinket-hoarding, seed-spreading bastard of a Woodland Fairy. And he’s brought her a room full of May Day Baskets in hopes she'll trade a little pleasure.

Instead of fleeing for her life--or admitting herself to the local looney bin--Amanda is drawn to Saje’s scrumptious body and carefree spirit. But once the brief, but oh-so satisfying sexcapade atop her dining room table is over, he refuses to leave. How will she get rid of him. Or will she want to?

Amanda is lonely. Since catching her fiancé in a compromising position and the wedding canceled, no one ever came to see her. With no friends and a sucky job, her life just feels like crap. Until a chance encounter with a sexy, horny fairy changes everything and gives her reason to love life again.

Saje is a fresh, whimsical story that will leave you breathless. I can only imagine the bewilderment of waking one morning to find a sexy, naked man sporting wings in my home. But I think Amanda “handled” him the best way possible ;)

Fresh and fun, with characters you will love and a witty sense of humor, this story will leave you with a smile on your face and a warm spot in your…er….well, you get the idea!

Wishing Ms. Panger a boat load of sales and many, many more stories like this one to tease, please and leave you panting. Bravo, my dear, it was one hell of a ride!

Nothing to Fear by Lacey Savage

Nothing to Fear by Lacey Savage
Publisher: Loose ID, LLC.
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short (127 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/F, M/F/M, Ménage, Spanking
Rating: 5 Cherries
Review by Cholla

Three women haunted by horrors from their pasts. Four men who want to show them there’s Nothing to Fear...

In the Air
If Kirk Healey hadn’t threatened to steal her biggest client, Meadow Gardiner would never have boarded another plane. In flight, only Kirk’s smoldering touch keeps Meadow from succumbing to soul-numbing fear. As kisses lead to a frantic encounter in the airplane lavatory, Meadow must trust her greatest rival to see her safely back on solid ground.

In the Dark
When a total blackout forces Shelly O’Rourke to face her paralyzing fear of the dark, she’s rescued from engulfing terror by the scorching caress (and occasional spanking!) of her estranged-and presumed dead-husband. Making love to a memory forces Shelly to confront her deepest fears...and some are just as menacing by the light of day.

In their Arms
Jennifer Meehan has no qualms about taking two lovers. A long history of cruel betrayal has taught her that unbridled sex is the only way to guard her heart. But the men she’s been seeing separately have joined forces, and now the time has come to reveal all: her body, her soul, and every secret fear she harbors in her heart.

Publisher's Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: Anal play/intercourse, male/male sexual interaction, ménage (m/f/m), mild spanking.

Lacey Savage outdoes herself in this erotic romp through a collection of common phobias: flying, darkness, and intimacy. In each short, the heroine is faced with her fear and finds a steamy, sexy way to overcome it. With a little help, of course.

In the Air is the first novella in this collection and one of the most exciting. Frightened of flying, Meadow Gardiner is prepared to conquer her fear head on. Little does she know that her arch enemy, Kirk Healy, will be coming along for the ride. Meadow is a strong, upfront kind of woman. She knows her limits and is bound and determined to push them in order to get what she wants. Kirk comes off as a bit of a jerk at first until his real plan of action surfaces.

In the Air is followed by my favorite story in the series, In the Dark. In this second story, Shelly O’Rourke is coping with having been abandoned by her husband only to discover that he just may be dead. Shelly is an emotional woman struggling to come to grips with the way her life is headed, while trying to reassure her son. While on a flight to Madrid, Shelly is staying in a hotel when the city experiences a blackout. I think this was my favorite not because it was the most explicit, or the most emotional, but I think it was probably the most intense of the three. Trapped in the darkness and surprised by what you least expect…

In Their Arms finishes off the trio of stories with a bang. Jennifer Meehan suffers from the saddest of all phobias – the fear of being close to someone. She doesn’t let it interfere with her pleasure seeking, however, and has found not one but two constant lovers to run to when she needs them. This is a sweet and steamy story of how her two lovers turn the tables on her and help her on her way to learning to love and trust for the first time in many years.

Nothing to Fear is a wonderful collection of stories centering on something we’re all familiar with – the fear of something. Lacey’s frightened heroines are strong and seductive, scared and sexy. And as an added bonus, all three stories connect in a way that you’re really reading one story told from many viewpoints. It was a fascinating and different touch that made Nothing to Fear an even more enjoyable read.

Casino Star Shine by Sultry Summers

Casino Star Shine by Sultry Summers
Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short (97 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/F, M/F/F, Multiple Partners, Spanking, Voyeurism
Rating: 4.5 cherries
Review by: Tiger Lily

Intrigue, sex and planetary domination are swiftly flowing stellar undercurrents at Casino Star Shine.

Sold by space pirates to Casino Star Shine, Blaze is determined to escape before she is sold at their virgin auction. Her escape attempt is foiled as, tackled by Casino guards, she tumbles at the feet of Lord Kalx.

Attracted to the fiery duchess, Kalx’s vacation of gaming and exploring erotic escapes with the Casino’s trained ladies dulls. Biding his time until he can buy Blaze at the auction, he meets an ominous woman general. She’s rumored to be intent on buying Blaze as a ransom in exchange for a rare mineral found on her world, and Kalx senses her malicious intent. Outbidding the general, he wins Blaze and marries her to unite their two worlds.

A relationship of master versus slave/wife turns to one of trust, respect and love. However, the general is determined to snatch Blaze by any way possible, including murder.

What do you do when you have something valuable? Guard it with your life. What about when the valuable item is another person you hardly know? Buy them at the Casino Star Shine.

Kalx is a king and excellent judge of people. He can sense when they have evil on their minds. Minestra simply wanted to defend her land, until pirates took that away. Her fire and attitude either reels people in or pushes them away. In Kalx’s case, he’s hooked.

I liked Ms. Summers writing. Her characters are engaging and keep the reader interested in the story. The details are rich and sumptuous. She uses secondary characters well to buoy the story.

The relationships between the characters happen fast, but I liked that Kalx took to her based on her being, not her beauty. People can relate to that. We want to be wanted for who we are inside. I also liked that they worked together for the common good. They shared the heroism. And the baddie? Very nicely evil. You rooted for her to see defeat or die trying.

If you want a saucy read for an afternoon at the beach, then find a copy of Casino Star Shine. I give this novella 4½ cherries.

Yummy Love 3: Apple Crisp by Kate Hill

Yummy Love 3: Apple Crisp by Kate Hill
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Adventure, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short (76 pages)
Other: M/M, Voyeurism
Rating: 4.5 Cherries
Review by: Tiger Lily

Cass is a gardener at a magical museum near Hot River. He takes loving care of all the trees and plants and is pleasantly surprised when Fidel, a Transcendent apple tree sprite, decides to show his appreciation. Cass quickly learns that Fidel is harder to resist than his favorite dessert.

Since his Transcendence Ceremony, when he changed from an ordinary tree sprite to a shapeshifter, Fidel has stood silent and alone. Hurt by his former lover, he thought he'd never fall in love again, but Cass has lured him out of hiding.

Cass finally believes he can put his dark past behind him and find a new life with Fidel. Then a killer begins stalking Transcendent sprites. Fidel suspects his old lover of the crimes and he and Cass must risk everything to stop him.

There’s evil about, but there’s also the flush of new love to counteract it. Which will prevail? And are apples the way to a man’s heart? Find out in Yummy Love 3: Apple Crisp.

Cass tends the garden at the Fairy Museum. His favorite tree to tend is an apple tree. Many of the trees are truly shifting Transcendental Tree Sprites. When Fidel, the apple tree sprite, breaks his self-induced silence he finds that Cass just might be the man to break his heart.

I liked that this story wasn’t simple. There were quite a few plot twists that kept me engaged in the story and rooting for love to conquer all. I also liked that Cass believed in Fidel. True trust and admiration is something rarely found in the real world, but Cass and Fidel shared it.

Ms. Hill writes interesting characters, though fantastic, that are easy to identify with. We all make decisions we aren’t proud of, but the strong do find ways to rise above the tragedy. She uses pacing and brilliant descriptions to pull the reader in from page one until the very end.

If you’re interested in a story that‘s filled with a pair of handsome heroes and an exotic love affair, then Yummy Love 3: Apple Crisp is the short story for you. I give this story 4 ½ cherries.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Modern Day Vampires: Vampire 101 by Paige Tyler

Modern Day Vampires: Vampire 101 by Paige Tyler
Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Full (153 pgs)
Other: M/F
Rating: 5 Cherries
Review by Wisteria

Savanna Royce is a weekend Goth-girl who has always been fascinated with vampires. She doesn’t really believe in them, of course, but that changes when she is bitten by a rogue vamp and left for dead.

Fortunately, two-hundred-and-seventy-eight year old vampire Kaige Travers is there to rescue her. Unwilling to let her die, he turns Savanna into a vampire to save her life, not knowing if she’ll thank him or hate him for it.

While Kaige is teaching Savanna what she needs to know about being a vampire, neither of them can deny the chemistry that’s there. Somewhere between getting her registered at the local vampire admin office and teaching her how to order blood on the internet, they fall for each other, fast and hard.

Just as things are heating up between the sheets–and everywhere else–they encounter one minor problem. The rogue vampire who attacked her is back and this time, he wants to finish the job he started.

Savanna Royce has always had a thing for vampires. Mysterious, dark and dangerously sexy -- what more could a girl want? Kaige Travers has been around for a couple of centuries but has never had a woman affect him like Savanna. After a brutal attack in a back alley leaves Savanna fighting for her life, what else could Kaige do but turn her.

Absolutely delightful and wickedly tempting, Ms Tyler has put a new spin on the vampire curse giving it a fresh look. Filled with deliciously sinful love scenes written to set the sheets on fire and characters that will make your mouth water and leave your eagerly flipping to the next page to see what happens next. Guaranteed to tease the senses, push you to the brink and leave you squirming in your seat.

There is no way I will be missing anything Ms Tyler puts out next. My hats off to the author, a splendid job!

My Lady by Shiloh Walker

My Lady by Shiloh Walker
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Action/Adventure, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Full (161 pgs)
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 cherries
Review by Lotus

In the darkest of nights, hope shines through.

Pawn in her father’s maniacal quest for power, Princess Nae Corda doesn’t see any way of escaping her impending marriage to the leader of the Oonkaen. That is until a dark shadow enters her prison-like bedroom—and offers her hope.

King Tyan will do anything to save his kingdom and the lives of his goblin people—even if it means flying into his enemy’s land to steal away an elvish princess. Ty has plans for Princess Nae. What he didn’t plan on was falling for her—heart, wing and soul.

But in a world where war, dragons, lies and danger lurk everywhere, the future is uncertain at best.

Warning: This title contains dragons, goblins and elves all behaving badly.

There’s a kind of romance that features swinging sleeves and soaring dragons, dark princes and, above all, political machinations that must be solved by marriage. This is the kind of romance that founded the genre and, lucky for us all, it hasn’t yet died out. My Lady is that kind of romance. From the first pages Walker reveals a world of castles and cottages, plains and cities, where bravery and chivalry are present in men and women both, and where wars are fought justly, and treaties must be upheld. It is a story where an elf princess can fall in lust, and then love, with a goblin prince, and where that can actually solve everything.

That’s not to say that My Lady doesn’t have its faults—the business of deflowering poor Nae is epic in its pain and gore, and the sex scenes have a contemporary feel that the rest of the story doesn’t—but these are far outweighed by its successes. Nae is a realistic princess, hapless and tough, brave and complicit. She approaches everything that happens to her with an honesty and level-headedness that is all too rare in romantic heroines. Ty is perfect for her. He is older, steadier, more experienced, and yet utterly undone by her strength and honesty. They make perfect sense as a couple, and it is a joy for the reader to watch them overcome all their self-imposed obstacles to move towards their happy ending.

My Lady would be almost embarrassingly blissful and by-the-book if it wasn’t for its underlying theme of tragedy and reality. This is a story about nations at war. People die, sometimes horribly, and without regard for rank and importance in the story. And you will feel the death, almost as keenly as the characters do. You really, really want everything to work out all right in the end, no matter what the odds. That’s magical, and it’s the essence of old-fashioned romance. Read My Lady if you’re prepared to be swept away into a world where the just will always win, and love will always triumph. And there be dragons…