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Friday, November 25, 2011

Hidden Depths by Emma Holly

Hidden Depths by Emma Holly
Publisher: Smashwords
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Full Length (242 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/F, M/F/M, M/M, F/M/M, F/M/M/M, Ménage, Anal Play, Forced Seduction, Spanking, Voyeurism
Rating: 5 cherries
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

James and Olivia Forster have been happily married for many years. A harmless kink here or there spices up their love life, but they can’t imagine the kinks they’ll encounter while sneaking off to their beach house for a long hot weekend.

Anso Vitul has ruled the wereseals for one short month. He hardly needs his authority questioned because he’s going crazy from mating heat. Anso’s best friend and male lover Ty volunteers to help him find the human mate his genes are seeking. To Ty’s amazement, Anso’s quest leads him claim not one partner but a pair. Ty would object, except he too finds the Forsters hopelessly attractive.

If a reader is looking for a happy ever after that leaves scorch marks on the sheets, flushed cheeks and fluttering heartbeats, then this latest sensual adventure by Ms. Holly is sure to please. The title, Hidden Depths, has a subtext to it that my brain appreciated. I believe it refers to where the action takes place and what is hidden in the hearts of the initial two main protagonists, Olivia and James. Later on, it delves into the hidden yearnings of the two other heroes. No one is quite what they at first appear – if that makes any sense. Every person is multi-layered and this book takes the time to find and explore those layers in each of its characters.

I valued the detailed approach the author took in giving me insights into what made the relationship between Olivia and James work so well. The set up gave me a solid foundation in understanding just how strong and pure their love for each other was before Ms Holly set the first lure. You see, most people have sexual fantasies, whether they admit to them or not. The most amazing kind of relationships are those where the couple can talk to and share with their partner about even the kinky kinds that makes them blush and stutter. Not only that, but actually explore them within the framework of their marriage – making it more vibrant and healthy. But some fantasies, those in the deepest, darkest part of us, are still considered too potent for exploring because of the possibility that they might take on a life of their own. What would happen if the opportunity to experience such a thing presented itself? What would happen if it turned out that what was feared as being ‘too much’ ends up being not only a sexual high for one but for both? How far would they explore it? Where then would the boundaries be? The author leaves no skin untouched, no emotion unfelt and no heart unaffected in the telling of Hidden Depths as those questions get answered and more.

The dynamics between Anso and Ty, the other protagonists in the story, is another intricately woven relationship. Anso is royalty and Ty is …not. I intuited early on that Ty and Anso actually loved each other but they were blinded by expectations, perceptions and position. It was very sad. I felt the most emotion for Ty because he was so hard on himself. It didn’t help matters any that there was a secondary character that dismissed him and reinforced his belief that he was less.

Truly, Ms. Holly knows how to engage a reader. Each character has something that needs healing, that needs loving and their own insecurities and worries seem like insurmountable stumbling blocks. Singly, with only Anso and Ty, or Olivia and James, that is true. But when the author gets all four together, it’s emotional magic.

Erotic romance readers are in for a thrill that satisfies on every level. Every little thing that can hobble a relationship is brought out into the light and explored until all the shadows are dispelled and the power of their love is proven. I thrilled to that little eye trick that proved just how perfect and right the ménage ends up being. Out of all of them, I was happiest for Ty. Very romantic and so perfect, I sniffled just a bit.

There were some important secondary characters, one being a troublemaker and the other, Violet, Olivia and Jame’s daughter. Violet doesn’t affect too much but she’s part of the healthy family portrait and the author was very respectful of that.

One thing Ms. Holly does is mix great emotional conflict with external drama and suspense. Readers will find that aspect in this story as well with the plot to overthrow the current king. Thing is, this is a paranormal so the machinations behind it all were fascinating and really cool. The descriptions were very well done and action packed. The only thing I was mad about was Olivia’s continued thinking about leaving. Even I could see that wasn’t going to work – she was in LOVE! Good thing her heart was stronger than her manipulated brain – it proved crucial.

Hidden Depths takes a reader on an exciting journey of sexual and romantic explorations; a feast of the senses that teases, pleases and satisfies a reader’s cravings for a well told tale. I had a ton of fun reading this story and didn’t want to stop reading for anything. Each character, Olivia, James, Anso and Ty, found a place in my heart and in my dreams. This is one ménage that has a depth of character with a sturdy foundation I could believe in. The happily ever after included every possible thread being tied up in perfect harmony and and it made me feel sentimental and gooey. Thank you, Ms. Holly, for writing another winner!

River Bound by Myla Jackson

River Bound by Myla Jackson
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Historical
Length: Short Story (80 Pages)
Other: M/F, M/F/M, Ménage, Spanking, Anal Sex, M/M, BDSM
Rating: 4.5 Cherries
Reviewed by Foxglove

What do a madame and a bounty hunter have in common? They want the same man.

Bound and Tied, Book 3

When Rosalyn Smythe, aka Madame Rosie, steps aboard the Marie-Dearie, she hopes it’s the end of a year-long search for her runaway fiancé, Dalton Black. Her cabin holds a surprise: James McKendrick. Notorious bounty hunter, old lover…a man only too happy to help her clear the air—and her heart—of her murdering, thieving bastard fiancé once and for all.

In disguise as a riverboat gambler, Dalton is determined to find who framed him for killing two U.S. Army soldiers and who stole the gold they were carrying. He wants his life back—and his woman, who just happens to be on board and on the arm of his former best friend.

Convincing James he’s innocent is easier than winning back Rosalyn’s heart. Especially since Rosalyn seems to be enjoying their competition for her affections a little too much. There’s only one place to work out his dilemma. In bed.

As the sheets become unbearably hot, threads of evidence leading to the real killer are unraveling, leading toward one fateful card game—and one man who’s hell-bent on making sure Dalton has nothing left to lose.

This is Myla Jackson’s third book in her Bound and Tied series, and it is one very hot and passionate reading experience.

Rosalyn Smythe left behind everything she knew a year ago to hide out aboard the riverboat Marie-Dearie. That was the night her world was turned upside down: the night Dalton Black proposed to her, and then jumped overboard to escape the sheriff and his deputies. Now, after her time in the west, she is back on the same riverboat, determined to lay the ghosts of her past to rest once and for all.

Dalton Black has been in disguise as a gambler on this same boat, trying to uncover who might have hated him enough to set him up for murder and robbery. And his former friend, bounty hunter James McKendrick, is on the boat as well, hoping to find out if the rumor of Dalton’s return is true. When these three collide, more than just old friendships will ignite. Both men want to claim Rosalyn for their own, but she needs to be sure before she gives her heart and her love to either of them.

Can these three prove Dalton’s innocence after all this time? Will the simmering passion between these three ignite into a firestorm none of them expect? Is there a chance for a happy ever after for Rosalyn and her choice?

After Rosalyn’s supporting role in the second book, I was ready to learn what was behind Rosalyn’s secretive nature, and her mysterious past. I love this world of Ms. Jackson’s, filled with virile and handsome, larger than life men, and independent yet sensual women. I loved the attention to detail that Ms. Jackson uses in her books, never adding anything that doesn’t fit the period she writes so richly.

Rosalyn, or Madame Rosie, needs to get on with her life. She is fiercely independent and more than a little angry at having been left by Dalton so abruptly. She still loves him, but is determined not to let him waltz back into her life too easily. She is going to let the two men try to woo and win her, while they work to try and clear Dalton’s name. I loved that she was not going to just take him back, and that she was ready to set her own ‘rules of engagement’ where these two are concerned.

Dalton is determined to do two things: clear his name and win back Rosalyn’s love. Both are lofty goals, and neither will be easy to do. When he runs into both Rosalyn and James, he realizes the time has come to try and fix things once and for all. He is more than willing to let Rosalyn set the rules, if it means getting a chance to win her love again. I loved Dalton’s perseverance and his willingness to do what his woman wanted to show his devotion.

James has loved Rosalyn for a while as well, but isn’t sure if he can be what she wants and needs. He is loyal, and a good friend to both Dalton and Rosalyn. I loved that he believed Dalton's story, and was willing to help him clear his name, even if it meant that Dalton would win Rosalyn in the end.

This is a story of romance lost and regained, of treachery and secrets and grudges held. The characters are all well-defined and multifaceted, with feelings and emotions that are complex and passionately explosive at times. The way the two men let Rosalyn orchestrate one of the most erotic scenes in this book was a delicious treat. There is some danger as they get close to the answers, and a sentimental scene when ‘Madame Rosie’ returns to her ‘house’ and meets with one of her girls is touching.

This is definitely a recommended read for those who like historical romances, but I would recommend that the first two books in the series be read for more background into Rosalyn’s character. Is there a happy ever after for Rosalyn and one of her suitors? You’ll need to read River Bound to find out for sure.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Chasing Seth by J. R. Loveless

Chasing Seth by J. R. Loveless
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Full Length (208 pgs)
Other: M/M, Anal Play
Rating: 5 cherries
Reviewed by Peppermint

Veterinarian Seth Davies comes to Senaka, Wyoming, looking for peace and anonymity, trying to escape his past. He’s always been a target for trouble and pain, and Seth has had more than his share of both. Kasey Whitedove takes one look at Seth and assumes the worst. No white man could love animals the way the mostly Cheyenne population expects, and Kasey makes Seth’s first days in Senaka more than unpleasant.

Then an accident puts Kasey in the uncomfortable position of eating crow—and helplessly desiring Seth—despite the danger of Kasey’s life as a werewolf and Seth’s stressful secrets. Chasing Seth down and keeping him safe from his past has just become Kasey's most important job.

This was a book with surprises I never saw coming, but I'm glad I read it.

At the beginning of this story, I could not stand Kasey's personality. Then as I learned more about the hero and saw how misguided his views were, I began to sympathize for him. Like many individuals who harbor prejudices, Kasey’s attitude stems from a lack of knowledge about others. While it is bluntly evident that Seth had lived a sheltered life, I began to realize Kasey’s life has been a bit sheltered as well.

Seth is by far the stand out character within this story. He is a sweetie any reader would only want the best for. I also wanted him to have the life he has deserved for so long. Even in life-threatening situations he is more of a loveer than a fighter. That is why he needs a strong alpha mate to protect his gentle soul. At the beginning of the story I saw Seth as a strong man, but as the story went on I began to see him a scared, vulnerable young man. With Kasey by his side, he just seems so much younger and I had to keep reminding myself he was a grown man. I would not say this is a negative feature however, because it made me want to cherish him even more.

The main players are great and so is the supporting cast, especially Nick. He is quite the character. Every time Nick was not present in a scene, I found myself missing him and wanting him back. He is one of those silent but deadly kinds of men that just melts me. I am keeping my fingers cross that J.R. Loveless creates another story featuring Nick. I'm eager to read his story.

This love story features a white male and a Cheyenne male. Their heritage plays a large role in the relationship development. Therefore, if prejudice is something that offends some readers then this story may not be for them. Additionally, Seth has suffered from an abusive situation in the past and there are discussions of his past abuse as a means to explain his actions towards his true love.

This was definitely a refreshing shifter story. I have found many paranormal erotic stories lately that seem so disconnected, they did not seem to flow. This author wrote Chasing Sethin a way that renewed my love affair with paranormal erotica and has me excited to read more.

Captured by B.J. McCall

Captured by B.J. McCall
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (68 Pages)
Other: M/F
Rating: 4 Cherries
Reviewed by Foxglove

The tyrant Targus has a new pet dragon.

Captured and tossed in an aviary, Zira discovers she is Targus’s new pet. The key to her escape lies with her keeper, a hunky human with a gentle touch who has no idea she can shift.

To please his master, Dragon Keeper Laros must make the new dragon fly. Zira shifts to her human form to seduce her keeper, convincing Laros his midnight visitor is his reward.

When the nights are Dragonfire hot, keeper and dragon may bond in a way neither of them expects.

B.J. McCall has a marvelous way with shifter stories, and this one is an excellent addition to her repertoire.

Following the tinkle of golden bells, Zira flies over the forest between the Fire Mountains and the city state of Brixa, ever watchful for a sight of the elusive bells. When she is ambushed and captured, she is made the newest pet of Targus, the tyrant who has been cruelly enslaving the people he has conquered. What Targus doesn’t know is that many of the dragons, including Zira, are shape shifters, and Zira plans to use this secret to aid in her escape.

When Targus assigns one of the thralls, or slaves, to care for Zira, she decides to use him to aid in her escape, and possibly even help when she brings the dragons back to exact retribution. It doesn’t hurt that her keeper, Laros is attractive, and Zira shifts at night to pretend she is his reward for making the dragon fly. Can Zira the woman convince Laros to sneak her out of the electronic cage before she reveals her secret? Can these two get away and get back to the Fire Mountains and safety? Can Laros give Zira the one thing she has never had before: can he bring her Dragonfire?

I like the world Ms. McCall has created, with the blend archaic and modern overlapping. The characters are well crafted, and most are very likable. This is listed as book one, so I am looking forward to more in this unique and different world of dragons and the people surrounding them.

Zira is a dragon of the Aurumon clan, gifted with the ability to sense gold, and it is this ability that leads to her capture. She is also smart, and able to come up with a plan to save herself, and free the people of Brixa who have been enslaved by the tyrant for his own greedy desires. I like Zira, with her determination and courage, and her desire to keep Laros once she frees them both.

Laros is a thrall, someone who has spent his whole life under the yoke of servitude to Targus. He is brave, and smart, and surprised when the dragon he is charged with caring for speaks to him. But he keeps this knowledge to himself, hoping that it will keep him from being punished by the tyrant. He is ready to be free and when Zira, in her human guise as Jaida, offers a chance at another life, he is ready to do whatever it takes to achieve that freedom.

This is one very hot and enchanting story, with danger and action, and the slow seduction of the senses that Ms. McCall does so very well. This kept me on the edge of my seat, waiting to see how these two would manage to escape to the mountains, and what would happen once they did. There were very few secondary characters, other than Targus and a few passing folks who were minor in this story. The focus here was strictly on Zira and Laros and their building relationship.

I recommend this story for those who still believe in fantasy, and in happy ever after in spite of the odds.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Artistic Vision by Dana Marie Bell

Artistic Vision by Dana Marie Bell
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Full Length (227 Pages)
Other: M/F
Rating: Best Book
Reviewed by Foxglove

Desire is the raw material. Lust is the spark…and love will sculpt their destiny.

The Gray Court, Book 3

Akane Russo, one of the Hob’s top Blades, can’t wait for her current assignment to end. She’s been tasked with protecting Shane Dunne from the Malmayne clan’s scheme to kidnap him once again. But no one—not even her Seer half—warned her she’d have to protect herself from his heated gaze. Or that her dragon half would find him an irresistible puzzle.

Shane knew his destined bride would never come to him willingly, but she’s stuck with him and he plans to use her predicament to his advantage. It’s only a matter of time before she succumbs to what they both want. Their Claiming will be beautiful beyond even his wildest imaginings—and his wild, free dragoness will finally see herself as he sees her.

Then his unique, hybrid-borne visions reveal a new danger. The prophecy of the Child of Dunne can only be fulfilled down a path he must travel alone. To a place so dark and dangerous that even his truebond’s flame may not be bright enough to lead him home.

Artistic Vision is Dana Marie Bell’s third visit to her Grey Court world, and is the best one so far.

Shane Dunne uses his visions to create magnificent art, and the most beautiful piece he’s ever done is of his mate, Akane Russo. Akane is one of Robin Goodfellow’s Blades, and assigned to guard and protect Shane from the treachery and plotting of the Malmayne clan. She isn’t anyone’s mate, no matter how gorgeous Shane is. Until danger surfaces and threatens to take Shane away forever-then Akane will do whatever it takes to save him and claim him.

As the Prophecy comes closer to being fulfilled, the danger around the Dunne and Blackthorn clans increases. When Shane is poisoned by someone he looked on as a friend, the only way to save him is something Akane is afraid may take him from her forever. She never wanted a mate, but now that they are together, no one is going to hurt him again. But which of the Malmayne clan is leading this latest round of treachery and betrayal? Can Akane dig deep enough to uncover the guilty party? Can she do what must be done to save the man she has come to love, in spite of her resolve?

I have been looking forward to Shane and Akane’s story for a while, and it did not disappoint. I love the depth Ms. Bell adds to each of her characters, and the many layers of this very magical and mystical realm, with the Black, White and Grey Courts. This is a thrill ride of a story, with passion and danger throughout, but there is a wonderfully wicked sense of humor here at work as well. The characters have such vivid personalities, I expected to look up and see them materialize in front of me.

Akane Russo is loyal, brave and determined to do her job: protect Shane Dunne even if does suffer from a delusion that she is his mate. Her seer half has flashes of insight, while her dragon half is determined to resist. As one of The Hob’s infamous Blades, she has no room in her life for romance, especially with someone as irritating and insufferable as Shane Dunne. I loved watching as her attitude went from bored irritation, to curiosity, admiration and finally love. I loved her determination to save Shane, once she accepted that he was her mate, and the fear that she could destroy him with the cure he needed.

Shane Dunne is a talented artist, creating masterpieces from the visions that rule his future. He is determined to claim Akane for his mate, but he also loves to tease and annoy her, just to see her passion erupt. He is keeping secrets, and knows what is coming, but he also knows he can’t change what has to happen. I loved the playful and silly banter Shane used with Akane, and his “aw shucks ma’am” farm boy persona he adopted just to get a rise from his mate.

There are several threats to the Dunne/Blackthorn clan, and Shane is at the center of more than one. The Malmayne clan, or at least the heads of the clan, have pledged allegiance to the Black Court, and have misinterpreted the Prophecy concerning “a child of Dunne”. These threads were brought together neatly, and the immediate danger has been averted.

The secondary characters play a large role in this story, with every family member being integral to stopping the evil from taking hold and creating chaos. But the main thread, the romance between two of the rarest of supernatural beings, true hybrids, is the centerpiece of this book. This is most definitely Shane and Akane’s book, and everything else takes a back seat to the passion and beauty of the union of these two fantastic characters.

I recommend this for those who like intrigue mixed with magic and passion, but I recommend you read the first two books in the series to get the richness of this world and all its inhabitants.

Yours, Unexpectedly by Susan Fox

Yours, Unexpectedly by Susan Fox
Publisher: Keningston Brava
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (192 Pages)
Other: M/F
Ratings: 5 Cherries
Reviewed by Canterbury Bell

The wedding may be off, but the honeymoon is on…

Merilee Fallon has been planning her wedding to Matt Townsend since she was seven, and now the big day is only two days away. But suddenly she has an unexpectedly serious case of cold feet. So she shocks both Matt and herself—and calls off the wedding.

They may not get their happily ever after, but both Merilee and Matt agree they shouldn’t let their non-refundable honeymoon go to waste. So they take the Mexican Riviera cruise—as friends. It’s Merilee’s chance to be adventurous, and maybe even put her newfound freedom to the test. But she’s about to discover that sometimes there’s nothing more arousing than first love—especially on a cruise ship where there are no rules and anything goes…

It is the unexpected that makes the heart beat faster, the desire stir a little longer and the longing drive the emotional experience. It is when the expected becomes the unexpected that lives are changed forever.

Matt and Merilee have been each other’s soul mates since they were seven years old. Now in college and preparing to finally get married, unexpected questions arise and fate throws a curve ball. A chance observation of her sister’s new fiancé pouring his heart out and admitting his true devotion makes Merilee wonder about her relationship with Matt. Is it all too convenient, do they really want the same things, and are they really meant for each other?

Merilee’s doubts about their love and their future cancel their long awaited wedding and sends Matt into a total spin. He has never been without her and she has never known another man. Where do they go from here? Well… there is the non-refundable honeymoon cruise! Making concessions so the other can go, Matt and Merilee both find themselves on a luxury cruise to Mexico agreeing to share a cabin as friends. Okay?

This is the story of two people who are “so right for each other” going through the “so wrong for each other” phase only to discover they really aren’t the people they thought they were. With time and a change of scenery, Merilee and Matt rediscover each other, their wants, their desires, their futures. Merilee is solid, stoic, devoted while Matt simply is in love with Merilee. He wants nothing more in life that to be by her side forever. Her dreams are his dreams until he has time to rethink his dreams.

What they took for granted now becomes a new experience, a new adventure and a new desire emotionally and physically. Their dreams aren’t really what they want but what they settled for, their passion is not what they want but what they learned as young teens and never allowed to change as they became adults.

This is book four in the Wild Ride to Love Series by Susan Fox and it is as good as the very first book. This is startling, sensual, sexy, passionate tale of two lovers finding their way back to each other as new people.

No one writes a love story like Susan Fox; it is gripping, entertaining, intelligent; the dialogue is so real you can hear it in your head. If you have not read the previous books, that is okay, this one stands alone as well but try and get the first three to see the culmination of the lives of four completely different sisters. Don’t miss this -- as with all the others it ends with a smile!

Tempted by the Moon by Morgan Fox

Tempted by the Moon by Morgan Fox
Publisher: Siren Bookstrand
Genre: Contemporary, paranormal
Length: Full Length (193 pages)
Other: M/F, M/F/M, menage, bdsm
Rating: 4 cherries
Reviewed by Dogwood

Newly engaged, Brie Ferguson and Jonah McCarthy submerge themselves in primal temptations, but the constant reminder of Sebastian McCarthy's absence is enough to ruin even the best orgasm.

Distracted by the mating heat, Brie feels a deep longing to be with both her mates, especially her Alpha. Discovering that Sebastian's been infected with the same debilitating virus that turned Mason Levi, a convicted murder and werepanther, into an ultimate killing machine is enough to bring her to her knees.

Brie is tormented with the knowledge that the man she loves could destroy her, but the mating heat is all consuming and leaves her with little choice. Instincts drive her to once again feel the sexual heat and connection she shares with Sebastian and Jonah.

But once she learns that Sebastian holds the answers to her past, can the truth be the missing link into freeing her soul and igniting a passion so tempting Sebastian and Jonah can't resist?

Lawyers by day and werewolves by night, Sebastian and Jonah McCarthy are two sexy brothers who happen to share the same mate, Brie Ferguson. When Brie gets stalked and almost killed by the diseased shape-shifter she brought to trial for conviction of multiple murders, alpha-leader Sebastian will not rest until he discovers what it is about his lovely mate that makes her special and what it is that has infected her stalker.

Even living with one of her delicious mates Jonah, soon the mating heat becomes unbearable for Brie as she misses her other mouth-watering mate Sebastian. When Brie finally has her reunion with Sebastian, she soon discovers that Sebastian is now also infected with the disease of her stalker. Even as Brie is learning her super-natural powers, can she find a way to heal her mate Sebastian and save them all?

This is the second book in the “Moonlight Shifters” series and the conclusion of the adventure between characters Brie, Sebastian and Jonah. Neither of these books stands alone well, and I strongly suggest reading them together.

Morgan Fox has hit on a very exciting series with her books thus far in the “Moonlight Shifters” saga. I was totally engrossed in this book to the point that I had trouble putting it down. The love scenes were extremely hot. I am anxious for the next book in this series to be released as I am now completely hooked.

I discovered more detail in this book as to the type of shifter our villain is. I was anxious to discover the gift that Brie was born with and how it also affects the future of this romance-thriller. The secondary characters were lively and interesting and I am waiting to see if perhaps their love matches will also be revealed in future installments. I feared the infect-able disease and it's possible affects. This clearly made the story exciting and involving. Also the fantasy of having two exciting mates all to yourself? Wow.

I advise you not to "moon" over the fact that you have not found a good werewolf story in awhile, because this book might just be what you're searching for. But remember,what makes this book truly adventurous are the steamy love scenes.

Unbridled and Unbound by Elle Saint James

Unbridled and Unbound by Elle Saint James
Publisher: Siren-BookStrand, Inc.
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (188 pgs)
Other: M/F, M/F/M, Ménage, Anal Play, Voyeurism
Rating 3.5 cherries
Reviewed by Mistletoe

Stella Gilbert, lowly file clerk for a law firm, wants to pay off her secret debt incurred right before her mother died. Her pride won’t allow a man to pay her bills, unlike her mother, who had no problem with a man, any man, paying for everything.

Dominick Hunter and Tyler Wilson want to see to the completion of the newly constructed DRMC headquarters and sexual playground in Ryder, Colorado before moving back to their own property up north. They expect to enjoy their membership even more with the new “Stadium” for their annual live sex shows. But a beautiful, stranded accident victim, found outside the gates of the DRMC property, with excellent cooking skills and a strong curiosity about their unbridled lifestyle makes them reconsider their plans of leaving the state.

When Stella finds herself stranded on an icy road in the middle of the biggest and strongest snowstorm in years, she could never have anticipated the wonderful men that came to her rescue. Old and dear friends, Dominick and Tyler come across Stella and her broken down car and offer her the warmth and safety of their ranch. As soon as Stella finds out what kind of ranch it is, she becomes curious and ready to indulge in a few ideas of her own. The question is, will it all be too much for Stella or has she found the men of her dreams?

Dominick and Tyler are totally different men, from physical appearances to personalities, yet they are great friends that love the same thing: Stella. Both are wonderful men and I would be hard pressed to say one is better than the other. Both men made an impression on this reader.

Although I loved the men, I didn’t really connect with Stella. I can’t say specifically what it was about her that didn't mesh with me. Perhaps it's like when some people become best friends while others stay acquaintances. Stella is like an acquaintance to me. Stella is written as a smart and strong woman determined to make it on her own. Yet she begins to realize she has feelings for the two men and strives to do something about it. The three are wonderful together and it was nice to see them all fight for their love.

Clay, the other man staying at the ranch with Dominick and Tyler, is the one that really made an impression with me. He does a wonderful thing that not only helps Stella but also helps him deal with some of his pain from the past. He is a strong man who fights for those that he cares about and I hope that he gets his story told.

Not only do we get to see the romance between the three main characters but we also get a nice storyline. Stella has a job and bills she must pay and the men have lives as well. The author does a nice job of intertwining their separate lives and their romance.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Craftsman by Georgia Fox

The Craftsman by Georgia Fox
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Length: Short Story (105 pages)
Genre: Historical
Other: M/F, Menage, M/F/M/M, M/F/M, M/M, voyeurism, anal sex
Rating: 5 cherries
Reviewed by Bittersweet

The Conquerors, 3

Raedwulf, son of a Saxon noble, is finally released from William the Conqueror’s prison. Unfortunately, this amnesty is conditional on an arranged marriage, but he just wants to be left in peace with his carpentry. The last thing he needs is a woman forced to bed him out of duty.

Emma is newly widowed. Believed barren, she never expected to marry again and planned to enter a convent. Instead, a fateful mistake sends her to this quiet, brooding man, who spends long hours alone with his woodwork. She’s stunned to learn that “Wulf” is a virgin, especially when she sees the magnificent craftsman’s tool in his breeches.

Before they are parted by the truth, can she teach Wulf to use that splendid, God-given implement with the same skill as he wields those in his workshop?

Or will Emma learn some lessons of her own at the hands of The Craftsman?

Georgia Fox does it again! Having recently read “The Virgin Proxy” I was eagerly awaiting the story of Deorwynn’s brother, Wulf.

The Craftsman is a superb read that stands alone in the Conqueror series. Ms. Fox is a master craftswoman when it comes to descriptions. The tale begins with a vivid depiction of Raedwulf working in his shed, awaiting the dreaded arrival of his bride to be. Soon she arrives and confusion ensues.

I never thought it possible, but I felt sorry for poor 29-year-old virgin, Wulf. My heart went out to him and I was more than willing to teach him a few things myself. However, he soon learns to take command and becomes a bit too primitive and rough for my taste.

Emma on the other hand was surprising. I enjoyed seeing her transformation from a contained, proper, and quiet maiden to a lusty wench. Oh, that wild thunderstorm! I never knew rain could be so arousing.

The only sin that The Crasftman commits is that at times it can come off as more just pure erotica than erotic romance. Ms. Fox draws picture after picture of lustful encounters: from public masturbation to voyeurism (from both a male and female point of view) to male on male, trios, anal play with a specially crafted toy, anal sex… But, love does surge between the characters. It is a sweet love that appears little by little in the small little things and ends happily.

One of the things I particularly loved in this book was the reappearance of Thierry, a character which I already liked from before and which I was glad to get a little more insight about. I’m hoping that Ms. Fox gives him a tale of his own. He definitely deserves it!

The Craftsman by Georgia Fox is a great, very vivid, very exciting read, recommended for any hot night.

Seduced by the Moon by Morgan Fox

Seduced by the Moon by Morgan Fox
Publisher: Siren Bookstrand
Genre: Contemporary, paranormal
Length: Short Story (134 pages)
Other: M/F, M/F/M, menage
Rating: 3.5 cherries
Reviewed by Dogwood

Brie Ferguson, an attorney with a prestigious legal firm in Dallas, quickly finds herself in the protective custody of the gorgeous and possessive McCarthy brothers after a convicted murderer threatens to kill her.

Coming to terms with her sexual attraction for both Sebastian and Jonah McCarthy, she’s unable to resist sating the desires burning inside her. The fierce men weaken her resistance and steal her breath as they set fire to her body in ways she’d only fantasized about.

Now, Sebastian and Jonah must find a way to put an end to a murderer’s threat and uncover the secrets of Brie’s past. Secrets she herself hadn’t even known existed.

Can the McCarthy brothers keep Brie safe from the clutches of the monster stalking after her and convince her that the wild wolves they harbor inside themselves are meant to be her mates—forever?

Sexy and gorgeous hunks, Sebastian and Jonah McCarthy are not only brothers who work together at their own law firm, but they are also werewolves who know that they will someday share the same mate. Sebastian who is alpha of his pack, recognizes that mate in the new attorney who is now working for him, Brie Ferguson. When Jonah persuades Brie to act on her feelings for Sebastian, Brie makes a daring move on him, but with guilt, as she is in love with both brothers. Soon the brothers do reveal that she is suppose to be with both of them and that there is no turning back.

Brie Ferguson is a good attorney. So much so in fact that she has placed criminals in jail while working in the office of the District Attorney; however one of those dangerous murderers escapes and is now determined to go after Brie. When the sweltering hot McCarthy brothers decide to protect their mate, many secrets about the world of shape-shifters come to the surface, including one ancient prophecy that involves the lovely Brie.

Morgan Fox has done a good job of spinning an interesting tale of intrigue as well as erotic romance. I enjoyed her characters and I found myself looking forward to reading her second book to finish the tangled-web of these three interesting characters.

I did find it a bit unusual that you have to read both Seduced by the Moon as well as Tempted by the Moon to fully see what unfolds with these characters' lives, but even so this story was fascinating and held my interest throughout the entire book. Still, it does not stand alone, and I do highly recommend reading the two stories together.

I love that the villain was horrendous! It made the story more exciting. Couple that with smoking hot loving and this story sizzled. I did discover quite a few editing mistakes, but overall I really enjoyed this tale and will be keeping it in my “to-read again in the future” folder.

Need a midnight thrill by the moonlight? Well this book might be right up your alley! Hot, sexy werewolves and their mates...”oh my”!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Talker’s Graduation BY Amy Lane

Talker’s Graduation by Amy Lane
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (66 pgs)
Other: M/M, Anal Play
Rating: 4.5 cherries
Reviewed by Coreopsis

When you get past the basics of survival, what next? Brian Cooper recovered from the attack that almost killed him, and Tate Walker faced down his own demons. Now all that’s left is... each other. Growing up together and growing into their love is everything but easy.

Talker’s eternal optimism and Brian’s quiet faith just might be able to conquer the obstacles, big and small, in their way—as well as overcome the complications of having all their dreams come true.

This is the third installment to this series and Ms. Lane definitely left the best for last. Talker’s Graduation is a perfect title for this tell because it is Talker’s graduation into life, acceptance of himself, and the ever growing love between him and Brian.

Brian is on the mend from the beating he suffered in the previous book and Talker is still dealing with his fear of what happened and the fear of being left all alone. Talker is an optimistic man and does his best to help his lover heal from the trauma his body had gone through. In doing so he brings home a chunk of clay to help with Brian’s recovery. Little did both men know this would open up a door for Brian and their future.

Brian is a quiet character. He loves Talker more than anything and it’s his actions that show Talker how important he is to the other man. Brian is extremely selfless and time and time again he proves it where Talker is concerned. I fell a little more in love with this character when he stood up to his art mentor regarding Talker and his willingness to give up his dream to help Talker accomplish his own.

The story jumps from three years in the past to the present. I personally liked the way the author wrote this story. Past memories helped tell of the road they had to travel to get to their happy ending.

This is a love story at its finest. Over the three books these characters grow and change but never forget where they came from. What didn’t break them only made them stronger. Everyone should have a love story like Talker and Brian. Talker’s Graduation was a delightful read that pulled at my heart strings. Fans of Amy Lane will fall in love with Talker and Brian all over again. This is definitely a must read!

Diamonds in the Sand by Cassandra Pierce

Diamonds in the Sand by Cassandra Pierce
Publisher: Siren-Bookstrand
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (98 Pages)
Other: M/F, Ménage, M/F/M/M/M/M, M/M, Anal Sex
Rating: 4.5 Cherries
Reviewed by Foxglove

Oceanographer Maura Ryan travels to the tropics to meet with her mentor, who claims to have made an amazing new discovery. By the time she gets there, he has vanished…and in his place are five mysterious men who have a strange connection to the sea.

As they help her search for the missing scientist, Daq, Janko, Ivar, Ejan and Tagin introduce Maura to the uninhibited life they enjoy on the island. Before long, they ask her to join them in their balmy paradise, and she is tempted to accept.

However, Maura can’t help wondering about her new friends’ role in Dr. Miller’s disappearance. She has also begun to suspect that they aren’t exactly like other men. Can she respond to their desire for her, wondering if they might not be what they seem? Should she give into what she feels for them, knowing that they might not be human?

Diamonds in the Sand is Cassandra Pierce’s second book featuring her Aquans. I love the lighthearted outlook of these books, filled with passion and humor and hot hunks.

When Dr. Maura Ryan received a message from her former mentor about a fantastic new discovery he had made, she flies to the tropical island where he now lives at his invitation. Upon her arrival, the oceanographer is disappointed to find that Septimus Miller seems to have disappeared from his home without leaving any word for her. In his place are five gorgeous men, each one devastatingly handsome, willing to help her in any way possible. She falls under the spell of the island, and into the arms of Daq, one of the men living in her mentor’s home.

When she finally uncovers the discovery Septimus spoke of, she realizes that these five men are not exactly human, and they all want to keep her there with them. Can she accept what these five men offer her? Will she discover where her mentor has gone to? Can the scientist in her keep the discovery of a lifetime secret from the world?

There is a bit of mystery in this story, with the disappearance of Septimus Miller, but there is lots of heat and action to keep the pace of the book moving along quite nicely. I like the history Ms. Pierce has created for her ancient race of Aquans, and the male/female dynamic reversal is unique here. I love that the women of the Aquan culture are the love them and leave them wanderers, and the men are the family nurturers.

Maura Ryan is a smart young woman, and excited to be invited to see her mentor’s new discovery. She is drawn to the five men who she believes work for Septimus, and I enjoyed watching as she slowly loses her civilized inhibitions and experiences island living and passion to its fullest. I also understood her suspicions as she wonders whether these five men may have done something to cause the absence of her mentor.

Daq, Janko, Ivar, Ejan and Tagin are five extremely hot and sexy male specimens, and they are each unique in their own way. They are also a pod, or group of men, seeking that one woman who can accept them and anchor their family unit. As Aquans, the men need a female to ground them, and they want Maura to be that woman. I loved watching as each found their own place in her heart, and slowly worked on her inhibitions to allow her to be more free.

There are a couple of surprises, too. Meeting the families of the men of the pod is delightful, and the mischief that Daq’s sister incites is great for a laugh or two. And this sister discovers something about her own needs from a mysterious stranger visiting the island as well.

When the truth about Septimus’ absence becomes known, Maura must make her decision: go home and forget what she knows about the Aquans, or stay and live the rest of her life surrounded by five hot men who will worship her and love her with all they have to give. On the way to this decision, there is lots of sexy action by five skilled men to try and convince her to stay.

This is one to read to warm these cooler autumn nights, with a cold drink close at hand.