Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Tears and Laughter

Laura Lee Guhkre has a new excerpt out for her June release SHE’S NO PRINCESS. I look forward to reading this one. Sexy aloof men are always my cup of tea (hence my single state – they’re too aloof and unavailable…). Can’t wait to see the hero lose his composure over a woman. Should be fun! Hope the heroine's worthy of him.

Finished read Lorraine Heath’s PROMISE ME FOREVER. I enjoyed it, but couldn’t help notice similarities between it and THE NOTEBOOK (and having seen the movie, it became almost too apparent how close in plot they were). I loved the book; loved the story and would recommend it to readers young and old alike. I cried while reading it. It is a tearjerker, for certain. I made the mistake of reading the epilogue first and it got me off to a bad start. I cannot stress this enough…it is very very very similar (I don’t want to say IDENTICAL because it’s not true) to THE NOTEBOOK.

Heath is very talented at making you feel her characters’ joys and pains. I was hooked and couldn’t put it down after a couple of chapters. I enjoyed being reintroduced to my favorite characters from past novels. Interesting to know that the happily ever afters of the past were not so easily achieved; Heath dealt a hint of realism that is quite often not even touched upon in romance novels. I was thoroughly appreciative.

I thought the story was deserving of Tom and Lauren. It was sweet and touching. I would give it an A, but the fact that it reminded me so much of THE NOTEBOOK (this and this alone) brought it down to a B+. Do yourself a favor when reading it though…have some Kleenex nearby. You’ll need plenty of it.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Recent Reads and Reviews

LUCIEN'S GAMBLE (BAD BOYS AHOY anthology), Sylvia Day
I had to get this book, after reading about it in Sybil’s blog. I immediately went to the author’s website and was intrigued.
Why you should read it: The story is nothing new - hardened rake falls in love with young innocent who proves to be a little slut in the sack. I enjoyed the tale and grew to love the characters. I’m a sucker for redeemed rakes, the dirtier, the better.
What might bother you: The book was a tad bit historically inaccurate in terms of the heroine’s non ruined state, despite having “slept over” the hero’s gambling establishment about a dozen times (I’m exaggerating but you get the idea). This didn’t bother me much and I was more than willing to turn the other cheek.
Will I read more of Day? YES, YES and YES. Sylvia Day knows how to write and I look forward to reading more of her novels. Gosh, I'm already on her fanlist. What more can you ask for?

LORD PERFECT, Loretta Chase
What I loved:
the straightlaced, stuffy aristocratic hero, Benedict Carsington, who can’t get enough of the heroine, Bathsheba Delucey Wingate, from the wrong side of the tracks. Loved how he was willing to give up everything –his title, his money, his family- for her. Now that’s love.
What I hated: hearing the heroine talk about the Dreadful or Distraught or Diseased Deluceys every five seconds. Ok…I get it; your family sucks. Now get over it, so I can move on and continue reading about the hero turning his back on everything he’s ever known for you. Also, I think Chase spent too much time focusing on the heroine’s daughter and hero’s nephew…yes, they were integral to the plot, but give me a break already. Half the book was dedicated to them. Enough. I wonder what Chase’s motivation was?!?! Do I detect future book for the two in the future? Who knows?
Why I would recommend it: the hero, of course, and the fact that the couple never hid how they felt. I always find Chase’s novels so refreshing. It’s nice not to have to deal with misunderstandings, lack of communication between the lead characters. The dialogue was witty, intelligent, funny, unforgettable.

What I loved: Several things, to be honest
1. Long’s realistic depiction of a couple who slowly falls in love, becoming friends first and then lovers. Finally, a novel in which the two lead characters don’t start bumping uglies within two seconds of meeting each other. What a novel concept!
2. Long’s depiction of the villains, Thaddeus Morley and Caroline Allston. The characters were so real, so multi-faceted. There was no black and white to them; no silly caricatures we so often see in romance novels. I wanted to know more about them. Reading about them didn’t prove boring or tiresome. Quite often, I get so sick of having a sexually tense private moment between the lead characters interrupted by supporting characters. Here, I didn’t fail that way. Not even close. As a matter of fact, I’m glad Long left their fates slightly unresolved. I look forward to hearing more about them.
3. John Carr
4. The heroine’s transformation from spoiled little rich girl you just want to maim to strong mature woman. I wanted to smack at first. I really did.
5. The hero and his quirks. Who ever heard of a hero obsessed with voles and nature? This touch of quirkiness only made him more endearing and human.
What might bother you: the fact that they don’t bump uglies ASAP might turn some off. I know initially I thought WHEN THE HECK ARE THEY GOING TO DO IT? The more I read, the more I was glad they didn’t consummate ‘til the end. It wouldn’t have made sense otherwise.
Long’s future as a romance novelist: many compare her to some of the greats of romance literature and I can see why. This lady’s got it and I look forward to reading more of her novels.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Kickball: The Search for Derek Craven

Ok...don't make fun of me, but I think I might join a kickball team. Yeah, kickball. I never learned to play softball and I suck at volleyball and soccer, so I thought I would try kickball. I was pretty good at it in middle school; that was a while ago, but it's gotta be like riding a bike, right? How can you forget that stuff?

The summer is coming up (although summer in SF is more like winter) and I want to do something different. Also, I'm eager to meet more people. All I do is work these days and I'm bored to death. If someone had told me a decade ago that today I would be working, working and working all the time, I would have told them to F-off. Back then, I had such dreams of making a difference, exploring the world, having fun. I know work is a necessity. I have to work to make money so I can pay my student loans, rent and food, BUT lately work has become everything and I don't like it.

So...kickball it is. I'm going to ask a friend of mine to join me...can't hurt. Hey...maybe I'll even meet my own Derek Craven (doubt it...yeah, optimism is my thing...can't you tell?).

Saturday, March 25, 2006

I Cheated

Ok...a couple of months ago I decided to buy books only at the beginning of each month. I didn't want it to come to that, but I had to save money somehow. I gave myself a budget (my book buying was out of control) and prepared myself for some major savings. Well, today I don't know what came over me...maybe the fact that several bookstores are now selling several new releases or maybe the fact that Kristie posted a list of her favorites on her website (yeah, I'll blame it on her...LOL)...well, today I drove down to my favorite UBS and then to the WALMART near my parents' house and proceeded to buy 11 books. Yes, I kid you not. Every now and then I visit my parents and little sister. I tell myself it's because I miss them and want to spend some time with them. Honestly, I'm starting to think I visit only so that I can go to Walmart and the UBS near them. I'm sick, deranged, twisted, ill very very happy I now own 11 more books. What is wrong with me? I've posted about this before. This disease is eating me and my bank account up alive. I don't even read the books. I buy them, bring them home to my apartment and then throw them in my TBR trunk.

I'm pleased with myself BUT in true ROMANCELOVER nature (or should I say DUMBASS?), I went ahead and read the last paragraph of one of the books I bought and nearly had a conniption! I'm sure I'll write about it once I read the book.

I'm honored to present the new members of my TBR family:

1. Candice Proctor, THE BEQUEST (recommended by Kristie)
2. Elizabeth Boyle, BRAZEN TEMPTRESS (I own the others..been looking for this one for ages. The review isn't too good, but I can't leave a series incomplete)
3. Shirley Karr, WHAT AN EARL WANTS (for those I need FLUFF days)
4. Nicola Cornick, WAYWARD WIDOW (heroine was a major BEEATCH in the last book)
5. Judith McNaught, A KINGDOM OF DREAMS
6. Judith McNaught, UNTIL YOU
7. Judith McNaught, ONCE AND ALWAYS
8. Gayle Callen, HIS SCANDAL
9. Lorraine Heath, PROMISE ME FOREVER (here's to hoping she can redeem herself after her last stinker)
10. Liz Carlyle, THREE LITTLE SECRETS (I waited for to get this one before I even began the glad I did...can't wait to read)
11.Georgina Gentry, TO TEASE A TEXAN

I also need need need to re-read IN COLD BLOOD by Capote. I read it in high school. After watching CAPOTE the other night, I'm itching to read the masterpiece one more time (as well as learn as much about Truman Capote as possible).

Friday, March 24, 2006

So Confused

Amazon has information on a Lisa Kleypas/Kay Hooper novel entitled GIFTS OF LOVE out in November 2006. Is this the contemporary we've all been hearing about? No clue. Kleypas mentioned her contemporary would be published by St. Martins, NOT AVON and this one's an AVON book. Hmmm...I am so confused. Anyone have any info?

No, Thanks!

Do women actually find Fabio attractive? He's graced the covers of several romance novels, but really...does he turn anyone on here? Oral B is having a WIN A DATE WITH FABIO contest. I don't know about that. Personally, he makes me ill.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

This Sh-t is Bananas

Covers were released for two upcoming books. Check them out. I like Kleypas's cover, but D'Alessandro's? Eek! What the hell? I'm definitely going to have to invest in book covers now. This shit is ridiculous!

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

New Avon Author

Sophie Jordan is a new Avon author. Check out her book coming out August 2006. Doesn't sound too original, but I'm willing to try it. The cover is cheesy, typically Avon. Kristie, any comments?

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

In the Thrill of the Night

A couple of weeks ago, I went to the book signing for Hern’s IN THE THRILL OF THE NIGHT and Julie Anne Long’s BEAUTY AND THE SPY. I had been looking forward to my first book signing for weeks and it was truly a pleasure to meet these two women. Pictures to come.

I went home and immediately had to begin reading the books. My first was Hern’s. I enjoyed it tremendously, although at first I had a hard time telling some of the characters apart.

When I first started reading IN THE THRILL OF THE NIGHT, I was confused. Too many characters thrown together in the first chapter, too many discussions, too many women with long names, long titles. I couldn't keep it all straight in my head. Who was who? What was going on? Who was talking? It took me a bit. I have to admit to feeling slightly stupid; I had to take notes. I knew the stage was being set for a great series and I wanted to be patient throughout it all. When Hern writes well, she writes well, as ONCE A GENTLEMAN so clearly indicates. Again, Hern did not disappoint. The confusion was only temporary and I soon became so engrossed in the romance, I almost set my apartment on fire (dinner on stove while reading…NOT A GOOD IDEA!!!).

Hern's friends to lovers storyline worked and I found myself delighted and giddy at the end of it. Marianne Nesbitt is 29 years old and part of an elite group of women, all widows who are determined not to be forced into marriage and lose their financial independence.

Meet the rest of the widows:
  • Grace Marlowe, widow of a vicar. Long hair, innocent and slightly prudish.
  • Beatrice, Lady Somerfield. Striking redhead in her mid-thirties who is acting as chaperon for her niece. She has two daughters of her own.
  • Wilhemina "Wilma", Duchess of Hertford. Age unknown, a real vixen in her youth. Modest origins.
  • Penelope, Lady Gosforth. Thirty years of age, horny as hell, with cropped locks.

The women each make a pact, urged by Penelope, to find lovers. Marianne enlists the help of one of her husband’s friends, Adam Casenove. Adam is troubled by Marianne’s desire to find a lover and guiltily (because of his friendship with her late husband) wishes he could be the one. Unfortunately, he is engaged and knows it to be impossible. Marianne is also bothered by Adam’s engagement to a woman she considers nothing but a giggling ninny. The two want each other so badly. It’s fun reading them come to terms with their attraction. The tension is so thick you can cut it with a knife. Marvelous! Everything, from Adam’s attempts to steer undeserving potential lovers away from Marianne to the way he looks at her…WOW. Everything about their relationship made me warm and fuzzy. The way Adam would simply look on as she flirted with a potential lover, his jealousy, stares, everything… I loved it!!!

I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I enjoyed meeting the widows and understanding their motives behind wanting to remained both unmarried and well-bedded. One of the widows irked be a bit though. Penelope and her talk of lovers and sex really got to me and I really thought she was all talk. I still look forward to reading her story though. There’s something about her. She’s definitely intriguing and I’m curious to know whether indeed she is as openly sexual as she appears. Also, I do hope we get to meet the man who reintroduced her to the joys of sex…a certain Alistair. So, wait…maybe I’m not too irritated by her. I certainly think her story will be an interesting one.

I was very smitten with Lord Rochdale, Adam’s friend. I love rakes and he’s definitely one. I hope the prudish Grace will “grace” his bed in future novels. One can only hope. Would be a challenge for him and she definitely needs someone who will open her up a bit (oh, gosh…no pun intended really).

I look forward to reading the rest of the widows’ stories. I cannot wait to get to know the rest of these fine ladies. Here’s to you, Candice. Avon will be sorry you left them!!!

Monday, March 20, 2006

Another Day in the Life of...

Blogger has been affecting everyone and I think I'm going to follow Kristie's lead and not post anything of significance, like a review, for a day or two. The weekend is over and what a weekend it was. I did a lot of exploring the nooks and crannies of San Francisco. Walked across the Golden Gate Bridge (which I find one of the most relaxing experiences) and walked most of Ocean Beach. On Sunday, I stumbled upon a beach which was incredible, amazing. Sand, warmth, waves crashing....naked men? WHHHHHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT? In all of my exploring, I stumbled upon a nude beach. I didn't know what to I join them? Should I turn the other way? I tried not to look, but sometimes it just proved impossible. I walked a little more, breathed in the cool salty air and left. What a day!

Back home, I finished Julie Anne Long's BEAUTY AND THE SPY, which I intend to review after Hern's IN THE THRILL OF THE NIGHT. I still have to do my taxes. Still haven't won the lottery I've resorted to playing each Friday in the hopes of winning and quitting my job. I spoke to a friend of mine who was appalled at the 3% raise almost as much as I was. Bought BAD BOYS AHOY by Sylvia Day; had a 30% Borders Reward discount coupon which I decided to use. I look forward to reading it. I'm taking a day off working out. I walked a total of 10 hours over the weekend. I think I just overdo it sometimes. I'm physically exhausted and have a cramp in my leg that just won't go away. Any recommendations for getting rid of it?

My body is telling me to go home right now and read the book. Does anyone ever just get giddy from the thought of a book awaiting them at home. It's a little like going to a party; you know you're going to meet some interesting people and you can't wait. Ok...I guess I need to get back to work now. Gotta earn next year's 3%, right?

Friday, March 17, 2006

What the heck?

Blogger needs to get it together. It's giving me a heart attack. I keep on thinking I deleted all of my posts. I know I'm not the only one who feels this way!!!

Review Coming Soon

Definitely a thrill...

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Romance Book Week

Got this from Keishon...I answered it pretty quickly because I'm at work.

1. Name your all-time favourite male character. Derek Craven DREAMING OF YOU - Kleypas;Sebastian, Lord St. Vincent – DEVIL IN WINTER - Kleypas; Lord St. Aubyn “SAINT” - LONDON’S PERFECT SCOUNDREL – Enoch.
I love heroes who are tough, slightly arrogant, a bit tortured, maybe a little jealous. Heroes who do whatever it takes for their heroine. I enjoyed reading about Craven because he was so against love, so mighty and proud and then he just…fell like a ton of bricks for Sara Fielding. Derek, like Sebastian and Saint, is the kind of man you can trust to protect the heroine no matter what the circumstance. I guess I like protectors.
I get a fuzzy feeling when I know the story is right. My stomach does a few flips and I'm overcome with intense happiness. That's when I know I'm reading a winner. I felt that way reading these novels. Gosh, I love other heroes also...the Carsington brother from Mr. IMPOSSIBLE is a good one...gosh, do I really have to narrow it done. Impossible!!!

2. What is your favourite setting? Historical / Contemporary or otherwise. Why? What draws you in? I love historicals set in the Regency period or Victorian age. Each time I read one, I feel like I’ve stepped off a time machine; it’s the most wondrous feeling. My fascination with Great Britain first began with a Kleypas novel not too long ago. I find that particular era so elegant and polished; I find it easier to lose myself in this period.

3. What trait in a hero can you not abide? Heroes need to be slightly alpha for me to enjoy them. No beta heroes for me; they don’t necessarily have to be completely arrogant or dominating and jealous, but I would like to feel like they could at least protect the heroine from a mouse. I don’t like men who are too focused on clothing and their own appearance…dandies, if you will. A perfect example is the hero from Loretta Chase’s MISS WONDERFUL. What a fop! Couldn’t stand him! This is my least favorite Chase book.

4. Who's your favourite heroine of all time? This is really difficult....two: Lauren from Balogh’s A SUMMER TO REMEMBER and the heroine (sorry, I’m at work) from Mary Jo Putney’s THE RAKE. I didn’t particularly like Lauren the first time I read Balogh’s book. I hated her, to be honest. I loved her the second time around. She’s one of those heroines I could actually relate to. Her search for that one last adventure and her attachment to the hero made my heart melt. She’s strong, intelligent, kind and human.
Putney’s heroine is perfect; she’s another strong one. Her attempts to help her hero in his fight against alcoholism really touched me. I actually admired her and admiration, especially lately, is not something I feel quite often for romance heroines. She could have given up and left him but she stuck it through. She loved him for that man that he was and accepted him. Wow…nice to read about a heroine who won’t run away at the first signs of trouble.

5. What is your favourite genre? Have you analyzed why it is your favourite? Do you care? Historical romance, historical biographies. I love history and I love learning about historical figures. Like Keishon, I love romance novels that will actually mention a historical figures. I do like references to Waterloo, Queen Victoria, the colonies, etc…depending on when the romance is set. The romance factor is a guilty pleasure of mine; why wouldn’t I want to read a romance? They’re fun, touching, sexy…what’s not to like???

6. What genre do you dislike the most? What is it that grates? Science Fiction. I don’t know why…I tried reading one before but just wasn’t interested.

7. If you have ever read books from the genre you don't like is there at least one book from that genre that you could recommend? n/a

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Never Been Tagged

This whole tagging business is a foreign concept to me. I've never been tagged and I have no idea how I would go about tagging another blogger. Do I just post a comment saying TAG? Do I write up a blog and mention that I'd like certain bloggers to respond? No clue. In any case, I took this from Keishon's site, who took it from Renee. Thought I would have some fun with it. I've been in the dumps lately, so anything to cheer me up, right?

Four Jobs You Have Had In Your Life
1. Hello Kitty (literally I worked at a Hello Kitty Store in high school and they made me dress up in a huge get up with no insulation...I was the Mickey Mouse of Sunvalley Mall - torture!)
2. Receptionist/Gopher/Servant/Coffee Slave
3. Lease Consultant (current)
4. Supply Inventory Clerk (in much fun....did zilch!)

Four Movies You Would Watch over and over
1. Never Been Kissed
2. Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
3. Pride and Prejudice (new and old miniseries)
4. Persuasion

Four Places You Have Lived
1. Italy (from ages 12-17)
2. Los Angeles, CA
3. New York
4. Arlington, VA
Currently living in San Francisco, CA

Four TV shows you Love to Watch
1. How I Met Your Mother
2. Real World Key West
3. The Apprentice
4. The Biggest Loser
I love reality TV!!!

Four Places You Have Been On Vacation
1. Italy (Siena, Florence, Rome, Venice, Naples, Pompei, etc)
2. Las Vegas, NV
3. San Diego, CA
4. my bed
I'm hoping to go to England this year...keeping my fingers crossed.

Four Websites You Visit Daily
1. My romance blogs
2. popsugar
3. crooksandliars
4. msnbc

Four Favorite Foods
1. Lasagna
2. Burrito
3. Anything Ethiopian
4. Tofu

Four Places You Rather Be Right Now
1. Europe
2. Home in bed
3. Africa
4. Hiking anywhere

Four Friends You are Tagging that you think will respond
No one...I'm the only one who didn't get tagged with this.


Out October 2006. Check out the excerpt. Guy on the cover looks demonic...hmmm. He's ready to pounce. AFTER MIDNIGHT got me turned on to vampires.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Pet Peeves

1. Heroes who don't tell a heroine to fuck off after she runs away after getting knocked up, determined to raise the child on her own because of some asinine misunderstanding.

2. Romance novels centered around a big misunderstanding...anyone ever hear of a little thing called COMMUNICATION?

3. Stephanie Laurens' novels

4. The word "thou" used in romance novels. Sorry, I just can't get used to it, even if it may be historically accurate. I recently opened up Kathryn Caskie's RULES OF ENGAGEMENT and put it away when I noticed the hero using the word.

5. People who use the phrase "it's like bringing a horse to water." Err..NO! It fucking isn't! Not even close!

6. Sex marathons and no storyline (if I wanted porn, I'd rent it).

7. Dumb fuck heroines - I generally want the hero to do them severe bodily harm!

8. #16 font and 280 pages for $7.99. Generally, this is a courtesy afforded us by AVON. JERKS!

9. Working your ass off all year only to get a 3% raise...thanks ASSHOLES!

Ok...I had to vent a little and amuse myself at the same time. I'm irritated beyond belief and want to get the fuck out of here. I'm at work and taking a quick breather! Number 9 is the reason for my ire...well, that and the fact that I am STILL PMSing!!! When will it end!?!? How can employers expect you to be fired up about your job when they choose to fuck you up the ass during review time. What's crazy is that my review was good...apparently low raises are the norm at financial institutions. Whatever! I have bills to pay. I didn't go through two decades of schooling and sacrifices to get paid shit.

Right now I just want to go home, get on the couch and start reading Julie Anne Long's BEAUTY AND THE SPY. I got it on Saturday at her book signing in San Francisco. Met Candice Hern, too. More on that to come.

Monday, March 13, 2006

I Am the King of Wishful Thinking

Anyone remember the GO WEST classic from the early 90s, KING OF WISHFUL THINKING? You know…the catchy tune from the hit PRETTY WOMAN? Why is it that romance heroes think they can get over a heroine and get on with their lives? It’s pointless. They’ll leave the continent, go off to India or Jamaica or wherever and then come back for five minutes and realize they never stopped loving the heroine. Of course they fight it all the way. They’ll treat the heroine like pure shit, verbally assault her, maybe even force her to pretend they’re in love to punish her for dumping him years earlier, but all the while they’re in heat for her, desperately and hopelessly devoted to them. Why is it that we think all of this is cute when we read it or watch it on TV, but if, God-forbid, we are greeted with the same sort of circumstance (a boyfriend who can’t get over us, a friend’s man who will not let go) we are all of a sudden ready to call the cops?

A few years ago, I broke up with a guy who ½ hour later begged me to take him back…yes, begged me. It was most distressing. I felt sorry for him because he looked like he was going to cry. We were in college and perhaps he was feeling lonely. I was disgusted by the sight of him, almost down on his knees…argh! I didn’t love him; maybe that’s why I was so turned off by his pathetic gesture. Perhaps it would have been different if I had felt an ounce of emotion for him. Perhaps, I wouldn’t have wanted to throw a bucket of ice cold water on him and slap the shit out of him…perhaps.

Today, when I read about the same scenario, I awwwwwww myself to death for hours. What a man…he loves her so much. Wah wah wah wah wah… Give him a chance…blah blah blah. What is it about romances and women? Why aren’t we…or maybe…why am I not as understanding towards real everyday men as I am towards Lord Something or Other? Then again, why aren’t real men as sexy as Lord Something or Other? Hmmm…

Friday, March 10, 2006


DEVIL IN WINTER was initially scheduled to be released in late 2005. Outrage and near hysteria sparked when fans were informed the long anticipated novel was being postponed by AVON and being released in March 2006 (honestly, I could go on forever about these fuckers and their tactics, but I’ll spare you…for now). I'm going to be honest I didn't think I would make it. Yes, it wasn't that much longer a wait, but I wanted to read the love story between a wallflower and the rakish and amoral Sebastian from the moment Lisa Kleypas released a brief preview on her website months earlier. Kleypas's book had been written and given a cover months before and to have to wait frustrated me beyond belief. I made my sentiments on AVON known. Of course, there were those who told me to chill out (jerks!) and then others who felt the same way, the same inexplicable need to discover Sebastian and Evie's effect on him.

We waited, we sulked, we whined and drove anyone who would listen (or read) insane with our continuous HOW COULD AVON DO THIS? rants and finally on March 2006 the day we had long waited for arrived (although I have to be honest I did manage to get an ARC thanks to excessive prayers).

I loved DEVIL IN WINTER. Sometimes there's a fear in the reader that a long anticipated book might be spoiled by overused plots, obnoxious heroines, misunderstandings, lack of chemistry. This was not the case with DIW. The book excelled on so many levels. I sometimes think I'm biased in regards to Lisa Kleypas. I love her writing; her characters always come alive and jump off the page. She's the creator of Derek Craven, one of the sexiest heroes ever to grace the pages of a romance novel. However, as many other reviews of the novel show, bias in the case of this book is not tainting my vision in the slightest. The novel is a stellar depiction of the redemption of Sebastian, Lord St. Vincent, at the hands of the least likely of women, Evangeline "Eve" Jennet, daughter of the notorious Ivo Jenner and Wallflower.

Kleypas’s novel begins on a humorous note:

As Sebastian, Lord St. Vincent, stared at the young woman who had just barged her way into his London residence, it occurred to him that he might have tried to abduct the wrong heiress last week at Stony Cross Park.

After attempting to kidnap the heroine of the last Kleypas novel, Lillian Bowman, and being thereafter pummeled to a pulp by the hero, Lord Westcliff, Sebastian is at home, sitting in his study. He is desperate for money, the son of a man who has nearly depleted the family fortune. Evie Jenner is the daughter of Ivo Jenner, one time rival of Derek Craven and former boxer; her father is dying and she is in need of immediate protection before her relatives force her to marry her cousin. Evie appears before Sebastian and suggests a solution to both their problems: marriage to her. The move is entirely unexpected and seemingly out of character for a wallflower remembered more for her stammer than for being a conversationalist. Sebastian accepts and discovers himself to be attracted to the girl and surprised he never noticed her before.

From then on, DEVIL IN WINTER moves strongly, with its intense and deceptively strong characters, its subtle references to past heroes, its lack of absurd misunderstandings. It manages to capture and hold the reader glued to its pages from beginning to end.

The characters are absolutely delicious with the long awaited St. Vincent leading the pack as one of Kleypas’s finest heroes. Modeled after Derek Craven, St. Vincent warms our heart as he takes care of Evie, protects and loves her. His sometimes bossy, demanding and jealous nature, for one who loves this particular brand of hero, is exciting as hell. He is perfect for Evie, headstrong, stubborn, intelligent and beautiful.

My only regret in reading the novel is that I’m not the recipient of the hero’s affections.

The reader becomes caught up in their lives and is greeted by old characters (Ivo Jenner, memories of Derek Craven) and new hero-potential ones (Cam Rohan). I cannot say enough about the book. It was well worth the wait.

I recommend this book to all; if you haven’t purchased it yet, get thee to BORDERS now!!!

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Just One of Those Days

I'm torn...torn between a career I would more than likely be amazing in and one that I hate but that would make me the most money. Has anyone ever been thus torn? Wait...did I just sound like a romance heroine or what??? Hee...hee...hee.

I've been out of the loop lately, not really going on any blog sites or even blogging anything significant. My last blog was just a picture and a brief link (as you can see for yourself below)...BOOOOOOOOOOOOORING!

I'm in a funk, if you will...hoping to get out of it soon. Going to Candice Hern's book signing on Saturday. Very excited about it.

With the exception of DEVIL IN WINTER, which I reread in order to review (coming soon), I haven't read any book worth a mention. Betina Krahn's THE LAST BACHELOR was good. Not incredible, but good and I enjoyed reading it...but...most books lately have been disappointments. I think I might be ready to go back to Mary Balogh. Her stories are so deep and intense and thought provoking. She's just what I need to get me out of my I'M SICK OF MORONIC ROMANCES phase. I know it's the types of romances I choose; I have been picking a lot of fluffy ones lately, romances that leave me with a warm, yet very brief, fuzzy feeling. I need more. I'm reading a lot of the same storylines and I'm sick of them. Authors seem to have lost all sense of originality...a heroine who's forced to sell herself to the hero because her brother gambled everything away AGAIN??? Heroines mistaken for whores? AGAIN?

ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRHHHH!!! Ladies, like AVID READER, I'm PMSing, as well...thanks for letting me vent.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006


Lisa Kleypas takes time to talk about SCANDAL IN SPRING, Daisy's story, out in August. Can't wait!!!

Monday, March 06, 2006

Butternut Squash

There have been a great many movies inspired by Jane Austen's works, but what about romance novels?

Anyone catch the Oscars last night? Keira Knightley looked incredible. I wish I were her.

And Michelle Williams? Gosh, she looked like a plate of butternut squash! Blaugh...

Currently, I am: 1) reading Krahn's THE LAST BACHELOR and 2) writing up a review for DEVIL IN WINTER.

You know "it's hard out there for a pimp."

Friday, March 03, 2006


  • AAR has a review up for NEVER SEDUCE A SCOUNDREL. I feel ill. I don't know what to think. I already own it, so I might as well read it. I hope I enjoy it, despite what the reviewer says. I would hate to diss a book by Sabrina. I loved her PRINCE series.

  • My DEVIL IN WINTER review is coming soon. I'm still writing it. I want to do the book justice. An amazing book deserves an equally amazing review. Read it if you haven't already!!!

  • I am determined to get over my aversion to medieval romances. THE WEDDING is next on my list of books to overcome and conquer. Any other recommendations? I feel like I'm missing out on so many good books. Why don't I like medievals?

  • Quick question: what kind of heroes do you enjoy? Any similarities to the men you date, are married to, engaged to, etc? I love jealous possessive strong funny heroes. I can't stand jealous guys (well, a little bit is ok) a matter of fact, I always get stuck with wimpy assholes who expect me to make all the decisions (hence the reason I'm single. I won't settle anymore). Also, the behavior some of these heroes engage in is borderline stalkerish...why do we love it so much on paper? I wonder what that says about us...any thoughts?

Thursday, March 02, 2006

New Author Discovery

Has anyone ever read anything by Jackie Ivie? This book sounds hot. Guy on the cover's not too bad either.

AAR reviews it.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006


What I'm about to say will upset and possibly infuriate some Julie Garwood fans. I cannot hold back. I'm sorry but I didn't like THE BRIDE. It was good, I guess. I wouldn't call it the worst book I've ever read. It clearly isn't a bad book. However, the love story didn't grab my heart strings; the hero didn't make my heart sing and the heroine was adorable, but not my cup of tea.

Why didn't I like THE BRIDE? The book garners praise after praise; its reviews are incredible. It is considered by most one of Garwood's best novels. I really believe the medieval setting has something to do with it. I don't care for it much. I don't know what it is. Maybe it's the fact that most didn't have privacy at that time; bathrooms didn't really exist and everything was anything but romantic. I know I know...I should probably just forget about that and enjoy the book, but I can't.

The whole Scottish clan talk and everyone declaring war for no reason and what not also grated on my nerves. I was bored by the quick fights taking place,by the fact that the heroine caused most of them and even by her healing abilities. A lot of it seemed predictable - the fact that the heroine would one day be loved and respected by her husband's Scottish kin (she is English) was obvious. I was annoyed by Mary, Jamie's sister; irritated by Jamie who took charge of everything.

I couldn't get close to the hero; he was strong and intelligent and he had a sense of humor but, somehow, I found him lacking. I did enjoy the scenes when he was wearing a kilt and showing off his hot muscular thighs (I enjoyed that a lot).

The big murder mystery was well written. I must admit I was surprised by the outcome. Normally I am able to guess the murderer and villain from the beginning. Garwood left me wondering until the last page.

The sex was hot, sweaty and...HOT! Again, I couldn't get over the fact that everyone could hear them have sex. That ruined it for me a little. I guess I wanted them to be surrounded by silk and satin (unrealistic, I know, but this is a frickin' romance novel).

The good sex and mystery weren't enough for me. A lot of the concepts were too archaic for my tastes; the heroine's immediate acceptance of her husband's dead wife's daughter for one didn't impress me as much as it probably should have. I never quite developed any affection for the characters and became easily irked by their every action.

I feel guilty for feeling this way; I can only hope that my experience with THE WEDDING will be different.


AAR has reviewed DEVIL IN WINTER and LORD PERFECT. I'm not surprised by them at all. DEVIL is incredible and Loretta Chase is an auto buy for me.

My review of DIW to come later this week...