Review: Blood Kiss by J.R. Ward

Monday, November 30, 2015

Blood Kiss by J.R. Ward
Series: Black Dagger Legacy, Book 1
Publisher: Signet
Genre: Paranormal Romance Blood Kiss Cover
ISBN: 9780451475329
Release Date: December 1, 2015
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N
J.R. Ward Reading Order

Paradise, blooded daughter of the king’s First Advisor, is ready to break free from the restrictive life of an aristocratic female. Her strategy? Join the Black Dagger Brotherhood’s training center program and learn to fight for herself, think for herself…be herself. It’s a good plan, until everything goes wrong. The schooling is unfathomably difficult, the other recruits feel more like enemies than allies, and it’s very clear that the Brother in charge, Butch O’Neal, a.k.a. the Dhestroyer, is having serious problems in his own life.

And that’s before she falls in love with a fellow classmate. Craeg, a common civilian, is nothing her father would ever want for her, but everything she could ask for in a male. As an act of violence threatens to tear apart the entire program, and the erotic pull between them grows irresistible, Paradise is tested in ways she never anticipated--and left wondering whether she’s strong enough to claim her own power...on the field, and off.

Blood Kiss rocks! J.R. Ward’s first Black Dagger Legacy book is sexy, fun, exciting, utterly addictive, and totally kickass. It’s also a tightly-written, character-centric paranormal romance that is unquestionably my favorite Black Dagger Brotherhood-verse story since Lover Revealed.

As the daughter of the king’s First Advisor and a member of one of the Founding Families, Paradise is at the near top of the vampire aristocracy food chain. But she wants more than the life the glymera would have for her. Now she has her chance. The Brothers are recruiting for their training program and Paradise is seizing the chance to learn to fight, to be a soldier, to break free from the box society would put her in and become her own person. Just making the cut to get into the Brothers’ training program is harder and more terrifying than she could have imagined, but Paradise has an inner strength none can match, which is why I loved her. Paradise wasn’t born or raised to be a warrior, but she’s got grit, heart, intelligence, and a determination not to fail that I admired. Paradise isn’t perfect – that would be boring – but she has that perfect mix of kindness, strength (physical and emotional), and guts that make her an awesome heroine. Even when she’s out of her element, or thrown for a loop, Paradise doesn’t quit. And her classmate Craeg definitely throws her for a loop…

Craeg is a civilian vampire with a chip on his shoulder. His family was murdered during the raids, so he has nothing but the Brothers’ training program to work for and he is all business. Except Paradise is throwing him off his game, threatening to be a distraction he can’t afford and could never have anyway. Craeg is as easy to love as Paradise is. He’s a soldier to his core, but he carries internal scars and a heavy burden of anger in the wake of his family’s murders. He doesn’t want to care about his classmates, but it’s clear he does. And he definitely doesn’t want to notice Paradise, but everyone knows what happens when two vampires are destined to be together. Their chemistry is electric right from the start and their romance is by turns fiery, sweet, and sexy as hell. Every up and down, every time these two are on the page, you can’t stop reading and I loved it.

Paradise and Craeg are unique, fully drawn characters in their own right, but if I had to draw comparisons to the original BDB series couples I’d say they are most like Marissa and Butch. It’s fitting, then, that the second storyline of Blood Kiss involves those two. Happily ever afters aren’t easy, even for a couple as in love as Butch and Marissa. It’s no spoiler to say that Butch puts Marissa on a pedestal – he always has. And though both readers and Marissa know that Butch admires, respects, and loves her strength and intelligence, by placing her in a defined category he limits their relationship. It’s natural Marissa would grow frustrated with this and with his unwillingness to talk about his life before he entered the Brothers’ world. I absolutely love that the issues Butch and Marissa face are ones that seem like a natural progression for their characters; it’s a fitting and extremely satisfying follow-up to their story in Lover Revealed.

Blood Kiss is the first book in the Black Dagger Legacy series and it’ll leave you hungry for more. Paradise and Craeg’s classmates are intriguing (I especially can’t wait to learn more about Novo) and will have me grabbing future books as soon as they’re released. The concentrated focus on the four main characters rather than worldbuilding gives the book a different feel from the later Black Dagger Brotherhood books and also helps to make this new series stand on its own. You don’t have to be current on the original series to enjoy Blood Kiss, but you should probably at least have a familiarity with the Brothers’ world before diving in (I recommend at least having read the first four BDB books, Dark Lover, Lover Eternal, Lover Awakened, and Lover Revealed).

If I talk more about the characters than the plot of Blood Kiss, it’s because (1) the characters are fantastic and (2) the story is one best uncovered on its own. Ms. Ward includes twists, turns, connections, and revelations that are far too spoiler-ish to talk about. Suffice it to say you’re in for a treat. Between the training program, romance, mystery, danger, and glimpses of some beloved characters, the book is a fast-paced page-turner. Just don’t start it late at night or you’ll be up reading into the wee hours of the morning.

It’s been more than ten years since I entered the world of the Black Dagger Brotherhood and Blood Kiss reminded me why I first fell in love with Ms. Ward’s writing. Her world envelops you, the characters grab your heart, and the story is one you’ll finish and love so much you’ll want to dive right back in again. I cannot recommend Blood Kiss highly enough and I am more excited than ever to see what Ms. Ward has in store for the recruits, the Brothers, and their shellans.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Entangled: Scandalous New Releases

Get your highlander fix, follow the search for missing family heirlooms and meet mysterious Russian royalty in this month's new Scandalous releases.

On sale today!

The Highlander's Accidental Marriage by Callie Hutton

About the book:

Scotland, 1817

The Duke of Manchester’s sister, Lady Sarah Lacey, always abides by the rules of etiquette. Fate, however, has no such confines. On a journey to the Scottish Highlands, Lady Sarah is set upon by misfortune-leaving her without carriage or chaperone, and left to the mercy of a kind and handsome gentleman. Whom (in order to secure a room at an inn) she announces is her husband.

When she proclaims they’re married in public, Professor Braeden McKinnon can’t bring himself to correct the lovely Lady Sarah. After all, her reputation would be ruined. Nor can he tell her that her proclamation is not only legally binding in Scotland, but sharing a room is considered to be an act of consummation…

Now they are bound together until death do they part-even if Sarah has no intention of becoming anyman’s wife.

Find it online:

The Royal Conquest by Stacy Reid

About the book:

After being cruelly jilted by a lord who claimed to adore her, Miss Payton Peppiwell swore her future husband would be as ordinary as she. Now if only her family would listen to her. Then she meets Mikhail Konstantinovich, an untitled horse breeder, in a highly improper and scandalous encounter. Never had Payton expected to be so attracted to the dark, intriguing man, who seduces her to recklessness with a mere stare.

Mikhail abhors anything to do with intimacy. Yet Miss Peppiwell stirs hunger and a need long forgotten in him. But Mikhail has a dark past—one that means his lust must be sated in a way entirely unsuitable for a lady. But his biggest secret will be the hardest for Payton to overcome: Mikhail is not only titled, he’s a prince…

Find it online:

How to Bewitch an Earl by Ally Broadfield

About the book:

Edward Adair, heir to the Duke of Boulstridge, is more interested in finding a missing family heirloom than a wife. But when his parents issue an ultimatum – marry or lose your allowance – he reluctantly agrees to attend a house party to find a bride. Instead, he discovers attractive but infuriating Miss Isabella Winthrop in his library, reading the private family journal that holds clues to the location of the heirloom.

Though Isabella finds Edward haughty and arrogant, she offers to take him to the next clue mentioned in the journal if he will pay her, which will enable her to help her brother restore his estate. Edward counters with an offer of an even larger payment…if she agrees to masquerade as his betrothed to deter the other ladies until the house party ends.

As they work together to solve the mystery their mutual attraction grows, but just when they begin to think they should make their engagement real, a secret is revealed that could destroy everything.

Find it online:

Be sure to pick up your copies today!

Review: Secret Sisters by Jayne Ann Krentz

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Secret Sisters by Jayne Ann Krentz
Publisher: Berkley
Genre: Romantic Suspense Secret Sisters Cover
ISBN: 9780399174483
Release Date: December 8, 2015
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

Madeline and Daphne were once as close as sisters—until a secret tore them apart. Now it might take them to their graves.

They knew his name, the man who tried to brutally attack twelve-year-old Madeline in her grandmother’s hotel. They thought they knew his fate. He wouldn't be bothering them anymore…ever. Still their lives would never be the same.

Madeline has returned to Washington after her grandmother's mysterious death. And at the old, abandoned hotel—a place she never wanted to see again—a dying man’s last words convey a warning: the secrets she and Daphne believed buried forever have been discovered.

Now, after almost two decades, Madeline and Daphne will be reunited in friendship and in fear. Unable to trust the local police, Madeline summons Jack Rayner, the hotel chain’s new security expert. Despite the secrets and mysteries that surround him, Jack is the only one she trusts…and wants.

Jack is no good at relationships but he does possess a specific skill set that includes a profoundly intimate understanding of warped and dangerous minds. With the assistance of Jack’s brother, Abe, a high-tech magician, the four of them will form an uneasy alliance against a killer who will stop at nothing to hide the truth…

Secret Sisters is part romance, part mystery, part family drama, and one hundred percent gripping entertainment. Jayne Ann Krentz knows how to hook readers and keep them on the edge of their seats, and that’s exactly what she does in this novel.

Madeline and Daphne were childhood best friends, until one fateful night when Madeline was attacked on the grounds of her grandmother’s hotel. The perpetrator died that night, but left behind information others would kill to possess. Only five people knew what really happened all those years ago, and now two of them are dead. It’s been eighteen years, but it’s clear someone wants the information Madeline’s attacker possessed, and they’re willing to kill to get it.

Now Madeline and Daphne have to return to the scene of the crime and solve an old mystery before someone takes them out. But they won’t be going alone. Madeline knows she can’t trust just anyone with the truth, so she asks for the help of her new security expert, Jack Rayner. With the help of Jack and his brother, Abe, Madeline and Daphne will unravel the secrets of one powerful, dangerous family who will do anything to stop them.

I love a good mystery and Ms. Krentz takes readers on an action-packed journey as Madeline, Jack, Daphne, and Abe dodge killers and put the puzzle pieces together. Secret Sisters has fantastic twists and turns and a compelling storyline that made it difficult to put the book down. But an exciting mystery is nothing without great characters and Ms. Krentz has delivered some great ones. Madeline and Jack are the center of the story and they’re both strong-minded, wary individuals. Jack has hard edges and a heart of gold, but his past makes him hesitant to trust people. Something about Madeline calls to him, though, and it’s easy to see why each of them couldn’t resist the other. Madeline is a tough businesswoman with a sharp mind you have to respect. She also has scars that have never been able to heal because her attack had to be kept secret, and this adds a vulnerability to her character that broke my heart. She and Jack have excellent chemistry and he complements her perfectly. Their romance was brimming with potential, but it never quite reached it because the focus of the story was more on the suspense storyline. The secondary romance between Abe and Daphne was also more in the background, which was a pity as well because these two were a lot of fun. If I had one wish for Secret Sisters, it would be that the love stories were better developed. Yet even taking this into account, I loved this book. The story is compelling, the characters fascinating, and the suspense is top-notch. Jayne Ann Krentz is a master of several genres and her talent for writing romantic suspense shines in Secret Sisters.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Just Say Yes by Elizabeth Hayley

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Just Say Yes by Elizabeth Hayley
Series: Strictly Business, Book 2
Publisher: Signet
Genre: Contemporary Romance Just Say Yes Cover
ISBN: 9780451475534
Release Date: December 1, 2015
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

Magazine columnist Quinn Sawyer has always attracted sweet, innocent, and safe men. And something tells her it’s because she’s just as harmless. So when she starts craving a guy with an edge, she realizes she may have to get one for herself.

When her boss asks for a unique pitch, Quinn’s quest to live outside her comfort zone prompts her to suggest an idea that will cause her to break her good-girl rules. And who better than Tim Jacobs to help her push her boundaries? For a while now, Quinn’s had a hot crush on the tattooed executive chef with a checkered past. If anybody can bring out her inner rebel, he can.

It’s no surprise that as Tim and Quinn cross each task off the list she’s made for herself, the sparks between them grow more and more intense. Soon there’s no denying the attraction they each feel. But Tim’s troubled past reveals an even tougher edge than Quinn expected—which means for her, falling in love might just be the greatest rebellion of all.

The quintessential good girl decides to take a walk on the wild side in Just Say Yes. Author duo Elizabeth Hayley make Quinn’s quest to step outside of her comfort zone a fun one once our intrepid heroine is joined by her sexy, streetwise crush.

I absolutely adored Tim. He’s unusual for a hero in that he’s an addict, one who has been clean seven years. I loved that the authors didn’t simply pay lip service to Tim’s addiction, and they perfectly walked the fine line between giving this part of his character the attention it deserved and not letting it overpower the story. Tim has a big heart, but has been buried under the weight of his past. It was great watching him fully embrace life as he joined Quinn on her adventures and – apart from one painfully overused romance hero moment that seems to have been included for dramatic reasons – I was rooting for Tim the whole way. Because of his past, he doesn’t think he’s good enough for Quinn, but as he helps her complete the tasks she’s set out for herself, he finds he can’t resist her.

Quinn, unfortunately, is where Just Say Yes hit a snag for me. She came off a bit judgmental and too perfect to begin with, and though it rubbed me the wrong way, I was eager to see her grow as a character. Unfortunately, for me Quinn never lost that “too perfect to be real” quality, and though I ended up liking her well enough, I simply couldn’t connect with her. Her journey was fairly by-the-numbers, even with her learning to take risks, and I didn’t find her as interesting as Tim. Still, even with these little niggles, I found Quinn and Tim’s romance to be sweet, sensual, and fun to read about.

Just Say Yes is the second book in Elizabeth Hayley’s Strictly Business series, but as I have not read The Best Medicine I can safely say that Quinn and Tim’s story can be read on its own. Just Say Yes had its ups and downs for me, but overall I found it to be an enjoyable romance that should please contemporary romance fans.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Blog Tour: Sweetest Scoundrel by Elizabeth Hoyt

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Sweetest Scoundrel Blog Tour

I absolutely adored Elizabeth Hoyt's newest Maiden Lane story, Sweetest Scoundrel. It's sexy, unique, and a fantastic addition to one of my favorite historical romance series, which is why I'm so delighted to be a part of the Sweetest Scoundrel blog tour. My review of Sweetest Scoundrel can be found here, and if you scroll down on this post you'll find a Q&A with Elizabeth Hoyt, an excerpt from Sweetest Scoundrel, and a giveaway from Ms. Hoyt's publisher, Forever!

Q&A with Elizabeth Hoyt:

Q: Finish this sentence:
My hero will always punch first, ask questions later.

Q: What scene from SWEETEST SCOUNDREL was the hardest to write? Sweetest Scoundrel Cover
Ooo! Good question! I think it was the climatic ending. You want it to be action-y, but it has to make sense and it has to be emotional. And fast. Harder than it would seem. ;-)

Q: You’ve written both contemporary and historical romances—what are some of the unique challenges for each?
Well, with contemporary, staying contemporary. I’m fifty and usually writing about people in their twenties and thirties and I’m conscious of that. With historical, making sure my twenty-first century voice doesn’t slip in to the book too much.

Q: Are there any other time periods or settings that you’d like to explore in one of your books?
Oh, don’t get me started. There’s the (English) civil war and all those families turning on each other and death and treason. There’s a reason so many swashbucklers were set in that time period. But! The fashions. Men were wearing what amounted to pajama pants. Shudder. Soooo sad. Then there’s the Elizabethans. Men in tights! And being literate and able to write poetry was sexy. Think what you could do with that! Oh, and late Victorians! With all their prim manners and wealthy Americans! That would be fun.

But I think I’ll probably stay in Georgian England for the nonce. ;-)

Q: What do you hope readers can learn from SWEETEST SCOUNDREL?
It’s never too late to be healed by love.

Excerpt from Sweetest Scoundrel:

Sweetest Scoundrel Cover“What do you see when you look at me?”

What did she see when she looked at him?

Eve inhaled, trying and failing to tear her gaze from his.

Mr. Harte sprawled across her dainty settee like a Viking marauder in a pillaged Christian church. His broad shoulders took up more than half the width, his arms lazily draped over the back. His scarlet coat was spread open, contrasting with the sedate gray-
blue of the cushions almost shockingly. One long leg was thrust straight before him, the other cocked open and resting on a booted heel. The pose made the apex of his thighs very...obvious...and even as she kept her eyes locked on his she could feel heat rising in her cheeks.
What did she see?

She saw violence and anger, kept under a control that was tenuous at best. She saw power and a strength that could hurt her—kill her—if he so chose. She saw the innate brutality that was, in larger or smaller part, in all men.

She saw her most terrible fears.

But—and this was the truly unprecedented part—she saw more in him. She saw temptation—her temptation—alluring and frightening at the same time, his virility so strong it was nearly a visible miasma in the space between them.

She wanted him. Wanted that brash gaze, those long, muscled thighs, that mocking, insulting mouth, and the shoulders that went on forever, big and brawny and so
very, very male.

This was madness—she knew that intellectually. She’d never wanted a man before—was in fact afraid of almost all men, let alone one so obviously, blatantly sexual.

She took a breath, hoping that he couldn’t read all this from her gaze—and knowing it was a lost cause already.

His heavy-lidded green eyes were far, far too perceptive.

“I see...” She paused to lick suddenly dry lips. “I see that your hairline is nearly a perfect arc across the expanse of your forehead. That your eyebrows tilt ever so slightly up at the ends and that the right has a scar through it. I see that when you are solemn, the outer edges of your lips reach just to the midpoint of your eyes, but when you smile, they go beyond the corners. I see that your chin and jaw are almost in classical proportion and that a small white scar forms a comma on your chin just to the right of center.” She finally glanced away from him, breathing heavily, certain that she’d not thrown him off the track with her artist’s eye’s impressions. She inhaled again and ended, “I see every line of your face, every line’s intersection and how they relate. That is what I see when I look at you.”

“And is that all you see? Lines?” His voice was deep and amused.

She chanced a peek.

He still watched her, his gaze utterly unperturbed by her observations about his countenance.

No, she’d not fooled him at all. Sweetest Scoundrel Cover

She licked her lips again, buying time. “I see,” she said carefully, cautiously, “a very self-possessed man.”

Self-possessed,” he drawled. “I’m not sure what that means, frankly. It sounds, just a bit, like a coward’s answer.”

Her gaze flew to his, outraged.

But before she could take him down a peg, he chuckled softly. “Tell me, Miss Dinwoody, would you like to know what I see when I look at you?”

She shouldn’t. She really, really shouldn’t.

“Yes,” she blurted, and then winced because she knew well enough what men thought when they looked at her: ordinary, if they were charitable. Plain if they were not.

She braced herself for mockery, but when she glanced again at him, his gaze was hot and hard. Certainly not gentle. Certainly not kind. But he wasn’t dismissing her, either.

He looked at her as if they were equals. As if he really saw her, a woman to his man.

“I see,” he said, his deep voice musing, “a woman afraid, but fighting her fears. A woman who carries herself like a queen. A woman who could rule us all, I suspect.”

She gazed at him, her breath caught in her throat, afraid to exhale and break the spell.

A corner of that wicked mouth tilted up. “And I see a woman who has a deep curiosity. Who wants to feel but is worried—of herself? Of others?” He shook his head. “I’m not sure.” He leaned forward slowly, destroying his pose, and she had to fight herself not to scoot her chair away from him. “But I think she has a fire banked within her. Maybe it’s only embers now, glowing in the dark, but if tinder were to be put to those embers...” He grinned slowly. Dangerously. “Oh, what a conflagration that would be.”

About Sweetest Scoundrel:

Sweetest Scoundrel CoverSHE’S TAKING CHARGE
Prim, proper, and thrifty, Eve Dinwoody is all business when it comes to protecting her brother’s investment. But when she agrees to control the purse strings of London’s premier pleasure garden, Harte’s Folly, she finds herself butting heads with an infuriating scoundrel who can’t be controlled.

Bawdy and bold, Asa Makepeace doesn’t have time for a penny-pinching prude like Eve. As the garden’s larger-than-life owner, he’s already dealing with self-centered sopranos and temperamental tenors. He's not about to let an aristocratic woman boss him around…no matter how enticing she is.

In spite of her lack of theatrical experience – and her fiery clashes with Asa – Eve is determined to turn Harte’s Folly into a smashing success. But the harder she tries to manage the stubborn rake, the harder it is to ignore his seductive charm and raw magnetism. There’s no denying the smoldering fire between them – and trying to put it out would be the greatest folly of all…

My Review | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | BAM! | iTunes | Google Play

About Elizabeth Hoyt:

Elizabeth Hoyt
Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times bestselling author of over seventeen lush historical romances including the Maiden Lane series. Publishers Weekly has called her writing "mesmerizing." She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with three untrained dogs, a garden in constant need of weeding, and the long-suffering Mr. Hoyt.

Find Elizabeth Hoyt on the Web: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


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Review: How to Bewitch an Earl by Ally Broadfield

Monday, November 23, 2015

How to Bewitch an Earl by Ally Broadfield
Series: How To, Book 2
Publisher: Entangled: Scandalous
Genre: Historical Romance How to Bewitch an Earl Cover
ISBN: 9781633755239
Release Date: November 30, 2015
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

He never expected the clues to lead to her…

Edward Adair, heir to the Duke of Boulstridge, is more interested in finding a missing family heirloom than a wife. But when his parents issue an ultimatum – marry or lose your allowance – he reluctantly agrees to attend a house party to find a bride. Instead, he discovers attractive but infuriating Miss Isabella Winthrop in his library, reading the private family journal that holds clues to the location of the heirloom.

Though Isabella finds Edward haughty and arrogant, she offers to take him to the next clue mentioned in the journal if he will pay her, which will enable her to help her brother restore his estate. Edward counters with an offer of an even larger payment…if she agrees to masquerade as his betrothed to deter the other ladies until the house party ends.

As they work together to solve the mystery their mutual attraction grows, but just when they begin to think they should make their engagement real, a secret is revealed that could destroy everything.

How to Bewitch an Earl is an entertaining, fast-paced romance. I’m a sucker for a story with a treasure hunt (especially if diamonds are involved) and author Ally Broadfield made the search for the missing tiara a fun one. Add in some highly entertaining secondary characters, secrets, and a romance and it’s no wonder I had a hard time putting How to Bewitch an Earl down.

Edward has wanted to find the missing family tiara ever since he was a child. He’s obsessed with finding it, and since his father is reluctant to give up any control over the family estates, Edward focuses wholly on the tiara and being the frivolous heir. His parents have finally had enough and have decided it’s time for him to settle down, but at the house party they arrange it’s not a simpering debutante who catches Edward’s eye, but the secretive Isabella Winthrop. Isa is hiding her aristocratic heritage and acting as a companion so that she may help her brother pull the family estate out of debt. All she wants is to blend into the background, but sparks fly when she meets Edward. Attraction and temper combined makes for a rocky start to Isa and Edward’s relationship, but their feelings take a turn when Isa begins to help Edward on his quest for the tiara.

It’s easy to like Isa. She’s not perfect, but she has a good heart and is a bright, likeable heroine. Edward is where the story hits a snag for me. I wanted to like him so badly, but he’s unquestionably spoiled. It’s logical for him to be that way given the time period, but I had hoped to see him grow as a character over the course of the story. To me, Edward never really matured, only being the hero he should be when things went his way. For me this was a problem that keeps me from rating the story higher. That being said, I cannot deny I was drawn into the story, even with my reservations about the hero.

How to Bewitch an Earl is the second book in Ms. Broadfield’s How To series, but you don’t have to have read How to Beguile a Duke in order to enjoy Edward and Isa’s story. That being said, part of the fun of the book for me was revisiting Nick and Catherine (Edward’s parents and the hero and heroine of the first book). I think I liked them even more in this story than their own and it was lovely seeing how they have and have not changed over the years. How to Bewitch an Earl also introduces Edward’s sister Louisa, and I absolutely adored her. I desperately hope Ms. Broadfield writes a book for her and the man I hope will be her hero. The Adair family is unique and a lot of fun to read about, and I hope to see more of them in the future.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: How to Seduce a Scot by Christy English

Sunday, November 22, 2015

How to Seduce a Scot by Christy English
Series: Broadswords and Ballrooms, Book 1
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genre: Historical Romance How to Seduce a Scot Cover
ISBN: 9781492612872
Release Date: December 1, 2015
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

He's the terror of the ton…

The plan is simple:
1. Descend from the Highlands to face the aggravation of a London Season;
2. Foist his wild sister off on some gullible English lord;
3. Retreat before the ladies of the scandalized ton can get any ideas.

Determined to see his hellion of a sister wed, Highlander Alexander Waters is willing to face anything-even the English. He just didn't expect his own rough manners to cause such a riot...or for a blooming English rose to catch his eye.

Gently bred Catherine Middlebrook must find a respectable man to marry or her family will be ruined. She won’t allow herself to be distracted by Highland barbarians…no matter how her body may thrill whenever Alex is near.

Catherine wasn't part of the plan, but as their battle of wills escalates, Alex comes to realize this “proper” English girl is as wild as the Highlands themselves…and nothing will stop him from having her.

How to Seduce a Scot is a sweet romance from beginning to end. Christy English’s first Broadswords and Ballrooms book is filled with nice, likeable characters, but the overall story may have been better served if it were novella-length.

Alexander Waters is a proud Scotsman who yearns to be at sea…or in the Highlands…or pretty much anywhere but a London ballroom. But he’s promised his mother he’d see his wild sister married to an Englishman, so Alex is stuck among the foppish members of the ton until Mary Elizabeth finds a husband. The last thing Alex expects is to fall in love at first sight when he spies Mary Elizabeth talking to an angel, better known as the very proper Catherine Middlebrook. Catherine is gentle, sweet, and perfect – everything Alex didn’t know he wanted. But he’s determined to return to sea and is not ready to take a wife. For her part, Catherine needs to marry – fast. In the wake of her father’s death and her mother’s uncontrollable spending, Catherine knows she needs to marry a wealthy man who will take care of her family before they lose everything. She can’t afford to be tempted by her new friend’s brother, especially since he makes it clear he has no plans to wed. Only putting Alex out of her mind is impossible when the man seems to be everywhere she looks...

Aside from the hero and heroine’s stubbornness leading to a number of push-pull situations, there are very few obstacles in How to Seduce a Scot. Alex and Catherine fall in love in a heartbeat, but their romance is slow to build because they both have a picture in their head of their futures and neither of them planned for a sudden tumble into love. I liked Alex and Catherine, but she was a bit too perfect and he was a bit too indecisive, and both of them were overshadowed by the more energetic personalities around them. And as much as I wanted to be swept away by their love story, I never was. There wasn’t enough “meat” to the plot or the characters (neither of whom really changed over the course of the story) to keep the book moving at a decent pace, which is why I think the story may have been better served being trimmed down to novella size.

How to Seduce a Scot isn’t the most memorable story, but it’s light, sweet, and enjoyable. I finished Catherine and Alex’s story wishing it had a bit more depth to it, but at the same time I liked it well enough to be looking forward to the next Broadswords and Ballrooms book, How to Wed a Warrior.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
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