Category Archives: Contemporary Romance

>Review: Creed’s Honor by Linda Lael Miller

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Creed's Honor (Hqn)Synopsis: Conner Creed knows exactly who he is: a hardworking rancher carrying on his uncle’s legacy in Lonesome Bend, Colorado. Maybe a small-town cowboy’s life isn’t his dream, but he owes the man who took him in as a kid. Until the identical twin brother he’s been estranged from for years reenters his life.

Conner struggles with identity issues as he gets to know his wilder brother. And then he meets Tricia McCall, a beautiful woman who knows a thing or two about living someone else’s dreams. Together, they just might find their own dreams right here in Lonesome Bend….

I love a good cowboy—I mean cowboy story—and this is a good one. Forget about bygone times in the Old West, this is a contemporary story dealing with present day issues—sibling rivalry, jealousy, loneliness, and love.


Conner Creed is convinced his identical twin brother Brody seduced his fiancé before they disappeared ten years ago. If he wasn’t guilty, why did he leave? During Brody’s absence, Conner works the ranch and lives a lonely, solitary life. Then the quiet, lovely Tricia McCall catches his eye when she shows up to care for her great-grandmother Natty.

Even though Tricia grew up spending her summers in Lonesome Bend, she was never part of the local crowd. Her shyness held her back then just as it does now, and Tricia thinks Conner is handsome, but out of her league. So instead of pushing past her shyness, she dreams of returning to Seattle and the emotionally distant boyfriend she hasn’t seen in the year and a half she’s been in Lonesome Bend. But wily old great-grandmother Natty knows Tricia and Conner are perfect for each other and sets the wheels in motion to throw them together.

Out of the blue, Conner’s scruffy-looking twin returns ready to settle down. This stirs no small amount of resentment in Conner. Not only does Brody steal his former fiancé, now he wants a say in running the ranch where Conner has invested so much of his life. Sparks fly when neither is willing to make the first move toward reconciliation. When Brody cuts his hair, cleans up his act, borrows Conner’s clothes and his truck, Conner knows he’s up to no good. Is Brody planning to repeat the past with Tricia? Or is he up to something more sinister? That’s what Conner has to discover. The angry tension between the brothers is as palpable as the sexual tension between Conner and Tricia.

Like a guilty pleasure, I thoroughly enjoyed losing myself in Creed’s Honor. With each book, Linda Lael Miller has honed her writing skills and perfected her art. Readers know her characters like their own families and feel just as comfortable with them. Whether you’re a cowboy aficionado or complete greenhorn, you’ll enjoy the underlying love stories that weave these lives together.

A Creed in Stone Creek is the lead off book in the Creed trilogy, followed by Creed’s Honor and The Creed Legacy. After falling in love with these sexy cowboys, I now find it necessary to read all three books to indulge my fantasy. *sigh* I loves me some cowboys.

Mona Leigh

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  • Author: Linda Lael Miller 
  • Series: Montana Creeds Series 6 
  • Release:May 2011 
  • Source: Provided by author

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    >Guest Blog & Giveaway: Where the Boys Are by Tara Lain

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    Many thanks to the Dolls for inviting me today to celebrate the release of my new book The Scientist and the Supermodel. Since the book is about two beautiful men, I thought it would be fun to stalk some gorgeous men around the world. I’ve been blessed to travel a lot in my life. I’m an Army brat so as a child I lived in Austria and Japan and all over the US. As an adult, I’ve traveled extensively, some for business and a lot for pleasure. I get little souvenirs from all the places I visit, I collect memories of fantastic meals and experiences … and I catalog where to find the best-looking men! I hasten to explain that this is purely aesthetic. I am very happily married to a handsome guy who takes all these great trips with me, but I love looking at beautiful men. If you read my books, you’ll know this. Many of my heroes are just a bit more gorgeous than may be possible (have you met Roan Black?). LOL. But I have had some great models. So if you’re interested in finding the beautiful guys of the world, here’s my road-map.

    Sengal
    • The most gorgeous men and boys (women too) I have ever seen are in Senegal, Africa. Breathtaking. Out of every ten people you see in Senegal, seven will be good-looking and three will be movie stars. That has to be higher than the usual average. Tall and lean, with broad shoulders, long legs and necks, and beautifully structured faces, these men must spring from the same ancestral blood as many American basketball players. Their skin is smooth ebony and their teeth are brilliant white. I couldn’t stop staring.
    • Danish
    • Denmark and Norway have some yummy men. I shouldn’t group them since there are more blonds in Denmark , but they both show that Viking ancestry. Tall, strong and handsome as a rule rather than pretty, these men make great alpha heroes.
    • Spain
    • In Spain, the ditch-diggers look like movie stars. Smallish, with dark hair and olive skin, they resemble the Italians but often with sharper more architectural features. I went to Spain first as a girl in my early twenties and left my heart.
    • Brazillian
    • While Danes and Norwegians are mostly white and the Senegalese are generally black, the men of Brazil are every shade of the rainbow but blue (that I saw.) Tall, short, black, white and every color of brown, Brazilian’s meet your desire for variety.
    • French
    • The French are not to everyone’s taste, but I love them. Tending to be of medium height (though both extremes are common), slender with sharp features and the famous long noses, French men include some of the handsomest and ugliest guys around. But then, the French even make ugly handsome.

    Forgive all my generalities. The world is a melting pot and you can find every type of man everywhere. But still, it makes you want to take a trip, doesn’t it?

    AND NOW I HAVE TO TELL YOU ABOUT THE CONTEST!!! 
    8 BOOKS THIS MONTH! 4 Books Next Month.

    Here’s the first simple step:

    Comment on this blog and leave your email address. I will copy it and enter it in the drawing for the 2 books being given away during this week. One copy of The Scientist and the Supermodel and One copy of Genetic Attraction. You’ll be notified by email if you win. Comment and email, simple.

    Here’s MORE CHANCES TO WIN! (more complicated so read closely LOL)

    • Go to my Book blog http://beautifulboysbooks.blogspot.com. Leave a comment and follow the blog (if you already do follow, it counts). You will be entered in EVERY drawing until the end of the month. Two books will be given away every week and you’ll be entered in all those drawings.
    • Go to every blog on my blog tour and leave a comment on the day of the post (or at least in the same week) and you will be entered again during the week in which the post is made.
    • The entire blog tour is listed on my website http://www.taralain.com/blog_tour_schedule.html and updates will be posted regularly so check it out. There will also be Yahoo Group chats where I will be giving away other books so watch for those!

    Whew!! Remember, you can take each one of these steps and have a bunch of chances to WIN! (You just have to enter, the logistics are my nightmare! LOL) Start by leaving a comment and your email here. I’ll email you if you WIN. Thank you so much for coming by. : )

    Jake has a mad hidden passion for his older boss, Emmaline Silvay, so why is he getting all hot and bothered when he sees this gorgeous man in a bar? Though Jake thinks of himself as straight, he’s been having a lot of trouble getting excited about any of the girls he’s dated. He doesn’t have any such trouble with the supermodel, which throws his whole world into confusion. Roan Black knows better than to fall for some straight guy, especially a PhD scientist who couldn’t possibly be interested in a high school dropout, could he? Well, maybe they can just have sex ….

    Tara Lain never met a beautiful boy she didn’t love – at least on paper. A writer of erotic romance, mostly ménage and male/male, Tara loves all her characters, but especially her handsome heroes. A lifelong writer of serious non-fiction, Tara only fell in love with EROM in 2009 and, through perseverance and lots of workshops, had the first novel she ever wrote accepted for publication in 2010. She’s now on book six. After an exotic life of travel all over the world and work in television, education and advertising, Tara settled in Southern California with her soul-mate husband and opened her own small marketing business. She paints, collages, and started practicing yoga “way before it was fashionable”. Passionate about diversity, justice, inclusion and new ideas she says on her tombstone it will read, “Yes”.

    >Novella Review: Cowboy Take Me Away by Kathleen Eagle

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    Cowboy, Take Me Away (Harlequin Special Edition)Her camera didn’t lie.
    When photographer Skyler Quinn first fixed her lens on gorgeous cowboy Trace Wolf Track, she liked what she saw but didn’t give it much thought. Until everywhere she went—the rodeo, the Double D Wild Horse Sanctuary— there he was, and the heat between them built to the boiling point.

    As a widow struggling with debts and loyalties from a former life, Skyler needed to stay focused, especially if she wanted to achieve her dream of becoming a mother. Was Trace a fatal distraction, a mere summer fling? Or did this younger man—so deep, so passionate—hold the key to a future that would make all her dreams come true?

    This novella was an interesting twist on the May / December romance angle. For one thing, Skyler wasn’t exactly a December—she was more of a July. She didn’t set out to catch a younger man, but he had a way of popping up wherever she went, their chemistry worked, and Trace found lots to appreciate in a slightly older woman.

     There were touching moments between them when I found myself smiling and nodding in agreement—especially when he tells her age doesn’t matter. There were also a few rough spots that felt a little uncomfortable. For instance, I liked Skyler, but there were times when her doubts overshadowed the rest of the story, and the intensity of her desire for a family had me watching her biological clock tick away. When she and Trace argued, it lacked the force of a good emotional blow-up. But there’s something to be said for new love and making up, because the love scenes were great.

    Overall, I liked the book and the characters and I would plunk down my money to buy it. After all, not everyone fights in the same way, and what may be simply an argument for me could be a catastrophe in someone else’s eyes. And yes, I liked the ending. That made it all worthwhile.

    *Book furnished by NetGalley
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    >Lil’s Review of Breathing Room by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

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    Breathing RoomJoin the New York Times bestselling author on a journey to the sun-washed hills of Tuscany. Another sexy, wonderful, contemporary love story with all the heart, wisdom, and wit that have made Susan Elizabeth Phillips the gold standard for women’s fiction.

    “She’s Dr. Isabel Favor, America’s diva of self-help.
    He’s Ren Gage, Hollywood’s favorite villain.
    Sometimes you just know that God has a sense of humor.”

    Dr. Isabel Favor, author of Four Cornerstones for a Favorable Life, has sacrificed everything to build her self-help empire. Then, in a matter of weeks, it all comes crashing down. She loses her money to an unscrupulous accountant, her fiancé to a frumpy older woman, and her reputation to headlines denouncing her as a fraud. America’s diva of self-help soon discovers she can fix everyone’s life but her own. Broke, heartsick, and soul-weary, she heads for Italy in search of a little breathing room.

    BREATHING ROOM has become one of my favorite books by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. Ms. Phillips is one of the main reasons I have become addicted to romance told with humor. She has a way to really pull the reader into the story with her likable characters and descriptive writing. Her writing is full of snark and irony. Just when you think you can’t choke on your Santa Rita Reserve one more time, it’s shooting out your nose. Take. My. Word. For. It.

    When Phillips writes about a meal your mouth waters. When she describes a view from the farm house patio you feel the sun on your face. The layers of emotion are thick with humor and angst. It’s a feast for your funny bone and your heart. I know this may mark me as a total geek, but when I opened Nook to read this for a third time I was giddy. I love the world that was created on these “pages”. If someday I need a happy place to find my center, it will be Isabel’s farmhouse.

    Phillips has an entire literary universe of characters and history to tap into when she writes. If you like series writing then you have a couple of avenues to take with SEP. Breathing Room is a stand alone book among her novels and I hope it does not remain that way. She doesn’t ignore anyone. Each character is unique and richly developed, even the three old little boy who stole every scene he was in.
    I’m not a fan of adapting books into movies or T.V. shows (total shocker ;p) but if I had the talent to write a screenplay for a SEP novel, I would be ALL OVER IT. I could see this book as a mini series because anything less than seven hours would cut way to much hilarious dialogue!
    This book made sense. It wasn’t outrageous unless it fit. It was funny in all the right places and it inspired me. I want to live the Tuscan life. I want to eat the food, drink the wine, and play in the vineyards. And you will too.

    >Review: Stroke of Midnight by Bonnie Edwards

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    An unlikely Cinderella…

    When hardworking single mom Jaye Sinns meets younger playboy Alexander Carmichael, the sexual chemistry between them is undeniable. So Jaye gives in to temptation and allows him to whisk her away for her first-ever vacation. Two glorious weeks of no inhibitions, no strings and no responsibilities.

    A charming prince of a guy…

    Life with Alex is every woman’s fantasy-sizzling sex in the back of a limo, on a private plane, in exotic settings. But it’s not enough to fulfill a woman like Jaye for long. No matter how hot the sex is.

    A happy ending?

    Alex is soon craving more than Jaye’s body: he wants her love and admiration, too. For the first time in his life, he can’t buy the thing he desires most; and now he must decide if he’s willing to work at being the kind of man that Jaye needs, and give her the happily-ever-after she deserves.

    Fantasies make the world a more pleasant place and Bonnie Edwards has given us a fantasy that’s fun to read.

    Jaye Sinns reminds herself the world sees her as “trailer trash.” But she has a son she loves, friends she cares about, and a business that keeps food on the table.

    Alex Carmichael spots Jaye at an automobile auction and sets his cap for her. Somewhere between all the fun and games, they both learn a little more about life and love.

    Stroke of Midnight was a nice pick-me-up for a gloomy winter day and for a while, I forgot about the dreary weather outside. The pacing is consistent and the characters are likeable…make that enviable. This is the kind of book that will cheer you up and keep you reading.

    Find Bonnie Edwards:
    Website | Facebook | Twitter

    Book provided by Carina Press. (NetGalley)
    Buy Stroke of Midnight by Bonnie Edwards.

    >Review: Can’t Say No by Jennifer Greene

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    After tragedy strikes, Bree Penoyer’s feelings of guilt leave her speechless-literally. Tired of always being the good girl and just letting things happen to her, Bree decides it’s time to take life into her own hands. She dumps her lucrative but uninspiring career and her sweet but boring fiancé, and escapes to her late grandmother’s rustic cabin in South Carolina to find herself again.
    Her solitude is immediately disrupted by her new neighbor, Hart Manning, a sexy but arrogant rogue who doesn’t seem capable of taking no for an answer. The last thing Bree wants is an affair, especially with a self-proclaimed womanizer like Hart. But she can’t deny he arouses her as no man ever has, and when at last she finds her voice, she’s very ready to say yes!

    Ever wish you could change your life? That’s what Bree Penoyer did without realizing it. Always the good, dependable daughter, fiancé, and employee, the death of Bree’s grandmother knocks the pins out from under her, forcing her to take a long, hard look at herself and her life. Rather than confront her emotions and regrets head on, she loses the capacity to speak and runs away to her grandmother’s cabin to lick her wounds and find solace in the most comforting place she knows.

    Hart Manning is Bree’s seatmate on the flight to South Carolina and immediately takes an interest in the woman who won’t speak and whose anger is palpable. In fact, he decides she will be his top priority during his vacation. The tactics he uses and the emotions he arouses in his efforts to get her to talk would try the patience of a saint. And Bree’s no saint.

    Jennifer Greene has captured the essence of a man who, though infuriating, makes it impossible to dislike him and even more impossible not to fall in love with him. I found myself melting with every outrageous action, every obnoxious, chiding sentence he uttered. By the end of the book, I would have run away with him without a backward glance. (Note to husband: Just kidding, honey.) *wink, wink*

    Can’t Say No is one of the most satisfying romances I’ve read. It has all the ingredients of a hot romance with all the emotion of a love story. Definitely a book to put on your TBR list.

    Find Jennifer Greene: Website

    Provided by Carina Press. (NetGalley)
    Buy Can’t Say No by Jennifer Greene.

    >Review: The Guy Next Door (Anthology)

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    The Guy Next Door: Ready, Set, Jett\Gail's Gone Wild\Just One Taste (Hqn)
    Ready, Set, Jett by Lori Foster
    A vacation from her no-strings romance with her sexy next-door neighbor. That’s what Natalie Alexander needs to get her head— and heart—together. But her solo trip south turns into a disaster when gorgeous Jett Sutter turns up with another challenge.

    Gail’s Gone Wild by Susan Donovan
    Single mom Gail Chapman insists on chaperoning her teenage daughter’s spring-break trip to Key West. But she never expects to face temptation—in the hunky form of Jesse Batista, the mysterious man in the cottage next door.

    Just One Taste by Victoria Dahl
    All-work-and-no-play businessman Eric Donovan won’t be distracted by a “businesswoman” who’s all wrong for him. Beth Cantrell owns a woman’s erotica shop! And she has a juicy little secret. Can she tempt him to put pleasure before business for once?

    This trio of short stories was a wonderful find on my part.

    In Ready, Set, Jett, Lori Foster gives us the perfect situation – Jett Sutter, who wants a no-strings-attached relationship, meets Natalie Alexander, a woman with the same goal – and he discovers that sometimes strings are very worthwhile. But he has his work cut out for him as he tries to convince her of that.

    While Natalie’s falling in love, her sister, Molly, is missing. Molly’s story is continued in When You Dare, the first book in Foster’s new trilogy.

    Susan Donovan hit the mark with Gail’s Gone Wild. Professor Gail Chapman plays chaperone on spring break…and ends up breaking all the rules she set for her daughter. Somehow, their roles get reversed and Gail’s daughter, Holly, ends up worrying that her mother will be taken advantage of by next-door neighbor and famous author, Jesse Batista. Gail discovers how wonderful it is to let go of her inhibitions.

    A fun story about second chances and finding love when you least expect it, it’s the kind of adventure we often daydream about, but are seldom brave enough to capitalize on.

    Just One Taste by Victoria Dahl features a case of mistaken identity that allows Eric Donovan to let loose under the persona of his brother Jamie. Beth Cantrell assumes Eric is Jamie because she’s heard so much about Jamie’s sexual exploits. Eric assumes Beth is an accomplished seductress because she sells sex toys. Neither wants their friends or family to know about the other, but they end up rocking each other’s world.

    This story continues in the trilogy, Good Girls Don’t (9/11), Bad Boys Do (10/11), Real Men Will (11/11).

    Overall an outstanding trio of sexy tales. If you’re looking for hot reads, put this book on your list.

    Find Lori Foster:
    Website | Facebook | Twitter

    Find Susan Donovan:
    Website | Blog

    Find Victoria Dahl:
    Website | Blog | Twitter

    Book provided by HQN Books. (NetGalley)
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