Tuesday, September 2, 2014

"Rock the Heart" By: Michelle A. Valentine Review

Rock the Heart
By: Michelle A. Valentine
For the last four years, good girl Lane has regretted breaking up with Noel Falcon. She thought she was sensible when she told him his dreams of being a rock star would get him nowhere, but now that he's a rock god and her career is stagnant, she realizes just how wrong she was. When Noel hires the marketing company where Lane is an intern, she’s forced to see him again. If she wants to land her dream job as executive within the company, she has to win him over and secure his account. Too bad Noel is still pissed at her for breaking his heart.
When Lane’s company flies her to a Black Falcon concert to gain Noel’s attention, emotions run high the moment she sees him and realizes she’s far from over him. But Noel’s countless trysts with groupies and his cocky attitude make Lane believe he isn’t the same guy she once loved—now he seems to only want her body. Then after Lane discloses she needs him to procure a job, Noel proves he’s a changed man by forcing her to go on the road with him in order to get it.
After Lane reluctantly takes Noel up on his offer, she becomes willing to do whatever it takes to keep him satisfied, even if it means succumbing to his seductive ways. Lane soon finds deception is a dangerous game and she’s not the only one playing

My Thoughts
    Lanie is shocked when she is assigned the Black Falcon for her new marketing campaign. Brand new at her company, she is surprised to be assigned to such a huge client as a relatively new employee. It isn’t until she realizes that she will be working closely with her ex-boyfriend, Noel, that she understands that her new client may have been assigned, not for her brain but for her past with the lead singer.
     Noel has secrets he goes to great lengths to hide from Lanie. Serious about finding his way back to her, Noel wants to guard his heart and keep things hidden while drawing Lanie closer and closer. Filled with fantastic secondary characters and a fiery main romance, the question becomes, what secrets does Noel really have and can Lanie live with the consequences.
     I really enjoyed Noel and Lanie’s adventure through Rock the Heart. Their shared pasts created a fantastic backdrop and it made an intregal part of the story blossom. Plus their scenes seemed to just burn off the pages.
    My favorite parts though included Noel’s bandmates. I enjoyed Lanie don’t get me wrong, but the scenes with his bandmates were funny, lighthearted, and realistic. You could easily see why Noel considered them family and steered clear of his own.
    All in all a really cute, creative romance with a little drama towards the end. Sweet and fun with the right amount of naughty mixed in, Rock the Heart is the first in what I can only hope is a long series featuring the Black Falcon band. Next up is Rock My Bed, featuring Aubrey and Riff.
Book Details
Publisher: Michelle A Valentine Books
Date of Publication: November 15, 2012
# of Pages: 330
Source: Personal Purchase
Location: New York, NY

Originally Published at The Brunette Librarian's Blog

Friday, August 29, 2014

Destroyer Angel: An Anna Pigeon Novel by Navada Barr

  • Series: Anna Pigeon (Book 19)
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books; First Edition first Printing edition (April 1, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312614586
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312614584
  • Narrator: Barbara Rosenblat

  • SUMMARY: From Booklist "When her friend Heath (Hard Truth, 2005), a paraplegic, agrees to road test a wheelchair poised to revolutionize the sports-gear market, park-ranger Anna Pigeon guides Heath; her daughter, Elizabeth; the chair’s designer, Leah; and Leah’s daughter on a trek in Minnesota’s Iron Mountains. It’s all fresh air and fireside chats until four armed men suddenly appear and abduct the hikers. Anna returns from a canoe jaunt to discover her friends held at gunpoint and stays hidden so that she can track them, seizing every opportunity to help her friends. Meanwhile, Heath struggles to survive the off-trail hike and protect the girls. With no cellular reception, Anna’s cunning strikes are the only hope for rescue, and she ferociously, sometimes savagely, harnesses the rules of the wild to even the odds."

    MY THOUGHTS: It should have been called a "Heath Novel".  Anna seemed to be the "secondary character" to the storyline line.  The story seemed to drag on to me. I wondered if Miss Barr is planning on coming up with a new series, poor Anna, seems to have lost her way.  As always Barabara Rosenblat does a superb job narrating the book.

    Wednesday, August 27, 2014

    North of Normal

    NORTH OF NORMAL by Cea Sunrise Person
    Copyright 2014
    340 pages
    ISBN  978-0062289865

    In the late 1960's, Cea Sunrise Person's family left a comfortable existence in California to
    escape civilization and live off the land in the Canadian wilderness. 

    Living out her grandparents' dream with her teenage mother, Michelle, Cea knew little of the
    world beyond the forest.  When Cea was five, her mother took her on the road with a new boyfriend.
    As the three of them set upon a series of ill-fated adventures, Cea began to question both her highly unusual world and the hedonistic woman at the center of it, her mother.  Finally, in her early teens, Cea realized she would have to make a choice as drastic as the one her grandparents had once made in order to save herself.

    While a successful international modeling career offered her a way out of the wilderness, Person discovered that this new world was in its own way overwhelming and full of challenges.  But, she persevered and supported herself from age thirteen to thirty-one as an international model working primarily in Europe.  She now lives in Vancouver and is a happily married mother of three.

    "Breaking All the Rules" By: Cynthia Sax Review

    Breaking All the Rules
    By: Cynthia Sax

    Nathan Lawford, Blaine Technologies' chief financial officer, is known as the Iceman. He conducts his personal and business affairs without emotion, never allowing himself to become involved with anyone. When Nate sees something or someone he wants, he negotiates, paying a simple, set monetary price. Now he wants Camille, the company's green-haired intern. Camille Joplin Trent never expected to be paid to pleasure the man of her dreams. She can't quite figure out why this is a bad thing. Nate is intelligent, handsome, sophisticated, everything she's ever wanted in a lover and never thought she could have. Their contract is for a month, thirty lust-filled days of making every sexual fantasy they've ever had come true. At the end of this month, the rules state their relationship will end. Of course, Camille has never been good at following rules.

    My Thoughts
         Camille is almost the anti-corporate executive. With bright green hair, a devil may care attitude, a hacker/hippie mentality, and multiple piercings, Camille is used to being the outsider. Yet every time she sees Nate Lawford, she can’t help but think there may be something more in his eyes than contempt. Meeting everyday in the elevator, they seem to stalk one another, as a lion would a gazelle.
        Nate proposes a unique idea to Camille after a steamy encounter...be completely his for a month. Camille is at first intrigued by the idea but once within Nate’s home and in his possession, they find out just how well they fit with one another. Nate’s entire life has been measured and metered, devoid of emotion and parental love. With Camille, he is encouraged to be emotional and isn’t bothered at all by her unconventional choices in both wardrobe and hair color.
         I loved this story so stinkin’ much. Oye. I knew I was going to love Camille when she first appeared in Flashes of Me. She’s such a flower child rebel, she’s so adorable and fun loving. Nate, I honestly didn’t like. He seemed so cold and just unapproachable. However, he is totally redeemed when you meet his wildly crazy parents and see how he treats Camille when he’s finally allowed to just be himself.
        Wonderfully sexy and witty, Breaking All the Rules, is a sweet, sensual story that finally tells the story of our favorite green haired hacker Camille and the cold but perhaps misunderstood Nate. Camille has to fight her inhibitions and self consciousness while Nate is forced out of his unemotional shell. I thoroughly enjoyed both the eroticism of the story while also telling a highly involved character driven story. Easily read as a stand alone book, if you haven’t read sort of the precurser, check out Flashes of Me also!

    Book Details
    Publisher: Avon Red Impulse
    Date of Publication: March 4, 2014
    ISBN: 978-0062328212
    # of Pages: 100
    Source: Edelweiss- for Review

    Originally Published at The Brunette Librarian's Blog

    Tuesday, August 26, 2014

    "Flashes of Me" By: Cynthia Sax Review

    Flashes of Me
    By: Cynthia Sax

    Henley, the head of cyber security at Blaine Technologies, is a man no one crosses. He watches employees constantly, using his network of cameras, and enforces his rules by any means possible. Rumors of his violent past, along with his scarred hands and huge size, have resulted in his being feared by everyone … almost everyone.Katalina, the new intern, worries about the revelation of her most painful secret much more than she fears her sexy boss's wrath. She sees the loneliness in his dark eyes, feels the gentleness in his marred fingers, tastes the need in his kisses … and she knows he watches her. His silly rules about not stripping for the cameras and no sex at the office are destined to be broken.Kat likes to be watched. Henley can't look away. Will this beauty be able to tame her beastly boss?

    My Thoughts
      When Katalina begins a new job at Blaine Technologies, she is immediately transfixed by a huge, gentle giant who just happens to be the head of security. He’s handsome, intelligent, and utterly bewitched her from the first minutes of their meeting. Attempting to provoke him into approaching her, Kataline realizes he can see everything she does. So Kat proceeds to entice Henley, the head of Cyber Security, as much as possible, leading to a delightful back and forth.
       So I was a bit back and forth on this book. It gets very naughty pretty quickly, but once I got over the first two or three chapters, I was engrossed in the characters. Henley is such an enigma and I honestly could have read about him for a whole other book. Raw and emotional, Sax does a pretty darn good job of writing how these two completely opposite characters look at their lives in completely different ways...which in turn, make the book a quick read and an even better ending.

    Note: I totally read this series out of order so I completely condone reading this book even if you haven’t read the previous installments.

    Book Details
    Publisher: Avon Red Impulse
    Date of Publication: February 18, 2014
    # of Pages: 208
    ISBN: 9780062328182
    Source: Personal Purchase

    Originally Published at The Brunette Librarian's Blog

    Monday, August 25, 2014

    The Irresistible Blueberry Bakeshop & Café                                                                                                                                                                            – July 1, 2014

    The Read...

    A high-powered Manhattan attorney finds love, purpose, and the promise of a simpler life in her grandmother's hometown.

    Ellen Branford is going to fulfill her grandmother's dying wish--to find the hometown boy she once loved, and give him her last letter. Ellen leaves Manhattan and her Kennedy-esque fiance for Beacon, Maine. What should be a one-day trip is quickly complicated when she almost drowns in the chilly bay and is saved by a local carpenter. The rescue turns Ellen into something of a local celebrity, which may or may not help her unravel the past her grandmother labored to keep hidden. As she learns about her grandmother and herself, it becomes clear that a 24-hour visit to Beacon may never be enough. THE IRRESISTIBLE BLUEBERRY BAKESHOP & CAFE is a warm and delicious debut about the power of a simpler life.

    My take on "The Irresistible Blueberry Bakeshop & Café by Mary Simses

    I really enjoyed this book.  It was a quick read.  It was thrilling, funny and heart warming.  I sat with a cup of tea and wished for something with blueberries.  It will make you wish for simpler times and a simpler life, family, community and the love of your life to share it. 

    Saturday, August 23, 2014

    the perks of being a wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

    Paperback213 pages
    Published February 1999 by MTV Books and Pocket Books (first published 1999)

    Set in the early 1990s, this story follows Charlie, the book's "wallflower", through his freshman year of high school.
    Perks begins with an emotionally sensitive, and socially awkward, 15-year-old boy named Charlie writing letters to an unknown recipient about his first year at high school, while grappling with traumatic experiences from his past.

    I loved this book!  It reminded me of a sort of modern version of Catcher in the Rye.  Great coming of age story.  I feel YA readers as well as adults, should find this book easy to relate to, as we've all had moments in our lives when we've felt like an outsider, or different, especially in our youth.

    I found myself wondering who Charlie's letters were intended for.  Were they written to Charlie himself, as some sort of therapy for the events he'd experienced prior?  Were they to his deceased Aunt, whose significance I can't discuss without giving an important piece of the story away.  Was the recipient not so symbolic, but literally a classmate or peer of Charlie's?  Or, were WE the person Charlie was writing to?  Was this a way for the author to build intimacy between us and the main character?

    The other reason I found myself so into this book, were all of the memorable quotes.  So many of them stayed with me long after I finished the story.  I'll end my review with a few of my favorites.   :) 
    “We accept the love we think we deserve.” 

    “I was looking at the photographs and I started thinking that there was a time when these weren't memories.” 

    "and in that moment, I swear we were infinite."

    “But even if we don't have the power to choose where we come from we can still choose where we go from there."

    “I love Twinkies, and the reason I am saying that is because we are all supposed to think of reasons to live.” 

    “I would die for you. But I won’t live for you.”