Romance Novel Reviews – Roundup #3 – Week of May 24th, 2015

A Good Rogue is Hard to Find by Kelly Bowen

Read Entire Review at All About Romance

Review Excerpt:

“”Most of the débuts and follow-ups I’ve read over the past couple of years have been average at best, but this, Ms Bowen’s second book, is a very accomplished piece of work. It’s full of warmth, humour and intelligence, the characters are likeable and well-rounded and the author has managed to find an unusual plotline that, while it does require rather a sizeable suspension of disbelief, is handled so well as to make it possible for the reader to accept it and just go with the flow.

…Although Will, Jenna and the dowager are all engaging and well-written characters, the star of the book is undoubtedly Will, who grows and matures a lot throughout the story. At first, Jenna thinks of him in much the same way as everyone else who knows him, as “a beautiful fribble of a man”, just like any other aristocrat who treats privilege as his due, is oblivious to how lucky he really is and is uninterested in the suffering of others. At the beginning of the book, Will is a little pompous and tends to see everything in black and white – but as the story progresses, he is brought to acknowledge the advantages of his position and starts to see that perhaps his view has been too simplistic. His is not so much a change of heart as it is a re-alignment of it, so that his evolution from being a man who doesn’t know enough about the life of the poor to care about it, to one who wants to help is absolutely convincing.”

Current Price – $7.99
Length – 358 pages
Genre – Historical Romances

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Unbreakable by Emma Scott

Read Entire Review at Smart Bitches Trashy Books

Review Excerpt:

Unbreakable was a book that had a lot of unexpected swerves. It was sort of strange tonally, but it won me over. It has a terrible beginning and an ending which is a little too happy (which is saying a lot for a romance novel) but it does a good job of showing character progression, and the romance itself is very strong.

…Ultimately this book drove me crazy and yet it kept sucking me in. Once I got past the first chapter, I liked Alex. Perhaps I took some satisfaction in seeing her humbled, but I took more in seeing her grow. I liked the romance between her and Cody, although I was uncomfortable with the deceptions Alex practiced on both Cody and Drew. I enjoyed how much they respected each other, and how attentive they were to each other’s feelings in a world in which feelings were so de-valued by everyone else. Even when they have their worst fight, they can still count on each other for help. Once the parade of brand names slows down, the writing is fluid.

Current Price – $2.99
Length – 333 pages
Genre – Romantic Suspense

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Deep Down by Brenda Rothert

Read Entire Review at Aesta’s Book Blog

Review Excerpt:

I’d consider it a quieter, almost low-angst read, even though there is a very sensitive subject matter involved, and it’s also a slow build (which makes a lot of sense given what the heroine had been through) but it still kept me flipping the pages and eager to see what happened next.

…This book portrayed the sensitive subject of rape (and, the worst possible kind of betrayal) in a very honest and respectful way. But more importantly, it showed the heroine’s journey through dealing with what had happened to her, finding the strength to build a better life for her son, and after meeting the amazing (and swoon-worthy) hero, finally learning to trust and love again. In every way, this girl was a surviver.

…This is a story about a woman facing her worst possibly nightmare and finding the strength not only to survive but to conquer her fears and find happiness again. Overall, I really enjoyed it! I felt like the ending was a little “too perfect” but hey, its fiction! I just went with it.

Current Price – $3.99
Length – 258 pages
Genre – Contemporary Romance

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Flirting with Scandal by Chanel Cleeton

Read Entire Review at Smexy Books

Review Excerpt:

William is a good guy hero. He isn’t a jerk, he isn’t an asshole. He is just a good guy and it’s sexy. He courts Jackie so sweetly in this book. He knows Jackie is afraid of commitment and does his best to work around that to convince her to give their relationship a chance.

…This romance is sexy (very sexy!) and sweet and I really liked both William and Jackie…I felt like the gossip blog added silly, forced conflict not needed in this otherwise smartly written story. Jackie’s commitment fears and the camapign were enough to keep this story going. Also, we get both William and Jackie’s point of view in this story, but the author switches between the two a lot. More than once in each chapter. It pulled me out of the story.

…Otherwise this is cute. I’ll definitely read the next in the series.

Current Price – $4.27
Length – 257 pages
Genre – Contemporary Romance

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Secrets of a Summer Night by Lisa Kleypas

Read Entire Review at Smart Bitches Trashy Books

Review Excerpt:

Secrets of a Summer Night isn’t a perfect book, but it worked so, so well for me. This book is, in a lot of ways, a pride and prejudice story. The heroine, Annabelle Peyton, comes from a well-established, but poor family. Her father is dead, and she lives with her mother and brother on the edge of penury. Annabelle knows the only way to save her family is to marry a wealthy man. As a member of the ton, she has her eye on a peer. The problem is, many members of the aristocracy need wealthy wives and so Annabelle is 25 and facing dwindling prospects.

…I love it when romance novels feature female friendship. It’s something that’s missing in a lot of books, which is odd because I think most women have at least one close friend (whether female or male) that they confide in. The Quartet — Annabelle, Lillian, Daisy and Evangeline — are great because they support each other in an environment where women are actively tearing each other down to score a husband. There’s a great scene where Lillian and Daisy convince the shy Evie and proper Annabelle to play a game of rounders in knickers (sorta-baseball in their underwear) in a meadow.

…Secrets of a Summer Night wasn’t perfect. I thought the main conflict was resolved way too early, so much so that the last portion of the book really struggled to figure out what it was doing. But I didn’t really mind because I cared so deeply about Annabelle and Simon’s story. Had I loved the characters a little less, I probably would have been more irked by the way things dragged out, but I adored them and I would gobble up as much of their story as I was given.

Current Price – $7.99
Length – 384 pages
Genre – Historical Romance

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