Romance Novel Reviews – Roundup #5 – Week of June 15, 2015

Beautiful Secret by Christina Lauren

Read Entire Review at Smart Bitches Trashy Books

Review Excerpt:

If you like books with awkward, slightly shy, completely inept and uncomfortable dudes falling in love, then Beautiful Secret by Christina Lauren is all your catnip.

The appeal of this book (and some of Lauren’s others, notably Beautiful Bastard) is that the heroine finds out the unobtainable cool dude she’s been lusting after is human after all–and he wants her.

A lot of time in New Adult the sex happens so fast that a lot of the tension fizzles out. Beautiful Secret does a remarkable job of keeping the sexual content heavy (all Lauren’s books are pretty damn hot) while keeping the tension high. Niall has his issues, but the beauty of the story is how Ruby slowly works through them with him. He’s been dealing with his insecurities the whole book, so when the black moment came it felt a little weak. The book does deal with the fact that women are treated very differently in office romance scenarios than men are, but I saw that coming and it didn’t feel like enough of a hurdle for them.

If you like beta heroes, sexually inexperienced heroes, office romance, and hot sex–or if you’re just really, really into urban planning–then this is the book for you.

Current Price – $7.99
Length – 401 pages
Genre – Contemporary Romances

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The Bluestocking and the Rake by Norma Darcy

Read Entire Review at All About Romance

Review Excerpt:

I was very pleasantly surprised to find that The Bluestocking and the Rake is an accomplished piece of work, and certainly one of the most enjoyable books I’ve come across by a new author for quite some time. It’s written very much in the style of the traditional Regency, and concentrates principally on the developing relationship between the two principals, which is characterized by witty banter, a gradually dawning affection and respect, and is possessed of a satisfying degree of emotional depth.

There is a strongly written cast of secondary characters, and I enjoyed Ms Darcy’s writing style. The interplay between Marcham and Georgiana is a real delight.

The trope of the jaded rake and the prim young woman who captivates him is a well-used one, but Ms Darcy manages to freshen it up a bit. Marcham isn’t one of those heroes who needs to be dragged kicking and screaming to the altar; he’s ready and willing to enter the next phase of his life once he’s found the right woman. His wit and dryly humorous pronouncements often sail right over the heads of those around him, apart from Georgiana, who is one of the few able to appreciate and understand his sense of humour. When he falls, he falls hard but Georgiana believes her past is an insurmountable barrier and heartbreak looms for them both.

Current Price – $3.99
Length – 411 pages
Genre – Historical Romances

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A Pound of Flesh by Sophie Jackon

Read Entire Review at Aesta’s Book Blog

Review Excerpt:

“…From the moment I started reading, I was captivated and completely drawn into the story.

It’s a story about “a strong-minded prison tutor who discovers that her sexy bad-boy student is far more than he appears to be…” — C’mon, tell me you don’t just want to drop everything to read that! I loved seeing them get to know each other outside the constraints of the prison walls. They were still bound by their working relationship, but granted more freedoms. It allowed them more room to be playful and flirtatious even though they still had to keep them true feelings hidden.

There are good stories, and there are well written stories, but the best ones just have this extra spark to them that, for me, is that almost magical quality that turns them into top favorite reads.

I loved that Kat looked right past his labels and just saw him. I loved the way she stood up for what she felt and I loved the way he didn’t let people walk all over him just because he went to prison. I loved the message that not every criminal is a bad man. And not every free person deserves their freedom.

Everything that happened made complete sense and I respected/understood everything that both Carter and Kat did every step of the way. Nobody is perfect and we all make mistakes, but even their mistakes were understandable and realistic. To be completely blunt, I think it’s the sign of a very strong author when they’re able to write a 450 page book without a single thing in it that makes my eyes roll.

Current Price – $7.99
Length – 448 pages
Genre – Contemporary Romances

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Blood, Pain and Pleasure (Tales of Blood and Magic #1) by Nadine Mutas

Read Entire Review at Smexy Books

Review Excerpt:

A selfish bastard is a good way to describe Rhun at first. Let loose from the shadow world after being imprisoned for 20 years, he is ready for some blood, some pain and some pleasure. Merle didn’t have much choice – after her sister was abducted by the same type of demon that Rhun is, she decides to do something dangerous. Let Rhun out as long as he promises to help track her sister down. She isn’t prepared for how overwhelming he will be though.

This was a pretty fun paranormal romance. Rhun is a very arrogant, self-centered, alpha demon. Rhun is a fun demon who believably falls in love with Merle. While he starts out pushy and demon-ish, their romance turns sexy and nice. He is a good guy underneath, but he keeps enough of that demon attitude that makes him…still a demon.

Current Price – $3.99
Length – 322 pages
Genre – Paranormal Romances

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Arrow’s Hell by Chantal Fernando

Read Entire Review at Smexy Books

Review Excerpt:

The tortured guilt ridden hero is a favorite trope of mine especially when combined with the forbidden “little sister of best friend” aspect. Add in opposite attraction and wrap it all up in an MC romance and we have a winner folks! Since reading Dragon’s Lair, I have waited impatiently for Arrow’s chance at redemption and the woman who will fight for him and their future. Arrow’s Hell gives us Arrow’s and Anna’s story. Two strong-willed protagonists who fuss, fight, and complete each other long before even before they realize it. The push and pull is both exciting and frustrating as we watch this couple struggle to discover exactly what they want from one another.

The strength of this series is the characters. Vibrant personalities with realistic issues and problems that aren’t swept under the carpet or solved by taking a ride on the magic penis/ vagina. Strong women who can hold their own and have no issues with walking away and men who eventually learn how to hold on to the one person who loves them for who they are.

Overall, Arrow’s Hell gives readers the action, romance, angst, and drama that one comes to expect from this series and MC romances overall. Fernando doesn’t break Anna or reinvent Arrow in order to make them fit together but rather allows them to find their way at their own pace.

Current Price – $3.99
Length – 320 pages
Genre – Contemporary Romances

Get Arrow’s Hell on Amazon