Christmas Awards 2011

Monday, 30 April 2007

The Spellbound Bride

The Spellbound Bride/Theresa Myers/Triskelion/ebook

This mesmerising book begins with Sorcha willing her second bridegroom to take her maidenhead without dying, but unfortunately for the poor man he does not last until morning and she is labelled as a witch. That is the good news for us because it is the start of a wonderful novel set in Scotland in what was for the most part thought of as the Elizabethan age.

Her guardian goes hotfoot to the king to beg for another chance to prove that Sorcha is not a witch and can be bedded. Enter the hero, a mercenary who needs money to begin his life anew after his bride-to-be's betrayal in his brother's bed! But what Ian wants even more than money is a bride he can trust!! And Sorcha's apparent determination not to be bedded leads to a lot of mistrust but also some good fun for the reader.

All the ingredients for a cracking novel are here; excitement, danger, sexy encounters in the way this reader likes them! - and an added mystery. Just why do all her bridegrooms seem to be bewitched? There may even be a royal connection...this book is riveting, fantastic and gorgeous. Love it, love it, love it! A bouquet of red roses! Anne

Sunday, 29 April 2007

The Social Outcast

Wendy Soliman/The Social Outcast/ Robert Hale/ISBN 978-0-7090-8239-2/£1899/HB/224pgs

Soliman has created a delightful character in Eloise Hamilton. The illegitimate daughter of a wealthy banker, Eloise has accepted that she can never marry a man of high birth. Therefore, she will not allow herself to repine over the fact that the man she loves has become engaged to a woman she cannot like.
Eloise concentrates her love on her beloved horse and dog, treating Harry Benson-Smythe as simply the friend he has always been. She is at first flattered by the attention of a duke's son, who comes calling on her father, though she soon learns to dislike and distrust Lord Craven. He is in business with her father, but believes himself cheated and his pride leads him to a foolish attempt at revenge on Eloise's father. This places Eloise in a dangerous situation, from which she is extricated by Harry – but only with serious consequences.
Will Harry finally wake up the he fact that he is in love with the scamp who is forever in some scrape – and will Sir Henry Benson-Smythe accept a girl who is so far beneath them socially? Find out by reading this enchanting book! I enjoyed it and award five red roses, Anne

Friday, 27 April 2007

Not without Risk

Not Without Risk/Sarah Grimm/TriskelionPublishing/Ebook/Mystery-Romance

Paige Conroy is a photographer with a hidden past she doesn't want to reveal. But an old friend comes back to town and desperately needs Paige's help. Paige finds her friend dead hours later as she arrives at her friend's hotel room. Now pulled into a mystery of crime. Paige becomes a target. Now she must turn to a handsome stranger for protection...

Sergeant Justin Harrison has returned to the San Diego homicide division after an accident. And has decided nothing should stand in his way upon his return to solving crime. But things take an unexpected turn on his new case as he encounters Paige, a troubled beauty that has already become a target of the murderer.

Is it just the fear of the dangers of becoming the next victim or is it the fear of falling for Justin that overpowers Paige more?

Not Without Risk is hot and sexy and throughly exciting. Sarah Grimm has writen a real page turner full of crime, romance and sexual tension. A great story not to be missed! I Award five red roses. MP

Wednesday, 25 April 2007

A Lifetime Ago

A Lifetime Ago-The Phoenix Rebellion Series/Gail R. Delaney/Science Fiction-Romance/TriskelionPublishing/Ebook
A Lifetime Ago
Romance and Science Fiction is brought together in a world of love and the future of mankind. Gail has written a wonderful short story that is a prequel to The Phoenix Rebellion Series. A Lifetime Ago tells the beginning of a love affair between Nick Tanner and CJ Montgomery and what tore them apart for eight years. Though it may be a short story, I found it wonderful, sensual and exciting.
I award five red roses. MP

Monday, 23 April 2007

The Bakkar Bride

The Bakkar Bride/Jewel MCGuire/Triskelionpublishing/ebook
The Bakkar brothers are three princes of the Northern Provinces of Ra's Ak' Al Asad. Singeh, Barin & Lortin, and they are in search of a bride. Not so unusual perhaps, except that in their world they are looking for a female to share. It is the custom of the Rasalasian males to share a wife with their littermates, because these princes are a mixture of big cat and a human-like creature. At the conference of the inter-galactic Alliance they meet Mary Jane, who has been stolen from her time on earth and is seeking away to get back. Singeh is the first to feel desire for her and brings her to meet his brothers, but it is Lortin who helps her to escape the dominance of the Alliance.
This is a very different story, and is certainly eighteen plus. It is erotic, though there is a pleasant, even touching, love story at its heart, but the sexual scenes are explicit. However, for readers of science fiction, and lovers of erotica, this story of aliens looking for a new species of females to save their planet is very readable. I think for its genre it is excellent and deserves a rating of five red roses, but please be warned that it is explicit stuff! Anne

The Belles Dames Club

The Belles Dames Club/ Melinda Hammond/Robert Hale/ ISBN 978-0-7090-8272-9/£18.99 /223pgs/HB
Clarissa Wyckenham is en route to visit her stepmother Lady Wyckenham in London when she chances upon a young gentleman lying unconscious in a wood. He appears to have fallen from his horse but when she tries to help him he mistakes her for someone else. When he realises she is not Elizabeth his smile disappears and he censures her for being alone in the wood.
When Clarissa arrives at the house of the widowed Lady Wyckenham she discovers that something decidedly unusual is going on. Her stepmother has started a club for ladies, but it is a little more racy than would be thought proper if generally known. Clarissa immediately insists on joining, though as an unmarried lady this is scandalous behaviour, and as a member of the club becomes embroiled in some naughty adventures. Meanwhile, she has discovered the mysterious gentleman from the wood is the Earl of Alresford, who seems forever disapproving of all she does. Can Clarissa help rescue her stepmother from the clutches of an unpleasant gentlemen – and will the handsome earl show his true colours? This is a clever piece of Regency frivolity that will amuse from start to finish. A sparkling read. I recommend it and award five red roses. Morna

Mistaken Mistress

ISBN 13-978-0-263-84673-3
Kathryn Marchant left penniless and alone in the world, after the sudden death of her father, knows it would be of no use to contact her mother's family for help. Her father’s brother and his family take her in. She is cruelly treated and used as extra, unpaid servant in their household. Given barely enough food to eat she is thin and gaunt looking and with only poor clothes to wear is never likely to attract a husband, what can her future hold?
Kathryn, when she is not working hard, daydreams and fills her life with make- believe stories, mostly about a certain Lord Ravensmead. He is a notorious rake and would have no eyes for such a mousy young woman, she knows.
At a ball, given by Lady Finely, where Kathryn was attending with her cousin Lottie, as her companion, she inadvertently hides in a room with no light on but the reflection of the silvery moon shinning through a large window. Mesmerised by the pale moonlight she didn’t hear, until it was too late to escape, the door open and a man slip into the room. She pressed herself back against the wall but he heard her and coming towards her he took her in his arms and made love to her, mistaking her for his lover. Suddenly a lady erupts into the room, and sees Kathryn in the arms of her lover. This is the start of Kathryn’s downfall.
If her Aunt were to hear of this episode it would be disastrous for Kathryn’s future. Will Lord Ravensmead protect her name? Can he stop his furious lover from spreading the story of what she has seen?
Lord Ravensmead begins to seek Kathryn out and finds surprisingly, that the little sparrow as he nicknames her, has hidden depths, she intrigues him and he determines to find out more about her. What he finds horrifies him and he rescues her from her family, by hiring her as his Grandmother’s companion. Her Aunt and Uncle are furious and plan their revenge. Can Lord Ravensmead secure a real future for Kathryn? Perhaps by finding her a husband? Does he really want to?Read the book and find the answers, I did and enjoyed it
I award this book 4 roses. AS

Sunday, 22 April 2007

Chances Return

Chance's Return/Lucy Naylor Kubash/Triskelionpublishing/ebook/Inspirational Romance/

Prodigal son Chance McCord has had his fair share of tragedy in his life as well as a broken family. Returning home to North Star near the Grand Tetons of Wyoming. He becomes confronted with his shadowy past filled with painful regrets. But finds new hopes in Casey Girard, a young widow and mother. Compassionate Casey unexpectedly falls in love with the handsome Chance as she works on the ranch with her son, in a summer beyond her dreams...But will they learn how to have faith and trust in each other? To let love be a new beginning, and heal all their sorrows? Chance's return is becoming all the more a homecoming than he ever knew before.
Lucy Naylor Kubash has written a beautiful, touching, inspirational love story, that was a delight to read! I shall be really looking forward to more books by Lucy in the future. I award this five red roses. MP.

Stealing Amy

Stealing Amy

Stealing Amy/Randy Jeanne/Triskelionpublishing/ebook/

In an exciting romantic adventure. Amy Harrington's identity has been stolen and sets her life off track. Tracking down the thief's name. Amy heads out on one hell of a adventure to Mexico posing as Casey Carlisle the women behind the theft, to reclaim her life back. But Amy finds more than she's bargained for, as she gets a job with handsome Nick Cavenaugh who's got enough troubles of his own. Falling for Nick, can she trust him enough to tell him her true identity and all her troubles? Would it really hurt not to tell him at all? But Amy's finding him hard to resist as they become intangled in one hot predicament as they become stranded in a jungle.
Randy Jeanne has created a very exciting story that came alive from the very beginning. Filled with fun, sensuality, and humour. The characters were wonderful and believable. Stealing Amy is absolutely an adventure of romance that's not to be missed! I adward five red roses. MP.
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Sunday, 15 April 2007

Sold and Seduced!

Sold and Seduced/ Michelle Styles/Mills & Boon/ISBN 978-0-263-85170-0/£3.69/295pgs/ PB
Rome 68.B.C. When Lydia Veratia is accused of selling wine that was already promised to Fabius Aro, he demands a high price. He wants her for his bride and nothing else will do! Lydia believes he will be satisfied with a Sine manu marriage, which would mean that her father would remain her guardian. However, for Aro nothing but a cum manu marriage will do. Lydia resists, because she feels that he wants to own her and believes she is being sold in return for her father's honour.
Aro allows her to believe that it is a political marriage. Her father can help him to achieve his dream of becoming a senator and keeping a vow he made to his father's memory. Lydia longs for her freedom and Aro makes her a bargain – either she will beg for his kisses within seven days or he will give her her wish. Can Lydia resist or will she fall prey to this man's ruthless seduction?
This sensual, beautifully written and researched book is an absolute joy to read. I think it is equally as good as her first – The Gladiator's Honor – which has been short-listed for the RNA Romance prize. Award five red roses, Anne.

Saturday, 14 April 2007

Crazy For the Cowboy

Crazy For The Cowboy
(Series: Love At The Crazy H)/Cindy Spencer Pape/The Wild Rose Press/ebook/2007/

Rhiannon Jakobowski is a city girl who has just inherited a bookstore in Shirley, Wyoming. Her first claim at independence. But things are about to take an unexpected turn as she awakens to find the towns Sheriff Fitz Hall in her bed. If it were a dream it was a good one. But as the morning comes, this stranger becomes more then that. As Fitz claims the apartment as his and she must go, believing Rhiannon was up to nothing but tricks. He had another thing coming for Rhiannon was determind not to give up now and leave. But was she just determind to keep her new found independence or was she really crazy for the cowboy?

Cindy Spencer Pape writes a fun and entertaining, page turning story in Crazy For The Cowboy. Humorous and sensual and very romantic. A great read I highly recomend. I award this five red roses. MP

Saturday, 7 April 2007

MS Pendragon

MS Pendragon/ Michele Lang/Triskelion print/ ISBN 1-93338-74-36-8/ $6.99 'PB/ 242 pgs
King Arthur and his Knights of the round Table is the ultimate legend, the one we all love. I began reading MS Pendragon with some reserve, because the idea sounded unlikely. Mordred in New York – why?
I am happy to say that I was transported almost from the start, certainly from the time Gwen became Guinevere. This tale of magic and rewriting old legends is nothing shot of enthralling. I loved it from start to finish. Some purists might be unhappy at the way history (or legend) is rewritten, becoming more of a romance, but not me. I couldn't wait to travel back through time and bring Arthur back to life with a kiss. I cheered Gwen on as she took on the court bullies and won. She put right the wrong her earlier self had done, winning Arthur's love once more by the sacrifice she made. It was fresh, fun and compelling. Bring on the next in Mists Of Manhattan. Award? I give this a bouquet of red roses. This gal is special! Anne

Friday, 6 April 2007

Dark Pool

Dark Pool: Sequel of the Banners of Alba by Jen Black
Write Words, Inc
ISBN: 159433989
397 Pages

Once you start reading Jen Black’s historical romance, Dark Pool, you’ll find yourself unable to stop reading it as this talented storyteller transports you to a time gone by with plenty of deftness and skill and captivates her readers with a passionate romance you will find impossible to put down!

Finlay of Alba was forced to leave Alba without any protection in order to track down a young ward, Eba, who was stolen by raiders. Finlay must find her and free her from danger, but his search for her fails to come to fruition when he enters Lord Sitric’s stronghold in Dublin and he denies all knowledge of the girl.
Will Finlay be able to rescue Eba? Or will she have to succumb to a forced marriage?

Dark Pool is an intense, passionate and gripping read which captured my attention from the very first chapter. Well written, romantic and evocative, this is a must-read for fans of historical romance everywhere! Award five red roses. JB

Wednesday, 4 April 2007

At The Earl's Command

At the Earl's command/Marina Oliver/Robert Hale/ISBN 978-0-7090-8245-3/hb/£18.99/223p
Kate Byford's first meeting with Adam Rhydd, her grandfather's heir and soon to be Earl of Malvern, is less than fortuitous. Seeing her wearing an ill-fitting gown and trying to return escaped piglets to their pen, he mistakes her for a milkmaid. He is understandably annoyed when the goat she is trying to control butts him into a cowpat. Imagine Kate's embarrassment when she later discovers the indentity of the angry gentleman, and her indignation when, after her grandfather's death, she is told she must marry him or lose her inheritance!

No girl of spirit is going to put up with that and despite feelings for Adam that she cannot explain, she leads him a merry dance! Poor Adam has to rescue her from so many scrapes it is a wonder that he doesn't put her across his knee and spank her! Despite some serious moments and an underlying menace, this delightful Regency tumbles the reader through adventure after adventure to a satisfactory end. This writer has to be one of the very best Romance authors around. I give her five red roses and look forward to reading her again soon! Anne

Tuesday, 3 April 2007

Love's Beguiling Healer

Love's Beguiling Healer/ Angela Verdenius/ebook
Futureistic-Sci-Fi-Romance/Wings ePress. Inc

Felys male Illam, and Argon healer Tera are two enemies brought together to stop their race from extinction. But can they get past their dislikes, to bring two worlds together and keep from dangers and death?
Angela Verdenius writes an enchanted story filled with cat-like beings. A tale of strong characters, sensuality, danger and meaning. With love and magic that brings enemies together and saves their species from extinction.
Love's Beguiling Healer is part of the Heart and Soul Series. And is not to be missed. I give this adventurous futuristic romance a four rose rating. MP.

Sunday, 1 April 2007

The Silver Blade

Silver Blade/Michelle Levigne/Triskelion/ebook
The Silver Blade is a wonderful story of magic, duty and courage. The Kreefa people were resident in Britain when the Romans fought Boudicca and her story is caught up in theirs. To understand this tale of magic, you must accept that the Keefa people are able to change from human form into wolves at will, easily and without pain. Their enemies are the Lost Ones, who have been tainted by evil magic and the man-wolves – what have become known as werewolves.
Casida is the Red Queen. She has the power to calm her people during the Fever with her mind and her scent. She needs a mate or husband to help her in her fight against the man-wolves, who are controlled by renegade Kreefa. These enemies plan to take over the tribe, but they are evil and Casida must fight and destroy them. To do this she needs the help of Ansgar, the Druid warrior and his enchanted silver blade, but when they meet she is drawn to him in a way she has not been before – though she did have a husband she believes dead. Ansgar loves and desires her, but Casida is afraid to reveal her secret to him, for if he knew that she was able to become a wolf at will she fears that he would despise her. When he does discover her secret it threatens to tear them apart. However, in this beautifully written story of battles, magic and passion, the power of love will always overcome evil.
Michelle Levigne is a talented writer who makes it easy to believe in her tales of legend and enchantment, her powers of description spellbinding in themselves. I was caught from page one and can truly say that I lost myself in a land of Druids, Romans and the wonderful people that are the Kreefa. I award this book five red roses, Anne

The Mesalliance

The Mesalliance/ Fenella-Jane Miller/Robert Hale/ ISBN 978-0-7090-8224-8/ £1899/ hb/224 pages.

This sparkling Regency is a must for all lovers of the genre. Lady Allegra Humphrey, a lady of high birth and rather too much pride, is suffering from lack of sleep after the horrific suicide of her beloved father. However, fate has not done with her yet and after nine months of mourning she and her twin brother Richard discover that they have been living on the charity of Mr Silas Tremayne. A wealthy cit of all things and as such beneath the notice of Lady Allegra and her brother the earl! However, Silas has an enchanting daughter who steals away Richard's heart and Allegra is drawn into a situation she at first finds intolerable. Can she overcome her pride and recognise the prompting of a heart she had hitherto believed cold?

With a satisfactory number of period references to inexpressibles and half boots, and of course the high perch phaeton, this book has a nice Regency flavour and bowls along at a spanking pace. An underlying threat of menace from someone who does not wish to see her happily resolved gives the romance a further twist. This book held me from page one and I recommend it as a cracking read. I award five red roses, Anne