Romance Reviews | Even More Reading Goodness

This past week I've been a bit slower on the reading of books since it is finals time between papers, exams, and presentations so my time is crunched. I did, however, read enough to make some of you continue to curse me as you add a few more books to your "To Read" list. Remember that I'm always up to suggestions and you can drop them off on any of my social channels, most people tend to inbox me on Tumblr. 

Not Yet Released 

1.  Chaos and Moonlight (Order of the Nines Book 1) by A. D. Marrow

Recommend: Highly
Purchase Link: 
Amazon or Barnes and Noble
Publication DateMay 6, 2015
My ReviewSo wickedly in love with this book! Who doesn't love sexy vampires, passionate sex, adventure, and the promise of falling in love? Chaos and Moonlight is the first book in the Order of the Nines series which centers mostly around an eight hundred year old vampire, Taris, and a brilliant doctor, Sarah. The premise of this book is that vampires are dying out and can't turn humans as the human body rejects the change, ultimately killing the vessel. Sarah and her partner have made groundbreaking steps forward in their medical research which could help the vampires situation. 

Sarah and Taris are attracted to each other instantly. Taris actually admonishes his cock's response to Sarah which made me have a good laugh. Both of them are witty and verbally spar, mostly due to Taris purposely pushing Sarah to lash out because he's struggling to fight his attraction to her. Taris is really impressive with his sense of responsibility, his maturity, his fierce loyalty, his humor, and his cleverness. I found myself liking Taris as soon as he appeared. Sarah is an intelligent, passionate, blunt, and very modern woman. I liked her, quite a lot. Taris and Sarah together made me laugh, pant, sigh, and smile. 

My overall star rating is a 4.5 for the impress verbiage, the natural flow of the plot, the awesome characters and their development, and for making me love Taris. This novel weaves a vivid tapestry of fantasy, sex, love, and adventure. I'm looking forward to the next book on the series!

Teaser: "Okay, what to say? Um. 'Hello, I'm a vampire.' Fuck, that's stupid. Eh. 'Hi, my name is Taris, and I saw your interview, and I would like to hire you.' Yeah, explain that one. 'I'm eight hundred years old, and I need you to save a race of people who have been turned into horror movie villains and romance heroes from extinction.'" He chuckled. "Not likely."

2. Unworthy Heart (The Donnellys) by Dorothy F. Shaw

Recommend: Highly
Purchase Link: Amazon or Barnes and Noble 
Publication DateMay 5, 2015
My Review
Oh yeah, I'm totally on the Dorothy Shaw fan train thanks to this story and the sexy Ryan Donnelly. They say you don't really know what you need until you've had it, tasted it, and felt it. For Ryan and Maiya this is most certainly so. They are quite different on the outside, Maiya being more of a rocker chick while Ryan's a bit of classic corporate, but it's the chemistry between the two that makes them work. They can match wits, be comfortable teasing one another, and seamlessly fall into one another's lives. Sometimes the greatest leap of faith reaps the greatest reward and that is just what Ryan and Maiya have to figure out. 

While this is my first novel by Dorothy Shaw, I had no issue enjoying the novel. Her writing style is liquid, allowing the reader to easily drop into the story and intake it all. Shaw pointedly shows shades of grey with Ryan and Maiya, making them more than one dimensional characters which I loved! Ryan is a single father with a good heart. He is dominant enough to be a wicked dirty talker who takes charge in the bedroom and comfortable enough in his own skin to be a complete goofball. I loved Ryan, really freaking loved him. Maiya is a bit edgier, tattooed, sassy, and sarcastic. She has childhood hangups that still touch her today. The two balance one another out and push each other. The sex between them is explosive, the verbals spars are hilarious, and the chase is as good as the fall. 

I'm not a fan of blowing smoke up an author's rear end which could be part of the reason why I was gifted with this ARC in exchange for an honest review. I genuinely enjoyed the story and had a hard time putting it down to return to my job. The stars fall at a solid 5 out of 5 due to the easy way the story takes shape, the growth of the characters as individuals and together as a couple, and for the deliciously sinful sex. I look forward to reading the next book in the series, hoping for Jimmy's story because I love him and his tattooed self!
Teaser: Taking her hand, Ryan led her up the aisle toward the exit. "Do you have any idea how many times I jacked off the past two weeks thinking of you?" 
She stopped short, halting his forward motion. "Fucking hell, Ryan!" She put her hand over her mouth and looked around at the other patrons, and then began in a lower tone. "Do you have any idea how hot that is? Jesus, I think I just had a mini orgasm."

Already Released 

3. Punctured, Bruised, and Barely Tattooed by Jade C. Jamison

Recommend: Moderately
Purchase Link: Amazon or Barnes and Noble
Publication DateSeptember 30, 2014
My ReviewI really wish the stars allowed for half stars because 3.5 star rating. The overview drew me in and I really loved the cover art. I find I am a sucker for broken people growing and finding salvation in love which is why I wanted to read this. The overall sentiment I have after finishing this book is it could have been better, more flesh to the plot which would have allowed the character connection to be stronger, but it didn't pain me to read. In fact, I finished this in under three hours. 

I liked several things about this book. I liked that Stone wasn't an obnoxious prick, but instead was a genuinely good guy. He knew what he was about and that was that. I liked that Kory didn't want pity and so slowly unloaded herself into Stone, I also liked how she didn't change her attitude about him once she found out he was a millionaire and ex-rocker. I liked that there was a happy ending because I have enough letdowns in my real life and don't need any from my romance novels.

I have a few complaints that should be taken to heart before choosing to read this. While there is an attraction between the characters, the development of the characters and that attraction is quite weak. I bring this up as a complaint because if you compare it to a novel like Since Drew by J Nathan or This Man by Jodi Ellen Malaps, this book falls short. Another complaint to note is how little the plot actually moves. I feel the author could have weaved a better story if there were more moving parts. Having said all of this, the story is overall enjoyable and Stone is kind of easy to like.
Teaser: As if on cue, the waitress delivered their drinks and asked if they were ready to order. Stone said, "We just need one more minute." Then he looked at Kory. "What'll it be?"
She shrugged. "I don't know. Maybe a combination?" 
Stone's eyes grew wide, and it took Kory a few seconds to realize he'd done it in mock horror. "You know what that says about you, don't you?" 
Kory frowned. "Oh, you're so funny. What does it say about me?"
"That you're hungry. Tell me what you don't like on pizza."

4. Art of Cunning (Crookshollow Foxes Book 1) by Steffanie Holmes

Recommend: Moderately High
Purchase Link: Amazon 
Publication DateApril 14, 2015
My Review
There's a massive cliffhanger that leaves you shouting profanities. Ryan and Alex meet at his home when she arrives to collect art pieces for the art exhibit. Ryan couldn't get away from Alex fast enough, coming off rude and cold. With a twist of events, the two come to common ground and get together. Alex is sweet, funny, brash, and good hearted. Ryan is clever, cunning, passionate, and guarded. I liked them both and didn't anticipate the ending to be what it was. Overall, the read earned a solid four stars from me for the creativity, the content, and the characters.
Teaser: "What? I just walk a fox inside? What do I tell Callahan? 'Don't worry, sir. The fox is just another part of the exhibition. Raynard is experimenting with naturalism- this fox here is his attempt to place the viewer inside the painting...' No, Ryan, that won't work." 

5. Monster Chef by Margaret McHeyzer

Recommend: Moderately High
Purchase Link: Amazon 
Publication DateMarch 18, 2015
My Review
Love breathes life into a person allowing them to start living and stop just existing. Holly and Pierre have the worst first meeting ever. They work together at a restaurant and after battling it out because they push each other, a shift in their relationship happens. As the story progresses things from both of their pasts are shelled out to add the right amount of shading to each character. 

Holly is independent, loving, fiery, and a survivor. She is a good balance for Pierre. Pierre is egotistical, condescending, broken, passionate, and possessive. I liked them for one another because they save each other, love being the ultimate salvation for them both. The sex between Holly and Pierre is hot enough to burn you, you've been warned. The story takes shape through each page skillfully, much as clay does in a master sculptor's hands.
Teaser: Holly may think she doesn't belong to me, but she does. I'll just let her believe whatever her silly female bran wants to think. I know the truth, and that's all that matters.

6. Serendipity by Janet Nissenson 

Recommend: Moderately High
Purchase Link: Amazon or Barnes and Noble
Publication DateDecember 10, 2013
My Review
Serendipity is defined as the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way. Julia and Nathan were led to one another on enough occasions for their pull to take over. The attraction leads to off the charts passion and for Nathan to give a piece of himself to Julia even as he leaves her. It would seem that Fate destined for much more than just one night of uninhibited lust as Julia ends up in California as Nathan's newest interior designer. 

Julia is so easy to like because she's such a good woman. She's classy, confident, clever, sweet, and down-to-earth. Julia can't help but be attracted to Nathan and his very possessive nature towards her doesn't make it easier for her to do the 'right' thing. Nathan can't forget Julia and his obsession with her only worsens when she begins working for him. Nathan is witty, carnal, tender, sweet, and an all around good guy in a crap situation. He tries to do the 'right' thing but can't fight the pull or his craving for Julia. 

I found that the story really pulls at emotions. You feel for both Nathan and Julia. You want them to have the ultimate salvation after the constant push and pull and heartache. Julia and Nathan were written in such a way that they were clearly meant for one another. In the end, the dust settles in all the right places to wrap up the story with a bright pink bow giving the reader a much desired happy ending.
Teaser: He pressed his hot mouth against the side of her neck, running his tongue around her ear. "Next, he wants to mark you right here so that everyone will know you're his. So that no one else would dare to do any of these nasty things to you, because he's the only one who has that right."