Tag: Avon

Review: A Duke by Default by Alyssa Cole

Posted August 3, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 10 Comments

Review: A Duke by Default by Alyssa ColeA Duke by Default
by Alyssa Cole
Series: Reluctant Royals #2
Published by Harper Collins, Avon on July 31, 2018
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Point of View:Alternating Third Person
Pages: 374
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Add It: Goodreads
four-stars

Award-winning author Alyssa Cole’s Reluctant Royals series continues with a woman on a quest to be the heroine of her own story and the duke in shining armor she rescues along the way

New York City socialite and perpetual hot mess Portia Hobbs is tired of disappointing her family, friends, and—most importantly—herself. An apprenticeship with a struggling swordmaker in Scotland is a chance to use her expertise and discover what she’s capable of. Turns out she excels at aggravating her gruff silver fox boss…when she’s not having inappropriate fantasies about his sexy Scottish burr.

Tavish McKenzie doesn’t need a rich, spoiled American telling him how to run his armory…even if she is infuriatingly good at it. Tav tries to rebuff his apprentice, and his attraction to her, but when Portia accidentally discovers that he’s the secret son of a duke, rough-around-the-edges Tav becomes her newest makeover project.

Forging metal into weapons and armor is one thing, but when desire burns out of control and the media spotlight gets too hot to bear, can a commoner turned duke and his posh apprentice find lasting love?

I got this book for review and was looking forward to digging into the story because it was receiving so many great reviews all over the place. Add on top of all that, it was a diverse romance and I was all in. Portia Hobbs is on her way to Scotland for an apprenticeship with a swordsman that will hopefully make her grow into the kind of person that has her shit together. She wants to stop being such a disappointment to her family, to her friends and most importantly, to herself. It’s long past the time that she grew up and started making her own way in life and she’s hoping that her thirst for knowledge, along with helping this struggling armory will help her with that plan. Meeting Tavish McKenzie, getting to know Tav and helping him through a life change that she brought about took Portia by surprise. Never in a million years did she think she’d fall head over heels in love with a brutish Scotsman who overwhelmed her senses at every turn but that’s what happened and boy did I enjoy watching Portia grow and fall in love with the man that would end up being her forever person. Tavish knows full out that he’s not the easiest person to get along with and his attraction to the apprentice he didn’t even want is a thorn in his side but hell if he knows how to get out from under all of the desire he has for Portia. He’s a small town lad who wants to do all that he can for the people in his town so when Portia finds out that he’s the actual Duke of Edinburg, his life takes on even more complications that have far-reaching consequences. Learning all that he can so that he can protect those that mean the world to him has become his biggest priority and boy did I love the hell out of him for that. Tavish is my book boyfriend of the week because holy hell, he was the bomb. On top of the fact that he was super sexy with a Scottish accent that melted me at the knees? He was also a really stand up guy who was loved and who loved hard. He was also the kind of guy that was quick to try to make up for being a dumbass and I really appreciated his thought processes when he realizes how big a bonehead he is. There was no long ass separation that made me want to pull my hair out and when Tavish realizes he is in love with Portia, the way that he went about making sure she knew made my heart melt. I absolutely adored the way that he declared his love for her and the way that he apologized for being an asshole. He was a great Duke and I loved the changes he was making in the modern aristocracy. This is who I pictured when casting Tavish in the movie of this book (because of course I think there should be a movie for this book)…I think it’s pretty damn perfect. Overall, this book was a great introduction into Alyssa Cole’s work and I’m pretty stoked to read more books by her. I enjoy her writing style and the way that I connected with her characters. I loved Portia just as much as I loved Tav and I also really loved her sister and friends. They were a great support system and Johan? Gah, I can’t wait for him and Nya to meet. The only thing that I wished we got from this book before it ended was more of a resolution with Portia and her parents. I wish we had gotten a scene where she told her parents off about how they made her feel instead of just Reggie but other than that, this book is a great book and I definitely recommend.
Final Grade
4.25 out of 5
Buy the Book
AMAZON || BARNES & NOBLE || GOOGLE BOOKS || KOBO || THE RIPPED BODICE
Reluctant Royals Series
four-stars

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Buddy Review: Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

Posted March 14, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 2 Comments

Buddy Review: Burn for Me by Ilona AndrewsBurn for Me
by Ilona Andrews
Series: Hidden Legacy #1
Published by Harper Collins, Avon on October 28th 2014
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Point of View:First Person
Pages: 400
Format: eBook
Source: Gifted
Add It: Goodreads
four-half-stars

#1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews launches a brand new Hidden Legacy series, in which one woman must place her trust in a seductive, dangerous man who sets off an even more dangerous desire…

Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career—a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn’t sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she’s kidnapped by Connor “Mad” Rogan—a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.

Rogan’s after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she’s getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world.

Burn for Me is the first book in the Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews and it really sets up this series nicely. Nevada Baylor is a private investigator who takes her job very seriously. She’s the head of her family PI firm but when her employees are all in school, she’s the only full time employee that can actually do the work. Her latest case was forced on her and she hasn’t a prayer of surviving it but she has to try to figure things out anyway because her family is at stake. Nevada will do anything for her family. When the case brings Mad Rogan into her life and he kidnaps her, Nevada finds herself partnered up with the head of House Rogan, who also happens to be Hurucan, the guy that can break cities. They’re partnered up and going after Adam Pierce, a Prime Pyrokinetic, who is trying to burn down Houston. Something bigger than Adam Pierce is going on and they’re determined to figure it out and stop the bad guys from harming anymore people. Rowena: Alright, Ames….spill. How much did you freaking love this book and Mad Rogan? Ames:: OMG I loved this book so much I jumped right into the second one…and as I’m writing this I’ve already started the third! haha I love the Kate Daniels series and Ilona Andrews has definitely created another heroine I can get behind! For Nevada Baylor, family is everything. And that remains true for her character. She’s so strong and kick-ass and awesome. And every great heroine needs an awesome partner and Rogan definitely has the makings of a great hero. He’s a Prime…meaning super powerful and he’s definitely an alpha hero. But he’s in no way an alpha-hole. I heart Rogan. So bad. LOL Seriously, he gives me heart eyes. But the book isn’t just about Nevada and Rogan. Nevada’s whole family plays a big part in the story and I loved all of them. Her 70 year old mechanic grandma, her sniper mother, her gifted cousins and younger sisters. They’re all awesome. What about you Wena? I’m so glad you got me to read this book! Rowena: Oh man, did I love this book. I’m super thrilled that Holly has been on me to get this book read because wasn’t it just the best book you’ve read this month? Gah, I loved the heck out of this book. There wasn’t much that I didn’t like about it. I loved Nevada, Rogan, Nevada’s family and the way that they functioned as a unit. When we start to get to know Rogan better and better, I thought he was such an asshole but I still loved him to pieces. I wasn’t expecting how funny this book was going to be. I prefer my paranormal books to be on the more serious side and even though this isn’t a paranormal book, I thought that it would be a little more serious but holy cow, the humor had me up late into the night giggliing like a little school girl. Brenna came into my room and told me to knock it off because I was giggling so much that it was creeping her out. She was right. I was giggling a lot but I don’t care that I was creeping her out because I had a good ol’ time with this one. When Rogan called Augustine Pancakes? I about died laughing. When he couldn’t get over her circle work? I couldn’t stop laughing. When they were flirting back and forth and she told him she wasn’t going to handle his snake? I laughed and laughed and laughed. Gah. I can’t say that I loved this book enough. It gets all of my heart eyes. Ames: Oh yes, the humour was excellent! I liked that for sure. Even Rogan’s attitude about killing people – I know this is awful to say but it is fiction – it was somewhat funny, especially when he uses a building to get the job done. Like he just doesn’t give a shit. And that’s why this book works. Yes Rogan is all super-powerful but Nevada brings him back down to earth. She’s reminds me of his humanity and keeps it real for him. She’s equal in that way. The other thing is she keeps him on his toes. She’s full of surprises. Honestly, I can’t think of anything about this book I didn’t like. Even the mystery surrounding Adam Pierce was engaging. The world-building was excellent and the way Andrews describes settings and scenes, I could picture everything so clearly in my head. Rowena: I agree. It’s very easy for me to read quickly through scenes where there’s a lot of description, scenes that kind of set something up and I’ll gloss over scenes but I read every single word and enjoyed every single word that was written in this book. Ilona Andrews has the magic writing stick because I was wrapped up in everything from beginning to end. Adam Pierce was an interesting antagonist and his whole story was interesting as well. I was really curious to read more about this shady business he was a part of because with the ending, you just know that there’s gonna be more drama to come. This stuff isn’t over and I’m so.here.for.it. Overall, the book was wonderful. The world was magical and the characters were the best. I give this book a 5 out of 5. You? Ames: Oh I liked that Adam’s story was wrapped up extremely satisfyingly but that there was a whole bigger arc to the story that joins all three books. I’m looking forward to finding out more in book 3! I’m stingy with my 5s so I’m giving this one a 4.5 out of 5. Still a high recommendation from me!​
Final Grades
Ames: 4.5 out of 5 Rowena: 5 out of 5
four-half-stars

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Book Boyfriend of the Week: Connor “Mad” Rogan

Posted March 9, 2018 by Rowena in Features | 4 Comments

This week’s book boyfriend is someone that is responsible for the reading hangover that I’ve been in since Monday of this week. I have not been able to move on from his set of books and it’s all because I love the hell out him and his heroine and the world that was created for them to live in. Mad Rogan is the hero in the Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews and he’s a complete dreamboat. He’s an asshole but he’s an asshole that lives by a code and the more I got to know him, the more I fell in love with him. Book Boyfriend of the Week: Connor “Mad” RoganBurn for Me
by Ilona Andrews
Series: Hidden Legacy #1
Also in this series: Burn for Me
Published by Harper Collins, Avon on October 28th 2014
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 400
Format: eBook
Source: Gifted
Add It: Goodreads

#1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews launches a brand new Hidden Legacy series, in which one woman must place her trust in a seductive, dangerous man who sets off an even more dangerous desire…

Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career—a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn’t sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she’s kidnapped by Connor “Mad” Rogan—a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.

Rogan’s after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she’s getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world.

Connor “Mad” Rogan is a Prime Telekinetic. He’s a magic powerhouse who can level cities and has leveled cities while working for the US Army. He’s mostly known for the destruction he brought upon Mexico and he’s known the world over for what he has and can do with his magic. He’s a bad ass who is deadly but what I loved about him was that he was also pretty normal and could definitely make fun of himself.
“Yes, I’m a hermit. Mostly I brood,” Mad Rogan said. “Also, I’m very good at wallowing in self-pity. I spend my days steeped in melancholy, looking out the window. Occasionally a single tear quietly rolls down my cheek.”
As deadly as Connor was, he was also the biggest flirt whenever Nevada Baylor was around and I freaking loved it.
“He glanced at me, his eyes dark. “Would you rather talk about your dream?” “No.” “Considering that I was featured in it, I think I deserve to know the particulars. Were my clothes missing because we were in bed? Was I touching you?” He glanced at me. His voice could’ve melted the clothes off my body. “Were you touching me?”
Hahaha, what a great scene this was. And so was this next one.
“Did you send an escort with my family?” “Yes. They’re a target.” “How did you know they would be leaving?” “My people saw them load up, called me, and I told them to follow.” Duh. “Thank you.” “You’re welcome. I plan to hold them hostage until you sleep with me.” I stumbled. He turned and gave me a brilliant, impossibly handsome smile. “Just kidding.” Damn it.”
I swear there are so many reasons to love this guy and you should read the Hidden Legacy series to find out all of those reasons. This series rocked my socks. For real. This was me every time Rogan was on the scene.
Yep. That’s right. Here’s what Mad Rogan looked like in my head.

Buy the Book

Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews October 28, 2014 Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | Kobo

Series Order

Until next week…enjoy!
Who are your book boyfriends for the week? Anyone I should meet?

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Book Boyfriend of the Week: Rex Galbraith

Posted February 9, 2018 by Rowena in Features | 0 Comments

This week’s book boyfriend is one that I thought was going to annoy the snot out of me but I ended up loving the heck out of. Rex Galbraith, is a man who is never going to marry. He’s seen the hell that marriage has wrecked on his immediate family and he doesn’t want anything to do with any of it. When he meets the woman that ruined his week, got him socked in the face by one of his good friends, he really doesn’t want to have anything to do with love or marriage but things don’t always work out the way that one thinks it will, right? Here’s his book information. Book Boyfriend of the Week: Rex GalbraithThe Trouble with True Love
by Laura Lee Guhrke
Series: Dear Lady Truelove #2
Published by Harper Collins, Avon on January 30th 2018
Genres: Historical, Romance
Pages: 384
Add It: Goodreads

Dear Lady Truelove,

I am a girl of noble family, but I am painfully shy, especially in my encounters with those of the opposite sex . . .

For Clara Deverill, standing in for the real Lady Truelove means dispensing advice on problems she herself has never managed to overcome. There’s nothing for it but to retreat to a tearoom and hope inspiration strikes between scones. It doesn’t—until Clara overhears a rake waxing eloquent on the art of “honorable” jilting. The cad may look like an Adonis, but he’s about to find himself on the wrong side of Lady Truelove.

Rex Galbraith is an heir with no plans to produce a spare. He flirts with the minimum number of eligible young ladies to humor his matchmaking aunt, but Clara is the first to ever catch his roving eye. When he realizes that Clara—as Lady Truelove—has used his advice as newspaper fodder, he’s infuriated. But when he’s forced into a secret alliance with her, he realizes he’s got a much bigger problem—because Clara is upending everything Rex thought he knew about women—and about himself. . . .

Seeing Rex fall in love with Clara Deverill in The Trouble with True Love by Laura Lee Guhrke was sweet and Rex was a giant ball of charming and I was here for it all. His charming personality and the fierceness of his love for Clara are why he’s my book boyfriend for this week. This is who I pictured while I was reading all about Rex Galbraith. He’s got that devil may care attitude and that smug little grin that is sexy as all get out. If you haven’t read his book, you should change that because the book is highly entertaining and the romance between Rex and Clara sparked with a lot of chemistry that you don’t want to miss. It’s great, I promise.

Buy the Book

The Trouble with True Love by Laura Lee Guhrke January 30, 2018 Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Series Order

Until next week…enjoy!

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Book Boyfriend of the Week: Mick Trewlove from Beyond Scandal and Desire

Posted January 26, 2018 by Rowena in Features | 0 Comments

Lorraine Heath never fails to write fantastic historical romances that always melt my heart. Her stories are always fun, funny and super sweet. I’m always laughing, happy sighing and far often than not, I tear up or flat out cry. That was the case with getting to know this week’s book boyfriend. Mick Trewlove grew up in squalor. When he was pretty young, he discovered that he was the product of an affair that a Duke had with an unknown woman. As he’s trying to make a name for himself, become his own man, the consequences that his father should have paid, are being paid by himself and that really grates on Mick because he shouldn’t have to pay for his father’s sins.

He’d climbed as far as he could up the social ladder. To reach the higher rungs, others had to fall—far and spectacularly, like fireworks burning out on their way down. He would be paid what he was owed. And God’s mercy on anyone who stood in his way.

So he gets angry…and he plans to get even. Holy cow, Mick’s story was such a fascinating story because there was so much at play there. There was his revenge against his father, the story of him getting to know his brother, falling in love with his heroine but then there was the background story of the way that the nobility took care of their bastards back in the day. I found all of that so interesting and Mick’s evolution from the man we met at the beginning and then the man he grew to be at the end…two completely different and yet completely lovable men. Beyond Scandal & Desire by Lorraine Heath Series: Sins for All Seasons #1 Genres: Historical, Romance Publisher: Harper Collins, Avon
At birth, Mick Trewlove, the illegitimate son of a duke, was handed over to a commoner. Despite his lowly upbringing, Mick has become a successful businessman, but all his wealth hasn’t satisfied his need for revenge against the man who still won’t acknowledge him. What else can Mick do but destroy the duke’s legitimate son—and woo the heir’s betrothed into his own unloving arms . . . Orphaned and sheltered, Lady Aslyn Hastings longs for a bit of adventure. With her intended often preoccupied, Aslyn finds herself drawn to a darkly handsome entrepreneur who seems to understand her so well. Surely a lady of her station should avoid Mick Trewlove. If only he weren’t so irresistible . . . As secrets are about to be exposed, Mick must decide if his plan for vengeance is worth risking what his heart truly desires.
Mick is the oldest of Ettie Trewlove’s brood and he loves his family to distraction. He’s got 3 brothers and 2 sisters. His brothers each have their own thing going on while his sister Gillie owns her own bar. His youngest sister Fancy wants to own her own bookstore and wants Mick to procure her a shop so we’ll see if that ever happens but what makes Mick stand out above the rest of his siblings is how he’s the leader of the family. He takes great care of his Mom and younger siblings and what I really liked about his story was watching him learn to let someone else care for him. It wasn’t easy and he kept secrets from the one person who was falling head over heels in love with him but after some bumps in the road, Mick gets it right and he gets the girl. Here is how I pictured Mick with his beard and striking blue eyes. Hot stuff, right? Gah. Mick’s book was fantastic and getting to know him was a real treat. If you haven’t read his book, put it on your TBR list because it’s a delightful romance that will definitely melt your heart.

Buy the Book

Beyond Scandal & Desire by Lorraine Heath January 30, 2018 Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

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