Category Archives: HarlequinMira

Review: Big Sky Wedding by Linda Lael Miller

Title: Big Sky Wedding by Linda Lael Miller
Parable Series Book Five
Publisher: Harlequin
Imprint: Mira
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 384 pages
Book Rating: B

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley

Summary:

The “First Lady of the West,” #1 New York Times bestselling author Linda Lael Miller, cordially invites you to Parable, Montana—where love awaits

Wedding bells are ringing in Parable, Montana, but Brylee Parrish hasn’t enjoyed the sound since being jilted at the altar by Hutch Carmody. She’s over Hutch now, and running a multimillion-dollar business is challenging enough for this country gal. So she should avoid falling head over boot heels for A-list actor Zane Sutton. He’s come home to his rodeo roots, but Hollywood lured him away once and just might again. Yet everything about him, from his easy charm to his concern for his young half brother, seems too genuine to resist….

Zane didn’t come to Parable for love—but count on a spirited woman to change a jaded cowboy’s mind. Problem is, Brylee’s not convinced he’s here to stay. Good thing he’s determined to prove to her, kiss by kiss, that she’s meant to be his bride.

The Review:

Big Sky Wedding, is another sweetly romantic installment in Linda Lael Miller’s charming Parable, Montana series. More than just a romance, this engaging story is a wonderful story of new beginnings for Zane Sutton and his younger half-brother Nash. It is also the long-awaited romance for Brylee Parrish, who was unceremoniously dumped at the altar by Hutch Carmody in Big Sky Mountain.

Zane Sutton leaves behind the bright lights of Hollywood for a simpler life when he moves to the ranch he co-owns with his brother Landry. Before the dust has time to settle, Zane’s half-brother Nash and spunky yet loving housekeeper Cleo arrive. Adding to the chaos is his attraction to neighbor Brylee Parrish. He and Brylee have an instant attraction to one another but neither is looking for a romance. As their paths keep crossing, the simmering desire between them becomes too hot to resist.

Big Sky Wedding is a bit of a slow starter where the romance between Brylee and Zane is concerned. Instead the novel mainly focuses on Zane (which is no hardship since I LOVE his character) as he begins his new life in Three Trees. Despite his acting career, Zane is surprisingly down to earth and a little embarrassed over his formerly lavish lifestyle. Growing up, he and Landry were close but they have been estranged for several years. While Zane regrets the distance between them, the two men have little in common so when Landry calls him out of the blue, Zane knows something is up.

That something would be their twelve year old half-brother Nash. Their irresponsible father dropped Nash off at Landry’s just as Landry was about to leave on a business trip. Zane gladly takes Nash under his wing and while their relationship is a little strained at first, they quickly bond as Zane begins to get the ranch in order. There are a few tense moments between them due to their differing opinions of their father, but Zane is quite patient and understanding with Nash. I really enjoyed this part of the storyline as it really showcases Zane’s loving and easygoing personality.

I had difficulty warming up to Brylee. I liked her but I thought she was a little immersed in self-pity for most of the story. Her interactions with her niece and nephew were wonderful and I really enjoyed how involved she was in their lives. However, when it comes to Zane, Brylee is pretty prickly and her defenses are firmly in place. She is a little judgmental about Zane and she quickly jumps to unwarranted conclusions about him because he is an actor. Of course this is a defense mechanism designed to keep Zane at a distance and protect her heart. While Brylee may have made peace with Hutch, she is afraid of getting hurt again and her attitude towards Zane reflects this.

The romance between Brylee and Zane was non-existent for much of Big Sky Wedding. There are definitely sparks between them but the novel centers mainly on Brylee and Zane as individuals. This makes their relationship feel rushed and their declarations of love a little hard to believe. Their transition to lovers occurs very late in the book and most of their dating takes place off screen but a lovely epilogue perfectly wraps up their romance.

With Big Sky Wedding Linda Lael Miller brings readers another beautiful novel about family, friendship and love. The characters and setting are warmly inviting and the storyline is refreshingly drama free. Intriguing glimpses of Landry and newcomer Ria Manning set the stage for the next installment of the Parable, Montana series and I am eagerly awaiting their story.

Please click HERE to read my reviews of the other novels in the series.

2 Comments

Filed under Big Sky Wedding, Contemporary, Harlequin, HarlequinMira, Linda Lael Miller, Parable Series, Rated B, Review, Romance

Review: Love Overdue by Pamela Morsi

Title: Love Overdue by Pamela Morsi
Publisher: Harlequin
Imprint: Mira
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 432 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley

Summary:

Meet Dorothy Jarrow: devotedly unsexy librarian

Buttoned-up book lover DJ is all sensible shoes, drab skirts and studious glasses. After an ill-advised spring-break-fueled fling left her mortified, she’s committed to her prim and proper look. When she’s hired by a rural library in middle-of-nowhere Kansas, she finally has the lifestyle to match—and she can’t wait to get her admin on.

But it’s clear from day one that the small-town library is more interested in circulating rumors than books. DJ has to organize her unloved library, win over oddball employees and avoid her flamboyant landlady’s attempts to set her up with the town pharmacist. Especially that last part—because it turns out handsome Scott Sanderson is her old vacation fling! She is not sure whether to be relieved or offended when he doesn’t seem to recognize her. But with every meeting, DJ finds herself secretly wondering what it would be like to take off her glasses, unpin her bun and reveal the inner vixen she’s been hiding from everyone—including herself.

The Review:

Pamela Morsi’s Love Overdue is an absolutely fabulous novel and I savored every word of this entertaining and engaging story. This captivating romance is full of charming and quirky characters that are incredibly life-life and likable. The small town setting gives the story a warm, cozy feeling and adds to the story’s appeal.

Scott Sanderson and D.J. (Dorothy Jarrow) are wonderfully developed protagonists. Both have emotional baggage from their respective pasts but they are both pretty well adjusted and happy with the direction their lives have taken. D.J. is introverted but she is not shy. While she is a little overwhelmed by the town’s attention when she first arrives, she is enthusiastic about her new job and ready to put down roots in the small town.

Scott is an endearing hero and an all around great guy. He is close to his family and he loves carrying on the tradition of working in the family pharmacy. His marriage to his high school sweetheart ended in divorce and while he has been involved in a casual fling or two, Scott is no hurry to settle down again.

The secondary cast of characters is also superbly developed. One of my favorites is Scott’s mom, Viv. She is still deeply grieving the loss of her husband, and she is is having a difficult time moving on. She has an ulterior motive for hiring D.J. and she is quite determined to play matchmaker for D.J. and Scott.

The romance between D.J. and Scott is slow moving and takes a backseat for most of the novel. D.J. misinterprets some key information about Scott and she definitely has the wrong impression of him for a lot of the story. However D.J. slowly lets down her guard and an easy friendship develops between them. There is plenty of sexual tension as both of them fight their attraction to one another.

Love Overdue is a light, angst free novel. In a refreshing change of pace, there are no big emotional scenes and no big misunderstandings between Scott and D.J. The resolution of one of the storylines feels a little abrupt, but the timing of it makes it a non-issue for Scott and D.J. Pamela Morsi wraps up the story with a lovely epilogue that is quite heartwarming.

5 Comments

Filed under Contemporary, Harlequin, HarlequinMira, Love Overdue, Pamela Morsi, Rated B+, Review, Romance

Review: Tear You Apart by Megan Hart

Title: Tear You Apart by Megan Hart
Publisher: Harlequin
Imprint: Mira
Genre: Contemporary, Erotica
Length: 299 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley

Summary:

Their passion will consume everything—and everyone— in its path….

I’m on a train.

I don’t know which stop I got on at; I only know the train is going fast and the world outside becomes a blur. I should get off, but I don’t. The universe is playing a cosmic joke on me. Here I had my life—a good life with everything a woman could want—and suddenly, there is something more I didn’t know I could have. A chance for me to be satisfied and content and maybe even on occasion deliriously, amazingly, exuberantly fulfilled.

So this is where I am, on a train that’s out of control, and I am not just a passenger. I’m the one shoveling the furnace full of coal to keep it going fast and faster.

If I could make myself believe it all happened by chance and I couldn’t help it, that I’ve been swept away, that it’s not my fault, that it’s fate…would that be easier? The truth is, I didn’t know I was looking for this until I found Will, but I must’ve been, all this time. And now it is not random, it is not fate, it is not being swept away.

This is my choice. And I don’t know how to stop.

Or even if I want to.

The Review:

If you have ever read a novel written by Megan Hart then you know her books are raw, gritty and about as real as life gets. Her latest release, Tear You Apart, is no exception. This unflinchingly honest portrayal of a long term marriage withering under the weight of complacency and neglect is intense, emotional and quite heartbreaking.

Elisabeth Amblin is wife and a mother whose life is about to undergo an unexpected and dramatic change. Her children are grown and about to graduate from college and while her marriage is not perfect, she is content. All of that changes when she meets Will, an artist at the gallery where she works. Minor irritants and her husband’s neglectful treatment become major issues as Elisabeth’s disillusionment and dissatisfaction with her marriage culminate in a fateful decision that will take her to new heights but also plunge her into deep despair.

Tear You Apart takes a hard and sometimes harsh look at long term marriages. Elisabeth’s marriage has been strained for a long time but she has grown so used to her husband’s treatment of her that she continues to drift along. For much of the novel, Elisabeth is ambivalent and indecisive over the future of her marriage. She wants to do what is right for her family, but doing so would be wrong for her. No matter what choice Elisabeth finally makes, someone is going to get hurt.

If you are looking for a romance with a traditional happily ever after, you are probably not going to find it in Tear You Apart. What you will find is a love story with realistic characters that are flawed and sometimes make morally questionable decisions. You will find a passion that burns so hot it is impossible not to give in to it. You will probably not agree with Elisabeth’s choices, but ultimately, she ends up right where she needs to be.

Another gut-wrenching, emotion-filled, thought-provoking and highly erotic novel from Megan Hart that I highly recommend.

1 Comment

Filed under Contemporary, Erotica, Harlequin, HarlequinMira, Megan Hart, Rated B+, Review, Tear You Apart

Friday Feature: Can’t Help Falling in Love by Bella Andre Review & Contest

Title: Can’t Help Falling in Love by Bella Andre
The Sullivans Book Three
Publisher: Harlequin
Imprint: Mira
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 336 pages
Book Rating: B

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publicist

Summary:

How much is worth risking?

Gabe Sullivan risks his life every day as a firefighter in San Francisco, but he knows better than to risk giving his heart again. Especially not to the woman he saved from a deadly apartment fire and can’t stop thinking about.

Megan Harris owes everything to the heroic firefighter who saved her and her daughter. Everything except her heart. Because after losing her pilot husband, she has vowed to never suffer through loving and losing a man with a dangerous job again.

But when Gabe and Megan meet again, how can he possibly ignore her courage, determination and beauty? And how can she deny not only his strong bond with her daughter but also his sweetly sensual kisses, challenging her to risk everything she’s been guarding for so long?

The Review:

Can’t Help Falling in Love is another sweet and very steamy love at first sight romance in Bella Andre’s The Sullivans series. This installment is firefighter Gabe Sullivan’s story and it is sure to delight old and new fans of the series.

There is an instant attraction between Gabe Sullivan and Megan Harris but neither is ready for a relationship. A previous ill-fated romance with a woman he rescued has Gabe steering clear of women he meets on the job. Megan is a widow who only dates men in safe jobs after her adrenaline seeking husband’s death. They agree to keep their distance but an unexpected connection brings them back together and they are then thrown together by Megan’s matching-making daughter, Summer.

Can’t Help Falling in Love is a well-written novel, but it is predictable. As in the previous books in The Sullivans series, there is an “insta-love” quality to Megan and Gabe’s romance. Much of their time is spent in bed, and their love scenes are quite detailed, long and drawn-out. There are few surprises for the reader as the story progresses towards the expected happily ever after.

But there are a few differences that make Can’t Help Falling in Love stand out from the other books in the series. Gabe’s occupation as a fireman is a refreshing change from his über successful and wealthy brothers Marcus and Chase. Gabe is initially hesitant to get involved with Megan because of his past, but he works through his issues fairly early on in the story.

Megan is mature and level-headed but she has a blind spot when it comes to Gabe’s career. While she is perfectly content to have casual relationship with him, she has no intention of getting emotionally involved with Gabe. Megan takes most of the novel to work through her reservations and while I understood where she coming from, it was frustrating that it took her so long to figure things out.

What really makes Can’t Help Falling Love unique is Megan’s daughter, Summer. She is an adorable addition to the cast of characters and I really enjoyed her scenes with Gabe. She is precocious and maybe a bit mature for a seven year old, but I liked the depth she added to the overall plot.

Can’t Help Falling in Love is a light, angst free addition to the The Sullivans series. Bella Andre perfectly sets up the next book in series with an enticing epilogue featuring sister Sophie and her love interest Jake.


Contest

I am giving away one PRINT copy of Can’t Help Falling in Love to one lucky commenter. Contest is open to US addresses ONLY. To enter today’s contest:

You must Do TWO of the Following:

1. Sign up for e-mail updates (upper left corner). One email daily with the day’s posts.

OR:

2. Be or become a fan of Book Reviews & More by Kathy Facebook page

OR:

3. Follow me on Twitter (@BookReviewsMore)

OR:

4. Friend Book Reviews & More by Kathy on Goodreads

Make sure you have filled out the contest entry form:

5. To be eligible to enter contests on Book Reviews and More by Kathy you MUST fill out the contest entry form (found HERE). This form only needs to be filled out ONCE. Your privacy is important to me, and I will not share your information.

And don’t forget to:

6. Leave a comment on this post by 5 PM Mountain Time Monday afternoon. Contest is open to US addresses ONLY.

It’s that easy! The winner will be selected using random.org. I will mail one lucky winner a print copy of Can’t Help Falling in Love. The winner will be posted HERE on Tuesday.

Follow the rest of the tour HERE.

7 Comments

Filed under Bella Andre, Blog Tour, Can't Help Falling in Love, Contemporary, Contest, Harlequin, HarlequinMira, Rated B, Review, Romance, The Sullivans

Review: Somewhere Between Luck and Trust by Emilie Richards

Title: Somewhere Between Luck and Trust by Emilie Richards
Goddesses Anonymous Series Book Two
Publisher: Harlequin
Imprint: Harlequin MIRA
Genre: Contemporary, Fiction, Romance
Length: 496 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley

Summary:

Where Luck Meets Trust, Miracles Can Happen

Christy Haviland served eight months in prison, giving birth behind bars to the child of the man who put her there and might yet destroy her. Now she’s free again, but what does that mean? As smart as she is, a learning disability has kept her from learning to read. And that’s the least of her hurdles.

Georgia Ferguson, talented educator, receives a mysterious charm bracelet that may help her find the mother who abandoned her at birth. Does she want to follow the clues, and if she does, can reticent
Georgia reach out for help along the way?

Both women are standing at a crossroads, a place where unlikely unions can be formed. A place where two very different women might bridge the gap between generations and education, and together make tough choices.

Somewhere between the townships called Luck and Trust, at a mountain cabin known as the Goddess House, two very different women may even, if they dare, find common ground and friendship.

The Review:

Somewhere Between Luck and Trust is a beautifully written novel about new beginnings, family, and love. This second installment in Emilie Richards’ Goddesses Anonymous series is an endearing story about a group of friends who provide Christy Haviland a safe haven while she makes momentous decisions about her future following her release from jail.

None of the women in Somewhere Between Luck and Trust have had an easy life. Many of them have faced and overcome tremendous obstacles but they do not let their experiences define who they are. Their empathy for others along with the realization their lives could have taken a far worse turn makes it easy for them to lend a helping hand to those in need.

The first recipient of their aid is Christy Haviland. Abandoned by her family, Christy fell in love with the wrong man and when she became a liability, he framed her for a crime she did not commit. Having served her sentence, Christy is at a crossroads as she grapples with some serious decisions about her future. Her feelings about her son are complicated by her past with his father and the realization that between her prison record and her learning disability, her job opportunities are limited. With the help of Georgia Ferguson, her daughter Sam and the other women of Goddesses Anonymous, Christy soon believes a second chance at a new life is possible, but before she can embrace the future, she will have to find a way to resolve the events of her past.

There is also a romantic component to the storyline as well. The romances are understated but perfectly compliment the overall plot. Underlying Georgia’s easy friendship with Lucas Ramsey is a strong attraction and they easily transition from friends to lovers. Christy’s relationship is barely beginning as the novel ends but the slow moving romance is appropriate considering everything Christy is dealing with.

In addition to the various storylines with Christy and Georgia, there are also a couple of intriguing mysteries. The discovery of a charm bracelet provides Georgia the opportunity to find the woman who abandoned her at birth, and Lucas, Christy and Georgia use the charms to uncover valuable clues to find Georgia’s birth mother. The other mystery surrounds the terrifying reason Christy’s ex-boyfriend framed her and how far he is willing to go to keep his secrets from being revealed.

Somewhere Between Luck and Trust is an engaging and captivating novel that brings attention to relevant social and educational issues in a way that readers can relate to. The characters are kind-hearted and compassionate with a genuine desire to help those in need. Emilie Richards gives this multi-layered novel a realistic ending that is unexpected but satisfying.

Read my review of One Mountain Away, the first installment of the Goddesses Anonymous series HERE.

1 Comment

Filed under Contemporary, Emilie Richards, Fiction, Goddesses Anonymous Series, Harlequin, HarlequinMira, Rated B+, Review, Romance, Somewhere Between Luck and Trust

Review: Into the Dark by Rick Mofina

Title: Into the Dark by Rick Mofina
Publisher: Harlequin
Imprint: Harlequin MIRA
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery
Length: 384 pages
Book Rating: B

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley

Summary:

THE SOLE SURVIVOR OF A HEARTBREAKING FAMILY TRAGEDY…

Claire Bowen, a haunted psychologist, devotes her life to helping troubled women rebuild theirs. But her dream of a family with her new husband, Robert, a pilot and local hero, begins to crumble as disturbing revelations from his past emerge.

AND A GRIEVING COP WHO LURES A KILLER FROM THE SHADOWS…

Detective Joe Tanner, struggling to overcome his wife’s death while raising their little girl alone, heads the task force formed to stop the monster who has resurfaced with a chilling message.

RACE THE CLOCK IN A LIFE-AND-DEATH STRUGGLE TO SAVE THE NEXT VICTIM…

In the wake of five cold-case murders across Los Angeles, one of Claire’s most promising patients vanishes. Gut instinct tells Tanner the truth is within his grasp, while Claire is torn between guilt and terror over what’s to come. As time runs out, both are pulled deeper and deeper into an unspeakable darkness.

The Review:

Rick Mofina’s Into the Dark is a fast-paced mystery that provides a fascinating and chilling look into the life and mind of a serial killer.

On the ten year anniversary of the first of five unsolved murders, Detective Joe Tanner uncovers a new clue that irrefutably links the five deaths to the same perpetrator. In an effort to flush out the killer, Tanner contacts reporter Mark Harding to write a story about the unsolved murders. The media attention coincides with the murderer’s growing urge to kill again and Tanner is soon in a race against time to unmask a killer before he strikes again.

At the same time Tanner discovers the deaths are the work of a serial killer, psychologist Claire Bowen is growing uneasy about her husband Robert. Robert has been pulling away from her recently and she has the uncomfortable feeling he is keeping secrets from her. Claire’s suspicions lead her to accept a close friend’s offer to look into Robert’s past and neither woman is prepared for the shocking and disturbing information that is uncovered.

Into the Dark is written in third person from several characters’ points of view. From Joe, readers are privy to the investigation as he uncovers clues and follows leads. A large part of the story unfolds from Claire’s point of view as she wrestles with her suspicions about Robert. However the most interesting perspective is from the killer. It is an insightful look into what ultimately turned this person into a killer and how surprisingly easy it is for the murderer to maintain a normal life until the urge to kill again becomes overwhelming.

With Into the Dark, Rick Mofina brings readers yet another intricately plotted and suspense laden mystery. Although there is no mystery about the killer’s identity, this compelling psychological thriller will keep you on the edge of your seat as missed clues and false leads take the investigation in the wrong direction as the killer gives in to his murderous impulses.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Comments Off on Review: Into the Dark by Rick Mofina

Filed under Contemporary, Harlequin, HarlequinMira, Into the Dark, Mystery, Rated B, Review, Rick Mofina