I received this book for free from ALAAC17 in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Duchess Deal (Girl Meets Duke, #1) by Tessa Dare
Series: Girl Meets Duke #1
Published by Avon on August 22nd 2017
Genres: Adult, Historical, Romance
When girl meets Duke, their marriage breaks all the rules…
Since his return from war, the Duke of Ashbury’s to-do list has been short and anything but sweet: brooding, glowering, menacing London ne’er-do-wells by night. Now there’s a new item on the list. He needs an heir—which means he needs a wife. When Emma Gladstone, a vicar’s daughter turned seamstress, appears in his library wearing a wedding gown, he decides on the spot that she’ll do.
His terms are simple:- They will be husband and wife by night only.- No lights, no kissing. - No questions about his battle scars.- Last, and most importantly… Once she’s pregnant with his heir, they need never share a bed again.
But Emma is no pushover. She has a few rules of her own:- They will have dinner together every evening.- With conversation.- And unlimited teasing.- Last, and most importantly… Once she’s seen the man beneath the scars, he can’t stop her from falling in love…
I don’t read much adult historical fiction but I have read Dare’s When a Scot Ties the Know because everyone was loving it and how can you not read a book with a title like that?! I was slightly skeptical but I thoroughly enjoyed it. So when I saw this one at ALA, I had to grab it. And I’m glad I did. I very much enjoyed this one as well. This one wasn’t quite as witty as I was hoping for but I absolutely loved the main character and her heart and her new friends and her loyalty and stubbornness. And I definitely grew to like the Duke as well. They made quite a pair! I loved watching them learn to trust each other and fall in love. Plus, the supporting characters were extremely endearing. Especially Khan and Breeches and her little group of misfit friends. (I truly hope they’ll be the MCs in the later books in this series.) This is a great book to pick up when you want something enjoyable and quick and with a strong female lead and a tiny bit of a Beauty and the Beast feeling. I really enjoyed it and should probably start picking up books like this more often!
Kindling the Moon by Jenn Bennett
Series: Arcadia Bell #1
Published by Pocket Books on June 28th 2011
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy, Romance
Meet Arcadia Bell: bartender, renegade magician, fugitive from the law. . . .
Being the spawn of two infamous occultists (and alleged murderers) isn’t easy, but freewheeling magician Arcadia “Cady” Bell knows how to make the best of a crummy situation. After hiding out for seven years, she’s carved an incognito niche for herself slinging drinks at the demon-friendly Tambuku Tiki Lounge.
But she receives an ultimatum when unexpected surveillance footage of her notorious parents surfaces: either prove their innocence or surrender herself. Unfortunately, the only witness to the crimes was an elusive Æthyric demon, and Cady has no idea how to find it. She teams up with Lon Butler, an enigmatic demonologist with a special talent for sexual spells and an arcane library of priceless stolen grimoires. Their research soon escalates into a storm of conflict involving missing police evidence, the decadent Hellfire Club, a ruthless bounty hunter, and a powerful occult society that operates way outside the law. If Cady can’t clear her family name soon, she’ll be forced to sacrifice her own life . . . and no amount of running will save her this time.
The only reason I ended up finding this book was because I just read Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett and was in desperate need of something else by her immediately and this one appealed more to me than her 20’s series did. Plus, it was available at my library. But I really had no idea what to expect except something completely different but hopefully just as engaging as the YA romance I’d just read from her. Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite up to those standards for me but it was still a fun read. One problem for me was just how complex the world was. Coming right off a run of YA romances, this was much more involved than I expected. But that’s not a bad thing, it just slowed me down a bit and was confusing at times. The second problem, and a much bigger one for me, was the romance. I did not ship it. I knew they were going to get together because that’s just how books like this work but I just kept wondering why and how?! Aside from the fact that he was 42 and she was 24, he had a 13 year old kid (who I actually liked a lot) and a MUSTACHE. I really hate mustaches. But also, I didn’t feel any chemistry between them until the very end and the first time they had any sort of physical contact was very weird. I don’t know how to describe it and I don’t want to give anything away but it was just weird and I had a difficult time getting past that. But mostly, I just wanted more chemistry and intensity between the two of them and it just wasn’t there. Still, I enjoyed the book and went on to read and enjoy the rest of the series and I’d recommend it. Especially for someone looking for a lighter Urban Fantasy or maybe an easy intro into Urban Fantasy. This just had a slight feel of that, not too intense. And also someone who wants fantasy and demons and battles but not a lot of romance. It was a little different than I expected but I still couldn’t help becoming completely addicted.
Reckless Hearts (Reckless Hearts, #1) by Heather Van Fleet
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca on February 7th 2017
Between boot camp and two TOD’s in Iraq, my buddies Max, Gavin and me have been through some serious hell. So the last thing I ever expected was to find the biggest challenge of my life back home.
My girlfriend died. I couldn’t even attend her funeral, let alone tell her goodbye or that I’m sorry I wasn’t there like I should’ve been.
But she left me a gift. The best and scariest one I could’ve ever asked for. One I didn’t think I could handle…until the day I saw her tiny blues looking up at me in that airport. Chloe.
Now here I am, raising my baby girl—with the help of my two best friends. Things couldn’t be better. Until she walked into my life.
All I wanted was a nanny. Someone to take care of my girl when I couldn’t. What I didn’t count on was Addison, the brown-eyed temptress with a body of sin, and everything I didn’t need, but suddenly wanted.
This was okay but not great. I really enjoyed the friendships in this book. Both between the three guys who are living together and helping to raise Collin’s baby and also between Addison and Lia and Kenna. I think some of the best moments in the books were happening during the encounters between the friends. And in a romance, those moments really should belong to the main couple. But that’s not even my biggest problem. What I had the most trouble with for this one was that I never really felt like I actually knew and understood the characters. I felt like the author just never quite decided on if Collin was going to be all alpha male in the relationship or not and he’d sometimes slip into this weird sort-of alpha male demanding type that I just did not like at all. Then he’d get cold and distant and then sweet. It felt a little all over the place. And I felt like Addison was suppose to be this completely independent, take no shit from anyone woman but instead came off as kind of whiny and indecisive. And when I don’t feel like I actually know the characters, I have a hard time connecting with them. But even so, I did find this one enjoyable enough and I really liked the Three Men and a Baby vibe it had. I haven’t yet decided if I’ll continue the series, though, because I really didn’t like either Max or Gavin. I do feel like there is the possibility for some really great stories from both of them, especially since I still don’t know them that well. So I’ll keep an eye out for them but as of right now, I don’t evidence of them happening yet.