Stevie Carroll (stevie_carroll) wrote,
Stevie Carroll

Books Read Part VI

Last post of the evening. It wasn't deliberate, but these are all m/f romances from Samhain.

Savage Transformation
by Lexxie Couper
Published by Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
ISBN 978-1-60928-198-4

Savage Australia Series Book 2

Jacqueline Huddart has spent her entire adult life on the run. Not from the law, or even a jealous lover. From herself—and what she is. That strategy works for her until a funeral demands she return to home ground, and her best friend disappears. Finding Delainie means Jackie must confront the truth…and accept the help of a mysterious, sexy-as-sin Texan.

Marshall Rourke isn’t the only one flying under the radar. He’s on an off-the-grid quest to track down a rogue ex-partner who hunts paranormal beings for the joy of the kill. Convincing the unexpectedly feisty Jackie to trust him isn’t easy, but there’s no better way to lure the hunter into the open than to dangle as unique a target as Jackie — the last Tasmanian Tiger shifter in existence.

Trouble is, Marshall hadn’t counted on Jackie’s brutal right cross. Or the fact that her simmering sexuality calls to his inner wolf on every imaginable level. And that the killer is about to use their desire to add them both to his trophy case...

I won this one, and it appealed to me a lot more than the first in the series, although I still had problems suspending disbelief when pseudo-biology got mentioned. The plot ran along nicely, although I was thrown owards the end by the sudden addition of a different branch of mythology. I don't think I'll read the rest of the series, but I might be tempted by other stories from the same author.

Carolina Pearl
by Sela Carsen
Published by Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
ISBN 978-1-60928-251-6

Between babysitting her very pregnant sister-in-law and fending off her mother’s nagging about her marital status, Blair Moreau is going insane. Her only hold on sanity is her daily walk for a guilty peek at her crush, the sexy neighbor who’s fixing up the old Cotesworth place.

Conn Lucas, the bastard son of Culford’s leading family, got way out of town a long time ago. When the only relative who didn’t despise him leaves him her 250-year-old house, Conn plans to refurbish it, flip it, and get back to Connecticut as soon as possible. Until a local beauty with a rare talent for DIY gives him a hand with some stubborn siding.

When he makes her mad enough to swing a two-by-four at his head, he realizes Blair is better than perfect. Especially when his efforts to keep her from killing him explode into an erotic rush of adrenaline that unleashes desires they’ve both kept hidden.

Breaking through Conn’s tough shell isn’t as difficult Blair’s next hurdle—telling him she’s a werewolf. First, though, they’ve got to deal with meddling ghosts and a bad ol’ boy cousin who isn’t above taking what he wants at nail-gun point...

And then I found a werewolf story that I think will stand up to repeated rereads. I bought this one because I liked the excerpt a lot and wanted to know more about the ghosts. I can accept werewolves much more easily in a world that also has ghosts and makes little attempt to explain either by pseudo-science (see also such TV series as Being Human where the scientists really have no idea what they're doing or why it works/doesn't work).

And who could resist a heroine that's good at DIY?

See Me
by Natasha Moore
Published by Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
ISBN 978-1-60928-234-9

These days, Lydia is feeling increasingly restless, and tired of being invisible. No one at work notices the nose-to-the-grindstone colleague dressed in business drab. Her neighbors don’t even know her name.

No one knows she burns off her frustration by dancing to her favorite music, alone in her apartment. No one knows her closet is a wardrobe divided: monochrome and flats by day, silk and stilettos by night. No one knows her secret ritual has slowly evolved into private stripping... then dancing naked on her tiny balcony, daring someone — anyone — to notice.

Then, at the apartment across the way, the curtains move.

Wes can’t believe what he’s been missing by working the night shift. He is drawn to the amazing woman whose every sensual move makes his body ache. And when she catches him watching, the evening explodes into an erotic fantasy. Afterward, though, she confesses she’s not all she seems. No way is this fiery siren as boring and unlovable as she claims.

And no way is he going to let her go without convincing her she is brave, beautiful... and the face he wants to see every morning.

For a piece of erotica about an exhibitionist, this was remarkably sweet. I do like the shy and retiring good girl type with hidden depths. Another that I can see me rereading a lot.

Hands On
by Christina Crooks
Published by Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
ISBN 978-1-60928-246-2

Talented, down-on-her-luck puppeteer Ginnie Anderson’s life seems destined to fall down around her ears. Much like the rented bungalow that’s just collapsed in a heavy rainstorm, endangering her precious collection of marionettes.

Her livelihood in need of protection and repair, she can’t refuse her landlord’s offer of temporary shelter in his magnificent home. Under his roof, though, she finds her hard-won grasp on her independence slipping—and herself falling into his arms.

The hallmark of Harry Barrett’s business success: he never makes the same mistake twice, particularly when it comes to manipulative women. So why is Ginnie, who pulls strings for a living, like a siren’s song in his blood? It’s best to put temptation as far out of reach as possible.

Yet when Ginnie’s past threatens to destroy the life she’s built for herself, Harry must decide which is more important. Holding tight to his sense of self preservation, or letting go to capture Ginnie’s fragile heart—before it breaks into a thousand pieces.

I've always liked marionettes, so this story was pretty much a must-have. Ginnie actually comes across as rather sweet, in spite of being told she's too pushy by just about everyone. I've had friends like that, so I can believe it.

Harry is great, because he finds numbers soothing and can go straight from making major business decisions to working on the buildomg site (like some real people I could mention).

As they both have evil exes, and Ginnie's mother is hardly a paragon of healthy parenting, nothing runs smoothly. The lack of communication that causes most of the problems for the characters is believable for who they are. Yet another that I want to read again at some point.

And that's me caught up at last. Apologies once again for so many posts on a Sunday night.
Tags: ebooks, reviews
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