Saturday, 28 February 2015

Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

Attachments (2011) (Orion Books)
Rainbow Rowell
Grade: B+
Genre: fiction
Source: own
General RBC 2015: The first book by a favourite author 

The year is 1999 and the Internet is still in its earliest stages. Lincoln has just started a new job at the offices of a local newspaper, enforcing the office’s new IT policy which entails reading emails flagged by the system. He’s quickly drawn into the lives of repeat offenders, Beth and Jennifer who email back and forth about their love lives and family troubles. At first, their emails offer a welcome distraction from the monotony of the night shift but before he knows it, he finds himself falling for one of them and it’s too late to issue a warning without revealing that he’s been reading their emails all along. Does love before first sight exist?

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Heartbreaker by Julie Garwood

Heartbreaker (2000) (Pocket Star Books)
Julie Garwood
Grade: B
Genre: romantic suspense
Sex scenes: mild
Source: own 
Buchanan/FBI: (1) Heartbreaker 
Romance RBC 2015: A romantic suspense

The last thing that Father Tommy Madden expects to hear from the other side of the confessional box is a twisted maniac bragging about the women he’s killed and the lucky woman who’s next on his list – Laurant, Tommy’s younger sister. When the self-named ‘Heartbreaker’ drops off clues with the police, Tommy is no longer morally torn at the prospect of divulging confidential information and calls his childhood best friend, Nick Buchanan, for help. Nick is only too happy to use his forced holiday to be productive and shadow Laurant. Miraculously, they’ve never met despite Nick’s lifelong friendship with Tommy and Nick is astounded that the skinny girl he remembers from photographs has blossomed into the woman standing before him. What Nick really doesn’t expect is for Laurant to be so stubborn about carrying on her life as normal in an effort to trap Heartbreaker. When the pair return to Laurant’s house in the tiny town of Holy Oaks, their close quarters reveal a fiery attraction that shows no signs of extinguishing …

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Prom Nights from Hell by various (anthology)

Prom Nights from Hell (2007) (HC Children's Books) (anthology)
Meg Cabot / Lauren Myracle / Kim Harrison / Michele Jaffe / Stephenie Meyer
Grade: C
Genre: anthology / young adult / paranormal
Source: own
TBR RBC 2015: A book on HarperCollins' backlist 

In this collection by five best-selling young adult authors, prom nights take on a whole different meaning … in Meg Cabot’s The Executioner’s Daughter, Mary is on a mission to take out a vampire who has bewitched her best friend and destroyed her family … in Lauren Myracle’s The Corsage, Frankie takes desperate measures to bring back the one she loves … in Kim Harrison’s Madison Avery and the Grim Reaper, Madison’s prom night takes a turn for the worse when she accepts a ride home from a beautiful stranger … in Michele Jaffe’s Kiss and Tell, one of Miranda’s clients turns out to be a Very Wanted Person … and lastly in Stephenie Meyer’s Hell on Earth, one minor demon is intent on ruining prom night for everyone … these short stories take prom nights to a different paranormal level …

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Immersed in Pleasure by Tiffany Reisz

Immersed in Pleasure (2012) (Harlequin) (novella)
Tiffany Reisz
Grade: A-
Genre: erotica
Sex scenes: hot
Source: own

The Manhattan Mermaids are said to be the most exclusive, beautiful women in New York, entertaining wealthy and powerful men in an elite club called The Fathoms. As if that wasn’t enough, they’re all virgins. Like many others, Derek Prince doesn’t believe they exist until he meets the tempting and mysterious Xenia. She drives him crazy with desire, but a relationship would mean losing her position at Fathoms. Will Derek wait? But more importantly, will Xenia leave her life and the security of The Fathoms?

Friday, 20 February 2015

Twelve Days of Christmas by Trisha Ashley

Twelve Days of Christmas (2010) (Avon)
Trisha Ashley
Grade: C
Genre: chick lit
Sex scenes: super mild
Source: own
Lancashire: (1) Sweet Nothings, (2) A Winter's Tale, (3) Wedding Tiers, (4) Chocolate Wishes, (5) Twelve Days of Christmas
TBR RBC 2015: Free Square 

Brought up by her Strange Baptist grandmother, Holly didn’t celebrate Christmas in its modern, commercial sense until she married her husband, Alan. When he died in a tragic accident not long before the festive holidays, Holly reverted to her old ways. Now, she’s a chef in the summer months, catering for week-long house parties, and a house sitter in the winter, choosing to spend her holidays in solitude caring for other peoples’ houses instead of forcing a smile with her family-in-law. This Christmas, Holly is faced with just that depressing prospect until a last-minute house-sitting job falls in her lap. But what starts as a straightforward task in looking after a house and its resident dog, horse and goat, turns into a fully-fledged family-orientated house party with its requisite unwanted guests alongside the bosom of the family as Holly takes on the responsibility for catering to a family she barely knows, but quickly comes to love as her own …

Monday, 16 February 2015

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

300th post!!! What a milestone - it feels like only yesterday that I started this blog, but it was in fact just over 3 years ago. Boy has it flown by. Here's to the next 300 posts and 3 years ...

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares (2011) (MIRA Ink)
Rachel Cohn & David Levithan
Grade: C+
Genre: young adult
Source: own / NetGalley
TBR RBC 2015: A NetGalley title 

When Dash leads his separated parents to believe that he’ll be spending Christmas with the other, they each plan holidays with their new partners and leave Dash to his own devices in New York City. He despises Christmas, but when he finds a notebook in his favourite bookshop filled with clues and dares left by a stranger, this is the perfect thing to keep him occupied. The notebook is Lily’s project, as directed by her brother, in a bid to keep her busy while their parents take a second honeymoon in Fiji over Christmas. As the pair lead each other in a scavenger’s hunt over New York, recruiting friends and relatives to help keep their identities secret in the process, they begin falling for each other on paper. Meeting in person will be their biggest dare yet …

Thursday, 12 February 2015

The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

The Forest of Hands and Teeth (2009) (Gollancz)
Carrie Ryan
Grade: C
Genre: young adult / dystopian
Source: own
Forest of Hands and Teeth: (1) The Forest of Hands and Teeth
General RBC 2015: A book on your TBR list 

When Mary’s mother becomes infected and chooses a life with the Unconsecrated, Mary has lost everything. Her father is also one of the Unconsecrated in the Forest of Hands and Teeth, her brother Jed is married and has his own family to look after, besides not being able to forgive Mary for letting their mother become infected, and no one has spoken for Mary in the village’s yearly cycle of marriage ceremonies. Mary is taken in by the Sisterhood, whose direction and guidance is unparalleled in their village. But when Mary sees and hears things she shouldn’t she begins to question the hold that he Sisterhood have on the village and the strength of the beliefs she’s followed all her life. When their fences are breached and the Unconsecrated flood their safe haven, Mary takes a leap of faith in entering the forbidden Forest of Hands and Teeth, in search of a better, safer world away from the only lifestyle she has ever known.

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Duchess in Love by Eloisa James

Duchess in Love (2002) (Piatkus)
Eloisa James
Grade: B-
Genre: historical romance
Sex scenes: mild
Source: own
Duchess Quartet: (1) Duchess in Love
Romance RBC 2015: A book with an arranged marriage 

Forced into marriage aged twelve to eighteen-year-old Camden, future Duke of Girton, Gina has only ever known married life. However, she’s never known married life with her husband. Camden escaped out a window as soon as the ceremony was over and has been sculpting nude women in Greece for extortionate amounts of money and shocking the Ton ever since. When Gina requests an annulment so she can marry the love of her life, Sebastian, Marquess of Bonnington, Cam is only all too happy to oblige and returns to England for the first time in over a decade to get the ball rolling. What Cam doesn’t expect is to find that the slip of a girl he married has blossomed into a great beauty. Living and socialising in close quarters at a house party, they’re both forced to re-evaluate their decision to separate and find themselves distastefully falling in love with each other!

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Breaking Point by Suzanne Brockmann

Breaking Point (2005) (Ballantine)
Suzanne Brockmann
Grade: B
Genre: adventure / romantic suspense
Sex scenes: mild
Source: own
Troubleshooters: (1) The Unsung Hero, (2) The Defiant Hero, (3) Over the Edge, (4) Out of Control, (5) Into the Night, (6) Gone Too Far, (7) Flashpoint, (8) Hot Target, (9) Breaking Point, (15) Hot Pursuit
Romance RBC 2015: A book with a May-December romance 

When the FBI’s top negotiator receives the news that Gina Vitagliano is among the list of casualties after a terrorist bombing in Hamburg, Max Bhagat is on the first plane with blood in his eyes. They might not have spoken or seen each other in 18 months, but theirs is a unique relationship that until now, Max has fervently denied and suppressed. Max was the chief hostage negotiator sent to talk down a group of terrorists who had hijacked a plane in Kazbekistan; Gina was the unlucky passenger on that flight chosen to act as messenger between the terrorists and Max. The experience left Gina scarred and traumatised and more than the doctors and therapists, Max was the one who helped Gina on her path to recovery. After deliberately pushing her away 18 months earlier, Max cannot imagine a life without Gina. But it quickly becomes clear that it’s not Gina’s body in the morgue and that she’s been kidnapped alongside fellow aid worker Molly Anderson and held hostage until the US government hand over one of their most wanted men: Grady Morant, ex-SEAL turned smuggler who is willing to trade his life for Gina and Molly’s. Taken out of his comfort zone, Max is up against the clock as he sets out not only to save Gina, but also a part of himself …

Friday, 6 February 2015

Ransom My Heart by Meg Cabot

Ransom My Heart (2008) (Macmillan)
Meg Cabot
Grade: B--
Genre: medieval romance
Sex scenes: mild
Source: own
TBR RBC 2015: A book by Meg Cabot 

Finnula Craig is the youngest of five sisters and their long-suffering brother, and quite the handful. After their parents died several years ago, Robert has been the head of this family of millers and Finn has only grown more difficult to deal with. A talented archer and hunter, she is a thorn in the local sheriff’s side as she continues to flaunt the law and poach upon the local Earl’s game.

When Finn’s only other unmarried sister lands in trouble, Finn reluctantly agrees to help her out. The local women have taken to ambushing young men and demanding ransom from their families in order to fund local beer-making activities. Finn has no other choice but to take a hostage and hope he’s from a rich family. What Finn doesn’t expect is for her captive to be none other than Hugo Fitzwilliam, the new Earl of Stephensgate. Having just returned from the Holy Land, fighting for King and country, Hugo is sorely tempted by this feisty and audacious slip of a girl who isn’t afraid to sass him. For her part, Finn is just as afraid of losing her freedom as losing her heart …

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen by Paul Torday

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen (2007) (Phoenix)
Paul Torday
Grade: A-
Genre: fiction
Source: own
General RBC 2015: A book that became a film 

Dr Alfred Jones, a respected fisheries scientist with the National Centre for Fisheries Excellence and an avid fisherman, has been tasked with the impossible: to introduce salmon to the Yemen. Coerced by his boss and political manoeuvring higher-up, Fred takes on the project against his better judgement. But as time passes, he can’t help but be enticed by the conviction of Sheikh Muhammad ibn Zaidi bani Tihama, Yemeni national who is funding the project and who is deeply passionate about bringing fly-fishing to the desert. Working closely with the Sheikh’s agent, Harriet Chetwode-Talbot of Fitzharris & Price, this outlandish task sees Fred out of the comforts of his office and jetting between Scotland and the Yemen, forced to deal with meddling politicians and administrators while working through a particularly rocky time in his 20-year marriage. This project is an upstream battle, defying even common sense, until he can hardly recognise the man he has become …

Monday, 2 February 2015

Song of the West by Nora Roberts

(omnibus cover)
Song of the West (1982) (Silhouette)
Nora Roberts
Grade: C+
Genre: contemporary romance
Sex scenes: mild
Source: own
Romance RBC 2015: A book published in the 1980s 

When her pregnant twin sister Sabrina asks Samantha to move to Wyoming to help out for the duration of her risky pregnancy, Sam doesn’t hesitate to leave Philadelphia in the dust. A former Olympic gymnastics champion, Sam feels no strong ties to her job as a gymnastics teacher. Instead, she falls head-over-heels for Wyoming’s beautiful yet contrasting landscape, with its rolling hills and rugged mountains. She feels a similar magnetic pull to Jake Tanner, local rancher and major landowner, despite his overbearing and alpha-male possessive attitude. As Sabrina’s due date looms ever-nearer, so does the time Sam has to make the biggest decision of her life …