Sunday, August 24, 2014

Be My Hero by Linda Kage @lindakage

Arc received from author in exchange for an honest review 
4 Stars

“Be My Hero” is the third installment in the Forbidden Men Series and Linda Kage has done it again… creating yet another loveable, sweet and sexy book boyfriend ~ Patrick “Pick” Ryan ~ He is a hero in every way, a true knight in shinning armor. I easily fell for his charms, his tender heart and all his gallant ways. Pick and Eva’s story is one filled with several bold characters that rise up to brave great challenges. It is a wonderful tale of destined love, insurmountable courage, overcoming emotional pain, and the undying pursuit to find happiness.

The Prologue ~

This was one of the best prologues I’ve come across in a long while. To enjoy it’s beauty, you really need to suspend all logic and believe in the magic of fortunetellers.  We are first introduced to Pick and witness his dismal childhood. Being raised in the foster care system, life holds little hope for him and his friends. Until one evening he encounters Madam LeFrey, a soothsayer, who feeds him HOPE. Visions flash before him of a life filled with purpose and promise; the promise of happiness and joy; of love and family; and most importantly, the promise of finding his true soul mate…. Tinker bell.  But these visions, I feel, were a blessing and a curse for Pick. They showed him a beautiful life… but when will it be his to enjoy?

Pick and Eve ~ 
I first met Eve in “Price of a Kiss’ and honestly, I REALLY DISLIKED her character. She was a bitchy, slutty, mean-spirited girl whose careless lifestyle led her to be left stranded and pregnant. With nowhere to turn, she mooches off of her cousin Reese and boyfriend Mason.  But as they say, you never should judge a book by its cover. I did, and I was happily proven wrong. 

As I got to know Eva and discovered her closely guarded secrets, my heart ached for her pain. Eva lived a nightmare, and the hard lessons she learned caused her to distrust the people (especially the men) in her life. Her character transformation shocked me as I found I adored and admired her bravery and strength.  A misunderstood sassy girl who has suffered both physical and emotional horrors, Eva is a hero in her own right.  She is affectionate, caring and displays overwhelming courage in the way she loves her children, her friends and Pick.

Sweet Pick… it was easy to fall for him. He’s a tattooed and pierced mechanic/bartender that wormed his way into Eva’s life and my heart.  He has all the bad boy “playa” qualities, but nothing could be further from the truth. Pick is uniquely different and the noblest of men. An honorable guy with a heart of gold, Pick protects all in need without expecting anything in return. He loves unconditionally. What I relished the most was his determination to fight for a better life. Loved the way he cared for his children, for Eva and friends. Pick easily became one of my favorite Forbidden Men.

I really enjoyed reading “Be My Hero”. It goes without saying I enjoyed the chemistry and passion between Eva and Pick. I liked seeing the story from dual points of view. Although this is a sweet love story of courage and friends falling in love, Kage weaves some very serious taboo issues into her tales. Terrible things befall these young adults  at the hands of some of the most nefarious characters. There was a great deal of angst and nail biting tension embedded in the plot, creating twists and turns that kept the story line interesting. All in all, it was a passionate, swoon worthy read. Added bonus, Kage treated us to an insight to some old friends from “Price of a Kiss” and “To Professor, With Love”. It was a perfect mix of love, romance, heartache and DRAMA. Looking forward to the next installment and more from the Forbidden gang. Thank you, Linda Kage, for yet another captivating love story.   

“My Tinker Bell. My soul mate.”

Monday, August 4, 2014

One Night Promised by Jodi Ellen Malpas @JodiEllenMalpas

4.5 Stars
Arc received in exchange for an honest review


He is Mysterious…riddled with secrets yet to be disclosed.

He is Mercurial…prone to mood swings and extraordinarily broody, in a sexy way.

He is Mesmerizing…a fascinating man who is passionate, charming and above all, a proper gentleman.


M is an enigma. “One Night Promised” treated me to a mere glimpse of his multifaceted personality. Jodi Ellen Malpas is a masterful writer. A temptress who presented a tale that gently and beautifully lured me into the minds and lives of her characters. Like a slow seductive dance, Malpas held my hand and gradually led me into a world where my emotions were twirled and my mind was twisted from a plot filled with questions, intrigue and angst. This installment laid the foundation for what I believe will be an epic romance..

M is a character in his own right and should not be judged, paralleled or compared to any other. Also, be patient. M and Livy’s story is not fast paced.  Written from Livy’s point of view, it is extremely detailed. I entered this series with an open mind and embraced this new cast of characters. If you are a fan of JEM, or new to her work, trust this author to lead you on a compelling journey.

Livy is a sassy and stubborn barista/waitress with a painful past. M is a sexy, insanely wealthy “gentleman”. On a chance encounter they meet as Livy serves M a terrible cup of coffee. (His reaction was hysterical). There’s an immediate attraction between the two that is undeniable. Both fight against the allure…but eventually, they succumb to their desire. Oh, how I savored the build up and the chase. M was delicious as he fought his attraction... 

“I need to force myself to stay away from you”... “Because you seem like a sweet girl who should get more from a man than the best fuck of you life."        M.
And so it begins. The unassuming girl falls for the enigmatic man. Both consumed by lust, a proposition is made and accepted. One night together – 24 (non consecutive) hours of passion, tenderness and off the charts sizzling sex. 

A promise to worship Livy in every way. M’s incredible as he sensually feeds Livy’s body with insurmountable pleasures. 

Livy is a likeable female lead. There were times she grated on my nerves as she fought M’s temptations and towards the very end she managed to MAJORLY piss me off. But overall, she was endearing. I fell in love with her family. Livy’s grandmother, Nan and George, a delightfully comical pair, had me in stiches with all their crazy antics. Sidekicks Gregory and Sylvie were funny, lovable characters as well.

I have to admit, it took me some time to warm up to M. As the story developed, I began to somewhat understand him. Not really pleased with some of his actions, but I got him. What I most enjoyed were his sexy, charismatic and quirky ways. He’s a true romantic and smoking hot in the bedroom. But mostly, M was a total head-trip. There must be justifiable reasons for all his quirks, fears, secrets and obsessive compulsions - and have a gut feeling the revelations will overwhelm me. I am looking forward to digging deeper into his persona. 

As always, JEM's readers need to pay close attention to the story’s details. As a writer, she is incredibly clever and extremely sneaky in dropping unsuspecting hints within the storyline.  Certainly was a crafty way of keeping my attention and drawing me further into the world she created. Expect the unexpected in “One Night Promised”, for perception is not necessarily reality.   A good start to what promises to be a great series.  Be warned - as I suspected, the ending is one hell of a cliffhanger. Nail-bitting AGNST. And thus begins my excruciatingly painful wait for “One Night Denied”.