Monthly Archives: September 2012

Goddess of the Hunt (Tessa Dare, Wanton Dairymaids #1)

3.5 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
This felt like exactly what it is: a beginning work from a very promising author.  There are interesting characters and passionate sex scenes, but all of the writing and characterization ultimately feels like it could, and should, be more fleshed out.  You’ve got a strong-willed, independent tomboy of a heroine – a woman who rides and fishes with the best of them (and has a hearty appetite to boot).  She’s fun and easy to relate to; the fact that she’s out to seduce her brother’s friend is a nice opening premise.  BUT… this is one of those novels where they fall in love/consummate their relationship almost too quickly, and the second half of the novel is dense with misrepresentations and misunderstandings, where everyone means well, but keeps saying and doing the worst possible thing and hurting each other’s feelings.  Though it’s well written and worth the read, there are many times when it’s just as frustrating as it is good…
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Midnight Angel (Lisa Kleypas, Stokehurst #1)

0 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
Halfway through this book, all I could think was: how much more is there? I finished reading it not because I derived any enjoyment from the story, but because I’m the type of person who has to finish a book.  The plot twists vacillated from fantastically unbelievable to just plain wearisome and the love story of the main characters was forced, underdeveloped, and completely unsatisfying.  The most interesting parts of the novel were small side plots about an impregnated maid, a Maypole party, and descriptions of the Russian landscape.  Think of it this way: I suffered through this book so you don’t have to!

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Secrets of a Summer Night (Lisa Kleypas, Wallflowers #1)

4 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
A very solid start to my favorite Kleypas series, Secrets of a Summer Night is strong enough to be enjoyed as a standalone novel as well.  It has a multi-faceted heroine who is relatable despite being a gold-digger in desperate need of a wealthy husband, and a genuinely interesting hero who struggles valiantly, trying to convince himself he’s merely in lust, before finally succumbing to love. Kleypas’s settings and side characters are artfully developed and believable, and it’s a wonderful historical romance. That said, I will admit it’s probably my least favorite in the series: the prologue was unnecessary and a poor start for an otherwise strong book, and there were small moments where it dragged – still, no book is perfect, and for me, all the novels in the Wallflowers series are not merely readable but repeatable.

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What I Did for a Duke (Julie Anne Long, Pennyroyal Green #5)

4.5 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
This book has wonderfully drawn characters that are complex, yet easy to relate to – both of our protagonists are at initially cross purposes (she is in love with her childhood sweetheart, he is in love with no one, and wants merely to use her for revenge), but their internal growth/self-realizations, as well as their journey towards each other is wonderfully believable, very passionate and also thoroughly engaging for the reader. There are times when the writing gets a little too cutesy/farcical for me, and the timeline in which the story unfolds makes it borderline unbelievable… all of which pulls me out of the story and makes me give it a less than perfect rating. That said, it’s been a long time since I’ve been this engrossed in a historical romance.

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