Royally Romanced by Marie Donovan Tale of the Dressmaker and the Prince

Once upon a time, there lived an Italian prince named Georgio Di Leone. He was a stressed-out prince...and a very protective one. So, when his little sister announces she's getting married, he flies--first-class, of course--to the enchanted kingdom of New York City, where he meets Renata Pavoni, a wedding-dress maker who is all vintage pinup girl with twenty-first-century sex appeal.

Once they ride off together in his limousine, they indulge in some serious makeout action. But as things with her hot royal start to heat up, Renata wonders...can she find a "sexily ever after" with a real prince?


I'm not usually into the whole royalty thing but this book sounded interesting and I thought I would give it a go. Unfortunately, I found that it really wasn't my cup of tea.

Renata wasn't a bad character but I simply couldn't relate to her or root for her in any way. She was too brash and was written to epitomise every New Yorker stereotype and cliché you've ever heard. Georgio was fine but nothing overly special or someone that I would particularly swoon over. The pair's chemistry was only okay so it was surprising that the plentiful sex scenes were so scorchingly hot!

Having said that, at times this book read like random sex scenes with filler in between. Nothing exciting seemed to happen and it was hard to suspend belief that any of the things that did happen were likely. I'm sad to say that this was quite a forgettable romance. I won't be picking up the next two books in the series (Royally Seduced and Royally Claimed) and I'm sorry to say that I just can't recommend it. 2 stars.


224 pages

Jane Austen Guide to Happily Ever After by Elizabeth Kantor you stopped believing in happily ever after? Women today are settling for less than we want when it comes to men, relationships, sex, and marriage. But we don't have to, argues Elizabeth Kantor. Jane Austen can show us how to find the love we really want. 

In The Jane Austen Guide to Happily Ever After, Kantor reveals how the examples of Jane Austen heroines such as Elizabeth Bennett, Elinor Dashwood, and Anne Elliot can help us navigate the modern-day minefields of dating, love, relationships, and sex. 

By following in their footsteps-and steering clear of the sad endings suffered by characters such as Maria Bertram and Charlotte Lucas-modern women can discover the path to lifelong love and true happiness. 

Charged with honesty and humor, Kantor's book includes testimonies from modern women, pop culture parallels, the author's personal experiences and, of course, a thorough examination of Austen's beloved novels. 

Featuring characters and situations from all of Jane Austen's books (including unfinished novels, and stories not published in her lifetime), The Jane Austen Guide to Happily Ever After tackles the dating and relationship dilemmas that we face today, and equips modern women to approach our love lives with fresh insights distilled from the novels: 

* Don't be a tragic heroine 
* Pursue Elizabeth Bennet's "rational happiness" -learn what it is, and how you can find it 
* Don't let cynicism steal your happy ending 
* Why it's a mistake to look for your "soul mate" 
* Jane Austen's skeleton keys to a man's potential 
* How you should deal with men who are "afraid of commitment" (from Jane Austen's 8 case studies) 
* Learn how to arrange your own marriage-by falling in love the Jane Austen way.


At first glance, I expected this to be a fun and frothy book comparing dating in modern time to Jane Austen's - much like typical stocking filler fare. I was surprised and pleased to find this much more than I expected.

At a little over 360 pages and larger than a typical paperback, it feels fairly substantial (in a good way) and very good value for the price.

The premise of the book is that Jane Austen and her contemporaries have much to teach us with regards to love, romance, relationships and men. The author aims to teach the reader what to do in order to get yourself into a better position to have all of the aforementioned. Unfortunately she doesn't tell us where to find the good men!

I enjoyed the book and found it intelligent, refreshing and thought provoking. The writing was quite sharp and thankfully not disparaging to either sex. I think that some people may find the author's writing style a little bit harsh so I would suggest that this book may be like marmite depending on your frame of mind and own personality.

The book was also well researched and would make an interesting read for those interested in the Regency, with or without the love and dating aspect. This book is still fun but it's a lot more in depth than I expected.


386 pages

* I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. *

The Most to Lose by Laura Landon“Some day, when you have the most to lose…I’ll take it all.”
Jonah Armstrong, Earl of Haywood, and the Duke of Hadleigh were best friends until a scandal involving Hadleigh’s fiancée destroyed their friendship. Three years later, Jonah returns from the Crimea as a war hero and London’s most eligible bachelor, setting the gossip afire and fanning Hadleigh’s long-simmering rage into an inferno. Hadleigh has not forgotten his old friend’s betrayal, and now that Jonah has returned, he will take his revenge. 

Lady Cecelia Randolph has loved Jonah Armstrong for as long as she can remember. The moment they share a passionate kiss, she dares to hope that he feels the same for her and that his attention is driven by more than his desire to taunt her brother or his desperation for her dowry. It isn’t until Hadleigh’s quest for vengeance nearly destroys her that she realizes that Jonah loves her enough to risk everything to protect her. 


This book just didn't hit the mark with me. Everything was just okay. The characters were okay. The plot was okay. The writing, fine. It just never elevated itself to something special that set itself apart from all the other romances I like to read.

I think that my main issue was with the lack of sensuality and sexual tension. I never felt that the two main characters really felt much for each other and even then, I couldn't understand their motivations. Was Jonah really falling for Cecilia or was it all a ruse? We were told but weren't shown so I didn't really believe it.

Another little bugbear of mine is when two main characters have similar names (or at least names with the same initial). Hadleigh did this while Haywood did that - for some reason I can't easily distinguish between them which draws me out of the story as I try and figure out what's going on. That could just be a personal idiosyncrasy so I haven't let this affect my rating overly much.

If you have this book and are happy with a sweet, uncomplicated Victorian romance story then it's certainly not offensive. But if you're looking for something a little bit, well, more, then I can't really recommend this to you.


293 pages

* I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. *

The Wife Trap by Tracy Anne Warren orchestrating a scandalous high-society ruse, Lady Jeannette Brantford is banished from her family's estate in England and sent to live with boring elderly cousins in the Irish countryside. But Jeannette's exile is surprisingly eventful. En route to her dreaded destination, she encounters Darragh O'Brien, a devilishly handsome architect who transforms Jeannette's punishment into a delicious whirlwind of wits, words, and undeniable passion.

But Jeannette is determined to land herself a titled husband and no Irish commoner is going to make her change her mind...


I have read a few books by Tracy Anne Warren and have found them very hit or miss. For me, this one was definitely a miss.

This is the second book in the 'Trap' trilogy after The Husband Trap but before The Wedding Trap. I haven't read any of the others and still understood it although I'm sure the author meant for them to be read in order. Based on this book, I won't be purchasing either of the others.

I have to admit to having a good giggle to myself when I read that the hero's name was Darragh O'Brien. Like other reviewers have said, this brought to my mind Dara O'Briain (from Mock the Week) and I couldn't get him out my head which was unusual in so many ways!

My main problem with the book was the heroine. I didn't like her. She was spoiled, demanding and pretty much an all round unlikeable person. As such this coloured the rest of the book as I didn't particularly want, or care if, she and Darragh got together.

The storyline was okay but the text is sprinkled with modern Americanisms and stereotypical statements that are always disappointing and pull you out of the story.

Okay, so the story isn't that bad but if you've only got a few hours to spare and want to read romance then there are far superior books out there. It's not terrible but it's not a book I would go out of my way to recommend.


381 pages

For Services Rendered by Patricia Kay Cinderella story . . .

Claire Kendrick didn't know what to think when she was summoned to the 50th floor to meet the president of Callahan, International. As handsome, blue-eyed Nick Callahan explained her special assignment --- writing an article about him for CEO Magazine --- Claire's apprehensions grew. There was something he wasn't telling her, something odd that she couldn't put her finger on. What did he really want from her?

Her green eyes, golden hair, and striking beauty were the first things that had caught Nick's attention. Then he had her background checked out, and he was doubly impressed. Claire Kendrick was a smart, hard-working, loyal employee. She was also supporting her mother, who needed expensive full-time medical care. All in all, Claire was the perfect candidate for the position Nick needed to fill.

While researching the article on Nick, Claire found herself awed by the success story of the man who'd made his first million before he was thirty. His brilliant blue eyes were mesmerizing, his sexy smile distracting, his hidden, kind nature surprising and admirable. And then, out of the blue, Nick offered her a startling proposition. He would support Claire and her mother in exchange for services rendered --- as a wife and mother to his children!
It would have been a fantasy, a dream come true, a Cinderella story --- except for one oversight. Could Claire exist in a marriage of convenience? What kind of marriage would it be . . . without love? 


Although not billed as such, this book reads very much like a Modern Mills and Boon romance. It follows many of the traditional formulae - down on her luck female, strong, successful man and a relationship that starts off as one thing and turns into something more.

I liked the premise of the story and both Claire and Nick were characters that I could root for. Claire was strong despite her situation and I did like that Nick didn't walk all over her. Nick was strong, silent and arrogant but I still liked him as he wasn't too alpha male. The pair didn't have much depth but I could still enjoy them and their interactions.

Despite having a publication date of 2012, this book was clearly written many years ago (1993 as I've just found out). For the most part this doesn't matter although I was quite taken aback and amused by the reference to listening to cassette tapes in the car!

As another reviewer mentioned, there are numerous mentions of fur coats in the book which I really didn't like. Even though this book is a reprint, I would have thought the author would have removed these before publishing it in this day and age.

Despite that, the writing was good and, at one point in particular, quite emotional. I had no problems finishing it although I would have liked to see an epilogue to find out what happened to Nick and Claire after their happily ever after.

If you like the Mills & Boon Modern line or a quick romance then I think you would like this book. It's quick, enjoyable and worth a look at such a low price. 3 stars.


202 pages

Valentine Surprise by Jennifer Conner
For Cecilia, Valentine’s Day stands as a glaring remind of what she is-alone and in love with her best friend’s brother, Lee.

When Lee asks Cecilia for computer help with signing up for an on-line dating service, will this be her chance to get him out of her head and her heart for good?

But, does Cupid have his own Valentine surprise in store for this couple?


This is a very short story (at about 23 pages) so it doesn't take you long to read it through. Because of its short length there isn't much character development or depth to either Cecilia or Lee.

Even with it's very short length I would have liked a little more decisiveness from Lee - or at least a little more personal insight into his own feelings for Cecilia - but it's a sweet tale none the less.

There are a few minor typos and it's over in the blink of an eye but it's a well-written and enjoyable tale that's a nice little read while it's free! 3 stars.


23 pages

Sugar Rush by Donna Kauffman baker extraordinaire Leilani Trusdale left the bustle of New York City for Georgia's sleepy Sugarberry Island, she didn't expect her past to follow. 

Yet suddenly, her former boss, Baxter Dunne, aka Chef Hot Cakes, the man who taught her everything pastry, wants to film his hit cooking show in her tiny cupcakery. The same Chef Hot Cakes whose molten chocolate brown eyes and sexy British accent made Lani's mouth water and her cheeks blush the colour of raspberry filling - stirring all kinds of kitchen gossip, much of which Lani wished was true. 

Lani's friends are convinced that this time around, Baxter is the missing ingredient in her recipe for happiness. But convincing Lani will be a job for Baxter himself. And he'll need more then black velvet frosting to sweeten the deal...


This is the first book in The Cupcake Club series which combines the two wonderful worlds of cupcakes and romance which are the two reasons I felt drawn to this book.

I've not had much luck with romance books that have a backdrop of food or restaurants but this one does manage to work that well into the storyline. The descriptions of the cakes sounded amazing and I like the fact that you get a couple of recipes (with frostings) at the back of the book to try yourself.

Apart from that, unfortunately I wasn't overly keen on the characters. I could identify with, and didn't dislike, Leilani but she didn't have enough sparkle to really make me root for her. Baxter wasn't my cup of tea for two reasons: 1) because he was 'British' which paved the way for embarrassing attempts at Brit speak and accents, although thankfully not so often as to make the book unreadable. The second reason is that right at the beginning it was mentioned that Baxter was younger than Leilani. Although it probably doesn't bother most people, and it was only by three years, I just don't like that dynamic and it made me disappointed from the start. It turned out to never be mentioned again which made me wonder why it was mentioned in the first place. There were some supporting characters but a little too many to really care for them and none that stood out except for crazy Alva.

The plot also fell a little flat for me as I just didn't feel that much happened. If Leilani and Baxter weren't discussing one thing, they were talking about something else. Sometimes Leilani would discuss things with her father or her best friend and then sometimes other people would discuss other things that were happening. I'm all for conversation and banter between characters but not at the expense of moving the story forward or having something interesting happen.

My last point - which didn't affect my rating of the book but still has to be mentioned - was the cover. The cupcakes on the front are to die for and I enjoyed staring at them and wishing I could eat them right up. On the back, however, is a photo of a couple and I swear that if they are a day over 18 I'll eat my hat. Perhaps that's just me getting older but they made me cringe.

Anyway - I wasn't much of a fan of this book so sadly can't recommend it. It wasn't terrible, the writing was okay but it just didn't capture my attention despite the delicious cupcakes. 2 stars.


336 pages

Season for Temptation by Theresa Romain Sisters. . .
Julia Herington is overjoyed when her stepsister, Louisa, becomes engaged--to a viscount, no less. Louisa's only hesitation is living a life under the ton's critical gaze. But with his wry wit and unconventional ideas, Julia feels James is perfect for Louisa. She can only hope to find a man like him for herself. Exactly like him, in fact. . .

One Choice. . .
As the new Viscount Matheson, James wished to marry quickly and secure his title. Kind, intelligent Louisa seemed a suitable bride. . .until he met her stepsister. Julia is impetuous--and irresistible. Pledged to one sister, yet captivated by another, what is he to do? As Christmas and the whirl of the London season approach, James may be caught in a most scandalous conundrum, one that only true love, a bit of spiritous punch--and a twist of fate--will solve. . .


From the start this book sets itself out as light and frothy. Julia is portrayed as a quirky and unconventional heroine while James is an honorable and likeable hero. Neither are offensive in any way but neither do they really stand out from the crowd. Their interactions are sweet but again not particularly memorable or overly romantic.

The same is true of the story. It plods along quite nicely with nothing startling or offensive happening. I couldn't understand the motivations of the characters for behaving as they did (especially Louisa) and couldn't help but want things to be wrapped up a little quicker than they ultimately were. As it was, it took almost two thirds of the story before James and Julia even kissed and there wasn't even any sexual tension to tide things over before it got to that point.

There were an alarming amount of modern language and Americanisms throughout the whole story which is irritating in any period book and pulls you completely out of the story. I also spent an unusual amount of time trying to figure out how the main family were related. It didn't matter to the story but I just couldn't understand it all until it was explained about 20 pages from the end.

All in all this was a sweet story that I read through quite happily. I'll probably not remember about it in a couple of days as, unfortunately, inoffensive and unassuming also means forgettable. 3 stars which is probably quite generous and not really a story I would go out of my way to recommend.


369 pages

Too Wicked To Wed by Cara Elliott
Outspoken and independent, Lady Alexa Bingham enjoys the heady freedom of making all her own decisions, even though the challenges of overseeing her family's country estate are daunting. But when a chance encounter with London's most notorious rake awakens a secret longing for adventure, she accepts her aunt's invitation for a Season in Town . . . only to find that breaking the rules of the ton has serious consequences.

The Earl of Killingworth uses his rakehell reputation to hide the fact that poverty has forced him to work for a living. As the owner of a gambling den and brothel, Connor has no time for glittering ballrooms or innocent young ladies. But after a reckless wager leaves him with a new business partner, he is forced to take a risky gamble . . . Will the cards fall in their favor? Alexa and Connor begin to play a dangerous game of intrigue and deception as they seek to outwit a cunning adversary who wants to put them permanently out of business. But if they are not careful, it is the flames of their own fiery attraction that may destroy them.


This story shot off at a quick pace with the action of Alexa and Connor's first meeting happening almost instantly and their first kiss not much later than that. That then set the standard for the story as for a long while that was as much as the plot amounted to - meeting and kissing, meeting and kissing, with different settings thrown in each time.

That aside, both Alexa and Connor were likeable enough characters although neither really stood out or really inspired me to care for them individually or as a couple. There were some secondary characters, Gryffin and Cameron - "The Hellhounds" whose books make up the second and third in The Lords of Midnight Trilogy - but they weren't particularly inspiring either. I had assumed that the other couples mentioned in the book were from previous stories by Elliott but can find no mention of their stories anywhere. This confuses me as it felt like I was expected to know these stories and these characters while reading this book.

Despite what I said earlier regarding the plot, I had absolutely no trouble finishing this book and did so quickly enough. The writing was fine, if a little pretentious and flowery for my tastes on rather too many occasions. There were also Americanisms and incorrect usage of British English which were annoying but luckily didn't happen too often to actually spoil the book. I didn't find the love scenes overly sexy or sensual - only a day later I can barely remember them which says something.

Overall, this was a nice story but nothing more than that. It won't be a story that I will remember but it's not offensive and it's worth a read if it's on your shelf or in your Kindle. 3 stars.


384 pages

Lords of Midnight Trilogy:


About That Night by Julie James

Though Rylann Pierce tried to fight the sparks she felt for billionaire heir Kyle Rhodes the night they met, their sizzling chemistry was undeniable. But after being stood up on their first date, Rylann never expected to see him again. So when she finds herself face to face with Kyle in a courthouse nine years later, she’s stunned. More troubling to the beautiful Assistant U.S. Attorney is that she’s still wildly attracted to him.


Just released from prison, Kyle Rhodes isn’t thrilled to be the star witness in a high-profile criminal case—but when Rylann comes knocking at his door, he finds she may be the one lawyer he can’t say no to. Still as gorgeous and sharp-tongued as ever, she lays down the law: she doesn’t mix business with pleasure. But Kyle won’t give up on something he wants—and what he wants is the one woman he’s never forgotten. . .


I have been a huge fan of Julie James since reading her first book and this one just cements her as an exceptional contemporary writer and one of my all time favourites.

Kyle first appeared in James' previous book, A Lot Like Love, which featured his twin sister's story. You don't have to have read that book or any of the others to understand and like this book although if you have read it then Jordan and Nick (as well as some of the supporting cast and Cameron and Jack from Something about You) make brief appearances which is always fun.

I'm always looking for a heroine that I can both like and root for and Rylann fits the bill. She's sassy, fiesty, fun and sarcastic yet retains a vulnerability that makes her extremely likeable. She's also smart and works hard which I like a lot. Kyle is a hard working, sexy and passionate man and one that I couldn't help but fall for. He may be an ex-con but don't let this put you off! Together the pair have such spark, chemistry and the banter was genius and had me laughing out loud on occasion.

Once again this book is set in the world of lawyers, the FBI and everything that entails. The storyline is realistic yet never getting bogged down in detail and makes for a book that I just couldn't put down. The storyline flows nicely and there's always something new to keep your interest. This is the kind of book that makes you want to live the characters lives and I finished it feeling rejuvenated while also feeling very sad that I couldn't keep reading.

If you like smart romances with sparkle and wit then I can't recommend this book highly enough. It's a real page turner and one which I enjoyed immensely. A very well deserved 5 stars.


305 pages

Marry Me, Maddie by Rita Herron
One sassy southern girl looking for the right man…

Two sexy men after her heart:

Bachelor # 1 – the long term boyfriend she just dumped

Bachelor # 2 – her overprotective brothers’ best friend

When the competition heats up, who will win her heart and her hand? 


I was so excited to read this story as I adore the storyline where a woman falls in love with her brother's best friend. It didn't take me long to realise that my anticipation was misplaced.

Maddie is a young and supposedly smart woman yet she is constantly bullied and undermined by her older brothers who apparently have her best interests at heart. They waited for her when she went on a night out, told her what she could and couldn't do and decided that she shouldn't have a career as she wasn't smart enough. I don't mind strong men but these guys were unbelievable.

I quite liked, or at least didn't actively dislike, Chase although he was a little bit weak when it came to his reasons for not being with Maddie. If he didn't like her then that would have been fine but it was all just a bit pointless as conflict, to be honest.

The book was the length of a regular novel at about 350 pages and I felt every single one of them. Each chapter seemed to be each character going over the same emotions, same problems and same dramas but in a different setting each time - I hate to say that I was genuinely bored. To add to that, we kept hearing about the unlikeable brothers and some 'mystery' regarding their parents. When it all came to a conclusion the result was farcical and far from funny which I'm assuming was the intention.

The inclusion of secondary characters was obviously to set up their own, future stories. I for one will not be purchasing them and definitely can't recommend this book, I'm sorry to say. 1 star.


349 pages

A Rogue by Any Other Name by Sarah MacLean a scoundrel wants, a scoundrel get...

A decade ago, the Marquess of Bourne was cast from society with nothing but his title. Now a partner in London's most exclusive gaming hell, the cold, ruthless Bourne will do whatever it takes to regain his inheritance - including marrying perfect, proper Lady Penelope Marbury.

A broken engagement and years of disappointing courtships have left Penelope with little interest in a quiet, comfortable marriage. How lucky that her new husband has access to such unexplored pleasures. Bourne may be a prince of London's underworld, but he vows to keep Penelope untouched by its wickedness - a challenge indeed as the lady discovers her own desires, and her willingness to wager anything for them...even her heart.


Sarah MacLean has been an auto buy for me ever since I read the wonderful Nine Rules... This story doesn't quite reach the same heights but I still loved it and definitely feel it's deserving of 5 stars.

Michael is my favourite kind of hero - tortured, full of angst and feels undeserving of, while really in need of, the love of a good woman. I also just adored Penelope. She appeared briefly in Eleven Scandals... but this book starts a new series (the Rules of Scoundrels Quartet) so there's no need to have read any books to understand and enjoy this one. Penelope was feisty and fun while also being quite vulnerable and naive at times. She was someone that I really rooted for from beginning to end.

The relationship between Michael and Penelope was filled with chemistry and passion. The letters that started off each chapter were a lovely addition and really built on the pair's past relationship. It was also easy to see the pair growing and falling in love which was a treat to read and kept me turning the pages at all hours.

I'm looking forward to the other stories in the series and would recommend this book to you if you like a fun and interesting romance with great characters and good storytelling. 5 stars.


399 pages

In the Mood by Ellen Fisher
Jude Patterson is a sexy but shy romance novelist who discovers the flowery language he's always used in historical love scenes doesn't translate well to contemporary romances. Alyssa Stone is a beautiful fan who offers to help him learn to write better love scenes.

Jude is fascinated by Alyssa, whose confident and sensual demeanor conceals a very vulnerable interior. Before long, he's the one showing her how to write love scenes... and maybe even how to write happy endings.


I liked the premise of this short story and, at the start with the introduction of Jude, I started to enjoy it. But then along came Alyssa and the story took a major nosedive.

Alyssa was such an unlikeable character that I just couldn't root for her in any way, shape or form. She wasn't relatable and her attitude towards Jude was horrible. I wondered why Jude even liked her but the descriptions made it clear that it wasn't for her winning personality. Even when the reasons behind her behaviour were revealed, I couldn't drum up any sympathy for her as it seemed so far fetched and ridiculous.

Together, Jude and Alyssa had little chemistry and the story plodded along without much happening of interest. By the end, while I did finish it, I was extremely bored and had little interest in the love story or how it ended up.

Lots of people seemed to enjoy this story but I'm afraid it just wasn't for me. At least it was free when I downloaded it but even then I really can't recommend it.


88 pages

Ex On The Beach by Lisa Scott’s trying to forget the fiancé who cancelled their wedding—until she sees her ex on the beach.

Heather should be celebrating her one year wedding anniversary instead of the first annual Parker Family Reunion. Then she sees her ex on the beach—and he wants her back. Now, their two families will stop at nothing to get them together. But is it too late for love?


This is a short story that's just under 40 pages and was free at the time I downloaded it.

Being so short, there's not much character development and I think I would have liked the story much better if it had just been a little bit longer.

Having said that, the writing is good and I read it easily from beginning to end in about 25 minutes. I could have loved both characters but they both made choices that I didn't much like and their chemistry didn't quite sizzle for me.

Again due to the short nature of the book, the ending came quickly and felt rushed. Overall this was a nice little story that, having picked it up for free, was worth a read if you have it on your kindle.


31 pages

Lady Sophie's Midnight Seduction by Dorothy McFalls
Lady Sophie, a self-avowed spinster, has been happy with her independence for many years...that is until Lord Benton-Black enters her world. Now she finds her nights haunted by this man who is determined to seduce her and make her his wife.


This was a short story that I counted at around 25 pages long so will only take you about 20 minutes from beginning to end.

Despite its short length I decided I liked the main characters and their relationship with each other. This was an erotic story and while it was steamy - it really didn't sizzle or heat up the pages overly much.

Having said that, the writing was fun (any book that features the word 'zounds!' gets points from me!) and I liked the characters, their interactions and the conclusion.

For a short, historical story that's not too expensive, you can't go wrong with this one. 4 stars.


23 pages

Love Letters by Lori Brighton Art of Seduction

Clara Cameron will do anything to escape her impending marriage to the odious Lord Desmond, even if it means posing nude for artist Brendon Evans, the man she once loved. It’s been years since they’ve seen each other, but Clara’s love for Brendon hasn’t diminished. Will Brendon recognize Clara and admit his feelings for the woman before Lord Desmond comes calling, claiming Clara for his own?

Meant For Me

For years Cynthia Shaw has replied to Gabriel Baston’s letters, pretending to be his fiancé, Cynthia’s wretched cousin Helen. When Gabriel appears at a masked ball and mistakes Cynthia for Helen, she can’t help herself and gives her innocence to the man she has loved for years. Will Lord Kennwick realize Cynthia was meant for him before it’s too late? 


This book contains two short, unconnected stories where love letters play a part in bringing the hero and heroine together.

The Art of Seduction

I liked the premise of this story although I wasn't completely in love with Brendan. I suppose he wasn't supposed to be your usual hero but he didn't really capture me to any great degree. I liked Clara and admired her for trying to get away from her situation in life. The pair had good chemistry although I didn't feel much spark during the love scenes. I also thought that there was a gaping plot hole when it was discovered that Brendan's sister had been writing letters to him about Clara. Overall still a likeable and readable story.

Meant for Me

In this story the heroine was strong despite her difficult position in life and I liked her character and her spirit. Unfortunately the hero was a little bit of an idiot although I suppose I can't blame him for being confused by all the machinations going on around him - I just wanted him to be a bit more aware! The story was cute but I have read a very similar story before which lessened my enjoyment somewhat.


Overall these were a readable and likeable set of stories. There were a couple of glaring typographical errors which always irritate and annoy me but the writing was still good and the stories were finished quickly. I debated between 3 and 4 stars for these stories but, despite having enjoyed them, there just wasn't enough spark for me to give them higher than 3 stars, I'm afraid. Having said that, this book is currently (at the time of writing) free from the Kindle store and you certainly can't go wrong with that!


97 pages

Once Upon a Winter's Eve by Tessa Dare
Some wallflowers bloom at night...

Violet Winterbottom is a quiet girl. She speaks six languages, but seldom raises her voice. She endured bitter heartbreak in perfect silence. The gentlemen aren't beating down her door.
Until the night of the Spindle Cove Christmas ball, when a mysterious stranger crashes into the ballroom and collapses at Violet's feet. His coarse attire and near-criminal good looks would put any sensible young lady on her guard. He's wet, chilled, bleeding, and speaking in an unfamiliar tongue.
Only Violet understands him. And she knows he's not what he seems. 

She has one night to draw forth the secrets of this dangerously handsome rogue. Is he a smuggler? A fugitive? An enemy spy? She needs answers by sunrise, but her captive would rather seduce than confess. To learn his secrets, Violet must reveal hers—and open herself to adventure, passion, and the unthinkable... Love.

Warning: The heroine packs a pistol, the hero curses in multiple languages, and together they steam up a cold winter’s night. 


This novella is a short story that is part of Dare's Spindle Cove series. This story follows A Night to Surrender and comes before A Week to Be Wicked. I've not read either and found that this story was an intriguing insight into the series and didn't need to be read in order to be understood.

The characters in this story were great. Violet was a quiet girl but didn't fall into the cliche of being shy with it. She was feisty, honest and bold - I really liked her. Equally, the hero was everything I like in a leading man - brooding, mysterious and willing to sacrifice anything for the woman he loves. The pair had great chemistry and I really liked them as a couple.

This is an implausible, fun and feisty romp with characters I really enjoyed and an almost farcical, fast-paced storyline that was a delight from start to finish. It will only take you a little while to read, but the price is right and the story is a great way to spend an hour or so. If you're a fan of Tessa Dare or just looking for a light and frothy tale to take your mind off things for a while then I would recommend this to you. 5 stars.


96 pages

Spindle Cove series in order:

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