DANGER ON THE MOUNTAIN
When Heather Jacobs climbs a Montana mountain to pay respects to her late father, the last thing she expects is to be running for her life. But she's living a real-life cat-and-mouse chase, trying to escape a punishing foe from her guide Zane Scofield's past. How can a California city girl help outwit a ruthless criminal dead set on scouring the wilderness to kill them?
Though Zane knows their pursuer and his nefarious motives far too well, he's not sure why the man is after him now. Only his witsand an unlikely partner in the determined woman fighting beside himcan save them. But Zane's also battling a past that's threatening to swallow him wholeand take Heather along with him.
Wildly and violently intense non-stop action with twists in the plot that kept me on the edge through the book, not being able to put the kindle down until at the very end.
If you are a fan of Hunger Games type of hunting like battles not only against the unpredictable nature but the evil nature of a man and their greed, culprits that are willing to do anything to achieve their goals, you are going to love this story.
The action starts from the very beginning of the tale and it just keeps going. It is bloody, violent, and cruel and both Zane and Heather will be tested to their very limits, emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually until they can only draw their strength from the Lord, and pray that they will survive.
While running for their lives, Zane and Heather has to face their past and their relationships with their fathers. The reason they are on the Montana mountain is Heather's father. The reason they are hunted is the former father-figure of Zane's life. The web of relationships between Heather and Zane, their past, their connection, and their future was interesting and well played in the tale, giving it more human interest amongst the assaults and violence. The twist that it was Heather's father who taught Zane about God and salvation was a beaut. It really brought it home to Heather that her father was not the man she thought he was, and that he was a worth getting to know, even if only through the stories Zane told. The influence a person can have on other, a father figure to a young mind, was gracefully underlined throughout the story.
While the romantic side of the story had to stay in the background through most of the tale, as Zane and Heather are struggling on all the fronts, mainly to stay alive, the growing feelings of admiration and adoration between them was easy to spot. They were forced to work as a team by the situation, yet they chose to do it as a seamless duo, not leaving the other behind even at the risk of their own life.
Simply said, I love this story. The combination of physical, mental, and spiritual melee was well united, giving each of the issues enough space to built a believable case, yet at the same time bringing the story into levels of intensity rarely experienced. The characters with their struggles were lifelike and real, it was easy not only to like them but to relate to them. The family ties are an intriguing addition, and this story left me gasping at the end, feeling like I had held my breath through the tale, just praying for survival and redemption. Amazing way to end this year, truly with a bang of a tale!
~ Five Spoons
THE COWGIRL OF HIS DREAMS
Jen Taylor is this close to becoming a world-champion barrel racer. But when tragedy strikes bull rider Colt Mead, she puts her ambitions on holdtemporarily. The playboy of the circuit suddenly has a child depending on him. She can't let her friend go it aloneno matter how much he hurt her
Colt knew Jen deserved better than a rootless bull rider. But caring for his orphaned half sister makes him realize how much he wants to be part of a family. And that family won't be complete without the woman he loves as much more than a friend. Will she give up her dream to be part of his?
Emotionally charged story about finding your place, your destiny, growing up to be the person you are supposed to be and taking on responsibility.
I was enthralled with the honest inside look into the rodeo world the story gives us. There are the glorious moments from eight to fifteen seconds where adrenaline is high and the crowds are cheering, when you are at the top of the world, or at least on top of the bull or a horse, and life is great. But there are also those moments when the doubts, worries, and weariness hits the competitors. The long and lonely trips from town to town and event to event, keeping up with the score and trying to stay on the top, it all takes a toll on the riders, both physically and mentally.
The friendship between Colt and Jen is laden, the mutual attraction is muddying up the waters, bringing tension and awkward moments between them. But still Jen takes the risk with her career and her emotional wellbeing to take a week off from the rodeo circus to be with Colt when the bad news from home reaches him and he needs help and support.
Most of us have that feeling of wanting to make something with our lives, we thrive to make it better, make our parents proud, some even aim to the top with every step their take. Colt's relationship with his father has been quashed years ago when he took on the road and left home. He stood up for his cousin, yet felt guilty of leaving his little half-sister behind. Now he has a chance to fix that, to stand up for little Meg, but that requires him to leave other dreams behind him.
I loved seeing Colt grow and mature through the story as he struggles with his priorities and responsibilities, making new plans for the future where Meg is in the center stage. His feeling towards Jen is part of the equation, even though he is painfully aware Jen has her goals set on the rodeo circus and making it to the top in Las Vegas. The struggle he had was real and tormented, his pain and concerns evident, his doubts about himself, his abilities to raise Meg, about their future are troublesome since it all came into about his character as money wasn't a concern for him or Meg.
The poignant journey the characters are taking is sensitive and touching. The emotions of the little girl in mourning, with Colt's worries of the future, Jen's need to make something with her life, to prove to herself and the people of her hometown that she can make it, to the roaring passion and affection between Colt and Jen, it all provided a story that hit directly to the my heart. It was easy to relate to the characters and to the turbulence in their lives, I felt for them and with them, from triumph to the despair. A deep and emotionally complex journey, mixed with the sports of rodeo and meaningful, love filled romance.
~ Four Spoons
By: Linda Howard
Releasing December 27, 2016
For Morgan Yancy, an operative and team leader in a paramilitary group, nothing comes before his job. But when he’s ambushed and almost killed, his supervisor is determined to find out who’s after the members of his elite squad—and why. Due to worries that this unknown enemy will strike again, Morgan is sent to a remote location and told to lay low and stay vigilant. But between a tempting housemate he’s determined to protect and a deadly threat waiting in the shadows, keeping under the radar is proving to be his most dangerous mission yet.
The part-time police chief of a small West Virginian mountain town, Isabeau “Bo” Maran finally has her life figured out. She’s got friends, a dog, and a little money in the bank. Then Morgan Yancy shows up on her doorstep. Bo doesn’t need a mysterious man in her life—especially a troublemaker as enticing and secretive as Morgan.
The harder they fight the intense heat between them, the closer Morgan and Bo become, even though she knows he’s hiding from something. But discovering the truth could cost Bo more than she’s willing to give. And when Morgan’s cover is blown, it might just cost her life
A charming and captivating tale where the small town living with its drama and triumphs are mixed into the dangerous world of espionage and international crime.
The suspense and action in the story are brutal and lethal. The murder attempt against Morgan so clever it leaves the GO-team with no clues, and danger lurking around every corner.
As the encounters with the large scale criminals are located in the beginning and the end of the story, there's an ample time and opportunity for Bo and Morgan to get to know each other, learn to trust each other and develop a relationship.
I really enjoyed the characters, both Bo and Morgan are likable, charming, and relatable. In the relationship they are equal, the openness and honesty between them are refreshing. There's nothing instantaneous about their relationship that gets deeper, sweeter, and more meaningful as time goes by.
Tricks, Bo's dog, steals the show at every turn. She has a serious princess complex. She has sass more than a teenage girl, and her loyalty and loving is something everyone on her path will get a taste of.
The people in Hamrickville with their everyday life and its turmoils get a lots attention in the tale. The entertainment is guaranteed, and if I wasn't laughing at the tactics of Tricks, the princess, someone else in the town was making me smile for sure.
With over forty print books in my library from the author, I am a true fan of Linda Howard's writing. It is detail oriented, with delightful and lovable characters, the stories make you smile with the humor, sigh with the sweet and tender romance, and bite your nails with the harsh and forceful, often deadly battles for justice and survival. Troublemaker is no different in that regard, from fights at the bakery, domestic trouble that involves the whole town, to large scale murder attempts, the conflicts are constant and potent. Yet the engaging characters with the details of their lives balance the story bringing out the humor and cheer, the tender and passionate adoration between Bo and Morgan create a wishful hope for the future, and Tricks with her antics and attitude brought out the belly laughs. This story was truly a big time treat with thrilling entertainment
~ Four Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
From TROUBLEMAKER by Linda Howard. Copyright © 2016 by Linda Howard. Reprinted by permission of William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.
It was dark, the other side of nine-thirty, when he pulled into his parking slot at the condo. It had been late when he’d docked the Shark, then he’d cleaned his tackle and locked it away before heading home. He’d also made a brief stop at a grocery to cover his basic food needs; he hooked the plastic bags on his fingers and dragged them with him as he slid out of the seat. A click of the remote locked the truck.
The condos were at least thirty years old, six rows of two-story buildings made of brick and pebbled concrete. He supposed the effect was supposed to be modern and uncluttered—and maybe it had been thirty years ago, but now it was nothing more than butt-ugly. Each ground-floor unit, like his, had its own little patio, while the upper-story condos had balconies that struck him as fairly useless but that were used a lot during the summer for grilling and such.
The plastic bags rustled and banged against his left leg with every step, reminding him of why he hated buying groceries. After the fact, he always thought that he should throw a backpack in his truck and leave it there for hauling in what few groceries he bought, but he wasn’t home often enough for it to be a habit so he’d forget about the backpack. He’d also almost forgotten he didn’t have any coffee left, but the grocery’s sign had caught his eye and he’d whipped into the parking lot without time to signal, resulting in a few indignant horn blasts. Couldn’t be helped; he had to have coffee.
A concrete support pillar and some tall shrubbery partially blocked his view of the condo building, something that grated but the homeowners’ association wasn’t willing to do away with part of its mature landscaping and shady trees just because he didn’t like it. He couldn’t explain that the greenery provided points of ambush because civilians simply didn’t get shit like that, so he dealt with it. It wasn’t as if he had a lot to worry about; the crime rate in these units was very low, and was in fact a selling point for the young families who made up the majority of residents.
Still—habits were a bitch, but he couldn’t ignore half a lifetime of training. To keep from walking around a blind corner, he swung wide into the street the way he always did so he was approaching straight on; there wasn’t a lot of traffic in the condo development, and he didn’t often have to wait until a car passed.
But even with a direct approach, he still didn’t like it. Sometimes, such as now, he liked it less than at other times, and he couldn’t have said why. He didn’t have to; instinct was what it was.
He stopped in his tracks.
Sometimes . . . such as now.
The sudden surge of awareness was like an electric shock, sending all of his senses into hyperalert. He instinctively moved his right hand to the pistol snugged into the holster at the small of his back even as he tried to pick up any movement in the shrubbery that shouldn’t have been there, anything that was responsible for making the back of his neck suddenly prickle. He couldn’t see anything, but still his senses were screaming. Something was there, even if it wasn’t anything danger--
The thought hadn’t completely formed when the shadows of the shrubbery moved slightly, black on black. More adrenaline shot through his system, and Morgan acted without thought, training taking over as he dropped the plastic bags and dove to the left, leaving his right hand free as he pulled his weapon.
His body was still airborne, stretched out, when he saw a faint flash and a sledgehammer hit him in the chest.
He had two distant but clear thoughts: Suppressor. Subsonic round.
He slammed to the ground, the impact almost as jarring as the sledgehammer to the chest. He rolled with it, the pistol grip fitting into his palm as if his hand and the weapon had been made together, one functioning unit. One part of his brain knew he’d been hit and hit hard, but the other part stayed ruthlessly focused outward, intent on doing what he needed to do. He fired toward where he’d seen the flash, the sound sharp in the crisp night air, but he knew only a rank amateur would stay in the same place so he tracked his next shot away from the shrubbery, following the barely seen black-on-black shadow, and pulled the trigger again.
His mind disconnected from the shock waves of pain rolling through his body because that was the only way he could function. His thoughts raced, analyzing probabilities and angles of fire, selecting the best option even as adrenaline overrode the devastation and kept his body moving. Without being aware that he was moving, he rolled behind a fireplug, and didn’t realize where he was until he was already there. A fireplug wasn’t much cover, but it was some.
His vision was wavering, things rushing at him then drawing back, as if pushed and pulled by an invisible tide of air. Peripherally, he was aware of entrance lights coming on, of curtains being pulled back as his neighbors peeked out to see what the hell was going on. He blinked fiercely, trying to stay focused. Yes—the increase of light brought a man’s form into dim view and he fired a third shot, controlled the upward kick of the muzzle, fired again. The dark form toppled to the ground and lay still.
God, his chest hurt. Shit. This had really fucked up his tattoo.
His vision wavered again, but he grimly held on, keeping his weapon trained on the downed threat. “Down” didn’t mean “out.” If he let go, let the darkness come, the other guy might get up and finish the job. Dead didn’t count until it was confirmed dead, and he couldn’t confirm shit right now.
But doors were opening, people were shouting. The sounds were distorted and strangely far away, the lights fading. Through the growing shadows he thought he saw some of the braver souls venturing out, investigating the gunfire. Words swam at him, around him, and some of them sank into his consciousness.
“Shawn! Are you crazy?” A woman’s voice, both angry and afraid.
“Just call the cops,” said a man—maybe Shawn, maybe someone else.
“I already did,” said a third voice.
“What the hell is going on?”
More noise, more voices added to the chorus as people began approaching, cautiously at first, then with more confidence when nothing else happened. Morgan tried to call out, say something, make any kind of noise, but the effort was beyond him. He could feel his breath hitching as the distant pain rolled closer, like a tidal wave that was about to swamp him.
This might be it for me, he thought, and was almost too tired to care. He tried to control his breathing because he’d heard that hitching sound before and it was never good. He didn’t have to hang on long, he thought—maybe half an hour, if people would get the lead out of their asses and get him to the hospital. But half an hour seemed like an eternity when he wasn’t certain he could hang on even one more minute.
He rested his head on the concrete sidewalk, feeling the chill of it. His outstretched hand was just resting on the winter-dead grass at the edge of the sidewalk and he had the distant thought that it was kind of nice to be touching the earth. If this was it for him, well, it sucked to go, but all in all this wasn’t too bad, considering all the grisly ways he could have gone.
But, damn it, he was fucking pissed because if he died, he didn’t know who had killed him or, more importantly, why.
Someone bent over him, a vague shape swimming out of focus. He had to send MacNamara a warning, and with his last ounce of strength he gasped out, “Ambush.”
Linda Howard is the award-winning author of numerous New York Times bestsellers, including Up Close and Dangerous, Drop Dead Gorgeous, Cover of Night, Killing Time, To Die For, Kiss Me While I Sleep, Cry No More, and Dying to Please. She lives in Gadsden, Alabama with her husband and two golden retrievers.
Author Links: GOODREADS | AMAZON
Five brave military heroes have survived the hell of a Taliban prison to return home—and take on civilian missions no one else can. They’re the men of ARES Security. Highly skilled, intimidating, invincible, and one by one, tested again and again…
Lucas St. Clair’s prestigious family had a political future neatly planned out for him—one that didn’t include his high school sweetheart, Mia Ramon. Under their pressure, Lucas gave her up. But since surviving captivity, he’s a changed man—and a crucial member of ARES Security. When he discovers a dead man clutching a picture of Mia that bears a threatening message, his fiercest protective instincts kick in, and he knows he must go to her.
Mia has never forgiven Lucas for breaking her heart, and she’s convinced her feelings for him are in the past. But it’s soon clear that isn’t true for either of them. Now, determined to solve the crime and keep Mia safe, with his ARES buddies backing him up, Lucas will have to reconstruct the murder victim’s last days—and follow a lethal trail that leads right back to the fate of the woman he still loves…
I loved the first book of the series, Kill Without Mercy, and was so excited to get this title from NetGalley for a review. And the story is built on a suspenseful puzzle to be solved, a murder of an old friend that makes no sense, and a second chance romance that kindle the feelings from years past.
But from the beginning I got this feeling that I know this story, I even knew who the culprit was, and how it all went about before the clues came to light. That doesn't say the story wasn't good, just an odd feeling to have.
I liked Mia and her spunk and strength. She had made a good life for herself and was successful in all the areas of her life. Her obvious weakness was Lucas and the attraction between them. Because the fire from their past, from high school, was still burning like they were never separated for years.
Lucas is a rather complex character. He says he has left his family and their demands behind, but at every opportunity uses their name to get a headway. He says he is not going to touch the trust fund for nothing, and with the first opportunity is planning to use it to move forward. He left Mia when he was eighteen, with no explanations, breaking her heart. Now he forces his constant presence into her life, and she lets it happen. Lucas really dances on the thin line between being protective alpha male and being a forceful jerk who doesn't listen to others or respect them and their opinion. He has good intentions, and in his heart, he knows what he wants and why, yet he is not communicating this to Mia, even though he is supposed to be the master communicator that solves international crises. Lucas, or his behavior, frustrated me several times.
The story is told from several different points of view, and there's a hint of a secondary romance on the side as well, with Mia's friend Taylor and the detective. I'm still not sure what role that secondary romance played in the book, it didn't add to the plot considerably, but every time Taylor and Cooper got screen time, the point of view was switched to them and the flow of the tale interrupted. I really enjoyed both Taylor and Cooper, I was invested in them, I wanted to know more about them, but still wondering its necessity to the main plot.
The threats that Hauk got in the first book of the series are still in the background of this book, still being investigated and the mystery of them continues to carry on. Yet this story can easily be read as a stand-alone novel.
The action is fearful and intense, the deadly attempts to eliminate Mia at any cost or collateral damage are dire and dreadful. The danger gets on the doorsteps and too close too many times, yet the pieces of the puzzle are not fitting in neatly, it seems the culprit is hiding in plain sight.
The feelings, the attraction, the pull to each other between Mia and Lucas are a blazing fire as soon as they lay eyes on each other again. The past hurt and mistakes fade away, and there's only one goal in mind: to stay alive long enough to have another chance, a new opportunity to built something between them.
This was a good story, entertaining and engaging if lacking on originality (as I was so familiar with the plot and the twists in it). The intrigue towards the series is still strong, to learn more about the team and their destinies are still tickling in my mind and I'm looking forward to the next installment in the series.
~ Three Spoon with a teaspoon on the side
Being a whistleblower takes guts. It can also leave you scarred.
Whistleblower Shea Winters bore the consequences of an act of honesty, now she makes a living running a scam with her brother’s help.
Security expert Aaron Wells investigated her, is intrigued by her, and can’t deny the attraction he feels for the pretty scammer.
But being a whistleblower can also have dangerous consequences.
I fell in love with Angela Verdenius' stories after I read the first BBW (Big Beautiful Women) book of hers. The stories are filled with great fun banter, friends for life, Aussie customs and humor, scorching hot romance between women with curves, sass, and vigor, and alpha men who adore their women, love their curves and take protectiveness to a new level of intense.
Shea and Aaron connect from the first time they meet. I loved how they are not denying the chemistry between them, but exploring it as soon as the time allows. Even with Aaron's tendencies to control any situation, Shea is his true equal as they surrender to the passion between them.
Shea is the guardian to her little brother Cole, and together they have developed a scam that will provide them a living after Shea lost her job and career for telling the truth. The book tells an intrigued tale of Shea and Cole finding their footing in the new community. After the devastating events of being scrutinized for being a whistle-blower and losing everything and everyone from their lives, learning to trust, to count on someone else, or asking for help are not something Shea is comfortable with, she would rather that no one knows her true identity, either.
Aaron, the security expert, is not only intrigued by Shea, he wants to protect her, keep her and Cole safe from the stalker, and the revenge the stalker is threatening with.
Aaron's large extended family soon embrace Shea and Cole. They give them the support and encouragement they need for the journey to find their inner strength again, to find their place in the community, and live an honest life.
The secondary characters are not only a great source of entertainment with their tactics but an important part of the plot development and moving the story along.
The physical danger that suddenly threat Cole and especially Shea is intense, giving the story another level of interest and spice.
At the beginning, the story moves on a bit slowly as the scene is set up and the players are introduced, but it speeds up from there with great energy and attitude, providing a tale of life lessons, affection, deep emotions, friends, lovers, and family. I felt joy, passion, pride, and fear as I connected with the story and the charming characters, lived with them in the moments, and cheered for them with their achievements. I treasure these stories, the joyful joshing they have, and loving adoration between the hero and the heroine.
~ Four Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
She thought her past was behind her.
After nearly dying at the hands of a madman in New Orleans a year ago, Zoe Renard has worked hard to put that trauma behind her and move on. With her man at her side she’s focused on her writing career and building a future together. Things are almost perfect between them, until a series of shocking events turns her world upside down again. An unforeseen threat is looming, and it’s more lethal than anyone realizes. Only this time, hers isn’t the only life at stake.
But the nightmare isn’t over yet.
HRT member Clay Bauer never expected to fall in love again, but what he has with Zoe is better than anything he ever could have imagined. After what happened to her in New Orleans he’s ever vigilant about her safety, so when a new threat emerges he’ll do everything in his power to keep her safe. But even a former SEAL can’t protect her from an enemy he can’t see coming. And by the time he realizes the true extent of the danger, it may be too late for them all.
Riveting tension and spellbinding action with fear palpable in the air. A story that left me once again completely hooked on Kaylea Cross's tales and the world of the HRT.
I thought the ready-made commitment and love couldn't hold the intensity to carry the book, I thought there couldn't be a conflict that monumental that could make the tale 'interesting'. I thought lots of things, and with this story, they were mostly wrong. Even though it took a moment to get the story rolling, it did build the energy and power and enthusiasm that I have grown to expect from the author.
Zoe and Clay were amazing in their first book, and they were able to outdo themselves in the second one. The passion, the adoration, the tenderness, and love is there. Yet there are doubts, questions, and even distrust that muddle the waters and causes friction. The loving is explicit and detailed as they show their passion to each other, the language at times rough as their express their thoughts and feelings.
The action is vehement and fast. I felt that it was mostly left in the background of the story as the issues between Zoe and Clay were dealt with amongst the life events for the team members. The team gets a lot of scene time on this novella and are an important part of the plot development. Yet the battle against the stalker brought the tension up quickly and got the heart raising insanely as they were fighting the lethal battle.
The ending provides a surprise for the followers of the series in a form of teaser of things that might come in the future. I wouldn't call it a cliffhanger, since it didn't leave this tale to hang, but there are interesting developments ahead for the HRT if the author follows that tidbit of a plot twist.
This story didn't only feel shorter and lighter in contents as the previous ones, it was indeed that in pages as well. I have noticed the trend of writing shorter books while the price stays the same as full-length ones, or even higher in some cases. This is not something that affected my rating of this title, just a note that I hope the author is not going to follow that path I have seen some other authors to take. Kaylea Cross has been in my top five favorite authors for a long time, and I hope she will keep writing those highly emotional, full impact, action and danger riddled full-length novels that I love.
The HRT is filled with strong, protective, loyal, take charge alpha males who are willing to do anything to keep the country and their loved ones safe. They love fiercely, they are loyal, trustworthy and true to their partners in life and to each other. Their women are capable, strong, and true equals to them.
Alluring and entertaining addition to the series where Zoe and Clay are tackling with the future of their relationship, filled with devotion and adoration, yet some questions and doubts arise just as the threatening stalker who has been hassling Zoe on her website, turns out to be so much more than anyone expected.
~ Four Spoons
A Soldier's Promise
Three years ago Daron McKay made a vow to his dying army buddy: watch over his wife, protect his child. But he never imagined he'd fall in love with mom and baby.
Now as Emma Shaw barely hangs on to her ranch and her daughter faces lifesaving surgery, the cowboy bodyguard is determined to see his promise through. But Emma doesn't want a hero. Especially one riddled with guilt. She'll make it on her own, just like she always has.
With Emma, Daron faces his most difficult assignment: showing the battle-scarred widow that letting go makes you stronger—and that loving is worth the risk…
A charming and touching story of Daron, Emma, and little Jamie, where healing of body, mind, and soul is taking place, where faith is restored, and love found, where a partnership of a sort is formed, friendship is the foundation to romance, and community support makes everyday living easier.
Daron is a hunted warrior, the images from his time in Afganistan don't allow him to rest, yet the nightmares keeping him awake able him to keep an eye on Emma and Jamie, to make sure they are okay, to keep them safe.
Emma is tired of just surviving, of being a charity case, of being the atonement for Daron's guilt. She is taking steps to get on with her life, to get an education, to get the financial situation better, to take care of Ace, her granddad, and to provide a good and stable life for Jamie, but it seems that after every step forward comes two steps back. Now her former brother in law is harassing her for money he owns to the drug dealers, Jamie needs a heart surgery, Ace was injured, and all she wants to do is lean on Daron for mental support, but not if he is there just because of pity and guilt.
As Daron helps Emma to keep them safe and secure, Emma teaches Daron about faith and forgiveness. And as life marches on, the feelings they have for each other take a new turn at the most turbulent time of their lives.
Emma and Daron were such a perfect pair, just what the other needed. Emma is strong, independent, and stubborn, so it isn't easy for her to make room for Daron in her life. But Daron doesn't give up on her. He knows what he wants, and his feelings for Emma are not going to go away or fade with time.
The journey of Daron and Emma is heartfelt and filled with lots of emotions. Life isn't easy, hardships are many, yet they learn to lean on their faith in God, and trust His guidance in their lives. And even though the story has its fair share of angst and drama, even danger, and menace, there's also joy, laughter, and smiles, and an adorable little girl with the sweetest disposition
~ Four Spoons
Two doctors are on thin ice as they race to save the world from a deadly disease.
Epidemic researcher Dr. Avery Thatcher has studied countless illnessesbut nothing prepares her for what she finds at a remote Antarctic base: the man she never wanted to see again and a mysterious ailment ravaging inhabitants. Avery will do whatever it takes to discover the illness's cause, and she vows to keep her heartbreaking history with Dr. Grant Jones in the pasteven if reignited passion brings them dangerously close.
For Grant, ending this outbreak and regaining Avery's trust are vital. As their hunt to contain a lethal pathogen escalates, he'll put everything on the line to avert disaster. But will another insidious threat stop them both cold?"
The tension is high and the fear evident as a mysterious virus is killing staff members living at the Antarctic base. The limits of the environment set another kind of scare to the scene, the possibility of surviving the threat of the mystery disease is narrow as the knowledge of its ability to spread and havoc are unknown.
I have to say that the fear of the mystery disease was not only palpable on the pages of the story, the possibilities of the strength of it seeped into my dreams after reading the story at night. The chill of the Antartic air was nothing compared to the frigidity of the potentiality of the virus.
Grant and Avery, both extremely smart and capable, were warm, kind, and charming characters. The past was still, after ten years, strongly in their minds, had shaped them as human beings, the hurt, anger, and regret churning inside of them. Now faced with a possible second chance, possibly making up for the past hurt, misunderstandings, and years apart, they are also fighting the deadly virus they are not immune to themselves. The promise of the possibilities in the future might be in vain if they don't survive.
The chemistry between Grant and Avery was natural and nurturing like they never were apart. They both were willing to admit their responsibility with the past mistakes and hurt, learn from it and move on from it, not holding back anything. I loved their drama-free approach to life.
As the local culprits are known to the reader through most of the story, it is up to the doctors to put the pieces together, while they are running out of time to avoid a catastrophe on even larger scale.
A vivid scene where Avery is fighting for her life, on the edge between here and there, is so lifelike and authentic in nature, it hit me to the core with remembrance and gave a very personal connection to the tale.
An absorbing story filled with fierce danger, the kind that doesn't stop even when the bullets stop flying. In a form of an illness, the offenders are killing innocent to test their product's powers. Avery and Grant's struggle is not only to survive the virus but find its origin, find how it is spreading, who is spreading it, and maybe then they can start to built upon a future together they both have been dreaming about for years. A fascinating and impressive storyline that comes to live on the pages and keeps the reader's mind entertained.
~ Four Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
It will take a Christmas miracle for two very different souls to find each other in this perfectly festive fairy tale of New York!
Hopeless romantic Eva Jordan loves everything about Christmas. She might be spending the holidays alone this year, but when she's given an opportunity to house-sit a spectacular penthouse on Fifth Avenue, she leaps at the chance. What better place to celebrate than in snow-kissed Manhattan? What she didn't expect was to find the penthouse still occupied by its gorgeous—and mysterious—owner.
Bestselling crime writer Lucas Blade is having the nightmare before Christmas. With a deadline and the anniversary of his wife's death looming, he's isolated himself in his penthouse with only his grief for company. He wants no interruptions, no decorations and he certainly doesn't appreciate being distracted by his beautiful, bubbly new housekeeper. But when the blizzard of the century leaves Eva snowbound in his apartment, Lucas starts to open up to the magic she brings…This Christmas, is Lucas finally ready to trust that happily-ever-afters do exist?
Take a cook, an author, New York, Christmas and you already have won more than half of my heart. Put them all into a romance novel, give the characters wit and sass, depths you are nearly afraid to look into, sensuality that melts the pages, and I am all yours. The set up was so perfect for me, I couldn't have asked for more from a romance novel, they were even snowed in, a scenario that I love. And then I meet the characters in this scenario and surely fell in love them as well.
At first, they seem like the opposites of any scales, but the more their personalities are revealed, from the little quirks to their big secrets they are starting to make two sides of a whole, so perfectly twined together that they are the ideal match for each other. And how all that came about is just brilliantly done.
Each step that Eva and Lucas have to take to get to know each other better is like an intricate dance, two steps forward, one back, to the side, and then again. And each step took them deeper with the knowledge of the other's life, thoughts, likes, habits, secrets. The ease they experience in the other's company, the honesty, the openness, the candor is refreshing and energetic. Their calm acceptance of the team they form, the room and space they give for the other to be in their life, there was this serenity, calmness about it that I liked, while at the same time it was insanely sensual and out of control passionate when they let their feelings roam.
I enjoyed how the story was more focused on developing the relationship than drama and angst. And when drama rose its head they were both willing to accept their fault and responsibility for creating it. They support each other, they champion for each other, protect when that was needed, give room to mourn, to just be close when that was vital.
Even though I didn't think the circle of friends play as big of a role in this story as they did in the previous one, they still greatly contribute to the plot, and to the development of the relationship between Eva and Lucas. I adore that group of friends, all so individual and unique, making the ideal circle together. They have touched my heart so that I now want these first three books in the series on paperback as well, these stories are definitely books you want to treat as keepsakes and keep reading them again.
Eva and Lucas made me laugh out loud with the delightful dialog, the hardships in their lives touched my heart, their deep, strong emotions, and turbulence in their lives had me in tears. I admire how the generations before are respected and honored. There's just something about the author's style that speaks straight to my heart and makes me fall completely in love with the stories, characters, and their journeys to meet their destinies
~ Five Spoons
USA Today bestselling author Sarah Morgan writes contemporary romance and her trademark humour and sensuality have gained her fans across the globe. She has been nominated 4 times for the prestigious RITA® Award from the Romance Writers of America and has won the award twice. Sarah lives near London, England, and when she isn't reading or writing she loves being outdoors.
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Her Warrior Protector
Carter Bear Den is a proud Apache of the Turquoise Canyon Reservation. The former US Marine is a member of the Turquoise Guardians working to protect his people and their land. When he discovers a grisly mass shooting at the Lilac Copper Mine, Carter's one thought is to find Amber Kitcheyan.
After breaking her engagement to Carter and relinquishing her membership with the reservation, Amber found work at the mine. Now she is the sole survivor of the shootingat best a witness, at worst a suspect.
But Carter swears to protect the only woman he has ever loved, even if it means losing everything else.
High energy action from the page one pulled me into the dangerous world of mass murders and manhunt. Lilac's bravery in the face of the madman is admirable, Carter happening into the scene of the crime more than a consequence.
The connection between Carter and Lilac was broken, damaged by the incidents years ago caused by lack of trust and young minds. Now facing the constant deadly danger they have to find a way to each other again, at least for a long enough to work together as a team to survive. The peril seems to follow them too easily, every exposure turns deadly, and the gunmen must have inside information to be able to catch them at every turn of the plans.
The Native American culture and society with their beliefs and habits have always fascinated me, yet here I felt a bit unknowledgeable as I was reading the story, there were details that I would have wanted more information about, yet there were other details that were repeated several times.
The attraction between Carter and lilac is palpable, but they didn't really have the opportunity to work on the past hurts, misunderstanding and the trust, respect issues they had before. The feelings they had so many years ago were awakened again, but nothing from the past was really solved in a true matter.
This story was clearly a part of a series, more so than most of the Intrigue stories, and I would recommend reading the previous books first to make it easier to follow the storyline and understand the dynamics between the different characters. I had to go back several times to check if I had missed information. Of course, this might be an issue of the advance reader copy I had, and the editing fixed into the final print of the book, I do hope so.
The story was filled with plot twists, battles, and conflicts. The constant friction and rivalry between the different law enforcement forces and inside information being shared with the culprits added to the tension and strife.
The ending took me completely by surprise, both on the romantic and suspense side. I'm not saying it was an actual cliffhanger but to get a conclusion to the crimes you have to keep reading the series. The story was filled with energy and thrive, the romance had a lot of possibilities, the action was savage and cruel. I liked it, it was entertaining, had lots of potential, but it didn't feel finished, complete, on both aspects of the tale, I was left wanting more information, development, and insights, maybe these wishes will be granted on the next instalments of the series, but here I was left a bit hanging.
~ Three Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
MY GRADING SCALE:
5 Spoons - Amazing, memorable story that I loved, and want to read again.
4 Spoons - Fantastic, entertaining story
3 Spoons - Good story, but not much that stood out
2 Spoons - A story with some issues, that were a problem to me
1 Spoon - Not for me
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