Tag Archive | reading

Its cold outside and she is conflicted inside

 The Book Of Love (Baby Its Cold Out)

Lila is the manager of a book store that is located in a building that was bought by developer Grayson. All the legal notifications regarding the necessity to relocate the store were sent to her parents since their names are the listed as the owners. Throughout the book, there was a lot of misdirected anger at Grayson from Lila who she decided was foreclosing on her parents’ (mostly her father) legacy. If anything, it was her mother’s fault. But I won’t even get into that.

First of all, my impression of this books has a lot to do with my stance on Christian or religious contemporary fiction. It is my personal opinion that when romance novel authors try to make them “Christian” they should at least say somewhere in the blurb about the book. Reading a romance novel and having “God” references liberally throughout makes it a Christian contemporary. Not knowing that from the beginning because makes me feel as if I’m being preached to. I am not saying that I have anything against books with a religious slant, but at least I can set my expectations based on that.

Lila is trying to be a “good” Christian and has made a vow that she would not indulge in premarital coitus. But that was before there were lighting sparks between her and Grayson. So now she’s relapsing but she’s so conflicted the whole time. It got kind of annoying to me because the story had a Debbie-downer feel every time Lila focused on her guilt. And that took some of the fun out the reading the back and forth banter between them. I knew that they would end up in bed and the next day she was going to be regretting her lack of self-control.

To top it off, Lila has the thought that maybe she shouldn’t get with Grayson because he’s not a Christian. Then he agrees to go to church with her just because if that is what she likes, he will go along with it. I really don’t like that. I don’t think anyone should convert or change religion or become more religious because of girl or boyfriend. The person is just going through the motions and it may or may not last. I don’t know if in the long run Grayson would become a Christian, but there needs to be more of a basis than “I’m doing it for my girlfriend”.

Another point with which I take issue is Lila’s hot and cold attitude with Grayson. She seemed almost to the point of bi-polar to me. One minute she is flirting, ready to jump his bones, and the next minute she is telling him to get out of her house and she is not speaking to him. He had a lot of patience to deal with her. I would have told her “Crazy girl, get your store off my premises before I have forcibly vacated and get out of my life. Period.”

In closing, in The Book Of Love (Baby Its Cold Out) I liked the male character Grayson but the female Lila was super annoying. Some readers might find it humorous.
And to the author, let me know what to expect. If you are going to use the character’s religious relationship as part of the storyline, give readers a heads up and note Christian contemporary genre.


Already Home is more of a lust story

Already Home (Sons of Chance) is a very short story about Hutch and Trina. They had a crush on each other for years but did not act on it. They are two very busy people who seem to want to make the relationship work, but in the end I do not know if they would really make it. I think my hesitant attitude is because there is not much character development in this story. I am okay with short love stories, but there has to be something substantial there in lieu of the chapters of history and build up. That was something this story did not have. There is definitely potential, but it was not as strong as I think it could have been. Since this a Harlequin Blaze story, there is a little heat but it is not as steamy as some other books that I have read.

The ending did not give me the “happy ever after” feeling. I felt it was a hookup between friends who found each other mutually attractive. And that cause the story to lose some of its romance for me.

Since Already Home (Sons of Chance) was free at the time I purchased it, I cannot complain too much. Plus it was mildly entertaining. It is worth a couple of dollars, you want to buy it. Just realize that this story is realistic with a dose of cautious optimism.

Compromise and change equals love story?

A Compromising Affair (Arabesque) – Gwynne Forester

Scott Galloway is an ambassador who has finished one assignment and wants to find a wife before taking his next assignment. Denise Miller is a philanthropist working for an organization that helps children of immigrants (important later). Since Scott decides that he wants a wife, he begins to direct his attention to Denise (I still do not know how I feel about the man being on the prowl- seems like he is getting married for the wrong reason). They have a mutual attraction, but Denise has a lot of hang ups that prevent her from committing to a serious relationship.

Scott’s interim assignment was heading the immigration division which caused additional problems with their relationship. The organization, that Denise works with, made some statements that differed with the government’s official policy. Someone made the comment that Denise should publically support Scott. I did not agree with that.

Denise should not be forced to change her opinions in order to conform with her boyfriend. To me that was saying that two political figures could not have a successful personal relationship if they support different policies.

Her friends keep telling her to get it together because Scott is everything she wants. Scott wants her to trust him so that their relationship can progress. Knowing what Denise was dealing with emotionally, I did not like the fact that Scott was so pushy. I understand he was on the fast track to get a wife that fit into his career timeline, but I do not think that was fair to Denise.

As the book progressed, so did my frown lines. There is pressure from all directions, but is the relationship that what she really wants? Do they have what it takes as a couple to have a lasting happy marriage?

Maybe I am overreacting but the moral of this story to me seemed to be this: A woman has a job until she meets the man she is going to marry. Then she compromises and changes to do what he wants.

Since I am used to a different type of romance novel where the main characters revel in their differences while giving into to their love for each other, I admit that this may be an overreaction. Check out A Compromising Affair (Arabesque) and let me know what you think.

Thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat

All For One – Ryne Douglas Pearson

This is a thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire book.

The story begins in the Prologue with Joey Travers, Elena Markworth, Bryce Hool, Micheal Prentiss, Paula Jean Allenton, and Jeff Bernstein taking a bat to Guy Edmond. It seems that this is a particularly gruesome display of violence. And the premise of the book is that these children create a pact to stick to their story so that none of them will be arrested for Guy’s death.

In the course of the story, we understand why each one would have reason to kill Guy if they did. He was evil and spiteful. Calling him a bully does not fully describe the extent to which he went to terrorize the other children in the school and neighborhood where he lived. He destroyed people’s property, played cruel practical jokes, humiliated, and demoralized others. After his death, he was gone, but the emotional and physical scars haunted those who had suffered by his hand.

Yet it is a police detective’s job to find a killer. No one should be killed because of vigilante justice.

We know it is not right, but it is difficult to want to find the killer of a horrible person whose main delight was in the intimidation of others.

During the reading of the book, I had so many questions.

  • Did the children kill him?
  • If so, who will be the one to break and tell the police?
  • What will happen to them if they are guilty?
  • If they are not guilty, who really did it?

The author creates a story that engages the reader in such a way, that there is angst and anxiety for the children. These are children that are having to deal with repressed memories of torment and oppression by a devious individual. I sympathized with his victims. I could understand why some of them were celebrating his death and treating the murder suspects with, what some would call, misplaced gratitude.

But does that make their actions justified?

My mind said no, but my heart said maybe. In the end, in All For One Pearson answered all of my questions and provided a somewhat satisfying explanation to all events.

Another hot Westmoreland going after what he wants and The Chase is ON!

The Chase Is On (Silhouette Desire)   by Brenda Jackson

Chase Westmoreland owns a soul food restaurant and Jessica opens a bakery next door. And since a romance novel is nothing without a little drama, Jessica is the granddaughter of the assumed nemesis of Chase’s grandfather. She is trying to find out what happened to cause the rift between the two men.
Chase’s grandfather told him never to trust any member of Jessica’s family. So it gets complicated. Jessica knows who Chase is hoping she can find out what really happened before Chase finds out whose family she is part of. Jessica’s reasons for leaving that information out of the introductions has a lot to do with the fact that she was hoping to prove and present Chase with the proof that will substantiate her grandfather’s innocence. But she knows that the longer she waits, the harder it will be when the truth comes out.
While Chase turned on the charm as soon as he realized he has a cutie for his business neighbor, Jessica began a losing battle trying not to reciprocate. Once she gives in hesitantly, the immediate attraction seems to be smooth sailing until Chase finds out that she has withheld some pertinent information pertaining to her ancestry. With both of them having relationship issues because of previous experiences (e.g. her father was class A jerk), it is interesting to see how they end up together at all.

The Chase Is On (Silhouette Desire) is entertaining, funny, and a little nail-biting at the same time. As the reader, I had information that Chase did not and as I got to know his personality, I wondered how he was going to react when he found out. This is another must read from Brenda Jackson.