Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Review: Knowing Me Knowing You - Mandy Baggot

Recently single mother Kate is struggling. Clinging on to a career and bringing up her 2 year old daughter leads to nights alone drowning her sorrows in the cheapest white wine she can find. Forced to employ Joel, a male escort, to accompany her to a professionals' dinner, Kate somehow ends up in the middle of a relationship contest, competing for a £100,000 prize alongside someone she barely knows. With her boss, the Lady Dragon Miranda, desperate for Kate to flounder, her tarot card reading child-minder trying to match-make and her ex-husband making her life a misery, can Kate keep her life on an even keel? And more importantly can she put her trust in a serial dater who used to be an underwear model? 

My thoughts:
 Ok I have to tackle one issue first, the cover, it's bad. Actually it would have been a huge improvement if the chicken was gone. Anyway had to get that out of the way cos I know how we all fall in lust with covers or even do not give some books a chance cos of bad ones.

Back to the beginning of the actual review then. I was not sure at first but then I got further into the book and the story was good. Sure there were some things that were a bit too simple, and one tiny plot was just that, tiny and silly, I wanted something bigger. But overall the book was good, because the plot in there was cute. So I got past it.

In this book we have single-mum Kate, who hires an escort (*shakes head, that is gonna get you in trouble* ;), and Joel who is gorgeous and nice. Soon they are more or less thrown into a contest with chicken gates and love questions. Kate has got doubts about herself, she does try to be strong for her daughter, but when it comes to men, yes she is broken. Then we have sweet sweet sweet Joel, aww, what a sweetie and he falls for her. But it will not be easy, cos we have a ex in the background, her issues with him being so good-looking, and trouble at work. In comes the bitch, I honestly wanted to slap the woman at the office. Trust me, she was evil. So there you go, a couple who pretends to be in love, falls in love. And one crazy contest going on. About how well you know your partner

Conclusion:
A sweet and simple book about real life, pretend life and that age old emotion, love. HEA promised, and humour.

Rating:
Ok and sweet

Cover:
Ahem, yes I spoke about it before.

Info:
Genre: Contemporary romance
Pages: 398
Published: Feb 2011
Source: Author

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Review: Wolfsangel - M.D Lachlan

The Viking King Athun leads his men on a raid against an Anglo-Saxon village. Men and women are killed indiscriminately but Athun demands that no child be touched. He is acting on prophecy. A prophecy that tells him that the Saxons have stolen a child from the Gods. If Athun, in turn, takes the child and raises him as an heir, the child will lead his people to glory. But Athun discovers not one child, but twin baby boys. Ensuring that his faithful warriors, witness to what has happened, die during the raid Athun takes the children and their mother home, back to the witches who live on the troll wall. And he places his destiny in their hands.

And so begins a stunning multi-volume fantasy epic that will take a werewolf from his beginnings as the heir to a brutal viking king, down through the ages. It is a journey that will see him hunt for his lost love through centuries and lives, and see the endless battle between the wolf, Odin and Loki - the eternal trickster - spill over into countless bloody conflicts from our history, and over into our lives.

My thoughts:
I heard some buzz about this book and got intrigued, Vikings, magic and werewolves, that sure caught my attention. It isn't the easiest book to describe; it is a strange book, like a dream or a tale told long ago by the people living in the North. There Lachlan succeeded, I did feel the Norse Sagas over this story.

The book is dark and brutal. It tells the story of two boys, Vale who grows up not wanting to fight, and falling for a farmgirl. He is to become the Big Bad Wolf that can bring down a God. But in the beginning he is nice, and righteous. He does not want to look up to the Gods of War and instead he looks to Loki the trickster who laughs at the Gods. Even when he is plummeting into darkness I like him, and when I say dark, I mean pitch-black, crazy and lost. His brother is raised by Berserks and then by Wolfmen, he is also a Wolf. A bit crazy, also lost, and seems to be the violent one. This is a tale in which you do not know what will happen.

The magic in this one is true to its origin, runes, witches, and people nearing drowning for a glimpse of the future. It's magic that is real, but at the same time you just do not know, perhaps it is all  a coincidence?

The book itself is about growing up, finding yourself, doing the right thing, and in the end, being a mere plaything for gods, or should we say the destroyer of them. Because at the end of time Ragnarök will come, the last battle where Odin is killed by the Fenris wolf. And in this book we meet the Fenris wolf, Odin, and Loki who fathered the wolf. But this book does not end the way you think it will, because there is a second book, though at the same time there is an end. Why? Well you will just have to read to find out.

Conclusion:
It was a good book, and if you like adventure, vikings, magic, and fighting then this is the book for you. It is fantasy dipped in reality, a strange dream and a time when Gods were real and present. A time where a new religion started to emerge in the North. And it's the story of the werewolf. It is the Norse sagas told with modern language, and with a totally new spin to things.

Rating;
I actually have no idea how to rate this book. Because it was just so different. He sure has a way of words. So to the point, a good book

Cover:
cool

Info:
Series: Craw Trilogy 1
Genre: Historical Fantasy
Pages: 464
Publisher: Gollancz
Published: March 17th 2011
Source: For review

Friday, 25 March 2011

Flash Fiction Friday #Entry 32

Amy C over at Romance Book Wyrm and Dottie over at Tink's Place have come up with the idea for a Monday Morning Flash Fiction challenge. Each Monday a new picture prompt will be posted and if you choose to participate - you post your story on Friday - 350 words, give or take.

(pic has been removed: W woman dressed for battle)

After the Battle
by Blodeuedd
All was lost. Raven looked down at the massacre, the doom of her people. They had never stood a chance, but they had fought until death. Their blood spilling over the land which they loved. They did not hide or flee, they stood tall before the massive force that came to conquer. She and a few warriors survived and took to the hills. A runner had already been sent to tell the rest that they had lost. The women and children were long gone and now the last of the warriors had to hurry to ensure their safety. Only a fool stayed and died. The land was lost, but the people could still be saved.

She gave the battlefield one last look and turned around. Her cheeks wet with tears. In the sky birds  flew and gave omens about death.
“You all shall find glory in the Halls of The Dead,” she said and nodded to the men. “Hurry! That bastard shall not slay another of the Crow Clan.”

This was it. What more is there to tell? The Warrior princess ran to catch up with her people and they moved to safer locations. But in the end this was not her story. Another stood beneath that hill.


A Field of Death

An entire continent had fallen to the Dragon Lords. Behind them the land lay to waste. Before them mountains stood tall. All this was now theirs.

He took off his helmet and looked at the destruction.  What would they do now? The answer was easy, fight each other. This continent would be ruled by many and he, yes he would stay here next to the mountains. Out there was that woman he had saved some months ago. He could not forget her, and for the first time in years his strict training was swept away by feelings that might be love. He stood in a pool of blood and all he could think of was a woman. For once he was so stirred by emotions that he gave no further orders. The Crows fled and he did not even care.

“My Lord?”
The image of her disappeared and he put his helmet back on.
“Kill those that still stir.”
The soldier behind him bowed and set out to work.


In a moment of clarity, absolute clarity, he saw the error of death and destruction and fell to his knees and prayed to the Gods. Not his Gods of Chaos but to the Gods of the People of the Land. They heard his prayer and looked down at the world before them. Their people had gone to safer lands but the land itself still cried out. So they did what had to be done and the Dragon Lord fell down dead.

“That one is still moving,” a soldier pointed to a warrior near the edge of the mountain. Unaware of what had befallen his Lord. His friend went towards the man who slowly opened his eyes with the voices of the Gods singing in his head.
“Life can be glorious, “ he said and put a dagger in the Dragon’s throat. Then he smiled and ran. Towards the mountains, and the women he had once seen.


After the Battle
Night closed around the conqueror's way,
And lightnings show'd the distant hill,
Where those who lost that dreadful day
Stood few and faint, but fearless still.
The soldier's hope, the patriot's zeal,
For ever dimm'd, for ever crost --
Oh! who shall say what heroes feel,
When all but life and honour's lost?

The last sad hour of freedom's dream,
And valour's task, moved slowly by,
While mute they watch'd, till morning's beam
Should rise and give them light to die.
There's yet a world, where souls are free,
Where tyrants taint not nature's bliss; --
If death that world's bright opening be,
Oh! who would live a slave in this?

-Thomas Moore

----------------------------------------------

Sometimes a pic is just too great, so I had a hard time coming up with something. So I went and got a poem again. And what did I do, well some reason I went back to that Dragon Lord and Liselle. I always wanted them to meet again and now perhaps they will, and perhaps the Dragon Lords can be pushed back.

Poor red haired girl though, totally messed up her story. Oh well ;)

-------------------

More Flash Fiction
Michelle
Anachronist
Carol

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Review: Three days to Dead - Kelly Meding

When Evangeline Stone wakes up naked and bruised on a cold slab at the morgue—in a stranger’s body, with no memory of who she is and how she got there—her troubles are only just beginning. Before that night she and the two other members of her Triad were the city’s star bounty hunters, mercilessly cleansing the city of the murderous creatures living in the shadows, from vampires to shape-shifters to trolls. Then something terrible happened that not only cost all three of them their lives but also convinced the city’s other Hunters that Evy was a traitor—and she can’t even remember what it was.

Now she’s a fugitive, piecing together her memory, trying to deal some serious justice—and discovering that she has only three days to solve her own murder before the reincarnation spell wears off. Because in three days Evy will die again—but this time there’s no second chance.

My thoughts:
Perhaps I just had too many expectations about this one, I mean it was good, but it wasn't great. I am sure many will and have loved this book, but, there the but is again. How to say this, sure if the next book was given to me I would read it, but would I go out of my way to get it, no.

Oh see, now you all think I did not enjoy it. Cos I did. It was fast paced filled with questions and some sexual tension. Evy was as kick-ass as anyone. She had three days to live and she was going to get to the bottom of things, instead of living life to the fullest for those last three days. Her love-interest was Wyatt, her handler, all sweet and, oh that man just loved her from afar. Great guy. Then there was the myriad of other beings, elves, evil goblins, vampires, weres and all different things that lived and hunted in that city.

Great worldbuilding, cool story, some awesome ass-kicking, what weren't there to love. Still, why did I not love it as much as I could since UF is for me...perhaps it was the stress of wanting to finish a book this week. I am not used to stress-reading. I may have ruined the book for me.

Conclusion:
In the end I would still recommend this book to fans of UF. It just was so cool, and I do know that there are some UF books that I have thought to be ok and that later have become awesome. So perhaps this is one of those. 

I will leave it with that I do hope to read book 2 one day and find out.

Cover:
Kick-ass

Rating:
This one is hard, cos it was still good and a page-turner so...good

Reason for reading:
heard good things

Series: Dreg City 1
Genre: Urban fantasy
Pages: 405
Published: 2009
Publisher: Dell
Source: Bought

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Review: Breaking the Governess's Rules - Michelle Styles

How delightful to meet you again, Miss Louisa Sibson.’ Jonathon, Lord Chesterholm’s eyes bored holes into Louisa Sibson’s back.

The former fiancée he’s thought dead is very much alive…
Louisa has rebuilt her life, after being dishonourably dismissed from her post as governess for allowing Jonathon to seduce her. Now Louisa lives by a rulebook of morals and virtue – the devastating Lord Chesterholm will not ruin her again! But Jonathon will get to the bottom of Louisa’s disappearance – and he’ll enjoy breaking a few of her rules along the way…!

My thoughts:
A short light book. First we have Louisa, a former governess who now live by strict rules. She had her heart broken by the love of her life and she left the country. But little by little old Louisa comes back. Then we have Jonathon who loved Louisa and meant to marry her. In comes treachery, he was told she was dead. They meet again and he wants  her back. But trust is hard to earn back.

I did like Louisa, I understood her rules. Jonathon had grown too during the lost years, and I did enjoy how much he wanted to marry her even if she was a nobody. Then we have the wicked stepmother who told them both different lies. But it's nice to have some sort of bad guy.

Most of the book takes place at a houseparty. Jonathon wants to get to the bottom of thing and tries to approach her slowly. Louisa tries to stand her ground but passion can't be tamed. Then we have the other guest. A wannabe matchmaker, and the couple she wants to put together. There is also a plot about a recent robbery and about who let the thief in.

It was a cute little story about two people that had been terribly hurt by lies. They blame each other too, and they do have a reason for that. But true love will always conquer.

Conclusion:
A sweet novel, short too and you can read it fast.

Rating:
Nice

Cover: 
Ok

Reason for reading:
Won it

Info:
Genre: historical romance
Pages: 304
Published: 2011
Publisher: Mills and Boon
Source: Won at Goodreads first reads



Monday, 21 March 2011

Review: Raven's Shadow - Patricia Briggs + winners!

For many years, the city of Colossae was a haven of magical study. As generations of wizards pushed the limits of their abilities, an evil entity was unleashed that could only be contained by the sacrifice of their city. From the ashes of Colossae, the Travelers emerged - roaming the world to ensure that the Stalker would remain imprisoned forever...

Seraph is a Raven mage and among the last of the Travelers. Unwelcome among those who fear magic, the wizard clans have been decimated by the very people they've sworn to protect. But Seraph is spared a similar fate by the ex-soldier Tier - and together they build a life where she is no longer burdened by her people's responsibility. But now Tier is missing - or dead - and Seraph's reprieve from her duty is over. Using her magic to discover her husband's fate, Seraph realizes the Stalker's prison is weakening - and only she can fulfill her ancestors' oath to protect humanity from destruction... 

I had meant to wait with this review until I read book 2 so I could make it  a 2 in 1. That is why I wrote it shorter, and simple. But  I will just post it now, it has been sitting around for over a month ;)

My thoughts:
I like the fact that this fantasy has a mature heroine. Seraph is a traveler and she is rescued by a soldier named Tier. Travelers are not liked, they have magic, they are said to steal babies and all sorts of other stupid things. They are feared. Seraph and Tier gets married and 20 years later the real story starts.

A mature heroine with 3 kids, and a missing husband. Seraph was strong, and I liked her. Tier too, he was all nice. The kind you just want to hug.

I did get angry at all silly peasants and alike. They do not like the travelers, but the travelers are trying to protect these ignorant idiots. But I liked that. There are always some people at the bottom of the pecking order. And it makes you wonder what will happen when all travelers have been killed.

There was fantasy, magic and real life too. I liked that the book had an ending. So a good stand alone novel, but things are not solved so book 2, here I come.

Info:
Series: Raven Set, 1
Genre. Fantasy
Pages: 334
Published: 2010 (2004)
Source: My own shelf


WINNERS:
Only Mr Darcy Will do
Melissa (Books and things)

Kiss Me, Kill Me 
(I am late with this one, the winners already have their e-books ;)
Anachronist
Lisa

Lucky Leprachaun hop
Wild Desire Mishel PS (email staring with mish)
Wild Desire JHS

Kiss me, kill me  Danielle
A night of secrets Redd
Mind Readers   Lexie (email start shakes)
The ghost hunter Tyraa 

Heard from
Will email you lucky leprachauns today or tomorrow, or if you see this then email me first.

Edit: Lexie and Mishel, please email me back




Sunday, 20 March 2011

Review: I am The Chosen King - Helen Hollick

In this beautifully crafted tale, Harold Godwinesson, the last Saxon King of England, is a respected, quick-witted man both vulnerable and strong, honorable and loving-and yet, in the end, only human. After the political turmoil and battles leading up to 1066, we all know William the Conquerer takes England. But Helen Hollick will have readers at the edge of their seats, hoping that just this once, for Harold, the story will have a different ending.

My Thoughts:
Another well-written tale by Hollick. In this one we follow the last 30 years before 1066, and see the fall of the last English King.

Harold Godwinesson is the son of Earl Godwin of Wessex. In his youth he falls in love with a beautiful woman, Edyth and takes her as his handfast wife. Because he knows that in the future he must make a alliance and get a wife in a Christian ceremony. We follow his life as he becomes Earl of East Anglia, as his sister Edith marries Edward (the confessor), as he fights with his brother Swegn, as they all has to go into exile. As the Earls grumble about what a bad king Edward is, as they try to subdue the Welsh, more fighting within the family, worrying about who the next king will be, and at last, Hastings.

That might seem like a lot but the book does chronicle 30 years, and they were not easy years. The book sometimes follows different people, and one of these is a certain young Duke of Normandy. A bloodthirsty man who later wants England. I liked that there were different POVs now and again, because even if we mostly follow Harold, we also get to see what other things. William, Edward, Queen Edith, and a few more. A hint what they might have thought about events taking place.

The book does what it sets out to do. It tells about these last years of Anglo-Saxon rule and what a man Harold might have been. And he is a good man who truly loves his hand-fasted wife (concubine). The bad guy in this tale is Duke William. As for King Edward, well him I mostly feel sorry for because he just is so useless.

Conclusion:
A good historical novel, long yes, but it explained things nicely and she had her own spin on things. I liked this tale about how it all might have happened, and at last, this is fiction, we can never know the whole truth as Hollick says at the end. 

At the end I went nooo! Why? Because I did not want to see it happened, that which had to happen in 1066. We all know who won.

Rating:
Well-written

Reason for reading:
I like this time in history
Cover:
Not for me
Info:
Genre: Historical Fiction
Pages: 592
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Published: March 1st 2011
(first published 2001)
Source: For review

Saturday, 19 March 2011

Flash Fiction Friday entry 31

Amy C over at Romance Book Wyrm and Dottie over at Tink's Place
have come up with the idea for a Monday Morning Flash Fiction challenge. Each Monday a new picture prompt will be posted and if you choose to participate - you post your story on Friday - 350 words, give or take.

pic removed...
  
The Fighter 
by Blodeuedd


She was made for this. War made her blood sing and her she wished for nothing more. She knew how to fight, she was good and she knew that it was her path. Until…

A few years later

Lana took up the bucket of water and went back into the little cottage. She lived there alone and had so for a couple of years. Her days as a fighter in the King’s army had come to a halt when they had lost a battle that had cost the kingdom its independence. So she had left. She refused to fight for the conqueror. His name made her blood boil.

The sudden sound of a horse made her swing around. She stood still, tense and waiting, no one came to see her. Soon she saw the horse and its rider. She still did not move, not even when the man fell down. Instead she went back inside to start supper. It took some time but soon she heard knocking on the door. She had to open.

On her porch a man lay bleeding.” Help me,” he whispered and she took pity.

Funny how a life can change in a matter of minutes. Lana nursed the stranger back to life and as a woman still in her youthful prime she fell in love. She may have been a fighter but she had also longed for the simple things. Her handsome stranger never told her a lot about himself but she did not need that. She wanted only him.

The day he left she was heartbroken. He told her he would come back for her and kissed her goodbye. She waited for a week but the riders that came were not from him, instead they were from her old company and they begged their captain to return. The true king was moving in with a new army to take back the land that belonged to them. Lana knew that it was her duty so she took out her trusted sword and rode into battle.

The Siege of Dunmore Castle was long and bloody. When they finally broke through the gates they knew that victory was at hand. Soon they would kill the usurper and the country would be free. Lana moved like a dancer throughout the streets and the blood dripped from her clothes.

The king was ahead and she braved on. Soon he would fall by her sword. She killed his guards, and without even looking at him she put his sword through his chest.

“Lana.”
She looked up and her heart died.
“Gareth.” She looked down on the sword and then up at him. “No,” she whispered as he fell back.




--------------


Haha yes the end ;)

Friday, 18 March 2011

Guest review: Dead People - Edie Ramer

Genre: Paranormal romance
Pages: 193
Published: 2010
Review by Lis

When Cassie Taylor talks, ghosts listen. She wants to heal their souls so they can leave earth. Brooding songwriter Luke Rivers wants to give his recently found daughter a normal home, but he discovers his new house in small town Wisconsin is haunted by a ghost with an attitude. His ghost whisperer has an attitude too — even before someone tries to kill her. So why does he have the hots for her? And why does she lust after him? He wants conventional; she wants acceptance. No wonder she thinks men are hard and dead people are easy.


“No wonder you're stuck here on earth. God wouldn't let you into heaven.”

After reading that sentence on the first page of Dead People by Edie Ramer, I was sold. It wouldn’t have mattered if the rest of the book sucked, that sentence made my day. It showed me that like Cattitude this book also possessed a healthy quantity of 'tude!

It got only better after that. The story also made me a little jealous and with a definite longing to see ghosts as well, especially if they are all as hot as Joe. Yes, I have a thing for bad boys from the fifties *hides Elvis collection*

On the story! Dead People is about Cassie and Luke. Cassie is a sassy, opinionated ghost-councilor. She has the ability to see and interact with ghosts. Some of them are nicer than others. Luke is a songwriter and single father who recently found out his ex’s daughter is his as well and not his band mate’s. He recently moved his traumatized daughter to this great big mansion; a mansion which comes complete with the dead previous owner. That’s where Cassie and Luke meet and that’s where their story starts. They really don’t want to like each other, but there’s a definite attraction between the two.

Cassie becomes involved in the mystery as she finds out that the previous owner, a hell cat of a woman, was murdered. She also becomes involved with Luke’s daughter who has some troubles of her own.

The story is entertaining, eye-widening, edge-your-seat thrilling and belly-laugh funny. Not that I expected anything less from Edie Ramer!

The characters are well defined and have their flaws. At times I wanted to kick Luke’s ass and admire him (and said fine ass) at the same time. The same for Cassie, except for the ass admiring part. It can’t be easy having to defend yourself all the time and make a life for yourself at the same time. It was also a lot of fun to see Joe and how he keeps Cassie on her toes and be her soundboard at the same time.

Dead People is one fine romance read and I certainly wouldn’t leave it lying on the digital shelf for long!



Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Interview and contest: Kara Louise - Only Mr Darcy Will do

Today I have an interview with Kara Louise. The author of Only Mr Darcy will do. At the end of this interview there is a contest, so don't miss that.



Tell me something about yourself, so we get a better understanding about the woman behind the author.
I currently live in Kansas on 10 acres of land with my husband and a lot of animals. We have 6 cats, a dog, 2 goats, and 3 horses. But both my husband and I were born and raised in the Los Angeles area and moved here almost 20 years ago. We love it here and especially love living out in the country. It’s such a change from the big city of LA. We have a married son who lives in St. Louis.

Your newest book is called only Mr Darcy will do; can you tell me what it is about?
The premise of this book is that Mr. Bennet dies shortly after Elizabeth returns from Kent after refusing Mr. Darcy’s offer of marriage. Mr. and Mrs. Collins soon take their rightful ownership of Longbourn, displacing the Bennet ladies. Mrs. Bennet moves in with her sister and brother-in-law in Meryton, Jane moves in with the Gardiners in London as a governess for their children, and Elizabeth becomes a governess for the Willstone family. When Mrs. Willstone’s sister, Rosalyn, comes to visit, Elizabeth discovers the family has a long-standing acquaintance with Mr. Darcy, and Rosalyn has a strong fondness for him, wanting nothing more than to secure his love. When Mr. Darcy invites everyone to Pemberley, the Willstones all believe it is to further his acquaintance with Rosalyn. Elizabeth begins to see him as he truly is and wonders if she made a mistake in turning him down. She knows that she is so much more beneath him now and cannot expect him ever to renew his offer.

How come you started writing Austen variations?
I would probably have never written a variation if I had not read variations. I found that as I read some of the variations I was able to recapture some of that initial sense of awe I felt when I first read “Pride and Prejudice.” Certainly they don’t compare to Jane Austen’s novels, but it was nice to come home to familiar characters that I had come to love. After reading quite a few, I came up with a story of my own. When I began to write that story, I thought it would only be about 7 chapters. When I was finished, it was 18 chapters. I posted that story online, never imagining that I would go on to write several more and have them published.

I see that you have written a couple of other books. Could you tell me about those?
“Assumed Engagement” was that first book. The premise is that Mr. Darcy had written his sister and told her that he was going to ask Elizabeth Bennet to marry him. Of course Georgiana would assume he would be accepted. When he returns from Rosings, he is in a carriage accident and knocked unconscious. Georgiana writes Elizabeth, hoping that if she comes, it will draw him out of it. Elizabeth does not know Georgiana thinks they are engaged and would have no reason to go to Pemberley if not for the fact that Georgiana mentions that she has also sent for Mr. Bingley. Elizabeth sees this as a perfect opportunity to reunite Jane and Bingley if the two of them go. So off to Pemberley they go! Needless to say misunderstandings await them!

“Assumed Obligation” is the sequel and continues after Elizabeth and Darcy are married. Darcy is involved in building a deaf school in Derbyshire and Elizabeth finds herself involved in it. Kitty comes to live with them and she and Georgiana becomes good friends. The two have their share of difficulties and success in love.

“Master Under Good Regulation” is the story of “Pride and Prejudice” based on Mr. Darcy’s dog’s point of view. Reggie, an English Springer Spaniel, does everything he can to bring Darcy and Elizabeth together. The story also examines Mr. Darcy’s life in those months where we don’t read about him in Jane Austen’s novel.


“Drive and Determination” is a modern story in which the main character, Elyssa Barnett is an aspiring interior designer and she clashes with Will Denton, President of a coffee company. It is definitely not a parallel to “Pride and Prejudice” but is more inspired by it.

“Darcy’s Voyage” was my first self-published book to be published by Sourcebooks. In that book Elizabeth and Darcy meet in a completely different way. Their initial meeting is on a carriage ride where they each make an impression on the other, but they don’t get their names. The meet again two years on a ship bound for America, but do not immediately remember their first meeting. Because of what transpires on board, their lives are changed dramatically, but are separated when they arrive in America. When they both return to England, they meet again, and the storyline for “Pride and Prejudice” comes into play, altered, however, by the events that took place on the ship.


Would you like to try to write a variation of another Jane Austen book?
Definitely! I actually have one whole chapter done that is a back-story to a character in another one of her novels. (I won’t tell who or which one!) I have a good part of the story plotted out and a twist at the end. I just need the time to get to work on it!

Who is your favorite Austen hero?
This question gets asked a lot and I have to honestly answer that since I have written only about Darcy and Elizabeth, I guess it would be Darcy. But my second favorite novel is “Persuasion”, so I do have a fondness for Captain Wentworth, as well! People keep telling me I should write a “Persuasion” based story, and maybe someday I shall!

Which JA heroine is most like you?

I think I am a mixed bag of her heroines. I am probably more like Jane than Elizabeth, a little more like Elinor than Marianne, possibly a little like Anne Elliot (and hopefully not at all like either of her sisters), and possibly a little like Fanny Price. Can’t say I’m at all like Emma or Catherine Moreland, though.

Are you working on something new and exciting right now?
Something new, yes (see question above about writing another variation), we’ll have to wait and see if it’s exciting!

Any advice for aspiring writers?
My advice is to write what you love, but write it with excellence, as though you expect it to be published. In other words, read up on what makes a good story, find good writing tips, and apply them to your work.

Thank you!



GIVEAWAY
I have 1 copy of Only Mr Darcy will do to give away.

US/ and Canada only
Ends March 21st

To enter:
Please ask Kara a question, or tell me who your fav Jane Austen hero or heroine is.

Have fun :)

Winner notified

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Review: Only Mr Darcy Will do - Kara Louise

In this fresh and original retelling of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, Mrs. Bennet's greatest fear comes to pass-Longbourn is entailed to Mr. Collins. Elizabeth finds work as a governess in London, widening the social divide between her and Mr. Darcy and making it more difficult than ever for them to find their way to each other...

My thoughts:
What put this JA variation apart then? Let me tell you. As always we have Mr Darcy and Lizzy. But in this one her father passed away and they had to move out and now Lizzy is a governess. Her mum and siblings live in Meryton, but Jane lives in London at the Gardiner's. Enter Mr Darcy, and now Lizzy is even lower in society's eyes.

The drama in this book is all thanks to Rosalyn. Lizzy works for the Willstone family and Rosalyn is the sister of the Mrs Willstone. At first I liked Rosalyn, she confesses to having a crush on Mr Darcy and who could blame her. But then I read a bit more and I go all "Back down woman!" Mr Darcy belongs to Lizzy. Rosalyn assumes too much, wants too much and is the kind of woman who is all wrong for Darcy. It's silly, but yes it had me fearing that the HEA I wanted would go wrong somehow.

It was a variation that got better and better. I wanted them together as always, and I love watching them fall in love for real. It was a good what if story.

Conclusion:
How many can I read? The answer is a lot, because each book has some twist to the story. And the love that grows between Lizzy and Darcy always triumphs.

Ps. And Wickham is a scoundrel as always.

Rating:
Enjoyed it

Cover:
Ok

Reason for reading:
I love JA variations


Pages: 400
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Release date: March 1st 2011

Monday, 14 March 2011

Review: By Midnight - Mia James

April Dunne is not impressed. She's had to move from Edinburgh to Highgate, London, with her parents. She's left her friends - and her entire life - behind. She has to start at a new school and, worst of all, now she's stuck in a creepy old dump of a house which doesn't even have proper mobile phone reception. Ravenwood, her new school, is a prestigious academy for gifted (financially or academically) students - and the only place her parents could find her a place, in the middle of term, in the middle of London, on incredibly short notice. So she's stuck with the super-rich, and the super-smart, and trying to fit in is when the rest of the students seem to be more glamorous, smarter, or more talented than she is, is more than tough. It's intimidating and isolating, even when she finds a friend in the conspiracy-theorist Caro Jackson - and perhaps finds something more than friendship in the gorgeous, mysterious Gabriel Swift. But there's more going on at Ravenwood than meets the eye. Practical jokes on new students are normal, but when Gabriel saves her from  something in the Highgate Cemetery, and then she discovers that a murder took place, just yards away from where she had been standing, April has to wonder if something more sinister is going on and whether or not she's going to live through it .

My thoughts:
This book is a paranormal YA romance with mystery thrown in. April Dunne is the heroine who has move and go to a new school. Filled with rich kids and smart ones. Perhaps it could have been like a normal school if the in crowd had not paid so much attention to her, and murders happened in the neighbourhood.

April was smart kid, she questioned things, but of course she was also a girl and young. Which means crush time. There are some hotties around, but she is more interested in Gabriel who act all mysteriously. And of course I knew what he would turn out to be, even if it takes a real long time for the truth to come out. As for Gabriel, he was very sweet and protective.

This book has its doomed romance between April and Gabriel, but mostly it's about all the other things going on. Strange things are going on, her dad is also investigating the school and cemetery and he is on to something. I am just gonna go out and say it since you get it already in the prologue, vampires. But the truth to what on earth is going on takes its fair time, and then at the end, of course that is when it gets really thrilling. One part of the mystery I can't mention, but it's shocking.

There was one other thing that I sort of guessed, I was right, just not entirely about what it meant, and it was one good secret. And again, you just have to read to see.

Conclusion.
I think this one would be good for the YA crowd. It has got romance, mystery, vampires, secrets and more secrets. It will keep you guessing.

Rating:
Ok

Cover:
It does look nice

Reason for reading: 
Sounded good

Info:
Series: Ravenwood 1
Genre: Paranormal, YA, romance, mystery
Pages: 448
Publisher: Gollancz, Feb 10th 2011 (hardback 2010)

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Review: Bite Me if you Can - Lynsay Sands

One minute Leigh is walking home in the early hours of the morning, and the next a vampire is sinking his teeth into her neck. Turns out it was a rogue vampire marked for termination, but it does Leigh little good because the damage's already been done. She's become one of THEM.

Lucian Argeneau, hunter of rogue vampires, has been alive for over two thousand years, and there's very little to excite him anymore. Food has become tasteless, sex is ordinary. Then Leigh drops into his life. Suddenly he finds himself craving coffee...and imagining the sassy brunette stop the black satin sheets on his nice big bed. It's Lucian's job now to enlighten Leigh on the inner workings of being immortal...and tutoring her is igniting a fire in him that hasn't burned in centuries. But until they stop a renegde bloodsucker from destroying the human race, passion will have to wait.


My thoughts:
Another good and light Argeneau vampire novel. I truly like that about this series. And once again, this one can easily be read as a standalone novel. I have only read 3 out of 6, but it works. There is a new couple  in each, and the whole vampire thing is explained to the newbies.  Trust me on this.

In this one a woman, Leigh is out walking and gets attacked. Luckily for her Lucian comes to the rescue as he is hunting down her attacker. Since she is bitten he explains things to her *coughs*, ok he tries, he calls in help, and he is pretty bad at the whole thing. That is what I liked most about him, for someone among the oldest in the world (talking BC here), he is pretty bad at certain things. He is the grumpy grandpa that has given up on sex and food, since why bother at all. What can I say, I liked him, especially in one scene where he buys books about how to talk to woman. Leigh then, well she comes to term with the whole vampire/nano thing pretty fast. But she has been hurt by a man in the past so she is not that keen on falling in love, or lust with anyone.

These books are light, there is some humour, and there is some passion. I just sat down and read it fast, and I do like books like that. You can just relax, sit back and read a cute story about a couple falling in love. Though as always there is some danger in them too, here it's the guy that bit her and he will be back at the end.

What next, well I would really like to see Marguerite's book. That would be fun (nr 9 it seems ;)

Conclusion:
The whole vampire thing is still interesting, I do like the story of Atlantis and how "vampires" were created. The lightness and humour in the books make them fun reads. Cute and fast.

Rating:
They are enjoyable

Reason for reading:
Wanted to read more


Cover: 
I am not a fan of them, but they are nice, cos that guy is hot


Info
Series: Argeneau 6
Genre: Paranormal romance
Pages: 368
Publisher: Gollancz, February 10th 2011 (re-print)

Friday, 11 March 2011

Review: A Lot Like Love - Julie James

As the daughter of a billionaire and the owner of the city’s top wine store, Jordan Rhodes is invited to the most exclusive parties in Chicago. But there’s only one party the FBI wants to crash: the charity fundraiser of a famous restaurateur, who also happens to launder money for the mob. In exchange for her brother’s release from prison, Jordan is going to be there—with a date supplied by the Bureau. As the top undercover agent in Chicago, Nick McCall has one rule: never get personal. This “date” with Jordan Rhodes is merely an assignment—one they’re both determined to pull off even if they can’t be together for five minutes before the sarcasm and sparks begin to fly. But when Nick’s investigation is compromised, he and Jordan have no choice but to pretend they’re a couple, and what starts out as a simple assignment begins to feel a lot like something more..

My thoughts:
This was my first Julie James book and it will not be my last, because this was a good contemporary romance with a bit of suspense on the side.

The heroine here is Jordan, the daughter of a billionaire. But she is no spoiled princess, no her dad told her to work and make her own money and so she did. She can stand on her own feet, she is smart, and what was there not to like. Then there is Nick, a FBI agent who spends most of his time undercover and never makes any promises to women. Not to mention that these two are from two different social classes. But put together to play a couple and you know things will happen.

I do like a couple that can't stand each other at first. She is irritated by him, and he thinks she is a silly socialite.  But they get to know each other, they get attracted by each other, and then comes love. A nice romance and a couple you can root for.

I also liked the suspense part. It was not a lot but it was there. What would happen to her brother Kyle in jail? Would they catch the guy laundering money for the mob? And then at the end the tension was building up and something was about to happen...

Throughout the book I hoped that her brother Kyle would get a book, and I did get very happy at the end when it said that he would. That is one book I am looking forward too, and of course reading more Julie James.

Conclusion:
A good contemporary romance that kept me reading. I enjoyed the book, I liked the couple, and at the end I knew that I wanted to read more books by her.

Rating:
Kept me reading

Cover:
I love her dress, but he doesn't look too happy

Reason for reading:
I had heard good things about her books

Info:
Genre: Contemporary romance
Publisher: Berkley
Pages: 304
Published: March 1st 2011

Thursday, 10 March 2011

Review: The Bitter Seed of Magic - Suzanne McLeod

On the surface, Genny's life seems ripple-free right now. Finn, her sexy boss, has stopped pushing for a decision on their relationship. The seductive vampire Malik al-Khan has vanished back into the shadows. And the witches have declared her no longer a threat. But unless Genny can find a way to break the fertility curse afflicting London's fae, she knows this is just the lull before the magical storm. Then a faeling - a teenage girl - is fished out of the River Thames, dead and bound with magic, and Genny is called into investigate. As she digs through the clues, her search takes a sinister and dangerous turn, exposing age-old secrets that might be better left buried. Then another faeling disappears, and Genny finds herself in a race against time to save the faeling and stop the curse from claiming its next victim - herself.

My thoughts:
I can't believe this, the next book is out first in 2012! How on earth will I make it until then? I seriously need more Genny.

And yes there will be spoilers from previous books here.

Back to business then. Genny needs to crack a certain fertility curse so that she doesn't have to have a baby. The Fae are sending suitors to her, and I must say that I like the two in this book. Then there is the queen of the fairy lands who doesn't want her preggers. But Genny does not give up and she keeps on going and going. She is one tough Sidhe.

As usual there are lots of things going on. Trying to break the curse, finding who is killing Faelings, and as usual dealings with vampires. There is plenty of action, and I just had to keep on reading because I did not want to put the book down. I just had to know what would happen next.

The love life then, there is still Finn, but honestly, he is too nice, while I want her with Malik, who is totally wrong for her, but that man just oozes passion. And they have some serious tension going on between them. One more thing I looking forward to in the next book.

The book did manage to make me go OMG! What a moment, I did not see that coming. I wish I could tell you all, but just read the series and you will experience it.

A magical series that make me want more and more. The books keep on getting better.

Conclusion:
Just read the series :D It has so much to offer, some good old sexual tension, vampires with plans, all sorts of different Fae, London, and secrets, so many juicy secrets. Now I just have to wait one more year until the next book, I would give anything for at least a blurb.

Rating:
Awesome

Cover:
Meh

Reason for reading:
Like I said, awesome series.

Info:
Series: Spellcrackers 3
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Pages; 352
Publisher: Gollancz
Published:  2011

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Review: Taste Me - Tamara Hogan + tiny tradtion post

TASTE ME is the first book in a gritty, fast-paced, and sexy urban fantasy romance series featuring a world where incubi, sirens, valkyries, vampires, and werewolves live undetected alongside humankind. Someone has to keep the peace-and the secrets.

Siren rock star Scarlett Fontaine is finally home after an exhausting year on tour with her band. Incubus security guru Lukas Sebastiani has more urgent problems than protecting the stubborn diva, but now that they're forced into close proximity, they're fighting an attraction that leads them to the brink of disaster.

My thoughts:
This book was a mix of many things, paranormal romance mixed with suspense and urban fantasy. The love of music, and passion between the lead characters. 


Scarlett is a siren and rock star. She is tired and she is trying to stay away from Lukas with whom she had one glorious fling. She can't forget him. But he is put to protect her and of course things will heat up cos these two really want each other. Lukas is the protective guy who thinks he hurt her in the past, and she, well she just want him, but she also upset over things that have happened. And I believed the passion.

I did get confused once though. No one know about these aliens from another planet, and at one time I thought people knew. But I guess they just have hospitals of their own. And if they arrived 1000 years ago then why are there myths about sirens long before that? What I would have liked is why all these aliens came to the planet and from where. I got interested in that and would want a bit more than was given.

The suspense is about the killer on the loose, but we know who it is. Cos we get the name on page 1, so that took some of the suspense away. It was more a wait to see whom he would go after next.

Still the book does have an interesting premise with all the Valkyrie and sirens and such. There is a lot of talk about music and that does give it another feel to it. I did want to listen to some music while reading.

Conclusion:
An ok book with bit of genremix in it. I would read more if that meant getting more info on why they are on earth.

Rating:
OK

Cover:
Meh

Reason for reading:
Sounded interesting


Info:
Series: Underbelly Chronicles 1
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal romance
Pages: 384
Release date: March 1st 2011
Source: Publisher





Tradition Post
Fat Tuesday

This is my last tradition post. I started last Easter and nothing else will happen after today. It's the start of Lent. Do we celebrate that, eh, not really. It's just today that is left. In Swedish the name is Fastlags Tuesday, which I googled and it comes from the German word, Evening of Fasting. Oh and something is going on in Sunday too, but we didn't do anything special then so let's forget about it ;)

Anyway do we actually do anything? Yes, we eat these yummy things:


And students play in the snow, sledding and yup that it is, lol.

Monday, 7 March 2011

Review: Never Again - Michele Bardsley

Welcome to Nevermore, Texas, population 503, where witches and wizards live side by side with humans, and where witch Lucy Rackmore is in trouble. Ever since her former lover snuffed out her magical abilities, everyone in town is looking to settle a score with her family. And Lucy's only hope for survival may be her ex-brother-in-law-whom her sister betrayed and nearly killed.

Plot:
Lucy Rackmore needs help. She is running from her master and lover Bernard Franco and he has cursed her magic. Her family made a deal with a demon long ago and now they are all broke and shunned. So she runs to Gray Calhoun, her sister's ex-husband. But he is not happy to see her considering that her sister killed him and sacrificed him to a demon.

My thoughts:
What a light and easy read. I read it in no time at all, and I do like books like that. Sometimes you just need them.

Lucy was a woman who had made some bad choices. But she didn't know better and she is pretty damaged cos of that creep Bernard. But she was nice and tough. Then there is Gray who is messed up too because of the whole sacrifice thing. Still he slowly becomes himself again and he is one great guy. Now these two together, sure they fell in lust and love pretty fast, but I liked that. It's magic, and the magic wanted them together. Passion is promised in this one.

Then there is the danger. Someone is doing something for some reason in Nevermore. Who, oh I had no idea. That mystery was a good part of the plot since it does include Gray in it.

The world building was nice. Magic and normal people side by side. Houses that rule those with powers, demons that are wicked and all those nice things. Nevermore was a good town, pretty beaten down but I am sure it will get back on its feet after this. The world felt real, and not too much.
Best thing, more to come, wicked older sister has plans, and something is going to happen.

Conclusion:
Did I mention light, yes I did, if you want a passionate fast read with magic and some danger thrown in then this might be the book for you. An interesting book, and I would like to read more about Nevermore.

Reason for reading:
Sounded ok

Cover:
I do like that tattoo, and cape, but I'd like to see more of his head.

Rating:
Easy and fast paranormal romance.

Series: Wizards of Nevermore 1
Genre: paranormal romance
Pages: 290
Publisher: Signet
Release date: March 1st 2011
Source: Publisher


Sunday, 6 March 2011

Review: The Cold Kiss of Death - Suzanne McLeod

All Genny wants is to live the quiet life and to do her job at Spellcrackers.com but there's her tangled personal life to sort out first. She's being haunted by ghosts who want her help. Her witch neighbours want her evicted. Genny's sort-of-Ex - and now her new boss - can't decide whether he wants their relationship to be business or pleasure now he knows all her darkest secrets. And then there's the queue of vampires all wanting her to paint the town red. But when one of her human friends is murdered by sidhe magic, Genny is determined to find the killer. Her efforts to find the real murderer lead her to some of the most dangerous and seductive fae. Then when all the evidence points to Genny - she's the only sidhe fae in London - and she's named the main suspect; it's not long before she's on the run - and not just from the police - but from some of London's most powerful supernaturals.

My thoughts:
The series continues being good, and in this I finally have answers. Anyway Genny still has a lot of problems, witches, a cop who doesn't like her,  all the vampires in London that wants to suck her yummy fairy blood, Finn, her boss who wants to be more than friends and then something is going on with the Fae cos they want her now too. As you can see, problems! Not to mention being hunted for murder. What a juicy tale it is.

I like Genny, she is a bit messed up cos of her past where she was meant to be married to an evil vampire at 14 and then fled, but first after being infected by the vampire virus. Then there is the fact that she is actually half vampire/half sidhe. I do wonder when the vampire that was meant to have her will show up. Exciting stuff ahead.

Her love life is kind of non-existent. There is Finn, yes I like him horns and hairy legs and all. But then there is the vampire Malik, he is just so so, oh I am weak and I like him the best. But in this one Tavish, a kelpie got introduced, and I hope to see more of him too. What is going to happen is anyone's guess.

There is action and drama. Finding the real killer, staying out of everyone's way, evil witches, ghosts, her borrowed self Rosa, oh you never have a dull moment reading this book. It kept me guessing until the end. Who is really after her?

Conclusion:
Great urban fantasy that I do recommend. Great world building, lots of Fae, trolls and more. A bit of sexual tension, and questions to be answered. Nice London setting and when I finished I wanted book 3..which I will read later this week ;)

Reason for reading:
I needed more!

Cover:
Meh

Rating:
Refreshing UF


Series: Spellcrackers 2
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 352
Published: Gollancz 2010

Friday, 4 March 2011

Review: The Scarlet Kimono - Christina Courtenay

Abducted by a warlord in 17th-century Japan - what happens when fear turns to love? England, 1611, and young Hannah Marston envies her brother's adventurous life. But when she stows away on a merchant ship, her powers of endurance are stretched to their limit. Then they reach Japan and all her suffering seems worthwhile - until she is abducted by Taro Kumashiro's warriors. In the far north of the country, warlord Kumashiro is intrigued to learn more about the girl who he has been warned about by a seer. There's a clash of cultures and wills, but they're also fighting an instant attraction to each other. With her brother desperate to find her and the jealous Lady Reiko equally desperate to kill her, Hannah faces the greatest adventure of her life. And Kumashiro has to choose between love and compromising his honour.

My thoughts:
Hanna Marston was not as pretty as her older sister and therefore her family didn't care about her, and wanted her to marry some old guy with 5 kids. Something that Hannah did not want so what does she do, oh yes she hides on her brother's ship that is sailing for Japan. I did like that she had the guts to do that. But as always, come on, are men really that stupid that they do not see that she is a girl, she was like there for 2 years or something. This is a common trope in books so I am used to it, but still it just makes me think men are fools.

Anyway she hid and she even learnt Japanese from the cook. Smart girl! So ok the rest were fools, but she and the cook who was Japanese were smart, lol. Which brings us to Japan. This is where the story gets good, because it's a premise I really enjoy. She gets abducted by a handsome warlord because his seer has seen Hannah in his visions. Of course the rest finds foreigners ugly but Taro is smitten by Hannah and she is finds him attractive too. And yes I do like the whole abducting a bride thing. Because he is a perfect gentleman, he asks her to teach him English and he treats her with respect, and he wants her whatever anyone else says. A romance is blossoming.

To the rest of the cast then, there is the wicked Lady Reiko who wants Taro for herself and is prepared to do anything. There is Captain Rydon and her brother Jacob, but honestly they are so much in the background so who cares. This is Hannah's story and her struggle. But she never sees it as a struggle. She holds her head high, she has respect for all, and when Taro says she is beautiful she gains self-respect too.

The book has romance, drama (a book always need a bitchy woman), and culture clashes, I liked those of you can say it like that. The Japanese finds the foreigners ugly and weird because the English never bathe. It was interesting to see a romance set in this time.

Conclusion:
The story was the best part of this book. She is the first English woman to ever set foot in Japan, and then a handsome warlord takes fancy to her. I do like doomed love. And it was an easy and fast book to read. Nice mix between historical fiction and historical romance.

Reason for reading:
Again the story

Rating:
Interesting story

Cover:
I love the swirly things.

Pages: 352
Genre: Historical Fiction/romance
Publisher: Choc Lit, March 1st 2011

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Review: It happened One Bite - Lydia Dare

Blaire Lindsay's been warned that her ancestral home is haunted. But it will take more than tales of a ghost to frighten Blaire, a battle-born witch with supernatural strength and the ability to make sparks fly from her fingertips. Hearing spectral wails, she decides to search for their source, and is surprised to find a handsome young man chained to the dungeon wall. But when Blair frees James from his bonds, she quickly discovers she's unloosed far more than she could ever have imagined. Soon the castle is overrun with vampires whose perfect manners and compelling blood lust make for some very awkward moments, and Blair and James are joined in the fight of their lives to save everything they hold dear from the forces of evil.

My thoughts:
I liked the werewolf books by Lydia Dare and I was curious about the vampire series and reading more about the witches. I never thought it, but I ended up liking this book even more than previous books.

In this book is Blaire's turn to find love. She can fight like a man, and she is not a lady even though her brother wants it. For that I did like Blaire, she was herself, she was strong and she was not about to let a man tell her what to do. Then there is James, the hero of the book, a vampyre that has been imprisoned in a dungeon for 20 years, put their by Blaire's mum and her coven. Even though he does hold a grudge, he is a sweet vamp.

But honestly the person I was the most fascinated by is Matthew Halkett, a very old vampire and who will be in the next book. I can't wait for his story.

Back to the book. James is hungry and not just for blood since he wants Blaire for more. They do their little dance. Then two more vampires show up and they are not nice at all. They want death and blood. There is danger, passion and at the end we meet up with old friends. Sorcha, who still love to flirt, Elspeth and Benjamin, and Alex, I am starting to get a bit interested in him, he is turning into something nice.

The best part about this book is that I just wanted more. I kept turning page after page to find out what is going to happen. The book has no dull moments and there is a flow, and you just want more.

Conclusion:
Dare manages to create a new fun series. Old friends, and no you do not need to have read the werewolf books, passion, magic and vampires. A fast read that I enjoyed.

Reason for reading:
I read her werewolf series

Cover:
I do like the castle, but.....

Rating:
Page turner
Series: Regency Vampyre Trilogy 1
Genre: Historical paranormal romance
Pages: 416
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca March 1st 2011


PS. 
I am being interviewed/book blogger spotlight today over at My Love Affair with Books

 

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Review: Staying at Daisy's - Jill Mansell

Daisy MacLean runs the country house hotel owned by her flamboyant father, Hector. When she hears who's about to get married there, she isn't worried at all - her friend Tara absolutely promises there won't be any trouble between her and ex-boyfriend Dominic, whom she hasn't seen for years. But Dominic has other ideas. Meanwhile, Hector's getting up to all sorts with, well, that's the village's best kept secret. And then Barney turns up, with a little something belonging to the husband Daisy's been doing her best to forget. That's the thing about hotels, you never know who you're going to meet. Or whether they're going to stay.

My thoughts:
There is a lot going on in this book, not that it becomes messy, but just that more than one person will find love at the end of this sweet book.

First there is Daisy who runs the hotel her father owns. She used to be married to an ass and does not want anything to do with men like that anymore. She is smart, nice, but also wounded. Then there is Dev, the best man at the wedding being held there, he is all those things she does not want, but the attraction is there. Sure he is a bit of an idiot sometimes, but then you do stand up for your friends. I have to like that about him, and later on he is truly sweet.

Ok the main couple out of the way. Then there is Tara, the chambermaid who is unlucky in love, and whose ex is getting married at the hotel. I did want love for her, and I truly enjoyed her HEA. Her aunt who is doing something she should not be doing. Daisy's fun dad Hector, and last Barney, a new employee who falls in love with a girl with secrets. And these all find love, one way or another.

I would call this more of a drama chick-lit, there are no haha moments, instead real people try to find love, they mess up, they do stupid things, and they feel hurt. They believe lies and life goes on. It was a great cast of characters and they were all different, and I am glad how things turned out for everyone.

But there was one person I did not like, a certain mistress who believed all the lies the man told her. She just annoyed me, sure she was in love, but to believe lies like that, and even after the wife tells the truth. I kind of did not want a happy ending for her, but then cheaters are manipulating bastards so who can blame her. I will not say who it is, some things you have to find out for yourself. 

Conclusion:
The book was sweet, and very easy to read. It was long but the pages seemed to fly by. There is drama and romance, and the thing I like the most, reality. 

Reason for reading:
Sounded nice

Cover Talk:
Cute

Rating:
Sweet and Fun


Genre: Fiction, chick-lit
Pages: 512
Publisher: Sourcebooks March 1st 2011
(first published 2002)

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