I’m helping lead the Reading challenge, so I can’t officially win …. but I want to play along! How about you? Check out the details HERE, and fill out the form HERE to collect points for perks and prizes at the convention. This is the order I’ll be trying to follow (HERE), though feel free to shake things up to suit your own schedule. And if you want ideas to expand your selections without breaking the bank, check out the list of resources HERE.
Are you loving these authors! You can register for the convention HERE.
Anna Argent / Shannon K Butcher – Whispering Lake 01 – The Longest Fall – Really liked this contemporary romance, with it’s long-time-crush and loss-of-love themes. Daisy was a strong woman throughout. Mark felt like a good man wounded by grief. The author set up a nice push and pull balance that allowed these two long-time friends to help each other through the loss of her friend and his fiance. The romance complemented the story, it didn’t overshadow it. Their pain didn’t depress the story, it enriched it. And the end was handled beautifully. Everything isn’t automatically better, but you know it will be.
A C Arthur
Eric R Asher
Macy Blake / Poppy Dennison – The Chosen On 0.5 – Sweet Nothings – A nice introduction to set up the series. It’s very kid-centric and the couple is great with them. The romance is pretty drama-free, the couple having had a brief history but now being the right time and place, they fall in step almost from the beginning. But there is obviously a lot left to learn. I look forward to checking out the rest of the series.
Susan Boles – Lily Lambert 01 – Death Of A Wolfman – The blurb fits this story perfectly, and I enjoyed so many of the things that makes it a cozy mystery … small town life gossiping about small town secrets. I feel there was a lot of running around on the part of our lead character, Lily, and that her cohorts are going to need some convincing to get them completely on board with her sleuthing, which is why I’m glad the author opted to not designate an obvious love interest for the first installment. As if was, Lily seemed to be battling the ‘Southern Lady minding the Men Folk’ stereotype, and I for one, am pulling for her.
K C Burn
Ashlyn Chase – Laura’s Upcycled Life – Laura and Trace make a cute couple. The romance moves fast, partly because of the potential danger to Laura and partly because Trace is a highly impulsive character. I enjoyed the bit of intrigue surrounding the plot, and would have liked more detail on that front. But, considering the main focus was on the romance, I think many readers will appreciate this quirky novella.
Charlie Cochet – Compromised 0.5 – Center Of Gravity – I really enjoyed the opposites attract set up to this short story. There was banter. There was some attraction. And there was a grand romantic gesture. The anthology format ensured everything stayed fairly light, but it’s easy to see the author has plans moving forward. Looking forward to the rest of the series.
Cynthia D’Alba – Dallas Debutantes 02 – Christmas In His Arms – I love books about rekindling a past love and this one was really fun. They were barely older than kids when insecurities clouded their feelings the first time around. I liked that there was still some tension between them during their unexpected reunion, because it meant that there was still hope for them. And I liked that the author didn’t drag it out too much. They were allowed to reconnect and shift through the memories with more mature eyes.
Jeaniene Frost – Broken Destiny 01 – The Beautiful Ashes – Highly enjoyable! Ordinary human finds out they aren’t as ordinary as they thought is a favorite trope for me, and the first installment of the series did not disappoint. The angel/demon and all the lore that goes with was good. I’m excited to see where it’s all going to go. I’m not absolutely convinced of the romance aspect yet, mainly because of some conflicting things that happened between them, and I think a lot of their relationship is based on their situation. But that’s okay. It’s a process.
Maggie Mae Gallagher / Anya Summers
Elicia Hyder – Soul Summoner 0.5 – The Detective: A Nathan McNamara Story – I like Nate McNamara’s style. There is a light romantic thread, but this prequel mainly focuses on 2 ongoing cases …. a possible serial killer and some high dollar home invasions. I like how the author sorted everything out, and how Nate’s character felt so unpredictable. He’s a solid lawman, but change is in the air. I’m looking forward to seeing how he fits into the supernatural series to come.
Kiernan Kelly / Dakota Chase
Kathy Lyons / Jade Lee
Gail Z Martin / Morgan Brice
Z A Maxfield
Hildie McQueen / H M McQueen
J D Monroe / Jessica Hawke
Sarah Nicolas / Aria Kane – The Company 01 – Once Upon A Darkness – I loved this book! I loved the post-apocalyptic world. I loved the initial set-up of the story/series. I loved the characters and their dynamics. I even liked how an unexpected couple at the (spoiler 🙂 ) added an unexpected complication to an already dire situation. The pace was fast, and because it’s a short story/novella, it was over was too soon. My only complaint is that there is not already a sequel.
Shaila Patel – Joining Of the Souls 01 – Soulmated – I really enjoyed the empath concept and the inclusion of realistic sounding Irish and Indian dialogue. A fan of both cultures, I could easily hear the conversations in my mind. I knew the book was ultimately a romance, but I do wish more of the paranormal elements were included. I felt for Lucky, trying to figure out what was going on only be told it was all a secret that she can’t know yet. It seems the story arc was designed for the bulk of the paranormal danger to unfold in book 2. I’m definitely looking forward to that.
Carrie Ann Ryan
Sloane Savage / H D Smith – The Devil’s Assistant 01 – Dark Hope – Claire was a bad-ass. She was such a cool, big character that I had no trouble believing that she held her own against the Devil and his family tree. The overall story was exciting and unique. The action started early and kept on going. And the world Ms. Smith created? Brilliant. It’s vivid and well-populated, with culture and hierarchy and rules. There was a bit of a “Rat-Pack, mob era” Vegas feel, which I appreciated, mixed with some ethereal moments. I’ll definitely be continuing the series.
S E Smith – Cosmos’ Gateway 01 – Tink’s Neverland – The concept was great, and Tink was a fun main character. However, the romance was too insta-love for my taste, even though the author did make attempts to spread it out. I wanted more of the space and sci-fi storyline. I wonder if this is an undocumented spin-off of another series, because it felt episodic and assumed the reader knew stuff about the world that I didn’t know. And the primitive behavior by a supposed “advanced race” was off putting. Considering the author’s popularity with people I know, I am willing to concede that this may not have been the book for me, but another one will be.