Thursday, August 20, 2015

A Message from the Romance Witch: Time for a short break

Hello Romance Fans,

I just wanted to fill you in on why I haven’t been doing much reviewing lately.  Life has gotten very hectic and work is demanding much more of my time.  I will be taking a short hiatus from the blog, though I will still be reading and review will come quickly once I return in October-ish.  I hope you all hang in there with me and keep reading too.  The fall is coming and the leaves will be changing soon, making curling up in the warmth with a sexy read even more enticing.  Hope you all had a great summer full of reading and falling in love.  See you all very soon. 


Blessed Be,


Michelle the Romance Witch

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

ARC Review: Hot and Bothered

Hot and Bothered (Hostile Operations Team #8)

by Lynn Raye Harris

Blurb:

He can never have her. Having her means the end of his career in the Hostile Operations Team. But when he learns she’s carrying his child, he’ll have to make a choice…
Ryan “Flash” Gordon has been drawn to Emily Royal bin Yusuf since the first moment he met her. But she’s a terrorist’s widow, which means she’s completely off-limits. A HOT special operator can never be with a woman whose name is on government watch lists the world over.
But when Emily begs him for just one night, he can’t refuse. The next morning, she’s gone. Not just from his bed, but from his life.
Emily can never clear her name—or can she? When a rogue CIA operative offers her a chance to put her past behind her and do something for her country, she leaps at the opportunity—even though it means leaving behind the man she’s fallen in love with. But not before she lets herself have one night with him.
One night with stunning consequences…
Themes:  contemporary, military ops
Rating: 4 stars
Heat Rating: 
Review:
 This story is one that has been much anticipated for me, as well as most fans of the HOT teams.  Flash and Emily have been circling one another since the moment that she turn to him in her trauma and found a heart to match hers.  If you haven’ read the previous stories in the HOT series you might feel like you are missing a lot of the backstory for Flash and Emily’s love story, but there are enough details and semi-flashbacks that you will get the info you need to feel like you were there with them as they met and fell in love.  This story is packed with trauma, emotion, and action, though there were a few clich├ęs, the old standards are great for a reason.  I have been a fan of this series ever since I stumbled across it on a review page and just had to get my own copy.  If you are a fan of romantic suspense authors such as Pamela Clare, Katie Reus, and Marie Force you will love this series that follows the lives of some very special operators and the women that capture their hearts. 
Flash and Emily’s story picks up right away with Emily’s determination to find a way to get herself back on track after the terrifying experience of her marriage to a known terrorist.  She has fallen in love with Ryan and is unwilling to give into their passion because the taint of her past would surely leave his career in ruins, but when she sees a way out she jumps at the chance to clear her name.  She has chosen her course, but leaving without having Ryan, just once, in her arms and bed is unthinkable.  Ryan has resisted their attraction from the beginning, terrified of the consequences to them both if they give in, but when she comes to him offering him all the passion they have been denying he is unable to resist her.  The next morning she is gone from his life and he learns she has done the unthinkable by placing herself on the front lines of a war that he tried so hard to save her from.  When they come face to face once again they must face the consequences of their night of passion, physical and emotional, and decide if they are willing to do whatever it takes to be together in this crazy world they live in.
Emily is the kind of character that can break your heart one moment and the next leave you wondering how she ever allowed herself to be so beaten when she’s obviously made of steel.  She has made many mistakes in her past, but she is unwavering in her desire to change her life and set past wrongs right.  She has relied on others all her life, giving into the desires of those around her so she didn’t have to make the tough choices, but thankfully she has finally found her backbone and refuses to let anyone else run her life any longer.  Seeing her kicking butt and taking names, standing toe-to-toe with Flash, as well as Ian Black, shows that she is growing up and the time has come for her to take her life into her own hands.  Seeing her love for Ryan, her desire to ignore their love to keep his life and career safe, shows that even though she still has a long way to go to make up for her past, she is a good person and one that will sacrifice for those she loves.  A perfectly flawed heroine she matches well with Flash’ hardcore goodness and sweet inner core, even if he is wrapped in a seriously badass package. 
Flash similarly always seems to know just what Emily needs, even if he fights against their relationship becoming anything beyond friendship for entirely too long.  From the first second he set eyes on Emily he has fell the pull to her, even though he tried to deny it, tried to just be there for her as a friend and protector, so when she comes to him and basically demands they make love, he fights initially.  Giving in to her will change their relationship forever, and though he knows this, Flash just cannot fight his love for her in the face of her need.  Furious when she runs out on him the very next morning, Flash is determined to write her off as a meaningless affair, but his heart just can’t do it.  He is crazed in his need to find and protect her, especially when he learns the truth of where she has gone and why, making him into an unrecognizably angry and dangerous man.  When his next assignment places him directly in her path, he forces her to explain herself and when the full consequences of their night together are discovered, there is no way he can walk away from the mother of his child, leaving her to certain death, or worse.  Flash was the kind of man I love to read about, a true hero with his issues, but an obvious honor that make him the perfectly flawed red-blooded male that will leave a woman burning for him, loving him to distraction, and trusting him with her very life. 
Overall the HOT series just keeps getting better and better, and having the inside track of having the next story, HOT SEAL, which has already been release in an anthology, I can anticipate it will only get more interesting with an infusion of new blood to the team.  Flash and Emily’s story is one that nicely wraps up a story ARC surrounding the original team, with their hearts being given to the women that completes each of them.  Ryan is the kind of character that will leave you salivating for more, but still fill you with a feeling of having read about a truly great man.  His compassion might be a bit on the rougher side, but his heart is always in the right place and his honor keeps him in line, even if his stubbornness can sometimes be frustrating.  Emily has grown up quickly in the past 5 years of her life, but when she meets Flash she actually grows into the woman she was always meant to be.  There is no denying these two have been circling each other for far too long, but when they finally share their love and come to terms with their need for one another, and that needing each other isn’t a bad thing, they both become truly fabulous characters.  I cannot wait for the next full length novel in the series to come out and am wondering who might be getting their love story.  HOT just keeps getting hotter and more interesting and I can see this series keeping my interest long into the future.  Keep the heat coming Lynn and I’ll keep spreading the word. 
*eARC provided by publisher (via netgalley) for the purpose of an honest and unbiased review.  No compensation was provided. 


Sunday, August 16, 2015

ARC Review: The Prince and I

The Prince and I (The Oxenburg Princes #2)

by Karen Hawkins

Blurb:

 Gregori Romanovin, Oxenburg’s warrior prince, is escorting his grandmother to a house party deep in the Highlands when he and his entourage are robbed at sword point by a group of ruffians led by a man the locals have dubbed “The Scottish Robin Hood.” The battle-savvy prince instantly realizes there’s something different about this thief, and it’s not just the Scottish accent—it’s the fact that “he” is really a “she.”
Lady Murian, a young widow out for revenge against the powerful earl who killed her husband and stole his birthright, is now living in the woods with her family’s banished retainers. To stay alive, she and her band of men rob rich nobles coming to visit the evil earl. But when she ambushes the Prince of Oxenburg’s golden coach, she gets far more than she expected. For when the prince uncovers her true identity, she’s afraid that he might be the real thief…of her heart.



Themes: historical, Scotland!
Rating: 4.25 stars
Heat Rating:
Review:
 Another prince has found his princess, in probably the most unexpected of places, as he travels through Scotland with his eccentric grandmother.  I have been a fan of Karen’s since the first story I read by her, and this new series revolving around the Princes of the fictional country of Oxenburg keep me coming back for more and wondering what outrageous events these men will find themselves wrapped up in next.  If you have missed the previous stories about these brothers, you are greatly missing out IMHO, but you will be fine with this story because Karen truly writes them as standalones, with all the details you need to follow along.  Max and Murian’s story is full of drama, danger, laughter, and love and it was interesting to see her school him in what it really takes to be a hero for her.  The Robin Hood themed story has some funny twists though as Max finds a way to help Murian and the ways they deal with the attraction between them.  I am looking forward to seeing what happens in the coming stories and what types of mates the rest of the princes find for themselves. 
Max is beyond disgruntled at having to transport and protect his borderline crazy grandmother as she travels to the country home of a man that neither of them can really stand, especially when she won’t tell him why they have to make the journey.  When they are set-upon by a group of thieves, Max finds himself facing the dilemma of hungry villagers in need and giving up a few of their goods is within his capability.  However things go awry when he finds himself challenged by the leader of the troupe, someone that almost bests him, but that turns out to be a most unexpected vision.  Lady Murian has done her best by her people since the death of her husband, their Laird, and the subsequent ousting of her people from their homes.  Determined to give everything to her people she captures Max’s attention and he is willing to help her reach her goals, but the attraction between them is just to irresistible and soon they find themselves falling for one another, an impossible situation when neither is willing to compromise their futures.  Can they find a way to be together and still do what’s right by both of their people?
Max was the quintessential man of his time and station—arrogant and all-knowing—but his sweetness and willingness to embrace his people as equals is not to be neglected.  I really liked him, even if at times his overbearing nature was enough to drive Murian insane, he always has the best interests of others at heart.  While I could see that he had issues giving up control, he often listens closely to Murian and was able to embrace an equal partnership with her.  The love that develops between them is at turns intense with sensuality and light with laughter, but once they realize the love they share, they both try to find a way to come together for life.  Lady Murian is a woman totally out of time; following the paths of her male counterparts and willing to give her all for her people, she would have been an awesome warrior princess in the medieval past or a kick ass military woman in this age.  She was sweet when she was able to let down her guard with Max and show her softer side, but when she steps up to be in charge of her people and their needs, her inner strength shines brightly.  I think so far that Murian is my favorite new princess of Oxenburg and I cannot wait to see how she shakes up the royal family in coming novels. 
This story might have seemed like the classic retelling of the Robin Hood story, but though there are some similarities, the differences are enough to keep you interested and wondering what will happen next.  Max and Murian are a perfectly matched couple, butting heads and bruising egos, even while tenderly caring for each other’s hearts and souls as they fall in love.  Max is a strong and dedicated warrior, but at the same time he is a man of the people, working alongside his men on everyday tasks, while taking their opinions into account just as much as his own.  Lady Murian has had a challenging life, with a lot of loss and sadness, but she doesn’t let that keep her from doing what she thinks is best for her friends and people.  I really enjoyed seeing her battling and strategizing right alongside Max, and then coming home to take him into her arms as her lover.  There was plenty of wit, laughter, and surprise that you never know what will be said or done next.  I cannot wait to see whose story is next and find out what they will go through to find their Princess and turn her into their queen. Keep the magic coming Karen, and I will keep thinking of you as the queen of Scottish Romance. 
*eARC provided by publisher (via netgalley) for the purpose of an honest and unbiased review.  No compensation was provided. 


Wednesday, August 12, 2015

ARC Mini-Review: Hotter With a Pole (M/M)

Hotter With A Pole (Firehouse 69 #2)

by Delilah Devlin

Blurb:

When Noah buys a classic '68 Camaro from a fellow firefighter's widow, he hopes it will ease some of the grief crushing his heart. But the grinding noise under the car's hood sends him straight to a mechanic. Something about the burly, imposing Hoyt sparks Noah's interest, and it's not just Hoyt's ice-blue eyes and bad-boy biker looks. It's the mutual interest they have--Club LaForge.
After losing his partner to cancer a year ago, Hoyt never thought he'd feel the same kind of rush with another man. But his reaction to Noah throbs deep in his body like the rumble of his Harley.
LaForge seems like the perfect place to meet and work off some sorrow, to feel alive again. But the flood of desire quickly gets hot enough to melt their emotional barriers into unexpected connections.
Connections Hoyt isn't sure he's ready for...especially since history has a scary way of repeating itself.
Warning: Get your motor running for a Harley-riding hunk of muscle who doesn't give a damn about the rules of being a Dom, and a firefighter who can take the heat. Buy a case of your favorite coolant. You're gonna need it.
Themes: erotica, M/M
Rating: 3 stars
Heat Rating: 
Review:
 Well that was an interesting and sexy departure from my usual reading options.  I have read many different series and stories by Delilah and they are always hit or miss for me, but this story was a hit.  I enjoyed seeing these two macho guys coming together in a true relationship of give and take.  Granted there was a large focus on the bedroom fun, but there was enough exploration of their emotional traumas and issues that I felt like I really got a small glimpse into what will become a great relationship.  After all love is love in whatever the form and this story proves that if a person has  an open mind they might find they have been missing out on a soul deep connection their whole lives looking for their partner in the wrong places.  I liked getting to know Hoyt and Noah and seeing them interacting with other club members as well as Noah’s firefighter brothers.  I realized much too late that I should have read the previous books in this series and the original to really understand the nuances of the guys and their club, but overall it was a fun, sexy short read for a boring evening in the tub.  Might just have to catch up and keep up with this series. 
*eARC provided by publisher (via netgalley) for the purpose of an honest and unbiased review.  No compensation was provided. 


Monday, August 10, 2015

ARC Mini-Review: Laird Wolf

Laird Wolf (Takhini Shifters #2)

by Vivian Arend

Blurb:

Pulling off a rescue mission at a remote castle in Scotland should be an easy task for lone wolf Damon Black. He’ll flash some muscle, show a little Alpha power, and do whatever it takes to ease Addie MacShay’s fears. But the woman who throws herself into his arms and cries boyfriend is more intriguing than anticipated. The sexy she-wolf’s got more curves, more tantalizing scent, more of everything he desires.
Addie’s job cataloguing an estate at the Sterling-Wylde Manor is complicated by the ongoing discovery of new wills and the two creepy heirs who won’t leave her alone. But her fake boyfriend turns out to be a far greater threat—not only is he fun and flirtatious, he looks delicious in a kilt. She craves his touch, but with her empathic skills on overdrive, touch is the last thing she needs.
Damon’s fighting his unruly inner beast. Addie’s fighting their incredible sexual pull. They'll both have to lower their guard to make this more than a Highland fling.
Themes: wolves, paranormal, Scottland!
Rating: 4.5 stars
Heat Rating: 
Review:
 Traveling to Scotland we get another glimpse into the fascinating world of Vivian Arend’s shifters that spans across the globe now.  My love of this series began with the wolf shifters of her previous series, and this spin off series so far has been great.  I have enjoyed meeting the other kinds of shifters and the way they blend with the different packs and their allies.  This story revolves around the two best friends of the H/h in the previous story (Copper King) and I was wondering when and if they would get books, but never imagined they would share a love story.  Addie and Damon are both hilarious characters with sharp wits, full of sarcasm and sweetness as well.  Coming to Addie’s rescue at the request of her best friend, his best friend’s mate, Damon never imagined he’d find his wolf’s mate and the love of his life in a woman that has driven him crazy from the beginning of their friendship.  I cannot wait to learn more about these characters, but since the only characters we met in this one were unlikely to be the focus of their own story, I am curious who might be getting their own story next.
Damon never planned to fall in love when he reluctantly travels to Scotland to assist Addie with her problems at the home of her new employer.  When he and Addie come to an agreement about how to handle her concerns, it quickly becomes obvious that those issues are the least of their problem, the biggest of which is the attraction between them.  As they get closer to one another, the sensuality and sweetness that Damon shows Addie makes her think she might be able to share her inner truths with him and find a way to share a life.  When their wolves come out to play and their destiny with them, Addie and Damon are determined to be together, no matter what comes between them.  Damon was a great guy, willing to sacrifice for a friend and give everything for his love, but his darker and dangerous edges make him a well rounded but tortured hero.  Addie was sweet and quirky, dealing with the fallout of her parental lineage and the secret of her gifts.  The overall plot was interesting with some twists and unexpected turns, and the ending kicked butt.  Looking forward to whatever Arend’s imagination kicks out next. 
*eARC provided by publisher (via netgalley) for the purpose of an honest and unbiased review.  No compensation was provided. 


Saturday, August 8, 2015

Mini-Review: Smoke on the Water

Smoke on the Water (Sisters of the Craft #3)

by Lori Handeland

Blurb:

Abandoned beneath a black willow tree on the banks of a northern Wisconsin creek, Willow Black spent her entire childhood in foster care. Her entire life she's had terrifying visions, and it is these visions that eventually land her in a psychiatric facility. And so Willow takes her meds and believes she is getting better. Until she meets a fellow patient who doesn't think she is crazy at all. She thinks Willow is a witch.
Willow's psychiatrist, Dr. Sebastian Crane, works hard to resist his feeling that he and Willow are destined to be together while also working to convince her that strange occurrences aren't the result of witchcraft… until he is thrown into the middle of a storm of supernatural events that can't be explained any other way…
Themes: witches, demons, paranormal
Rating: 4 stars
Heat Rating: 
Review:
The intriguing new trilogy by Lori Handeland ends with a bang and some unexpected surprises.  I enjoyed this book, with only a few things driving me crazy, mainly the way the story overlapped so much in time with the two previous stories.  I guess I see in a way why it was done that way, but I always hate when stories are like that and there is no lead up or warning to it.  Really if you haven’t read the other three stories you will be missing the majority of what is happening until time catches up with the ends of the two previous novels.  That being said, since I have in fact read the previous novels, I was able to catch on quickly as to the fact the timelines overlapped and follow along pretty well with the overall plot line.  Being the big finale there were a lot of battles in this one as well as the reunion of the long lost sisters and the integration of their men into the family and battle plans.  There were quite a few laughs since Willow has such a dry wit and her humor is right up my alley.  Seeing her come in to her power and begin to understand the true ramifications of all her abilities was pretty awesome, but the favorite parts for me involved times when she was talking in circles around Sebastian and turning him into the most adorably confused smart guy I’ve ever seen.  The relationship between Willow and Sebastian was obviously set with many pitfalls and obstacles for them to overcome, not the least of which is their surroundings, but they both show such caring and concern that the love that develops is a little more believable.  The reunion between the sisters was sweet and charming, while the battles between the Sisters’ Team and the demon that has haunted them through time were well written and suspenseful.  I can honestly say I didn’t enjoy the trilogy as much as the previous series I’ve read by Lori, but each book was well written with plenty of danger, drama, romance, and love, so all in all not a bad day’s read.  My biggest peeve of course was the fact the story was written partially in first person and partially in third, which personally made me crazy and was a departure from most Handeland works I’ve read in the past.  For fans of the Night Creature series, we continue to see some favorite characters carried over and I am hoping she will soon bring back that series as well as other projects down the line. Lori remains one of my authors to watch, but this series was not my favorite and didn’t quite meet my hopes for the set-up.
*eARC provided by publisher (via netgalley) for the purpose of an honest and unbiased review.  No compensation was provided. 


Wednesday, August 5, 2015

ARC Review: Wolf Trouble

Wolf Trouble (SWAT #2)

by Paige Tyler

Blurb:

There's never been a female on the Dallas SWAT team and Senior Corporal Xander Riggs prefers it that way. The elite pack of alpha male wolfshifters is no place for a woman. But Khaki Blake is no ordinary woman.
When Khaki walks through the door attractive as hell and smelling like heaven, Xander doesn't know what the heck to do. Worse, she's put under his command and Xander's protective instincts go on high alert. When things start heating up both on and off the clock, it's almost impossible to keep their heads in the game and their hands off each other...
Themes: shifters, werewolves, paranormal
Rating: 4.25 stars
Heat Rating: 
Review:
 The adventure of the Dallas SWAT team and werewolf pack continues with a new member that will really be shaking up the lives and futures of these guys, one in particular. I enjoyed the previous story in this series, as well as Paige's X-Ops series, and find new interesting tidbits in her world every time I venture into it.   If you missed the previous book in this series, I recommend going back to get the full story of the team and how everyone came to be a member of the pack, but this story is certainly well written enough to truly be a standalone.  Tyler always manages to pack a lot of heat, heart, and drama into short amount of pages that you get swept away in the story and don’t even realize it is ending until the big climax hits and the couple is happily settled.  I am looking forward to future stories in this series and hope all the other guys find their One soon. 
Khaki is fed up with the way her professional and person life has collided and the wreck that comes from it, so when Gage Dixon offers her a place on the SWAT team and in his pack, she jumps at the chance to start over fresh somewhere far away from the current disasters.  She never planned to fall head over heels in lust with her team leader the minute she sees—and smells—him on the very first day, but his instant dislike throws her for a loop.  Training her butt off to try to please Xander and find a place for herself on the team, Khaki is willing to swallow her pride and ask anyone for help, even Xander, but getting to know him could be even more disastrous as she finds herself even more drawn to him.  Xander can no longer hide the attraction and instant connection with Khaki and they give into their desires in a night of blistering passion destined to change their lives forever.  Soon it comes to the choice of being together or being members of the pack and team, but when danger threatens to end any chance at a future, the Pack with have to band together to keep all their members alive.
Khaki, as her name implies, was a truly unique character, unlike any werewolf, female cop, or heroine I have read about.  She has worked all her lie to find a place in the world, but one personal mistake puts her life on the line and makes it impossible for her to do her job anymore.   Jumping at the chance to move to Dallas and join the pack, she never imagined her mate was there waiting for her, much less that he would be her immediate supervisor.  Once burned and believing Xander hates her doesn’t make it any easier to resists the desire he brings out in her.  I enjoyed seeing her kick ass right alongside or even some times in front of the macho badass males in her squad.  She was the type of woman that has hit her limit and will no longer take shit from anyone.  Her willingness to sacrifice anything, even her own life, for the man she loves shows her honor and dedication, but the way she brings out his playful and loving side makes her a truly great character in my humble opinion.  Can’t wait to see more of her in future stories. 
Xander is the type of guy that really doesn’t know how to handle the connection that he feels immediately upon seeing and smelling this new and sexually simulating pack member.  Khaki invades his senses, mind, body and soul, but he fights every step of the way to keep them from being in an awkward position. I kind of hated the way he went about trying to keep space between them though, eroding Khaki’s confidence and making her believe he hated her.  Once he comes to terms with the fact that there is no denying their attraction, I began to love him even more.  He is more playful, totally sensual, and sweetly protective of his female and I can see him being so for the duration of their lives.  Seeing him struggling with the implications of their relationship and the potential fallout was a little rough, but thankfully all parties got just what they wanted and needed in the end. 
In the end I really liked this story, the characters were given just enough obstacles to overcome and the plot was well written enough that I was able to follow and sometimes even jump ahead of the characters.  Khaki was an endearingly sweet character that also had her badass side and a sensual side she only shared with Xander.  Seeing her come into her own fully, with the support of her mate, shows that sometimes the best thing a woman can do for herself if find the RIGHT man not just A man to back her up in all life’s dramas. Xander was the type of guy you never think will settle down, but when Khaki’s scent knocks him on his ass, there is no turning back.  While he resists the sexual pull, he is actually learning more about and beginning to fall deeper into love with Khaki.  Giving in to their desires brings them that ultimate fulfillment, completing their lives and giving them the missing half of their souls back.  I enjoyed both “villains” in this story and enjoyed how the two mini-plots overlapped, giving Khaki, Xander and the team ample opportunity to show off their skills.  Overall a really good read and one that will hopefully lead to many more down the line.  In the meantime, if you haven’t already I recommended catching up on this series as well as Paige’s X-Ops series.  Keep up the good work, Paige.  

*eARC provided by publisher (via netgalley) for the purpose of an honest and unbiased review.  No compensation was provided. 


Monday, August 3, 2015

ARC Mini- Review: Dare To Rock

Dare to Rock (Dare to Love #7)

by Carly Phillips

Blurb:

Avery Dare lives a quiet life in Miami as an online fashion/makeup video blogger. She has good friends, a close, large family and if her love life is lacking, she likes it that way. But when she receives an invitation to one of her ex's concerts along with an invitation to meet him back stage, she decides to take the risk… and comes face to face with the reality of his rock star lifestyle - the press, the crowds, and the half naked groupies.
At eighteen, Grey Kingston left everything he knew and loved behind to seek fame and fortune as a rock star, and he found it as the lead guitarist and singer for the band, Tangled Royal. Fans adore him, women throw themselves at him, and he can afford everything he couldn’t growing up. Yet at the height of his career, he’s ready to walk away and return home to a simpler life… and the woman he left behind, if he can convince her to give him another chance.
Except moving on isn’t as easy as Grey would like. When Avery is threatened by a stalker, it becomes evident Grey’s fans not only don’t want him to retire, they don’t want Avery in his life either. And Avery isn’t sure she wants the pressures that are part of Grey’s life… but she doesn’t want to lose him again, either. Can their recently renewed love survive the fallout?
Themes: contemporary, erotica

Rating: 4.75 starsHeat Rating: 


Review:

 The emotional trauma and drama of the Dare family continues with Avery and Grey’s story of reconnecting and finding a lasting love.  I wasn’t sure I’d like this story because it seemed they both had SOOO many obstacles to overcome to have chance at happiness together that I feared the story wouldn’t be able to be properly fleshed out with its relatively short length.  But once again Carly Phillips overcomes all odds and blows past my expectations.  Grey is the type of guy we all see on the surface and think he’s just the man for us—gorgeous, sensual, rich, loved and loving—but beneath those layers his heart is soft and sweet and he has found that the important things in life are those that affect him on that deeper level.  Avery was an intriguing mix of strength and vulnerability, standing up for what she wants at the most unexpected moments, then crumbling just as easily because of hurts long healed.  I loved getting to see more of the family and learn about the dynamics of some of the other relationships and have a sinking suspicion I know whose book will be next and I cannot wait.  If you haven’t grabbed the Dare to Love series yet, I recommend you run right out and give it a shot, because this family is the modern day, sensually portrayed, Kennedy family, and the members will hold your interest if for no other reason than their pasts are so outrageous.  Another hit, Carly!
*eARC provided by publisher (via netgalley) for the purpose of an honest and unbiased review.  No compensation was provided.