Tuesday, June 25

Buddy Review: The Wanderer by Robyn Carr

So today is the release date of Ms Carr's newest novel, The Newcomer. Ames and I thought it'd be nice to post this review of The Wanderer, the first book in the series, as an incentive to those of you who hadn't planned to give it a try... Because really, Ms Carr has penned another winner series :)


The Wanderer by Robyn Carr
published by Harlequin Mira in March 2013
Nestled on the Oregon coast is a small town of rocky beaches and rugged charm. Locals love the land's unspoiled beauty. Developers see it as a potential gold mine. When newcomer Hank Cooper learns he's been left an old friend's entire beachfront property, he finds himself with a community's destiny in his hands.

Cooper has never been a man to settle in one place, and Thunder Point was supposed to be just another quick stop. But Cooper finds himself getting involved with the town. And with Sarah Dupre, a woman as complicated as she is beautiful.

With the whole town watching for his next move, Cooper has to choose between his old life and a place full of new possibilities. A place that just might be home.
Genre:  Contemporary Romance
Series:  Thunder Point, Book #2

Ames: Thanks Nath for mentioning how much you enjoyed The Wanderer. Otherwise I would have just stuck it in my pile and put off reading it. I’m glad I read it right away. 

Nath: No problem, Ames! I’m so happy you read it! But I think the trick was that you borrowed it from the library :)

So what did you think of The Wanderer, Ames? I have to admit that my big fear coming in this new series of Ms Carr would be the similarities to her Virgin River series. However, I think she pulled it off :)

Ames: Well I can’t say I had any thoughts like that because I haven’t read enough of the Virgin River books to compare. LOL But I feel bad because I keep forgetting how good of an author Robyn Carr is. So I was surprised by how much I enjoyed The Wanderer. I mean, I’ve really enjoyed every book of hers I’ve read...but it just slips my mind I guess. Whoops.

Nath: LOL, you’re so funny Ames. Well there’s definitively a reason why Ms Carr’s Virgin River series was so popular :) But let’s discuss The Wanderer.

I was pleasantly surprised at The Wanderer. Not only because it was different from the Virgin River settings, but just how the story unfolded. I really liked that Ms Carr showed us how Cooper was settling in in Thunder Point instead of jumping straight into the romance. Him deciding what to do with the inheritance he got and making friends with Landon and the Mac. That was nice to see.

Ames: I liked that too!! I like how The Wanderer unfolded before us from Cooper’s point of view and not Sarah’s. And the beginning was focused on Cooper getting established in Thunder Point almost against his better intentions.  He shows up in town, thinking he’d poke around a little bit into a friend’s mysterious death and then ends up inheriting his friend’s property and business. And Cooper was definitely a fun character to read about. I liked how he became friends with the different townsfolk before he even met the heroine.

And like I said in our emails, Sarah has just gone through a divorce (where the ex was a cheater) so it wouldn’t have been fun being in her headspace. Wise decision on Ms. Carr’s part there.

Nath: I think Ms Carr really captured well the state of mind Sarah was in. She’s been burned by her previous relationship. Not only was her ex a cheater, but she’s had to move away, uproot herself and Landon. She’s definitively not in a hurry to get back into the saddle. So I really liked how Ms Carr took it slowly. Even when Cooper and Sarah started going out together, there was no pressure. Then, their fling just grew into something more and I like that they are going to continue to explore their relationship once The Wanderer is over :)

Ames: I liked how Sarah and Cooper’s relationship evolved. Very mature. However, as much as I liked the two together, I really enjoyed Cooper’s developing friendships with Landon and Mac. It’s hard not to gush about the friendships in this book. The whole book, character-wise, was extremely well-rounded and I appreciated that. And it was a good way to showcase some humor. The way the guys talked to each other was funny. Here’s an example of an interaction between Cooper and Mac. Oh and Hamlet is a big Great Dane of Sarah’s that she likes to exercise on the beach.
"I have to go," Cooper said. "I'm going to meet Sarah at my place."
"I don't need to know that."
"Sometimes she's tired from her jog and needs to lie down awhile."
"Really, you can keep it to yourself, asshole."
"Hamlet likes to watch."
"You're a sick fucker, you know that?"

Nath: LOL, that part was so funny! I like the budding friendship between the guys and how they like to niggle each other. As a whole, I thought The Wanderer felt very real :) It’s about different people from different circumstances, interacting with each other.

I also enjoyed getting to know Landon. I have to say, Ms Carr definitively has a knack at writing interesting teenager characters.

Ames: I will take your word on that one, having only read a few of Ms. Carr’s books (and none featuring teens). But I really liked Landon’s character too. I like how Landon wasn’t just a cookie-cutter character off in the background. He had his own plot and love interest too!

That’s basically the reason why The Wanderer works. Each character is fully realized in their own way. And we get to meet them all through Cooper’s eyes and I don’t blame him for being torn on should he stay or go.

Nath: I would be torn too. What I liked though is that ultimately, Cooper did make the decision and he wasn’t wishy-washy about it. He didn’t leave to only come back or Sarah didn’t plead with him. I think their story is actually going to continue in the subsequent novels and I can’t wait to see it unfold :)

What did you think of Mac and Gina? They are the main characters of the next book, The Newcomer, and I think their story will be interesting :) Go Gina for realizing she cannot wait for him forever! It’s exactly the kick he needed :P

Ames: Oooh I liked their story! Friends to lovers and all that. I like how they had their single parent support system and Gina wanted Mac to get a move on already. Yup, I thought they were cute.

Nath: I think it was a good beginning for their story which I’m looking forward to :)

So your verdict for The Wanderer? I thought it was a solid book and beginning to Ms Carr’s new series. It didn’t wow me, but I did enjoy it a lot and therefore, it’s a B for me :)

Ames: I have to give The Wanderer a B+. I really enjoyed it and was so captivated by all the characters. And Cooper’s POV was a great way to get introduced to this small town. And the humour. Kudos to the humour. I have several favorite passages bookmarked that I like to re-read for a good laugh. :P

Tuesday, June 11

Buddy Review: Fallen Too Far by Abbi Glines

Wena and I chose Fallen Too Far by Abbi Glines. for our May review book.  This is coming a bit late, but here's our discussion.

Fallen Too Far by Abbi Glines
Self-published December 2012 
To want what you’re not supposed to have...

She is only nineteen.

She is his new stepfather’s daughter.

She is still naïve and innocent due to spending the last three years taking care of her sick mother.

But for twenty-four year old Rush Finlay, she is the only thing that has ever been off limits. His famous father’s guilt money, his mother’s desperation to win his love, and his charm are the three reasons he has never been told no.

Blaire Wynn left her small farmhouse in Alabama, after her mother passed away, to move in with her father and his new wife in their sprawling beach house along the Florida gulf coast. She isn’t prepared for the lifestyle change and she knows she’ll never fit into this world. Then there is her sexy stepbrother who her father leaves her with for the summer while he runs off to Paris with his wife. Rush is as spoiled as he is gorgeous. He is also getting under her skin. She knows he is anything but good for her and that he’ll never be faithful to anyone. He is jaded and has secrets Blaire knows she may never uncover but even knowing all of that...

Blaire just may have fallen too far.
Genre:  New Adult
Series:  Too Far #1

Ames: Okay Wena. You had a very intense reaction to this book, even taking to Twitter to share your feelings. Can you tell us how you really feel? LOL

Wena: If you read my rant on Twitter then you know what’s coming. This book didn’t work for me on ANY level which bummed me out because I was so looking forward to reading this book and to trying out this author. While I did give up on this series, I’m not giving up on the author, just yet. What about you, Ames? What did you think?

Ames: Well I saw a lot of positive buzz for this book and I haven't read any of her other books so I was real excited to read this one. And then the more I read, the more perplexed I was. I feel the same as you towards a lot of what happened in this book but maybe not as strongly. LOL

I did not like this book.

Wena: Yeah, me either.

There was so much about the book that I didn’t like. I really hated the way that Rush treated Blaire. The longer he treated her like trash and the more her feelings for him grew, I wanted to punch her in the throat. I mean, seriously. There is nothing sexy about a guy treating you like shit. There are too many other fishes in the sea to put up with that shit. Ugh.

Ames: I agree. I did not get why Blaire liked Rush - at all. He was sexy...and that was kind of it. And I'm sorry, if someone acts like a douche, they lose their sexiness.

Blaire honestly acted like a martyr. She's living in a freaking mansion and doesn't let herself eat the food? What the heck is that about?

Wena: I know. I thought it was so stupid that Rush had to beg her to eat the food. Dude, he gets it…you’re not a mooch. And you know what else pissed me off? His reasons for being such a douche to Blaire. How in the hell is it Blaire’s fault that all of that went down? Why the hell was she paying the price for things that were completely out of her hands?

The only good thing that Blaire did in this damn book was break up with Rush. And my disappointment in her will continue to grow since I’m sure she gets back with him in the next book or the book after that.

The only person that was good to her was the guy that Rush thought was a completely douche. What was his name again? Blaire’s boss’ son at the country club.

Ames: Woods? I think it something like that.

Blaire was an innocent in all of this. But sometimes she was too innocent. And hello, wear a freaking condom? Rush was such a manwhore.  I felt like they were extremely cavalier about protection.  Ugh.

I also hated Rush's sister. I hated Blaire's dad too. And honestly, I can't see Rush's mom taking Blaire's dad back after everything that went down.

Wena: You know, it’d be one thing if Blaire knew about them and knew what happened between their Moms all those years ago. I’d understand Rush’s sister’s thinking in hating her but Blaire knew nothing about any of them. So she comes to them, not knowing who the hell they are but they all know about her and were judging her and hating her. And freaking mean to her. And she had not a clue. Which yeah, made me hate the ever living daylights out of her stupid, spineless asshole of a father but it didn’t do Rush any favors in my opinion.

And I’m sorry but he kept Blaire sleeping under the stairs for far too damn long. When he tells her that he kept her under there because he couldn’t trust himself around her…I wanted to knee him in the balls. You kept her, the one that you’re falling in love with under the stairs in the servants small ass room because you wanted to bang her but you didn’t want to bang her? Oh, the creep factor for this guy just keeps getting worse and worse.

That’s the other thing that annoyed the snot out of me. Rush knew that she was watching him bang all of these chicks and he still did it. Creepy, much? But then Blaire goes and ups the creep factor by staying and watching him bang all of these chicks. Ugh.

There was so much wrong with this story for me that I got so freaking mad and stayed mad throughout the entire freaking book. I was so mad at myself for finishing it because I shouldn’t have finished it. I should have DNF’d it and moved on with my life.

Ames: I didn't get as angry at this book as you but little things did irk me. The under the stairs thing is one of them. He wouldn't even have been on the same floor as Blaire if she slept in a guest bedroom. But the whole stairs things just shows how Rush thought himself better than Blaire. And Blaire, at the beginning, doesn't stand up for herself at all. Annoying. And as much as I like a jealous hero, it only works if the heroine can deal with it. And Rush's various reactions to Woods' interest in her show that Rush was on the douchey side of a jealous hero.

So to sum up, Rush sleeps around, treats Blaire like rubbish and lies to her about so many things...that in no way says hero to me. He was a spoiled rich boy who didn't change enough for me by the end of the book. I did not like Rush at all. Blaire wasn't any better. Spineless martyr.

Also, it seemed like EVERYONE knew the business with Blaire's dad and somehow they were all able to keep the news to themselves? Nan was such a witch, I don't know why she didn't throw it into Blaire's face as soon as she realized who she was.

Wena: I hear you about the news not slipping out to Blaire sooner. What was the name of the girl that Blaire befriended? Why in the hell didn’t she tell Blaire? It was obvious that she knew. Who needs freaking enemies when you’ve got friends like that?

As far as characters went, Rush didn’t work for me and Blaire started off really good and then went down the tubes for me too. Outside of Grant, there weren’t very many people in the book that I did like. So as far as grading goes, this one gets a D from me.

Ames: I am giving Fallen Too Far a D as well. The writing was well done, but the characters and their actions just fell flat for me.

So May's book was not a winner for us. Let's hope our June selection is better. And for June, Wena and I will be reading...

...Wait for You by J. Lynn!

Saturday, June 1

New Releases - June 2013

Yep, it's that time of the month again! LOL, in term of books, books! I personally consider June to be the start of the summer, and if this month is any indication, this summer will be a nice one book-wise! Not a ton of releases, but some really good ones! Check out what we're looking for!

June 1

A Time for Us by Amy Knupp
Published by Harlequin
Time to move on from the past.

Now that she's in San Amaro, Texas, Dr. Rachel Culver has very little room for socializing. Working double shifts in the E.R. is jump-starting the medical career she's worked so hard for. She'll worry about a social life later. Still, when gorgeous firefighter Cale Jackson is constantly around, concentrating on work—and keeping old feelings at bay—is difficult.

How can Rachel not notice him? Especially when he's being so nice, so irresistible. Cale doesn't seem to understand she has good reasons to avoid him—reasons that only got bigger when she lost her twin sister. And the way he treats her… Well, her old dreams about their time together are waking up!
Genre: Category romance, contemporary
Series: n/a

Nath: I've read Ms Knupp and enjoyed her in the past and the SuperRomance line is my favorite of Harlequin... However, what got  my attention is that the heroine is a doctor. I don't know, it seems rare in contemporary lately. So I think this one can be really interesting :)

Openly Straight by Bill Konigsberg
Published by Arthur A. Levine Books
Rafe is a normal teenager from Boulder, Colorado. He plays soccer. He's won skiing prizes. He likes to write.

And, oh yeah, he's gay. He's been out since 8th grade, and he isn't teased, and he goes to other high schools and talks about tolerance and stuff. And while that's important, all Rafe really wants is to just be a regular guy. Not that GAY guy. To have it be a part of who he is, but not the headline, every single time.

So when he transfers to an all-boys' boarding school in New England, he decides to keep his sexuality a secret -- not so much going back in the closet as starting over with a clean slate. But then he sees a classmate breaking down. He meets a teacher who challenges him to write his story. And most of all, he falls in love with Ben . . . who doesn't even know that love is possible.
Genre: Young Adult
Series: n/a

Nath: Just wanted to say the cover is cute :P

Ames:  It is cute!  I read Out of the Pocket by this author and really enjoyed it so I'm excited about this one.  I like the author's humour and he writes strong characters.  Win win in my book.

June 4

Heart of Obsidian by Nalini Singh
Published by Berkley
A dangerous, volatile rebel, hands stained bloodred.
A woman whose very existence has been erased.
A love story so dark, it may shatter the world itself.
A deadly price that must be paid.
The day of reckoning is here.
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Series: Psy-Changeling, Book #12

Nath: Woooohooooo! LOL, like half of blogland, I'm looking forward to Heart of Obsidian :) Mainly because it's a psy-changeling book and Nalini Singh :) I've been staying really far away from any excerpts, teasers, spoilers, etc. Actually, this is the first time I'm reading the blurb LOL. But nevertheless, really looking forward to it :)

Ames:  I didn't even read the blurb until I looked it up to put in this post.  LOL  But I did read the first two chapters and wowza!  I can't wait to get my grubby little hands on this one!!  And Nath, I would say it's more than half of blogland.  LOL

Nath: LOL, I know. Probably closer to 90% :P

Monroe: This series is an auto buy for me (even though I think I am behind some lol)

Can't Stop Believing by Jodi Thomas
Published by Berkley
Cord McMillan gave up his freedom at eighteen when he went to jail for a crime he didn’t commit. Now, ten years later, he’s about to give it up again for a piece of land. Nevada Britain, his neighbor, has just made him an offer he can’t refuse: If he’ll marry her, she’ll sign over a section of property that their families have been fighting over for a hundred years. Nevada refuses to explain why, but Cord knows the bargain is in his favor. He just has one condition—she has to sleep in his bed every night for as long as their doomed marriage lasts. Nevada only wants to maintain her family’s legacy—and redeem herself for a wrong she did Cord years ago. But as she spends more time with her husband by necessity, she discovers something unexpected—a love so deep it takes her breath away.
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Harmony, Book # 6

Nath: Yay, another Harmony book. I'm really enjoying this series :) I'm not a fan of this trope though - where the hero goes to jail for a crime he didn't commit, but I'm curious to see Ms Thomas' take on it. I know it'll be different and I have to say, I wonder how the heroine wronged the hero...

One Sweet Ride by Jaci Burton
Published by Berkley
Race car driver Gray Preston enjoys fast cars and an uncomplicated life, until political aide Evelyn Hill enters the picture and complicates the hell out of it with a request that he help out his estranged father’s political campaign. Racing and politics don’t mix, but Gray and Evelyn’s sexual attraction sizzles like asphalt in August.
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Sports romance
Series: Play by Play, Book # 6

Nath: So it seems we have run out of Rileys to feature as main characters LOL. I liked what I've seen so far of Gray's character, so I'm putting this one on my radar. The thing with such a book is that you know exactly what you're getting in, so I tend to pick the Play by Play books when I need something familiar :)

Ames:  I'm so far behind on this series (I need to copyright that saying because I say it so much lol) but I just have to say Jaci Burton really lucked out with the cover gods.  I drool whenever I see a cover for this series because they're just so yummy.

Nath: LOL, I'm thinking trade-marking instead, Ames!

Monroe: Ditto Ames! I'm behind, but you introduced me to this author and yum-o! Lol

Entwined with You by Sylvia Day
Published by Berkley
From the moment I first met Gideon Cross, I recognized something in him that I needed. Something I couldn’t resist. I saw the dangerous and damaged soul inside–so much like my own. I was drawn to it. I needed him as surely as I needed my heart to beat.

No one knows how much he risked for me. How much I’d been threatened, or just how dark and desperate the shadow of our pasts would become.
Entwined by our secrets, we tried to defy the odds. We made our own rules and surrendered completely to the exquisite power of possession.
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Crossfire, Book #3

Ames:  I was less than impressed with book 2 (which I never reviewed, bad ames!) but I'm still looking forward to the next installment in Eva and Gideon's story.  Gideon did something in book 2 that I don't know if I can handle.

Monroe: I think I haven't read book two yet so I guess I'll wait and see how I like it before jumping into this one...though I did love book 1!

Fire Inside by Kristen Ashley
Published by Grand Central Publishing (Forever)
Lanie Heron isn’t looking for love—no surprise, considering her last serious relationship nearly got her killed. So when Lanie propositions Hop Kincaid, all she wants is one wild night with the hot-as-hell biker who patrols with the Chaos Motorcycle Club...

For Hop, Lanie has always been untouchable. She’s too polished and too classy for his tastes. But when she gives Hop the once-over with her bedroom eyes and offers him a night in paradise, he can’t say no. And he doesn’t regret it when he finds that Lanie is the best thing that’s ever happened to him—in or out of bed. Now the trick will be to convince her of that.
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Chaos, Book # 2

Ames:  I am still on the Kristen Ashley train and it is going strong.  I've already read this one and it annoyed me, but all KA books do on some level.

The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen
Published by Viking Juvenile
Luke is the perfect boyfriend: handsome, kind, fun. He and Emaline have been together all through high school in Colby, the beach town where they both grew up. But now, in the summer before college, Emaline wonders if perfect is good enough.

Enter Theo, a super-ambitious outsider, a New Yorker assisting on a documentary film about a reclusive local artist. Theo's sophisticated, exciting, and, best of all, he thinks Emaline is much too smart for Colby.

Emaline's mostly-absentee father, too, thinks Emaline should have a bigger life, and he's convinced that an Ivy League education is the only route to realizing her potential. Emaline is attracted to the bright future that Theo and her father promise. But she also clings to the deep roots of her loving mother, stepfather, and sisters. Can she ignore the pull of the happily familiar world of Colby?

Emaline wants the moon and more, but how can she balance where she comes from with where she's going?
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Series: n/a

Nath: I really enjoy Ms Dessen's YA books, she was one of the first YA authors that I've read. It's been a while since she had a new releases and so I'm going to check this one out :) I like how Ms Dessen weaves the characters and the issues into one emotional and good story :)

Ames:  I really enjoy her books too.  But ever since Along for the Ride, I haven't been able to pick up any of her new books.  I think I just loved it that much.  LOL

Nath: Well ever since Along for the Ride, there's only been one book before The Moon and More - What Happened to Goodbye... and you're not alone because I haven't read it yet either ^_^; But we're not that far behind!

Gameboard of the Gods by Richelle Mead
Published by Dutton
In a futuristic world nearly destroyed by religious extremists, Justin March lives in exile after failing in his job as an investigator of religious groups and supernatural claims. But Justin is given a second chance when Mae Koskinen comes to bring him back to the Republic of United North America (RUNA). Raised in an aristocratic caste, Mae is now a member of the military’s most elite and terrifying tier, a soldier with enhanced reflexes and skills.

When Justin and Mae are assigned to work together to solve a string of ritualistic murders, they soon realize that their discoveries have exposed them to terrible danger. As their investigation races forward, unknown enemies and powers greater than they can imagine are gathering in the shadows, ready to reclaim the world in which humans are merely game pieces on their board.
Genre: Fantasy, Dystopia
Series: Age of X, Book #1

Ames:  I enjoy Mead's writing so this has been on my wishlist for a while now.  :P

Monroe: Ditto above comment! Ha!

June 18

Roaring Midnight by Colleen Gleason
Published by Avid Press
Amid the glitzy age of Jazz, when gangsters and bootleggers control the cities, there lies another, more insidious threat ... the undead.

Macey Gardella is a typical young woman of the Roaring Twenties: she works a job, has her own flat, and loves to dance the Charleston. But when a mysterious man named Sebastian Vioget informs her she belongs to a family of vampire hunters, Macey is stunned and disbelieving.

Yet, strange and frightening things begin to happen, and when Macey comes face-to-face with one of the fanged creatures, she has no choice but to believe Sebastian. And when she learns his own soul depends on her willingness to carry forth the family legacy and hunt the undead, Macey capitulates and joins the fight.

As she begins to learn about her new life, Macey meets the handsome newspaper reporter known as Grady--who seems to know more about vampires than he should. When he begins to ask too many questions, she has to juggle her strong attraction to him with the need for secrecy.

Slipping into speakeasies and sampling bootlegged whiskeys, dodging gangster gunfire and trying to keep her nosy landlady from finding the stakes in her flat, Macey Gardella must navigate through a world of stunning violence, passionate romance, and dark betrayal...
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Series: The Gardella Vampire Chronicles, Book #6

Ames:  Funny story, back when she blogged more often, Colleen Gleason had a post about how one loads the dishwasher.  So, no lie, everytime I do the dishes, I think of Victoria from the Gardella series.  And I do the dishes frequently...so I'm SUPER glad to see a book coming out in that world (although different time period) again.  SQUEEEE!

What the Duke Desires by Sabrina Jeffries
Published by Pocket Books
Maximilian Cale, the Duke of Lyons, long ago buried his grief for his missing elder brother, Peter, who was presumed dead after being kidnapped. When a mysterious note arrives from Tristan Bonnaud asserting that the Duke's brother is alive, it leads Max straight to the winsome Lisette Bonnaud, illegitimate daughter of a viscount and Tristan's sister. Soon he and Lisette are traveling to Paris posing as husband and wife, in search of Tristan, who has disappeared. And the longer he spends with Lisette, the easier it is for Max to see that the line between dukedom and desire is easier to cross than he imagined...
Genre: Historical Romance
Series: The Duke's Men, Book #1

Nath: I'm a fan of Ms Jeffries' historical romance books and since she's on my auto-buy authors list at the moment, I'll be picking up What the Duke Desires :) Sometimes, life is so simple LOL.

Ames:  LOL  I agree Nath.  Sometimes its that simple and that's why it's on my tbb list too.

Son of Sobek by Rick Riordan
Published by Disney-Hyperion
Short story where Carter Kane meets Percy Jackson.
Genre: Fantasy Young Adult
Series: Kane Chronicles, Book #3.5

Nath: Well I think the blurb says it all! LOL. Son of Sobek is a short story that was included at the end of the paperback version of The Serpent's Shadow which came out in early May and is now available as a stand-alone e-novella. I've been waiting for this story for a long time! Can't wait!

The Heist by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg
Published by Random House Publishing (Bantam Books)
FBI Special Agent Kate O’Hare is known for her fierce dedication and discipline on the job, chasing down the world’s most wanted criminals and putting them behind bars. Her boss thinks she is tenacious and ambitious; her friends think she is tough, stubborn, and maybe even a bit obsessed. And while Kate has made quite a name for herself for the past five years, the only name she’s cared about is Nicolas Fox—an international crook she wants in more ways than one.

Audacious, handsome, and dangerously charming, Nicolas Fox is a natural con man, notorious for running elaborate scams on very high-profile people. At first he did it for the money. Now he does it for the thrill. He knows that the FBI has been hot on his trail—particularly Kate O’Hare, who has been watching his every move. For Nick, there’s no greater rush than being pursued by a beautiful woman . . . even one who aims to lock him up. But just when it seems that Nicolas Fox has been captured for good, he pulls off his greatest con of all: he convinces the FBI to offer him a job, working side by side with Special Agent Kate O’Hare.

Problem is, teaming up to stop a corrupt investment banker who’s hiding on a private island in Indonesia is going to test O’Hare’s patience and Fox’s skill. Not to mention the skills of their ragtag team made up of flamboyant actors, wanted wheelmen, and Kate’s dad. High-speed chases, pirates, and Toblerone bars are all in a day’s work...if O’Hare and Fox don’t kill each other first.
Genre: Mystery
Series: O'Hare and Fox, Book #1

Nath: I used to be a huge fan of the Stephanie Plum series until it became too redundant and the love triangle ruined it all for me. Over the years, I've kept an eye open for Ms Evanovich other releases and this one caught my eye. It sounds like something fun and has potential... I'm a bit wary though because it's a collaboration and Ms Evanovich has not a stellar history with them... but still, something to keep an eye on :) I'll definitively wait for reviews before picking this one though.

Monroe: Loved Plum before it got so repetitive so I too shall wait on reviews! :)

Once is Never Enough by Mira Lyn Kelly
Published by Harlequin KISS
She's going to do this. She's really going to do this!Nichole Daniels has had her share of heartbreak. Two broken engagements and a single bed are proof of that. But when a blue-eyed stranger offers her a taste of her every nighttime fantasy, she's considering putting an end to her dry spell!

Garrett Carter's reputation as a ladies' man…? Absolutely right. A danger to her mental health…? Definitely. The man for her…? Not on your life. Nichole has no intention of getting involved with a man known to be able to whisper almost any woman into bed! But something tells her that, when it comes to Garrett, one night will never be enough….
Genre: Category Romance, Contemporary
Series: n/a

Ames:  I read Never Stay Past Midnight by this author and I really enjoyed it.  So I'm going to see how her other books measure up.

Nath: Let me know how it is, Ames! Definitively could be something I enjoy, but the blurb just doesn't tell me enough.

June 25

The Newcomer by Robyn Carr
Published by Harlequin (Mira)
Single dad and Thunder Point's deputy sheriff "Mac" McCain has worked hard to keep everyone safe and happy. Now he's found his own happiness with Gina James. The longtime friends have always shared the challenges and rewards of raising their adolescent daughters. With an unexpected romance growing between them, they're feeling like teenagers themselves-suddenly they can't get enough of one another.

And just when things are really taking off, their lives are suddenly thrown into chaos. When Mac's long-lost-and not missed-ex-wife shows up in town, drama takes on a whole new meaning. They're wondering if their new feelings for each other can withstand the pressure...but they are not going down without a fight.
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Thunder Point, Book #2

Nath: First, I gotta say I really like the feel the covers of this new series emanate. It's just so calming :) I really enjoyed The Wanderer and can't wait to pick up The Newcomer, even though the ex-wife coming back in the portrait is not one of my favorite trope. But seriously, I can't wait to see the people of Thunder Point again! :)

Ames:  Ugh, it's not one of my favorite tropes either (hello, Mindy Project) but I am looking forward to being immersed in this small town again.  I really enjoyed The Wanderer :P

Two of a Kind by Susan Mallery
Published by Harlequin (HQN Books)
…Felicia Swift never dreamed she'd hear a deep, sexy voice from her past in tiny Fool's Gold, California. The last time Gideon Boylan whispered in her ear was half a world away… on the morning after the hottest night of her life. Her freaky smarts have limited her close friendships, and romance, but she came to Fool's Gold looking for ordinary. Gorgeous, brooding Gideon is anything but that.

Black Ops taught Gideon that love could be deadly. Now he pretends to fit in while keeping everyone at arm's length. Felicia wants more than he can give—a home, family, love—but she has a lot to learn about men…and Gideon needs to be the man to teach her.

As these two misfits discover that passion isn't the only thing they have in common, they just might figure out that two of a kind should never be split apart.
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Fool's Gold, Book #12

Nath: I haven't kept up with this series, simply because there's just an over-saturation of small town contemporary romance on the market. However, I might pick up this one. What I like about it is that the two main characters are not originally from Fool's Gold and that might be an interesting change :)

Monroe: Love these books. They are my comfort food :)

Exposed by Laura Griffin
Published by Simon & Schuster (Pocket)
With the click of her camera, Maddie Callahan inadvertently added herself to the hit list of a criminal mastermind the FBI’s been investigating for months. Agent Brian Beckmann is determined to protect the sexy photographer, but she may be his only lead.

As a forensic photographer, Maddie is used to seeing violence up close, but she’s never before been a target. When a freelance photo shoot goes awry, she realizes she may have seen, and perhaps photographed, the kidnapping of a key witness in a federal probe. And although her camera was stolen, Maddie has something that could be even more valuable to investigators. With the help of her colleagues at the Tracers crime lab, Maddie uncovers DNA evidence that provides a desperately needed break in the case.

Although Brian is reluctant to involve Maddie, she’s determined to help with the investigation and the two set out to track a vicious criminal known as The Doctor, whose far-reaching violence has led to multiple deaths. But as the task force gets closer to catching the deadly Doctor, Maddie is in more danger than ever...
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: Tracers, Book #7

Nath: I've been in the mood all year for romantic suspense and I know a lot of people who enjoy Ms Griffin's Tracers series. I've been especially looking for FBI agent and so, I might be giving this one a try :)

It Happened One Midnight by Julie Anne Long
Published by Harpercollins Publisher (Avon)
More than one beautiful woman’s hopes have been dashed on the rocky shoals of Jonathan Redmond’s heart. With his riveting good looks and Redmond wealth and power, the world is his oyster—until an ultimatum from his father and a chilling gypsy prophesy send him hurtling headlong toward a fate he’ll do anything to avoid: matrimony.

Intoxicating, elusive Thomasina de Ballesteros has the bloods of London at her feet. But none of them knows the real Tommy—the one with a shocking pedigree, a few too many secrets, and a healthy scorn for rakes like Jonathan.

She is everything Jonathan never wanted. But on one fateful midnight, he’s drawn into Tommy's world of risk, danger…and a desire he’d never dreamed possible. And suddenly he’s re-thinking everything...including the possibility that succumbing to prophesy might just mean surrendering to love.
Genre: Historical Romance
Series: Pennyroyal Green, Book #8

Ames:  Julie Anne is an auto-buy author for me.  I feel like the Pennyroyal Green series doesn't get as much praise as it deserves.  It's a good series!

He's the One - anthology
Published by Kensington
Linda Lael Miller
Batteries Not Required
The only boyfriend Gayle Hayes has is the battery-operated kind. But when she returns to her small Montana hometown, rodeo bad boy Tristan McCullough gives her a whole new lesson in power surge...

Jill Shalvis
James Scott warned his investigator ex-wife Ella to be more careful. Now he finds the irate woman nearly naked and handcuffed to the towel rack in his Mexican vacation condo. He should release her. Then again...

Lucy Monroe
Seducing Tabby
Everybody always wants Tabby Payton's beautiful sister. But not sexy English spy Calder Maxwell. He wants Tabby, body and soul, and he's willing to take the seduction to new levels to prove it...

Kate Angell
No Shirt, No Shoes, No Service
Violet Cates is done surfing beach bums. She's ready for a new wave, someone with more ambition than a grain of sand. Like Brad Davis. He looks like a beach bum, but looks can be so deceiving...

Cat Johnson
Fish Out of Water
Carla Henricks is a cowgirl through and through, but her lasso has never met an English professor like Mark Ross. It's true opposites attract. Staying together is the juicy part...
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: No Shirt, No Shoes, No Service is part of the Barefoot William series

Nath: It's on my radar because I've really been enjoying Ms Angell's Barefoot William series and so, if I pick up this book, that'll be the purpose :)

Spartan Frost by Jennifer Estep
Published by Kensington (K-Teen)
I’m Logan Quinn, the deadliest Spartan warrior at Mythos Academy. At least I was — until the day I almost killed Gwen Frost.

Professor Metis and Nickamedes say that I’m fine, that Loki and the Reapers don’t have a hold on me anymore, but I can’t risk it. I can’t risk hurting Gwen again. So I’m leaving Mythos and going somewhere far, far away.

I know Gwen wonders what’s happening to me, whether I’m safe. I can’t tell her, but this is my story...
Genre:  Young Adult, Fantasy
Series:  Mythos Academy, Book #4.5

Nath: I admit I'm not up-to-date with this series, but I'm intrigued with this novella because it's from Logan's POV. That would be interesting and a nice change of pace :)


Did we miss anything?