Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Annie and the Red Hot Italian / Annie's Secret (UK) - Carole Mortimer

Carole Mortimer’s Balfour Legacy book started out with a bang! As those of us who have been reading the series know that their father Oscar Balfour has recently lost his current wife and his ambition now is to see his daughters take charge of their lives and he also sends them on journeys which result in them finding a life partner.

Annie, has always felt the competition of her sisters so when she got a chance to not go on the family vacation and go with her university friends on an ski trip she took the chance. And then she realized how safe she had always played her life. When she met a drop dead gorgeous Italian man she took him up on his offer and spent time skiing, and had drinks at his private chalet. That’s not all they did, the result being a son Oliver. What neither of them counted on was that Luc never had the opportunity to make their dinner date the next night because he found out his father had suffered a stroke which had been brought on by Luc’s carelessness with the family business. Annie was shocked when he didn’t show up and then a month later when she found out she was carrying Luc’s baby. They was no way to contact him. Because they had acted on their mutual attraction more than getting to know each other, they never exchanged last names.

Now four and one half years later, her father Oscar Balfour insisted she should attend a conference in Italy and of course, quite by chance she bumps into that same very sexy Italian Luca de Salvatore. It was a crazy coincidence, who could have imagined that 4 ½ yrs later she would run into him? I immediately wondered if Oscar Balfour knew his grandson father’s identity and did he set it up because he knew life was too short? Luc thought something was familiar about Annie but he couldn’t pinpoint it until he recognized the tattoo on her back while she was swimming. However, Annie knew immediate who Luca was and wondered if she should tell him about Oliver.

When Luca returned back home to his father, he realized he was responsible for the state everything was in….his father’s health and the state of the family business. He literally grew up and worked day and night to make the business even more successful than it had been before. Luca was at the very same hotel as Annie. Something was familiar about her, the attraction was fierce and when he finally realized who she was and put two and two together when by accident he found out she had a four year old boy, he knew it was his child and he was furious. And then the battle began he was determined they marry or he would fight for custody. They constantly fought, we constantly drawn to each other, kissed, touched and argued. Annie stood her ground and Luc hurled accusations at her as to why she didn’t contact him. It was nasty and Annie was hurt but all of it.

A truce was called when Annie agreed to accompany him to his vineyard in Venice. They were somewhat relaxed with each other and then the inevitable happened, they made love. What they didn’t count on was they would be called back to London because Oliver had suffered an accident and was in the hospital. So many conflicting emotions, especially when Luc met his son for the first time. Annie was an incredible mother, a protective one but she knew without a doubt she loved Luc but she couldn’t marry him unless he returned that love. To stay strong she remembered the one of the Balafour’s motto's, “A Balfour should be frightened of nothing. Face your fears with courage and they will lead to further self-discovery.” Of course, they got their happy ending but at some cost and it was extremely creative how Carole Mortimer had her hero Luca realize what was most important in life and at what cost he was willing to make them all a happy and loving family.

The Balfour Legacy and the lengths Oscar Balfour goes through to guarantee his daughters’ happiness have been a joy to read. Of course, with his daughter Annie, as I suspected, he set up their reunion in Italy.

Book Description:

For once in her so-far-practical life, Annie was going to be daring...

Annie is a single mother who adores her young son - but as one of the notorious Balfour girls, she has to work hard to give her baby a normal childhood. Then a chance meeting forces her back into the world of

Luca de Salvatore, the gorgeous father of her child!

Friday, November 26, 2010

MISTLETOE AND THE LOST STILETTO (The Fun Factor) - Liz Fielding



As magical as the holiday season to soon be upon us, Mistletoe and the Lost Stiletto by Harlequin Romance author Liz Fielding was not only magical, it was charming, truly a Cinderella meets Prince Charming love story.

Lucy Bright was determined to get away from the man she was due to marry, because he not only lied, he deceived her in a most terrible way. Facing him at a press conference and taking a file from his office, she fled the press conference with his bodyguards chasing her. She spotted the upscale department store, Hastings and Hart not before breaking off the heel of one of her red stilettos during her attempted dash to hide. All Lucy could think of was the entire betrayal of her fiance and wanted just to hide in the department store restroom. However, while fleeing up the back stairs she stumbles and literally falls into the arms of Nathaniel Hart, and there is immediate chemistry between them. She takes his breath away but not for long because again she escapes his grip.

Nathaniel Hart was know overseeing the family business because his cousin wasn’t able to perform those duties. He was an excellent architect and had broken his father’s heart when he hadn’t wanted to become involved with Hastings and Hart. Thanks not all that got broken, one learns later on in this incredible love story, that Nat also got his heart broken when the woman he loved, his cousin’s wife was killed in a car accident. He didn’t do Christmas but he felt obligated to be working at the store. He was also determined to find the owner of the shoe left in the stairwell and to find out why body guards were chasing her.

You’ll love Lucy Bright’s character. As a baby, she was abandoned by her extremely young mother, raised in foster care, worked many jobs to get her degree in business. She was also exploited and plotted against by her fiance. At one time she worked with young children, so when the opportunity to hide at Hastings & Harts came up to be one of Santa’s elves and pose as someone else, she took it. However, no where to go, sleep or eat, you can imagine when Nat finds her taking a shower with her discarded elf costume, it was quite fun to read. This young woman sometimes said things she shouldn’t, she was fierce, extremely honest and she took his breath away. Nat was determined to care for her until he could sort things out so he offered her one of the rooms in the penthouse above the department store.

The chemistry was amazing between them and she needed his help and actually, in the end, he needed her as well. Christmas just around the corner, no color, no decorations in his home, all work and no play, they went out into London’s snowfall, talked and shared, built a snowman, made Christmas angels and kissed. Nat Hart was truly a Prince Charming because he was determined to help her sort out where everything had gone wrong with her ex-fiance, his betrayal to his company/employees and the media because the file Lucy was holding could seriously put the man behind bars.

Do you believe in love at first sight? I do because personally that’s what happened in my life and for Lucy and Nat the same thing for each of them. Just amazing to read their story and the lengths they both went to heal and help other. Have tissues near by when you read about Nat’s plans to make everything right and to give them their happy ending. A lovely holiday romance, one you absolutely won’t want to miss!


Behind the Book:

"MISTLETOE & THE LOST STILETTO started out life as Santa's Secret Elf. Lucy needs a hiding place and Hastings & Hart, one of the world's great department stores, seems ideal. But then she finds herself face to face with Nathaniel Hart. Spooked by the instant chemistry that flares between them, Lucy flees, but Nathaniel, armed only with one very expensive red designer stiletto, is determined to find her." L. Fielding
Book Description:

Lucy Bright can't believe it when she's plucked from secretarial obscurity and transformed into the pampered fiancĂ©e of a slick retail guru. But then she discovers it was all a publicity stunt! Rushing away from the media frenzy, she bumps—literally—into the arms of delicious tycoon Nathaniel Hart….
spooked by their instantaneous chemistry, Lucy flees—but Nathaniel is determined to find his barefoot beauty. Though all he has is one very expensive red designer stiletto to help him!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

THE PREGNANCY SHOCK - (The Drakos Baby) Lynne Graham


Billie Foster from the age of eight had lived on the Island of Speros along with her mother. Her mother was notorious for being with lots of men and that was putting it mildly. As a young child, Billie was “bullied” by some of the kids she went to school with, until Alexei Drakos, the son of Speros most importantly family. The Drakos family owned the entire island, it’s resorts and homes. Alexi was an only child, a very spoiled and arrogant Greek. And as he matured, women danced to his tune and then some.

Billie and Alexei had a history from that day on, especially when he found out her mother Lauren had left her alone for days and he took her home to his family’s villa until her mother who didn’t have a maternal finger, returned home from Athens. They had a connection and I firmly believe at that moment Billie fell in love with the handsome Greek! The only other person Billie could count on in her life was her aunt Hillary, her mother’s sister. Throughout the years, Billie went back and forth from Speros to Athens for her schooling. During her university years she worked odd jobs to put herself through school and when she finished school and her first job which didn’t work out for her, she applied and was hired as a personal assistant by Alexei Drakos. He was a very demanding an obstinate boss who demanded long hours of Billie’s time.

Billie certainly earned every bit of money working directly for Alexi. She made all of his travel plans, bought parting gifts for his women and took care of everything he didn’t have time for, including managing all of his properties all over the world. And now she had a secret she was keeping from him and she wanted months off because she was needed in England to help her Aunt Hillary. She deliberately lied to Alexei about why she needed the time off, because she was pregnant with his baby, a baby he would not know he had a part in creating because he suffered a slight amnesia and didn’t and couldn’t remember he had slept with Billie due to a head injury. A head injury due to a fall and hitting his head on the evening of both of her parents death!

I was so amazed at Billie’s love for Alexei and what lengths she would go to protect him and her baby son. There were so many complications because a woman he had once loved, a woman, Calisto who had married an older man because of his wealth, was now free and she was also his mistress. So Billie’s plan was to go to England, have the baby and pass him off as her aunts baby son. She would return home to Speros and to the home she had built for herself, where she, her son Nikolos and her aunt would all live. Back to the man she adored and loved but would need to love from afar because he was with the “horrible” Calisto, a demanding and spoilt woman who made his staff at the office and the villa all dance to her personal tune.

One of Billie’s first duties was to organize an annual Speros festival where the villagers would be invited to the Drako’s villa for the festivities and then on board the Drako’s yacht. Calisto didn’t want the festival at the villa but Alexei and in the end created such a scene that Alexei dismissed her from his life. As for Billie, her mother guessed who the father of Nicky was and her aunt continued to beg Billie to tell Alexei he was Nicky’s father. And then when Billie accompanied Alexei to a business meeting at his London’s residence and asked her to be his hostess, he also asked her to be his life’s partner, his wife? Was this crazy or not? Alexei told her he wasn’t a romantic, never would be but he wanted no more casual sex, he wanted her in his life and knew there was an attraction. Billie thought he was on the rebound but he assured her he respected, trusted her, admired her honestly and first and foremost she knew him better than anyone. As far as proposals went, she was offended because honestly, Alexei took her for granted and also her love for him. However, he was irresistible and she wanted her chance to become his wife, wanted her chance for the three of them to be a family.

While reading the final chapters I had the feeling of a brewing disaster yet I thought how would the extremely talented Lynne Graham tie this all together in such a short time? Shame on me, as I did not do my normal research by checking Lynne’s website. Had I done so I would have found out there would be a book two, which would address their marriage, Alexei learning he had a son and of Billie’s betrayal. Would he understand? Well I hoped for her sake and for that of her son’s he would and I was thrilled when my copy of A Stormy Greek Marriage arrived on my doorstep!

Back Blurb:

When his personal assistant asked for extended leave, Greek billionaire Alexei Drakos was extremely inconvenienced. He relied on Billie Foster for everything—running his life, even getting rid of his girlfriends. Little did Alexei know that Billie had left to have his baby! In fact, he didn't even remember their passionate night and he had no idea she was pregnant!

With Billie gone, there was something missing in Alexei's glittering existence. When she returned, he needed to offer her something special to make her stay—maybe a wedding ring of convenience?

(From the Drakos Baby linked-story duet).
This book is part one of a linked story. See Part Two: A Stormy Greek Marriage.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

SHAMEFUL SECRET, SHOTGUN WEDDING – Sharon Kendrick (Snowkissed and Seduced!)



Shameful Secret, Shotgun Wedding was one extremely intense and shamefully sexy romance by the very talented and extraordinary Sharon Kendrick.

Cassandra Summers was a very young and innocent shop girl working in a London high end retail store. She was a sweet girl from Cornwall and although she adored her recently widowed mother she felt in order to succeed she needed to learn more about the retail business and what better way than to do it in London, during the Christmas season. It was there she met the very handsome Italian millionaire Giancarlo Vellutini and it was also there that she was fired because of this sexy and arrogant man! He had purchased some candles for his staff but left them behind. It was the perfect time to deliver them to him, because she was meeting him for dinner at his home. However, Giancarlo forgot to pay for them and a nasty and jealous employee told the security team that Cassie had stolen them.

Had Giancarlo Vellutini made a mistake by inviting Cassandra to his home for dinner? She was a beautiful young woman with violet eyes and she enchanted him. So much so, he couldn’t keep his hands off of her and he stole her virginity. The next day, back to work for both of them. However, what he didn’t count on was getting a hysterical call from her and what he also didn’t count on was inviting her to stay with him for the Christmas holidays as his mistress so that she wouldn’t have to return home as a failure. Three weeks of happiness and bliss for Cassie and for him a young woman who worshipped him, a young woman I was sure was going to receive a broken heart when the affair ended, and she did, when he took her to Paris and they parted with simmering emotions between them. Cassie was so unlike the women he usually dated, she was wholesome, fourteen years younger, inexperienced in the world. However, he told her things about himself he had really never shared before and she wanted nothing materialistic from him, she only wanted to please him.

And then Cassandra for one last time, made love with Giancarlo and returned home to her mother, friends and job in Cornwall, sad and lonely and a few weeks later, pregnant! Something had changed for her when she found out she was expecting her lover’s child. She became fierce and she called him to tell him he was going to be a father but not before they argued and she told him she didn’t want anything from him, she would raise the child on her own. However, Mr. Italian alpha had other ideas and he railroaded her into marriage, a loveless one and not wanting to reveal to anyone they were expecting a child before they made their marriage binding and a legal one.

As I mentioned before, Giancarlo told Cassie a few things about himself, how his parents had died, that he and his twin brother had been raised in Tuscany, while in college he studied law and his twin Raul, business. They had constantly competed in life, so much so that the woman Giancarlo had fallen in love with, married his brother because as Italian law would have it, when they turned 21, Raul being the older by mere minutes, inherited his family’s entire fortune. So you can well imagine how shocked I was that he would take Cassandra to Italy on their honeymoon to meet his estranged brother, lover and niece. And trust me, it all ended in a mess! Her new sister-in-law was a witch with a capital “W”, it was all very upsetting for Cassie.  The older woman was mean, spiteful and went so far as saying she wanted Giancarlo for herself. She made Cassie feel out of her league and pointed out the differences between Cassie and her husband, noting that Cassie hadn’t even met his friends.

When they returned home, everything seemed to go downhill. Cassie wanted to make a home for her husband, wanted to cook for him, wanted to have a dinner party and meet his friends. It seemed that everything she wanted, he didn’t and she was so emotional and sweet and one could tell they had communication problems. She felt she was just an incubator, a vessel to carry his child and she so desired to be his equal. Then a chain of events happened, so emotional I had to stop reading because their relationship was so painful for them both and I so wanted Giancarlo to fall in love with his wife. First, a disaster dinner party for his friends and then a rush to the hospital because they believed they were loosing their baby. Could this relationship take anymore hits?

Shameful Secret, Shotgun Wedding had the most amazing ending, but why would it not, thanks to the amazing Sharon Kendrick! An out pouring of love so beautiful and perfect because Giancarlo finally realized to love did not bring pain nor bitterness and his loving and generous wife forgave and believed him!

Behind the book:

Sharon shares at I(Heart)Presents

Description:

When renowned international playboy Giancarlo Vellutini invites shop assistant Cassie Summers to join him for dinner, how can she refuse? After all, she is an ordinary girl and chances like this don't come around very often!

Throwing caution to the wind, unworldly Cassie is completely at Giancarlo's mercy before she knows it. She finds herself agreeing to be his mistress for Christmas.... But will an unexpected gift make this temporary festive arrangement last a lifetime?

HIGH-SOCIETY SEDUCTION (The Roth's) - Maxine Sullivan


The Roth brother’s each unique, each handsome, each wealthy and each one lethal and Maxine Sullivan has again written an extremely powerful love story. It’s one full emotion, passion and revenge. High Society Seduction was about family loyalties, friendships and two lovers caught in the middle. In the end for Adam and Jenna to find their happiness, it was about letting go of the past.

Jenna Branson was troubled when she learned from her brother that the deceased Liam Roth had $350,000 of his money he had invested in Roth’s business venture. While attending an event with her boss and his wife at the race track Jenna was introduced to Liam’s brother, Adam. Sparks immediately arched between them and Adam was definitely interested in seeing Jenna again. However, he received the shock of his life when Jenna revealed her brother’s secret but he finally agreed to at least check into the matter and find out if her accusations were true.

Adam Roth was an extremely handsome millionaire and playboy. He had once been married and lost his wife and unborn baby in an automobile accident. It took him months to get over their deaths with the help of his close friend Todd and now that same friend’s wife Chelsea was coming on to him and he wanted it to stop. Especially before Todd got hurt! When he learned from Jenna about her brother’s problem and that she needed him to help her brother and his family, Adam came up with a plan to kill two birds with one stone. He would look into the lost money if she would agree to play his “pretend” mistress until he could get this difficult situation with Chelsea under control.

Jenna agreed, only for the sake of her brother because he had left his family and went to work out of the country to try to earn some of the money he’d lost back. She couldn’t believe how attracted she felt towards Adam. It was a distraction and she didn’t like it. And then she met Todd and Chelsea and could see for herself that Adam had a mess on his hands. On top of that she also met Adams mother and liked her very much. She knew how much Adams family meant to him, he loved them, and of course he wanted to protect his dead brother’s name. But at her families expense?

Both situations became complicated for both of them. Attending different functions with him, going away for a weekend with him at Todd and Chelsea’s summer home, and making passionate love plus the blatant flirting from Chelsea….what a mess. Throw into the mix having lunch at the Roth’s family estate because it became very clear the Roth’s actually thought Adam and Jenna were a couple. And just when I thought they might have a chance to really fall in love, Adams revealed the truth about Jenn’a brother. Talk about a shocker.

Jenna was passionate about her family. She adored her parents, brother, sister-in-law and nieces. She especially wanted to help her sister-in-law because she didn’t know the truth about the lost money and then the bank threatened to foreclose on her brother’s home due to lack of payment. However, Jenna was strong, stronger than she realized because she had to not only face the shock of what her brother had done, she also had to face the fact that she had become pregnant and that Adam would never marry her because he couldn’t let go of his dead wife and child. He would never marry her nor be a father to her baby, he would never love her as she loved him. So with determination she walked away and forced her brother and family face up to her brother’s problems.

I wondered how Maxine Sullivan would give her hero, Adam a wake up call. Well it came first when he learned Jenna was pregnant and then when she fainted and had to be taken to the hospital. Adam knew he would provide for the baby he also felt she deserved more because he had lost his heart five years earlier with the death of his family. Jenna was not only a beautiful person, she touched people and in the end she touched Adam, because it took her being taken to the hospital to realize he loved her; she had repaired the hole in his heart.








Behind the book:

"The first book in my Roth family series, High-Society Secret Baby, had been a story brewing in me for a long time. I hadn’t really thought about making it a series, but as I started writing the book for Silhouette Desire, I could easily see the benefit of adding a second brother to the mix, intricately weaving the lives - and loves - of Dominic and Adam Roth around their late brother, Liam.


Of course, then I had to decide on the storyline for this second brother. He was a man in his own right and not in the least in his older brother’s shadow. He needed a woman who could stand up to him… who challenged him and his belief that he was beyond getting emotionally involved with a woman after his wife was killed in a car accident. Enter Jenna Branson - and High-Society Seduction was born." M. Sullivan

I would also like to suggest you read High Society, Secret Baby, the older Roth brother's story.

Book Description:

A question of lust or loyalty?

He needed a mistress. A pretend mistress, that is. So when Jenna Branson confronted playboy billionaire Adam Roth, demanding he return money his brother stole from her family, Adam saw his opportunity. He'd look into her accusations, but she must act as though they're involved—intimately. Anything to rid himself of the unwanted attention of his best friend's wife.

The proposition seemed simple, but soon their game of seduction was no longer just for show. Then a high-stakes confrontation forced them to choose between family loyalty…and the chance of forever.

He would possess her!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

EVERY GIRL'S SECRET FANTASY - Robyn Grady


Every Girl’s Secret Fantasy is a marvelously crafted romance by best selling author Robyn Grady. I read it from cover to cover, it was that special and very romantic!

Pace Davis and his brother Nick had aways been competitive. After their father passed away, Pace took over the helm of the family business, Broderick’s and then something he didn’t plan on happened, he made a horrible mistake and had to step down as the one being in charge. Now his brother Nick was the President and Pace, who was actually Davis Pace Brodrick and a millionaire was the Technical Rep/Chief Mechanic at very high end Broderick’s who catered to the rich and famous. They were also a sponsor of a local TV station and one of the hosts, Phoebe Moore caught Pace’s eye and interested him. In fact she more than interested him, he was a determined man, trust me.

Phoebe’s character was amazing because she had so much feeling and depth. However, she’s made a couple of mistakes in past relationships, her latest being her boss at her TV station. However, she learned one lesson from it, the passion wasn’t there and she ended it However, being a man he turned the tables and told her it was her fault and he never enjoyed sleeping with her. At the top of her list was to find “Mr. Right NOW”.  The attraction between Pace and Phoebe was beyond amazing, He was handsome, had a great body, had a sense of humor and loved to tease her. He made her feel all sorts of crazy things and emotions, and he kept asking her out. She believed if she said yes to Pace, it would end in a disaster.

Phoebe grew up in a small country town as an illegitimate child and that fact was always first and foremost in the eyes of the town and her friends parents. Her mother never stopped loving the man who never wanted to meet her. In fact, she was on her way to see him when Phoebe was young and was killed in a head on accident. Her Aunt, ended up raising her and now her aunt needed her because the boiler in her country home was on the blink and Phoebe wanted to take care of it before the Winter arrived. As fate would have it, the repair man wasn’t available, Pace came to the rescue with a car and a tool box and off they went to her Aunt’s country home.

While in the country everything changed between them. There was almost a car accident which shook her up and reminded her of her mother death. Phoebe shared about her life growing up in a small town, her mother, her aunt raising her but that’s not all she shared, it was inevitable there was more than chemistry, it was earth shattering for both of them.  The only thing Pace shared was his body.  He didn't talk about his years growing up nor about his family.

Pace romanced Phoebe, did special things for her and in the end, he wanted her to move in with him. Romanced didn’t even describe it……..dinner, violins at a penthouse anddozens and dozens of roses.  Plus the time spent at his mansion which she didn’t understand because she believed him not to be a rich man! However, she was guarded with her emotions because she didn’t want to end up like her mother. But she felt “complete” with Pace. She also knew she would need to walk away the day she fell in love  and got in “too deep” because she wouldn’t end up like her mother. Being with Pace had helped her grow, he helped her forgive her mother and helped her  face so much about herself.

In a most bizarre way, Pace’s secrets were revealed hurting Phoebe and my heart broke for her. The only positive thing that happened was he and his brother healed old wounds, became a team but when Pace’s true identity was revealed it was shocking for Phoebe and they both agreed to walk away from their affair. What a mess because Pace needed to give his entire attention to his brother and the business to fix problems his brother had incurred but at what cost? As for Phoebe, she was devastated but she was so much stronger and was determined to move forward even if it killed her. And then in the end, he came to her, admitted he was wrong and he gave her his heart in a most breath taking way as only Robyn Grady can pen.

Author’s website



Robbie talks about her book over at I(Heart)Presents






Book Description:

Mechanic Pace Brodrick has stepped straight out of prim Phoebe's wildest fantasy—oil slicked and dangerously sexy, he's her perfect Mr. Right Now!

Phoebe's long overdue on some excitement—and Pace's wicked smile guarantees she'll have the thrill of her life!

Then Pace discovers the temptress behind Phoebe's good-girl facade! She drives him wild—but will she want their fling to last forever when she discovers Pace has been lying to her all along? For this bad boy is actually a secret millionaire….

Monday, November 15, 2010

WEDDING HIS TAKEOVER TARGET (The Jarrods) - Emilie Rose



A controlling father from the grave and a will that stipulated all of his children work at the Jarrod Manor for a certain amount of time! Actually, I’ve read all of the series books so far and they are extremely amazing. So this is Gavin Jarrods story and the beautiful and sweet Sabrina Taylor’s story.

Sabrina Taylor, I wondered how she survived her childhood without the attention of her parents,  Her parents were academics and didn’t have time for her.  However, she spent time with her grandparents and they adored her. The love of her grandparents, her vacations spent with them at their wonderful B and;B in Aspen had provided some joy and  given Sabrina some peace.  She however, had known some heartache.  She had married at a young age, lost a baby and then her husband died while serving in the military. Her marriage and the love of her grandparents made her the woman she was today.

Gavin Jarrods family needed a parcel of land to build a high end security based property for high end clients or heads of state of secure their security. His grandfather lost the parcel of land to Henry Caldwell who owned a local B&B and so he set out to make a bargain but what he didn’t realize was that Pops Caldwell had a plan……he wanted his grand daughter to be married and happy because of her past and because he wouldn’t always be around so he made a deal with Gavin to court and marry Sabrina and in return, he would sign the deed over to the Jarrods. What Gavin didn’t count on was that he actually found her attractive, he liked her, was attracted to her and didn’t regret making a pact with her cunning gramps.

Pops and Gavin were both crafty men, manipulated Sabrina and she fell head over heels for Gavin in the end. Working and playing together was incredible to read and how they got to know each other and feel comfortable with each other was beautiful. However, always in the back of my mind was Gavin was using her and when and how would he get caught? Well trust me, he got more than caught, she found out immediately after they got married. Talk about getting caught, they both were because on top of the betrayal, there was an unexpected pregnancy.

Would they find their happiness, would Sabrina forgive Gavin for his betrayal? And what would be the cost to Gavin and the Jarrods? Emilie Rose was a new author for me and she planned their happy ending in a most unusual and amazing way. Because, in the end, for Gavin she was his reason of making him not want to go on the road again, she was his reason for coming home. Wedding His Takeover Target was such a spectacular love story and a wonderful addition to The Jarrods series.

Book Description:

Nothing could stop Aspen resort heir Gavin Jarrod's land grab. Not even the ornery owner's insistence that Gavin marry his granddaughter to seal the deal. Gavin was up to the challenge of wedding perfect stranger Sabrina Taylor, since this beautiful stranger was perfect. After a whirlwind seduction, he had her wed and bedded…to their mutual satisfaction.

But what was this new groom to do once his bride announced she was pregnant with his child? It was back to the bargaining table—because she wanted a real father for her baby or this merger was off!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

IN CHRISTOFIDES' KEEPING - Abby Green





 
Intensity, conflict, trust and sensual tension all rolled into one incredible love story as penned by Abby Green. In Christofides' Keeping was an exceptional book giving this couple who shared a one night stand and making it so much more.

Gypsy had trust issues. Her single mother, on her own, tried to raised her and in the end it was too much so she gave her to the man who was her father. A nasty man who didn’t want her, verbally abused and kept her away from her mother who eventually died in a mental health institution. And now her father was dead. On a fateful night she met a handsome Greek and they only exchanged first names, Gypsy and Rico and they had a one night affair. The following morning he left her a cold note and later on the news she saw what he did to women who tried to betray him, claiming he was the father of their child. He destroyed them publicly.

Rico Christofides’, successful billionaire couldn’t get the woman he slept with two years earlier out of his mind. He remembered their one night of passion and returned to London on business, or so he thought and then he saw her working as a waitress, the fire was still there and she ran. However, her boss gave him her address and from then on everything changed. Gypsy had a small child with his eyes, he did the math and went ballistic! Just like her controlling father, Rico demanded she leave her shabby apartment and move in with him. Once the paternity was established, he was furious, he couldn’t believe she had kept his daughter from him, had deceived him and wondered if she would have ever told him, he was a father.

For Gypsy, this was torture because her body betrayed her and so in the end did her heart. However, remembering her father and how he treated her, how all wealthy men treated and demanded things from the female sex, she was determined to keep her beautiful daughter Lola safe and worried that Rico would try to take her away. In the end, they agreed on fifteen months with the three of them living together. It was hard on both of them, emotionally and physically especially when they travelled to Buenos Aires where they attended Rico’s brothers sons christening. She learned all sorts of things about Rico, how his stepfather had physically abused him, about how his mother had lied, he barely had a chance to meet his biological father and on and on. Plus the fact that he gave his family the impression their being together was temporary. And then on to Greece and Rico’s villa, all changed for the three of them. Rico enjoyed his role as Lola’s father and each day the tension built until it finally snapped and they made love.

Trust was an issue for both of them, especially Gypsy. Rico wondered what she was hiding about her past and Gypsy was frightened that Rico would in the end, be like her father. Trust was like giving up a little piece of yourself, a part of the control you had over your life, because when someone got in that “circle of trust,” they were also in a position to hurt you and she couldn’t allow that. She had been there, done that!

The ensuing chapters tugged at my heart because of the trust issues, the secrets Gypsy was keeping and reading about their relationship because it was obvious that both of them were teetering on something that could become very special. When Gypsy’s past was revealed, I was overwhelmed. Would Rico be able to prove he wasn’t like Gypsy’s father? Would the three of them get their second chance and a happy ending? The final scenes had me sobbing. In Christofides’ Keeping was every bit as amazing as Bride in the Gilded Cage, the connected story about these two Greek brothers and very proud men. Simply stated…… this romance was extremely impressive!

Book Description:

Pregnant and alone...

When one night with ruthless playboy Rico Christofides leaves her pregnant, Gypsy Butler is determined to spare her unborn baby the heartache of her own neglectful childhood. But a shock meeting is about to change her plans...

Captured and claimed!

Rico has never forgotten - or forgiven - the one woman who managed to smash through his cast-iron defenses. Now he's discovered he's a father, nothing will stop him from claiming his child...even if unwilling Gypsy craves her freedom!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

TO TAME A SHEIKH (Pride of Zohayd) - Olivia Gates

Recently, author Olivia Gates was quoted in an interview saying she wanted to write this triology, Pride of Zohayd for years. To Tame a Sheikh was everything Gates desired it to be and more for this reader as her desert prince and his once childhood friend Joharea were truly magnificent characters and lovers. Their love story was “most intense, romantic, and a devoted love story.” It was magical to read!

As a child, Zohara Nazaryan and her family resided in the palace in the kingdom of Zohayd as her father was the royal jeweler. Her brother had been best friends with the King’s youngest son, Prince Shaheen. From the moment Zohara had set eyes on this older young man, she loved and adored him. And then as he grew older his distanced himself from she and her family and she never understood why.

Shaheen had advised his father he would accept an arranged bride but he also promised a friend before leaving, he would attend a party. Johara knew the man she had always loved was going to attend a party in his honor and she wanted to see him as it had been twelve long years. Then their eyes locked, he sought her out but for some reason he didn’t recognize her but he wanted her with such intensity, it sizzled off of the pages. He took her to his room, took her virginity and made love taking both of their breath away. In the morning she left and Shaheen had no idea of her last name or how to contact her.

Eight weeks earlier, Johara’s dreams came true when she laid in the arms of the man she had adored and loved. Now she was back in Zohayd to help her father as he was going to retire. And then they saw each other and Shaheen realized he absolutely couldn’t marry another woman, that this woman of his heart, the woman he had always loved even as a young girl but never admitted it was the woman he wanted permanently in his life. And then things changed for them both as well as the royal family. They found out that the royal jewels were fakes and of course suspicion was placed on Johara and her father. Even his older brother believed she was involved and his middle brother, well in the end believed she and her father had no involvement.

Reading about all three desert sheikhs makes me NOT want to wait for their stories if they are going to be anything like To Tame a Sheikh. It’s obvious that each brother is going to be strong, handsome, unusual and when he finally finds that special woman to love, he’ll fall hard.  Personally, I can't wait!

Johara’s and Shaheen’s journey was not an easy one because not only were facing the jewelry scandal that could take down their country, Johara was pregnant the family eventually learned plus the fact that the entire Zohayd tribal council were counting on Shaheen marrying one of their own. If he didn’t, it would cause a major war but he wouldn’t hear of it as he worshiped, adored and loved Johara and was determined to marry her and keep his child.

Would they get their second chance? Would the mystery behind the fake crown jewels be unraveled? If you believe in miracles, then believe in this love story, because with the support of family, they get their second chance along with the last few chapters setting the scene for the upcoming books in the series. To Tame A Sheikh was an incredible and extremely moving royal love story.

Behind the book:

“I’ve been dreaming of it for a very long time. I’ve been wanting to write this trilogy ever since I was writing my first sheikh trilogy for Desire, THRONE OF JUDAR.

This trilogy takes place in the neighboring allied kingdom of Zohayd, and the heroes are the half-brothers of Aliyah, the heroine of the final chapter in JUDAR’s trilogy, THE DESERT KING.

But I had to write five books in between to get here, so I was very anxious to start this book. Then when I did, the characters came alive, and defied my plans for them. My original plot was filled with conflict and doubt. But even though it was reasonable to doubt each other with all the evidence, the characters laughed at my logic. THEY knew each other, would never doubt one another, and I should butt out.

The result was the most intense, romantic, devoted love stories I’ve ever written. So far, I’ve gotten amazing reviews for it, and I’m thankful for and thrilled with each word of praise for those two exceptional lovers. I hope everyone else who reads their story will think the same.” O. Gates

Book Description:

He would possess her!
He’d noticed her across a crowded room, and in that instant Sheikh Shaheen Aal Shalaan wanted her. With just a few words, Shaheen had his mystery woman in his bed, where she awakened passions he’d long denied.

Then the sheikh discovered his lover’s true identity. She was Johara, his childhood friend, now fully blossomed into a vision he could not do without. But his lineage demanded he take a wife of the throne’s choosing. Anything else would have catastrophic results. Yet how could he turn away from the woman who carried his baby?

To Tame A Sheikh—Book One PRIDE OF ZOHAYD trilogy—Nov 2010
To Tempt A Sheikh—Book Two PRIDE OF ZOHAYD trilogy—Feb 2011
To Touch A Sheikh—Book Three PRIDE OF ZOHAYD trilogy—Aug 2011


Monday, November 08, 2010

CASTELLANO'S MISTRESS OF REVENGE - Melanie Milburne






Castellano’s Mistress of Revenge started out to be exactly that “revenge” at first but dramatically changed and it caused such an “ache” in my heart for this couple who had once been and it continued on through out the entire book, to the very end! This second chance romance, this happy ending was extremely enjoyable as only the very talented Melanie Milburne could write.

Normally I read a book of this size in one day but I realized I needed to take my time because of the intensity. Actually, it took me three days to digest this love story, such a strong intensity that required reading it and putting it down. You will cry, want to scream, maybe even through the book across the room, that’s how intense and extremely wonderful it was to read, with many tears shed.

How does one begin? She loved him from the first moment she met him. Loved him completely and he couldn’t commit, never wanting marriage nor children. He had his reasons because of what he experienced in his childhood but she loved and adored him. When Ava realized their relationship wasn’t going anywhere, she left him.

After their mother passed away she took care of her younger sister. Her sister was employed in accounting and made a huge error. In order to save her sister from being prosecuted, she went to her employer. She was literally blackmailed into a marriage by the owner, an older man who was ill and wanted to keep up appearances with being married to a young wife. And then her sister had married and was trying desperately to have a baby and the treatments were extremely expensive, so Ava was able to help her sister out. In the end, she also took care of her dying husband even though they didn’t share a bed.

Her husband ruined her ex-lover Marc Castellano and he took most of her life with him, five years of being at his side for appearances only. Now he was dead and had left a ton of debts behind. Now Marc was back in her life and owned everything and wanted her as his mistress. Again she was being blackmailed into a relationship in order to help her sister never giving any thought to herself.

No one walked out on him, and she was responsible for him being ruined, thanks to her husband. The press labeled her as a gold-digger and he believed them. However, he still wanted her with such a force it couldn’t be denied. For both of them, as much as they both fought it, it all came tumbling back, it was basic, it was sensual, it was need that couldn’t be denied. It tortured them both, it consumed them, it couldn’t be stopped even it they wanted it to

Marc moved into her villa and demanded she share his bed. He also made all sorts of accusations, breaking her heart but at the same time making her want him so much with an intensity that knocked her sideways. In fact, they both felt it every time they were near each other. And then, the tension finally got to them and they made love. On top of that there was a threat of a pregnancy. Physical, emotional and sensual pain is all I can say, so much so I had to put this book aside because I so wanted them to resolve things and get their second chance. However, learning about Marc’s childhood made me realize that Ava knew nothing about it and it would cloud any chance for them to move forward until Marc could come to terms with his past.

Did Marc want revenge? Honestly, I felt he fought it the entire time because he couldn’t get her out of his system and there were so many secrets he wasn’t aware of, so much he didn’t realize like how much she had sacrificed for her sister and her husband. They both had such strong feelings about each other, a strong love/hate relationship, one of such passion it lept off of the pages. But so did all of the mistrust and tension in their new relationship. Add to the fact that Marc didn’t trust her and manipulated their entire affair. Add to all that a possible pregnancy scare with a man who didn’t ever want a child or marriage? How I wondered, would they survive this false time together?

So much anger, sorrow and pain and I sincerely wondered if for a second they would survive it? Ava was such a vibrant and strong woman and gave the impression she was strong while she crumbled with her love for Marc. However, for Marc to come to terms with the past and present, he had to face his demons and realize how much he wanted, needed and loved this woman. In the end, this incredibly sexy man and this strong and amazing woman got that happy ending along with a most special prize. However, to learn about it, you’ll have to read this amazing, interesting and extremely entertaining love story by the very talented Melanie Milburne.


Behind the book:
 
Book Description:


Men like Marc Castellano don't forgive. They get revenge…

Five years ago, Ava McGuire married Marc's business rival, causing a high-profile scandal. But no one knows that Ava was forced to say "I do." Now a widow, she's left with nothing but crippling debts and another scandalous proposition.

Marc is going to have Ava right where he wants her…not with a ring on her finger, not even in the palm of his hand. But in his bed for as long as he desires….

Sunday, November 07, 2010

UNFINISHED BUSINESS WITH THE DUKE - Heidi Rice


Fascinating is the word I would use to describe Unfinished Business With the Duke. Adding to that sweet, sexy and sad because the hero, handsome Gio Hamilton refused to acknowledge his past hurts as a child. He also refused to get involved or have any sort of relationship with a woman.

The author’s heroine Issadora or Izzy as her friends called her was magnificent. She was a fiery redhead with a heart as wide as the ocean. She was sweet, charming, fierce and could be determined at times. Issy adored her mother and father and then her father died. As a young girl she and her mother lived at the manor taking care of Gio and his father the Duke. Issy had loved Gio and felt so incredibly sad because Gio’s relationship with his father and mother was horrible. His parents had used him as a pawn. His father tormented and yelled at him and his mother neglected him. Because of her love for him at age 17 she on particular night when he had argued with his father Issy went to him and blatantly told him she wanted him. In one heated moment he took her virginity. She told him she loved him and he dismissed her with cruel words. He didn’t regret his decision to walk away because she had been so romantic and so very young.

Now years later, Gio was back in England restoring the manor he inherited. Issy was running a theater company and its existence was threatened due to the lack of funds. And then they were reunited in a most bizarre way. Oh what a reunion! Gio literally rescued her from a disastrous situation. When he saw her scantly dressed, he thought she was a stripper and everything in the room sizzled! Then he kissed her and offered her money because he misunderstood her profession. However, feeling proud, Issy parted with angry words exchanged with Geo.

However, when she realized there were no other options available and only one way to save her theater company, she went to ask Gio for financial assistance and without realizing it, her fate was sealed! What Issy didn’t know was that Gio was worth millions and a very successful architect in Florence, Italy. Gio had a plan and he convinced her she must return to Italy with him to sign the papers which would rescue her theater.

Gio’s plan was to bed Issy because he was so attracted to her and not because of the business arrangement between them. He actually tricked her into returning home with him to his villa. Being with her was amazing and he was determined not to let her go especially after they made love. As much as Issy didn’t want to admit it, she was excited because like Gio she wanted the passion and sincerely believed she could survive it while keeping her heart intact. Wrong on all counts!

The passion was overwhelming for both of them and Issy drove him crazy with all of her questions about his past and her determination to get the answers. His past was just that, the past and he didn’t want to let her in, he only wanted to make love to her and keep her there with him. Days flew by and a chain of events happened that were powerfully overwhelming for them both which involved his Italian family who wanted to get to know him and be a part of his life. Gio resisted and Issy insisted and they went to a family gathering which was extremely hard for him. And then everything came tumbling out, his relationship with his parents, everything because this stubborn woman wouldn’t let up. Then she made the mistake of telling Gio she loved him. However, he couldn’t return that love, words were exchanged and she returned home to England.

Would Gio and Issy get their second chance? Not until Gio realized that Issy who had always been there for him, loved him with such a strength and she filled all of the “empty spaces” that had been in his life. Unfinished Business with the Duke was a beautifully crafted and extremely enjoyable romance about love, acceptance, healing of the heart and second chances.

Behind the book: First Love, second chances!

Book Descripion:

Long ago Issy Helligan lost her virginity to gorgeous aristocratic rebel Giovanni Hamilton. Then he left without a backward glance and Issy was heartbroken.…

Now, years later, she's doing just fine. Well, perhaps performing singagrams is not her first-choice career, but needs must. But now who should be there to bear witness to her humiliation? Gio Hamilton, now a duke and more gorgeous than ever. He steps into the fray, rescues her, ravishes her senseless and offers to solve all her money worries. There'll be no "forever" with this guy, so is he too good to be true…or simply too delicious to refuse?

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

MAJESTY, MISTRESS....MISSING HEIR - Caitlin Crews



Majesty, Mistress……Missing Heir was an extremely enjoyable romance to read by author Caitlin Crews. However, it was also one of the most emotional romances I’ve also read. In fact, I still have a lump my throat. It was a royal roller coaster romance, one you will definitely not want to miss!

Sheikh Tariq was now the King of Al-Nur and had once been a playboy living in London. Now as king of this desert country he was expected to marry and produce an heir. However, in order to move forward with his life he must get the woman he left five years earlier out of mind. Jessa Heath! What this proud, sexy and extremely handsome king did not know was he had fathered a child, a son.

Jessa had finally come to terms with everything that had happened after her lover had abruptly left her pregnant and alone without a word when he had to return to his country as its ruler. She did not have the opportunity to tell him five years earlier that she was pregnant. He as well, did not say goodbye because she had gone away for a few days when he was called home. Alone, with no job only her older sister and brother-in-law, Jessa had a lovely baby boy which in the end she gave up for adoption because emotionally she wasn’t able to raise him. Now, after five years of no communication who should return on her doorstep but the very man who broke her heart, the very man she hadn’t realized was a billionaire and royal sheikh until he abruptly left and she read the headlines. Why she wondered was he now here in England and demanding to see her? It was to have one more night with her to get her out of his system?

As soon as one learns how they met, how hot their chemistry was, how emotional their relationship was five years earlier plus the fact that Jessa was keeping horrible secrets from Tariq I knew this was going to be an emotional mess and in the end they would both get hurt. Emotional doesn’t even begin to describe this “second chance” romance and I warn you to have a box of tissues handy because you’ll need it.

After angry words, tension and more, Tariq finally talked Jessa into meeting him for dinner. However, when he sent a car for her, she wasn’t aware that dinner would not be in York, it would be in Paris. The sensual tension was like a powder keg ready to explode. However, Jessa knew she was done for and decided to take charge and the upper hand in their one night of wild passion. It was obvious one night wouldn’t be enough and then Tariq saw the stretch marks on Jessa and knew she had lied to him, had deceived him. However, he was not without blame and it all came tumbling out with one exception. Jessa was keeping the secret of who had adopted her son, because she knew who they were. However, she loved her son and would do anything to protect that secret.

Days, weeks go by as they spend time together in Paris, wonderful and passionate time together and then the bomb was dropped when Tariq realized who had adopted his son and he demanded to see him. All I can say was personally I drenched the pages of this book with my tears. I ached for his loss, for Tariq’s pain as well as for Jessa because it was so very obvious they realized they loved each other. They had both lost their parents at an early age and especially for Tariq family would mean everything. I agonized for this couple and wondered how they would survive this mess that had been created by both of them due to the choices they had both made.

Majesty, Mistress…Missing Heir was a compelling story about the battle waged between passion, reason, desire and love. For me Tariq is one hero I will long remember.


Behind the book:

Caitlin talks about her book at I(Heart)Presents

Book Description:

Sheikh Tariq bin Khalid Al-Nur is as treacherous and formidable as the desert land he wants to rule. But he cannot take the throne of his country until he marries. Why, then, has he not wed? Tariq cannot rid his dreams of ordinary but bewitching Jessa Heath!

Jessa knows she and Tariq have unfinished business. What if she were to take control and allow herself the one night he's offering to put their passion to rest? But Jessa is treading dangerous ground! It would only take that night to reveal the secret she has so desperately kept hidden….

MAHARAJA'S MISTRESS - Susan Stephens



Stunning! The Maharaja’s Mistress was a sensual and exotic journey written brilliantly by the talented Susan Stephens.

A hot playboy royal and a spirited young Mia who had a crush as a teenager on her brother’s best friend the future ruler of Ramprakesh. This sexy and handsome Ram also had a secret he had kept from Mia, two secrets in fact. Now it seemed that the Maharaja might need Mia because the Monte Carlo race he’d entered required two racers, one to drive and one to interpret the road. His second had to drop out at the last minute. When Mia read the headlines that Ram was in Monte Carlo, this was her chance to see him again and to race with him. However, how would he react and feel when he saw her since her accident?

Like Ram, Mia had a secret, one that had changed her life because she was recovering from an accident which had blinded one eye and left scars. She had begged her family not to tell anyone, especially Ram. However, now she would be meeting with him to discuss the race as he had accepted her invitation to race with him. He was shocked to find her in Monte Carlo and in her present state but he didn’t let on, he treated her as if her scars and the patch she wore over her eye didn’t matter. They had an excellent race but were disqualified but celebrated anyway and ended up on his royal yacht and oh what a floating palace it was, an extremely elaborate one in which Ram did his personal business as well as business for his country. However, it was time for him to return home and rule his people properly. He also wanted to spend time with Mia, time they had both been denied and he wanted to show her his country. Why I wondered, why after all of this time? And then their passion, it literally exploded off of the pages!

Mia had never made life easy for Ram and he was tired of being bored. He remember long ago when he had to say good-bye to her because of an arranged marriage, his secret with the exception that he hadn’t keep from his best friend, Mia’s brother. However, when Mia asked to board his yacht and he finally had her where he wanted her, in his arms, there was a change in plans and he sailed them both out to sea. He had definite plans for Mia, plans I didn’t believe he even realized. Yes he wanted to help her heal, get her independence back, have her resume her interior design, have her in his bed. Talk about a sensual journey on the high seas. It was right out of the Karma Sumatra, I promise. I also had to wonder because it was obvious that Mia had never stopped loving Ram, would she get her heart broken?

Their journey to and arrival in Ramprakesh was magical. The way the author described the country, the people, the scents, and landscape, I felt I was there right along with them. However, Ram changed immediately upon their arrival. Yes Mia wanted to be by his side and she had accepted an opportunity to bid on decorating his new home and refurbishing the ancient palace into something his people could enjoy. But their moods were all over the place. Ram couldn’t get enough of Mia and then she learned one of his secrets, about his arranged marriage and how it had gone wrong. Tension you could cut with a knife both emotional and sensual and a battle that had the possibility of hurting Mia.

Maharaja’s Mistress was not only a romance about old friends, it was a journey of lovers and two people from different cultures. Honestly, I was a skeptic about Susan’s endeavor of writing this romance. I love reading the sheikh genre and realized the popularity of Bollywood but a Maharaja? All I can say, Ram was up against a feisty and spunky young woman, a woman with determination and so full of love. And I promise you’ll melt when Ram’s second secret is revealed, he had always loved her. Thank you Susan Stephens for this most romantic love story and one of second chances with happy endings!

Back Blurb:

Live life in the fast lane with the playboy Maharaja!

Monte Carlo is abuzz with news that Ram Varindha – young, hot and royal – is without a co-driver for the biggest rally event of the year! It might have been years since she last saw him – but Mia leaps at the chance to get up close with the Maharaja!

With time to spare before he takes on more serious royal duties, bedding the beauty is top of Ram’s list. But Mia has long known Ram’s reputation. Is she just in for the hottest few nights of her life…or could her dream of finally taming his playboy ways become reality?



Behind the book:

Susan's discussions at RomCon

From Susan Writing Diary

Monday, November 01, 2010

ZOE’S LESSONS (UK) ZOE AND THE TORMENTED TYCOON (Balfour Legacy) – Kate Hewitt


Author Kate Hewitt has written an incredible addition to The Balfour Legacy series with Zoe's Lesson, and what a lesson Zoe learned.

Shocking didn't even describe the Balfour Charity ball when Zoe's twin sisters discovered a secret, that their sister Zoe wasn't a Balfour and  their mother had an affair because her journal had been found. Even though Oscar Balfour had suspected Zoe wasn't his, he loved her like his own. When the gossip magazines got hold of the information Zoe was devastated and at her father's suggestion she went to New York to seek out her father, only to be turned away again.

Zoe was known for her poor grades in school and for being a spoiled little rich girl with no ambitions and her love of partying. Now she was on her own in New York staying at the Balfour apartment and had just been rejected by the man she was sure was her father. Facing reality was not in Zoe's vocabulary as she been running for most of her life. Being in this glitzy city she met up with friends at a gallery exhibition and charity party and that's when she met Max Monroe, one of the events supporters.

And then Zoe spotted a tall, dark and handsome man leaning up against a pillar, looking bored. There was something about him that drew her to him, especially after being reminded by an old classmate about her family scandal and Zoe was prepared to have a good time that evening. However, what she didn't know about this man was that he had a sight problem and had been diagnosed recently and would eventually become blind. She could feel something that drew her to him and she ended up leaving with Max, something she didn't normally do, but life for Zoe had not proved be to be normal. Especially when learning the man she so dearly loved all of her twenty six years was not her father. She felt reckless and ended staying the night with Max, making love, actually feeling something for him, only to be rejected the next morning and sent away.

Was Max crazy? He actually felt something he didn't normally feel tenderness, warmth while making love to Zoe. However, because of his loss of sight, because he knew he could never be able to have a relationship with a woman because someday he would be blind, better to end it now and send her away. However, life has away of playing tricks on people and it sure hit the mark when weeks later Zoe realized she was pregnant with Max's baby. Talk about a shock, especially for Max. As for Zoe, she was determined to have this child and make sure he or she knew their father so she told Max.

Zoe was tired of rejection especially by the press, her new found father and Max. She was determined to be useful, determined to raise and love her child with or without Max. However, when Max finally came to terms with becoming a father, hearing the babies heart beat, and wanting to celebrate it gave Zoe hope. Then he invited Zoe to spend sometime with him in the Hampton's with days spent in frustration for both of them with a roller coaster ending!

Their getting to know each other was painful to read because I just knew Zoe was going to fall hard for Max and that doesn't even describe it! As for Max, I could feel his pain so much more because he knew he would never measure up because one day his life would be thrown into darkness. It was hard to feel pity for this stubborn man, who harbored some secrets as to why he was afraid to be blind and I also wondered if Zoe would ever learn the truth and be able to accept it? Her father's parting words when she left England were "you're a lot stronger than you realize, Zoe." And those words proved to be right.

In anger they parted even though they loved each other. Talk about an emotional scene on the beach when harsh words were exchanged and the truth revealed. However, Kate Hewitt's character Zoe after a lot of soul searching grew up and became that strong young woman. Strong enough to leave the man she loved and return home to England and the Balfour family she loved. On her own and with a new determination to make something of herself, to become a mother and guide her child not to make the same mistakes she had, I loved her strength of character and was sure in the end, she would get that happy ending.

As for Max it took him a little longer because he had a lot of baggage to wade through, his past, the guilt and what his future would hold being blind. However, their love for each other won and Zoe and Max got their happy ending with both of them in the process, learning many "lessons".

Book Description:

When blue blood turns bad...

Illegitimacy scandal rocks Balfour legacy. Last night there was only one place to see and be seen at - the Balfour Charity Ball. But despite the glitz and the glamour, all was not as it seemed. Behind the scenes, Olivia Balfour and her scandalous twin Bella were locked in a battle over a shocking discovery - their late mother, socialite Alexandra Balfour, had conceived their sister Zoe during an illicit affair! The beautiful Balfour twins were witnessed in the midst of a cat-fight...Were they ever going to tell their little sister, girl-about-town Zoe, the devastating revelation...? There is no Balfour blood running through Zoe Balfour's veins!

The Balfour name might be synonymous with glamour and style. But this is the second illegitimate family member to be outed in as many months. It seems this dynasty is rotten to its core. Now Balfour is just a by-word for disgrace and scandal! Such behavior at this commemorative ball can only lead us to conclude that the Balfour twins are following in their mother's distinctly uncertain footsteps. Is it too late to stop the rot? We challenge Oscar Balfour, the proud patriarch of this crumbling family: wake up and smell the scandal!


Kate Hewitt talks about Zoe and Max at I(Heart)Presents
 

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