JoRead

Writers write. Storytellers feed your imagination. My imagination has a hunger that can't be satiated.

Lord of Secrets (Rogues to Riches #5) by Erica Ridley

Lord of Secrets - Erica Ridley

Lord of Secrets - Erica Ridley 

Lord of Secrets - Erica Ridley 

~3.5 stars ~

As an heir to a barony, Heath knows he must choose the right woman to marry. She’ll have to be a proper lady of a good family, and will never, ever give motive for scandal or gossip. So what if he’s not in love with the lady, right?

Heath in a way reminded of Mr. Darcy although not as brooding or surly. Honor bound to a fault, his first priority was always his family and his duty to the title. As the problem-solver of the ton, he considered his responsibility to keep his peers out of the gossip columns and pursue those that dared taint their “good” name. This attitude of him grated me because how could anyone be so honorable yet try to cover up other people’s mistakes. To me that was hypocritical. Fortunately, love outweighed any preconceived notions of honor and he found his true calling.
Nora had a secret of her own that if uncovered it could not only ruin her but also ruin her chances at love. I thought she was sweet, smart, and witty however I could totally see why she didn’t think highly of herself. It made me a happy reader when Heath saw past all of her shortcomings and focused on what mattered most. Their romance was engaging and slow-burning with the right amount of tension which made it feel believable.

Although there weren’t any tug-at-your-heart moments it was definitely enjoyable and a good continuation to the series. I recommend this series to anyone that likes endearing yet complex characters, funny moments, and good romance. 

Thanks to Negalley for providing a copy of this story for review.

ARC review: The Risk of Rogues (The Sinful Suitors, #5.5) by Sabrina Jeffries

The Risk of Rogues - Sabrina Jeffries

The Risk of Rogues - Sabrina Jeffries 

Release date: July 2nd, 2018

 

Last installment in the series, this second chance story was entertaining and sweet. Anne and Hart were young and very much in love when they decided to take the next step. Unfortunately life happened and they had to part ways before that came to fruition. Now that they’ve met again and Anne’s circumstances are different, it’s up to Hart to prove to her he’s the man she deserves and not just the woman he needs. 
To tell the truth, I wasn’t expecting such a short read as the last of the series but even so it was still enjoyable. I particularly liked the fact that both Anne and Hart were well-defined characters and I as a reader was able to connect with them and understand their struggles. Although more than struggles it was a tangle of misunderstandings and misinformation that was preventing them to reach their HEA. I don’t want to give anything away but I had an issue with Hart though. In his attempt to regain Anne’s love, he was willing to trap her into marriage by seducing her. That might be something we see a lot in historicals because it actually tended to happen quite often but it still sounds wrong in my book, historical or not. I know, I know, I’m too modern for my own good but that’s the way I prefer my stories, or not, as is the case here. Overall a good read that most people will be able to tackle in one evening. 
As a side note, that cover is so pretty and I think it’s the perfection depiction of our heroine. I just loved it! 

**I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher**

Audiobook review: Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher, narrated by author.

Wishful Drinking - Carrie Fisher

Wishful Drinking - Carrie Fisher 

 

I'm not much of a fan of memoirs or autobiographies but you know, Carrie Fisher. Parts melodramatic, parts hysterical. Overall it was an ok way to past the time. 

ARC review: An Affair with a Spare (The Survivors #3) by Shana Galen

An Affair with a Spare - Shana Galen

An Affair with a Spare - Shana Galen 

Release date: July 3rd, 2018

 

This third installment in the Survivors series showcases the Seducer. Rafe Beaumont’s role in Lt. Colonel Draven’s regiment in the war was nothing like the other soldiers'. Just as dangerous, but not quite as heroic, at least not in his eyes. Now that the war is over and everyone is trying to live a more or less tranquil life, Rafe feels the chance to prove himself as a true hero is still yet to come. However when Draven pretty much orders him to reprise the role of the Seducer, he assumes he’s never going to have that chance. Not quite so my dear Rafe. 

Rafe was such an endearing, amusing character. His easygoing attitude and somewhat sad past was easy to understand. It was pretty obvious why all the women wanted a piece of the beefcake that was Rafe. Collette on the other hand was not as well-defined. She was too innocent to be doing what she was set out to do and I honestly didn’t understand why anyone would consider her for that kind of work. Although when it came to Rafe she was pretty set on what she wanted from him and that sort of redeemed her in my eyes. 

The Survivors that we’ve met in past books make a reappearance here but don't play quite the important a role I would have liked. I didn’t get why Rafe didn’t enlist the help of his friends in a more proactive way in order to achieve his goals. It just seems it would have made his life much easier. Another thing I didn’t enjoy much was the fact that it felt the book was two stories in one. The way it started and the way it changed course in the middle didn’t mesh well. In the end Rafe gets to prove his worth not only to his Lieutenant but also to the woman he loved (in a most romantic way) so I was happy by the time I finished. 

Overall a good read but I think Ewan’s story (first book, Third Son’s a Charm) is still my favorite. 

**I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher**

It's All About the Duke (The Rakes of St. James #3) by Amelia Grey

It's All About The Duke - Amelia Grey

To begin I’ll say this, I know there are people out there that will enjoy this book. I know there are people that will overlook lots of description, lengthy conversations, and characters that feel rather flat in lieu of a good story line. As for me, I don’t think I’ll read another book by this author.


My main problem with the story was that the pace was extremely slow. Four chapters in and the first scene was still going on. Four chapters of the same! The setting wasn’t too bad but I’m not a person that enjoys descriptive detail of every single nuance. Again, others may, I don’t. 


As far as the characters, perhaps because the pace was so slow I didn’t feel the chemistry between Rath (the Duke of Rathburne) and Marlena. I also found her annoying and not as smart as she was supposed to be. The main storyline revolved around some letters that the Rakes of St. James sent to a few unsuspecting debutantes, causing them to lose all marital prospects. One of the affected ladies was Marlena’s friend so she decided to get back at the rakes by going after them anonymously through her scandal sheet. My issue with that was that she pretty much set out to do the very thing she was upset about to begin with. I just couldn’t reconcile the idea of a smart and compassionate woman being gossipy and having no regards for all the people she was affecting with her actions. It just didn’t make sense and I didn’t think age was a free-pass to act that way (she was “young” when she started the scandal sheets). )As far as Rath, I though he took things in stride, especially when he found out Marlena’s secret, but other than that I found his rakish ways lackluster. 


I’m sitting here wondering if I would have enjoyed this book better if it hadn’t been redundant but as it is, all I can say the idea was there but it never really panned out, at least not for me. 

Review copy provided by Netgalley. This is my honest opinion and in no way influenced by anyone.
 

THE PRINCE (Devil's Duke #4) by Katharine Ashe

The Prince (Devil's Duke) - Katharine Ashe

Generally speaking, I usually pass on books where a woman disguises herself as a man in order to achieve her goals because most of the time they are so fantastically far-fetched that I end up with headaches from rolling my eyes in disbelief so much. Not here, not with Libby. She was such a unique woman to begin with that pretending to be anything but a woman of the ton wasn’t hard to believe. She was both endearing and sensual and her oddities make her a refreshing, different character, setting her apart from other bluestockings. As a matter of fact, Libby is on a whole other level of heroine archetype all by herself. 
Ziyaeddin became captivated by Elizabeth when they first met so when she asked for his help he knew there would be trouble ahead. In spite of their obvious attraction, he tries to keep their relationship as distant as possible, not only because he knows his future is yet to be determined but because he knows of her dreams and doesn’t want to be in the way of them (if that’s not sexy I don’t know what is.) All that sexual tension was just as frustrating for the characters as it was for me as a reader! Yet what I loved the most about his character was that his always cool demeanor was able to reel Libby’s mind back in from the chaos it sometimes was proving once more that a man doesn’t have to be dominant or possessive to be the perfect hero. 

Secondary characters were a true delight. They all added that perfect touch of variety to keep the story moving, and the fact that both Libby and Ziyaeddin had overcome many of their initial fears made the story even more memorable. And that epilogue! I don’t think I’ve ever read one full of so many emotions and feelings. With a heart-melting, enthralling storyline; complex and larger-than-life characters; and the perfect history backdrop this book is for sure an instant re-read. 

 

**I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.**

 

The Prince (Devil's Duke) - Katharine Ashe 

 

Get your copy here: 
Amazon https://amzn.to/2ryyvRM 
B&N http://bit.ly/2vJMgSS
iBooks http://apple.co/2wDmPkF
Indiebound http://bit.ly/2E7r9d4
Kobo http://bit.ly/2wF2tpr
More www.katharineashe.com/The-Prince

What is it?!

Bad Bachelor - Stefanie London

So I'm a few chapters in of Bad Bachelor and for some reason, and although I like where the story is going so far, something is rubbing me the wrong way. I cannot point my finger on what exactly it is but there is something that keeps me from loving it. It's obviously important because I'm writing about it and yet...

 

 

Ugh! It's driving me nuts not being able to identify the real issue I'm having with it! 

 

 

 

Tiger Striped (Shifters Unbound #11.5) by Jennifer Ashley

Tiger Striped -  Jennifer Ashley

Tiger Striped - Jennifer Ashley 

 

I love coming back to this world! Tiger and Carly had their own full-length novel in Tiger Magic and this is just a snippet of what life has been like for Tiger. When Tiger receives a distress call from heaven-knows-where, he and Carly (and the always fun Connor Morrisey) rush to help. 
In just a few pages we get to enjoy Carly and Tiger’s strong love bond at work, a high-speed chase, human-shifter interaction, and of course the promise of more to come. And that twist at the end was just perfect! I totally recommend it whether you’re new to the series or a long-time fan.

Innocent Target (Redemption Harbor #4) by Katie Reus

Innocent Target - Katie Reus

Innocent Target - Katie Reus 

 

Hadley has just moved to Redemption Harbor. She’s just getting to know her wealthy father and brother and although she loves them to death, they can be a little overprotective at times. Good thing too because now that someone is threatening her, her brother Brooks and the rest of the Redemption Harbor Consulting team will do anything to protect her.

 

Just like the rest of the series, this book packs a fast-paced, full of action, edge-of-your-seat plot that was hard to put down. The first chapter was both shocking and amazing and it was everything I want in a romantic suspense. It pulled me right in and from that moment I knew this was going to be a terrific story.

Hadley and Axel relationship is sweet yet it doesn’t lack passion. Their attraction is palpable from the instance they meet and doesn’t falter, even when she discovers his true identity.

 

Romance and suspense aside, the best part of the story was the people protecting Hadly, specially Skye, whom we got to meet in the first book in the series. She is a bad-a$$ woman through and through and one of my favorite characters ever. If the book was great, Sky and his loving husband Colt making a big appearance made it even better.

 

Redemption Harbor series as a whole will leave you wanting more and this book in particular will show you what you’re missing out on if you haven’t started it yet. 

 

** I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher. **

Stealing the Duke's Heart by Shana Galen

Stealing the Duke's Heart - Shana Galen

Stealing the Duke's Heart - Shana Galen 

 

**These novellas were previously published in the anthologies The Dukes of Vauxhall and How to Find a Duke in Ten Days.**

 

How to Steal a Duke 
Dominik and Rosalyn make one of my favorite couples ever. She was graceful, playful, and brave. He was haughty, proper, and much to his chagrin, caring. Together they are the perfect pair. With a hint at gothic, and although it’s only a novella, this story packs plenty: romance, nail-biting situations, and an unexpected twist. It was a nice story that I wish would have been longer! 

Taken by the Duke 
When Henry is attacked by a band of ruffians, the last thing he expected was to come reacquainted with a long lost love. Kate has changed so much since he last saw her however he knows that deep inside she’s still the same girl he knew all those years ago. There were sparks flying for these two from the start. I loved that it’s not your typical “duke” and there was “no damsel in distress.” I thought the ending was kind of abrupt but it was still an enjoyable read. 

Both stories were fun, enjoyable, and quick reads. If you’re looking for a read to pass your morning, this is the one to get. 

~ I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher. ~

Giveaway!

New release: Author interview with Nick Sullivan & 3 "Deep Shadow" Giveaways

Reblogged from BookLikes:

 

Nick Sullivan has spent most of his adult life as an actor in New York City, working in theater, television, film, and audiobooks. After narrating hundreds of books over the last twenty years, he decided to write his own. His newest title Deep Shadow, a first installment in Caribbean Dive Adventures series, has been release in April 2018.

 

Read our interview to get to know the author, and enter the giveaway contests to win a signed paperback or an audiobook copy of Deep Shadow (narrated by the author himself!). 

 

Deep Shadow by Nick Sullivan -THREE GIVEAWAYS

MAY 14 - MAY 30, 2018

Deep Shadow - Nick Sullivan

In the turquoise waters of the Caribbean, something lethal is on the move.

Scuba divers travel from all over the world to visit the little island of Bonaire, with its crystal-clear waters and a host of beautiful marine life. After three years in the “Divers Paradise”, divemaster Boone Fischer thought he’d seen it all; but on a routine afternoon dive, he spots something that will turn his tranquil life upside down.

From the arid shores of the ABC Islands to the tropical jungles of Venezuela—from the ocean depths of the Southern Caribbean, to the lush islands of the Northern Leewards, Deep Shadow takes Boone and the reader on an action-packed adventure filled with danger and suspense.

 

  

 

You are an actor, author and narrator - which of the three do you enjoy doing the most, or identify with? Can you make that choice? 

 
The answer to that really does change day by day... if I'm on stage or doing a shoot on a TV show, I'm in full actor mode... well, that's not true lol. When I shot an episode of "Bull" I had just run a promo for my first book, Zombie Bigfoot. I kept checking my phone for sales every time they turned off the camera lol. Narration is something I love dearly and when I'm in the booth I'm not thinking of anything else. Unless I start getting hungry.
 

After narrating over 400 audiobooks (!!) you made the choice to write your own book! How did that happen? Was there one event that inspired your decision to become a writer as well? 
 
I think the choice to try my hand at writing came in several stages: A. I've narrated so many books and was inspired by great writers (and was also inspired by some bad writing... figuring, well if THAT can get published...)
B. I had dabbled with writing screenplays (Zombie Bigfoot is a novelization of one of mine) and knew I enjoyed that form of writing.
C. I've narrated for some new authors and watched their careers flourish, and learned a few tricks from them as far as writing, marketing, and publishing went.
And D. I've made some great contacts in the book world from my narration work, and it finally struck me that I'd be crazy not to dive in and give it a try. You only live once!

 

What is it like to write your own book when you have read and acted out so many others, most of them probably quite famous - is it intimidating? 
 
Not really. I've read some early works by big names and have learned "everybody has to start somewhere". Every author evolves and I'm no different. Right now, I'm fairly new... but I'm loving every minute of it.
 

Tell us about your books - the first one seems quite different from the second, you've started two different series, isn't that right? 
 
Zombie Bigfoot (Creature Quest Series Book 1) - Nick SullivanYes... the two books are verrrrrrry different. And yet, I think a similar style is present in both. I realize if you want to make money you should establish a brand and stick with it... but I love to read all sorts of books and right now I just want to write whatever speaks to me. I had a blast with "Zombie Bigfoot"... a creature feature with a hefty amount of comedy baked into the pie—"horror", but a lot of action adventure too (like a Crichton novel, or "Jaws"). One reviewer said it reminded them of the action adventure writing of Preston and Child.
 
At the time I was narrating a lot of action adventure for a coupleDeep Shadow - Nick Sullivan  writers and I've been an avid scuba diver for almost as long as I've been narrating audibooks— so when another idea I'd had for a screenplay pushed itself into my brain, I decided to set ZBF's sequel aside and dive in to "Deep Shadow". (But worry not, "Zombie Billionaire" is about a third done). "Deep Shadow" has all sorts of elements I enjoy as a reader and narrator: action, adventure, and suspense in a tropical setting... some colorful characters, multi-dimensional villains, and some pretty good twists!

What are your writing plans? Do you actually have any at this point, right before the release of your second novel, or will you start making plans once it's out? 
 
At the moment I'm focused on making the launch week a success but I'll be back to writing next week. I have a complete storyboard for the ZBF sequel, and a fairly good idea what I'm going to do with the followup to "Deep Shadow". Actually, I'm taking a scuba trip to the island "Deep Shadow" ends on, which is where the sequel will begin. And in August, I'll be taking a writing retreat to Bonaire, where "Deep Shadow" starts! And I'll be narrating and auditioning for TV and film too... one day at a time!
 
 
Do you have any long-term goals as a writer? Maybe a certain number of books you would like to write within a specific amount of time?
 
I wish I could write more quickly, but with so many irons in the fire, it's difficult to say what sort of writing schedule I can expect from myself. I would like to get to where I can write one book in each of these series each year (one every six months) On the other hand... there's that fantasy book that I storyboarded... no!! Gonna stick with these for now!

Who are your favorite authors and genres? Have they influenced you and in what way? 
 
I love fantasy, sci-fi, horror, historical fiction, technothrillers, mystery, suspense, and thrillers. Favorite authors: Carl Hiassen: I narrated one of his books and loved his supremely broad characters.
Stephen King: probably the first "adult" novels I read were his. King's primary inspiration to me is the craft of writing itself—"On Writing" was excellent.  
Patrick Rothfuss: Absolutely loved The Name of the Wind. And I was taken with how he played with time in his narrative. And I'd have to admit that many great television shows and movies have inspired my writing.
 
More than one reviewer has commented that my books read like cinema. One person said of the "Zombie Bigfoot" audiobook: "It's like Netflix for the ear!" I think it was meant as a compliment...

 

Follow Nick Sullivan on BookLikes: http://wyp.booklikes.com

 

Nick Sullivan's book on BookLikes:

Zombie Bigfoot (Creature Quest Series Book 1) - Nick SullivanDeep Shadow - Nick Sullivan

The Soldier's Scoundrel (The Turner Series #1) by Cat Sebastian

The Soldier's Scoundrel - Cat Sebastian

This was my first by the author and it for sure won't be my last. Oliver and Jack were from opposite sides on the social scale and yet they found a way to make it work in a totally believable way. Even though Jack was kind of a jerk at times he was still lovable and charming and oh, so sexy. Definitely an enjoyable, satisfying story. 

Kept by the Viking (Forgotten Sons #1) by Gina Conkle

Kept by the Viking (Forgotten Sons) - Gina Conkle

Kept by the Viking (Forgotten Sons) - Gina Conkle 

 

Release Date: May 14th, 2018

 

Buy Links 

Harlequin: http://bit.ly/2Elt9Sw
Carina Press: http://bit.ly/2jidyHp
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2DgK9GA
B&N: http://bit.ly/2D6HAKe
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2Coojn5
iBooks: https://apple.co/2CYvNcM
GooglePlay: http://bit.ly/2mo0dy3

 

The story takes place in a time when Vikings were settling in and around the Frankish kingdom. The setting felt authentic and real, with lots of interesting facts and vivid descriptions of how people lived at the time. That was a real treat for me since I love historical bits in my romances. 
After being separated from her family, Safira asks the leader of the Forgotten Sons to help her return home, and while Rurik can tell she’s hiding something, he agrees to help her in exchange for the one thing Safira cannot give. 

I love the way Safira was depicted. From the moment they met, she proved to be resourceful and clever in a way Rurik had never before seen in a woman. Her powers of persuasion and perception came in handy at some crucial times, winning the respect of every one.

There was also the political intrigue, that although I can never get into because it’s all too confusing, it was still interesting enough to keep me turning the pages. The romance though was a slow-burn, not because it wasn’t good but because there were too many things against them as a couple. They did find a way to stay together but it sure took them a sweet long time to get there.

**I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.**
 

Duke with Benefits (Studies in Scandal #2) by Manda Collins

Duke with Benefits (Studies in Scandal) - Manda Collins

Second book in the series, this story is centers on Lady Daphne Forsyth, a unique woman trying to find her place in a world that doesn’t seem to understand her, and Dalton Beauchamp, the Duke of Maitland, the man that falls for her. 
The suspense aspect of the story was ok, I mean, it kept me entertained but not to the point that I was unable to put the book down. There were some twists but for the most part they were kind of predictable. 

It’s always interesting to read about characters with unique traits, unfortunately in this case Daphne didn’t hold my interest for long. She was described as someone on the autism spectrum and perhaps for that reason I was hoping to find a more endearing character but instead I got a character with whom I could not connect at all. I was also unable to understand the love between Daphne and Dalton. I think I would have liked it better if they took more time falling in love because to me it just felt forced and even trite at times.

I still plan to read more from this author but in all honesty I don’t think I’ll continue this series. 

** I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher. **

Historical Romance Books for only 99 cents* each!

Books by Shana Galen

 

Bundle of 3 Books
Amz: https://amzn.to/2HLIL4q
iBooks: https://apple.co/2HORSRO
BN: http://bit.ly/2jqCpbV
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2HLusg2

 

 

EARLS JUST WANT TO HAVE FUN
Amz: http://amzn.to/1nBsO1O
BN: http://bit.ly/2IebPkg
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1PHKvDD
Google Play: http://bit.ly/1u8tMlH
iBooks: https://apple.co/2KBuepN

 

 

 

THE LADY'S PROTECTOR by Emma Prince


Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2rkcRBA 
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01F0AYHOY

 

 

MY FIERCE HIGHLANDER by Vonda Sinclair

 

Kindle: https://amzn.to/2Ia8enx

Nook: https://bit.ly/2jxhbJy

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2IitirV

iBooks: https://apple.co/2HWMgRk

Smashwords: https://bit.ly/2wenPgL

 

 

 

Books by Mary Morgan 

All Books in the Order of the Dragon Knights series is 99 cents each. 

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01JPKLFHC/

 

 

 

*Double check price before buying. 

 

The Luck of the Bride (The Cavensham Heiresses #3) by Janna MacGregor

The Luck of the Bride - Janna MacGregor

The Luck of the Bride - Janna MacGregor 

 

his was a fun yet heart-melting story. I felt sad for March from the start. She’d been down on her luck for the longest and even though it shouldn’t have been like this, her family was about to hit rock bottom. The fact that her family stayed afloat for so long was a statement of how smart she was. 
I liked all characters portrayals as they were all defined and complex. I especially liked March’s younger brother, Bennett. His innocence added that dash of humor at the most interesting of times. March and Michael were great as a couple (at least through most of the book and I’ll get to that later.) She was sweet-natured and compassionate, always worrying about her siblings and how she was going to provide for them. Michael was charming and unassuming. It was easy to see why March fell for him. 

I dislike storylines that use unpremeditated secrets as another challenge to overcome. In this case, March and Michael had already made promises to each other but the moment such secret came to light, all promises were forgotten and even more drama was added. In addition, Michael’s attitude got me confused as I didn’t understand what exactly he was waiting for to correct his wrongdoings. 

In short, it was a good story that will have you tearing up as much as inducing a laugh, and if you don’t mind an excessive amount of purple prose then you will definitely enjoy this book.

** I received this book at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher. **
 

Challenge Participant Professional Reader