April 29, 2013

Review: Also Known As by Robin Benway

I bought this book on an impulse after reading a couple of favorable reviews. I’m surprised I actually managed to read it, because as much as I’m a fan of impulse buys, I don’t usually read YA stories that sound, well, so juvenile. I’m even more surprised by how much I enjoyed it.

Maggie is a 16-year-old spy who, along with her parents, works for a secret organization in charge of stopping criminals. As a talented safe-cracker, her job always involves waiting until her parents are done so she can come in, open the safe and get out. But when their latest target takes them to New York, she becomes the person in charge of the latest assignment: befriending the teenage son of the magazine editor who’s about to expose the entire organization.

In order to do so, Maggie enrolls in a prestigious private Manhattan high school; something that seems quite easy at first. Yet once there, she realizes that she lacks the social skills to pass as a regular teenager and that being normal might be the most difficult assignment to date. Worse, the guy she has to befriend (and ultimately betray) is really cute, and the lonely girl she meets on the first day makes her long for friendship and normalcy.

April 23, 2013

A Hiatus, a New Post, and a Picture of My Cat’s Ass

Say hello to our very own LOLcat.
Looks familiar? Yes he does.

Once again life gets in the way of blogging. Oh, life, don’t you know that I have books to read and review?

She doesn’t.

That's why I’m putting the blog on hold until next week, when (hopefully) I’ll be back with the not-so-regularly scheduled reviews.

I know you will miss me, so I won’t blame you if you ugly-cry.

In the meantime, I have a new post over at Heroes & Heartbreakers that you can read while waiting for my return.

April 16, 2013

Review: After Hours by Cara McKenna

Source: a review copy was provided by the publisher through NetGalley

I think this is the first time I review one of Cara McKenna’s book, but it’s certainly not the first time I read one. And it was about time I told you about this fantastic author. If you like Erotic Romance and Erotica, you should be reading McKenna’s books. She pushes boundaries, deals with realistic characters and situations, and writes about a variety of relationships and sex.

In After Hours we meet Erin. Circumstances forced her into a caregiver position, and she took that experience and ended up becoming a nurse. When her sister gets in trouble, she is, once again, forced into the position of having to take care of someone. So she moves to a new town and gets a job at the local psychiatric hospital where she meets Kelly, one of the handlers.

April 14, 2013

Winner! Thank You for Riding by Meg Maguire

As usual, thanks to everyone who took the time to comment and enter the giveaway, and especial thanks to Meg for visiting the blog and making the giveaway possible.

Thew winner is: Jena Briars

Congratulations, Jena! Check you email.

April 11, 2013

Review: Love Irresistibly by Julie James

Source: a review copy was provided by the author and publisher through NetGalley.

The first Julie James book I read was Practice Makes Perfect, and that experience was as close to love at first sight as it gets. Ever since then, I’ve been a fan of Ms. James’ books, and each new release has been anxiously awaited. There have been some bumps in the road, but I continue to thoroughly enjoy her books.

Brooke Parker is the general counsel of a company that owns restaurants. U.S. Assistant Attorney Cade Morgan wants to use one of those restaurants to catch a dirty politician. He asks for her help, they catch the guy and they start a relationship. Sounds like I just spoiled the whole thing, right? Wrong! The catching of the bad guy is nothing but an elaborate meet-cute. Despite what the blurb says, this book is a straight Contemporary Romance, and there’s really no suspense subplot. Something I really appreciated.

April 10, 2013

Interview & Giveaway: Meg Maguire

Credit: Florin Gorgan

Today, one of my favorite authors, Meg Maguire, is joining us to answer some questions about her books, the Strangers on a Train Blog collection and the Romance genre. Enjoy!

Hi, Meg! Welcome to Romance Around the Corner.

First, tell us a bit about yourself and your work.

MM: Well, I write contemporary romance—generally quite steamy—and my evil conjoined twin, Cara McKenna, writes erotic romance and straight-up erotica. We live just north of Boston with a bearded man who enjoys building bicycles.

Your backlist is rich and prolific; you have written full-length novels, novellas and short stories, as well as Romance and (as Cara McKenna) Erotic Romance. Do you have a preferred genre or format? What are the differences between writing a full-length novel and a novella or short story?
This is Meg.

MM: I wouldn’t say I have true preferences, no… I get restless and tend to flit around from book to book, switching between romance and erotica, between lengths, between first- and third-person, between lighthearted fare and more gritty stuff, urban settings and isolated ones. I have to rely on my voice to lend my body of work any semblance of consistency—everything else is up for grabs! But writing in two different genres has been good for me. Switching gears means I don’t get bored.

April 3, 2013

Review: Big Boy by Ruthie Knox

Note: I won the Strangers on a Train series in a giveaway, so the book was free, but this wasn't a review request. The other novellas are Thank You for Riding by Meg Maguire, Ticket Home by Serena Bell, Back on Track by Donna Cummings and Tight Quarters by Samantha Hunter.

I read this short novella in one sitting, and when I was done, I went back and read it again. First time I've ever done that. Big Boy wasn't just good in terms of storytelling and overall quality; it also hit all the right buttons and resonated with me as a reader in general and for personal reasons in particular.

Mandy is one of those heroines who inherited an orphan. She loves the toddler, but the situation isn't perfect, and it sure as hell isn't happy. Her life turned into the chaos that comes with a small child. There’s also pain, grief and loneliness. Motherhood wasn't something she wanted and she has to deal with frustration, fear and feelings of inadequacy.

April 2, 2013

Review: Once Tempted by Laura Moore

Source: a review copy was provided by the publisher through NetGalley.

Have I told you how much I like Ms. Moore’s books? Yes I have! But I will say it again, because for some reason she’s a bit of a hidden gem and I want to help spread the word. If you like Contemporary Romance, small-town stories and horses, then you should be reading her books right now.

Our heroine, Tess, is a recent widow who had a very traumatic experience with her husband and decided to start anew. A friend encourages her to pick a random spot on the map and that’s how she ends up in a ranch in California, where she’s greeted with open arms by everyone but the owners’ son, Ward.

The thing is that Ward is equal parts attracted and wary of Tess. But once he realizes the attraction is there to stay, he decides to pursue her. Slowly but surely they fall in love, but Tess has secrets, so will they come back to haunt her? Of course they will!

April 1, 2013

Review: Along Came Trouble by Ruthie Knox

Source: a review copy was provided by the publisher through NetGalley.

I’ve been gushing about Ms. Knox’s books for the past year, and as I keep saying, I think she has one of the best and freshest voices in Contemporary Romance. But all good things must come to an end (or in this case, a small bump in the road) so today’s review won’t be a gushing one.

Along Came Trouble is the first full-length book in the new Camelot series (there’s a prequel novella, but each story stands alone well). Ellen is a single mother whose only wish is peace and tranquility. But when her famous, Justin Timberlake-ish brother has an affair with her pregnant next-door neighbor, the paparazzi invade her street and put an end to her peace and tranquility. That’s when her brother hires Caleb Clark’s security firm to provide protection to Ellen and the neighbor. Needless to say, Ellen disapproves.
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FTC Disclaimer

The books reviewed here were purchased by us. If the book was provided by the author or publisher for review, it will be noted on the post. We do not get any type of monetary compensation from publishers or authors.