Tuesday, 28 January 2020

Carter - A.M. Salinger

Carter (Twilight Falls #2)Carter by A.M. Salinger
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the second book in the Twilight Falls series. These are fairly short stories with a hot and heavy romance theme. This series focuses on a group of friends, known as the terrible seven. In the first book, we saw Alex find his 'one' through an arranged marriage. This time we have Carter, an international movies star and Elija, a pastry chef. Carter has a reputation for sleeping with just about every woman he comes across, but what the rest of the world doesn't know is that he is bi. When his sister dies he becomes the sole guardian for his niece. This is the start of a complete life change for Carter and when he meets Elija things change even more.
I liked this story and enjoyed the romance between Carter and Elija. It is a bit instant attraction and things do move very fast, but sometimes that's just what you want and what works.
I wasn't entirely sold on the idea that his career would suffer when he came out as gay, it seemed a bit of a stretch in this day and age, but maybe that's the case, I don't know. Overall I enjoyed it though.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews

Monday, 27 January 2020

With Love From New Orleans - Various

Voyages of the Heart
Review of With Love from New Orleans

Cities around the world have their own charming allure which pulls you in, allowing you to enjoy their secrets. They offer love, passion, laughter, healing, and even heartbreak. The authors have penned these emotions and more into their stories one page at a time. Pack your luggage to join us on our voyage of the heart. Our next destination: New Orleans!

With Love From New Orleans

Romance in the “Big Easy” isn't for the faint of heart. The mystery hidden in the worlds created by VOTH's authors will keep you enthralled in each and every tale. The only promise on this voyage of love is that we’ve sealed each story with a kiss of passion which will entice you to come back for more. Welcome to New Orleans where every page reveals a new secret as we explore the city's round-the-clock appeal.


With Love From New OrleansWith Love From New Orleans by Jade Royal
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

With love from New Orleans

BLOOD MAGIC BARGAIN by Annelise Alexis
I had mixed feelings about this one. Lenny is in trouble and out for a good time before the law catches up with her. After a night of heavy drinking, she finds herself in the hands of a group of wolves. Despite being human she seems to be the mate of pack trouble maker Jules. I enjoyed the building of the story between the two as they worked out how to be together. I also liked the building of the world, which is always difficult in such a short story. The only slight problem was that with it being such a short story, I was left wanting to know a little bit more. What happened after they sorted everything out? I'd also have liked to see a little bit more between them as they got to know one another. Overall, a good read though.

This was a bit of an unusual story. Dani the lead is an escort, she has friends who she works with as a waitress, but they don't know about her other work. This is a short story, so I don't want to give many more details of the plot, for fear of giving the whole story away. I quite enjoyed it in any case.

Oddly enough, this is the third story I've read recently where our two main characters wake up handcuffed to one another and with no idea who each other is and how they got there. This time the two characters in question are the IT expert from paranormal enforcers the grid and a young female vampire. I enjoyed this story and as it was the first that I'd read from this series or by this author, it was a good introduction.

DUPLICITY by Roux Cantrell
This is a short story with a bit of romance and a bit of murder in it. The murder doesn't take part until the later part for the story, although it becomes clear fairly quickly who is likely to be murdered and roughly why. The romance is perhaps the more important part of the story. It was a good read, although there was a little too much telling rather than showing which made it slightly less engaging than it might otherwise have been.

This is a second chance romance, although the two characters only knew each other as teenagers. Even though they were both seventeen when they met and took part in a chess tournament Emile and Serafine have never forgotten about one another. When Serafine returns to New Orleans fifteen years later, she's attacked and beaten up by Emile's father, Emile rescues her and nurses her back to health. Despite the violence, this was quite a sweet love story and I enjoyed reading about what happened to both of them.

BLAME IT ON THE SPRING FLING by Natalie-Nicole Bates
I enjoyed this little story. I usually quite like second chance romances and this one was particularly good. I loved the idea of the hero Drew pretending that he was Lena's love slave because of a love potion, even though it hadn't had any effect on him at all. Great quick read.

SERENDIPITY by Maggie Adams
It's nice to read a romance about a couple who are a bit older than we usually come across. In this case, our hero and heroine are old enough to have grown-up children but certainly more than young enough for some passion and romance. I quite enjoyed this little read.

Sometimes I get a bit sick of the inexperienced woman meets a man who sleeps around storyline. Fortunately, this story is far from that. After her relationship fell apart Misty (Melissa) has been jumping from man to man for a quick hook up. While on holiday in New Orleans, she runs into old friend Liam and things soon heat up and become more interesting between them. I enjoyed this little romance.

Sugar Magnolia is the story of Ellen and Roman. Ellan longs for children and marriage, so much so that she is willing to enter into a fake marriage with a man she thinks is gay, just to be married to someone and have kids. Just before the wedding, she meets Roman, who is all she has ever dreamed of. I liked the way this story played out over six days. Roman was lovely and they both deserved to find what they were looking for.

LOVE BLOOMS by Carrie Humphrey
I've read a few dragon shifter romances, but this one was a little different as the couple dragon Nassir and Child of Gaia Hazel have been together for a long time. She helps to settle the Earth and help nature while he protects her. I enjoyed this short story that had New Orleans magic bringing them together.

DAMNED by Alyssa Drake
This was a little bit of an unusual paranormal romance, as one part of the couple Julien is a ghost. This doesn't stop him from falling for Violet, who has recently had her heartbroken. It was a fun read with an interesting storyline. I enjoyed this unusual romance.

HEALING YOU by Autumn Sand
I'm not sure what I would do if my marriage broke down and my children blamed me. But that's what happens in this story to Sian. Left alone in a strange city, she stumbles across a musician who tells her of a place he used to play before the owner Just's wife was murdered. Sian and Just are both damaged, but together they can help one another heal and find happiness. I liked this story of making the choices that work for you and help you to become the people you are meant to be. The love aspect of this story was quite sweet too.

HER REVENGE by Ashlee Shades
This is an unusual 'love' story, as most of the action takes place before the final couple gets together. The story starts with Victoria being very much in love with her husband Ayden. She discovers that he has been unfaithful to her and decides to take her revenge. This was a very short story and quite different from the others in the book so far. An interesting change.

This was quite a strange one, not a love story as such, or at least not a falling in love story. I don't know if this is part of a bigger series or something, but it seemed like I was missing something somewhere along the lines. Even so, it was an interesting tale and well written.

BACCARA by Tamsen Schultz
This was the author and story that I originally got this collection for. I've read a few of her Windsor series and although this isn't part of the same series, it is similar in some ways. What I enjoy about this story is that it is both a crime story and a romance. It isn't that one part of the story takes the lead and the other part is just an add on. Both parts also work well together. I enjoyed this one.

FOUND YOU by Maria Vickers
Found you is a m/m romance between Jordan and Archer. It is a side story to Unbreak Me, but I haven't read that and it didn't matter. I enjoyed this romance. Archer is a bit all over the place when we meet him, but the two work well as a couple.

This one wasn't for me. I'm not sure what was going on, to be honest. It said that it was set in the early 1800s but apart from the odd word (one in every few pages) there was nothing to suggest that, the main female character was even called Brandi. I think it might be part of a wider series or something, but it did nothing for me.

ENEMY MINE by Nia Farrell
This story has the highest heat level of any of the books so far, I think that there can be only one or two to go, so suspect that it might be the hottest one here. This is an enemies to lovers story in the most real sense of the term. Henry and Ophelia aren't personal enemies, but as they are on different sides in the American civil war, they are enemies in a bigger sense. I enjoyed this story, it was a bit of a different style to many historical romances.

This story is a continuation of one that appeared in the With Love from London collection (which I haven't read) and it doesn't finish in this book but will be completed in the next one. It would have been nice to see a conclusion to this little story but to be honest, I didn't mind too much. It was quite an enjoyable story but I would like to find out what happens with Raphael and Anise.

ONLY FOOLS WALK FREE by Sandra R. Neeley
This is a supernatural romance story. Sam's soul has been trapped in a crypt after he was attacked by his lover's father and he made a deal to keep her safe before he died. As the years pass he watches over her until she is an old woman. Years later they get a second chance. This was quite an unusual romance all about soul mates, quite enjoyable.

View all my reviews

Wrong Bed, Right Man - Rebecca Brooks

Wrong Bed, Right ManWrong Bed, Right Man by Rebecca Brooks
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Opposites attract is always fun in a romance novel. When it comes to Rose and Owen, they may start out seeming to be complete opposites, but as the story progresses, it becomes clear that they actually have far more in common than it first appears.
Rose has recently broken up with her fiance, who she walked in on the throws of passion with another woman. She still works for his father's company and sees him daily. When she goes to collect her furniture from their flat, she finds another man asleep in her bed. Although he's really not at all the type of man that she normally goes for, she can't help but be attracted to him.
Rose's job is in direct competition with Owen's. I enjoyed reading about how they tried to find a way through their differences without actually having to give up their jobs. I don't really enjoy books where someone has to change. Although the characters do make changes, it's more to do with the way that they think and both Rose and Owen realise that they can't influence the way that someone else behaves and the way that they feel and think is down to them.
Overall this was a good read and satisfying romance.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews

Thursday, 23 January 2020

Before she was Helen - Caroline B. Cooney

Before She Was HelenBefore She Was Helen by Caroline B. Cooney
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When this book starts, you could be forgiven for thinking that it's a light-hearted and somewhat fluffy mystery story. You would be wrong. There is a mystery here, in fact, more than one, there's also a cast of interesting characters who all live in some sort of sheltered housing. But that's not all that's going on.
I have to admit that the story of Clemmie's life, of what happened to her before she became Helen is really quite sad. In much the same way that the retirement village gives the impression that all is nice and happy but that there's much more below the surface, the same can be said for her past. While everyone in the 50's was giving the illusion that all was safe and happy, for some, such as Clemmie, it was far from the case.
I really enjoyed this book, both the story of what had been before and what was going on now for Clemmie. It was left so that there could well be a follow on, there's plenty for her still to answer, but whether that will be addressed in a future book or we just assume that it was all forgotten about and swept under the carpet once more, I don't know.
Like many reviewers, I had read some of Caroline B. Cooney's books in my early teens. I think that was one of the reasons that I decided to read this one, but I don't know if you should necessarily go into it expecting similar, this is very much for an older reader. Either way, I really enjoyed it.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, 21 January 2020

If Ever I Fall - Elle Wright

If Ever I FallIf Ever I Fall by Elle Wright
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the second book in the letter club series. Although the stories are linked by the use of the anonymous letter writing club, the characters, so far at least, have been part of the same family. There was slightly less old fashioned letter writing in this book, but that didn't really matter as the story was good and as much as I like the idea of people sending post to one another all in the name of romance, this was still a great story.
We met Sophia in Nothing Else But You, as she is the younger sister of the hero of that book Gio. Gio and Nat (the couple from book one) appear in this book, but I'm sure that it would still work fine as a stand-alone.
Matteo is a very sweet character and it's not hard to see why Sophia falls for him so completely. I don't always like seeing characters that are so young deciding that they are ready to completely settle down, but they worked so well as a couple that it didn't really matter.
This was a really enjoyable romance and I'm looking forward to more in the series hopefully. I don't know if we will get to hear about Amy's love life (Sophia's best friend) or perhaps her rather full-on sister Ro. Either way, I'll certainly be looking to read more.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews

Monday, 20 January 2020

Hard Ride - A.M.Arthur

Hard Ride (Clean Slate Ranch, #5)Hard Ride by A.M. Arthur
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This one is a 3 1/2 rounded up to 4 stars. It was a good read, but didn't quite make the full four stars as it did drag very slightly in the middle.
The story is about Slater and Derrick, who after a late night, one-off hook up, decide to become fake boyfriends. It's a storyline that I've come across a number of times before and while it isn't very realistic I do enjoy it. The relationship between Slater and Derrick is good and they clearly really click. The only slight problem is that most of the book is taken up with them both wanting to take things further, but not actually telling the other and taking any steps to do anything about it. Obviously, there needs to be some conflict in order to make the plot move along, but for me the whole I love him but I don't know how he feels about me from both of them began to drag a bit.
I enjoyed the conclusion of the book and the two men finally getting their happily ever after. They worked well as a couple, I'd just have liked them both to realise that just a little bit sooner.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews

Saturday, 18 January 2020

Out of Practice - Carsen Taite

Out of Practice (Legal Affairs, #2)Out of Practice by Carsen Taite
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have to admit that while I have read a few romance novels where the main characters are both males, this is my first with two female leads. Either I just haven't come across them, or there aren't as many around. It's a shame, as really what we are here for is the romance between two characters who make a great couple and that's certainly what Out of Practice is all about. This is the second in a series of books, I assume that there will be three in total. It worked fine as a standalone read.
Abby is a successful lawyer, after setting up in business with two of her friends she is finally able to indulge in the kind of thing that professionals who don't live in the US take for granted such as holidays. While she's planning on having solitude and the chance to get away from it all when she meets Roxanne all of that goes out the window. What starts out as a holiday romance soon develops into something more when the two meet up again back home.
I enjoyed this romance, although Abby was not looking for any kind of commitment and Roxanne was open to meeting her 'one' as soon as they met one another it became clear that it could well grow into something more.
I enjoyed Out of Practice and I'd be more than happy to give the other books in the series a go.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews

Friday, 17 January 2020

Sold to the King - Carmen Falcone

Sold to the KingSold to the King by Carmen Falcone
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have to admit that I tend to shy away from stories about virginal females learning at the hands of an experienced man. That said, from time to time I come across one that I actually really enjoy. Sold to the King is one such book. I think possibly part of the reason for that is that that's not all that this book is about. Although Izzy sells her virginity to King to be Nassor, the reasons for her doing so are to do with getting to the bottom of a murder mystery and Nassor deciding what kind of ruler he is going to be and how he will live his life.
Nassor and Izzy worked well as a couple. I was worried that as he met her through an auction, he might be a little bit overbearing, but almost from the start, he's caring and attentive to Izzy. Although they both have issues from their past to come to terms with, it's Nazzor that is able to accept things between them first, Izzy takes much longer to accept that they can be together and make things work.
I really enjoyed this story, Nassor and Izzy had some things to work through, but as a couple, they worked well together and the obstacles in their path didn't feel forced or unnatural.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews

Thursday, 16 January 2020

Never Truth - Jill Ramsower

Never TruthNever Truth by Jill Ramsower
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the second book in the Five Families series. Each one works well as a stand-alone novel, but I think reading each one gives a better idea of who all the players are. This time we focus on the youngest daughter of mafia boss Enzo, Sofia. As a child and teenager, she was best friends and then in love with Nico. From out of the blue he one day betrayed her and vanished from her life. Now, he's suddenly back in her life and all of their secrets are about to come out in the open.
I do enjoy second chance romances, as long as the reason that they broke up in the first place either isn't too awful or too silly. I enjoyed the romance between them as they rediscovered each other. As much of the book is about the past as it is the present and that worked really well. They have both changed in the time that they have been apart, but the connection between them is still very obvious and believable.
What I really like about this series so far is that it isn't about the characters suddenly seeing the error of their ways and turning from crime. If anything, they all just accept that it is part of their life and that's the way that things are. It seems more realistic than some other similar books.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, 15 January 2020

Off Limits - Penny Dee

Off Limits (Kings of Mayhem MC, #5)Off Limits by Penny Dee
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I'm a big fan of the Kings of Mayhem series. I think with each one that the next book just won't measure up and yet somehow it does. This is the first book that moves away from the Calley brothers and deals instead with their younger sister, Chastity.
Chastity seems to have been well named, despite wanting to have had boyfriends and a sex life, being the youngest sister of three tough motorbikers and the niece of a club president, no man really wants to come to close. Since she was a young girl she has had a crush on Ruger, but he's never seen her as anything but a child.
This is an age gap relationship, there are sixteen years between Ruger and Chastity, but it still works really well and I really enjoyed reading about how the relationship developed between them. Although he has known her all of her life, it isn't creepy in any way and it's clear that he has never thought of her like that until she is older.
I loved this story and reading about Chastity and Ruger. This was a great addition to the Kings of Mayhem series. I hope that there's still more to come.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews

Escape You Diana A. Hicks

Escape You
Diana A. Hicks
(Cole Brothers, #3)
Publication date: January 13th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
One night changes everything…
ATF agent Tyler Cole finally gets the break he’s been waiting for— a big NYC mob case. He just never expected for things to get this complicated.
Before he went undercover he spends an unforgettable night with a mysterious woman.
When they meet again, she’s his prime suspect, pregnant with his baby and about to be married.
Tyler should be trying to put Mia and her crew behind bars— but his desire is blurring the lines between right and wrong.
Mafia boss Mia Torelli learned the hard way that things aren’t always what they seem. She never planned on having a one night stand… with the enemy.
No names. No rules. No regrets.
Her passion filled night with a stranger raised the stakes in a very dangerous game.
Determined to make sure her Family survives the devastating loss of their boss, she must prove herself when she steps up as the new leader.
Mia must protect her secret at all costs, but an underground faction has other plans for her… and Tyler.
Note: This is a steamy romance with explicit sensual scenes, happily ever after, no cheating, and no cliffhanger. Can be read as a standalone.
Don’t miss out on this suspenseful and seductive series!
Unravel You, Book 1 (Derek and Valentina)
Provoke You, Book 2 (Matt and Ela)
Escape You, Book 3 (Tyler and Mia)
Unleash You, Book 4 (Wesley and Anabelle)
Defy You, Book 5 (Zack and Rebecca)

Author Bio:
Diana A. Hicks is an award-winning author of steamy contemporary romance with a touch of suspense. Book two in her Desert Monsoon series, LOVE OVER LOGIC, won the 2019 Readers’ Favorite Silver Medal Winner in the Romance – Suspense genre
When Diana is not writing, she enjoys kickboxing, traveling, and indulging in the simple joys of life like wine and chocolate. She lives in Atlanta and loves spending time with her two children and husband. Connect with Diana on social media to stay up to date on her latest releases.

My Review

This is the third book in the Cole Brothers' series. I think that it would fine as a stand-alone novel, although there is some mention of the other brothers in this book, not having read the others shouldn't really matter.

Although Tyler and Mia get together right at the beginning of the story, they don't actually know who each other are. When they meet again, Tyler is at an advantage, being an undercover agent, working against Mia's enemies. His work throws them together in a way that makes their feelings hard to resist.

I enjoyed the relationship between Mia and Tyler. They are really from different sides, which means that their relationship is difficult. I liked how this distance between them was dealt with. It did mean though that this book was more of a happy for now at the end rather than a happily ever after. The book does reach a conclusion, but I suspect that there is possibly a follow on story to come for this pair.

This was another enjoyable instalment in the Cole Brothers' series.


Saturday, 11 January 2020

The After Wife - Melanie Summers

The After Wife
Melanie Summers
Publication date: January 10th 2020
Genres: Women’s Fiction
From bestselling author Melanie Summers, comes a heartfelt and uplifting tale of love, loss, and letting go…
After losing her husband, writer Abigail Carson has all but given up on life. Having spent the last year cocooned in her Manhattan apartment, Abigail is suddenly forced to find a new home where she can stretch her dwindling savings. Intent on isolation, she moves to a tiny village in Nova Scotia where she’ll have no one to interrupt her solitude.
Little does Abigail realize that small-town life offers far less privacy than the big city. With neighbors knocking on the door bearing homemade treats and invitations, Abby soon finds herself immersed in the lives of the people of South Haven. She forms an unlikely friendship with Liam Wright, the handyman renovating her dilapidated cottage, and his daughter, seven-year-old Olive.
As the dark cloud engulfing Abigail lifts, she begins to believe she may have found love again. But just as Abigail is ready to leap, she discovers Liam carries with him a shocking secret that will ultimately cause everything to unravel. Abigail must decide if she will turn away from his pain or open her heart in the most hopeless of circumstances.
Insightful, enchanting, and filled with hope, The After Wife reminds us of the importance of human connection and the inseparable nature of love and survival.

My Review

There are some books that I really enjoy, but I forget almost as soon as I've read them, there are others, like this one, which seem to stay with me for a long time. Although I've only just finished it, I already know that this is one of the ones that will linger in my mind.

The other books that I've read by Melanie Summers have been her humorous books, written under the name of MJ Summers. The After Wife is a more serious read. It deals with love and loss, the way that the happily ever after that we crave in so many romance books is really just a happily until one of them dies. The what happens to the one who is left behind. That said, there is still a great deal of humour in this book. One minute you might be laughing, the next minute crying, at times both at once. It's been a long while since I cried real tears at a book, but this one had me sniffling more than once. (Not always when you'd expect, I had a crap 40th too.) 

I knew, more or less, where this one was going, but that didn't matter. this is a book about love, about families, about questioning who you are and your choices in life. It resonates on many levels, even if you haven't lost someone in the way that Abby has, there's much about her story that rings true. 

This isn't a perfect read, nothing is and let's face it perfect is boring. But I think it's pretty much as close as you can get. I loved every second of it, raced to the end and felt lost when it was over. Highly recommended.

Why do I not drink more often? I’m almost through my second pint and I honestly can’t remember feeling so good. I don’t even care how out of place I am. Instead, I happily devour a slice of homemade lemon meringue pie. Dinner service has ended, and most of the guests have filed out, replaced by several locals bearing instruments. A new feeling takes over the restaurant. It’s an easy, relaxed vibe full of inside jokes and laughter as they rearrange the tables into a large horseshoe. I rush to finish my dessert, hoping to make my exit before I attract the attention of every snoopy musician in the village.
Peter gives me a nod. “Liam’s just come in now.”
I turn and see a man standing at the entrance. He looks to be in his early forties. Medium height, with the sturdy build of a fisherman or maybe a miner in days gone by. He has shaggy sandy-brown hair and thick stubble that’s somewhere between needing a shave and needing another couple of months to grow. His eyes, though. There’s something about them that makes me stare a moment too long. They’re the shade of ice blue usually reserved for wolves.
He looks straight at Nettie and Peter, and my gaze follows his. They are standing side by side with matching hopeful grins. They look at me, then back at him, and when I glance in his direction again, I’m met with a look of dread. It doesn’t take me more than a second to figure out he thinks he’s about to be set up and he’s absolutely horrified at the thought of having any of his parts touch any of my parts.
And here I am gawking at him like a moron.
Blue sweater vest woman walks by and touches my arm. “You’ve got a bit of a mustache, love.”
She hurries off in the direction of the ladies’ room while I dab my upper lip with a napkin, confirming that I did, in fact, have a frothy white beer mustache.
Well, that’s that, then. The Millhouse boys it is.
“Liam! Come over and meet Abby!” Peter calls.
No. Please don’t. I swivel my stool to face the bar, and in my overly enthusiastic effort, I swing it too far and bang my left knee on the wood bracket. The force of it causes my body to jar and jerk back to my right and I plant my left hand in what’s left of my pie. I’m a regular Princess Di this evening, all elegance and grace.
Check, please.
Nettie gives me a concerned look. “You all right, love?”
“I’m fine. I just remembered I have to make a phone call. Can you put this on my room?” I smile too brightly as I slide off the stool and start for the side door as fast as my legs can carry me.
“Well, come back when you’re done so you don’t miss the music!” Nettie calls.
“And you still need to meet Liam!” Peter yells.
“I most certainly will!” Not.

Author Bio:
Melanie Summers also writes steamy romance as MJ Summers.
Melanie made a name for herself with her debut novel, Break in Two, a contemporary romance that cracked the Top 10 Paid on Amazon in both the UK and Canada, and the top 50 Paid in the USA. Her highly acclaimed Full Hearts Series was picked up by both Piatkus Entice (a division of Hachette UK) and HarperCollins Canada. Her first three books have been translated into Czech and Slovak by EuroMedia. Since 2013, she has written and published three novellas, and eight novels (of which seven have been published). She has sold over a quarter of a million books around the globe.
In her previous life (i.e. before having children), Melanie got her Bachelor of Science from the University of Alberta, then went on to work in the soul-sucking customer service industry for a large cellular network provider that shall remain nameless (unless you write her personally - then she'll dish). On her days off, she took courses and studied to become a Chartered Mediator. That designation landed her a job at the R.C.M.P. as the Alternative Dispute Resolution Coordinator for 'K' Division. Having had enough of mediating arguments between gun-toting police officers, she decided it was much safer to have children so she could continue her study of conflict in a weapon-free environment (and one which doesn't require makeup and/or nylons).
Melanie resides in Edmonton with her husband, three young children, and their adorable but neurotic one-eyed dog. When she's not writing novels, Melanie loves reading (obviously), snuggling up on the couch with her family for movie night (which would not be complete without lots of popcorn and milkshakes), and long walks in the woods near her house. She also spends a lot more time thinking about doing yoga than actually doing yoga, which is why most of her photos are taken 'from above'. She also loves shutting down restaurants with her girlfriends. Well, not literally shutting them down, like calling the health inspector or something--more like just staying until they turn the lights off.
She is represented by Suzanne Brandreth of The Cooke Agency International.


Wednesday, 1 January 2020

Cabin 1 by Amanda McKinney

Cabin 1 (Steele Shadows Security #1)Cabin 1 by Amanda McKinney
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Cabin 1 is the first in the Steele Shadows Security series. Gage, like his brothers, is a heavy drinking, womanising ex-military type. After the death of their father, they now run a private security firm with a fortress-like base hidden away on a mountain. (Although, it's not that hidden, as plenty of people seem to find them easily.) Niki is attacked in the middle of nowhere on her way home from a yoga class. When she stumbles across the Steel Security base when on the run from her attackers, Gage takes responsibility and soon finds that he is drawn to her.
The suspense side of this novel was fairly convoluted and when the person behind it was finally revealed I wasn't all that sure that it made a lot of sense. I'm afraid that the romance part of the book wasn't really that strong either. I couldn't warm to either Gage or Niki and didn't buy the chemistry between them. That's not to say that this was a bad read, it worked fairly well for the most part but just lacked that extra spark to push it towards being a great read.
I'd be interested to read more in the series to see if they get better as they go along, but I won't be in a huge rush.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

View all my reviews