Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Lori's April reads

So I have the serious blogging blues. It's taking me forever to get my monthly reads together. And how happy does it make me that Jen is reading and blogging again? Over the last few years, we've gone in cycles. When she's been too busy to blog, I've had the bug, and vice-versa. Why do I feel like it's about to become Jen's turn, big time? And how lucky are all of you to reap the benefits of her amazing reviews?

My April was very up and down. My mom spent a good deal of the month in the hospital, and so I didn't have much of a chance to either read or blog or even record my thoughts on books. So you're going to get whatever I can recollect about the books I read in April. Apparently, all really good reads for me, but nothing I could work up a full review for.

Goodreads tells me I read 17 books (well, one was a DNF,so really 16, but I'm gonna keep trying for that one - why, I have no idea.). That brings my total for the year up to 70 (or 71, with the DNF). I'm not listing the DNF because I still may review it over at Book Binge, and I don't want to color anyone's thoughts on a book thaqt everyone else seems to really, really like.

So anyway, here're April's reads:
Honor's Splendour by Julie Garwood
5 stars on Goodreads
Another perfect Garwood medieval. Loved Duncan and loved Madelyne. And as always, the supporting characters bring a sense of fullness and complexity, and, well, rightness to a story that actually has all that on its own.

The Edge of Night by Jill Sorenson
5 stars on Goodreads
Another fantastic read by Sorenson. She takes a cop and a gangbanger's ex-girlfriend and makes them a believable couple, and one you root for - each with their individual strengths and weaknesses, always realistic. And as usual, a superb secondary storyline of a younger couple - this time a gangbanger and a cop's sister. To make that work he had to be sympathetic but not woosie in his gang. Sorenson makes it all come together, and makes you root for this young couple, too.

The Sweetest Thing (Lucky Harbor, #2) by Jill Shalvis
5 stars on Goodreads
Really loved this one. I was unsure about it because I didn't love Tara in book 1, but she ended up a good heroine, issues and all. Written with all of Shalvis' wit and a great deal of emotional angst, this was terrific. And hello. Ford is an amazing hero. Yummy. I'm totally looking forward to Chloe and Sawyer's book.

No Mercy by Lori Armstrong
5 stars on Goodreads
A fantastic, gritty, dirty, messy, emotional book - more of a mystery/suspense with a hint of romance. I loved Mercy and her screwed up self. If it tells you how much I loved it, it's written in first person and I can't wait to read the next one. Whaaaa? Yup.

Victoria's Got a Secret by HelenKay Dimon
4 stars on Goodreads
I felt far less like a voyeur with this one than with the previous True Vows I read. I feel so bad for Jennifer as she went through her journey. And her on again, off again boyfriend from high school, Paul? Takl about sticktuitiveness. That man loved her from the get-go and never stopped. And who doesn't love a happy ending between high school sweethearts?

Goddess With A Blade by Lauren Dane
4 stars on Goodreads
A tough-as-nails otherworldly vampire hunter heroine and a badass vamipre hero who turn each other's world upside down. Throw in a few more very complicated relationships and you have a terrificly fun and intense book. Review to come closer to release date. Suffice to say for now that only Lauren Dane could put together all these paranormal characters and make me love it.

The Bargain by Mary Jo Putney
4 stars on Goodreads
This is a rerelease originally written in the 80s, I think. Interesting premise. They get married because he's on his deathbed and wants someone to look out for his sister, and she needs to marry by a certain date or lose her inheritance. What happens when he suddenly survives? The commoner and the lady make a wonderful couple. I adored David. Jocelyn took a little more warming up to, but she won me over as well.

My Irresistible Earl (Inferno Club, #3) by Gaelen Foley
4 stars on Goodreads
I really enjoyed Jordan's character. Unlike the last book, which had more of an Indiana Jones feel to it, I felt like this book was more grounded. I liked how open Jordan was and how self-aware he was.

Kiss Me, Kill Me (Lucy Kincaid #2) by Allison Brennan
4 stars on Goodreads
I'm still loving the return to the Kincaid family, especially the interesting dynamics between Sean and Patrick, Lucy's boyfriend/lover and her brother. And how Lucy's past keeps coming back to haunt her as she tries to move on with her life. This series is very well done.

Saddled and Spurred (Blacktop Cowboys, #2) by Lorelei James
4 stars on Goodreads
Another winner from James. No menage in this one like there was in book 1, and I liked the focus on the hero and heroine.

The Hometown Hero Returns (Home to Harbor Town, #1) by Beth Kery
4 stars on Goodreads
Kery's first book with Harlequin. I really enjoyed it. The heroine is unusual in that she's Lebanese - a gutsy move by Kery in this volatile world. Sometimes I wanted to punch her because she was so stubborn, but she had a great hero in her high school boyfriend, Marc. Torn apart by a shared trauma in their past, they have to find their way back together.

Command and Control (Holding out for a Hero, #2) by Shelli Stevens
3.75 stars on Goodreads
This was a tough one to rate for me. There were pieces I really loved, like Trevor's angst and his PTSD, and pieces I didn't love, such as the start of the "kidnap" scene. It felt awkward to me, and maybe it was supposed to. But I really like Stevens' voice, and am looking forward to book 3.

Desperate Deeds (A-Tac, #3) by Dee Davis
3.75 stars on Goodreads
I read the first two in March, and picked this one up in April. I found a lot more explaining' in this book than in the others, explaining of things that the operatives should have known, and so were explaining for my benefit. That's a pet peeve of mine. That aside, I enjoyed the conclusion (I assume) to the series. The traitor is found out in this one. I thought that this entire group of CIA black ops was very trusting and seemed awfully naive. This was the book where that seemed really apparent to me. So I can't rate this as high as the others, even though I liked the nonstop action and the nuke plot.

Just Surrender by Kathleen O'Reilly
3 stars on Goodreads
This was a disappointment to me, since I usually love O'Reilly's Blazes so much. I really wanted to love it, but the heroine just didn't work for me, with her daddy issues and the hero had mommy issues. Too much for me.

Backstage Pass (Sinners on Tour #1) by Olivia Cunning
3 stars
There was so much not to like about this book, from the stereotypes of the band (although admittedly probably deserved stereotypes) and the heroine's profession, to the immediate sex, to the comfort of the heroine being naked around many men when she's never done that before, and so much more. But at the same time, I found myself unable to put it down. And when it finished, and I didn't walk away saying, "Oh, I liked that!" I find myself wondering why it is that I'm dying to read the next book in the series. Which I went and bought. Huh.

Healing Hearts by Taryn Kincaid
3 stars on Goodreads
I adored the beginning of this book. The damaged hero and the hostile heroine, who was secretly in love w/ hero. Having said that, this book is a perfect example of a book that suffered from word count anxiety. The author tried to cram so much in, and there wasn't enough time to fully explore any of it, which is a shame because most of the threads were worth exploring deeply and thoroughly. The romance felt rushed to me, which saddens me since it had such huge potential.


  1. Sigh...Garwood. "Loved Duncan and loved Madelyne." Going totally off the top of my head here...thinking of the scene where she is allowed to pick her husband and she makes her way to Duncan, stands before him and says 'checkmate'....was this the one? One of the most memorable romance book scenes in my memory banks.

    Thinking of giving Sorenson another try. DNF'd Crash Into Me, but keep seeing strong, positive comments for her titles.

    Also have to toss some Shalvis titles back into my mix. Adore her.

    And wow, you are reading a little bit of everything! Inspiring me :-)(And thanks for your sweet words, btw.)

  2. I love Garwood! Now I'm going to have to look at my reading pile. :D

    You're not the only with with the blogging blues. Seriously. It's good that you have Jen! :)

    We chose some of the same books for the month. Loved the Shalvis. I have No Mercy and The Edge of Night by Sorenson on my TBB list.

  3. I know what you mean by ups and downs, but overall, it wasn't bad at all ;) and you read some books you really enjoyed, so that's always a good thing :)

    Also hear you on the blogging blues, I'm going through the same ^_^;

    There was just something compelling about Backstage Pass right? :P


Have you read it? What do you think?

Related Posts with Thumbnails