Friday, May 31, 2013

Who would have thought that the Lucky Harbor series from Jill Shalvis could get any better? Well it happened; Jill has managed to once more knock it out of the park with It Had to Be You! Jill proves that she is quickly becoming one of the top writers in the contemporary romance genre. She knows how to write characters which draw the person who is reading her books right in.
If it wasn’t for bad luck Ali Winters would have no luck at all. She catches her current boyfriend cheating, he’s moved out of the place they were living and neglects to tell her that the least runs out that same day, and then she’s arrested for missing community money. Luke Hanover is a detective from San Francisco who returns to his home town for a much needed vacation.  He returns to his grandmother’s house that at this point should be renter free, not knowing that Ali remains in the house. Ali is desperate for a place to stay, and she and Luke reach a compromise about her remaining in the house. With his last case having gone wrong, the last thing Luke needs or wants is to be dragged into another case, but when Ali is arrested in his home Luke cannot help but be pulled in. As he’s pulled into the case to help Ali set her life right, the sparks between these Ali and Luke begin to fly.
It Had to Be You is like cotton candy, you can eat this book up in a single sitting. She writes very vivid and often times true to life characters that seem to come to life off of the pages. I love that she doesn’t neglect to revisit characters from the previous books, and she does it in such a way that they don’t take focus of the story but add to the current couples.

It Had to Be You ranks up there as one of my favorites thus far in the Lucky Harbor series! Be sure not to miss this gem of a story. 

Friday, May 3, 2013

An Amazingly Good Read! Much better than Fifty Shades!

First let me start off by stating that I have been reading J. Kenner for years. I have followed her books throughout all of her various series. I have loved everything she has written since the publication of Aphrodite’s Kiss. When Release me was released I of course jumped and purchased this book, for the simple fact that it was a new release from a favorite author. However, as a bookseller I was burned out on all of the many variations of 50 Shades of Gray that are currently available on the market. So I found myself avoiding Release Me, but instead reading many other books in the meantime.
Finally after listening to a customer who had read and raved about Release Me I took picked it up and started to read. What a pleasant surprise this book was! I could not put it down and found myself connecting to the characters on so many levels.  While Release Me has all of the elements that the current erotic romance market seems to be demanding this book has so many more levels than some of the other out right erotic tales which seem to lack a genuine story.
In Release Me we meet Nikki, a beautiful and troubled 24 year old who is looking to break free of her former pageant lifestyle and make it on her own in the business world. She is a breath of air when compared to all of the other erotically written females these days. She is independent, strong, and self- sufficient. She has no fear of standing up to Damien and pursuing the life goals that she has set forth for herself. Damien Stark is a commanding and powerful billionaire who could have any woman he chooses but has set his sights on Nikki.  He is a former tennis star and a very private person who will go to any length to keep his personal life private. There is little doubt that Damien Star is a dominant, power simply steams off the pages of this book. Each of these two protagonists has an extremely dysfunctional past and yet they come together on a somewhat equal playing field. Passion begins to steam as these two strong willed characters come together. Release Me takes place over several days and yet the story never comes off rushed nor does the relationship between Nikki and Damien ever feel like it was forced. Release Me is full of steamy passion, and mild BDSM scenes. however the sexual relationship is slow growing at first.  In my view Ms. Kenner has a way of writing a more natural version of a dominant/submissive relationship.
I absolutely loved Release Me! I loved that Nikki was not a simpering ninny; she is smart and has overcome many of her own demons on her own. Words cannot express the connection to Damien Stark I felt. One can feel the power of this well written character. If there was any BDSM written novel that I would recommend it would be Release Me. J. Kenner has a way with words that makes people feel her star characters. Be sure to grab your copy of Release Me today, you will not regret it! Easily a five star read.