Review of ‘Affinity’s Christmas Medley’ by Del Robertson, Jen Silver, JM Dragon, Annette Mori, Ali Spooner, Erin O’Reilly, Alicia Joseph and Lacey Schmidt.

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This book has made me realise just how much I love anthologies – and especially Christmas anthologies. Getting stories from different authors is wonderful – and what authors ! They are all fantastic stories by women who wrote the most beautiful tales of love, passion and hope. They evoke the spirit of Christmas in ways that made me happy and joyful.

‘Thundersnow and Lightning’ by Del Robertson is the story of veterinarian Sam, a kind, neighbourly woman who has lost the spirit of Christmas . Finding a woman half frozen in the snow changes her life and her outlook in a heartwarming and sexy way. What’s not to love about a story like that ?

‘Maybe this Christmas’ by Jen Silver was set in Hebden Bridge, the lesbian mecca of the north of England. I loved the setting and the sweet story of Emma and her struggle to get past heartbreak and feel love again.

‘The Little Helper’ by JM Dragon follows Laura , a woman who has resisted the lure of Christmas and love for many years only to find that all is not lost. Great characters and a lovely story that really captured all that is good in the world.

‘Who is Nicolas Claus’ by Annette Mori follows on from her wonderful novel ‘Captivated’. Tanner and Juliet are living together in domestic bliss and the hope for a baby of their own begins to occupy their thoughts. When a strange old white-bearded man moves into town their investigative skills come into play. Could he be?? Surely not.! Find out in this funny, tongue in cheek tale of love, friendship and family.

‘Christmas Story’ by Ali Spooner is a follow up to ‘South of Heaven’. Kendra and Lindsey are a loved-up couple looking forward to spending Christmas with family and friends. It has a lovely  family feel and is a happy story – so utterly romantic and hot (very hot ! ). It recaptured the feel of ‘South of Heaven perfectly.

‘Reflections’ by Erin O’ReillyIt’s about two lonely but very different women finding each other. A transformation occurs for both of them that had me hooked. She’s captured something so beautiful and emotional in this story.

‘This Christmas’ by Alicia Joseph is the tale of two outsiders who find that being who you are can be the most wonderful thing in the world – if only you have the courage. I loved Sam and Lana and would love to find out more about them.

‘Peaches for Honey’ by Lacey Schmidt told the story of former teenage sweethearts Ely and Georgia and the hope that life can work out. Will this Christmas be the one to make Ely’s dreams come true?

An excellent anthology to get you in the mood for the festive time ahead.

I was given this ARC by Affinity eBooks in return for an honest review.

 

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Amazon.co.uk link

Affinity Rainbow Publications link

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Review of ‘The Brutal Truth’ by Lee Winter

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A wonderful story that captured my heart! Australian journalist Maddie is sad and lonely in New York but her life becomes a lot more interesting when Elena, business mogul with a fearsome reputation, enters it. While she decides whether to shut down the newspaper Maddie works for she installs herself in an office within sight of the young woman. Their interactions are full of banter and give an insight into a side of Elena she hides from the world. Maddie is open and friendly and seeing Elena respond to her is wonderful. Lee Winter has written the perfect ice queen in Elena and let’s us see the tiniest chink in her armour. We begin to see the woman that Maddie sees and we fall in love with her too. Maddie has a way with people that leads to them opening up to her. Changes in her professional life come about because of this skill.

The story is beautifully paced with tear-jerking romance and exceptionally well written love scenes that leave the reader feeling joyful and thoroughly satisfied.

An adorable book.

I was given this ARC by Ylva Publishing in return for an honest review.

 

The Brutal Truth – Amazon US

The Brutal Truth – Amazon UK

The Brutal Truth – Ylva Publishing

 

Review of ‘Cuffs and Protests’ by Layla Holiday

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I enjoyed this hot and sexy tale of women from opposite sides of a big divide. Cop Kat has to try and reconcile what she is with her love for the woman she adores. Elle is a lawyer who feels she has to be true to her convictions. The story was well written and made me want to find out more about these characters. The sex scenes were raunchy and exceptionally well done. An enjoyable first instalment in the ‘Cops Gone Wild’ series that has me eagerly anticipating the next!

 

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Review of ‘Playing With Matches’ by Lacey Schmidt

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Lacey Schmidt really surprised me with this book. I thought it was going to be a nice romance about the perils of internet dating and blind dates but it turned out to be so much more. Dr Augusta Stuart, child psychologist, wants to meet someone special to spend time with when she moves to Texas for a new job. Callia Alexana professes to be uninterested in dating and finding a woman she can love and who will love her. Their paths intersect professionally and through friends but they rub each other the wrong way, even though they are immensely attracted to each other. There are disasters, secrets and obstacles to overcome before they can ever hope to be together. This was a story of depth and emotion and I appreciated it more and more as I got to know the characters. Cal was my favourite as she had a vulnerability to her that tugged at my heart. Gus was the calm, patient and understanding one but had her own reasons for holding back. It was beautiful, romantic and very sexy and I highly recommend it.

I was given this ARC by Affinity ebooks in return for an honest

Review of ‘Under Her Wing’ by Ronica Black

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From the start Ronica Black had me. I loved everything about this story, from the emotional intensity to the amazingly hot sex scenes. Jayden Beaumont runs a dog shelter and has dedicated her life to the animals and the troubled teens she gives a second chance. Kassandra Hayden comes into her life when he dog goes missing and is rescued by Jayden. Although straight up to this point Kassandra finds she can’t stop thinking about Jayden and the feeling is mutual. Kassandra is a wonderful person who tries to help out kids too and it gives the women a bond. As in all great romances the path of true love does not run smooth but getting there is beautiful. The emotion between them is so real and tear jerking at times. And the love scenes are phenomenal. I feel I’m raving – but I enjoyed it that much.  Highly recommended.

I was given this ARC by Bold Strokes Books and Netgalley in return for an honest review.

Under Her Wing by Ronica Black – Amazon US

Under Her Wing by Ronica Black – Amazon UK

Review of ‘The Murder Wall’ by Mari Hannah

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This is my first Mari Hannah Book and I’m seriously impressed. Detective Chief Inspector Kate Daniels is a brilliant character, strong and capable but when it comes to her personal life I just wanted to shake her. She’s living in fear of her secret being found out and of losing what she has built in her job as a murder squad detective. The personal and professional become intertwined and it was interesting to see how she dealt with it all.

The story was tense, thrilling and creepy and was intensified by the short chapters.  Mari Hannah’s writing had a gritty realism and the Newcastle and northeast area was a character in itself.  I loved it and can’t wait to work my way through the whole series.

Review of ‘Strike a Match’ by Fiona Riley’

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This series just gets better and better. Matchmaker Samantha has had a lot of success bringing people together but Abby Rossmore has yet to end the woman of her dreams. She keeps part of herself a secret and maybe that is the problem. When she bumps into firefighter Sasha at a wedding she realises there is a spark, but will it go any further? Their story is steaming hot as one expects from Fiona Riley, but also emotional and funny. I could see why Abby kept secrets but wanted her to see that Sasha was the one person she could trust with them. Sasha was sexy, heroic and caring – who could fail to fall for her? The supporting characters made the story all the better and I loved finding out what happened to Samantha and Lucinda. I hope this series goes on and on because I feel invested in the characters. I highly recommend ‘Strike a Match’.

I was given this ARC by Netgalley and Bold Strokes \books in return for an honest review.

A Heart Well Traveled Vol 3 – Available for pre-order

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‘A Heart Well Traveled – Tales of International Affairs and Unlikely Outcomes‘ from Sapphire Books is now available on Amazon for pre-order. I have a short story in this anthology,  entitled ‘The Train to Glasgow Central’ and I hope you will enjoy reading it. It is the story of a meeting between two women that takes them both by surprise and will leave them forever changed.

Sallyanne Monti has done a fantastic job editing all three volumes of this anthology. She has brought together authors from all over the world in this volume, including C.L. Cattano, Dolores Maggiore, Maria Siopis and Evelyn Deshane.

The book can be pre-ordered from Amazon:

A Heart Well Traveled Volume 3 – Amazon UK

A Heart Well Traveled Volume 3 – Amazon US

A Heart Well Traveled Volume 3 – Amazon Australia

A Heart Well Traveled Volume 3 – Amazon Germany

A Heart Well Traveled Volume 3 – Amazon France

Review of ‘Change in Time’ by Robyn Nyx

 

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I didn’t think it was possible to top the first in the Extractor Series by Robyn Nyx but I was wrong. ‘Change in Time’ is exciting, tense, romantic and sexy. The story centres around Landry, an Extractor for Pulsus, an organisation that sends teams back in time to change one small incident and improve the future. We saw the toll that can take on individual team members in the first book. In this instalment the consequences for Landry and for Pulsus become more serious.

Robyn Nyx has delved further into the characters emotions and their motivations. I liked seeing how Landry’s relationship with Jade changes her and makes her consider her actions more. Delaney’s mental state and how it affects the whole mission is nail-biting. The dynamic between Elena, Landry’s mother and the Pulsus boss, Jenkin, was fascinating and gave a depth to the whole backstory for me. The book was excellent and the author has left me desperate for more. I can’t wait for part 3!

I was given this ARC by Bold Strokes Books and Netgalley in return for an honest review.

Review of ‘Rock and a Hard Place’ by Andrea Bramhall

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Jayden Harris is probably the best female mountain climber in the world but an avalanche at Mount Everest changes her life personally and professionally and she decides she can’t be part of that world anymore. Rhian Phillips is an advertising executive charged with producing a reality TV show to help sell adventure clothing. She has issues of her own preventing her from living the life she should. When the two women are brought together the pull between them is strong and intense, although neither will admit it.

Andrea Bramhall has written a wonderful love story that takes place in a stunning landscape. Her beautifully descriptive writing took me right there and made me want more. The attraction between Jayden and Rhian was emotional, tear-jerking at times and very sexy. I loved both main characters. Jayden was wounded and suffering after the Everest disaster and I felt for her and hoped that she would find her happy every after. Rhian found it hard to believe in herself and needed to see that she was an person worth of love and adoration. There was a fair amount of tension in the story as we followed the escapades of the contestants on the reality show.  And a boo-hiss character that I can guarantee you will hate. It was an addictive story and one I was reluctant to put down. I hope Andrea Bramhall has a sequel in the offing!

I was given this ARC by Ylva Publishing in return for an honest review.