Tuesday, February 24, 2009

It Happened One Autumn

It Happened One Autumn is the second book in the Wallflower series by Lisa Kleypas. From the back cover.~

It happened at the ball...where beautiful but bold Lillian Bowman quickly learned that her independent American ways weren't entirely "the thing." And the most disapproving of all was insufferable, snobbish, and impossible Marcus, Lord Westcliff, London's most eligible aristocrat.

It happened in the garden...when Marcus shockingly-and dangerously-swept her into his arms. Lillian was overcome with a consuming passion for a man she didn't even like. Time stood still; it was as if no one else existed...thank goodness they weren't caught very nearly in the act!

It happened one autumn...Marcus was a man in charge of his own emotions, a bedrock of stability. But with Lillian, every touch was exquisite torture, every kiss an enticement for more. Yet how could he consider taking a woman so blatantly unsuitable...as his bride?

I love all the Wallflowers books, but I think that Marcus and Lillian's love story is my favorite. They are both such strong people, and neither really likes to give in to anyone else. It was fun to watch them fall for one another and try to negotiate their feeling for one another. When they finally give into their attraction for one another, the passion burns up the pages. Marcus shows a side of himself that few people have ever seen, and Lillian finds a way to tell Marcus of her true feelings for him. With two such passionate people in the relationship, Lillian and Marcus will never have a dull moment together.

I look forward to reading many more books by Lisa Kleypas in the future. I'm so thankful to CJ for suggesting Devil in Winter to me.

Secrets of a Summer Night

Secrets of a Summer Night by Lisa Kleypas is the first book in her Wallflower series. I normally don't read books in a series out of order, but had already started reading Devil in Winter before I realized it was the third in the series. From the back cover.~

Four young ladies enter London society with one common goal: they must use their feminine wit and wiles to find a husband. So a daring husband-hunting scheme is born.

Annabelle Peyton, determined to save her family from disaster, decides to use her beauty and wit to tempt a suitable nobleman into making an offer of marriage. But Annabelle's most intriguing-and persistent-admirer, wealthy, powerful Simon Hunt, has made it clear that while he will introduce her to irresistible pleasure he will not offer marriage. Annabelle is determined to resist his unthinkable proposition...but it is impossible in the face of such skillful seduction.

Her friends, looking to help, conspire to entice a more suitable gentleman to offer for Annabelle, for only then will she be safe from Simon-and her own longings. But on one summer night, Annabelle succumbs to Simon's passionate embrace and tempting kisses...and she discovers that love is the most dangerous game of all.

I love the Wallflower series by Lisa Kleypas. Secrets of a Summer Night is a fun and sexy book. I love how Annabelle and Simon fight their attraction to one another in most of the book. Annabelle must marry a nobleman with money to get her family out of debt. Although Simon has plenty of money, he does not have a title, so she doesn't even put him on the list of possible men to marry. However, Simon and Annabelle can't always fight their attraction to one another. When they finally give into their attraction, the reader can feel the passion between them. Annabelle and Simon show that opposites not only attract, but can fit together perfectly.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Tangled Up in Love

Tangled Up in Love is the first book in a new series by Heidi Betts. From the back cover.~

Ever since Dylan Stone beat Veronica Chasen out of a prime position at the Cleveland Herald, they've been bitter rivals, engaging in a very public war of words in their competing newspaper columns. they routinely challenge each other to go bungee jumping, white-water rafting, or into tattoo parlors to see who will wimp out first. But Veronica's latest taunt may be Dylan's toughest assignment yet. She dares him to learn to knit.

Dylan is not going to let something his grandmother can do scare him off. He's man enough to make a scarf-- and attend Veronica's weekly knitting circle. But when the infuriatingly handsome Dylan shows up at the craft shop and charms all the ladies, Veronica starts to get all knotted up in something that feels like love...

Tangled Up in Love is the February pick for Jennifer's random musings on-line book club. I loved the chemistry that I felt between Dylan and Veronica from the start of the book. They have been fighting with each other from the moment they met. Veronica's knitting challenge to Dylan sets the stakes higher than ever in their little battle. Veronica knows that without some help, Dylan will probably fail. When Dylan attends Veronica's knitting circle, she is tricked into helping Dylan complete his project. Dylan and Veronica finally give into their passion for one another with explosive results.

I loved that one minute Tangled Up in Love was hot and sexy and the next minute it was laugh out loud funny. It was fun to watch Veronica and Dylan figure out what they both wanted and needed out of life. I really enjoyed reading Tangled Up in Love and look forward to reading the rest of the books in this series, as well as more books by Heidi Betts.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Knit One, Kill Two

Knit One, Kill Two is by Maggie Sefton, a new-to-me author. Knit One, Kill Two is the first book in a new series. From the back cover.~

Despite the fact that her aunt was an expert knitter, Kelly Flynn never picked up a pair of knitting needles she liked--until she strolled into House of Lambspun. Now, in the first in a brand-new series, she learns how to knit one, purl two, and untangle the mystery behind her aunt's murder...

Kelly Flynn would be the first to admit her life in Washington, D.C., is a little on the dull side. But coming back to Colorado for her beloved aunt's funeral wasn't the kind of excitement she was seeking. The police are convinced that her Aunt Helen's death was the result of a burglary gone bad, but for the accountant in Kelly, things just aren't adding up. After all, why would her sensible, sixty-eight-year-old aunt borrow $20,000 just days before her death? With the help of the knitting regulars at House of Lambspun, Kelly's about to get a few lessons in cranking out a sumptuously colored scarf--and in luring a killer out of hiding...

I stumbled upon this book while looking for a new book when on a business trip last week. I love reading mysteries and very much enjoyed Knit One, Kill Two. Sefton wrote a pretty fast-paced story that had me guessing a few times as to who was the bad guy. I really liked that the mystery wasn't really a forensic book. I enjoy reading those types of mysteries, but this was much lighter and enjoyable. I also really love that the book includes a recipe and knitting patterns. I have always wanted to learn to knit and think I might even give it a try now.

The relationship between Kelly and her new knitting friends was so realistic. I loved that Sefton portrayed each of the women so differently, but still showed how they could become friends. The friends became amateur detectives to help solve the murder of Kelly's aunt. I enjoyed the first book in this series, and look forward to reading more books by Sefton in the future.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Just the Sexiest Man Alive

Just the Sexiest Man Alive is the first book by Julie James. From the back cover.~

Nothing fazes Taylor Donovan. In the courtroom, she never lets the opposition see her sweat. In her personal life, she never lets any man rattle her-not even her cheating ex-fiance. So when she's assigned to coach People's "Sexiest Man Alive" for his role in his next big legal thriller, she refuses to fall for the Hollywood heartthrob's charms. Even if he is the Jason Andrews.

Jason Andrews is used to having women fall at his feet. When Taylor Donovan give him the cold shoulder, he's thrown for a loop. She's unlike any other woman he's ever met: uninterested in the limelight, seemingly immune to his advances, and shockingly capable of saying no to him. She's the perfect challenge. And the more she rejects him, the more he begins to realize she may just be his perfect match...

I loved Just the Sexiest Man Alive. It was a fun and sexy read with lots of sass and sexual tension. Taylor only thinks about her career and Jason believes that everything he wants in life will always fall into his lap. Put the two together and you get an explosive combination. Taylor is the first person ever not to give Jason what he wants when he wants it. She also won't put up with any of his crap when she feels that he is disrespectful to her. Jason is intrigued by Taylor and really doesn't know how to act around her. It was fun watching them fight their feelings for one another as they fell in love.

James writes a really fun and sexy first read and I look forward to many more books from her in the future.

Regina's Closet

Regina's Closet:Finding my Grandmother's Secret Journal is by Diana M. Raab. From the book flap~

When glamorous Regina inexplicably ends her own life, her ten-year-old granddaughter, Diana, is devastated by the loss, and haunted by questions she wishes sh could have asked her grandmother. Diana's discovery of Regina's secret journal three decades later gives her a window into the unknown events of Regina's tumultuous life. Diana looks to the journals for answers, trying to reconnect with her beloved grandmother.

Through Regina's words, Diana learns of the privations of World War I, the heartbreak of being orphaned, and the pandemonium of events during her immigrations from Poland to Vienna to Paris and finally to the United States.

Diana draws strength from her grandmother's example, which sustains her when she receives some of her own shattering news. To share her personal story, Diana must first tell Regina's. The end result is a unique braided narrative, with excerpts of Regina's diary interwoven with Diana's own life experiences, which creates a touching portrait of a relationship between a granddaughter and her grandmother.

Raab tells an emotional story that draws the reader in from the very first page. Regina's story showed what an amazing woman she was, especially after the hell she had lived through. Regina's story made me think about my mother who died when I was only twelve-years-old. My mother also suffered from depression, but unlike Regina, it was not the cause of her death. I did recognize many of Regina's symptoms of depression in the memories of my mother. So far, I've managed to keep depression at bay, but I do believe that it is a hereditary disease, that can strike at any time. Reading about Regina and Diana's relationship also made me very grateful for the many years I had with both of my grandmothers, one of which I still have in my life today.

I enjoyed Regina's Closet very much and really liked the fact that the story made me think about so many other things in my life and the life of others. I look forward to reading other works by Diana Raab in the future.

Out of Pocket

So I've been out of pocket for the last few days. I traveled to Dallas for work at the first of the week and really haven't had the time to get on-line much after I came back. I did get some time for reading while traveling and even before I left. I read 3 books over the last week and will post all 3 reviews here later today or tomorrow at the latest.