Wednesday, August 30, 2006

The Specialist

by Rhonda Nelson

The second of Rhonda Nelson’s Men Out of Uniform (see The Player), The Specialist was well worth the wait. Brian Payne is The Specialist, planner of the group’s missions, including the one that went wrong and ended in his friend Danny’s death. Brian’s guilt over this pushes him to leave the military – in exchange for granting his Colonel one favor. Colonel Garrett wants a pocketwatch supposedly owned by Robert E. Lee’s father, so he sends Payne to Gettysburg to find it. Payne feels that this is a waste of his time, but agrees to one week. Upon arrival he meets Emma Langsford who, unknown to him, is also looking for the watch. This little spitfire gets under his skin in ways that make him uncomfortable. His family life was not conducive to long-lasting relationships, so he isn’t about to let her get through to him.

Sent by her former commanding officer, Colonel Hastings, to find the pocketwatch, Emma is nervous about coming up against The Specialist. This formidable opponent with the ice blue eyes had a reputation for being good at what he did so Emma knew she had a challenge ahead of her. Emma had left the military to help take care of her dying grandfather. His death left her and her mother in debt over health care costs. To keep from losing their home, Emma works two jobs, tabling her dream of going to veterinary school on the back burner. Colonel Hastings’ offer of money for the job would solve those problems. Determined to get to the pocketwatch first, she never considered falling for the cynical Payne.

I loved the humor in this book, the feisty heroine and the cool hero. Their banter reminded me of the best of Spencer and Hepburn. And of course, this wouldn't be a Blaze without scintillating sex and Rhonda rights great sex scenes. Hot, hot, hot. I give this book 4 Amazon stars – there was one problem that kept pulling me out of the story. Emma’s surname kept changing. It started out as Langsford, then her mother’s last name was Evans – which caused me to go back and look at Emma’s name again. No mention was made of her mother having kept her maiden name upon marrying Emma’s father, John Edward Langston – yes, Langston. Later Emma is referred to as Emma Langston, and then back to Langsford. Once I got past this mistake in editing I was able to immerse myself into the story. It won’t be a problem the second time I read the book – and I will read this one again and again. I can’t wait for Guy’s story in The Maverick, coming out in October.


Edit: For some reason I can't get the wonderful cover for this book to load, so if you want to see it click the links.

UPDATE: 2007 RITA for Best Short Contemporary Romance Finalist

Monday, August 28, 2006

Just Try Me ...

by Jill Shalvis

The Shalvis does it again. Another wonderful Blaze story with all of the sex, humor and human emotion that I’ve come to expect from her. Lily Peterson was addicted to adrenaline; the natural high was an intricate part of who she was, so when she was seriously hurt while fighting a fire, the forced inactivity sent her plummeting to the depths of insecurity. Will her broken body ever recover fully, or would Lily be resigned to never feeling the exhilaration that risk taking always brought her? To find out, she goes back to the beginning, her first job guiding groups up into the Sierra Mountains. She’s determined to push herself to the limits and rediscover herself.

Jared Skye is a computer geek, never without some techno gadget, a city slicker through and through. After winning a fight with cancer, he’s determined to live life to the fullest and this trip up into the mountains is next on his list. With a renewed sense of what is important in life, he sets out to help Lily find her way – and when he falls in love he hopes that way leads to him.

Again, Shalvis has written a multi-layered story about not only a journey of physical endurance, but of mental and spiritual challenges. The secondary characters are once more an integral part of the story, providing not only much of the humor, but contributing to a fully developed backdrop to Lily and Jared’s love story.

Available at eharlequin

Thursday, August 24, 2006


by Sasha White

Sasha White has the ability to write sizzling sex scenes with feeling, something that not all erotica writer’s can do. The relationship between Katie and Joe is full of sexual tension even when they are not making love. Katie Long was the town’s “golden girl” and she was a little tired of the title. Feeling cooped up in the small town of Chadwick, she yearned to go to Vancouver and find what she knew her small town couldn’t give her. Seducing enigmatic Joe Carson on a dare, she discovered what she hadn’t known before – she loved giving up control, letting someone else call the shots. But Joe doesn’t fit into her plans. Or does he?

I was first introduced to these characters in Sasha’s short story Shift Change, which is in the book Sex in the Office. This little snippet into the lives of Katie and Joe was enough to make me anxious to read their entire story. And I was not disappointed. Bound is a great erotic romance - an Amazon five stars from me.