‘Best of Both Rogues’ by Samantha Grace

sg tbobrSTORY: The worst thing Mr. Benjamin Hillary ever did was abandon his bride-to-be on their wedding day.

The hardest thing he will ever have to do is watch her marry another man.

After two long years abroad, Ben finds Eve every bit as captivating as she was the first time he saw her, and he vows to set things right.

Lady Eve Thorne has a new man in her life, and Ben is nothing but trouble. She is no longer a starry-eyed young woman, and now that he’s back, he can go hang for all she cares. At least that’s what she keeps telling herself…

REVIEW: This is the third story in Rival Rogues series from Samantha Grace and it’s Eve’s story, Sebastian’s jilted sister from ‘In Bed with a Rogue’, book two.

Lady Eve Thorn’s fiancé left her without a word of explanation and it took her two years to come to terms of that abandonment, finally finding a man that she might like, if not love, and make a future for herself.

Benjamin Hillary, Viscount Margrave had abandoned a woman that he loves with not so much as a word about why he had done so, and after two years out of the country, he’s ready to face the consequences and the woman he loves.

I had a very hard time with both of these characters and with the plot itself. I had no respect for the hero from the start. Abandoning her meant a huge scandal for her and no amount of groveling on his part ever redeemed him in my eyes.

Eve just baffled me to no end. If I was jilted, and I see the man who this to me, my first question would be, WHY?! No, that’s not Eve’s question, and that’s when I got pissed.

Samantha Grace can write fun, entertaining and complex characters, yet this is the second book that she wrote characters that are perplexing and unsympathetic.

I’m not giving up on this series or the author because I’m her fan so I’m hoping that the next one will have me laugh out loud as her first series did.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

‘To Kiss a Rake’ by Barbara Monajem

tkar bmSTORY: When a lady is abducted by mistake… 

Melinda Starling doesn’t let ladylike behavior get in the way of true love. She’s secretly assisting in an elopement . . . until she’s tossed into the waiting coach and driven away by a notorious rake.

… revenge really doesn’t pay.

Miles Warren, Lord Garrison, comes from a family of libertines, and he’s the worst of them all—or so society believes. When Miles helps a friend to run away with an heiress, it’s an entertaining way to revenge himself on one of the gossips who slandered him.

Except that he drives off with the wrong woman . . . and as if that wasn’t scandalous enough, he can’t resist stealing a kiss.

REVIEW: Melinda and Miles’s romance starts off with a monumental mistake, but its progress is swift and tantalizingly entertaining.

What I liked the most about this story is its pace. The author takes us on an adventure right from the start of this story, and she keeps the pace through some interesting developments of not just our couple but their best friends as well.

I found our heroine Melinda Starling to be tenacious, brave and a survivor. Our hero Miles Warren, Lord Garrison was a perfect man for her and I found him to be cynical only because he was burned badly by loving the wrong woman. No wonder he had trust issues!

I liked that the author had decided to minimize the obstacles our pair faced to only a few misunderstandings. More of them would have slowed the pace and diminished the integrity of the characters.

If you’re like me and crave for the Regency that is fun, entertaining and sweet, this one will fit to a tee!

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

‘In Bed with a Rogue’ by Samantha Grace

ibwar sgSTORY: He’s the Talk of the Town

The whole town is tittering about Baron Sebastian Thorne having been jilted at the altar. Every move he makes ends up in the gossip columns. Tired of being the butt of everyone’s jokes, Sebastian vows to restore his family’s reputation no matter what it takes.

She’s the Toast of the Ton

Feted by the crème of society, the beautiful widow Lady Prestwick is a vision of all that is proper. But Helena is no angel, and when Sebastian uncovers her dark secret, he’s quick to press his advantage. In order to keep her hard-won good name, Helen will have to make a deal with the devil. But she’s got some tricks up her sleeves to keep this notorious rogue on his toes…

REVIEW: In this second installment of Samantha Grace’s Rival Rogues series, we find out what happened to the ‘jilted’ groom, Sebastian Thorne whose wife-to-be was claimed by Anthony, his rival from ‘One Rogue Too Many’.

I have to say I loved this book much MUCH better than the first one in this series and the reason for it were the main characters. Both were likable and complex and the chemistry between them was so well written that you could feel the sparks fly off the pages.

Baron Sebastian Thorne is forced to deal with a couple of scandals he hadn’t foreseen. He’s not the only one to have been jilted. His sister’s life has been upended as well as her fiancé just up and runs off on her. He feels that he just can’t catch a break and decides that maybe it’s time he did something about his family’s reputation, as soon as he gets sobered up, that is.

Lady Helena Prestwick hasn’t had it easy for a long time now, but with her husband’s death, she aims to grab her well-earned independence as a widow, with both hands. She has earned her “proper” reputation the hard way and she will use it any way she can to right the wrong done to her and help anyone she can.

And then, one faithful night she meets her destiny as she saves a drunk …yeah, the rest is as they say, history.

I loved that these two characters were three-dimensional and the complexity of their characters made them real to me. I loved the way that they dealt with each other and the people around them.

I found the story heartwarming, sensual and at times, funny while the plot was intriguing. I highly recommend it to all my bookwarms who love their romance novels to be not just romantic but witty and heartwarming.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

‘One Rogue Too Many’ by Samantha Grace

ortm sgSTORY: When two of the ton’s most eligible bachelors fall for the same young woman, only one will win her heart…

Anthony Keaton, Earl of Ellis, and Baron Sebastian Thorne have been competing since childhood. Now, they both have their eyes set on Lady Gabrielle.

Gabby feels like a fool for trusting in Anthony—but she doesn’t know the whole truth. Determined to guard her heart this time around, she’s looking for a man who is steadfast and eloquent.

Sebastian knows this is his one chance to steal her heart. He has everything she’s looking for. But when Anthony finally reveals his true feelings, how will she choose between the two?

REVIEW: With this story Samantha Grace starts her new series with a spin-off of her Beau Monde Bachelors and you really don’t have to worry about not being able to follow this story if you haven’t read the previous four. The story can be read as a stand-alone.

Lady Gabby has loved her brother’s best friend Anthony ever since she was a very young girl and she always hoped that his feelings for her were the same, yet as Anthony comes of age, he marries another.

Anthony Keaton, Earl of Ellis, was a lonely boy as he was growing up, yet he finds solace and happiness with his best friend’s family. He adored young Gabby and had a special name for her, but being young himself, he never really admitted to deeper feelings for her even to himself. He married young and the marriage wasn’t a happy one. Finally realizing that he’d made a mistake of monumental proportions in not admitting to his feelings for Gabby, he is hell-bent on righting the course of his life by declaring his love for Gabby and walking her down the aisle.

However, it looks like he may just be a tad too late as Gabby has had enough of waiting and pining for him as Sebastian Thorne, Anthony’s rival, is set to beat him to it.

I have to say that this story had me a bit conflicted because the main characters were not as likable as Ms. Grace’s Beau Monde Bachelors were.

No matter how much I wanted to like Gabby, I just couldn’t. She frustrated me to no end. Her inner thoughts were just too childish and that put me off her.

As for Anthony, I warmed up to him more as the story developed, yet even his charm wasn’t enough for me to like the way he acted at times.

The chemistry between the two was there, even when the two were at odds with one another, yet somehow I wanted the passion to be deeper.

In the end, I liked it, but not as much as the previous series. If you like the huge misunderstanding tropes, you probably will love this story.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

‘Lady Vivian Defies a Duke’ by Samantha Grace

lvdad sgSTORY: The Naked Truth

Lady Vivian Worth knows perfectly well how to behave like a lady. But observing proper manners when there’s no one around to impress is just silly. Why shouldn’t she strip down to her chemise for a swim? When her betrothed arrives to finally meet her, Vivi will act every inch the lady—demure, polite, compliant. Everything her brother has promised the man. But until then, she’s going to enjoy her freedom…

A Revealing Discovery

Luke Forest, the newly named Duke of Foxhaven, wants nothing to do with his inheritance—or the bride that comes with it. He wants adventure and excitement, like the enchanting water nymph he’s just stumbled across. When he discovers the skinny-dipping minx is his intended, he reconsiders his plan to find Lady Vivian another husband. Because the idea of this vivacious woman in the arms of another man might be enough to drive him insane—or to the altar

REVIEW: Samantha Grace’s Beau Monde Bachelor’s series ends with Vivian and Luke’s story.

Lady Vivian Worth is an adventures young woman who is prone to trouble and her brother thinks the best way to curb her wild nature would be to wed her, so with that in mind he’s in the midst of negotiations with the Duke of Foxhaven to marry her off to his son.

Lucas Forest had just become Duke of Foxhaven, and it looks like his late father was in the midst of acquiring him a bride. This is not something he desires, so he sets off to see if he could break off the negotiations. And then, faith intervenes ….

I really liked both characters. They were complex and interesting as well as entertaining.

Vivian knows exactly who she is and how she “should” act, yet her soul is just so filled with curiosity and a need for letting go of the constraints that the society puts on women. Her innocence was refreshing, contagious and entertaining.

Luke would rather he be a world traveler than the Duke so he has high hopes that he might do both if he breaks of the upcoming betrothal. However, upon meeting Vivian, he starts rethinking that plan.

I must say, I loved this four book series very much and if you haven’t read it yet, please give it a go.

The stories are very fast-moving, entertaining and fun to read.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

‘Miss Lavigne’s Little White Lie’ by Samantha Grace

mllwl sgSTORY: A Scoundrel Drives a Hard Bargain…

Spirited and determined to protect her young brother at any cost, Lisette Lavigne is desperate to flee New Orleans. There’s only one ship sailing to England, though, and the rakish Captain Daniel Hillary will only allow Lisette’s family aboard for a very steep price…

But a Lady Always Gets the Upper Hand…

Daniel prides himself on running a tight ship, and he knows a lady will be nothing but trouble on a long voyage. Yet he can’t help but break his own ironclad rules when Lisette persuades him that being gentlemanly just this once is his wisest course of action.

REVIEW: First time I paid any attentions to our hero was in the scene in which Jake, his brother, walks in on him while he `had his butter churned’! Well, how can I not be interested in a man like that and in a woman that would bring him to heel?

As the story opens, we follow our heroine Lisette Lavigne as she escapes her fiancé in the
middle of the night, with her family in tow and in a search of Captain Daniel Hillary, who she hopes will take them to England and to safety.

Captain Daniel Hillary is drop dead gorges and a scoundrel who loves two simple pleasures in life, a woman’s supple curves and his Indiaman ship, not necessarily in that order. He’s just given his mistress her marching orders and is looking forward to leaving New Orleans when Lisette, all dressed in black and impersonating a widow, confronts him.

We’ve met Daniel in the previous books and I wondered about the woman Ms. Grace would give him. He certainly needed a strong counterpart but I also wanted someone that has charm and wit. Lis, as he keeps calling her, was a perfect match for him. This young woman proved to be made of stern stuff, yet when it came to her brother’s needs, displaying her vulnerable side made our hero want to protect her from anyone that meant them harm. It also revealed to us a secret or two he not only kept it from us, but from his family as well. We finally get to know what’s behind his `devil may care’ guilt ridden attitude and why he never allows any women passengers on his ship [unless they’re his family, that is].

Something about Lis touches his protective heart and he agrees to take her in but also making sure that this `widow’ is aware of his attraction to her. Slowly we get to be privy to their long held secrets and as they begin to trust each other and let their feelings show, we can’t help but root for them, wanting their happily ever after as much as they do. We don’t really want the bad guys to catch up to them, knowing that they will, and still hoping against hope, that something will befall the bad guys.

This was without a doubt fun filled romantic adventure. We also get to touch base with Jake and Amelia and are introduced to Serafina and Isaac; Lisette’s little brother Rafe was so sweet and unique; the bad dude’s were real sick sons-of-a-gun and I couldn’t wait for them to get their well deserved comeuppance; all secondary characters added a lot to this story and had just the right amount of angst to it.

In the end I had no doubt in my mind that Samantha Grace’s third book of her Beau Monde Bachelor series would be a hit with me. I recommend you read all three, and although they can be read separately, I wish you’d read them in the order they were written. It would truly enhance the reading experience and give you the total dynamic of this very entertaining family. Oh, and let’s not forget all those hot, sensual and steamy scenes that just might make you wish for a captain of your very own!

Five quills for sure! Glad to give them all for this awesome read!

Melanie for Romantic Crush Junkies Reviews eZine

‘If I Could Turn Back Time’ by Beth Harbison

iictbt bhSTORY: Told with Beth Harbison’s wit and warmth, If I Could Turn Back Time is the fantasy of every woman who has ever thought, “If I could go back in time, knowing what I know now, I’d do things so differently…”

Thirty-seven year old Ramie Phillips has led a very successful life. She made her fortune and now she hob nobs with the very rich and occasionally the semi-famous, and she enjoys luxuries she only dreamed of as a middle-class kid growing up in Potomac, Maryland. But despite it all, she can’t ignore the fact that she isn’t necessarily happy. In fact, lately Ramie has begun to feel more than a little empty.

On a boat with friends off the Florida coast, she tries to fight her feelings of discontent with steel will and hard liquor. No one even notices as she gets up and goes to the diving board and dives off…

Suddenly Ramie is waking up, straining to understand a voice calling in the distance…It’s her mother: “Wake up! You’re going to be late for school again. I’m not writing a note this time…”

Ramie finds herself back on the eve of her eighteenth birthday, with a second chance to see the people she’s lost and change the choices she regrets. How did she get back here? Has she gone off the deep end? Is she really back in time? Above all, she’ll have to answer the question that no one else can: What it is that she really wants from the past, and for her future?

REVIEW: Ramie Phillips is about to turn 38.  She is from Potomac Maryland and a middle class family.  Ramie has always been good at math.  Her father was a banker so at a young age, she learned all about the stock market.  Today, she a very nice nest egg she has earned from her savvy investing.  She works for Whitestone, a top private equity investment company.  Sadly, she lost her father when she was just 20. He had been a heavy smoker all of her life and died from the effects of that smoking.  Ramie is quite satisfied with her life at it is.  She loves her job and is happy to be single and to have no kids.

Ramie’s best friend is Sammy, a gay guy.  So, on the day before her 38th birthday, she, Sammy and some other friends were partying and sipping champagne on a boat when Ramie fell and hit her head.  When she woke up, she found herself in her bed in her childhood home and was once again a teenager.

Next, we follow Ramie through her high school graduation; her last few good times with her father knowing he will die soon; and chances to just be young again.  Through this, the reader learns about her life and her friends.

Has Ramie time traveled?  Will she be able to return?  Is it a dream and will she wake up soon?

I admit that I am not a fan of time travel scenarios.  Perhaps that is way the book dragged for me.  It started off like it was going to be a good story but it simply went downhill from there.  Even the ending was predictable.  I know that other readers have thoroughly enjoyed this book.  So, if you like time travel books, do give it a try.

Connie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher