Announcement

Feminist Fairy Tale Reviews is currently on hiatus. I hope to return to blogging sooner rather than later.

I will still be posting mini book reviews on Goodreads and talking books on Twitter so feel free to find me there.

Thank you and happy reading1


Tuesday, June 30, 2015

TOP TEN TUESDAY: Books I've Read So Far in 2015


Hosted by the ladies over at The Broke and the Bookish.

I've had a decent reading year so far.  As of today, I have read 74 books with two 5 star reads and 12 4.5 star reads.  I am including my favorite quote from each of the books below to give you a hint of why I enjoyed them so much.

Carry the Ocean (The Roosevelt, #1)
1. Carry the Ocean by Heidi Cullinan (male/male contemporary)
“That's my ocean. I have to pretend as best I can to be like people on the mean so people don't call me a robot. I'm not a robot. I'm real and I have feelings the same as everyone else. And I want a boyfriend. Except my ocean doesn't make me want to be dead. It makes me want to fight. I want you to fight too, Jeremey. I want us to carry our oceans together.” 
Magic Bleeds (Kate Daniels, #4)
2. Magic Bleeds by Ilona Andrews (urban fantasy)
"Some of you know me. Some of you have seen me fight and some of you are my friends. Have your vote. But know this: if you come to remove me, come in force, because if you try to separate me from him, I will kill every single one of you. My hand won't shake. My aim won't falter. My face will be the last thing you‟ll see before you die.” 
The Luckiest Lady in London
3. The Luckiest Lady in London by Sherry Thomas (historical romance)
“So . . . I don’t trust you and you don’t understand me.” He laughed despite himself. “No wonder we get along so well.” 
A Bollywood Affair
4. A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev (contemporary romance)
This had to be the craziest thing that had ever happened to him in his entire godforsaken life. He was not going to run after this crazy woman. He sank down on the patio steps and dropped his head into his palms. Of all the...she had wiped off his kiss, spat it out. She had called it...God, the kiss was seared into his fucking soul and she'd said...yuck?!
Strangers in Death (In Death, #26)
5. Strangers in Death by JD Robb (romantic suspense)
Clearing her throat, Peabody turned the cube on record. "I owe Dallas, Lieutenant Meaniepants Eve, twenty dollars to be paid out of my hard-earned, under-appreciated detective's salary next payday. Peabody, Detective Churchmouse Delia."
The Royal We
6. The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan (contemporary romance)
"He has kind of a homicidal face. Or is that just syphilis making him insane? British monarchs do love their syphilis.""A prerequisite of the job," he agreed. 
The Lady Hellion (Wicked Deceptions, #3)
7. The Lady Hellion by Joanna Shupe (historical romance)
On one side of his brain, logic was standing on a chair, waving its arms to get his attention. On the other side, lust and yearning rubbed their hands together in unholy anticipation.
Rock Hard (Rock Kiss, #2)
8. Rock Hard by Nalini Singh (contemporary romance)
“I just met my new boss,” she groaned into the phone. “Or more specifically, I threw an industrial-strength stapler at his head.” 
The Shameless Hour (The Ivy Years, #4)
9. The Shameless Hour by Sarina Bowen (NA contemporary)
Over the years, I'd heard people whisper about the fact that I never had female friends. People have told me to my face that I can't stand competition from other girls. Not true. The real reason I lacked female friends was that I don't speak lip gloss.
Soulbound (Darkest London, #6)
10. Soulbound by Kristen Callihan (historical/paranormal romance)
With infinite care, as though he were handling a babe, he lifted the sword out, and a sigh seemed to go through him, "Ah, my lovely, it's been far too long.""Shall I leave you two alone, then?" Eliza's lips twitched. She'd never seen such a look of reverence mixed with old familiarity. It was nearly indecent.Adam spared her a glance, "Quiet, woman, a man's relationship with his sword is a sacred thing.""So I've heard."

Monday, June 29, 2015

REVIEW: "Love and Other Scandals" by Caroline Linden


Love and Other Scandals (Scandalous, #1)
Love and Other Scandals by Caroline Linden
(Scandalous #1)

For Ages 18+ (Language, Sensuality)
Historical Romance -- Regency England

Avon -- Published on July 30, 2013
Ebook, 384 pages
Read in June 2015
Available through Scribd

Rating: 3.5 Stars

THEMES/TROPES
Best Friend's Sister, Enemies to Lovers

SUMMARY
Joan Bennet is tired of being a wallflower. Thanks to some deliciously scandalous—and infamous—stories, she has a pretty good idea of what she's missing as a spinster. Is even a short flirtation too much to ask for?

Tristan, Lord Burke, recognizes Joan at once for what she is: trouble. Not only is she his best friend's sister, she always seems to catch him at a disadvantage. The only way he can win an argument is by kissing her senseless. He'd give anything to get her out of her unflattering gowns. But either one of those could cost him his bachelor status, which would be dreadful—wouldn't it?


FIRST LINE
"The first time Joan Bennet met Tristan Burke, he burst into her bedroom late at night wearing only his trousers and holding a single red rose."

MY THOUGHTS
I do love a good best friend's sister romance and Love and Other Scandals was a decent example of this theme.  The basic plot is that Joan Bennet is on her way to being a spinster and really just wants a little excitement in her life.  But, what she gets is her brother's best friend, Tristan, who knows just how to get her in a rage especially when he kisses her without warning.  Things get more complicated when Joan's parents and brother leave town and Tristan is asked (by her brother) to keep an eye on her.

This is a familiar plot for fans of historical romance, but that didn't lessen my enjoyment of it.  There were many fun interactions between Joan and Tristan before they were left to their own devices that I felt like their relationship would have happened with or without the indirect interference.  These two provided plenty of banter that is obviously tension-filled and I thought they were a very cute couple.

As people, Joan and Tristan were both easy to like.  Joan has felt overlooked for many years and part of that is due to her height and inability to look good in the current fashions.  Her parents' impromptu trip allows her to break out of her shell a bit more and gain some much-needed confidence.  But, I liked that she never blamed her parents for her situation and understood their (especially her mother's) good intentions.

Tristan has spent much of his life overcompensating for his loneliness by figuring out how outrageous he can act.  There are some heartbreaking moments where he discusses his lonely childhood growing up with a spiteful aunt and never really feeling affection.  He obviously falls for Joan early on and spends quite a bit of time trying to make her happy.  The balloon ride scene was one of my absolute favorites between them!

Since this is the first in a series, readers are introduced to the heroines of some future books: Joan's best friends Penelope and Abigail.  There is very little detail provided about them beyond their friendship with Joan, but I look forward to reading their stories.  Caroline Linden also does a good job in her portrayal of Joan's family and their obvious love for her.  I particularly enjoyed her scandalous Aunt Evangeline.

As a whole, I didn't find much wrong with Love and Other Scandals.  The characters were well-written, the plot moved along fine, and the romance was cute.  Unfortunately, there wasn't anything overwhelmingly original about it, in my opinion.  I was entertained, but I'm not sure how much I will remember about the book in a few months time.  That is the main reason why I am giving it the rating that I am, but I wanted to make sure that readers knew that I did like it.  I will definitely be picking up more of this series.

BOOKS IN THE SERIES
1. Love and Other Scandals
2. It Takes a Scandal
2.5. All's Fair in Love and Scandal
3. Love in the Time of Scandal
4. Six Degrees of Scandal

LEARN MORE
Goodreads -- LibraryThing -- BookLikes -- Shelfari
Author Website

WHERE TO GET IT
Amazon -- B&N -- BAM -- Book Depository -- Kobo -- Google Play -- Audible -- Scribd -- Oyster

Sunday, June 28, 2015

LUSTING FOR COVERS: Adam

Photobucket 
Lusting for Covers is a weekly meme, held on Sunday, that allows bloggers to share their current cover obsession with fellow book lovers.  It is hosted by TBQ @ TBQ's Book Palace.

Adam (Riding Hard, #1) 
Adam (Riding Hard #1) by Jennifer Ashley
Contemporary Romance

Stuntman Adam Campbell returns home to Riverbend, Texas, after being seriously injured in a movie stunt gone wrong. He settles in to heal at his family's ranch, where his four brothers, famous trick riders, train horses.

Adam is stunned to find Bailey Farrell working there—she was the shy girl who'd helped Adam graduate high school so he could run off to Hollywood. Except the budding Bailey, with whom Adam had a brief but intense affair, has blossomed into a beautiful woman. Now the sparks that had once ignited between them threaten to explode.

Adam is beaten-up, broken-down, and has lost his nerve—the stunt that injured him also killed his best friend. The only one he can turn to is Bailey, but will Bailey, who has come back to Riverbend to lick her wounds after a painful divorce, be willing to help him again?
It is pretty obvious why I picked this cover for this week.  I love a sexy bare back photo and the cowboy hat just makes it even better.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

UPCOMING RELEASES: July 2015

A list of new releases that grabbed my attention for the coming month. As always, release dates are subject to change.  All titles link back to Goodreads.

JULY 1ST
Chasing Impossible (Pushing the Limits, #5)
Chasing the Impossible (Pushing the Limits #5) by Katie McGarry (YA contemporary)

JULY 7TH
Do Not Forsake Me (Outlaw Hearts, #2) A Sword for His Lady (Courtly Love, #1) The Duke Can Go to the Devil (Prelude to a Kiss, #3)
Do Not Forsake Me (Outlaw Hearts #2) by Roseanne Bittner (historical romance)
A Sword for His Lady (Courtly Love #1) by Mary Wine (historical romance)
The Duke Can Go to the Devil (Prelude to a Kiss #3) by Erin Knightley (historical romance)

Hell or High Water (Deep Six, #1) Ink and Bone (The Great Library, #1) The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate (Calpurnia Tate, #2)
Hell or High Water (Deep Six #1) by Julie Ann Walker (contemporary romance)
Ink and Bone (Great Library #1) by Rachel Caine (YA fantasy)
The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate (Calpurnia Tate #2) by Jacqueline Kelly (MG historical)

JULY 14TH
Go Set a Watchman (To Kill a Mockingbird, #2) A Virtuous Ruby (Migrations of the Heart, #1) Bad Wolf (Shifters Unbound, #7.5)
Go Set a Watchman (Mockingbird #2) by Harper Lee (literary fiction)
A Virtuous Ruby (Migrations of the Heart #1) by Piper Huguley (historical romance)
Bad Wolf (Shifters Unbound #7.5) by Jennifer Ashley (paranormal romance)

JULY 20TH
Finding Their Way (Restoration #2)
Finding Their Way (Restoration #2) by A.M. Arthur (male/male contemporary)

JULY 21ST
The Art of Sinning (Sinful Suitors, #1) The Last Ever After (The School for Good and Evil, #3) Focus on Me (In Focus #2)
The Art of Sinning (Sinful Suitors #1) by Sabrina Jeffries (historical romance)
The Last Ever After (School of Good and Evil #3) by Soman Chainani (MG fantasy)
Focus on Me (In Focus #2) by Megan Erickson (male/male contemporary)

JULY 23RD
Truth or Beard  (Winston Brothers, #1)
Truth or Beard (Winston Brothers #1) by Penny Reid (contemporary romance)

JULY 28TH
Taking the Heat ( Jackson: Girls' Night Out #3) The Marriage Act The Bourbon Kings (The Bourbon Kings, #1)
Taking the Heat (Jackson: Girls Night Out #3) by Victoria Dahl (contemporary romance)
The Marriage Act by Alyssa Everett (historical romance)
The Bourbon Kings (The Bourbon Kings #1) by JR Ward (contemporary romance)

Lady Be Good (Rules for the Reckless, #3) Spider's Trap (Elemental Assassin, #13) The Hotter You Burn (The Original Heartbreakers, #2)
Lady Be Good (Rules of the Reckless #3) by Meredith Duran (historical romance)
Spider's Trap (Elemental Assassin #13) by Jennifer Estep (urban fantasy)
The Hotter You Burn (Original Heartbreakers #2) by Gena Showalter (contemporary romance)

The Sea King (Weathermages of Mystral, #2)  Frisk Me (New York's Finest, #1) Breaking (Fall or Break, #2)
The Sea King (Mystral #2) by C.L. Wilson (fantasy romance)
Frisk Me (New York's Finest #1) by Lauren Layne (contemporary romance)
Breaking (Fall or Break #2) by Barbara Elsborg (male/male contemporary)

The Highlander Takes a Bride  All the Ways to Ruin a Rogue (The Debutante Files, #2) If He's Noble (Wherlocke, #7)
The Highlander Takes a Bride (English Bride in Scotland #3) by Lynsay Sands (historical romance)
All the Ways to Ruin a Rogue (Debutante Files #2) by Sophie Jordan (historical romance)
If He's Noble (Wherlocke #7) by Hannah Howell (historical romance)

JULY 30TH
Bound to Darkness (Midnight Breed #13)
Bound to Darkness (Midnight Breed #13) by Lara Adrian (paranormal romance)

Friday, June 26, 2015

AUDIOBOOK REVIEW: "Salvation in Death" by JD Robb

Salvation in Death (In Death, #27)
Salvation in Death by JD Robb; Narrated by Susan Ericksen
(In Death #27)

For Ages 18+ (Language, Violence, Sensuality)
Romantic Suspense -- Futuristic

Berkeley -- Published on November 4, 2008
Audiobook, 13 hours and 55 minutes
Read in June 2015
Purchased from Audible

Rating: 4 Stars

THEMES/TROPES
Murder Mystery, Alpha Hero, Kick-Ass Heroine, Futuristic Setting

SUMMARY
At the most solemn moment of a Catholic funeral Mass, the priest brings the chalice to his lips. Seconds later, he is dead on the altar.

For the mourners packed into the pews, Father Miguel Flores's sudden demise is an unimaginable shock. When Detective Lieutenant Eve Dallas confirms that the consecrated wine contained enough potassium cyanide to kill a rhino, she's prepared to plunge in and find out why, despite her discomfort with her surroundings. It's not the bodegas and pawnshops of East Harlem that bother her, though the neighborhood is a long way from the stone mansion she shares with her billionaire husband, Roarke. It's all that holiness flying around at St. Cristobal's that makes her uneasy.

A search of the victim's simple, sparsely furnished room reveals few personal touches, except for a carefully hidden religious medal with a mysterious inscription, and a couple of underlined Bible passages. The autopsy reveals much more: faint scars of knife wounds, a removed tattoo - and evidence of plastic surgery suggesting "Father Flores" may not have been the man his parishioners thought. Now, as Eve pieces together clues that suggest identity theft, gang connections, and a deeply personal act of revenge, she hopes to track down whoever committed this unholy act. Until a second murder - in front of an even larger crowd of worshippers - knocks the whole investigation sideways.

The way Eve sees it, vengeance may be the Lord's business, but if there's going to be any earthly justice in this case, it's up to her.


FIRST LINE
"At the mass of the dead, the priest placed the wafer of unleavened bread and the cheap red wine on the linen corporal draping the altar."

MY THOUGHTS
I found Salvation in Death to be an interesting installment though it is far from my favorite in the series.  Things start off with a bang (not literally) when a Catholic priest, Father Flores, dies after drinking Holy Communion wine in the middle of a funeral.  Lieutenant Eve Dallas and her partner Detective Delia Peabody are assigned to case which gets weirder when it is discovered that the body in the medical examiner's office does not match the DNA of Father Miguel Flores.

In terms of the murder investigation, Eve and Peabody have to figure out who was impersonating Father Flores so that they can then discover the motive and culprit of the murder.  Most of the book involves identifying the victim which takes quite a bit of man power.  Thankfully, Eve has her trusty team to help with McNab, Mira, and, of course, Roarke dealing with mountains of information and theories.  I also love the community involvement in these books since it allows me to revisit some favorite side characters and embrace their special skills.

Another aspect I liked about this book was the careful way that Eve and Peabody had to take as they investigated the death of a priest.  They had to interact with both higher ups in the Catholic Church and with Flores's colleagues and parishioners.  The idea of faith and its place in society plays a big role in this book, but it never seemed preachy or disrespectful.  While Eve herself is not religious and is baffled by it, she ends up befriending one of Flores's colleagues who helps her look at it in a different way.  Most of the characters in this book have something to say about faith, justice, and salvation and the author allows them to reveal their opinions without judgment.

My main issue with this story was the resolution.  It seemed very rushed and a lot of information was thrown in at the last minute.  I understand that, once the identity was revealed, it made it easier for Eve to figure out the murderer, but I wish that there had been better pacing.  I also would have liked a little more development on the part of the murderer beyond what we got.

But, even though I had some problems with storyline, Salvation in Death was an entertaining read that I will be happy to re-read again.  Susan Ericksen, as always, is an amazing narrator who helps the story come alive on my morning and afternoon commute.  JD Robb knows what she is doing with this series and I am happy to be along for the ride.

FAVORITE QUOTE
“I don’t get it. Scratch, bite, squeal, slap. Why do women fight like that? They’ve got fists. It’s embarrassing to our entire gender.” 

BOOKS IN THE SERIES
There are too many to show here, but I'm providing a link to the Goodreads listing and the listing from JD Robb's website.

LEARN MORE
Goodreads -- LibraryThing -- BookLikes -- Shelfari
Author Website

WHERE TO GET IT
Amazon -- B&N -- BAM -- Book Depository -- Kobo -- Google Play -- All Romance -- Audible

Thursday, June 25, 2015

THEME THURSDAY: Alpha Heroines

This is part of a feature where I focus on a specific theme (or trope) that I have found in my years as a voracious reader/blogger.  I love finding commonalities between my favorite books and how that helps define me as a reader.

Please note this is not meant to be a comprehensive list.  I am just picking a few examples of this trope.  So, if you have a favorite example of this theme, let me know about it in the comments.  I'm always on the lookout for more books to be added to my wishlist.


ALPHA HEROINES

These are female protagonists who have take charge personalities that one would identify as alpha.  Often they are the ones giving orders rather than following them and some of the drama in their stories involves having to deal with such a situation.  These heroines also could be defined as kick-ass or strong, but I'm categorizing them as on their particular personality traits rather than a general description of them.

Outlander (Outlander, #1)
Outlander by Diana Gabaldon -- Claire Randall (I gave it 5 stars.)
Historical Fiction/Time Travel
The year is 1945. Claire Randall, a former combat nurse, is just back from the war and reunited with her husband on a second honeymoon when she walks through a standing stone in one of the ancient circles that dot the British Isles. Suddenly she is a Sassenach—an “outlander”—in a Scotland torn by war and raiding border clans in the year of Our Lord...1743.
Hurled back in time by forces she cannot understand, Claire is catapulted into the intrigues of lairds and spies that may threaten her life, and shatter her heart. For here James Fraser, a gallant young Scots warrior, shows her a love so absolute that Claire becomes a woman torn between fidelity and desire—and between two vastly different men in two irreconcilable lives.
Lord of Scoundrels (Scoundrels, #3)
Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase -- Jessica Trent (I gave it 5 stars.)
Historical Romance/Regency England
Tough minded Jessica Trent's sole intention is to free her nitwit brother from the destructive influence of Sebastian Ballister, the notorious Marquess of Dain. She never expects to desire the arrogant, amoral cad. And When Dain's reciprocal passion places them in a scandously compromising, and public, position, Jessica is left with no choice but to seek satisfaction...
Damn the minx for tempting him, kissing him...and then for forcing him to salvage her reputation! Lord Dain can't wait to put the infuriating bluestocking in her place -- and in some amorous position. And if this means marriage, so be it -- though Sebastian is less than certain he can continue to remian aloof...and stell his heart to the sensuous, head strong lady's considerable charms.

Revealed (The Blue Raven, #1)
Revealed by Kate Noble -- Phillipa Benning (I gave it 4 stars.)
Historical Romance/Regency England
Phillippa Benning is the unrivaled beauty of the Season. But when another lady challenges her for a marquis's attentions, Phillippa entices him to a secret rendezvous-only to stumble upon The Blue Raven, England's most famous spy, lurking at the site of her planned tryst.
The Blue Raven has uncovered an enemy plot directed at upcoming society functions, but he's unable to infiltrate London society. Phillippa makes an offer: in exchange for entrée among the ton, he agrees to have his true identity revealed at the Benning Ball-guaranteeing her unrivaled notoriety. As the danger draws closer, the mysterious spy and Phillippa give in to mutual desire. But when the game turns deadly, betrayal waits around the corner, and Phillippa must decide once and for all-is it the myth that captured her heart, or the man?
Naked in Death (In Death, #1)
Naked in Death by JD Robb -- Lieutenant Eve Dallas (I gave it 4.5 stars.)
Romantic Suspense/Murder Mystery
In a world of danger and deception, she walks the line--between seductive passion and scandalous murder...Eve Dallas is a New York police lieutenant hunting for a ruthless killer. In over ten years on the force, she's seen it all--and knows her survival depends on her instincts. And she's going against every warning telling her not to get involved with Roarke, an Irish billionaire--and a suspect in Eve's murder investigation. But passion and seduction have rules of their own, and it's up to Eve to take a chance in the arms of a man she knows nothing about--except the addictive hunger of needing his touch.
Magic Bites (Kate Daniels, #1)
Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews -- Kate Daniels (I gave it 4 stars.)
Urban Fantasy
Kate Daniels is a down-on-her-luck mercenary who makes her living cleaning up magical problems. But when Kate’s guardian is murdered, her quest for justice draws her into a power struggle between two strong factions within Atlanta’s magic circles. Pressured by both sides to find the killer, Kate realizes she’s way out of her league—but she wouldn't want it any other way…

Spider's Bite (Elemental Assassin, #1)
Spider's Bite by Jennifer Estep -- Gin Blanco (I gave it 4 stars.)
Urban Fantasy
My name is Gin, and I kill people.
They call me the Spider. I'm the most feared assassin in the South — when I'm not busy at the Pork Pit cooking up the best barbecue in Ashland. As a Stone elemental, I can hear everything from the whispers of the gravel beneath my feet to the vibrations of the soaring Appalachian Mountains above me. My Ice magic also comes in handy for making the occasional knife. But I don't use my powers on the job unless I absolutely have to. Call it professional pride.
Now that a ruthless Air elemental has double-crossed me and killed my handler, I'm out for revenge. And I'll exterminate anyone who gets in my way — good or bad. I may look hot, but I'm still one of the bad guys. Which is why I'm in trouble, since irresistibly rugged Detective Donovan Caine has agreed to help me. The last thing this coldhearted killer needs when I'm battling a magic more powerful than my own is a sexy distraction...especially when Donovan wants me dead just as much as the enemy.
Lover Mine (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #8)
Lover Mine by JR Ward -- Xhex (I gave it 5 stars.)
Paranormal Romance
John Matthew has come a long way since he was found living among humans, his vampire nature unknown to himself and to those around him. After he was taken in by the Brotherhood, no one could guess what his true history was- or his true identity. Indeed, the fallen Brother Darius has returned, but with a different face and a very different destiny. As a vicious personal vendetta takes John into the heart of the war, he will need to call up on both who he is now and who he once was in order to face off against evil incarnate.
Xhex, a symphath assassin, has long steeled herself against the attraction between her and John Matthew. Having already lost one lover to madness, she will not allow the male of worth to fall prey to the darkness of her twisted life. When fate intervenes, however, the two discover that love, like destiny, is inevitable between soul mates.
Angels' Blood (Guild Hunter, #1)
Angel's Blood by Nalini Singh -- Elena Deveraux
Urban Fantasy
Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux knows she is the best- but she does not know if even she is good enough for this job. Hired by the dangerously beautiful archangel Raphael, a being so lethal that no mortal wants his attention, Elena knows failure is not an option—even if the task is impossible.  Because this time, it's not a wayward vamp she has to track. It's an archangel gone bad.The job will put Elena in the midst of a killing spree like no other—and pull her to the razor's edge of passion. Even if the hunt does not destroy her, succumbing to Raphael’s seductive touch just might. For when archangels play, mortals break.
Immortal Rider  (Lords of Deliverance, #2; Demonica, #7)
Immortal Rider by Larissa Ione -- Limos (I gave it 4 stars.)
Paranormal Romance
Sexy, powerful, and immortal, Limos is on a crash course with destiny. She’s been marked as Satan’s bride and her jealous fiancé wants her all to himself. The only way this Horseman can keep herself—and everyone else—safe is to keep her distance. But not even Limos can save herself from the secrets she’s kept . . . or resist the seductive allure of one very brave human.
Arik Wagner knows the saying “love hurts” better than most, yet he never thought stealing a kiss from Limos would land him in Hell. Literally. It takes all his military training to survive the demon torture, but once he’s topside, Arik realizes that the agony has just begun. With the Apocalypse looming and Satan demanding his bride, will Arik and Limos surrender to the desire smoldering between them? Or will giving in to their passion unleash hell on earth?

Dragon Actually (Dragon Kin, #1)
Dragon Actually by G.A Aiken -- Annwyl the Bloody (I gave it 4 stars.)
Fantasy Romance
It's not always easy being a female warrior with a nickname like Annwyl the Bloody. Men tend to either cower in fear - a lot - or else salute. It's true that Annwyl has a knack for decapitating legions of her ruthless brother's soldiers without pausing for breath. But just once it would be nice to be able to really talk to a man, the way, she can talk to Fearghus the Destroyer.
Too bad that Fearghus is a dragon, of the large, scaly and deadly type. With him, Annwyl feels safe - a far cry from the feelings aroused by the hard-bodied, arrogant knight Fearghus has arranged to help train her for battle. With her days spent fighting a man who fill her with fierce, heady desire, and her nights spent in the company of a magical creature who could smite a village just by exhaling, Annwyl is sure life couldn't get any stranger. She's wrong...
Rock Chick (Rock Chick, #1)
Rock Chick by Kristen Ashley -- Indy Savage
Contemporary Romance
Indy Savage, cop's daughter, rock chick and used bookstore owner, has been in love with Lee Nightingale, once bad boy, now the man behind Nightingale Investigations, since she was five years old. No matter what ingenious schemes Indy used to capture his attention, Lee never showed an interest and Indy finally gave up. Now Indy's employee, Rosie, has lost a bag of diamonds and bad guys are shooting at him.When Indy gets involved, Lee is forced to help. Complicating matters, Lee has decided he's interested, Indy's decided she's not. But she can't seem to keep Lee out of her life when she's repeatedly stun gunned, kidnapped and there are car bombs exploding (not to mention she's finding dead bodies). Indy's best bet is to solve the mystery of the diamonds before Lee. Lee's challenge is to keep Indy alive and, at the same time, win back her heart.
Games of Command
Games of Command by Linnea Sinclair -- Captain Tasha Sebastian (I gave it 5 stars.)
Science Fiction Romance
The universe isn’t what it used to be. With the new Alliance between the Triad and the United Coalition, Captain Tasha “Sass” Sebastian finds herself serving under her former nemesis, biocybe Admiral Branden Kel-Paten–and doing her best to hide a deadly past. But when an injured mercenary winds up in their ship’s sick bay–and in the hands of her best friend, Dr. Eden Fynn–Sass’s efforts may be wasted.
Wanted rebel Jace Serafino has information that could expose all of Sass’s secrets, tear the fragile Alliance apart–and end Sass’s career if Kel-Paten discovers them. But the biocybe has something to hide as well, something once thought impossible for his kind to possess: feelings . . . for Sass. Soon it’s clear that their prisoner could bring down everything they once believed was worth dying for–and everything they now have to live for.

UPCOMING THEMES: 
  • Road Romances -- July 9th
  • Virgin Heroes -- July 16th
  • Strong Family Relationships -- July 23rd
  • Returning Soldiers -- July 30th