Sunday, November 04, 2012

Just One Of The Guys - Kristan Higgans

Book Blurb:
Being one of the guys isn't all it's cracked up to be…

So when journalist Chastity O'Neill returns to her hometown, she decides it's time to start working on some of those feminine wiles. Two tiny problems: #1—she's five feet eleven inches of rock-solid girl power, and #2—she's cursed with four alpha-male older brothers.

While doing a story on local heroes, she meets a hunky doctor and things start to look up. Now there's only one problem: Trevor Meade, her first love and the one man she's never quite gotten over—although he seems to have gotten over her just fine.

Yet the more time she spends with Dr. Perfect, the better Trevor looks. But even with the in-your-face competition, the irresistible Trevor just can't seem to see Chastity as anything more than just one of the guys….

In My Own Words:
Chastity isn't your normal "girl next door", she is almost 6 foot tall, and takes her work outs very seriously which takes her out of the petite category.  When a chance comes for her to move back to her hometown, she takes it with the decision to use the opportunity to work on being more girlie.

Trevor Meade is her first love and also a surrogate brother and best friend to all, not to mention a hunky doctor.  While doing a story on local heros, things start to look like she might get her man.  The only problem is while she is still madly in love with him, he seems to have moved along fine.  How does she make him see her as a woman, not just one of the guys?

I had a really hard time getting in to this story, but I am really glad that I stuck it out.  I really enjoyed all of the relationships in this book.  It all seemed so...real.  I highly recommend this story for anyone looking for a cute contemp.

All Summer Long - Susan Mallery

Book Blurb:
Former underwear model turned entrepreneur Clay Stryker has loved, tragically lost and vowed that he'll never risk his heart again. After making his fortune, the youngest of the rugged Stryker brothers returns to Fool's Gold, California, to put down roots on a ranch of his own. But he's frustrated to discover that even in his hometown, people see him only for his world-famous…assets.

Firefighter Chantal (Charlie) Dixon grew up an ugly duckling beside her delicately beautiful mother, a feeling reinforced long ago by a man who left soul-deep scars. Now she has good friends, a solid job and the itch to start a family—yet she can't move toward the future while she's haunted by painful memories.

Clay finds an unexpected ally, and unexpected temptation, in tomboyish Charlie, the only person who sees beyond his dazzling good looks to the real man beneath. But when Charlie comes to him with an indecent proposal, will they be able to overcome their pasts and find a love that lasts beyond one incredible summer?

In My Own Words:
What does a former underwear model do when he retires?  He heads to Fools Gold to start a life with this family and a ranch of his own, with ideas of his own.  What he doesn't expect is to find he is attracted to the town tom-boy, firefighter.  Since losing the love of his life, he has long stated he would never risk his heart again, but can Charlie change that way of thinking?

Charlie comes from a life no one can understand.  A famous mother that wants nothing more than to mold Charlie in to her own image, only to suffer disappointment when Charlie has no talent and isn't as attractive as a mother would want.  Coming to Fools Gold was the best decision Charlie ever made.  She has friends, a life and a job she loves.  When she comes to Clay with a proposal, and needs his help in a very intimate way, she is afraid she has lost her marbles completely.  To throw gas on that fire, dear old mom shows up and wants a Hallmark reunion.

Notable Quote:
"We're trying a new salad.  It's seasonal, with apples and fried chicken. You can get it with grilled chicken, but then I'll pretty much thing less of you. I'm just saying."

The Fools Gold series has had some hits and misses for me and this was in the hit column.  I loved that Clay took Charlie up on her proposal and their relationship grew slowly, not only romantic but also as friends.  Being able to see Clay's brother's and mom a bit, I admit, was a bonus.  I adored how the author didn't just throw the mother in there and have Charlie and her have a lovable moment and all was better, it was a struggle on both parts which made it way more real.  Can't wait for little sis' book, gonna be an explosion.

Danger Next Door - Katie Reus

Book Blurb:
After an explosion leaves detective Grant Caldwell scarred he quits his job and tries to hide from his well-meaning family while he heals. When Belle Manikas, a beautiful new neighbor, moves in next door with problems of her own he finds himself drawn to her even while he tells himself she’s nothing but trouble. Even though he knows he’d never have a chance with a woman like her—not with his disfigurement—he can’t stay away.

Thanks to severe health problems as a child Belle grew up sheltered and smothered by her loving, if overbearing, family. Now that she’s finally out on her own she plans to wring everything she can out of life. When she sets her sights on her brooding neighbor nothing can stop her from getting him into bed—until a madman fixates on her.

With Grant now working for Red Stone Security, he sees it as his duty to protect her at all costs. Unfortunately a violent criminal is stalking Belle and will stop at nothing until he’s destroyed her.

In My Own Words:
When Grant's new neighbor is moving in, he does the only thing he thinks he can do, he watches.  He knows he would have no place in the beauty's life and decides if the only thing he can have is from a distance, he would enjoy.  When Grant is about to take a swim, he hears a loud disturbance at his new neighbor's house, he can't help but investigate and what he finds leaves him pissed and on edge.  As the strange break-ins and harassment keeps coming at Belle, he wonders if she is nothing but trouble or worth her weight in gold.  He knows that he enjoys his time with her, and she sees passed his scars to the real him, but is it enough?

Belle grew up loved by all, moving in a new home, should be an exciting time but with a family friend not taking no for an answer and strange things happening all around her, she feels safe in the presence of her secretive neighbor.

When a crazy man decides Belle is the way to get back at Grant, he will stop at nothing to see his mission through, no matter the cost.  Can Grant and Red Stone figure it out in time?

This is the second book in the Red Stone Security series and I really liked this one.  I wasn't all that thrilled with the first book, but I am really glad I didn't give up on the series.  I enjoyed the chemistry between Grant and Belle, and the banter that seemed to be ever so present when they were around each other.  I am very much looking forward to the 3rd book.

One Night With a Hero - Laura Kaye

Book Blurb:
He wants just one night…

After growing up with an abusive, alcoholic father, Army Special Forces Sgt. Brady Scott vowed never to marry or have kids. Sent stateside to get his head on straight—and his anger in check—Brady’s looking for a distraction. He finds it in his beautiful new neighbor’s one-night-only offer for hot sex, but her ability to make him forget is addictive. Suddenly, Brady’s not so sure he can stay away.

…what they need is each other.

Orphaned as a child, community center director Joss Daniels swore she’d never put herself in a position to be left behind again, but she can’t deny herself one sizzling night with the sexy soldier who makes her laugh and kisses her senseless. When Joss discovers she’s pregnant, Brady’s rejection leaves her feeling abandoned. Now, they must overcome their fears before they lose the love and security they’ve found in each other, but can they let go of the past to create a future together?

In My Own Words:
While trying to out run his inner demons, running has become his life line.  When he ends a run in the park to see a stunning woman gazing out in to nothingness, his first response was to leave it alone, he doesn't do relationships, but breaking his own rule, he ambles over to cheer her up.  One thing leads to another, and they end up together when he walked her to her truck.

Dealing with demons of her own, Joss decides to not to feel slighted when the stranger doesn't ask for her number.  Waking up to find the stranger is her new neighbor brings issues of its own.  When the chips are down, she wonders if he will ever be able to see her as an equal and as someone he could share his life with.  When the strip turns pink, she gets her answer, but not the one she wanted.  Now it is up to Brady to change her mind.

I enjoyed the interaction with Brady and Joss, and even Brady and his family, what I didn't enjoy was how he professed his love within like a week.  I felt the time tables in the book were way off.  Brady's reaction to his father's passing was understandable, even his reaction to the pregnancy, but I find it hard to believe that he had an epiphany immediately and decided he wanted the baby he swore ALL his life he didn't want.  I just found parts of this story very rushed and not completely thought out.