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When is a River a Virgin? Answer when it is …

Virgin River Book Cover Virgin River
Virgin river #1
Robyn Carr
Fiction, romance, military romance
Mira Books, Mills and Boon
October 22, 2019
384

Welcome back to Virgin River with the book that started it all... Wanted: Midwife/nurse practitioner in Virgin River, population six hundred. Make a difference against a backdrop of towering California redwoods and crystal clear rivers. Rent-free cabin included. When the recently widowed Melinda Monroe sees this ad, she quickly decides that the remote mountain town of Virgin River might be the perfect place to escape her heartache, and to reenergize the nursing career she loves. But her high hopes are dashed within an hour of arriving--the cabin is a dump, the roads are treacherous and the local doctor wants nothing to do with her. Realizing she's made a huge mistake, Mel decides to leave town the following morning. But a tiny baby abandoned on a front porch changes her plans...and former marine Jack Sheridan cements them into place.

The Virgin River is a tributary of the Colorado River in the U.S. states of Utah, Nevada, and … The river is named for Thomas Virgin, a member of the first American party to see it, led by Jedediah Smith in 1826. Smith named it.

I liked this book and thought it a interesting storyline, although a woman moving to a small town after heartbreak is a common theme amongst romance novels.

Especially if the town is very isolated as this gives more opportunity for excitement and crises.  And here we are in the wilds of California with drug growing and lots of woods, wild animals, hunting, shooting and fishing and all the opportunities for stories they bring.

The one thing I would mention is that this series – of which this is the first book in a series of 18(!!) is now also on TV and the TV version is nothing like the book – after episode one.  You can see the novel’s events in the TV version, but tey are much magnified or changed, and no doubt some are in follow on books. So don’t watch TV first!

I thought that the story had some interesting sub-plots and was well written within its genre.

As an English person I would like to point out that some Americans have no idea of the concept of a normal sized house when they think that 1200 square foot is cosy and  cocoon like. This is the size of an average UK 3 bedroomed house…

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Robyn Carr @RCarrWriter.

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How Tall?

The Seduction of Tallchief Book Cover The Seduction of Tallchief
by Doreen Owens Malek
Romance , Women's Fiction
BooksGoSocial
Pub Date 3 Sep 2019

THE SEDUCTION OF TALLCHIEF concerns the criminal pursuit of a multi-millionaire serial child molester, George Walden, who has used his wealth and connections to escape detection for decades. A reluctant, unconventional agent, Jefferson Tallchief, is sent into Walden’s New Jersey mansion to assemble the case against him. The relationship that develops between Walden’s bitter and reclusive daughter, Victoria, and the new hire acting as her driver forms the core of the story. As they get to know one another, their prejudices (he’s Native American and she’s mostly WASP) dissipate and a bond slowly develops between them. While Tallchief works covertly to uncover evidence that will bring Walden to justice, he’s increasingly conflicted about his deceptive role in Victoria’s life. Just when he has a major breakthrough that means he can put Walden in prison for good, Tallchief must deal with a shocking twist that changes the dangerous game entirely. The story builds to a tension filled climax which will determine the future of all the players involved. This riveting blend of suspense and romance makes a compelling, satisfying read.

As the author herself says, there is a certain fascination with a Native American as hero, especially if they look like this author makes them! The archetype that is portrayed of a strong, silent, deep person, with hidden emotions, capable and surprising and loyal.

This is how she writes Tallchief and provides him as a foil to the pale, apparently weak, heroine of the story. Someone he could rescue, cherish and take away from her cage and set her free to flourish.

But it turns out that she has hidden depths too, and is more capable than he imagined.

The father is the villain here, and his crimes are very nasty indeed.

Overall a nicely crafted story but not original in concept even if different in delivery.

And just FYI. This author has written a series of 4 novels earlier in her career about Native American heroes and the storyline is very similar. The heroine is nearly always blonde and pale and from the North, and they are mostly set in Florida. Basically, she writes the same story with slightly different settings and careers and backgrounds, but always with two different ethnicities and cultures at play.

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Daring…

I Dare You b Book Cover I Dare You b
Sam Carrington
Fiction
HarperCollins UK, Avon
29 Nov 2019
416

AN INNOCENT GAME. A SHOCKING CRIME. A COMMUNITY FULL OF SECRETS.   Mapledon, 1989 Two little girls were out playing a game of dares. Only one returned home. The ten-year-old told police what she saw: village loner Bill ‘Creepy’ Cawley dragged her friend into his truck and disappeared. No body was found, but her testimony sent Cawley to prison for murder. An open and shut case, the right man behind bars. The village could sleep safe once again. Now… Anna thought she had left Mapledon and her nightmares behind but a distraught phone call brings her back to face her past. 30 years ago, someone lied. 30 years ago, the man convicted wasn’t the only guilty party. Now he’s out of prison and looking for revenge. The question is, who will he start with?

This was not a story that I got on with. I found it too slow moving even though I attempted it twice. Sorry!

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Curses! guestpost jan

The Cursed Key Book Cover The Cursed Key
(The Cursed Key Trilogy #1)
Miranda Brock, Rebecca Hamilton
Genres: New Adult, Romance, Urban Fantasy
Published by: Evershade Publishing
Publication date: January 14th 2020

A forgotten past, a dark mage, and an unyielding curse. Another team beat free-spirited archaeologist Olivia Perez to the dig of a lifetime, and now she’s left with the choice to wait for scraps or brave a dangerous, dusty tomb in hopes of finding other priceless artifacts. Her reward? A mysterious key she has no idea is cursed. Soon, Olivia realizes she’s brought home more than just an ancient rarity. Malevolent visions begin to plague her. Unnerved by what they reveal, she casts away the key…unknowingly placing it into the waiting hands of a dark mage bent on destruction. Only when a shifter agent from the Paranormal Intelligence and Tracking Organization arrives searching for the key does Olivia realize what a huge mistake she’s made. Forced to team up with the ill-tempered shifter, her journey to reclaim the cursed key leads down a twisting path of dark histories, dangerous magic, and deadly obstacles. But Olivia’s efforts to take back the ancient relic before the dark mage can destroy the lives of humans, shifters, witches, and fae alike are thwarted by her own dark past…and a price steeper than what she’s willing to pay. Fans of Tomb Raider and Ilona Andrews will love the blend of urban fantasy, magical adventure, and paranormal romance in THE CURSED KEY from Miranda Brock and New York Times bestselling author Rebecca Hamilton!

Ten Series To Read If You Enjoy The Cursed Key!

as recommended by the authors

  • Jane Yellowrock Series by Faith Hunter
  • Mercy Thompson Series by Patricia Briggs
  • Demon Days, Vampire Nights Series by K.F. Breene
  • Protected by the Damned and War of the Damned Series by Michael Todd
  • Innkeeper Chronicles Series by Ilona Andrews
  • Sea Fae Series by C.N. Crawford
  • Reign of Blood Trilogy by Becca Blake
  • A Touch of Ink Series by Rachel Rawlings
  • The Keepers Way Series by Miranda Brock
  • Shadows of Salem Series by Rebecca Hamilton and Heather Marie Adkins

Author Bio

New York Times bestselling author Rebecca Hamilton writes urban fantasy and paranormal romance for Harlequin, Baste Lübbe, and Evershade. A book addict, registered bone marrow donor, and indian food enthusiast, she often takes to fictional worlds to see what perilous situations her characters will find themselves in next.

Represented by Rossano Trentin of TZLA, Rebecca has been published internationally, in three languages: English, German, and Hungarian.

Author links:
Website / Facebook / Twitter

From an early age Miranda Brock has always loved fantasy and adventure everything. Since she doesn’t live in a world of enchanting powers, mythical beasts, and things unbelievable she has decided to write about them. (Although, if you happen to see a dragon flying around, do tell her.) Born in southern Illinois, where she still resides with her husband and two children, she grew up running through the woods, playing in creeks, and riding horses. What started out as writing poetry grew into short stories and eventually led to her first novel, Souls Discovered. Miranda lives in the country where she finds inspiration in the simplicity and beauty around her. With the help of a ridiculous amount of coffee and some good music she writes whenever she gets a chance.

Author links:
Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

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Karma means?

Karma's Slow Burn
by Nalini Warriar
Romance
BooksGoSocial
Pub Date 1 Feb 2020

Rafael Henley, star pitcher of the pro-baseball team Sliders, is a single dad of a six-month old baby girl he loves more than life itself. He likes willowy blondes and women who don’t look to him as their protector. Yet here is, lusting after the complete opposite: petite, raven-haired, Karma Huntington with a rose tat running up her neck, brimming with confidence and fiercely independent. But the dark secret Rafael holds in his heart prevents any serious interest in pursuing Karma.

Baseball is one of Karma’s passions, the others being writing and food. Not only does the order of this change with her moods but she could also be doing two of them at the same time. Like writing with food on her face or watching baseball and eating. Real multi-tasking.

Raised by her father and his gang of friends, Karma’s just getting over the death of her husband. It has been three years but to her it feels like yesterday. Time heals, she’s been told. She’s still waiting. Now she has revenge on her mind. She wants to get closer to Rafael to avenge her husband’s death. He was driving the car that killed him. And what better way to do it than to take away the one thing he loves most in the world?

She gets her chance to get closer to Rafe when he stumbles upon her one moonlit night, meditating on the hill looking upon the lake. They both want this one brief encounter and that would be it: a one-night stand deal, which no one actually wants.

As she’s finishing the pictures for her latest article, Rafael’s nanny calls in sick. As he has to leave for New York for a series of games with the Yankees, Karma volunteers to baby-sit Ali. When Rafael gets back from his road trip, he realizes he wants the deal with Karma to be toast.

Karma’s plan to get closer to Rafael is in the works. Everything comes to a screeching halt when Rafael’s baby girl is kidnapped. Nothing, nothing will stop him from getting her back and beating the crap out of whoever is responsible.

Karma’s father and his friends decide to jump in the fray and do some rescuing of their own. Lily is retired, yes, but a decorated police officer. Flatulent Rosy is a seasoned claims investigator. Cross-dressing Trudie is incredibly fit. If they don’t make a great team, then what use are their talents? Just as the rescue gang tumbles in, Rafael marches into the loft where Ali is kept. Karma keeps out of sight as the rescue effort is underway.

Rafael has words with the rescue team, gives them a piece of his very loud mind. He’ll be happy if he never sees them again.

Relieved it was only a ploy to get him back, Rafael and Declan bond. However, from the PI’s files, Rafael discovers Karma has been hiding things from him. He confronts her and accuses her of wanting revenge for the death of her husband. He plans to stay out of her life.

The team is relocating and Rafael has to decide if he wants to move with them. He’s devastated. This on top of Karma’s betrayal! Just when he was beginning to like her a lot! He quits baseball so he can be with Ali and watch her grow up in the house Linus has left him: the house in the woods. He opens a restaurant, which becomes a hit. Rafael cannot avoid Karma. A chance meeting with her after the release of her latest book put things into perspective for him. But Karma’s head is the clouds. Her latest book, a romance, has hit all the lists. She’s immersed in her writing, dazzled with her success and loving every second of it. She’s not ready to fall in love again. Not ready to be distracted. And she wants none of it.

Rafael’s just thinking of lost opportunities when Karma’s father, Alan, and his gang stop for a bite at his restaurant. Alan tells Rafe about Ben and Rafael admits Linus was driving. Alan tells Rafe to go to Karma and let her know that.

With a bit of strawberry and cream, Karma finally lets the past stay in the past and Rafael puts aside his guilty conscience.

Now this was an interesting story about a young sports journalist – female in a world which is more than dominated by male journalists and her slow burn romance with a baseball player. Slow burn because of who they are and what he has going on in his personal life – that is a very small baby!

I found the story credible and engaging and enjoyed Karma and her delight in her Indian heritage and her father’s friends were a hoot… clearly all needed much more to do in their retirement.

The author is happy to cross some ‘lines’ about race and sexuality that many authors shy away from from and this is refreshing especially as it was just added in as a normal part of the story. No big deal.

Overall a good read.

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