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Please be quiet!

Hush Book Cover Hush
AM Salinger
contemporary fiction, romance, Adult,
(16 Oct. 2018)

Tom Sutherland is an arrogant prick. There, I said it. Okay, so he’s also my assistant and I couldn’t survive without him, but that doesn’t make him less of an irritating bastard — Lana 

Lana Keele is a witch. A beautiful, frustrating witch placed on this earth to torment me. Yeah, she’s my boss, but she’s still the most maddening creature I’ve ever had the misfortune to cross paths with — Tom

When Lana Keele, president of Keele Industries and only surviving heir to business tycoon Oliver Keele, wakes up in her devil-of-an-assistant’s bed after a drunken night out, she fears the worst. That is, until prissy Mr. Perfect Tom Sutherland declares that she’s the last woman he’d ever want to sleep with.

After surviving four years in the company of the infuriating woman he’d lusted after since his teens, Tom has had just about enough of the unholy siren that is Lana, especially when she turns up inebriated on his doorstep one night and demands sex. Convinced that Lana will never return his affections, Tom decides that it’s high time to get over his unrequited love.

Except Lana doesn’t quite seem to agree with this plan. Not after she sees him with another woman. Not after she confronts him about it. And most definitely not after he succumbs to temptation and kisses her.

As they finally ignite the fire that has burned so long between them, Tom cannot help but be certain that for Lana, this is just about sex. Will he be satisfied with only having the body of the woman he loves and not possess her heart? Or will Lana convince Tom that she truly means to give him her everything?


This was an adult themed book that I quite enjoyed, but overall found it too short. I never quite worked out what the promise was that was made and why the Uncles were allowed to run the company into the ground.

So, for me, there were some obvious plot holes, that a longer book could have explored and which would have enhanced the story. Without a good story you just get mild pornographic literature – this book just missed that category, but came close.

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Books/book review/fiction/Romance

Female Astronomers in the 19th Century

The Governess Game Book Cover The Governess Game
(Girl Meets Duke, #2)
Tessa Dare
Regency romance, historical, humour
August 20, 2018

After her livelihood slips through her fingers, Alexandra Mountbatten takes on an impossible post: transforming a pair of wild orphans into proper young ladies. However, the girls don’t need discipline. They need a loving home. Try telling that to their guardian, Chase Reynaud. The ladies of London have tried―and failed―to make him settle down. Somehow, Alexandra must reach his heart . . . without risking her own.

The infamous rake

Like any self-respecting libertine, Chase lives by one rule: no attachments. When a stubborn little governess tries to reform him, he decides to prove he can’t be tamed. But Alexandra is more than he bargained for: clever, perceptive, passionate. She refuses to see him as a lost cause. Soon the walls around Chase’s heart are crumbling . . . and he’s in danger of falling, hard.

This is a really interesting book as not only is it well written it contains, for us in this year of celebrating Women’s Suffrage in the UK, a good reminder that women have been working in scientific fields long before the history books remind us.
Mary Somerville, for instance, born in 1780, was jointly the first of two female astronomers, the other being Caroline Herschel, who were invited to join the Royal Astronomical Society in 1835. Caroline Herschel was awarded their Gold Medal in 1828.
This story brings this science to life and demonstrates the difficulty women had to be taught such sciences and to have a career that matched their intellectual abilities.
We did have a typical love story alongside this of course.

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Books/book review/Fantasy/fiction

Love out of a Bottle

The Jilted Jinn Book Cover The Jilted Jinn
(The Deadicated Matchmaker Book #2)
SE Babin
paranormal, mythology, romance humour

Katie Harper is in a self-imposed dating drought. After getting dumped at the altar a record three times after she refused to continue granting wishes, she’s done with the men in Midnight Cove.

Done, that is, until her best friend secretly makes a dating tape for her and sends it to the dating agency. Immediately after, men start knocking on her door. Despite her friend giving out her home address and the mass of weirdos begging for her hand in marriage, Katie can’t help but be secretly flattered.

But the man currently restoring her historical home has other plans for her once he realizes what’s happening. And he isn’t going to let her go without a fight.

How to find your mate in a town of paranormals – why use a dating agency. Speciesm not permitted.

SE Babin always writes a good humorous novel with great heroines – you always wish you could speak the way they do! Such great turns of phrase and very snarky.

In this book you find that Jinn really do need to spend time in their bottles to rest – but not that often – and when they are their bottle they are unable to protect themselves – so they must keep themselves well hidden.

They can grant wishes of course – if they want to – unless you just happen to know the very specific turn of phrase that can compel them.

So new information here about a race we know little about. But then we learn a lot in this series…


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RomCom Tropes

Checked Into Love Book Cover Checked Into Love
Bachelorette Party) (Volume 2)
Rochelle Paige
Fiction, romantic comedy
Rochelle Paige
March 28, 2017

Cecily Thompson swore off men a year ago. There’s only been one man who’s tempted her to end the drought… hockey hottie Jason Campbell. He had her rethinking her stance on dating, but a misunderstanding quickly sent her running in the opposite direction. Jason hasn’t been able to get Cecily off his mind. Not a single night has gone by without dreams of the fiery redhead he met in a bar months ago. When he finally sees her again at a friend’s bachelorette party, he’s ready to do what it takes to keep her right where she belongs… by his side.

I recently saw a TV programme where the presenter was analysing the various RomCom movies and he mentioned Tropes.

Now this was a term I’d never heard of before, so decided to look it up and see if it made sense when applied to novels that were RomComs too – and it does…

So here are the Tropes for you, and you can then see how they apply in this particular book and any others as you read them.

  1. The Flawed Protagonist Seeking Salvation

The atom of the rom-com is the protagonist. The bulk of romantic comedies are predicated upon the indisputable charm of an unrefined woman. Perhaps she’s an impassioned lawyer in frumpy clothes  or a Prince-loving sex worker with a heart of gold who can’t tell her salad fork from her dinner fork.  Beneath that tough facade, you’ll find a vulnerable soul looking for her match, even if she doesn’t know that’s what she needs.  Love absolves financial snafus.

Here the female character is a PR person.

  1. The Meet-Cute

Now our woman has to meet her future mate. According to The American PresidentWhile You Were SleepingJerry MaguireWhat Women WantMiss Congeniality, and quite a few others, your best chance to find love is at work. The work is actually secondary to the dating possibilities. This is a particularly convenient storytelling device — dating coworkers is historically tricky in the real world. The nexus of plausibility and relatability is the perfect point of departure for rom-coms. Maybe there’s an inherent power structure to overcome. Maybe the guy has to go back on his word, thereby submarining both professional and personal connections. Maybe the relationship has to be a secret. Maybe they’re work adversaries who find love in a hopeless place. And all of these possible plots don’t even account for the bait-and-switch in rom-coms where the workplace relationship isn’t even the pairing we’re rooting for.

In this novel the guy is a Hockey player and she has sworn off them due to past bad mistakes. The relationship needs to be kept a secret from her boss as otherwise she would be pressured to use him for business purposes.

  1. The False Start

If the relationship is founded upon an unlikely circumstance, it only follows that there would be at least one moment of dissolution. There’s such a huge gulf to bridge! Ultimately, the couple will find its rhythm two-thirds of the way through the movie. By this point, the best and least predictable elements of the movie are over. The last section is a perfunctory 25- to 35-minute period during which the couple we have already fallen for realize they’ve fallen for each other. More time should probably be dedicated to understanding how these people forgive each other. No one would fault these people if they needed some time for reflection.

Yes, there is a problem to be resolved here in this book – otherwise there really wouldn’t be a good story would there?

  1. The Grand Epiphany, and the Grand Declaration

After the relationship temporarily stalls when one party makes an idiotic mistake, he or she who commits the error suddenly realizes that they cannot be without the other. As soft pop music plays, the epiphany strikes. This is when the movie’s momentum picks up again. The long autumn of the couple’s separation is coming to an end. We can feel the reconciliation coming. It’s incumbent upon the aggressor to assess his own loneliness, inevitably leading to the realization that he had been mistaking general discontent for a specific void. Finally aware that the void disappeared while the hapless woman was in his life, he has to run out immediately to win back the love of his life.

The grand epiphany is essential because it gives way to the final act: the grand declaration, arguably the apex of all rom-coms and the greater world of cinema. The elite rom-coms include a monologue a 14-year-old girl will want to memorize with the hope that something similar may be uttered to her one day, or that she’ll have the chance to deliver such a soliloquy.

So we reach the happy ending.

Now you may be saying that I didn’t enjoy the book, well I did, but once you realise just how much of a formula there is to a RomCom,  you, or me, in this case, will start looking for a deviation from the norm. And, I’m afraid that there really wasn’t in this book. The style of writing was as you would expect and there were no surprises or unexpected events.

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Death helps romance

The Nerdy Necromancer Book Cover The Nerdy Necromancer
The Deadicated Matchmaker Book 1
S E Babin
contemporary fiction, romance, humour, fantasy

Helen Reaper has a weird relationship with the dead. As in she can bring anyone or anything back to life, so she’s constantly bombarded by people begging her to restore their loved ones, their pet fish, that cute girl who fell off a building while taking a selfie. Super. Annoying. So Helen becomes a necessary introvert and a homebody, choosing to absorb herself in books instead of real life.

The Deadication Dating Agency, the mysterious matchmaking service in her town of Midnight Cove, comes to her in the form of a mysterious letter and a cute little puppy.

They know someone who’s already dead who won’t mind her talent one little bit.

Can a woman who raises the dead find a love that stays alive?

SE Banin writes funny stories about romance with heroines who are a little bit dotty

(and which I find fun to read as a result)

and in this book she is nerdy and with a strange ability. Necromancer with a difference, she can bring back a person or creature. Make them alive again.

This is not something you want to advertise too widely as you will get bombarded with people who want to bring back dead pets and people whether for love or revenge…

Thus her dating life has suffered… but a Dating Agency has her in their sights… and so the story begins. They want to help her find her Soulmate and….

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