REVIEW: Future Imperfect by K. Ryer Breese

Title: Future Imperfect
Author: K. Ryer Breese
Format: ARC, 310 pages
Genre: Paranormal YA
Source: LibraryThing Early Reviewers
Published: April 26, 2011 by St. Martin’s Griffin

Ade Patience can see the future and it's destroying his life. When the seventeen-year-old Mantlo High School student knocks himself unconscious, he can see days and decades into his own future. Ade's the best of Denver's "divination" underground and eager to join the heralded Mantlo Diviners, a group of similarly enabled teens. Yet, unlike the Diviners, Ade Patience doesn't see the future out of curiosity or good will; Ade gives himself concussions because he's addicted to the high, the Buzz, he gets when he breaks the laws of physics. And while there have been visions he's wanted to change, Ade knows the Rule: You can't change the future, no matter how hard you try.

His memory is failing, his grades are in a death spiral, and both Ade's best friend and his shrink are begging him to stop before he kills himself. Ade knows he needs to straighten-out. Luckily, the stunning Vauxhall Rodolfo has just transferred to Mantlo and, as Ade has seen her in a vision two years previously, they're going to fall in love. It's just the motivation Ade needs to kick his habit. Only things are a bit more complicated. Vauxhall has an addiction of her own, and, after a a vision in which he sees Vauxhall's close friend, Jimmy, drown while he looks on seemingly too wasted to move, Ade realizes that he must break the one rule he's been told he can't.

The pair must overcome their addictions and embrace their love for each other in order to do the impossible: change the future.

Why I Read this Book: The premise for Future Imperfect caught my attention. Ade possesses an interesting supernatural power of seeing the future when knocked unconscious. Things are pretty crazy for Ade because he purposely gets himself knocked out, by any means necessary, to get the high he feels when he’s unconscious and on a future-glimpsing trip.

What I Liked: This book had an interesting premise but the book went downhill once I learned what Vauxhall needed to do in order to use her own unique supernatural power.

What I Didn’t Like: One major issue I had with the book was Vauxhall’s character and her supernatural power. I was disturbed by it. I can’t explain any further without SPOILERS so I’m going to leave that decision up to you. Consider yourself warned.

I wasn’t feeling the connection between Ade and Vauxhall. He originally saw her 2 years ago in one of his glimpses into his future and has been in love with her ever since. Even when he finally ‘meets’ her in the present time, I didn’t feeling any kind of chemistry between them. Vauxhall is so out there (again, it has to do with her supernatural power) that I don’t understand why Ade would still want to be with her. I found Ade to be pretty pathetic for staying in love with Vauxhall.

The written conversations between Ade and the different ‘specialists’ he contacted were one-sided. The reader only gets to read the letters Ade writes, non of the responses (even though you can tell in Ade’s follow up letters that he got one). You can sort of get an idea of what the specialists had to say about Ade’s inquiries but it felt incomplete and I don’t feel the letters were substantial to the story.

Overall Impression: Future Imperfect was not a book for me. I’m actually quite surprised that I finished reading it but there was a part of me, albeit a small part, that wanted to know how a particular part was going to play out between Ade and Jimi. I was so completely disgusted with Vauxhall’s character and her supernatural power that it ruined any chance of me liking this book.

The Book Vixen’s Rating:

1 Frog

REVIEW & GIVEAWAY [CLOSED]: When You Dare by Lori Foster

Title: When You Dare (Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor, #1)
Author: Lori Foster
Format: eARC
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Source: NetGalley
Published: May 1, 2011 by HQN Books

Professional mercenary Dare Macintosh lives by one hard and fast rule: business should never be personal. If a cause appeals to him and the price is right, he'll take the mission he's offered. But then the lovely Molly Alexander asks him to help her track down the men who'd had her kidnapped—and for the first time, Dare's tempted to combine work with pleasure.

Fiercely independent, Molly vows to trust no one until she's uncovered the truth. Could the enemy be her powerful estranged father? The ex-fiancé who still holds a grudge? Or the not-so-shy fan of her bestselling novels? As the danger heats up around them, the only anchor Molly has is Dare himself. But what she feels for him just might be the most frightening thing of all….

Why I Read this Book: I hadn’t read a book by Lori Foster before so when I saw When You Dare on NetGalley, and saw that it was a romantic suspense read, I decided to give it a try. And boy am I glad I did!

What I Liked: Dare was on a rescue mission and rescues Molly as well. It’s clear that Molly wasn’t kidnapped for the same reason the other girls were so Molly hires Dare to find out who had her kidnapped and why. The author had me in suspense all the way up to the very end. I couldn’t put my Kindle down!

It was instant attraction for me with Dare. From page one, I knew I was going to like the Alpha mercenary. The pace of Molly’s relationship with Dare was conceivable; it wasn’t love at first site. Dare had a job to do and he did it. I also liked some of the secondary characters as well. Chris was funny and witty and I can’t wait to read more about Trace.

I am over-the-moon thrilled that When You Dare is part of a 4-book series!  The next book, Trace of Fever, is Trace’s book. We meet him in When You Dare as Dare’s colleague. Trace was more of a background character that we don’t see too much of so I can’t wait to get to know him better in the next book. And the third book, Savor the Danger, is Alani’s book. She’s another character that we meet briefly in When You Dare. I’m all smiles over here now. What’s even more exiting is that these books are coming out back-to-back. I just LOVE when that happens!

What I Didn’t Like: Molly was a little too calm after all that had happened to her. Thank goodness she wasn’t a damsel in distress but I would have expected a little more emotion from her. She’s one tough lady! It really bugged me that she didn’t listen to Dare when he told her to do something for her own protection.

The Adrian and Sally scene was a bit….weird. That entire circumstance was weird. Thank goodness it was brief.

I didn’t really get the antagonist's motive. It’s explained in the book but I didn’t feel that the reasons things were done to Molly were on level with the motive. It was a bit extreme.

Overall Impression: When You Dare is a great romantic suspense read that will capture you attention from page one. And once you start reading, you won’t be able to put this book down. I can’t wait to read the rest of this series!


The Book Vixen’s Rating:

4 Frogs


Thanks to Media Muscle, one lucky winner will receive a paperback copy of When You Dare by Lori Foster!!

  • Giveaway open to US and Canada residents.
  • Comments are appreciated, however, you must fill out the form below in order to enter the giveaway.
  • Please read the Contest/Giveaway Policy for complete list of rules.
  • You have until midnight (your time) on Thursday, May 12, 2011 to enter.

Good luck to all who enter!

REVIEW: One Night by Debbie Macomber

Title: One Night
Author: Debbie Macomber
Format: eBook
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: library
Published: August 1994 by HarperTorch

Love is on the air

Morning deejay Carrie Jamison spouts the quirky brand of comedy Kansas City loves to wake up to. She's skyrocketing in the ratings, and her quick wit has won her the admiration of everyone at KUTE radio—except Kyle Harris. A serious, no frills newscaster, Kyle disapproved of Carrie's antics, and isn't afraid to broadcast his feelings to her or anyone else. When the tension between them approaches a meltdown, the station manager delivers a shocking ultimatum: Carrie and Kyle must make nice or end up on the unemployment line.

With so much at stake, how hard could it be to give peace a chance? As they both open up to the possibility, they are startled to discover how simple it is. And, even more surprising, how quickly the warmth of friendship can flare into the splendors of love.

Why I Read this Book: I had only read one other book by this author, Hannah’s List (my review), and I really enjoyed it. I liked the characters and the developing love story. It was a heart felt read and I knew I wanted to read more by this author.

What I Liked: One Night was a fun and humorous read. I love reading romance novels where the romance starts of with tension between the hero and heroine. There was definitely some thick tension between Carrie and Kyle. They’re constantly bumping heads and just can’t seem to get along. But then it starts causing problems at the station they both work at so now they need to learn to get along or find new jobs.

Debbie Macomber totally caught me off guard and surprised the hell out of me with the steamy love scenes in this book! I’ve only read one other book by her and let me just say that the loves scenes, they were pretty much non-existent. I thought, okay, it’s not the author’s style to write steamy love scenes and I can appreciate that. After all, I read Nicholas Sparks’ novels and we know he doesn’t write out heated love scenes. But in One Night, Debbie Macomber spiced it up! I had to check the author of the book a few times to make sure that I was indeed reading a Debbie Macomber novel. No complaints, believe you me, just a bit surprising. Which makes me wonder, how many of her other novels also have steamy scenes? If you know of any, please let me know.

What I Didn’t Like: During an certain situation in the book, I thought to myself how do these people NOT have cell phones? I didn’t get it. I didn’t realize until I was typing up this review that this book was originally released in 1994 – before cell phones hit the population in the masses. Makes sense but it’s something I wish I had realized while I was reading the book because I just couldn’t get over it. I had thought this book was a newer release because I recently saw it at Target. The storyline definitely would have been different if there were cell phones in the picture.

You can’t tell by just reading the blurb but there’s a bit of mystery and suspense going on in this book. In a case like this, I wish there would have been at least a little bit of a hint of the mystery/suspense element in the blurb so I know what to expect because it felt like it came out of no where.

Overall Impression: One Night was a fun, light read that goes by fast. The book didn’t completely meet my expectations but I’m definitely intrigued enough to read more by Debbie Macomber.

The Book Vixen’s Rating:

3 Frogs

REVIEW: As You Wish by Gabi Stevens

Title: As You Wish (Time of Transition, #2)
Author: Gabi Stevens
Format: eARC
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Source: review copy from author
Published: April 26, 2011 by Tor Books

Regina Scott, known as Reggie, has made a successful life for herself despite her lack of magical powers. She is content to live out her life as a Groundling until the outgoing fairy godmothers tell her she’s the second new replacement. In the space of a few days, she faces a curse, a plot to overthrow the Arcani world, and an entirely too enthusiastic mother. And she doesn’t know which will be the most difficult to deal with. Can Reggie balance trust, magic, and danger and still find the happiness she deserves?

Why I Read this Book: After reading The Wish List (read review here), I couldn’t wait to continue the journey of discovering the other two new Fairy Godmothers. I was excited to find out what was going to happen in the Arcani world and to see what was going on with Kristin.

What I Liked: I love these characters (well, the good ones). I enjoyed reading Reggie’s story as much as I did Kristin’s. It was fun to watch as she was trying on her magic skills. I knew there was something fishy going on with Nate’s character but I was interested to see how it was going to play out. Jonathan was a bit too perfect at first impression but proved to have his own flaws. The three original Fairy Godmothers are hilarious though we don’t see much of them in this book.

I’m glad that Kirstin and Tennyson made a few appearances in this book, though I would have liked to have read more about them. I guess I’m not completely ready to let them go yet.

I really like this cover! More so than the cover for the first book, which I felt was too YA. This cover is much more suitable.

What I Didn’t Like: There were parts revolving around Nate’s character that were a bit predictable. I knew what the end result was going to be but I was still interested to see how things were going to get to that point.

Overall Impression: While I liked The Wish List, I enjoyed As You Wish even more. I ended up enjoying this series more than I thought I would. Now, I can’t wait for the release of Wishful Thinking, the third book in the trilogy. The Wish List and As You Wish are great books to read when you in the mood for some magical, light and fun paranormal romance. There’s a bit of mystery, suspense and romance mixed in.

The Book Vixen’s Rating:

4 Frogs

Side note: It was touching to find out that the author’s own daughter was the inspiration for Joy’s character. Joy’s character has Downs Syndrome. While the author’s daughter doesn’t have Downs Syndrome herself, she does have an Intellectual and Developmental Disability (IDD) that hasn’t been diagnosed. For the five years following publication, the author will pledge 10% of her royalties from this book to Best Buddies in support of their programs.

REVIEW: The Wish List by Gabi Stevens

Title: The Wish List (Time of Transition, #1)
Author: Gabi Stevens
Format: paperback, 371 pages
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Source: library
Published: May 2010 by Tor Books

In the magical world, a TIME OF TRANSITION occurs every seventy years. Old Council members step down and new ones are chosen; but the biggest change is the appointment of the new Fairy Godmothers. Unlike their role in storybooks, Fairy Godmothers protect the barrier between the magical and the human world.

Three new godmothers discover their destinies in this three book series. Only this time the Transition won’t be smooth.

Why I Read this Book: Let me start off by saying this: Never judge a book by its cover. Or by its blurb for that matter. When I first saw the cover for The Wish List, I thought it was a YA novel. There’s lots of pink and sparkles going on, a super cute swirly font and it has a whimsical feel to it. Now, there’s nothing wrong with YA. I love YA! But I’m not a big fan of fairies so what I do read, that involves fairies, is very minimal. I need a strong romantic element to carry me through it. And there wasn’t any hint of romance in the blurb. So if The Wish List was a YA novel, I probably would not have picked it up. But alas, I finally discovered that it is indeed an adult novel and decided to give it a go. And I’m glad I did.

What I Liked: The Wish List was a fun, cute and light read. And there was a bit of suspense that kept me interested. Kristin and Tennyson are both likeable characters. Kristin didn’t just jump into the role of being a Fairy Godmother without hesitation. She discounted it and she questioned it and that made it conceivable.

There’s romance in the book! Like I mentioned earlier, I need a strong romantic element is most books I read. What can I say? I love reading romance. Kristin’s relationship with her leading man progressed at a good pace. I’m glad they didn’t fall in love right off the bat. She was a bit reluctant to follow his guidance so there was a bit of bickering at first. She was more concerned about this new-to-her world she now belongs to, and rightfully so.

What I Didn’t Like: It was a bit weird that there were no set rules for performing magic. Magical commands varied from person to person. So while one person would say “Veni” to make an object come to them, someone else might say something completely different.

There wasn’t much said of the Council; the Council remains to be a bit of a mystery. I am hoping that there will be some light shed on the Council world in the next book. I’m interested to know more and to find out what’s going to happen with Kristin.

Overall Impression: The Wish List was a light and fun read with a cute romance. Nothing dark or heavy. There were a few loose ends which made me eager to read the next book, As You Wish.


The Book Vixen’s Rating:

3 1/2 Frogs

REVIEW: Sweet as Sin by Inez Kelley

Title: Sweet as Sin
Author: Inez Kelley
Format: eBook
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: NetGalley
Published: January 2011 by Carina Press

She was made for sin. Sin was something he knew intimately.

John Murphy is tormented by nightmares. A bestselling young-adult author, he writes the ultimate fantasy: stories where good always triumphs. He knows better. His past has shown him the worst in people—and in himself. When he moves next door to the sexy, vibrant Livvy—a woman completely unlike his usual one-night stands—he’s driven to explore every curve of her delicious body.

Pastry chef Livvy knows that giving in to the temptation that is John Murphy won’t lead to anything permanent, but she deserves a passionate summer fling. John discovers she’s as sweet as the confections she bakes while Livvy slowly unravels his secrets. But what will happen when she uncovers them all?

Why I Read this Book: Sweet as Sin is a book I read specifically because it was recommended to me as a ‘great emotional read’. If I were to have come across this book on my own and read the blurb, truth be told, I probably wouldn’t have picked it up and I would have seriously missed out – big time. Huge! Like the ladies in that Rodeo shop that turned Julia Roberts down in Pretty Woman HUGE. I love me a good emotional read (it’s why I read Nicholas Sparks’ novels) so I jumped on this like it was the last train coming out of the station.

What I Liked: The characters in Sweet as Sin felt so real and raw. John is quite a complex character. He’s a broken soul that comes from a tormented past. He’s so far broken that the shattered pieces still need to be put back together. He’s seems simple at first but once Livvy gets to know him, he’s tough to crack. I found myself constantly wondering if Livvy was going to give up on him.

I love, love, LOVE how the author incorporated John’s YA novel into this novel. The connection was powerful, seamless and, for me, an important facet to the main storyline. It was brilliant!

Sweet as Sin is a deep and intense read. No light reading material here. You’ll be completely engaged the whole time through. I was reading this one during my daily treadmill workout and let me just tell you how hard and awkward it was to be crying while on the treadmill. And I’m not talking about stray tears here. Full blown on sobbing people.

What I Didn’t Like: I’m an epilogue fanatic. For most of the romance novels I read, I look forward to (and need) an epilogue. I need that final bit of closure for the main characters. It’s nice to know that they get their HEA but I need to know how they’re doing in the future. In Sweet as Sin, there’s an epilogue but I wasn’t satisfied with what I got. It was an interesting epilogue but I didn’t get the closure I needed. I would have liked to have seen what was actually in the epilogue put at the end of the last chapter (because it was good to know how that story arc ended as well as the main story did) and the epilogue give me what’s going on a few years from where the story left off.

Overall Impression: Sweet as Sin is the first book I’ve read by this author. Inez Kelley blew me away with this book. Have the tissues ready when you pick up Sweet as Sin. There are demons (of the metaphorical kind), broken characters and lots of emotional issues and baggage in this one. Like I mentioned, I love good emotional reads; it’s why I read Nicholas Sparks novels. But one thing this book had that Sparks’ books don’t is love scenes. Hot, sweltering love scenes.


The Book Vixen’s Rating:

4 1/2 Frogs

REVIEW: Trust in Advertising

Title: Trust in Advertising
Author: Victoria Michaels
Format: eARC
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: review copy from publisher
Published: July 2010 by Omnific Publishing

Lexi White finds herself at a crossroads. After putting everything on hold to care for her ailing father, it’s finally time for her to start living her life again. An exciting new job holds the promise of a fresh start, until she comes face to face with someone from her past who has always stopped her dead in her tracks, and who evidently still has the power to make her forget her own name. This time around, Lexi’s a grown woman who refuses to back away from her dreams, even if it requires working with her old high school crush. Side by side. Every day. Will he end up being her downfall or exactly what she needs?

Vincent doesn’t even remember Lexi from high school, but he begins to take notice when the fiery young woman is hired as his new assistant. Quickly, Lexi turns his world upside down and becomes an invaluable addition not only to his team, but to his life. Having learned a few hard lessons about trust in the past, Vincent is reluctant to let down his guard, especially when it appears that someone is out to sabotage his family’s advertising agency. Professionally, they are dynamite together, but when sparks fly between them personally, will Vincent let lies and jealousy ruin everything between them, or will he finally learn not only how to love, but ultimately trust…in advertising?

Victoria Michaels once again delivers a can’t-put-it-down novel loaded with engaging characters, cheeky dialogue, and powerful emotions. Trust in Advertising is a cleverly woven tale about two people getting to know each other and ultimately themselves.

Why I Read this Book: I loved Boycotts & Barflies. It was hilarious, sweet, fun and all-in-all, a great contemporary romance novel. When I heard of Trust in Advertising and read the blurb, I knew this was the book for me.  

What I Liked: The author’s writing style is smooth and fluid. It’s easy to fall into the story and have half a day wiz right by you. I read this book in 3 days and the only reason it took me that long was because it was my treadmill read. Otherwise, I would have gobbled it up in a day.

The flirtatious banter between Vincent and Lexi was hilarious. It was a fun story to read. The chemistry between them was undeniable and I was rooting for Vincent and Lexi all the way.

What I Didn’t Like: This novel was a bit too long. The storyline seemed a bit drawn out. There was a moment when the storyline stalled a bit at about the half-way mark, then a new conflict was brought in to the story.

Overall Impression: While I really enjoyed reading Boycotts & Barflies, I enjoyed Trust in Advertising even more. This book’s hilarious and flirtatious banter, strong corporate setting, with tension filled relationships will appeal to fans of Julie James’ novels. This book was a fun read and a great escape. It’s a great romance read that will make you swoon. I can’t wait to see what Victoria Michaels comes up with next.

The Book Vixen’s Rating:

4 1/2 Frogs

REVIEW: Tempt Me by Shiloh Walker

Title: Tempt Me
Author: Shiloh Walker
Format: eARC
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: review copy from author
Published: February 2011 by Shiloh Walker

Tempt me…

She’s a temptation he can’t resist…

Roxanne ‘Rocki’ Monroe’s life is full of secrets and hidden heartaches. Cole Stanton would love to heal her pain and chase away the ghosts of her past, but she’s just a complication he doesn’t have room for in his life.

Or so he thinks.

It doesn’t take Cole long to realize he’s more than willing to let temptation get the best of him, more than happy to deal with complications if that’s what it takes to get her.

What he has and what he needs are two different things…and what he needs is Rocki.

Why I Read this Book: Who can resist temptation? Not me. I had read another novella, Beg Me, by this same author and I really enjoyed reading it. It read like a full page novel and the story felt complete. So when I saw that the author had another novella coming out, I knew I wanted to read it. And I like a ‘quickie’ read from time to time. 

What I Liked: Rocki’s character is a woman who knows what she wants and works hard to achieve her goals. She’s a corset designer and she pours herself into her store and her sexy creations. I wasn’t familiar with some of the lingo revolving around corsets but you can tell the author did her research.

Rocki is no stick-thin woman; the woman’s got curves. I love how she helped other women embrace their beauty. And I loved the way Rocki handled herself when in the presence of Mara.

What I Didn’t Like: Mara’s character annoyed the crap out of me. In a novel as short as this one, I would have liked to have read less of Mara. Mara was self-serving and greedy. I don’t understand how Cole tolerated her for as long as he did. They didn’t seem to be a well fit match.

The suspense element didn’t really hold my interest. There was no mystery who the stalker was so it was a bit predictable. I just didn’t get the complete satisfaction from reading this novella as I have with her other books. Beg Me packed a bigger punch as a novella with its intensity.

Overall Impression: Tempt Me was a quick read. I liked Rocki’s character and how her relationship with Cole developed. The author wrote well-developed characters for such a short novel. This wasn’t my favorite book by this author but still a nice romance with a bit of suspense mixed in.



The Book Vixen’s Rating:

3 Frogs

Oh Happy Day – Library Lending coming to Kindle!

First, it was the Lending feature that we Kindle users were missing out on. Then we got it. Now, all we need is Library Lending and we’ll have what the Nook and Sony eReaders have had all along. I am so thrilled that the day is finally coming for us Kindle users!! I just wish that Amazon wasn’t so vague about the feature’s release date – “available later this year” for the Lending feature meant late December. I really hope we don’t have to wait that long for the Library Lending feature.

From Amazon:

Amazon to Launch Library Lending for Kindle Books

Customers will be able to borrow Kindle books from over 11,000 local libraries to read on Kindle and free Kindle reading apps
Whispersyncing of notes, highlights and last page read to work for Kindle library books

SEATTLE, Apr 20, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) --

(NASDAQ: AMZN)-- Amazon today announced Kindle Library Lending, a new feature launching later this year that will allow Kindle customers to borrow Kindle books from over 11,000 libraries in the United States. Kindle Library Lending will be available for all generations of Kindle devices and free Kindle reading apps.

"We're excited that millions of Kindle customers will be able to borrow Kindle books from their local libraries," said Jay Marine, Director, Amazon Kindle. "Customers tell us they love Kindle for its Pearl e-ink display that is easy to read even in bright sunlight, up to a month of battery life, and Whispersync technology that synchronizes notes, highlights and last page read between their Kindle and free Kindle apps."

Customers will be able to check out a Kindle book from their local library and start reading on any Kindle device or free Kindle app for Android, iPad, iPod touch, iPhone, PC, Mac, BlackBerry, or Windows Phone. If a Kindle book is checked out again or that book is purchased from Amazon, all of a customer's annotations and bookmarks will be preserved.

"We're doing a little something extra here," Marine continued. "Normally, making margin notes in library books is a big no-no. But we're extending our Whispersync technology so that you can highlight and add margin notes to Kindle books you check out from your local library. Your notes will not show up when the next patron checks out the book. But if you check out the book again, or subsequently buy it, your notes will be there just as you left them, perfectly Whispersynced."

With Kindle Library Lending, customers can take advantage of all of the unique features of Kindle and Kindle books, including:

  • Paper-like Pearl electronic-ink display
  • No glare even in bright sunlight
  • Lighter than a paperback - weighs just 8.5 ounces and holds up to 3,500 books
  • Up to one month of battery life with wireless off
  • Read everywhere with free Kindle apps for Android, iPad, iPod touch, iPhone, PC, Mac, BlackBerry and Windows Phone
  • Whispersync technology wirelessly sync your books, notes, highlights, and last page read across Kindle and free Kindle reading apps
  • Real Page Numbers - easily reference passages with page numbers that correspond to actual print editions

Amazon is working with OverDrive, the leading provider of digital content solutions for over 11,000 public and educational libraries in the United States, to bring a seamless library borrowing experience to Kindle customers. "We are excited to be working with Amazon to offer Kindle Library Lending to the millions of customers who read on Kindle and Kindle apps," said Steve Potash, CEO, OverDrive. "We hear librarians and patrons rave about Kindle, so we are thrilled that we can be part of bringing library books to the unparalleled experience of reading on Kindle."

Kindle Library Lending will be available later this year for Kindle and free Kindle app users.

Book Review: Rock Hard by Olivia Cunning

Rock Hard by Olivia CunningTitle: Rock Hard
Series: Sinners on Tour, #1
Author: Olivia Cunning
Genre: Erotic Romance
Source: review copy from publisher
Published: April 2011 by Sourcebooks Casablanca

An ultimatum can break your heart....

Every night lead singer, Sed Lionheart whips thousands of women into a frenzy with his voice alone. But the stage is the only place Sed feels any passion since he lost Jessica...

If you’re not willing to break all the rules...

It shattered her heart, but law student Jessica broke off her engagement to Sed, determined to be successful on her own terms. But no other man can ever hold a candle to Sed...

Then a chance meeting and tortuously close quarters lead to uncontrollable flares of passion and rediscovery of their unique penchant for public encounters. Now, in addition to the risk of mutual heartbreak every time they get together, they’re in danger of truly scandalous public exposure...

Why I Read this Book: This series is my new guilty pleasure. I’m new to the world of Contemporary Erotic Romance so I was a bit wary at first. But after reading Backstage Pass, I’m hooked! Rock Hard is the 2nd book in the Sinners series and it’s Sed’s (the lead singer of the Sinners) story.

What I Liked: It feels like I’m reading an autobiography of a real-life rock band. It’s scary how real these characters feel. This is the type of book that I enjoy reading because it lets me live in someone else’s shoes, if only for a few hundred pages. It’s like being a groupie except without having any of the consequences.

The book focuses on the main hero and heroine but the reader also gets to see what’s going on with the rest of the band members as well. Each band mate’s story continues from the first book to the next and we see that being demonstrated in Rock Hard. We get to see what’s going on with Brian and Myrna. It was nice to catch up with them and see what they’ve been up to. Jace was definitely enjoying himself in this book.  I thought it was a nice setup to his book, which is coming next. Methinks there’ll be a little – okay, probably a lot – of BDSM going on in his book. The guy does love his “accessories”.

What I Didn’t Like: I am not a fan of Sed’s; he is my least favorite character in the group. He was an ass in the first book and he’s still an ass in this book. Sed was extremely unpleasant and at times, annoying. He means well, he just doesn’t do it in a proper manner.

I was more tuned in to what was going on in the secondary story arcs than I was with Sed and Jessica; they took a back burner for me. There was a major lack of communication between the two of them. When they’re weren’t fighting, they were having sex (and vice-versa). Lots of sex and lots of fighting.

One part I thought was a bit peculiar was that it was Sed and Jessica who knew what was going on with Trey’s…situation. Even Myrna wasn’t accepting the reality of the situation and that was a bit strange to me.

Overall Impression: Even though I didn’t enjoy Rock Hard as much as I did Backstage Pass, it was still a good read. This series has proved to be a fascinating inside look at the lives of a rock band. Fans of the movie Rock Star, with Mark Wahlberg and Jennifer Aniston, will enjoy reading this series. I gave Backstage Pass a 4/5 rating (you can read my thoughts on that book) and thought it was a great debut novel. Rock Hard was good but Sed just drove me nuts. I just wasn’t feeling his story like I did Brian’s. I’m definitely looking forward to the next book, Hot Ticket, which is Jace’s book.

The Book Vixen’s Rating:
3 Frogs

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Today I have Olivia Cunning here with us for an interview and giveaway. Please welcome Olivia Cunning to The Book Vixen!

What inspired you to write an erotic romance series about a rock band?

OC: I’ve had a thing for rock stars since my teenage years. The series started as one romance novel about Brian and Myrna. I got the idea for that book at a concert. Went home that night and wrote the first scene (at the hotel bar). It became erotic in chapter three. *grin* The characters insisted. And the more I got to know the rest of the band as I wrote Backstage Pass, the more I wanted to write their stories. That’s how it became a series. I didn’t sit down and say “today I’m going to write an erotic romance series about a group of five rock stars”. That idea came later.

What type of research goes into creating a series like Sinners on Tour? Were there any parts based on personal experiences?

OC: I watch a lot of videos where rock stars are caught being themselves. I pay attention to how they act when they’re not aware that the cameras are rolling. They act a lot like regular guys! Surprising, I know. I go to a lot of concerts and observe what’s happening on stage, backstage (get seats beside the stage) and in the audience. So the concert scenes are based on personal experience. I’d like to say I hang out with rock stars, but alas, it would be a lie. I’m a total fangirl and would likely faint if I met one of my faves. So most of the books come solely from my imagination.

I read in an interview that you would cast Vin Diesel (my celebrity husband!) as Sed Lionheart. Great choice! Who would you cast as Jessica Chase?

OC: Scarlett Johansson

What was the most challenging aspect of writing Rock Hard (or this series so far)?

OC: Rewrites. I hate them. Once you change something, it causes a chain reaction of changes in the book and it drives me nuts. This is true for every book, not just Rock Hard. Later when I reread the book after rewrites, it never seems right to me. I feel like someone else wrote those parts. It’s kind of weird...

What can you tell us about the next book (which I believe is titled Hot Ticket, and please correct me if I'm wrong)?

OC: It’s tentatively titled “Hot Ticket” and more than likely about Jace and dominatrix/bad-ass Aggie, but it’s still in the works, so I can’t say anything definitive about it. I wish I had a better answer for you!

Which Sinners band mate would you:

-Like to be trapped in an elevator with for 4 hours?
OC: 4 hours? Brian

-Like to have lunch with?
OC: Eric

-Take home to meet your parents?
OC: Jace

-Hook up with your best friend?
OC: Eric again

-Like to give you a massage?
OC: yep, Eric

-Live with?
OC: Trey

-Go skinny dipping with?
OC: Sed


What are 5 things most people do not know about you?

  1. I have a phone phobia. I get sweaty palms when I call for a pizza delivery.
  2. I got a perfect 800 on the logic portion of the GRE, 720 math and only 540 in English.
  3. I’ve been a single mother for 16 years and my “baby”/”man-child” is leaving to go to college this fall. L and J
  4. The only TV show I watch regularly is The Biggest Loser. I cry every episode.
  5. I have never taken a creative writing class.

Thank you Olivia Cunning for stopping by The Book Vixen!


Raised on hard rock music from the cradle, Olivia Cunning attended her first Styx concert at age six and instantly fell in love with live music. She discovered her second love, romantic fiction, as a teen—first, voraciously reading steamy romance novels and then penning her own. She currently lives in Nebraska. For more information, please visit For updates on the Sinners, be sure to check out!

Find the author online: website | blog



Rock Hard - Cover

A Sinners on Tour Novel

Sinner’s lead singer, Sed, had his heart shredded when Jessica left him to pursue her dreams, so when she dances her way back into his life, he's not sure he's ready for her brand of pain, or pleasure, again.  When she convinces Sed to engage in a benefits with benefits relationship, things seem to be going his way, until one of his fans catches their explicit public display of affection on film and posts it all over the internet.  Will Jessica ever trust Sed again?  And has Sed become the man of Jessica’s dreams or is he just posing to get what he wants?


Thanks to Sourcebooks, (2) lucky winners will each receive a print copy of Rock Hard by Olivia Cunning!!

  • Giveaway open to residents of US and Canada.
  • Comments are appreciated, however, you must fill out the form below in order to enter the giveaway.
  • Please read the Contest/Giveaway Policy for complete list of rules.
  • You have until midnight (your time) on Monday, May 2, 2011 to enter.

Good luck to all who enter!

On My Wishlist (71)

On My Wishlist

On My Wishlist is a fun weekly event hosted by Book Chick City and runs every Saturday. It's where I list all the books I desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. If you want to know more click here.

Tempt Me Tonight by Toni Blake

He was her first: the first man she longed for, the first man she truly desired. Then he betrayed her and broke her heart. Now her revenge will be oh-so-sweet . . . and hot!

Trish Henderson has returned home to Eden to take care of some family business . . . and some personal business, as well. Though she's achieved remarkable success as a high-powered Chicago attorney, Trish has never forgotten her small-town high school sweetheart, Joe Ramsey, or the devastation of heartbreak.

Now she's come face-to-face with the gorgeous sex god Joe has grown into, and she's determined to get him out of her system once and for all—and maybe take a little revenge, too. And this time, she has all the power. After all, where is it written that only men can explore and enjoy a physical relationship without commitment? Her plan: seduce him for just one night, then walk away . . .

But there's just one problem. Trish is about to find out that one night with Joe may never be enough . . .


The Mammoth Book of Hot Romance

Twenty-five unashamedly modern romances with a strong erotic element aimed at the women's market. Twenty-five unashamedly modern short romances which don’t shy away at the bedroom door from the crème de la crème of contemporary romance writers, including Lilith Saintcrow, Louisa Burton, Anna Windsor, Susan Sizemore, Michelle M. Pillow, Rebecca York, Charlotte Stein, Shiloh Walker, Victoria Janssen, Saskia Walker and Cathy Clamp.


Living on the Edge by Shannon K. Butcher

With her thrilling Sentinel Wars series, Shannon K. Butcher pushed readers to the very edge of their imaginations. Now, with the first in her new action romance series she takes them to the very edge of their seats, following the loves and lethal lives of a group of hardened mercenaries who live on the edge-and beyond...

After a devastating injury, Lucas Ramsay knows he's finished as a soldier.But when the general who saved his life asks him for a favor, he says yes. All Lucas has to do is keep the general's daughter from getting on a plane to Colombia -- which is easier said than done...

Independent to the core, Sloane Gideon is a member of the Edge-a group of mercenaries for hire. But she's not on the clock for this mission. Her best friend is being held by a vicious drug lord, and Sloane must rescue her -- no matter how many handsome ex-soldiers her father sends to dissuade her.

With little choice, Lucas tracks Sloane to Colombia-where she reluctantly allows him to aid her in her search. But as they grow closer to the target, they grow closer to each other. And before the battle is over, both will have to decide just what they are willing to fight for.


A Forever Kind of Love by Shiloh Walker

You can always come home. Second chances come a little harder.

Chase and Zoe were the high school golden couple. Football captain, cheerleader, prom royalty. After graduation, though, Chase couldn’t resist the urge to experience life outside their small town. He didn’t exactly expect Zoe to wait twelve years for him, but now that he’s back, he finds some small part of him hoping she did.

It’s no big surprise she’s married. The kick in the face is she married his best friend.

Zoe was devastated when Chase left, but she’s filed those bittersweet memories under “Moved On”. She loves her life, and loves her husband. She has all she needs. And Chase keeps an honorable distance.

One cold, wet, miserable day, tragedy turns Zoe’s world upside down. Chase never expected her to simply fall into his arms, but a man can dream. Except his dream doesn’t include the fact that this time, she’s the one hitting the road…and he’s the one left behind.

Product Warnings: This story contains heartbreak, heartache and one last chance for two lovers to find each other.

What’s on your wishlist?

Book Review: Legacy by Kate Kaynak

Legacy by Kate KaynakTitle: Legacy
Series: Ganzfield, #3
Author: Kate Kaynak
Genre: Paranormal Romance, YA
Source: review copy from author
Published: January 2011 by Spencer Hill Press

Maddie has more problems than the average seventeen-year-old: A psychotic killer with superpowers wants her dead. A serious medical issue makes a "normal life" impossible. And she's about to be introduced to Trevor's family. Guess which one freaks her out the most?

GIVEAWAY [CLOSED]: Complete Lords of the Underworld series *Signed*

In this sexy new installment of New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Gena Showalter’s Lords of the Underworld series, the haunted Amun meets a woman who tempts him like no other.

Keeper of the demon of Secrets, Amun can manipulate the darkest thoughts of anyone nearby. But when new demons possess him, the immortal warrior must be chained and isolated to protect those he loves. Death is his only hope of release—until he meets Haidee, a fellow prisoner whose beauty and hidden vulnerability draw him into a reckless test of his loyalty…

Haidee is an infamous demon assassin, raised to despise Amun’s kind. Yet how can she hate the man whose touch sets her aflame? But to save him, she must give herself body and soul…and face the wrath of a powerful adversary sworn to destroy her.


Thanks to Harlequin, one lucky winner will receive a complete *signed* series of all Lords of the Underworld books to date!! You can read more about the book at the book’s website.

  • Giveaway open to US and Canada residents.
  • Comments are appreciated, however, you must fill out the form below in order to enter the giveaway.
  • Please read the Contest/Giveaway Policy for complete list of rules.
  • You have until midnight (your time) on Monday, April 25, 2011 to enter.

Good luck to all who enter!

On My Wishlist (70)

On My Wishlist

On My Wishlist is a fun weekly event hosted by Book Chick City and runs every Saturday. It's where I list all the books I desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. If you want to know more click here.

Slow Ride (Fast Track, #5) by Erin McCarthy

Her heart is going, going, gone…

As a tribute to her late father, a legendary sports journalist, Tuesday Jones is planning a cancer benefit, with racing memorabilia and a drivers’ meet and greet being auctioned off. Donating a vintage stock car is ex-racing star Diesel Lange. When Tuesday looks into his piercing blue eyes, she feels like it would be so easy to lose herself—but can she trust him with her fragile heart?

…and he’s about to make the greatest bid of his life.

Diesel Lange has had his own brush with death. After his accident, he knows he’s lucky to be alive, and he’s determined not to waste another minute of his life. Even though he’s retired, he still loves a thrill—and no one has set his heart racing like Tuesday Jones. He wants nothing more than to shift their romance into high gear, but he knows her heart is still aching with grief. Can Diesel do the one thing he could never do on the track—take it slow?


Midnight Man (Midnight Series, #1) by Lisa Marie Rice

Interior decorator Suzanne Barron's new tenant is the most dangerously sexy man she's ever met. Navy Commander John Huntington, a former SEAL (aka 'Midnight Man') works best under cover of darkness. Within hours of meeting him, Suzanne has wild, no-holds barred sex with John, then panics at the depth of her passionate response to such a powerful and dangerous warrior. Suzanne doesn't do sex like that. John is definitely someone she needs to avoid for her own peace of mind. But when killers come for her, Suzanne knows she can turn to only one man. John will guard and protect her body. But who will guard and protect her body against John?


Dangerous Lover by Lisa Marie Rice

"I don’t want to be alone tonight."

Caroline Lake can hardly believe she would ever say these words to someone she'd never met before. When a tall, dark stranger arrives wanting to rent a room in her beautiful empty shell of a mansion, she hesitates. Though she is in dire financial straits, the man looks dangerous—dangerously sexy. She's overwhelmed by the desire he sparks in her—hotter than anything she's ever felt before, making her ache to experience his sensuous touch. But who is this armed and mysterious man with danger following in his wake? He's not who she thinks he is . . .

Jack Prescott has wanted Caroline forever. He has spent the past twelve years dreaming of her, desiring her, while fighting in some of the worst hellholes on earth. Now he's back, with twenty million dollars in blood diamonds and a relentless enemy stalking him. But this time Jack's determined that nothing will stop him from finally making Caroline his.

What’s on your wishlist?

Book Review: Enclave by Ann Aguirre

Enclave by Ann AguirreTitle: Enclave
Series: Razorland, Book 1
Author: Ann Aguirre
Genre: Dystopian, Young Adult
Source: review copy provided by publisher
Published:  April 12, 2011 by Feiwel & Friends
New York City has been decimated by war and plague, and most of civilization has migrated to underground enclaves, where life expectancy is no more than the early 20's. When Deuce turns 15, she takes on her role as a Huntress, and is paired with Fade, a teenage Hunter who lived Topside as a young boy. When she and Fade discover that the neighboring enclave has been decimated by the tunnel monsters—or Freaks—who seem to be growing more organized, the elders refuse to listen to warnings. And when Deuce and Fade are exiled from the enclave, the girl born in darkness must survive in daylight, in the ruins of a city whose population has dwindled to a few dangerous gangs. As the two are guided by Fade’s long-ago memories, they face dangers, and feelings, unlike any they’ve ever known.