Ex Libris Romance (53)

 

Ex Libris Romance (53)Sex, Straight Up by Kathleen O'Reilly
Series: Those Sexy O'Sullivans #2
Published by Harlequin on April 1, 2008
Genres: Romance
Goodreads
three-half-flames
four-stars

Meeting a handsome loner on a deserted beach in the Hamptons was like being hit by lightning. One steamy weekend in bed with Daniel O'Sullivan and Catherine Montefiore was marvelously woozy from a delicious cocktail of sun, sand and superhot sex. Abruptly, though, Catherine's forty-eight hours of fun are at an end when her family's exclusive auction house is hit by a very public scandal. She's ready to step in and save the day, but she's hoping Daniel, her hot Irish hunk, will lend a hand. After all, he's got the necessary skills and, straight up or not, Catherine wants another long drink of Daniel before another forty-eight hours are up and her legacy is lost forever

Ok, listen. You are going to want to roll your eyes and ignore this book because of the ridiculous title. (Why, Harlequin, WHY??)  You shouldn’t, though, because this book was such an amazing find. Its about a 9/11 widow who cannot move on and an introverted art appraiser who is trying to convince herself that she deserves to be 100% loved by someone.  It was such a wonderful, romantic, and sometimes sad story that did not shy away from the effects of grief, especially when it is tied to such a visible event.  Daniel is completely stuck in the past and really likes it there. He has his job and the bar he owns with his brothers, and that’s really all he needs. Meeting Catherine, who doesn’t demand change from him, wakes up a part of himself that he has missed, but you can imagine the mixed feelings he has.  Catherine loves what she does, but doesn’t have the confidence to do more and doesn’t know how to communicate that t her family. This book is about moving on, yes, but it’s also about finding someone who lifts you up, taking change of your own happiness, and it was just so very good.  (A big thanks goes to the Smart Bitches team because I ever would have heard about this without their weekly newsletter.)

 

 

 

I received this galley in consideration for an honest review.

Ex Libris Romance (53)Extreme Honor by Piper J. Drake
Series: True Heros #1
Published by Grand Central on January 26, 2016
Genres: Romance
Goodreads
two-half-flames
three-stars

David Cruz is good at two things: war and training dogs. The ex-soldier's toughest case is Atlas, a Belgian Malinois whose handler died in combat. Nobody at Hope's Crossing kennel can break through the animal's grief. That is, until dog whisperer Evelyn Jones walks into the facility . . . and into Atlas's heart. David hates to admit that the curvy blonde's mesmerizing effect isn't limited to canines. But when Lyn's work with Atlas puts her in danger, David will do anything to protect her.

Lyn realizes that David's own battle scars make him uniquely qualified for his job as a trainer. Tough as nails yet gentle when it counts, he's gotten closer to Atlas than anyone else-and he's willing to put his hard-wired suspicion aside to let her do the same. But someone desperate enough to kill doesn't want Lyn working with Atlas. Now only teamwork, trust, and courage can save two troubled hearts and the dog who loves them both .

This book was interesting in that it dealt with a mystery involving a combat veteran…who happens to be a Belgian Malinois.  I would say that this was really more thriller than romance, though, and while it still had a fair amount of romance, it was split equally between the conspiracy they are trying to unravel.  I liked the unique setting, but the story was so-so.  It was light no details, so the whole dynamic between Lyn and her stepdad was kind of glossed over, and I never really got to know Lyn the way I felt I knew David.  It was not a super steamy romance, but it was very sweet and if you like military romances and dogs, I think this would definitely be a win for you.

 

 

 

Ex Libris Romance (53)Imaginary Lines by Allison Parr
Series: New York Leopards #3
Published by Harlequin on April 14, 2014
Genres: Romance, New Adult
Goodreads
two-half-flames
three-stars

Tamar Rosenfeld has been in love with New York Leopards linebacker Abraham Krasner since they were twelve years old. She'd always considered it destiny that they'd end up together…until Abe was drafted and she professed her feelings in a moment of blind excitement. The sting of his rejection was like nothing she'd ever felt before, and it's nothing she'll ever forget.

Older and wiser, Tamar has landed a dream job as a reporter for one of New York's premier athletic websites. Determined to stop being the safe, boring girl she's felt like for most of her life, Tamar makes a list of all the things she wants to do and see in her new city, and Getting Over Abraham is priority number one.

But destiny has finally chosen to interfere. Just as Tamar's decided to move on, Abe's realized she's the only woman for him. When he confides the truth, Tamar has to decide if she can put her crush behind her, or take a chance on the very man who's been holding her back all these years.

I lost track of this series after really enjoying the first two books, so when this came across my suggestions, I snapped it up.  It wasn’t m favorite of the series, but it was still good. If you like the second chance at love or the friendship turning to romance tropes, this is the book for you.  I liked that Tamar and Abe had known each other their whole lives.  There was such a sweetness to their easy rapport turning heated as they fell in love.  There was a lot of conflict centering around Tamar’s job as a sports reporter, but the parts I really liked was Abe’s desire to lead a more simple life.  After the fame and the craziness, his connection with Tamar and they way their shared faith and experiences created a relationship, made their love story very sweet and gave it some depth.  If you haven’t read this series, it’s one I highly recommend in the sports romance category.

 

 

 

four-stars

Kate @ Ex Libris


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