Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Review: Undeniably Yours by Shannon Stacey

Undeniably Yours
Shannon Stacey
January 2012
384 pp

Overview: Can a one-night stand turn into happily ever after?
Bar owner Kevin Kowalski is used to women throwing their phone numbers at him. Even if lately he's been more interested in finding Mrs. Right than Miss Right Now. Enter Beth Hansen.
Kevin and Beth may have started out all wrong, with an impromptu passionate encounter at a wedding, followed by a walk of shame. Yet Kevin knows there's more to their relationship than a one-night stand. Especially when Beth turns up pregnant.
Kevin may be ready for the "next step," but Beth doesn't want a relationship with a former playboy, however irresistible he might be. And it's going to take a lot to convince her to go on a second date with the father of her child….

      I didn't know this book was part of a series when I got it, but I didn't feel lost at all without having read the first one. The premise was classic romance novel: a one-night stand leads to an unexpected pregnancy and brings the main couple back together. For the most part, it was an enjoyable read, if a bit longer than it needed to be. And that excessive length just drew attention to what I thought was the biggest downside to the book: the "heroine", Beth, was absurdly stubborn and her constant protesting for independence made her unlikable. I found it difficult to believe that any man would stick around that long after constant rejection. Especially since she really didn't seem to have any redeeming qualities other than her looks. She was a college dropout with no steady job, no friends, no particular talent and she was inexplicably rude to the one person who seemed to look past all that. When I read romance novels, I tend to find myself relating to the heroine and even feeling if she were a real person, we'd be friends. I never once thought that with Beth. In contrast, Kevin, our "hero" was kind, sexy, likable, and more patient than any man or woman would ever be. He and his very likable family kept me reading and will probably have me going back to read the first and third books in the series.

Undeniably Yours: 3/5

Note: I received a copy of this e-book from the publisher for review purposes. 

Monday, January 23, 2012

Review: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

Congrats! You've found one of the secret books featured in our Christmas in July Giveaway hop! 

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight
Jennifer E. Smith
Little, Brown Young Readers
January 2012
236 pp

Overview:Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?
Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan's life. She's stuck at JFK, late to her father's second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon to be step-mother that Hadley's never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport's cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he's British, and he's in seat 18C. Hadley's in 18A.
Twists of fate and quirks of timing play out in this thoughtful novel about family connections, second chances and first loves. Set over a 24-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver's story will make you believe that true love finds you when you're least expecting it.

I've come to expect that most YA novels I read nowadays don't feel like YA except that the main characters are going to be teenagers. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight was a YA novel that felt like it really was meant to be a YA novel. Not to say I didn't thoroughly enjoy reading it -- I loved the writing style and felt immediately drawn to the characters. But, I didn't relate to them like a friend would, but more like a parent; I wanted to comfort them and to admonish their poor decisions (a few of which had me shaking my head). Jennifer E. Smith's writing is fresh, flowing easily and pulling you through until the last page. It made me believe that you really can find love when you aren't looking for it at all.

Rating: 4/5

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Review: Stuck With You by Trish Jensen

Stuck With You
Trish Jensen 
Bell Brdige Books
January 2, 2012 
230 pp. 

As lawyers on opposing sides of a messy divorce case, Paige Hart and Ross Bennett ought to have kept matters purely professional, yet Paige and Ross came to loathe each other with an intensity that was strictly personal. The bad blood between them takes on an unexpected new dimension when the infuriated pair is forced to share a hospital room when they're quarantined after being exposed to the rare and highly contagious Tibetan Concupiscence Virus (aka Horny Monk Disease) that's reputed to shift sensual desire into high gear. When symptoms start showing up way ahead of schedule, the lawyers' objections to each other are overruled - and they enjoy every minute of it. But, after the doctors declare that the disease has run its course, Paige and Ross are still feverish with a longing for one another that they hope will never be cured. When the verdict comes in, will they be sentenced to life - in love?

The plot of this book is so incredibly absurd, I was sure I'd be rolling my eyes as I plodded my way through it. But, a few chapters in, I was so taken by the chemistry that I didn't care about the ludicrousness of the story anymore. Of course, I never truly believed that this so-called "virus" was a threat or even capable of doing what it claimed to do, but it didn't stop me from enjoying the fact that the characters in the book believed it. I love books with lots of tension, especially the sexual kind, and this one did not disappoint. A witty and quick, light read.

Stuck With You: 3.5/5

Note: I received a free copy of this e-book from the publisher for review purposes. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Review:Head Over Heels by Jill Shalvis

Head Over Heels
Jill Shalvis
Published by Forever, 2011
328 pp.

Easily the best of the Lucky Harbor series thus far, Head Over Heels is one of those rare books that I just didn't want to put down and I didn't want to end. I loved the characters, especially Sawyer, who I just kept wishing I could hug, and it was nice to see the return of the characters we met previously. One of the only problems I had with the book was the issue of Chloe's asthma. As a medical professional by day, it was more than a little distracting to me because with the medicine we have today, it is unlikely that someone would still have asthma that debilitating that often. I wanted to scream at her to see a pumonologist! But, it was very sweet to see how much it affected Sawyer. Their chemistry was intense with just the right amount of tension. I was worried that I wouldn't like this book because I wasn't a huge fan of Chloe in the first two books, but she was better developed and more likable here. As I said, it was easily my favorite of the three in the series thus far. You don't have to read first two books to enjoy this one, but I think they are all worth the time. 

Head Over Heels (Lucky Harbor #1): 4.5/5
The Sweetest Thing (Lucky Harbor #2):  3.5/5
Simply Irresistible (Lucky Harbor #3):  4/5

Note: I received a copy of this as an e-book from the publisher for review purposes.