Category Archives: Lisa

Dark Wolf

DarkWolfCoverDark Wolf by Kate Douglas
Reviewer: Lisa Guertin
Kensington Publishing – Aphrodisia
Novel: 352 pages
Purchase at Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Roses: 4

It is a new beginning for the Chanku. For so long they kept their shapeshifting ability secret, but now they have assimilated into the world in ways they once never thought possible. Still there are those who want to destroy them, with dark powers of their own… A Bold New Beginning The CEO of Cheval International, Lily Cheval chooses to live alone, but a series of rapes and murders leave her wary and worried for her fellow Chanku. Then she meets Sebastian Xenakis and the connection is intense and immediate. The son of a charismatic cult leader, Sebastian is a mysteriously sensual man who uses magic to shift into wolf form. He and Lily come together in a moment of supreme ecstasy, succumbing to a primal passion that leaves Lily shaken but utterly alive. Is Sebastian her lifetime mate or is he her worst enemy?

Excerpt

Dark Wolf by Kate Douglas is a delightful addition to her Chanku series.  Lily Cheval is a strong heroine and is more than able to take care of herself and her family.  Not only a shapeshifter, she is also a strong mage.  Sebastian Xenakis is a troubled son trying to build a relationship with his distant and newly discovered father, who just happens to be the her race’s worst enemy.  When the two meet for the first time, sparks fly.  As the story develops, I found myself cheering for Sebastian, even when I was certain if he was a good guy or the bad guy in the story.  There were times when it could have gone either way.  I enjoyed watching Lily and Sebastian grow and work on their connection.  My only negatives about the story development are that it seemed a bit odd for a 40ish man to be quite so focused on winning his father’s approval (especially after his mother’s deathbed warning of danger) and the fact that Lily is so quick to accept that the attack she suffered at their first meeting was not his fault, in spite of coming from Sebastian.  However, these are minor flaws and do not detract from the overall storyline.

I know that many of Kate’s fans were disappointed when she announced that she was ending the series.  But now that she has taken up the stories of the Chanku children, loyal fans can look forward to many more books and staying in touch with the characters we’ve come to know and love.  That said; this is a book that can be read and understood without having read the many Wolf Tales books that came before.  Kate does a good job of filling in the uninitiated on the Chanku history that is needed to understand the storyline.  This was the first book our newly formed book club read and it was a unanimous hit.  And the cover alone makes this a book worth owning!

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Kiss the Bride by Jody Wallace

Kiss the Bride
Kiss the Bride by Jody Wallace
Reviewer: LisaG
Entangled Ever After
Novella: 115 pages
Purchase on Amazon
Roses: 4

Herman Edward Heckley knows all about drywall, concrete, and nail guns. So what’s he doing fighting off taffeta in a bridal salon? He’s maid of honor for his best friend, Caroline Oakenfeld, in her wedding to a pencil-necked geek. But the closer he gets to the ceremony, the more he wonders if he’s been missing out all this time.

Caroline has been missing out, and she knows it. She’s been in love with Heck forever, but frittering her life away until Heck wises up isn’t part of her life plan. She’s agreed to marry her boyfriend so she can move on with her life. But the closer she gets to the ceremony, the more she realizes she has to resolve her feelings for Heck.

For better or for worse.

Herman “Heck” Heckley and Caroline Oakenfeld have been best friends for 34 years, which explains how he finds himself swamped in taffeta in a bridal shop and planning a bachelorette party as Maid of Honor in Caroline’s wedding to a pencil-necked geek.  So why isn’t Caroline happier and what are these odd feelings he’s having for his best friend?  Caroline after loving Heck for years and finally giving up on having him return her feelings, finds a nice man to marry and move on with her life.

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This was not your typical friends to lovers story.  There were times I wanted to reach out and slap both Heck and Caro on their heads for being so dense.  Both of them are scared to admit to their feelings for the other.  Add in a conniving, delightfully evil bridesmaid and you have a hilarious read.  Heck is a man’s man and is so out of his element dealing with various wedding chores.  His confusion over his changing feelings for Caro is believable. Caro’s fear of losing Heck’s friendship kept her from declaring her love and leads her to accept Dan’s proposal.  The highlight of this book is a riotous bachelorette party which will leave you laughing, just don’t eat the icing.

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A Marrying Man by Sandrine Gasq-Dion

marryingmanA Marrying Man by Sandrine Gasq-Dion
Reviewer: LisaG
Wilde City Press
Novella: 40,000 words approximate
Purchase at Wilde City Press
Roses: 4

It’s been almost a year since a disastrous bet dropped Blaine McKlintock and his best friend, Kent Samson in hot water. Now, Kent is getting ready to propose to Terry Barron. Blaine couldn’t be happier for his best friend, but when Kent asks Blaine to plan the wedding, Blaine is thrown for a loop, especially when Kent drops another bomb. Spencer Cassidy will be helping. Blaine remembers Spencer very well, but the former Wall Street force doesn’t seem to remember him. Blaine’s changed a lot since the bet, but will Spencer see it too?

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A Marrying Man is the sequel to A Betting Man, however, the author does a great job of filling the background so that reading the first book isn’t a requirement to enjoy and follow along.

Blaine has worked quite hard to make up for suggesting the bet that nearly ruined his best friend’s relationship with Terry.  He is even willing to help plan their wedding on short notice.  The only fly in the ointment is that he has to work with Spencer Cassidy, his childhood crush.  He believes that Spencer dislikes him because of his part in the infamous bet and is defensive whenever Spence is around.  Not to mention the fact that Spencer is straight.

Spencer on the other hand finds Blaine quite attractive and interesting and wants to get to know him better.  Their interactions while planning the wedding are funny and creative.  The incident at the cake tasting was particularly humorous.  I loved Blaine’s reactions to Spencer’s daughter Valerie and the way she brought out the child in him at times.

The only problem I had with this book was the way the evil ex-wife suddenly had a change of heart at the end.  It seemed far too abrupt after the way she’d behaved all through the book.

This was a new to me author and I will be picking up more of her books, including the first book in this series.

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