Lemon Drop: I'm right here Auntie Wendy!
Me: Where? All I see is a curious little monkey...
Lemon Drop: Auntie Wendy! It's me! I'm Curious George for Halloween!
Me: Oh, there you are! Wow, that's some costume.
Lemon Drop: I know, aren't I the cutest? Mommy calls me her little monkey. Are you back to tell me about the naughty books you read last month?
Me: I sure am! I had a pretty solid month quality-wise, although the actual numbers aren't that great. Eight books, but uh....three short stories, one anthology and a DNF. So, yeah, kinda sad. But here they are....
Title links will take you to full reviews.
Tuscan Freedom by Ruthie Michaels - Spice Briefs, 2010, Erotica digital short story, Grade = B
- Heroine heads to Italy to visit a college friend and gets her groove back with two beautiful men in residence....and, uh, her friend. Just sayin'. This was a quick, smokin' hot read, but it fits firmly in Erotica As Fantasy. In other words - if you need the Condom Moments in your erotica or you're looking for a more thorough exploration of polyamorous relationships....yeah, just keep looking. But I liked this for what it was. Harlequin Cheat Sheets: Two Hunky Hunks, Threesomes Ahoy!, Girl On Girl, Getting Your Groove Back.
- Hubby is burning both ends of the candle at work, leaving no time to take care of his wife. Fed up with this turn of events, she squeezes herself into a skimpy outfit, grabs a pizza, and hits hubby's office for a little afternoon delight. Spice Briefs aren't necessarily known for being "sweet" - but this one kinda was. A nice story about a married couple putting the spice back in their sex lives. Harlequin Cheat Sheet: Heroine In Desperate Need Of Orgasm, Workaholic Hubby, Heroine Taking Initiative.
- Heroine has a thing for trains. No, really. She scurries off to secluded cabin for a little self-lovin' when she realizes she's not alone. Golly, whatever will her and the hunky surfer dude in the cabin do? Quick, sexy, with some actual dialogue outside of the sexual shenanigans. Also, a nice open ending that makes me think these two aren't quite done with each other yet. Harlequin Cheat Sheet: Hot Sex With A Hot Stranger
- Heroine catches pro-football hubby boinkin' other woman. She runs home to Daddy, who owns another team. She needs job, takes over as team mascot, and tight end hero tackles her thinking it's his no-good cousin. What we have here is "humor" and it wasn't working for me. But what really didn't work was the relationship the heroine had with her parents. It was very much Indulgent Parents and Teenage Debutante Cheerleader. You're a grown woman and your mother scolds you for not eating your broccoli? Seriously? You know what I do when my Mom makes something I'm not wild about? I DON'T EAT IT! I fend for myself! Also, neither here nor there, the football stuff didn't ring true. Chalk it up to me having watched every blessed season of Hard Knocks.
- Former town bad girl comes home to take care of ill father. Then the local sheriff comes a callin', which only adds fuel to the fire for the gossipmongers. I was fine with the heroine willing to martyr herself, it was her willingness to subject her teenage daughter to the mountains of shit that bothered me. A lot. Great hero though, and nice suspense thread for the continuity series. Harlequin Cheat Sheet: Rape Survivor Heroine, Beta Hero, One Teenage Daughter, One Disapproving Daddy, All Small Town Residents Are Assholes
- My monthly TBR read. The Gentry story was so awful I stopped reading after the first chapter. The Bodwell story was better, but the first sex scene really turned me off. Now the Heath story? Magic. Pure magic. Great exploration of hero-worship and heroes, with a gut-puncher of a finish.
- Having survived a brutal (well is there any other kind?) gang rape, heroine is miscarrying her baby when the hero steps in and saves her life. Hero is former bard/storyteller hunting for the men who killed his betrothed. The same men who brutalized the heroine. This is a heavy, angsty story, and it pretty much sucks all the light out of the room while you're reading. That said, with two emotionally damaged characters, and a humdinger of a mystery, it makes the happily-ever-after all the sweeter. Harlequin Cheat Sheet: Rape Survivor Heroine, Hero Bent On Vengeance, One Dead Fiancee', One Guilt-Ridden Younger Sister, Happily Married Siblings From Previous Books.
- Jilted ex-boyfriend gets his groove thang on with a sexy waitress at his former girlfriend's wedding. These two can't keep their hands off each other - but he's running for political office and she's a 20-something train wreck with a Big Secret. Plenty of sexy sizzle, loads of great dialogue, and a scrumptious hero. It took me longer to warm up to the heroine, and I had reservations about the romance early on, but it all comes together in the end.
Me: Uhhh.....I plead the fifth.
Lemon Drop: So....what's yours?
Me: Oh sweetie. You're definitely too young for this conversation.
Lemon Drop: But not too young to hear about threesomes and heroines who have train fetishes?
Me: Oh look what I have? Shiny, shiny car keys!
Lemon Drop: Weeeeee! Gimme, gimme, gimme!