Amazon discontinued the ability to create images using their SiteStripe feature and in their infinite wisdom broke all previously created images on 12/31/23. Many blogs used this feature, including this one. Expect my archives to be a hot mess of broken book cover images until I can slowly comb through 20 years of archives to make corrections.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Month That Was January 2010

Time for me to do some housekeeping and post my reading recap for January 2010, which is kind of dismal. I had a fairly solid month made up of B and C grades, but dang - only 5 books? Oh well. Here's how it breaks down (title links lead to full reviews):

Scoundrel's Kiss by Carrie Lofty, Medieval Historical Romance, 2010, Grade = B+
  • The best read of the month. A deeply flawed heroine (an opium addict!) and a former warrior hero who hopes to atone for his past by hiding away in a monastery. Two challenging characters who...well...challenge each other, and the author throws in plenty of derring-do to keep the whole thing humming along.
The Maid's Lover by Amanda McCabe, Elizabethan Historical Romance Ebook Short Story, 2009, Grade = C+
  • I'm glad I wrote a review for this over at TGTBTU because thinking back, I didn't remember a darn thing about this story - other than it takes place in Elizabeth I's court. Hero and heroine are lovers who find their lives complicated by their social standings. He has a ton of it, and her? Yeah, not so much. McCabe continues to write really interesting settings and dayum is this girl one of the hardest working writers in the romance genre! She's got a back-to-back-to-back trilogy coming out (via Harlequin Historical) starting in April and she's got two books as Laurel McKee (via Grand Central) also on tap for 2010. Holy cow!
Kismet by Monica Burns, Victorian Historical Romance (Morocco!), 2010, Grade = C-
  • There was so much I liked about this story. The unusual setting, the "not fake" courtesan heroine, the creepy villain and a good grovel by the hero at the end. Unfortunately the Old School vibe of the story extended over into the mind-numbing Let's Not Talk To Each Other conflict between the hero and heroine. Ultimately these two frustrated me so much that I was damn near exhausted by the time I got to that "good grovel." If you really miss the Old School, this one is right up your alley - trust me.
House Calls by Michelle Celmer, Silhouette Desire #1703, 2006, Grade = B-
  • My first read for Keishon's TBR Challenge. Doctor hero in need of physical therapy after a gunshot wound meets his match when the physical therapist heroine arrives on the scene to kick his butt. Great characters, good communication, loved the Michigan setting, but felt the author really glossed over the heroine's eating disorder.
Turn It On by Vivien Arend, Contemporary Erotic Romance Ebook Novella, 2010, Grade = B-
  • A traditional read with some holy cow(!) erotic sex scenes that wasn't always my cup of tea, but was a solid read. Sheltered web designer heroine trades services with security expert hero when someone vandalizes the house she inherited. Enjoyed that the heroine was sheltered and "young" without being a moron. A strong Alpha hero who finds his life turned upside down when he assumes responsibility for his special needs younger brother. Lots of sizzle in this one and it should be a winner for those readers who enjoy both "traditional" category and erotic romance. Says me.
And that's it. Only five. Oh well, no use crying about it. Onward and upward!


nath said...

LOL, the good news is that you were able to review them all :D Isn't that good :D

Hope February will be better :D

Kristie (J) said...

I suppose it would be very uncool of me to say...

I beat you! I beat you! I read more than yo-ou did. Na,na,na,na,na,na.

So I will be professional and refrain from saying that.

Sayuri said...

I really need to get Scoundrel's Kiss. I keep forgetting about it.

Wendy said...

Nath: I review just about everything I read - ummmm, because I have no life. You read it here first!

Kristie: Do you not normally read my monthly recap posts? Snails read faster than I do.

Sayuri: Go forth and get!

Amy said...

Wendy, you and I read the same amount, but I put it up on a banner in spotlights. It feels like forever since I read "only" 5 books in a month! But I'm with you -- onward and upward!

mslizalou said...

I don't think I even read 5 books in January. I got stuck in one and really tried to like it. Haven't finished it yet, but I have moved on. Maybe February will be a better month for me.

Wendy said...

Amy & Liza: Hanging out online with other romance readers has really warped my perception. 5 books read is more than 1 book a week - but it seems like so "few" when some readers routinely seem to plow through 15+ books a month! I have been able to do that before, but those are real odd-ball months, and hardly the norm.