Tuesday, August 26, 2008

AAR top 100 List

I'm going to try to read as many of these as I can, and as many as apeal to me. Some won't, and many already do. I'll be updating this post as often as I remember, and whenever I can mark one off the list. Woo Hoo! btw Red =Read Green = TBR Pile then Blue=ones that I probably will read or look interesting at a glance.

1. Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase
2. Dreaming of You by Lisa Kleypas
3. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
4. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
5. Flowers From the Storm by Laura Kinsale
6. Slightly Dangerous by Mary Balogh
7. Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas
8. Bet Me by Jennifer Cruise
9. Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Cruise
10. The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn
11. Lover Awakened by JR Ward
12. Mr. Impossible by Loretta Chase
13. The Duke and I by Julia Quinn
14. It Had to Be You by Susan Elizabeth Phillips ~~~4 stars~~~
15. Lord Perfect by Loretta Chase
16. Romancing Mr. Bridgerton by Julia Quinn
17. The Bride by Julie Garwood~~~4 stars~~~
18. Mr. Perfect by Linda Howard~~~4 stars~~~
19. Naked in Death by JD Robb
20. A Summer to Remember by Mary Balogh
21. Nobody’s Baby But Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
22. Dream Man by Linda Howard
23. The Raven Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt
24. Paradise by Judith McNaught
25. As You Desire by Connie Brockway
26. MacKenzie’s Mountain by Linda Howard
27. Dark Lover by JR Ward
28. The Secret by Julie Garwood
29. Son of the Morning by Linda Howard
30. Lover Eternal by JR Ward
31. Devil’s Bride by Stephanie Laurens
32. A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux
33. Heaven, Texas by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
34. To Have and to Hold by Patricia Gaffney
35. Almost Heaven by Judith McNaught
36. Match Me if You Can by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
37. The Shadow of the Star by Laura Kinsale
38. Cry no More by Linda Howard
39. A Kingdom of Dreams by Judith McNaught
40. Over the Edge by Susanne Brockmann
41. Sea Swept by Nora Roberts
42. Ravished by Amanda Quick
43. Then Came You by Lisa Kleypas
44. To Die For by Linda Howard
45. Something Wonderful by Judith McNaught
46. This Heart of Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
47. The Serpent Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt
48. Suddenly You by Lisa Kleypas
49. The Proposition by Judith Ivory
50. Honor’s Splendor by Julie Garwood
51. Saving Grace by Julie Garwood
52. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
53. When He Was Wicked by Julia Quinn
54. Persuasion by Jane Austen
55. All Through the Night by Connie Brockway
56. It Happened One Autumn by Lisa Kleypas
57. Born In Fire by Nora Roberts
58. Thunder and Roses by Mary Jo Putney
59. Kiss an Angel by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
60. Out of Control by Suzanne Brockmann
61. After the Night by Linda Howard
62. Lady Sophia’s Lady by Lisa Kleypas
63. The Secret Pearl by Mary Balogh
64. Once and Always by Judith McNaught
65. More Than a Mistress by Mary Balogh
66. Untie My Heart by Judith Ivory
67. See Jane Score by Rachel Gibson
68. The Rake by Mary Jo Putney
69. Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon
70. Perfect by Judith McNaught
71. Whitney, My Love by Judith McNaught
72. The Duke by Gaelen Foley
73. One Perfect Rose by Mary Jo Putney
74. Shattered Rainbow by Mary Jo Putney
75. The Windflower by Laura London
76. Dream a Little Dream by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
77. Frederica by Georgette Heyer
78. Passion by Lisa Valdez
79. Voyager by Diana Gabaldon
80. The Lady’s Tutor by Robin Schone
81. Morning Glory by Lavryl Spencer
82. Worth Any Price by Lisa Kleypas
83. Winter Garden by Adele Ashworth
84. My Dearest Enemy by Connie Brockway
85. Where Dreams Begin by Lisa Kleypas
86. Devil’s Cub by Georgette Heyer
87. Gone too Far by Suzanne Brockman
88. Anyone But You by Jennifer Cruise
89. For My Lady’s Heart by Laura Kinsale
90. Rising Tides by Nora Roberts
91. Lover Revealed by JR Ward
92. Open Season by Linda Howard
93. Born in Ice by Nora Roberts
94. Ransom by Julie Garwood
95. Venetia by Georgette Heyer
96. Miss Wonderful by Loretta Chase
97. Ain’t She Sweet by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
98. The Notorious Rake by Mary Balogh
99. The Prize by Julie Garwood
100. Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh

Monday, August 25, 2008

What European City is for me?!

This was fun to do. I was a little surprised they said Paris. I'm not sure I'm "smart" or "chic" enough for Paris. Hmm...

You Belong in Paris
You enjoy all that life has to offer, and you can appreciate the fine tastes and sites of Paris.
You're the perfect person to wander the streets of Paris aimlessly, enjoying architecture and a crepe.
What European City Do You Belong In?

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Getting Creative

Yay! I finally figured out how to change the background. Woo Hoo! I went to The Cutest Blog on the Block and found the funnest stuff. They also had step by step instructions. (which is necessary for me!) It was great! They had some really pretty backgrounds. In the coming weeks, I hope to personalize my header and stuff. I found this site thanks to Cindy W. and Phoebe J. Woo Hoo! If you want to check out another pretty site, try allaboutromancebooks@blogspot.com.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Summer Reading Challenge Wrap-up

1. What one book from my list would I recommend...well, since I can only pick one, it would have to be Lady Be Good by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. I loved this book, and laughed out loud. Because of it, I've bought the whole Chicago Stars Series. (which you will find represented in my Fall Reading Challenge List.) Love, Susan Elizabeth Phillips. Did I mention that!?
2. What was the worst book I read...well, I'll have to say that most of the books I read were ok, or great! I struggled most with the "Wicked" books. To Wed a Wicked Prince and A Wicked Gentleman. They were just ok to me.
3. Which authors did I discover that I loved/hated...Well, I discovered a lot of new authors. I Loved; Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Lynsay Sands...Hated: well that's kinda strong, but I'll be hard pressed to read another Jane Feather.
4. Which reviews did I write that others wrote, and how were they alike or differents...well, I didn't write many reviews on the Readers of Romance blog. My writing skills, and reviewing skills are mediocre, so I didn't suffer you all with them.
5. Comments/suggestions: Well, I thoroughly enjoyed this challenge. It was difficult for me to find books I wanted to read, and made several edits to my list throughout the summer. I'm hesitant about reading new authors, as I really prefer warm/pg-pg13 books to the Hot/r-ish books. Some that I read, were "hotter" than I prefer, but were still well written and I enjoyed the story so much, I'll read the author again. Because of this challenge, I've broadened my author horizons and that I like. Yay me!!

Bride of the Beast

Twice wed and twice widowed, Lady Caterine Keith has no need for a champion. She can fend off unwanted suitors on her own and guard her Scottish stronghold without the help of any man. But her sister, knowing better, sends a make-believe husband---a knight with a battle-scarred face almost too frightening to behold. Sir Marmaduke Strongbow has a secret ambition. He wants not Caterine's land but her hand in marriage and her heart to own. With tantalizing caresses, he will show her how a real champion lays siege...and how love is impossible to fight.

I liked this book quite a lot. I could relate in ways to each of the "demons" who plagued both the hero and heroine. I appreciate how, they each had to fight those demons to be able to come together. I wish the heroines final demons had been exorcised a little better, or more obviously.

I enjoyed Leo, the antithesis of the dog in Devil in a Kilt. I'll keep trying Ms. Welfonder's work. Book 2 in the MacKensie Series.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

For the Roses

No one ever knew what kind of strays, from animals to weary travelers, Mary Rose Clayborne would bring home next. Sometimes her four brothers? runaway slave Adam, ex-pickpocket Douglas, gunslinger Cole, and con man Travis -- wondered whether her boarding school education did a lick of good now that their beautiful, impulsive little sister was back in Blue Belle, Montana.

Of course, everyone in town knew better than to mess with the Claybornes. The brothers, four of the toughest hombres in the West, had once been a mismatched gang of street urchins. But they had found an abandoned baby girl in a New York City alley, named her Mary Rose, headed West, and raised her to be a lady. Through the years the Claybornes had become a family, held together by loyalty and love if not by blood -- when they suddenly faced the crisis that could tear them apart.

That crisis came to town with Lord Harrison Stanford MacDonald. In his fine clothes, he looked every inch a dude. Mary Rose figured that if she didn't interfere, this handsome Englishman would get himself killed, so she took him home to the Clayborne ranch to ask her brothers to turn him into a cowboy. She didn't suspect MacDonald was a chameleon, not the greenhorn he appeared to be. He'd prove fast with a gun, quick with his fists, and capable of commanding the Claybornes's respect -- if not their trust. He'd also soon be desperately in love with Mary Rose. She returned his affection blissfully and wholeheartedly...until MacDonald revealed a secret that challenged everything she believed about her love, herself, and her life.

Now Mary Rose's search for identity and meaning would begin, sending her to England, to the family she lost long ago. Her soul hungered for the freedom of the American West, but she was being drawn away from all she cared about by the need to know her past...and by her uncertain but still potent love for MacDonald. Torn between conflicting loyalties, Mary Rose wasn't sure who she really was, or where she belonged...questions that could only be answered if she listened to the truth within her heart.

This is my last book for ths Summer Reading Challenge. I waited until now to read it, as the next one in the series is part of my Fall Challenge List and I didn't want to wait too long between books.

I'll start by saying that I liked For the Roses fairly well. It is not my favorite Julie Garwood. I understand Ms. Garwood's need to set up the whole series in this story and therfore it was a bit slow in the beginning. Once, I got past all that, is was smooth sailing! I really liked all the letters written to Mama Rose. Those were really cute glimpses of their life growing up together. I can't wait to read Adam's and Cole's story the most. I loooove a strong man, who has an oooey-gooey center! *sigh*

I give this a 4 rating. I seldom give 5's, and this one gets a 4 based on my falling in love with Adam and Cole. I have a feeling the next books in the series will be more swift moving and will probably easily earn their 4's or 5's easier.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Tall, Dark, and Cajun

Spoiler Alert----Sorta----Mebbe----I'm typin' Cajun!!---Did, I hear St. Jude!!!


Men! After finally dumping her fiancÈ, whose idea of romance was making sure she toned her butt and abs, decorator Rachel Fortier hightails it out of D.C. straight for Cajun country. But her ex-taxidermist grandma's cabin on stilts in the Louisiana bayou isn't quite the grand estate she imagined. Throw in a pet alligator named Useless, a herd of Southerners born and bred, and Remy LeDeux, the smoldering-eyed pilot angling for her family's property, and Rachel's in for a passel of trouble-especially since their chemistry is hotter than the Atchafalaya Swamp in July. With his miniskirted great-aunt itching to marry him off and her rifle-toting grandma ready to shoot Remy the second he sets foot on her land, the sexiest bad boy this side of the Mason-Dixon line will need a special kind of voodoo to win this civil war.

Ok, let me start off with my Issues! When Remy reveals to Rachel that he is sterile, following a horrible accident and subsequent surgeries following Desert Storm, she dumps him, for not telling her sooner! Talk About!! They've been "seeing" each other for like 2 weeks. (seeing alot of each other, nudge nudge!!) In her defense, her fiance had a vasectomy like 1 month ago without telling her. (dumps the chump! ) What did she expect?! "Hi, my name is Remy. I think you're hot, btw I'm sterile!!" Yikes!! He's a guy, a man's man, and admitting something like that would be similar to a woman walking around town wearing a t-shirt with her weight in BIG print. (Any takers?! I thought not!) She overreacts, and his family sides with her when he finally tells him his embarrassing little secret. I get it, that the fact that he can't father a child, (biologically) is not the big deal he thinks it is, but for her to be sooo insensitive to how that makes him feel, is beyond me.

Soapbox, put away!! I still very much liked the characters and the story. Sandra Hill, discusses this sensitive topic with grace and humor. There is a cajun granny to rival Tanta Lulu! Believe it! Ms. Hill also revives the Mullet! Gone but not Forgotten!! I kept waiting for a Billy Ray Cyrus song to come on the radio or tickets to his concert or something. (hee hee!)

There is a famous Richard Gere moment, but I won't tell you which one. Ya'll have to read it for ya'll selves. This installment sets up for Charmaine's story. We even get glimpses several times.

Raoul...hubba hubba!!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Red-Hot Cajun

The long hot Louisiana summer just got hotter for Rene LeDeux. He's burned out by D.C. politics and only wants to build his cabin in peace. But if his wacky, matchmaking great-aunt has her way, Bayou Black's prodigal son will be hitched before he can say butt-naked! That honor goes to Valerie "Ice" Breaux, Rene's high school nemesis turned Trial TV anchor, who's been abducted by Rene's activist friends.

Mon Dieu! It's bad enough being kidnapped and having her power suit ride up her thighs. Did she have to land in the lap of the most irritating, sexiest hunk she's ever laid her eyes on? Now Val's stranded in Rene's remote cabin, besieged by irrepressible LeDeux relations, not to mention a dingbat duo out to save the swamp.

It's a heat wave, guar-an-teed! Val vows she'll give her heart to the Cajun bad boy when alligators fly. Rene swears to get the girl who got away. It's never been steamier in the bayou than with two people this red-hot with desire... and more than ready for love.

I really enjoyed this book! It was "hotter" than I prefer. The story, and characters were great! The fun was abundant, and that was a clincher for me. I read this out of order, which chaps my hide! But, c'est la vie! I'll be reading more Sandra Hill, and hopefully in order. woo hoo!!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

A Kingdom of Dreams

Now Judith McNaught has written her most tender, most tempestuous romance yet...the story of Jennifer Merrick, a deisty Scottish beauty, and the fierce English wariour she defies--and desires.

Abducted from her convent school, headstrong Scottish beauty Jennifer Merrick does not easily surrender to Royce Westmoreland, Duke of Claymore. Known as "The Wolf," his very name strikes terror in the hearts of his enemies. But proud Jennifer will have nothing to do with the fierce English warrior who holds her captive, this handsome rogue who taunts her with his blazing arrogance. Boldly she challenges his will...until the night he takes her in his powerful embrace, awakening in her an irresistible hunger. And suddenly Jennifer finds herself ensnared in a bewildering web...a seductive, dangerous trap of pride, passion, loyalty, and overwhelming love.

I enjoyed the heck out of this book! It was more serious than what I've been reading lately, and that being said, it was perfect for a change of pace. Her characters were well developed. The story was detailed without getting too bogged down. The pace moved well. I'll try more books by Judith McNaught. I enjoyed this abundantly. I'd rate this a 5!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

A Bride for a Bit

"Misreading an order for bridles, a New England farmer sends his four sisters-in-law as mail-order brides to Lickwind, Wyoiming. When four women step off the train, astonishment turns to mayhem as the men of the town suddenly spruce up and make time for courting.

Since James Collingswood--still without tack for his horses--can't afford train tickets to send the women back, they'll have to stay. But what future is there in Lickwind for:

*Matty, the sociable sister who irritates James' very soul with her unending friendliness to the eager men of Lickwood.

*Corrine, the mom-to-be still so pained over her young husband's death that she barely knows Luke Collingswood is alive.

*Bess, who insists that the town must have a church, reform the brothel women, and straighten up the saloon keeper, Gideon Rikers.

*Bertie, who can out perform any man she ever meets...until the mysterious Thomas Hardin becomes her personal protection agency.

Under such absurd circumstances, the sisters will certainly find laughter in Lickwind...but will they also find love? One thing's for sure--the town will never be the same again!"

I really enjoyed this anthology. It is a "christian romance" so there is no sex and no kissing even. However, the love stories are good. I liked Matty's story best. It was written by Cathy Marie Hake, and something in the way she writes men has me smiling. There is a certain ruggedness in her men with their grumbling as well as gentlemanly ways. I thought everyone did a great job of continueing each others stories and keeping true to the characters.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Kiss an Angel

Wedding Day

Pretty, flighty Daisy Devreaux can either go to jail ormarry the mystery man her father has chosen for her. Arranged marriages don't happen in the modern world, so how did the irrepressible Daisy find herself in this fix?

Alex Markov, as humorless as he is deadly handsome,has no intention of playing the loving bridegroom to a spoiled little featherhead with champagne tastes. He drags Daisy from her uptown life to a broken down traveling circus and sets out to tame her to his ways.

But this man without a soul has met his match in a woman who's nothing but heart. Before long, passion will send them flying sky high without a safety net...risking it all in search of a love that will last forever. Pretty, flighty Daisy Devereaux can either go to jail or marry the mystery man her father has chosen for her. Arranged marriages don't happen in the modern world, so how did the irrepressible Daisy find herself in this fix?

I love this book! I love the characters. I felt their pain, and their joys. I appreciated her spunk and determination to not give up. I loved the secondary characters, especially Tater and Sinjun!! I'd read it again and again.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

The Brat

Who Would Marry...

All the knights had heard tales of Lady Murie, Kind Edward III's goddaughter and much feted favorite. It was said she was stunningly beautiful, with bright blue eyes, golden hair and a sweet smile. It was also said that the king had doted on the girl and spoiled her rotten. Despite his need, when Sir Balan saw her howling ans sobbing, Murie was the last person he wanted to wed.

...The Brat?

But all that glitters is not gold, and sometimes diamonds look very, very rough. There was more to Murie than meets the eye, and Balan soon learned that he'd be lucky indeed to deserve such a bride. Yet he was not the only one to discern the truth, and the other hopeful hubby was not quite as honorable. A plot was afoot. Soon would come a reckoning, a time to show who was chivalrous, who was a cad...and who had won the love of a heart unspoiled.

I liked this book quite a bit. It is not my favorite Lynsay Sands, but it was a good story. I liked alot how the author took care of misunderstandings without having to cause grief between the hero and heroine. That misunderstanding stuff turning into a bid deal, gets old after a while. I didn't fall for the secondary characters like I usually do. they were good, but not so well developed and funny, that I hoped they had their own story. I will read more by this author for sure. She brings humor and sensitivity to her characters that I like alot.

Friday, August 1, 2008



From the moment Karen McAlister saw Rand Prescott, she knew that he was the one man with whom she could share her future. But Rand's own vision was limited, and he was unwilling to bind himself to a woman he could not see.

Fate, however, saw everything, and forced them into a marriage neither one could have foreseen on that first night in each other's arms. But theirs became a love which neither one would trade for all the riches of the Orient or the brightness of the sun.

I liked this story pretty well. I thought Rand was a little over the top. Geez, your blind, not incompetant. So, you'll never "see" her, guess what you'd get to "feel" her. What husband doesn't want more "feeling" going on. :) It was an ok book. Luckily it was short, cuz I don't think I would have wanted to invest much more time with them.