Posts tagged with romance

Feb 20 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: Hate to Want You, by Alisha Rai

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Continuing our month of romance reviews, this week's Book Giveaway pick is Alisha Rai's Hate to Want You. It looks like it's PACKED with angst, which isn't usually my thing (I prefer romances where the protagonists seem mentally healthy enough to actually make a relationship work, even before loads of therapy). On the other hand, "nice couple meets at puppy obedience class, dates successfully, then lives happily ever after" wouldn't be a particularly scintillating read...

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Feb 12 2018

An Extraordinary Union, by Alyssa Cole

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Alyssa Cole's An Extraordinary Union is ambitious: it's a Civil War-era action/romance featuring a biracial couple, both of whom were inspired by real historical figures. (The heroine is based on Mary Bowser, the hero on Timothy Webster.) Cole doesn't stick every landing, but her story succeeds on an impressive number of fronts...

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Feb 12 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: An Extraordinary Union, by Alyssa Cole

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Continuing our month-long celebration of romance novels, this week's Book Giveaway is Alyssa Cole's historical romance/adventure An Extraordinary Union. I'm only about halfway through it, but thus far the romance stuff is fine, but a bit of a distraction from the A+++ spy action. A full review will follow shortly...

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Feb 5 2018

The Hating Game, by Sally Thorne

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Sally Thorne's The Hating Game borrows heavily from Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. I applaud Ms. Thorne's taste in inspirational material, but her book serves as a reminder of how much more there is to Pride and Prejudice than than the romantic storyline. Don't get me wrong: I'm as big a Lizzy/Darcy shipper as the next nerd, but if you stripped their story down to a series of squabbles, mistakes, and inept courting, it wouldn't be nearly as satisfying...

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Feb 5 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: The Hating Game, by Sally Thorne

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This week's Book Giveaway is Sally Thorne's novel The Hating Game. It's the first in a month-long series of romance novel reviews, all of which I have chosen based on recommendations from this post. (It's a change from my Target Method, but one must live dangerously.) A full review will be posted shortly...

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Jan 22 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: The Complete Sookie Stackhouse Stories, by Charlaine Harris

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This week's Book Giveaway is Charlaine Harris's The Complete Sookie Stackhouse Stories. Considering the popularity of this series, I'm always surprised by the homemade vibe of the cover art, which feels like something designed by an artsy middle school student. (But what do I know? Clearly, these books sell just fine.) Our full review will be posted soon...

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Jan 15 2018

Renegades, by Marissa Meyer

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I've been reading Marissa Meyer's work for a long time. She got her start writing fanfiction, then wrote a series of fairy tale adaptations, then followed those up with an origin story for a famous villain...

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Jan 8 2018

Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe, by Melissa de la Cruz

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I understand that successfully adapting Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice with a modern setting is a tall order. You can recycle the basics of the romantic plot—arrogant man, spirited woman, misunderstandings, self-discovery—pretty easily, but most of the book's nuance doesn't translate. (The stakes are not the same when Elizabeth has the option of ditching her family and getting a job.) But...

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Dec 19 2017

High-concept

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There's an article over on io9 about Every Day, the upcoming movie adaptation of the bestselling novel by David Levithan. The article's author is (justifiably) wigged out by the idea of the book—it's a romance between a teen girl and a body-swapping entity—but I'm...

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Dec 18 2017

The Duke of Her Desire, by Sophie Barnes

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As longtime readers of this site know, I periodically attempt to find a new-to-me great historical romance novelist by grabbing random books off Target shelves. I still haven't discovered the next Lisa Kleypas, but hope springs eternal and the romance section at Target is frequently re-stocked...

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Dec 18 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: The Duke of Her Desire, by Sophie Barnes

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This week's Book Giveaway is Sophie Barnes's historical romance The Duke of Her Desire. I am weirdly irritated by the fact that the model on the cover doesn't appear to be wearing a corset or anything under her dress, but experience has taught me that this is probably not the biggest historical inaccuracy I will encounter. Our review will be posted shortly...

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Nov 28 2017

I've finished my shopping for other people, so...

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I was stoked to recently run across this review of Mary Stewart's The Wind Off the Small Isles, a "long-lost novella" that has recently been republished for the first time in 40 years...

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Nov 13 2017

A Spoonful of Magic, by Irene Radford

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I frequently evaluate books like recipes, and it feels particularly appropriate in the case of Irene Radford's new novel A Spoonful of Magic, as it's a story filled to the brim with cooking. Unfortunately, while this particular literary recipe has some interesting ingredients, the finished product is a big ol' mess...

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Oct 9 2017

Immortally Yours, by Lynsay Sands

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It's been years since I've read one of Lynsay Sands's vampire romance novels, but they have always stood out in my mind: in her long-running Argeneau series, vampires are not the result of dark magic or whatever, but rather the products of blood-powered nanotechnology first developed in Lost Atlantis. The quality of her individual installments might vary, but Sands gets all the gold stars for coming up with such a delightfully weird premise...

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Oct 9 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: Immortally Yours, by Lynsay Sands

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Keeping up with our Halloween theme, our current Book Giveaway is Lynsay Sands's latest Argeneau novel Immortally Yours. I'm not sure what installment this is (possibly #18,567), but Sands is a reliably fun writer, so my hopes are high. A full review will follow shortly...

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Oct 2 2017

Haunted Love, Vol. 1: Tales of Gothic Romance, by assorted authors

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When I ran across a copy of Haunted Love #1 (first published in 1973) at a local antique store, I was hoping for something enjoyably terrible. In my head, I was picturing an illustrated vintage Harlequin novel, but with, like, vampires or whatever. Sadly, the contents were neither as trashy nor as entertaining as I expected, and never came close to living up to the cheeseball promise of that cover...

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Oct 2 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: Haunted Love Vol. 1

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In honor of Halloween, our first Book Giveaway in October is Haunted Love Vol.1: Tales of Gothic Romance, first published in 1973. You can't judge this book by its cover, guys: sadly, it falls short on both the gothic and romantic fronts. A full review will follow shortly...

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Sep 25 2017

The Grand Sophy, by Georgette Heyer

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It's tough for most Georgette Heyer fans to choose their favorite of her novels*, but I think it's telling that The Grand Sophy is her first book to get a big-budget movie adaptation. (Allegedly, although I'm not getting my hopes up.) The Grand Sophy is a lively, witty, unabashedly good time, and perfectly encapsulates Heyer's appeal...

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Sep 25 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: The Grand Sophy, by Georgette Heyer

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This week's Book Giveaway pick is Georgette Heyer's The Grand Sophy. (I'm hoping that discussing it will magically encourage the universe to give me an update on the proposed Grand Sophy movie, which seems to have faded from our collective consciousness.) A full review will follow shortly...

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Aug 22 2017

I approve of the cover, at least?

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Pajiba recently posted an update on the forthcoming A Discovery of Witches TV series, based on the All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness. The show is being adapted by Bad Wolf Television (a company run by two former Doctor Who producers), will star Matthew Goode and Teresa Palmer, and the...

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Aug 10 2017

Suppressed passion... and bees

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Variety informs me that Anna Paquin will star in a movie adaptation of Fiona Shaw's 2009 novel Tell It To The Bees. According to the article, the story is set in the 1950s, and Paquin will play a doctor who returns to her hometown to take over her late father’s medical practice. Her situation grows complicated when...

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Aug 7 2017

Hero in the Highlands, by Suzanne Enoch

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I rarely pick up Scottish romance novels. I have no beef with Scotland, but I have never understood what makes it such a rich source for romance novel fetishization. (I mean, why not Ireland? Or Wales? Is it the kilts?) But my inability to appreciate the appeal of itchy, smelly, difficult-to-clean wool skirts is offset by my faith in Suzanne Enoch, one of the few romance novelists I find consistently entertaining, so I decided to give her recent novel Hero in the Highlands a shot...

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Aug 7 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: Hero in the Highlands, by Suzanne Enoch

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This week's Book Giveaway is Suzanne Enoch's Hero in the Highlands, the first book in her No Ordinary Hero series. I'm not usually a huge fan of Scottish romance novels, but Enoch is a reliable writer, so I'm hoping for the best. A full review will follow shortly...

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Jul 24 2017

Faro's Daughter, by Georgette Heyer

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After slogging through last week's highly irritating historical romance, I picked up Georgette Heyer's Faro's Daughter as a literary palate cleanser. It might be one of her weaker efforts, but even C-grade Georgette Heyer still stands head and shoulders above most historical romances...

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Jul 24 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: Faro's Daughter, by Georgette Heyer

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This week's Book Giveaway is Georgette Heyer's novel Faro's Daughter. I don't think anyone is going to pick this as their all-time favorite Heyer, but it falls somewhere in the middle of her body of work—not perfect, but still featuring the kind of charm, wit, and historical detail that most other romance novelists can only dream of achieving. A full review will follow shortly...

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Jul 17 2017

Duels and Deception, by Cindy Anstey

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I picked up Cindy Anstey's Duels and Deception in hopes that it would be an improvement on Avon's True Romance line, a short-lived attempt to write Regency romance novels for teens. I found the Avon books to be amusing but flimsy (even by romance novel standards), but assumed that Anstey's book—with its eye-catching cover and breathless promotional quotes—would be more impressive. Sadly, I was wrong...

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Jul 17 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: Duels and Deception, by Cindy Anstey

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This week's Book Giveaway is Cindy Anstey's Duels and Deception. There's a promotional quote on the back that claims Anstey's writing is "BETTER than Georgette Heyer", which is, uh, high praise, to say the least. Personally, I'd be satisfied to find something that's better than Avon's short-lived attempt at producing Regency romances for teens...

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Jul 10 2017

The Boy is Back, by Meg Cabot

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The Boy is Back is the fourth book in Meg Cabot's loosely-connected The Boy series, all of which are narrated via unconventional methods: texts, e-mail, diary entries, online reviews. This installment is set in Bloomville, Indiana, hometown of professional golfer Reed Stewart. Reed assumed he'd left Bloomville behind, but when his increasingly eccentric parents end up causing a scandal, his family calls him home...

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Jul 10 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: The Boy is Back, by Meg Cabot

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This week's Book Giveaway is Meg Cabot's novel The Boy is Back. The story involves one of my favorite things to read about (organizing) and one of my least favorite things to experience in any medium (golf). One cannot win them all, I suppose. A full review will follow shortly...

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Jun 19 2017

Just Dreaming, by Kerstin Gier

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This is damning with faint praise, but Just Dreaming, the final book in Kerstin Gier's Silver Trilogy, is less of a hot mess than the finale of her previous series. So things are looking up (I guess), but Gier is still relying on the appeal of her lively, funny heroines to ease readers past...

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