I realized spending seven days at the beach allowed me to read. A lot. Here is a round-up.
Blurb: Just when the darkness seems permanent, fate flips a switch. Michael Warner has been drifting in a numb haze since his lover was killed by a drunk driver. As the anniversary of the wreck approaches, Michael’s grief grows more suffocating. Yet he must find a way through the maze of pain and secrets to live for their troubled young daughter who struggles with guilt that she survived the crash. Out of the darkness comes a voice, a lifeline he never expected to find-Rebecca O’Neill, a development executive in the studio where Michael works as an electrician. Rebecca, a former sitcom celebrity left scarred from a crazed fan-s attack, has retreated from the limelight and from life in general, certain no man can ever get past her disfigurement. The instant sparks between her and Michael, who arrives to help her during a power outage, come as a complete surprise-and so does her uncanny bond with his daughter. For the first time, all three feel compelled to examine their inner and outer scars in the light of love. But trust is hard to come by, especially when you’re not sure what to believe when you look in the mirror. The scars? Or the truth?
It is so hard to my thoughts of this book into words. This book is beautiful. It stretches boundaries. Michael is dealing with the death of his male lover Alex for the past twelve months. He is also trying to be a single dad now to his daughter, who he adopted with Alex. At work he meets Rebecca O’Neill. Rebecca was an actress stabbed three years ago by a stalker. With multiple scars, she is still reeling from the attack.
These two fall in love though. There is no line between straight and gay. Michael is bi-sexual although in a committed relationship with Alex for almost thirteen years. The pain in this book at times was almost too much to take. It is dark. Grief is thoroughly dissected. Love is tested. Boundaries are broken. It is very sad at times, as Rebecca deals with self worth and Michael deals with his lover’s ghost. The journey they go on will never leave you and this book will always be somewhere in the back of my head. I was so emotionally affected by this book. Deidre Knight wrote it in such a way that I was there with Michael and Rebecca. Their pain became my pain, and in a way it became beautiful.
Blurb: Mia Santiago has fought long and hard to become an expert in weapons technology. But her successful career didn’t come without sacrifices, namely Ryan Mason, the only man she’s ever loved. When she and Ryan chose their careers over a relationship together, she thought their goodbye was for forever. So running into him at a conference is both a dream come true and a disturbing distraction—how can she focus on presenting her research when the man who’s haunted her dreams for years is suddenly close enough to touch?
Losing Mia is Ryan’s one regret in a lifetime of dangerous risks, even if he knows the work he’s done around the world as a member of the military’s elite fighting unit, Delta Force, has saved countless lives. Now he has to keep Mia from the terrorists bent on using her research for catastrophic violence—and bent of kidnapping her and inflicting unspeakable harm upon the one woman he’s never been able to let go. But outrunning danger isn’t easy when the fire between them can’t be put out. And this time, their future together is a matter of life and death…
I made it 70 pages into this book. I could not stand the heroine and after a ton of information overload, I was really not interested for whatever type of suspense was to come. By page 70, when the hero and heroine are reunited after several years not in contact, their reaction to each other made no sense.
Dark Awakening by Kendra Leigh Castle
Blurb: For centuries, shapeshifting vampire Tynan MacGillivray has prowled the night as an outcast, valued only for his ferocious hunting skills. When a feud among the immortals escalates into all-out war, he is ordered by his ruthless queen to locate a Seer-a human woman with a special gift-who can secure victory for their clan. Ty’s search leads him to a quiet New England town, but once he has the Seer in his grasp, her touch awakens within him a hunger like he’s never known . . .
Lily Quinn has always been different. Since childhood, she’s had vivid nightmares and an eerie sixth sense. When a sexy, silver-eyed stranger demands her help, Lily plunges into a new world of danger and sensuality. With Ty, she discovers sizzling passions she cannot deny and powers she cannot control. Soon, it is clear that Lily is much more than a Seer-she holds the key to ancient secrets and unthinkable destruction. But will a vampire’s vow of eternal protection stop these evil forces . . . or unleash her dark destiny?
Dark Awakening comes across as a very cookie-cutter PNR. The heroine is unaware (to some extent) of her abilities and meets a dangerous hero, who just happens to be a shapeshifter and introduces her to the world of vampires. Then we meet the hero’s friend, who is definitely not to be trusted – but guess what – at the end he really is a good guy (who happens to be book two’s hero). Not much in the way of surprises or fun twists. With that being said, the world did interest me enough where I wanted to finish the book. There is a vampire queen, and spies and lots of people who you aren’t sure you should trust. The first 100 pages are much better than the remaining part of the book. I also have to say the romance falls very flat for me. I liked both the hero and the heroine, I just never believed that they fell in love. The sex scenes felt like they were there just because this is a paranormal romance book, not because it felt like that is what should happen next between the couple. This one didn’t quite grab me.
Blurb: Since 9/11, Brooklyn firefighter Griff Muir has wrestled with impossible feelings for his best friend and partner at Ladder 181: Dante Anastagio. Unfortunately Dante is strictly a ladies’ man and the FDNY isn’t exactly gay-friendly. For 10 years, Griff has hidden his heart in a half-life of public heroics and private anguish.
Griff’s caution and Dante’s cockiness make them an unbeatable team. To protect his buddy, there’s nothing Griff wouldn’t do… until Dante is nearly bankrupt and proposes the worst possible solution: HotHead.com, a gay-porn website where uniformed hunks get down-n-dirty… Now Dante wants them to appear there— together.
Griff may have to guard his heart and live out his darkest fantasies on camera. Can he rescue the man he loves without wrecking their careers, their families, or their friendship?
Hot Head has a little slower start, and takes awhile for the two of them to get together. However, once they do the sex scenes in this book are well worth the wait. Griff is a very tall, big 6’5 red headed guy. Dante is Italian. So Smexy definitely got her fill of the hairy man in this one I didn’t connect as well with Dante (this is told in Griff’s POV) and sometimes his expressions or the way he acted was so over the top it got a little tiring. I also didn’t love the porn angle – “making” Griff do this video and doing sexual things together, and still having pages and pages to read until Dante finally gives in and admits he might be gay. If you are looking for hot sex scenes, and don’t care a lot about the emotional connection, I recommend this. Those that seek deep emotions, might find it lacking.
The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
Blurb for The Hunger Games: In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister’s place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before—and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that will weigh survival against humanity and life against love.
Wow. I’ve put off these books for so long, always telling myself that they wouldn’t live up to the hype and they were not my type of books. But then news broke that they were going to be made into movies and recently everyone has been excited about the casting. I wanted to be excited too darn it! So I pulled up Hunger Games on the Kindle. And the next three days were a blur. I love these books!!!!! They are dark, intense, suspenseful, devastatingly depressing, and just completely riveting. There are a thousand reviews out there if you want to get more of an idea about these books, but don’t read spoilers. I had no idea what was going to happen, and I couldn’t put these books down.
I made my husband start Hunger Games the night before we left the beach, and I ended up driving seven hours home so he could read. I knew how he felt