The Raven and the Swan by Laurie Grant

December 17, 2009 at 1:32 pm (Romance) (, , , , , )

The Girl – Gillian Mallory, a young beautiful blonde who has lived her life in a convent and is preparing to take her final vows.

The Guy – Miles Raven, a young raven haired knight who has just been given the convent property as a gift from King Henry the VIII

The Time Period – Tudor England during the reign of King Henry the VIII between his marriages to Ann and Jane.

The Setup – The king has just dissolved all religious houses sending all the monks and nuns into the world by themselves.  Gillian’s convent is dissolved and given away to a knight to make into his new northern manor home.  All of the nuns except Gillian leave, she stays behind to care for the prioress who is to sick to journey.  Miles comes upon her sick and frail herself in his new manor home.  At first he is displeased to find two nuns still in residence but then he begins to have feelings for the beautiful girl and determines to help her find a new place in the world.  Of course Miles’ last suitor and his court friends will stop at nothing to seperate him from some young, northern nun.

The Fun Parts – Decent sex scenes and a believeable romance.  Some nice historical details.

My Gripe – Not a whole lot, there are times in the book where you just want to shake Gillian and ask her “What the hell are you doing?” but other than that it was a decent read.  Nothing fantastic but nothing horrid.

Rating – B- to a C+ on this one.  An enjoyable read but I will most likely forget about it in a couple of days.

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-= 2010 Reading Challenges =-

December 14, 2009 at 6:56 pm (Challenge) (, )

Here is my personal 2010 reading challenge:

Romance Genre Challenge

  • Read two controversial titles, one new and one old –  Stormfire by Christine Monson & Peyton Place by Grace Metalious
  • Read one book considered to be horrid – Rebel Bride by Catherine Coulter
  • Read one ARC and write the review – The Silent Governess by Julie Klassen
  • Read two classical works
  • Read one fantasy romance
  • Read one New to Me Author
  • Read one New to Me Location
  • Read two Pirate Romances
  • Slave to Romance – sold into slavery romance
  • Moonlight and Magnolia – read one set in the South
  • War What is it Good For? – read one that takes place during a war
  • I’ve Got That Loving Feeling – read one that has love in the title
  • The Color of Love – read one that has a color in the title
  • The Dark Castle of Forbidden Love – read two vintage Gothic romances
  • Read one book with a weather condition in the title
  • Read one book with a person’s name in the title
  • Blushing Bride – read one title with bride, wife, husband, marriage or wedding in the title
  • Roots – read one novel that takes place in England and one in Scotland

Mystery Genre Challenge

  • Read four more titles in my Midnight Louie series
  • Read four more books by Agatha Christie
  • Read three books that have been on my shelf for ages
  • Bloody Murder – read one with blood or murder in the title
  • Is it Dead Yet? – read one with dead or dying in the title

Young Adult/Reliving My Childhood Challenge

  • Finish five more Christopher Pike books

Wildcard Category

  • Read five books that don’t fit in my normal categories that have been sitting on my shelves

And I am also planning on using all books that I currently own from my own shelves.  So I will be joining the 2010 Reading From My Shelves Project!

For more info on that go here

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Unconquered By Bertrice Small

December 10, 2009 at 7:37 pm (Romance) (, , , , )

The Girl – Miranda, innocent yet fiery virgin teenager – beautiful but often overlooked.

The Guy – Jared, strong, sensual and of course tall and handsome.  Horribly arrogant and stubborn and of course a wee bit of a rake.

The Setup – Both are thrown together, neither wanting to marry but forced to if they want to accept their inheritance.  In each other’s arms they find true love but then they are torn apart and separated by war and intrigue.

The Fun Parts – Consider this one a guilty pleasure it has a ton of soap opera elements all thrown together for good measure.  We have brothers taking each other’s places, spies, white slavery, mistaken identities, murder, suicide, rape, illegitimate pregnancy, kidnapping and harems.  Oh yeah and sex, lots of sex and food too (in great detail which made me really hungry as I read it).

My Gripe – This was an entertaining read, with a lot of fun elements, good historic detail and a romance I could believe in.  My only issue were the secondary characters that as soon as they  had served their drama points and would soon become an issue to our H/H’s HEA were promptly killed off and or died.  This would have been a much better book if Small had not been killing someone off conveniently every 50 pages or soo.

Rating – Solid B grade here.  A fun guilty pleasure and I will definitely seek her other books out.

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