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Thursday

Book Review: The Girl He Left Behind by Patricia Kay

 

Series: Book 2 in the ‘Crandall Lake Chronicles’

I recognized the name of the author, despite the fact that I haven’t read any of her books till date. But I have some of her titles in the Kindle.

I thought maybe I should test run the writing style, so I grabbed the book and ran out of the library at a full speed (not really).

Let’s get to the synopsis and the review of ‘The Girl He Left Behind’…

Genre: Contemporary Romance, Harlequin.

Main Characters: Eve Kelly, Adam Crenshaw.

“The Girl He Left Behind by Patricia Kay” ~~ Synopsis:

Once upon a time ago, Eve and Adam dated and almost eloped. But Eve couldn’t gather the courage to go with Adam. Adam wanted to try his luck in the music industry and wanted Eve to accompany him.

In the end he left alone.

Twelve years later….

Eve is a single mother to twins and a divorcee. She’s living a quiet life in a small town with not many prospects of getting married again. Not that she feels she’s missing out on something. But she sometimes wonders about what could have been if she’d left with Adam.  

When all of a sudden the news spreads that now famous country music star Adam would soon visit the town with his band.

Eve has yet to get over that news when she finds that Adam has landed in the town to attend to his ailing mother. The whole town is buzzing with the news and all Eve wants to do is avoid running into Adam.

Adam’s dream to make it in the music business becomes a reality by chance and for years he didn’t visit his hometown. He likes to believe he’s moved on in life, but he’s not sure.

When he finds out about his mother’s heart-attack, he leaves everything and reaches home. Once in his hometown, it’s inevitable that he’d sooner or later meet Eve.

As it turns out his feelings for Eve hasn’t changed and hers might not have either. But it seems a lot has changed in her life. She also seems to want to stay away from him, it’s obvious.

Adam wants Eve to consider giving their relationship one more chance when it’s apparent that they still feel the same. He’s not sure why she’s bent on avoiding him.

Despite doing all she’d to not run into Adam, Eve manages to meet him. She wants to spend time with him, now that she’s not married. But the more time she spends with, the more she realizes how much she still wants him and what a huge secret she’s keeping from him.

How would he react when he found out about the secret she’s keeping? She’s not even sure if she should tell him or just let everything be.

Review:

I didn’t get why Adam wasn’t angry with Eve for keeping such a huge secret from him for some flimsy reason. Since the big reveal comes near the end, Adam doesn’t get enough words and space to vent his anger.

Also,

Why he’s so agreeable to all Bill’s stupid demands when that guy has no right over the kids? I wonder whose side the court would have taken if Adam’s character had dragged it all in the court.

This Bill character seems to have mental issues to demand, not request, but demand rights to continue seeing someone else’s children as if they are his.

OK fine, I get where he’s coming from, but he or anyone in his place doesn’t really have what it take to make such demands. This character is practically bullying Eve and later Adam.

It’s not as if he doesn’t have his own child. He’s apparently happily remarried and has a child.

It seems this character wants to punish Eve for not falling in love with him. He was in love with her that’s why he offered to marry her. Also, this Bill character goes around blackmailing Eve and continues telling her “not to meet or tell Adam about his children.”

Let’s move on to the doormat – Eve.

Why Eve is almost always at the verge of a nervous breakdown? From the beginning she comes across as someone just a few steps short of going insane at most mundane things.

Why all big reveal about the kids is done just around the end? I would have liked to read about the kids’ input after finding out about their real father. They seemed unnaturally okay and happy about the deception.

I have downloaded quite a few Patricia Kay books on Kindle and after reading “The Girl He Left Behind” I’m wondering if I should mass delete them.

I cannot tolerate utopia (stupidity) like stories in Contemporary Romance.  ‘The Girl He Left Behind’ is the book I should have left behind.


Hit or Miss: Miss.

Ratings: 1star/5.

Buy:  Amazon    |   iTunes

Happy Reading!

 

Friday

Book Review: Killing Memories by Tatiana Moore

 



Series: Book 1 in the ‘Killing Memories’

"Why bother if you weren't interested in talking to someone?" ~~ Tatiana Moore (Book: Killing Memories)

The cover looked funny (the previous one) and I needed to read some mindless comedy. It’s also free. But it took me quite some time to read it or get to it amid so many other books I have stuffed my Kindle with.

Let’s find out more about ‘Killing Memories’…

Genre: Cozy Mystery.

Main Characters: Estela Ramos,

“Killing Memories by Tatiana Moore” ~~ Synopsis:

Estela refuses to date, refuses to even look in the direction of a man, who shows even a slightest interest in her. She believes it's no big deal and certainly not something worth worrying over.

But how to make people in her life understand her viewpoint, especially her domineering mother, loving aunt and her best friend Moo, who are hell-bent on finding her a nice guy.

On a regular basis, Estela has to meet someone, who one of the three women believes, could be a good match for her. So far Estela hasn't found anyone, either with the help of her well-wishers or on her own.

As per Estela, there's a flaw in the three women’s plan:

Moo's plan to set her up with someone is flawed because she'd find someone from her modeling world, who would not like or want Estela.

And her mother and aunt's plan to find Estela a date is flawed because they rarely find anyone she’d like. While attending a party thrown by Moo, Estela chats with a stranger she likes, but didn't get the chance to ask Moo about him.

As it seems Moo's dealing with something that's eating her up. Or maybe she started taking drugs again, Estella wonders.

For a while Estela forgets about the mysterious stranger as she's urgent matters at hand like meeting her family in their home, where to her shock a new date is waiting for her.

Estela meets a new guy, Dr. Martinez, her mother has chosen for her and dislikes him instantly. The moment Dr Martinez enters her life; all of a sudden, things begin to change in her life.

If before she worried only about her strained relationship with her mother and her work life, now she has to worry about a psycho stalker, who insists he loves her very much and she loves him too.

Add a gorgeous photographer, Caleb, who shows up pretty much everywhere and keeps flirting with her and hinting they have met before. Nope, he's not telling, he wants her to remember.

But:

Estela cannot remember when and where she'd met such a handsome guy and how come she forgot about it while he remembers meeting her. Estela doesn't get much time to solve the mystery of their first meeting.

Before she'd process all that is happening in her life, she finds all of a sudden she's a boyfriend, who seems to like her too much and the feeling is mutual.

Along with a stalker, who refuses to take no for an answer. What should she do?

Review:

“Killing Memories” it's hilarious. I might have ended up having some issues (mentioned below) with Estela's character yet I enjoyed reading her story a lot.

The story slows down a bit in the middle, but it picks up pace when Caleb's twin Adam shows up on the scene. It's one of those stories that you read when you want good laughter. But:

Good to know Estela has a friend like Moo, who understands her more than her mother.

Estela's self-esteem is too low. So low that sometimes I just didn't want to finish reading the book. She can stand up to Moo's parents or rather Moo's domineering mother as per Estela. There's no scene to confirm her version in this book at least.

But:

She can't stand up to her own mother, who's truly horrible. It's like all Estela's mother wants her to do is marry some psycho and lead an abusive life.

According to her 'it's not the first time her mother along with her aunt had tried to set her up with some weirdo!' Still she keeps tolerating their nonsensical interruption in her private affairs.

That's why I didn't like her sometimes because she's way too doormat-ish. All in all it’s a good comedy and it’s a cozy mystery something I miss categorized. In my defense I haven’t got much experience reading anything other than Romance and Chick-lit. Anything with funny female protagonist seems Chicklit to me.  

 

"Sometimes you don't have to say anything to get your true feeling across." ~~ Tatiana Moore (Book: Killing Memories)

 

Hit or Miss: Hit!

Ratings: 3stars/5.

Buy:  Amazon   |   iTunes 

Happy Reading!

 

Book Review: Pursued by the Rogue by Kelly Hunter

 



Series: Book 1 in the ‘Fairy Tales of New York’.

“The beauty of old friends is that you don’t have to impress them.” ~~ Kelly Hunter (Book: Pursued by the Rogue)

I thought it’s the same book I had downloaded from Smashwords. But turned out I got confused with the color of the cover.

Then I found that it’s the first in the series ‘Fairy Tales of New York’ so I downloaded it. Why miss the chance to start the series from the start.

So let’s see how “Pursued by the Rogue by Kelly Hunter” is like….

Genre: Contemporary Romance.

Main Characters: Dawn Turner, Finbar Sullivan.

“Pursued By the Rogue by Kelly Hunter” ~~ Synopsis:

At twelve when Dawn’s parents all of a sudden sent her to live with her aunt in the US. Dawn feels hurt, abandoned and unwanted. She grows up feeling unwanted, unaware of the reason behind her parents’ decision and feels like an ugly duckling.

The only good memory she’d from her childhood, was that of meeting one of her friend’s brothers Finn, who made her feel wanted & loved. But that memory too gets tainted by an accident.

Ten years later….

Dawn has everything one could ask for in life. She’s a successful businesswoman and now she knows why her parents sent her away. But knowing the reason hasn’t cured her of her hurtful feelings or changed much in her life.

Now that she knows that she has a fifty percent chance of suffering from a genetic condition her father is suffering from, she is even more determined to stay away from people.

She does not have friends and have also not tried to stay in touch with her school friends, who are eager to stay in touch with her.

So when one of her old friends suggests a reunion, Dawn’s first instinct is to say she’s busy, which is a truth in her life at the moment. Before the symptoms of the disease begin to show, Dawn wants to live her life carefree and tie up some loose ends in her business.

All relationships, as Dawn sees, are nothing but entanglements, she does not want. She also does not want to stay in touch with her old friends. She believes she can handle anything life throws at her.

Until….

She meets Finn again at the reunion. Her resolve to stay away from him begins to fade away.

Finn couldn’t forget Dawn and always hoped to meet her again. Turned out Dawn didn’t even stay in touch with his sister, so there’s no chance to meet her again.  But now that she’s reappeared, he’s hoping to find if there’s more to their attraction and if it’s something long-term.

This time he’s ready to pursue Dawn. What he does not know how to handle are her rules? She does not want anything serious and as long as he understands that, they could have a relationship.

Finn wants to know why the weird rules, but it seems Dawn’s still the girl who never shared her sorrows. But this time he’s ready to not let her go without a fight.

Review:

First, I want to know who the rogue in this dull story is. The Finn’s behavior doesn’t match the label and if I’m correct, a woman is rarely called a rogue.

Anyway, the story begins on a boring note. The author tries hard to pile up as many tragedies on Dawn as possible in this novella to get sympathy for her I guess.

I just couldn’t feel anything for Dawn and stopped myself from rolling my eyes. I don’t like these kinds of characters in romance novels, who have nothing but suffering in their life.

Only one or two conflicts in a story are enough to grab readers’ attention if done right, no need to turn a character into walking a tragedy. Then the story is so short that there’s barely any romance. One moment Dawn is pushing Finn out of her life and next moment they are celebrating their superficial HEA moment.

The ending is loaded with so much ‘sugar’ that it’s unbelievable.

As if the story is not boring enough as it is that there are one dimensional secondary characters scattered all over the story as if it’s their story. But why complain about uninteresting secondary characters when the main characters are dull as well.

There’s no spark between Dawn and Finn. They come across as one dimensional too as the author spends most of her time introducing Dawn’s other friends.

The reason: their stories are the next in the ‘Fairy Tales of New York’ series. The books in the ‘Fairy Tales of New York’ series are written by different authors.

As per my research pretty much of them wrote for Harlequin at one time, which I consider a plus point when downloading a book. But they seem to be following the same old formula from their time at that company, but the newer seems less interesting.

The only good thing I found was: ‘Pursued by the Rogue’ is a novella at best. The story is unhinged enough in its short form.   

It would have been nice if the author had turned ‘Pursued by the Rogue’ into a novel than a novella, considering all the issues main character has and all the idiotic secondary characters crowding the story need time too.

‘Pursued by the Rogue’ comes across as nothing more than an attempt to sell the next books in the series.  


 “All theoretical knowledge in the world mattered little when shit got personal.” ~~ Kelly Hunter (Book: Pursued by the Rogue)


Hit or Miss: Miss.

Ratings: 1stars/5.

Buy: Amazon     |    iTunes

Happy Reading!

 

 

Monday

Book Review: Taming the Beast by Lucy King

 


Series: Book 3 in the “Fairy Tales Of New York”

I still remember how much of a horror show ‘Pursued by the Rogue’ was for me, yet I thought, let’s read another book in this boring series.

So here I’m with a review of ‘Taming the Beast’….

Genre: Contemporary Romance.

Main Characters: Mercedes ‘Mercy’ Hernandez; Sebastian ‘Seb’ Madison.

“Taming the Beast by Lucy King” ~~ Synopsis:

While growing up, Mercy had a crush on one of her best friend’s older brother Sebastian. But now that she’s in her twenties, she thinks she’s immune to his presence.

Mercy for the sake of her friend, decides to confront Seb why he’s such a horrible elder brother. Is it really that difficult to see how much his sister and her friend need his presence in her life? Why cannot he be a decent human being for a change?

But her confrontation like the last time doesn’t go as planned. She does confront him and his indifferent attitude bothers her, but it’s so difficult to overlook their ever present attraction.

Even after years of telling herself she doesn’t feel attracted to him, turns out she feels the attraction.

After the death of his parents, Seb cut ties with almost everyone around, especially with his younger sister. It’s difficult for him to comprehend the idea that his sister wants anything to do with him, even after knowing he’s the reason why they became orphan at a young age. But as per his sister’s feisty best friend, he’s wrong and just plain mean to his sister. Seb for a change decides to take Mercy’s suggestion and get in touch with his sister.

When Mercy comes into his life once again to thank him and proposes no strings relationship, Seb wonders if it’s a good idea. He likes having Mercy around, but she also confuses and challenges him to change.

Mercy is determined to play his game and get what she wants if he agrees to her proposal. If he agrees she’d get everything she wants, she’d get him out of her system once and for all and in the meantime complete her MBA too and go back to her family business.

 She tells him she’d not fall for him. But could she keep her words?

Review:

I hoped “Taming the Beast” would be better than “Pursued by the Rogue.”

Let’s begin with: It’s a same old one; all of them are. Grumpy guilt ridden hero hiding in his home (like a beast from the fairy tale) and heroine comes in to save him from himself.

I know it’s the same old story I have been reading in all the Romance novels, BUT “Taming the Beast” manages to make the idea so boring that the very thought to finishing the book is torturous. I prevailed; sometimes I just cannot stop myself from finishing these horrible stories at all.

The Characters: Mercy and Seb is a boring couple or rather they don’t have much of anything between them to have a story. They are one of the reasons for the failure of this story.

But the most credit for the failure of this story goes to the author’s dull emotionless writing style combined with no character development or world building. This is the first time I’m reading the author’s work so my guess could be wrong.

Just like in ‘Pursued by the Rogue’ a lot of time is spent on detailing chatting of Mercy and her boring friends when all they do is talk about men in their life.

All that talk is useless could have been deleted in favor of developing some chemistry between the main characters and writing good dialogues. Goodness, I could not believe it how boring the dialogues are.

There’s not enough chemistry between the characters to believe in their fling, imagine how difficult it’d be to believe in their love that’s rushed in the end.

These are previously published Harlequin authors and frankly, these kind of boring stories aren’t what I expect from them.  

“Taming the Beast” is one of those books you’d skip reading and not miss anything.


Hit or Miss: Dull.

Ratings: 1star/5.

Buy:   Amazon   |    iTunes

Happy Reading!