Interview with Melinda Valentine

Some of you may recognize the name, Melinda Valentine as one of the authors that we’ve reviewed. Her book is called, Best Man For The Job and it is sexy, sweet, suspenseful, and a gripping read. It is the first book in the Men of Fear Incorporated series.

Here is a little bit of information about her-

Questions for Melinda Valentine

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  1. What made you want to write?

 I grew up with a love of books. my mother used to read to me as a young child. However, when I was 12 years old, I read Stephen King’s IT. That’s when I knew. I knew I wanted to be able to create something that could whisk someone away to a world I created, at least for a little while.

 

  1. Do you see yourself in any of your characters? How so?

 I think I put a piece of me in every character I write. Whether it’s physically, emotionally or mentally. Sometimes I give characteristics that I wish I had to a character.

 

  1. Do you have another job besides author?

I’ve been a bank teller for the past 4 years

 

  1. What book or author inspires you and why?

There are so many. I can’t name them all.

 

  1. What popular literary character do you think you have the most in common with?

Jo March from Little Woman comes to mind. She was wildly passionate in her pursuit to become a writer, her family meant the world to her and let’s not forget that she had a bit of a temper 😉

 

  1. Which popular literary character do you think would be your best friend or who would you like to be your best friend?

Great question! I have no idea lol

 

  1. Which popular literary character would you like to full around with, marry, and kill?

 Is this all the same character? hahaha. If so, Eric Northman, from The Sookie Stackhouse series. I will always love him, even when I hate him.

 

  1. What are you working on?

I’m just starting book 3 in the Men of Fear Incorporated series.

 

  1. What is the weirdest thing on your desk or in your writing space?

 I don’t have anything weird. Only a useless elliptical machine that serves as a reminder of how much I love Rasinets.

 

10. Other than you work, which book on your bookshelf would you recommend to your                 readers?

There are SO many. Wow. One of my favorites would have to be Hearts in Darkness by Laura Kaye. If you haven’t read it, it’s a must. Seriously…What are you waiting for?

 

  1. What is a piece of advice you’d like to give to young writers?

 Don’t ever give up. It’s not an easy task, but it’s worth it. Whether your work ends up on a publishers desk, you self publish, or if it ends up locked away with your prized possessions… There’s not much that compares with the feeling of writing The End on a manuscript.

 

  1. Is there any special quirk or fun fact that you would like to share with your fans?

Raisinets are my favorite writing snack. I can fool myself into thinking they’re good for me 😉

 

  1. Do you do any kind of research for your books or do you wing it?

Mostly, I wing it. I do research along the way as needed. Usually for make/models of various cars/motorcycles/guns. Things of that nature that I want to make sure I have right.

 

  1. Finally, what are you planning to be for Halloween?

As of right now, Little Red Riding Hood

 

Thanks Melinda! Interested in connecting with Melinda? Pick your method

Website: www.Melindavalentine.com
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Author_MelindaV
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/author.melindavalentine
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/author.melindavalentine

 

 

Not Quite Perfect Blog Tour- Catherine Bybee

Today we are pat of the Blog Tour for Catherine Bybee’s new book, Not Quite Perfect. It is number 5 in the Not Quite series but it can be read as a standalone. However, this book does have characters from the first four in the series (which I recommend you read) so their happily ever after may be spoiled for you. If you follow this blog at all, then you know I worship the ground Bybee stands on. Naturally, I was very excited to get into her new book and I’ve been not so patiently sitting on this review until it was my turn to share.

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Heat: ♥♥♥♥

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Overall Rating: 6/6 Glass Slippers

Mary is a skilled therapist but has a hard time connecting to people. Who could really blame her though? She was abandoned as a baby and more or less raised by a nun named Sister Mary Francis. Her best friend Dakota, who lives across the street, wants nothing more than to see her get a little action. And why not? Mary is an attractive and intelligent woman. But it’s definitely a lot harder to find a man you like when you’re constantly analyzing their motives or suggesting behavioral techniques. No, it’s probably better for Mary to continue to depend on the only constant in her life, herself. At least that’s what she thought until arrogant Glen walked back into her life.

Part owner of a luxury plane company and full time playboy, Glen is fine with his life. At least he thought he was. Now that he is back in the same state as Mary, he can’t keep her out of his mind. But can a cross country relationship actually work out? He is sure gonna try. After all, who better to date cross country than a man who owns a slew of planes?

Things begin to heat up for Mary and Glen until they get an urgent call from Dakota. As tragedy strikes, Mary’s life is suddenly in danger. With no suspects, there isn’t much the police can do. What if something happens and Glen can’t get to her in time? Is it time to cut the strings on this already complicated relationship? Will Mary push him away because she doesn’t need the help? But most importantly, what will it mean to the confirmed bachelor if he does stay?

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I adored this book! It is a contemporary romance with a dash of suspense, just the Bybee way. Mary really touches your heart. She is a beautifully crafted character who you want to root for, scream at, and hug all throughout the book. She doesn’t use Glen for his money (which there is a lot of) and really feel uncomfortable with the luxurious life he lives. I think this is one of the reasons that Glen falls for her. Well, that and she challenges him both in bed and in life.

The idea of a long distance relationship like this does resonate with me because I was in one. This is one of the things that amazes me about Bybee. She found a way for me to relate to the relationship between an abandoned therapist and a millionaire luxury plane owner. This is a fabulous book with just the right amount of sex appeal. The scenes do not fade to black but they also don’t cross the line. It’s perfect for a newbie romance reader. I’d recommend you stop what you’re doing and buy this book. Dinner, chores, work, whatever it is, can all wait for you to find out how things end with Mary and Glen.

 

CATHERINE BYBEE

Copyright Julianne Gentry Photography

 

BIO:

New York Times & USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bybee was raised in Washington State, but after graduating high school, she moved to Southern California in hopes of becoming a movie star. After growing bored with waiting tables, she returned to school and became a registered nurse, spending most of her career in urban emergency rooms. She now writes full-time and has penned the Weekday Brides Series and the Not Quite Series. Bybee lives with her two teenage sons in Southern California.

 

CONTACT LINKS:

www.catherinebybe.com

catherinebybee@yahoo.com

catherinebybee.blogspot.com

facebook.com/AuthorCatherineBybee

twitter.com/catherinebybee

pinterest.com/catherinebybee

instagram.com/catherinebybee

 

 

NOT QUITE PERFECT

Not Quite Series, Book Five

Montlake Romance, Contemporary

September 20, 2016, First Edition

Paperback & Kindle

With true love, there’s no such thing as a safe distance.

 

Praise for the Not Quite Series

“Bybee’s magnetic fourth Not Quite contemporary proves that romance can happen in the most unlikely places…The love scenes are sizzling and the multidimensional characters make this a page-turner. Readers will look for earlier installments and eagerly anticipate new ones.”

Publishers Weekly on Not Quite Forever

 

” Not Quite Dating offers a sweet and satisfying Cinderella fantasy that will keep you smiling long after you’ve finished reading…”

USA Today, Happy Ever After

 

“Bybee’s gift for creating unforgettable romances cannot be ignored. [Not Quite Enough] will sweep readers away to a paradise, and they will be intrigued by the thrilling story that accompanies their literary vacation.”

  • RT Book Reviews, Top Pick

 

BUY LINKS:

Amazon

 

Barnes and Noble

 

Books A Million

 

Book Depository

Absolution

Hello, alpha male romance enthusiasts! It’s time for another Penelope Marshall book titled Absolution, a companion novel to Unleashed, a particularly titillating drama. So, are you ready for deep emotions, hot heat, and a twisted woman out for revenge?

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Heat Level:♥♥♥♥♥

Overall Rating: 5/6 Glass Slippers

Genre: Military Romance

Adeline is grieving, working hard to put the pieces of her life together. Her fiance, Ezra, died at war and now visits her in her dreams, both giving her comfort and tearing her apart. Things are made more difficult due to her living situation. Adeline still lives in the home she shared with Ezra and his fellow soldier Cole, as well as Cole’s girlfriend Catherine. While their presence could be comforting, Adeline feels misplaced anger at Cole surviving his deployment while Ezra did not.

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But when Cole and Catherine break up and Catherine is forced to move, Cole and Adeline form a bond that teeters on the edge of something more. But there’s something else getting in the way than just Ezra’s ghost and it might be more dangerous than either of them could imagine.

Overall, it was a nice read. The scenes were fast paced, the sex a solid romp, and the emotions raw. There was also some unexpected twists that I certainly didn’t expect, which says a lot due to the amount of books I read in a single week. So, if you like some action with your romance and a story that could totally be true, get your copy of Absolution now.

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A Perfect Plan

I’m always particularly excited to get a historical romance, for obvious reasons, so when Alyssa Drake sent me A Perfect Plan, the first book in the Wiltshire Chronicles, I put it right on my calender.

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Heat Level:♥♥♥♥♥

Overall Rating: 4/6 Glass Slippers

Genre: Historical Romance

Samantha Hastings is a free-spirited young woman who moved in with her widowed sister-in-law, Wilhelmina, after her brother’s untimely death. The plan is for her to help manage his estate until she find a husband, something Wilhelmina takes to heart. But Sam isn’t going down the aisle without a fight. Enter Lord Benjamin Westwood, an old friend of Sam’s brother, a monied hardbody who has been deemed the most eligible bachelor that season, and Sam’s new guardian. Well, anyway, Westwood decides he was going to go get himself a wife, and save everyone the hassle of playing matchmaker. Now, if there was only a young lady who was available, had money, was trustworthy, and amused him enough to tie himself to her forever?

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You know where that’s going. Westwood and Sam sitting in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g. But, this isn’t just a romance, there’s some serious shit going on outside of the ballroom. Sam’s brother’s death might not be all that it seems and danger might be lurking around every bend.But you might have to wait to find out that danger in the rest of the series!

There were just a few little things that bothered me about this book. The first was the cover models. They didn’t match, as the woman looked like she was ready for a 1950’s debutant ball and the man seemed as if he walked right out of a modern day GQ Magazine. But, since authors rarely have final say on their cover art, it’s hard to fault her on that. There were also some historical inaccuracies that probably wouldn’t bother someone outside of my field of study, so we won’t even bother with those. The format of the ebook was also a choppy mess with large gaps that made it slightly annoying to read. Other reviewers have said the same, so I’m fairly sure that it isn’t just a problem with my copy.

Despite some errors, I did enjoy Drake’s voice in the book and how she gave life to Sam. I thoroughly enjoy any historical romance with some old-fashioned humor, of which Sam provided plenty.

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Love Affair in Venice

Sarah has reviewed other books by Jackie Wang before, Landlady and Fugitive, so I decided to see what the deal was by downloading a copy of Love Affair in Venice while it was free! I mean, honestly, I thought the cover looked beautiful and I’m a huge fan of Italy, so I was in a Venice mood.

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Heat Level: 5/6 Hearts

Overall Rating: 4/6 Glass Slippers

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Vanessa is hot, sassy, filthy rich, and recently burned by her good for nothing ex-fiance. His betrayal caused her to write off men for good…well, not really, because when is that ever true? Anyways, she meets a sweet-talking gondolier named Marco with a daughter. But cultures and duty can get in the way of feelings, something that the fashion mogul knows too well. And once a man from her past puts his life on the line for her, she may forget about Venice forever, thrusting her fully back into her old world.

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There were some issues with this book that kept popping up. There were more than a few grammatical errors, but that could be easily fixed with a good editor. However, It was the missing words that I struggled to look past the most. I also found it a bit unrealistic that she was so easy to fall in love and the word was thrown around so easily after short meeting. However, I tried to ignore the swiftness as, in fiction, there’s a lot of untrue stuff that goes on. Like, I don’t see any kids fighting it out in a high-tech arena like in The Hunger Games and, unfortunately, no big-ass rock is going to take me to a Highland hottie like in Outlander.

One thing I really appreciated in this book was the use of a wealthy woman who held all the chips. She wasn’t the maid in the millionaire’s hotel or a struggling single mother who meets a flashy doctor at the hospital, but a mega billionaire in her own right, something that I can truly get behind.

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Outlander Season 3- “Voyager” Hopes

Spoilers to the Max!

Caution: This contains Outlander season 3/Voyager Spoilers! Read no further if you haven’t read the the third Outlander series book!

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Now that you’ve been warned, are you ready to talk about Voyager and what might come in season three of Outlander on Starz?

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We give the show a lot of love, but thought it might be time to talk about the books this week on Outlander Saturday! Since Sarah hasn’t read past book two, I’m here to chat it up with you about my favorite parts in Voyager and what I’m looking forward to seeing in season three on television.

A final reminder, if you hate spoilers, don’t read any further.

♥Jamie’s return to Lallybroch

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It’s going to be sad, seeing Jamie wounded and hiding in Dun Bonnet’s Cave for so many years with only a few books to keep him company. As you probably read on our Legends of Outlander post, there was a real-live man named James Fraser who hid in a care and was nicknamed Dun Bonnet by the cap he wore. Nice connection, Diana!I love seeing history come to life and see how things connect. Something I’m not too thrilled about seeing it when little Fergus get’s caught up in the traitor madness and looses his crafty little hand. I assume more than one tear shall be shed for our tiny adopted Fraser.

♥Friends Foreverrrrr

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Y’all know that this relationship is one for the ages. I’m not saying it’s romantic, you know Jamie only has eternal eyes for Claire, but his friendship with Lord John Grey is going to be one of the cornerstones for the series, moving forward. Without Lord John Grey, Jamie’s time in prison, and his later reunion with his biological son, might never be possible. Although, it looks like they’re setting it up to be more romantic in the show than it was in the books, something I’m not really into, as I think their complicated friendship in the series was compelling and deep. I almost feel like making it sound like a torrid love affair, like in some other blog posts and news stories, cheapens their dynamic relationship. If only the show series could do a chapter an episode!

♥Meeting Geneva

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This is going to be tough for all those who love Claire and Jamie. I’m going to be honest, I think Geneva is a grade A asshole. Blackmailing Jamie into sex was a low blow and the man’s life has been tough enough. I know I’ll have a rage stroke when she throws out the “bang me or I’ll scream rape” card. At least Jamie can see some joy in the terrible union by his son William grow for a few years. But seeing as how happy he was knowing Claire was pregnant when she left, It’ll be tough seeing him watch his child from afar.

♥Baby Jamie

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Jamie and his interactions with his secret son is going to be interesting. Their sweet doings takes up a good chunk of book, and for good reason. We all read, and saw, how into being a father Jamie was when Claire was pregnant with Faith and how important it was for Claire to go back to Frank for the safety of their unborn child. It’s going to be bittersweet to see how young Willie sees a father figure in Jamie and Jamie longs to be close to a child he never thought he’d have, after Claire’s leaving. Their bond in the books might be hard to portray on screen, but Starz has done an awesome job, so far.

♥The Highlight of the Year

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I know for a damn fact that I’m not the only person who ugly cried when Claire went through the stones and later learned that Jamie was alive all along. While I understand that she needed to go for her own safety, it’s like she’s still twenty years too late to their reunion. I’m already preparing myself for the Kim Kardashian-like sobs when she finally sees him in the print shop. I’m also dying to see how well Jamie aged. I’m guessing it’s like a fine, beautifully kilted, wine… although he’ll be unkilted for a lot of the season, and not always in the fun way. The fact that we’ll probably have to wait a few episodes for this glorious meeting adds a certain level of delicious suspense. At least it’ll be a smoother journey for Claire, as Roger and Bree help her get the cash and clothes necessary for a successful jaunt through time. Speaking of Roger and Bree, watching them say goodbye to Claire will be another depressing sight. But, hey, Claire did right by her kid and her promise to Jamie, so she deserves to have some Highlander goodness up in her petticoats.

♥The Scorned Second Wife

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Dis Bitch is right. Ya’ll probably know that I feel Laoghaire is a dirty home wrecking hussy and no one deserves to get lumpy and gross in their old age more than her…well, except for Black Jack Randall… not that he lives long enough for that. Well, anyways, her coming out of the woodwork again to claim Jamie as her rightful husband is something I’m looking forward too. Like, I get how she saw Jamie as the one that got away but, damn girl, have some self respect! I wouldn’t tie myself for a man who was constantly wishing I was someone else, no matter how hot he was. BTW I’m all sour grapes on how Jenny lashes out at Claire and rats to Loaghaire, even thought Claire told her the potato-planting key to Lallybroch’s survival. I hope Loaghaire’s gun-toting dramatics are just as wild on the screen as they are on the page.

♥High Seas Misadventure

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Poor Jamie can’t catch a break. He, along with Claire and Marsali, go to rescue Ian and he’s stuck vomiting with seasickness while Claire is basically kidnapped by the Porpoise, because the ocean has never been kind to Jamie. Like, universe, give the man a break! All he wants is to live the quiet life and plant some crops and make sweet love to his new found wife, not be held captive and taken towards prison. At least he’s conveniently shipwrecked near Claire. Small victories. I’m curious to see how this will play out since, in the book, their oceanic struggles is a large chunk of action.

♥The Return of Geillis

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Gonna be real, I’m pumped for the return of Geillis. I know she’s a murderer, adulteress, and all around baddie, but I’m really excited to see her return in all her crazy glory. You have to admire her vicious tenacity and the way she unraveled thousands of years of legends and myths to learn about time travel. Sure, she could have gone around without human sacrifices, but I admire a bitch with flair. I mean, if she had really been killed before having her son, a certain green-eyed man wouldn’t be able to grace us with his presence! So, sacrifice away, you gloriously creepy time traveler, you!

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Yeah, I know this isn’t every tasty morsel of Voyager goodness, only some of my personal favs. Tell me in the comments, what are you most excited for in season three?

Read more about Kelsey, and her Scottish romance series, on her About page!

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Mowed

I admit it, I’m a fan of basically everything Grace Risata writes, such as My Dirty Detour and Nights in the Fast Lane. So, I went into her newest book, Mowed, with high hopes and a highball in my hand.

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Heat Level:♥♥♥♥♥♥

Overall Rating:

Genre: BBW Romantic Comedy

Omg, you guys, this book literally opens with a passage from a romance novel that includes such phrases as “pale milky orbs of love”, “hot man juice”, and “moist love cave”. Our main girl Pepper is literally like ew, wtf? But, she’s still longing for a hottie to reenact those steamy scenes with, as her only lovers lately have been two men named Ben and Jerry.

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Pepper’s a curvy lady, whose size might have caused her last boyfriend to leave her in the dust. He sounded like a boring asshole, but when you live in a small town, pickings for men are as slim as pickings for plus-seized pants. But that might change when her high school crush Jason, King of the Six Pack, moves back to her street after years of big city living. Without missing a beat, he tells Pepper he wants to fuck her crazy with no strings attached. What a change from the hot jock who never spared her a second glance.

Anyways, much like Risata’s other books, this one was a gut buster of a good time. It had sex, jokes, love, and small town bullshit that will drive you as crazy as it did Pepper. Pick up a copy for a plus size read with an even bigger storyline.

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Choosing Happy 

Choosing Happy Book Tour with Xpresso Book Tours

Choosing Happy is the sequel to Somewhere In Between and book 2 in the Madison Square series by Samatha Harris. If you plan to read this book then I suggest you read it first. However, I won’t put any spoilers in this review.

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Heat: ♥♥♥♥

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Overall Rating: 4.5 Glass Slippers

Sean is the typical goofball/ladies man. His smile will make you weak at the knees and his jokes will leave you in stitches. The only problem is that he is alone and can’t seem to make a relationship last. That is until he meets a woman with legs for days and a sad smile. Suddenly, it becomes his mission in life to do whatever he can to make her happy… And I must say, I quite like several of his methods.

Maddie spent most of her marriage trying to please her husband. That was how she was brought up, and that was what she thought she wanted. That is until one nineteen year old with perky boobs and a fiesty attitude changed everything. Her husband divorced her and Maddie was left a little lost. What was she going to do now that she didn’t have someone to cater to? Yes, she had the big powerful job with a fabulous assistant but was she truly happy?

Maddie gets a makeover and begins to try to find out exactly what she wants in life. A young man with fire in his eyes and a bright smile on his face seems to be the answer. That is until emotions begin to cloud her judgment and Sean wants more than just a good time.

She has always done what’s right and what her family expects. Now that someone unexpected has lot a fire in her, will she let it die out because that’s what she should do, or will she feed it and let the blaze burn down her old life?

Okay, let’s get the obvious out of the way. Sean is a lot younger than Maddie. I don’t let age bother me because I firmly believe it’s just a number and shouldn’t effect relationships, but I know some people have an issue with that.

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However, I fell in love with Sean in the first book and I was really excited when Harris announced this book. I desperately wanted him to find someone to treat him right. He is a lovely character and he certainly knows how to please a woman.

I had mixed feelings about Maddie. On the one hand, I definitely understand the demands your family can force on you, if you don’t believe me then just ask anyone about how crazy my mother and grandmothers are. But I wanted Maddie to have some fire in her belly. I felt myself waiting for her to explode and I was a little let down. On the other hand, she was such a sweet and lovable character that I almost didn’t mind.

The world that Harris has created is fun, sexy, and real. Sometimes I feel like romances have crazy characters that couldn’t exist in the real world, however I feel like the Madison Square world could exist. If it did, I’d love to live in one of those apartments and have a beer at The Den.

This is a sexy book with sexy scenes. After all, Sean and Maddie start off their relationship with a no strings sexual experience. I don’t think she crossed the line to erotica though so they are enjoyable and only a slight blush may fill your cheeks if you read this book in public. But isn’t that part of the fun?

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Taming Beauty

With all the talk of Beauty and the Beast lately, I was really excited to come across Taming Beauty by Lynne Barron. It is a historical romance taking its shot at a tale as old as time.

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Heat: ♥♥♥♥

Genre: Historical Romance

Overall Rating 5/6 Glass Slippers

Lilith did not have a normal upbringing in London’s society. Her father is an Earl who had a tendency to wander and her mother is a courtesan. Lilith spent years learning the art of seduction while her peers were taught embroidery.

Jasper is the Barron of Malleville but is known as the Grim because of his temper and outlook on life. His only dream is to restore his family’s wealth and property. So he makes a deal with the Earl to marry his daughter, Sissy. Her dowry is vital to his plans.

There is only one thing he didn’t plan on, Lilith. She is beautiful, sassy, and shooting him bedroom eyes. Is it love? Is it lust? Or maybe she has a different plan all together that will benefit her family but not the Barron.

Will the beauty tame the beast or will she trick him into submission?

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It’s been a while since I read a historical romance and I have missed them. Barron wrote a fabulous book. I was worried that it would be a copy cat of the initial story but really it’s completely different. I was kept guessing as to how the story was going to resolve. It certainly didn’t go where I thought.

Lilith was a different type of character that we usually don’t hear about in historicals. I liked her attitude and her love for her “sisters” and grandmother.

Now, grandma is also a courtesan and she is famous for it. I loved her and I want to meet this woman. She was so lively and fun. Really all of Barron’s characters were fantastic and they all seemed to jump off the page. There were a lot of them but I didn’t get confused or mix anyone up. I can’t wait to read Barron’s next book.

As for the more intimate moments. Well, Lilith comes from a long line of women of the night. Barron does take the more sexual scenes and includes them. I felt they were exciting and perfectly paced. But they maybe aren’t for a new romance reader.