Review: The Boy Who Has No Hope (Soulless #6) by Victoria Quinn

TitleThe Boy Who Has No Hope
Author:  Victoria Quinn
Publisher/Year:  Victoria Quinn 10/6/20
Length:  197 Pages
Series: Soulless #6

Overview

I have a secret that I’ve never told Derek, simply because it’s something I never share with anyone. He has his secrets, I have mine.

But when a late night takes an unexpected turn, I realize the truth will have to come out.

Until he figures it out on his own…and that makes it a million times worse.

My Thoughts

Oh how I love this series – seeing what we had in the first several books and now getting to know Derek even more. There’s so much depth to him since we know that he’s got the brains of his father and the compassion of his mother. He’s now also got Emerson who’s able to show him the lighter side of things, and hopefully break through his walls.

Trust. that’s what this story takes a big focus on, and in gaining that trust, Emerson’s able to gain access to the heart and soul of Derek. At the same time, Derek’s able to truly begin to enjoy things that he’s accomplished and become the man that he was destined to be. Throughout this sixth installment, we watch the evolution from boss/employee to friends and perhaps to something more.

We have always known that there was an attraction between these two even if they didn’t truly even admit it to themselves. We watched how their friendship becomes integral to who they are and necessary in order to survive. They bring out the best in each other, and at times when Derek takes that for granted, or when Emerson pushes too hard, we see what that means and how it shapes their relationship.

Derek has this fear and refusal of all media/press/interviews because he’s too traumatized by the failure of the rocket explosion all those years ago and he carries the guilt. Even though it wasn’t his fault and even though he tried everything in his power to keep the launch from happening, he still carries that on his soul, and it’s Emerson who forces Derek to address it, to see a therapist and to even do a TED talk, and we see that it has such a positive impact on Derek that we can only hope for better things.

If you’ll remember, the one thing that brought these two together initially was the book that Derek was due to write. Well, we have seen so much progress up until now, watching Emerson redirect his mind so that he could focus on the story that it’s no surprise that he was able to finish the story in just a matter of months. What comes of their relationship from here is anyone’s guess knowing that there was a foundation with this necessary goal in mind.

There’s also the underlying story from Emerson’s side that we start to see play out which is teased in the summary above. We know that she takes care of her parents – and we know that part of the reason that she took the job in the first place working for Derek was the money that she could make – knowing that it would help afford surgery for her father, and a separate apartment for her parents to live in so she could have space. What we didn’t know is that part of the need for space was because Emerson has a daughter. YUP – a daughter.

You can imagine the shock that comes to readers on this since we didn’t have any hint of that at all, but knowing that there’s something growing between her and Derek, and knowing that he’s opposed to children, there’s nothing good that will come of this. When we see them make progress as somethign more, and then he learns of her daughter – well, the story drops out from under us.

We can only hope for the best and hope that Derek and Emerson can have what Cleo and Deacon have, but we also know that there’s so much against them. Not only is there the notion of the daughter, we also can’t forget that Derek is still not over what happened with his ex-fiance and that continues to come up again and again. We even see it in the last chapter when Derek’s best friend tells him that he’s getting married, and that his ex and the man she cheated on him with will be at the wedding. There’s bound to be confrontation, heart break, soul wrenching experiences and hopefully a bit of passion to take us through to the next installment. I can’t wait. Enjoy!

Review: The Boy Who Has No Faith (Soulless #5) by Victoria Quinn

TitleThe Boy Who Has No Faith
Author:  Victoria Quinn
Publisher/Year:  Victoria Quinn 8/21/20
Length:  191 Pages
Series: Soulless #5

Overview

I just landed my dream job as an editor at the esteemed publisher, Astra Books, and my client is the infamous sci-fi writer Derek Hamilton.The greatest writer of our generation–in my opinion.But it’s not as wonderful as I thought it would be. I can’t get this guy to respond to my emails, texts, or phone calls. Whenever I get him on the phone, he’s a jerk that hangs up on me.He’s a pain in the you-know-where.Yes, he’s gorgeous…but he makes my life a living hell.When I corner him at his penthouse, I discover that he hasn’t submitted his manuscript because he’s too busy with his day job…as an aeronautical engineer. The guy owns his own company building rockets and other innovations. He’s also a professor of engineering at NYU.Of course he doesn’t have time to write his next book…with a schedule like that.But I have to get him to write this book otherwise I’m going to lose my job.Now I just have to figure out how to do that…

My Thoughts

We wrapped up the story of Deacon and Cleo and it was wonderful to see how their complicated story turned out. They got their happily ever after, which meant that we knew there was more on the docket for Derek, Deacon’s oldest son, and the boy who we grew to love in the first few books. We’re introduced now to Derek when he’s fresh out of college, and on the eve of his own wedding.

As you can imagine, knowing that life until now things weren’t smooth, this wedding couldn’t go off without a hitch. Derek is so in love with Tabitha that we think that the biggest complexities will come once they are married and trying to build a life together, yet we never get to see that happen because Derek overhears a conversation between Tabitha and his best friend Kevin, talking about an affair that they had together that lasted for at least a month. Derek’s heart is broken, and we have a great view at the downfall of the man that he could have been.

We’re now about 10 years into the future, where Derek has made a name for himself working at NASA on rockets, developing technology that betters several different industries. He’s a professor at NYU and he’s an accomplished author. The challenge though is that he’s put up all the walls that would allow someone close enough to care about, someone that would give him a reason to be the man that he could be.

Enter Emerson- exactly what Derek needs but won’t admit. Emerson has just landed a job as an editor at the publishing house that Derek’s signed to, and of course, when Derek has put all else as priority before the book that he was due to finish a year ago, she’s after him like you wouldn’t believe. She makes contact after contact with Derek in the hopes of getting somewhere and yet she fails. When she manages a small win, her life quickly changes.

Her success at making Derek see that he has to do ‘something’ catches Cleo’s eye, and we quickly see Emerson’s role change in this story. She goes from being an editor to being a personal assistant, doing for Derek what Cleo did for Deacon. Make this strong and authoritative, powerful, sexy man realize that he needs someone to care for him for more than his money. To make his life easier, and at the same time, we know from the success that Deacon and Cleo had, to have Derek and Emerson realize what they’re each missing in a partner.

Emerson slowly breaks through the walls that are up in Derek’s life – showing him that by allowing someone to help with a few tasks here and there, that he can find time to do the things that he loves. By allowing Emerson to help unclutter his life, he’s able to open up the side of his brain that’s creative, that’s more human and that’s the side that everyone loves.

Derek realizes that there’s something about Emerson that wakes him up – his creative side sure, but his passion and his need for something not quite so empty. There’s a challenge though because they are in a boss / employee situation, and neither has really opened the door for anything more between each other.

We watch Deacon and Cleo push Derek to be open to a future with someone that can love him and in return love her – and yet he’s still not open to that. His traumas from the past with his mom, failed marriage attempt and even challenges with his profession in the past have made for a man who’s not willing to ease up because he needs the control. We’re left at a point in this story where he says he’ll consider being more open, yet we know that’s not going to happen quite so easily. It’ll be interesting to see what Emerson has to do in order to get Derek to open up, yet we also know that she sees him for the persona that he puts out there and perhaps there’s really no opportunity anyway. So….i’m off to the next book because I can’t wait to see how this plays out. Enjoy!

Review: The Man Who Has No Sight (Soulless #4) by Victoria Quinn

TitleThe Man who Has No Sight
Author:  Victoria Quinn
Publisher/Year:  Victoria Quinn 8/21/20
Length:  190 Pages
Series: Soulless #4

Overview

Valerie got between us just like I feared she would.And completely destroyed me.But I believe Deacon and I can make it work, that I can have the family I’ve always wanted…if I just have faith.

My Thoughts

They’ve turned a corner. There’s a slow build and evolution to what Deacon and Cleo are and what they can become. They way they feel about one another hasn’t changed and it’s just a matter of getting to the comfort level that they were at before that is necessary for them to move on.

What we have in this fourth installment though is a turn of progress in the entire nature of the story. Valeri shows her true colors with her role of being a mother. Deacon assumed that she had gotten pregnant on purpose all those years ago to suck him in and take his money. To have the life that she always wanted but had no chance of achieving on her own. It’s proven yet again when her relationship with Jake takes a new turn, and we see that she’s prioritizing that over Derek and everything else.

That means that we get to see Deacon turn into the full time parent, and at the same time, take advantage of Cleo’s generosity. He doesn’t realize what it means to be a single parent of sorts, to be the one that’s responsible for his child, and when he doesn’t want to compromise on a solution, it causes even bigger issue. Cleo has to put her job aside when she shouldn’t in order to take care of Derek an when she’s offered up the idea of a nanny, Deacon shoots it down. It’s frustrating as a reader to see how unwilling he is to find a solution, but at the same time, it’s admirable that he wants to be so hands on.

There are other parts to the story that we see evolve. Tucker’s relationship with Pria seems to be continuing on the same strong path and Pria seems to be a great girl. We get to see the more mature side of Tucker as well when Cleo needs a shoulder to lean on. We watch Margo really show her true mamma colors when there’s an unfortunate circumstance during Thanksgiving and that makes us love her even more.

What you’ll remember from the last story before Deacon and Cleo went down the wrong path in their relationship, there was talk about marriage. Talk about babies. Hope for the future. We know that’s all put on pause, but I think that we still want to see it happen. Cleo even goes to visit her ex husband because she’s come to a realization of sorts that her marriage to him wasn’t out of the right sort of love.

Oh, and don’t forget Kathleen Hawthorne – the dr that we know is interested in Deacon and that puts Cleo on edge. You’ll have to read this story to fully understand what goes down there and what it means for their future.

We’re left with a resolution and closure of sorts to their story – seeing what could have been and what will be for Deacon and Cleo and Derek and Valerie. I get the sense now that we’re going on a new journey with a ‘boy’ instead of a ‘man’ so I can’t wait to dive into the next book ASAP. Enjoy!

Review: The Man Who Has No Love (Soulless #3) by Victoria Quinn

TitleThe Man who Has No Love
Author:  Victoria Quinn
Publisher/Year:  Victoria Quinn 7/21/20
Length:  178 Pages
Series: Soulless #3

Overview

I finally got Valerie to give Deacon what he wants.

To move to the city so the three of them can be together.

I just have to give her one thing…a penthouse in my building. That means I’ll have to see her, talk to her, and worst of all, assist her. But no matter how difficult she is, her being here means Derek will be here…and that makes it all worth it.

Until she gets between Deacon and I…and rips us apart.

My Thoughts

We all know that nothing is easy and in this story specifically, there’s certainly no ease on the horizon. We know that at the end of book two, Cleo had managed to do the impossible, she had convinced Valerie to move with Derek to New York. The hitch is that it had to be in the same building and she wanted Cleo to wait on her night and day. Cleo of course would do anything for Deacon, so she made it happen.

We know that this is going to get far worse before it gets better. Remember that Valerie thought that Deacon and Cleo were together, and Cleo convinced her that she was with Tucker. So that means that in addition to having to keep up a lie for the sake of Cleo’s job, we have to watch them do it for the sake of Derek and keeping the family as close together as possible.

Things seem to be playing out well. Deacon’s introduced Cleo to his mom as his girlfriend now which is a new step and Margo is thrilled that Deacon’s found happiness. Tucker has moved on with his own girl who seems to be pretty cool and that makes this a well balanced group of characters. Until of course we remember that Valarie is there and she’s vindictive. In every sense of the word.

She doesn’t want to do all the things a caring parent should, taking Derek to his parent teacher conference etc, and has Cleo do it instead. Which frankly is no stress on Cleo given that she loves Derek. What becomes a problem though is one night when Cleo walks into Valerie’s apartment to drop off mail and low and behold, JAKE is there. And not only do we know that Valerie wants Cleo to report back to Deacon that she’s moved on, but we know that there’s intense bad blood between Jake and Cleo.

What happens next is no surprise. Jake tells valerie of his past with Cleo, who then runs to Deacon and shares the information. Which of course causes a huge blow up because Deacon now believes that Cleo isn’t the woman that he thought she was. We watch Cleo’s world crash down.

She’s lost Deacon

She now loses her job because either Jake or Valerie ratted her out to the building

She’s lost all prospect on a happy or even unhappy life in New York and she gets ready to move to Washington.

There are a variety of events that happen that take us on a dark journey with Cleo – watch her downward spiral of her life, and really wish that something else could come along for her. Being a new yorker, i’m still not sure how she lost her apartment after just one month knowing the money that she made, but then again, I don’t know what her expenses were. But she’s forced to move to a studio in a bad neighborhood in Brooklyn before she moves west to where her family is. She has no job prospect because she’s not hireable and the last part of her heart and soul is now gone.

Deacon’s no better to be honest. while his life goes on, part of his heart and soul are dead and it brings out a side of Deacon that we’ve never seen.

It’ll be a wonder who can help solve this mess, if it’s even salvagable and I wonder what that means for the rest of the story. we want Deacon and Cleo to be happy but that ship seems to have sailed. We want Valerie to suffer but she always seems to have the upper hand. I’m not sure where this story will go, but i’m sure going to read book four and find out. Enjoy!

Review: The Man Who Has No Heart (Soulless #2) by Victoria Quinn

TitleThe Man who Has No Heart
Author:  Victoria Quinn
Publisher/Year:  Victoria Quinn 6/23/20
Length:  185 Pages
Series: Soulless #2

Overview

Deacon Hamilton was supposed to be just a client.

And I don’t date clients.

Well, not anymore.

But I’ve fallen in love with his son, fallen in love with our trips to the cabin…and now I can’t be with Tucker anymore.

Not when Deacon is the man I want.

So I’m just going to tell him.

And hope for the best.

My Thoughts

UGh….this series was taking us on the most insane journey in the first book that we know the roller coaster was going to get intense. What we have in this second book is a mix of emotion, turmoil, hope and dispair. If you’ll remember, we watched how Cleo began to truly understand how Deacon operated – was able to get under his skin and truly become his friend. At the same time she started to let Tucker under her skin and begin what could be an amazing relationship, albeit a bit awkward given the brother tie there. Add to the mix Derek, Deacon’s son who everyone adored and yet still coudlnt’ have in New York because of Deacon’s ex wife. So, such a mix.

There’s one other story line here that we can’t underestimate. Jake – the tenant in the building that Cleo had a relationship with previously, and who isn’t willing for that to be over. He’s still interested in pursuing her, he got divorced to be with her and she’s not interested. He’s going to stir up trouble – this is something that i’m sure of. I think that he’s got a vendetta now against her and once he truly realizes what’s going on with Cleo, well, that means that all hell will break loose.

In this second book, we watch how the dynamic between everyone shifts. We watch how Cleo does more for Deacon than even he realized he needed. When he expressed his love for the outdoors after sharing an image of him and his son, Cleo locates the perfect lake cabin for him to buy. This becomes their solace – their getaway, and when they’re able to bring Derek, it’s their family home. Backing up a second, we watch how Cleo is really capable of doing the impossible. She’s convinced Valerie to let her bring Derek to New York for Deacon’s birthday, and even towards the end of the story she manages even more – to work an angle to get Valerie to move east so Derek could live closer to Deacon. There’s a price though, and that’s the cliff that we’re left on.

There’s so much going on in this story that it’s hard to pick one story line to follow. Do we choose to watch the evolution of Tucker and Cleo – and how deacon gets in the middle of it. Do we watch how Cleo and Deacon grow closer together only to have things shattered when Deacon breaks Cleo’s heart. Do we sit on the edge of our seats knowing that Jake is going to blow up everything that Cleo has worked hard for, and in the back of my mind, do we know that Valerie and Jake will some how team up and bring things to a crashing halt?

The heat and passion in this series is amped up a level in this second book, especially as we see characters getting more invested in one another. There are deep emotional and physical connections across the board, regardless if it’s a romantic relationship or just one of family or friend. We see trust grow and get shattered. We see deceit and we see conniving. But at the end of it all we see hope, and wonder if that hope is enough to carry the story through. So, that all being said – you know what i’m going to say. I’m off to get book 3 because I HAVE to see what happens next. Enjoy!

Review: The Boss (The Chateau #3) by Penelope Sky

Title: The Boss
Author:  Penelope Sky
Publisher/Year:  Hartwick Publishing 3/23/21
Length:  290 Pages
Series: The Chateau #3

Overview

It’s complicated.

Am I allowed to say that?

Am I allowed to use that as an excuse to feel something toward the man that runs this place, is the reason I’m here in the first place, as well as my sister Raven?

They call him The Boss. I call him Fender.

And he calls me Beautiful.

I can tell myself I’m just using him to get what I want.

But we both know that’s not true.

My Thoughts

The first two installments of this series were about Magnus and Raven – we watched how the actions on an ill-fated night by Melanie ended up getting them captured and sent to a camp to help a drug lord. We watched Raven’s never ending quest for freedom, and Melanie’s guilt for getting the captured, how she follows Raven where ever she goes, but at the same time we watched how the Boss – Fender took a liking to Melanie, and this is what we get in the second half of the series.

Where this third installment picks up is the first time that Fender sets his eyes on Melanie at the camp. He’s been snared by her beauty – and even though he’s always surrounded himself with beautiful women, there’s something about Melanie that soars above and beyond. He wants to give her comforts at camp that he’s never given to any other woman that was brought there. He wants to take care of her and wants to ‘own’ her in a sense, but he won’t do it unless she’s willing. so we spend much of the front half of this story watching how this slowly begins to happen.

Melanie on the other hand is stuck in this limbo of truly doing what’s right given the situation, and yet fighting what her body is telling her. She’s afraid of him, yet Fender continues to remind her that he won’t hurt her or force her to do anything. She wants to get her freedom back and she more than anything wants Raven’s freedom. If only her sister didn’t constantly cause trouble….maybe that would be possible.

Over time we watch the relationship develop between Melanie and Fender. There’s still.a significant gray area around what they are and what they can be, but we see that there’s something that’s starting to grow here. Fender continues to share nothing about himself, and broods and is angry all the time, yet Melanie has patience.

Fender takes her back to Paris with him when he leaves camp, and makes it clear that Melanie is his – that she’s not going to go free, but she will have the life that she deserves. We watch the transformation come over Melanie once she’s under the guidance and care of Fender’s household. We see the role that Fender’s butler plays – both with Melanie and with Fender since the relationships there are so complicated.

If you’ll remember from the first two books, there’s the drive and need for Fender to amass more. to be the biggest and the best distributor and he’ll stop at nothing. Magnus was the voice of reason throughout those first two books, but we saw that it didn’t matter. Now we’re getting the chance to see how that played out from the other side, knowing that Fender was stubborn and that nothing good could come out of what he’s trying to do .

If you’ll also remember from the first two books, Magnus managed to help Raven escape the camp and brought her back to Paris. They also went to Fender and asked for Melanie’s release. Fender didn’t think that Mel would actually go, so he allowed it and that’s where we ended this first book of Fender/Melanie’s story. We see what was starting to be an intense romantic relationship come to a crashing halt – and we can only imagine the implications that will result knowing that Fender doesn’t take well to people who lie to him, cross him and take things that he deems to be his. I can’t wait for the next installment to come along since I really need to see how this plays out from a different angle. Enjoy!

Review: Mafia Bride (The DiLustro Arrangement #1) by CD Reiss

Title: Mafia Bride
Author:  CD Reiss
Publisher/Year:  Paige Press 3/14/21
Length:  250 Pages
Series: The DiLustro Arrangement #1

Overview

Some girls dream of marrying a prince, but I never imagined I’d be sold to a king.

Santino DiLustro.

The king. 
The monster. 
The keeper of secrets.

When he forced me to marry him, I cried for love I’d never know.
When he locked me away, I cried for the freedom I lost forever.
Every other tear I’ve shed is for my soul, because I’m falling for the devil himself.

My Thoughts

I haven’t read anything by CD Reiss in a minute and i’m so happy to have found this first installment in the series. There’s always been an element of Mafioso in our authors books, and this time is no exception.

We’re introduced to Violetta, our leading lady when she’s first just a child in her uncle’s home. We know that she’s living with her uncle and aunt because her parents were killed years ago back in Italy and now she’s in America being taken care of by family. She notes an older sister Rosetta but we learn that she passed as well. This first time that we meet our heroine of sorts, it’s when she sneaks a look at a man who’s come to visit her uncle, a man that exudes power and darkness and yet at the same time he’s got such beauty that his soul does something to hers.

Fast forward several years and we’re back with Violetta, when she’s in nursing school, trying to make a future for herself in the American world while trying to stay true to her roots in the Italian world. She’s following all the rules that her family dictates for her and at the same time, she envisions what her future can look like when she’s done with school. She has an amazing summer vacation to Malta to look forward to until that’s ripped out from under her feet.

Enter Santino – Re Santino – King Santino. A Mafia boss, leader…all around intimidating guy. And ironically the same man that Violetta was captured with all those years before. She walks into her uncles home one day to see Santino standing over her uncle and he’s sobbing uncontrollably. Fast forward a few days and Re Santino is back at the house for dinner – with all the family there as well, and we learn that there’s an ultimate reason.

Violetta has been ‘sold off’ to Santino to be his wife. She’s forced against her will, losing everything that she had been working so hard for her entire life to be married to this man who doesn’t know her, who doesn’t know much about her and frankly who she’s not even sure there’s mutual like with.

We watch their relationship go from one of complete opposition, so a slow burn of something better. something more. We see Santino’s patience as he recounts bits of his past and how he introduces Violetta to parts of her past and history. She learns jiust how much of her past is intertwined with Santino and how well he knew her family back in the old country. While he opens her eyes to things that she didn’t know before, she appreciates the honesty and it starts to transform her opinion of what her life is to become.

He treats her like she’s from the old world – dressing her in old clothes that aren’t really right for a 19 year old. He keeps her ‘locked’ up in the house because he knows the evil that’s out to get him. She tries to run from him, hoping for any way to escape which turns out to be a bad move when she’s kidnapped, injured and bares witness to a few murders. She’s sent to stay with one of Santino’s past women who has protection by Santino’s men, and there she slowly starts to learn what it is that she needs to do in order to gain Santino’s interest and keep it.

The story takes a sweet turn from here – all that fear and tension and anxiety transforms. When Violetta makes it clear what she needs, he gives her a vacation to outdo anything that she’s experienced. The go to Italy and she gets toured around the country to all the places that she holds dear. She meets the woman who raised him, and she starts to fall into her role as a hostess and wife. She warms up to him enough to give him a part of herself that no one else has ever had, and then the other shoe drops, literally the next day. His aunt and his ex-best friend’s sister show up and the sister decides to spill more information than Santino would like about Violetta’s sister’s death, and the capacity in which Santino was aware and involved.

So we’re left on the edge of our seat – truly feeling back for her because she’s given her soul to this man, and now trust has been broken, there’s so much misinformation out there that I don’t even know that the truth will save them. Add to that the notion that someone is also out to kill the king – Santino knows that he;s being hunted, yet he’s not sure by whom. I”ve got my suspicions that it’s his ex-best friend Dami, but i’m sure we’ll find out how that plays out in the next book. So now I have to wait 2 months until it’s out – but i’m excited to see where this story goes. Enjoy!

Review: The Act (The Charade #2) by Stella Gray

Title:The Act
Author:  Stella Gray
Publisher/Year:  Stella Gray 4/13/21
Length:  300 Pages
Series: The Charade #2

Overview

It was always going to end in heartbreak.

You can’t pretend-marry the man you secretly love and escape unscathed.

Ford has never hesitated to ask for my help before, but this is the farthest he’s asked me to go. Not that I ever say no to him.

Even when I know I should.

Sleeping with my husband is the best worst idea possible.

It’s everything I dreamed it would be.

But everything to me is nothing to him.

And he’s not the only one I’ve made promises to.

My Thoughts

This story was never meant to be easy, and as we enter into this second installment, we see that easy is not something that’s even in the back of our minds. When we left the first book, we saw the ultimatum/deal that Ford’s parents put in front of Emzee and she had no choice but to take it. While her own personal feelings, stemming back years and years were leading her down one path, she had no choice but to accept the offer of Ford’s family bailing her own family out, at the compromise of walking away from Ford. Just when she thought there was something real between them.

We’ll remember that there was an unbalanced relationship between these two – Emzee was in love with Ford yet he wasn’t there really. He was always using Em as a fall back and as a safety net of sorts. It’s only when this charade takes hold that he sees her as something more. He came to the realization that he loved her, and just at that point, Emzee had to break his heart.

So the journey that we go on in book two is watching the wedding take place – knowing that emotions became even more complicated. We see them go on a honeymoon in this awkward phase of their relationship where they don’t know how to act with each other anymore. We see them come back to the real world, and watch how Ford won’t allow any concessions to Em in his home and his life. While they have a routine, it’s still clear to Em that she’ll never fit in. His parents make it clear that they wish Ford was still with his ex and his Ex still feels as though she’s the woman for him.

There’s a lot of mis-trust in this story. We watch the insecurities that Em has in herself and her relationship come to fruition when Ford continues to flirt and entertain the advances of Claudia. Refusing to remove things that she put in his apartment in exchange for Em being ale to make her own personal touches. We watch as Ford gets jealous when Em entertains a job prospect by a man who clearly finds her attractive and uses that against her. So you can only imagine that part of this is to amp up the hate sex, but part of it is a power dynamic that no one is willing to allow to shift.

So much continues to be an obstacle for our characters. Em’s family still has to deal with the Russian Mafia and her siblings are all trying to plan for what’s next knowing that they’ll lose the business. They all have game plans and worry that Em won’t have them. That she’l have to rely on Ford but they dont’ realize that the relationship with Ford has an expiration date, so she’s really left playing the part of secure when she’s anything but.

The roller coaster continues – and we watch how there’s an understanding that Ford and Em come to in their relationship. Despite all the forces against them, they admit that they share the same feelings for one another and that they will make things work. It’s no surprise that just as things start to fall into place, something comes up that makes them veer off path. That something is information that Claudia shares that causes Emzee’s world to implode. We’re left at a point where there’s really no coming back from the information and whatever was possible for them is now irrevocably lost. This also means that perhaps the deal that Ford’s parents forced Em into is the best solution for everyone since there’s nothing good that can come to them in the future. I don’t know about anyone else, but these twists and turns lead to such intense dynamic shifts, exciting highs and lows, and great passion. So…..I guess i’ll have to wait for book three some how – and I don’t think i’ll be that patient! Enjoy!

Review: Tied to Him (The Billionaire’s Beck and Call #3) by Delilah Fawkes

Title:Tied To Him
Author:  Delilah Fawkes
Publisher/Year:  Delilah Fawkes 7/13/13
Length:  206 Pages
Series: Billionaire’s Beck and Call #3

Overview

Jackson Pierce is a man with a secret…

Becoming Governor isn’t in the cards for billionaire and former D.A. Jackson Pierce unless he can squelch the unsavory rumors flying around. He’s not ashamed of his bad boy past being a dominant at a BDSM club, but he knows the revelation could ruin his political career before it even begins.

He’s skeptical of his campaign advisor’s idea–find a do-gooder wife to give him a more respectable image–until he meets Rose Turner, a former foster kid working in a local community center. Compassionate, feisty and passionate about helping troubled youth, she’s perfect for his needs. But as they get to know one another, his feelings for her grow all too real.

Rose Turner can’t take another heartbreak, not after being abandoned by everyone she ever loved. When she accepts Jackson’s proposal, she vows to keep her distance, but the more she gets to know him, the more she wants to let him in. But trust doesn’t come easy–if he wants it, he’ll have to earn it.

As the two draw closer, threats roll in: if Jackson doesn’t flip on education reform, a blackmailer will expose the fake marriage, ruining his career and tarnishing Rose’s reputation. But if he gives in, funding for the community center will be cut, and Rose’s kids will lose it all. With everything on the line, he must make an impossible decision as the clock runs down.

What’s a man of principle to do when everything he believes in falls apart?

My Thoughts

It’s nice to see how this series progresses, and it’s even better to see Max’s older brother Jackson coming into his own here. We learned in the last installment that there was a bit of a divide with the brothers from growing up, with Max assuming that Jackson took a role in the family outside the business out of spite, but it’s nice to see that it was instead a desire to follow his own passions. We knew of his political aspirations, so it’s great to see that at the forefront of this third book.

At the onset of this book, we learn that Jackson ha the same kinky tastes as Max and Chase, but that he’s chosen to put those in the past for the most part as he’s on his quest to be Governor. The issue that he’s facing now is that he’s learned through his campaign advisor that a woman that he ‘played with’ in the past as a BDSM club is now claiming that it was something more sordid than all that, and it’s going to compromise his campaign. What they decide is that he needs a bride who’s on the up and up to offset those rumors when they come out.

Enter our leading lady Rose – a woman who volunteers with homeless children, making them dinner each week because she knows first hand that sometimes the meals they get at school or the shelter are the only meals they get. She has been through the foster system herself and knows what it’s like to have few options and to finally find someone who cares for her in the way a child needs it.

When Jacks sees her in action, he realizes that she’s perfect for what his advisor thinks he needs, and now he has to convince Rose that she can take the offer of a lifetime – $5Million dollars for a year of her time and a marriage.

The journey that our story goes on from here is a sweet one. We see that she’s willing to ‘sell herself’ because she knows what she can provide for all those kids. She’s willing to set aside part of herself also because Jackson is attractive, powerful and he seems genuine. All the platforms that he talks about in his speeches align to what she wants to do to improve the quality of life for the kids she sees every day and that alone is enough to buy her time.

Jackson wakes up something inside Rose that’s intense. He treats her the way that she deserves and yet she struggles to accept it. They go on dates that mean something to her and they spend time that brings deeper parts of themselves out in the most genuine and sweet ways. All while teasing out the passion and chemistry that they have on such a dominant and powerful way. When they learn at their wedding that someone wants to out their secret behind the relationship and the wedding, we see the story take a turn for the worse.

Jackson enlists the help of Max and Chase and their wives to try to suss out who’s behind the blackmailing. Rose and Jackson go on their honeymoon and try to enjoy what their relationship has turned into, something that actually feels real to both of them, but there’s the undertone that everything will crumble. The threat from the blackmailer is that Jackson needs to change his campaign promises and give up a lot of what Rose believes in him in order to keep the lies quiet.

I’m sure that all the readers know who the blackmailer is, but in the story, the characters can’t quite sniff it out. They search in the office of the opposing candidate and come up empty. They sniff out Jacks’ office and come up empty. They have no idea who is behind it all, yet the threats keep on coming.

When Jackson realizes that he’ll have to do what the blackmailer wants in order to protect Rose as he’s realized and admitted to himself that he loves her, his plan backfires. She loses respect for how quickly he walks away from his beliefs…..and we see the story take a sad turn.

It’s a race to find out who’s behind the threats, while Jackson also has to figure out how to win Rose back. How to remind her that he’s a man worthy of her respect and her trust.

Similar to how all the other stories played out in this series, we see dynamic highs and lows, we see anxiety and we see romance. Tears, love, and heat….all wrapped up nicely in a bow. I’m sad that there are no other characters to take on this journey, but at least we got three books out of it. Enjoy!

Review: Bound To Him (The Billionaire’s Beck and Call #2) by Delilah Fawkes

Title:Bound To Him
Author:  Delilah Fawkes
Publisher/Year:  Delilah Fawkes 7/13/13
Length:  206 Pages
Series: Billionaire’s Beck and Call #2

Overview

Sometimes you have to make a deal with the devil…

Isabeau is happier than ever, loving and living with Chase Drake, her husband and dominant master. But when her younger sister, Lucy, shows up at her doorstep, she knows trouble is on the horizon.

Their brother Alex is in deep again with a bad crowd, but this time, Lucy doesn’t have the money to bail him out. Alex’s life is on the line if he doesn’t pay soon, but since he’s in jail, it’s up to the sisters to come to his rescue.

When Chase Drake’s old friend and fellow dom, Maxwell Pierce, comes to visit, he is instantly enchanted by the beautiful, fiery Lucy Willcox. When he overhears her confessing to Isabeau that she needs money in a hurry, he offers her a job on the spot, as his personal assistant.

He’d come to Chase for a recommendation, because his personal assistants have duties that are… quite unusual. If Lucy takes the job, she’ll be at his beck and call, 24/7, bound to him, and all that the job requires. But with her brother’s life in jeopardy, threatened by a dangerous mobster, she’s desperate enough to sign his contract, no matter what the small print says.

What Lucy doesn’t expect is that she’ll enjoy it… and that saving her brother may mean putting everything on the line, including her heart. 

My Thoughts

Well, we got an interesting start to this series. watching Isa and Chase begin an unconventional relationship both in the office and out. When their relationship ends in the first book at a proposal, it’s lovely to see that they may get their happily ever after. Little does Isa know, her past and family are going to come around and rise up in her life in an unexpected way, and the journey that we watch unfold is a bit similar to book 1, yet with a far darker twist.

It’s on the night of a small dinner get together when a friend of Chase’s comes over – Max – an equally handsome and sexy powerful man, yet one who’s unattached at the moment as he shares similar interests that Chase does. When the door bell rings and the expectation is that it’s Max a tad early for dinner, we’re surprised to see Lucy, Isa’s younger sister coming in hysterics. The reason we learn is that their brother has gotten himself into trouble that even Lucy can’t fix. Ever since Isa moved out to take care of their grandmother, Lucy has been trying to keep their brother out of trouble, or clean up his messes when he gets into trouble often, but this time he’s gone too far.

We watch how Lucy is in a fragile moment, Isa comes in and tries to ease her misery. We watch how Chase wants to protect his new family, and how there’s an instant connection between Lucy and Max. She doesn’t know what he has to offer, but they both feel a spark when they first look at each other. Lucy’s looking for a job to help pay off their brother’s debts, and instead of just Chase jumping to find a solve, Max offers a reprieve, however unconventional it may be.

The path this story takes us down is quite expected from this point forward. We have an innocent who knows nothing of bondage and doms, but she knows sexual attraction and is willing to do what she needs in order to save her brother. The consequences of this agreement, Lucy agreeing to be Max’s assistant means that he’s going to show her the world, tangibly, physically, emotionally. And that’s what she needs even if she doesn’t realize it yet.

When it seems like things are going well and that Lucy will be able to dig them out of the hole that Alex has gotten them into, tragedy strikes and Alex is beaten to an inch of his life in prison. All because the man that he conned felt that he was due more money and retribution faster than anyone could provide it.

Lucy jumps to work on a solution, and Max is by her side the entire time. They confront the powerful man and his gang that have traumatized Alex, and confront him with a payoff or a trade to get Alex’s safety. Of course, Isa and Chase are not far behind and they devise a plan of their own, without cluing in Lucy and that means we’re about to experience fireworks in a bad way.

Drag races, Gang beatings, cons, death on the horizon, and perhaps some FBI like objects all come to a head when we get to the peak of where this story goes. There’s no lack of excitement here, but there’s also a point when we realize that passions are higher as well than had previously been expected. How this story ends isn’t uncommon or surprising, but elements of the story make for a quick and exciting read. I’m really intrigued where a book three can go, given that this one seemed to tie up a bunch of loose ends, even from book one. So, that means that I have to jump into the next one and see where we go. Maybe there’s someone that we’ve yet to meet that needs to experience a bit of sexy control. Enjoy!