Review: Holding my Breath (Carried Away #2) by AM Hartnett


Title: Holding my Breath
Author: AM Hartnett
Publisher/Year: HaperCollins Publishing 8/28/14
Length: 200
Series: Carried Away Series #2


Molly has watched that blue-eyed seducer for months, but now that her hotel is targeting a more family-friendly clientele, he has to go. Quinn wants to bargain: give him until New Year’s Eve, and he’ll make it worth her while.A passionate erotic romance perfect for fans of Sylvia Day. Book 2 in the Carried Away series.“It’s a skill not every man possesses, and it can’t be taught. That’s why I’m good at what I do.”For half his life Quinn has been making his living as a professional Casanova. Challenged by Molly to take his business elsewhere, he strikes a bargain with her: give him until New Year’s Eve and she’ll never see him again, and in the meantime he’ll make it worth her while.As their arrangement becomes a passionate affair, there’s no denying that Molly’s been waiting for him to come into her life for a very long time. She never imagined that a man like Quinn would be the one.

My Thoughts

Where do I begin.  If you guys haven’t noticed, it’s been several days since i posted an actual review of a book, and that’s not my norm.  I find that it usually takes me 2 days to read a book, 3 max depending on my schedule, and it’s been much longer.  That’s kind of telling in my opinion.  What we have here is a 2nd book of a series that I had higher hopes for – not that i loved book 1, but i was kind of hoping that book 2 would be better since that’s been my experience with other authors.  not the case here – i’m sorry to say.

What the story gives us is a tale of 2 character that have their own demons, which they don’t really overcome – just somewhat…in a round about way.

We have our leading female – Molly who is coming out of a marriage that wasn’t quite satisfying to her, especially after the loss of a baby – and she’s in a job that’s not really fulfilling.  She works in a hotel as the front desk manager and the property has been bought from Werner-Tareau (the link to book 1) and is going to go from high end to family friendly.  ick!  Then we have our leading man – Quinn who has a checkered past, being somewhat homeless for a while and really spent a lot of time hanging with the wrong crowd (this is his connection to Simon).  In addition, he’s got an interesting ‘freelance consulting’ business as Molly puts it  in the sense that he’s a male escort.

So, take all this, and we get the basis for a story that could be sordid but doesn’t really ever get there.  Molly confronts Quinn one night about what he does in her hotel and that turns into an interesting night – where there’s some bits of passion, but never really going there.  A connection though sparks between them, in the sense that they decide to see where things can go outside of a paying relationship and for the next hundred or so pages, this is what we get.

What bugs me about this book is that he’s a professional, so i’d assume that the passion and heat that he’d bring to their relationship would be more enthralling and it’s just not.  Personally i foudn myself trying really really hard to get in to the story and I just couldn’t.  I stuck with it for the first few scenes between them, but after about 2/3 of the book, i just had to fast forward to the actual story line since i wasn’t getting the chemistry or connection anymore.

I also kept trying to get more of the link between book 1 and book 2 since it’s supposed to be a series, and there really wasn’t anything that tied things together.  There was an appearance of Simon and the fact that the hotel that Molly worked at was once owned by Jacques – but that’s it, so it felt more like a stand alone book to me.

At the end, we get some resolution from things in each of their lives, but no real finale or culmination of it all.  Not that we need to have big proclamations or anything, it felt like the book just ended – with a reveal from Quinn and baby steps for Molly.  Oh well, can’t have all books be a fave now can we?

Review: The Deep End (Carried Away #1) by AM Hartnett


Title: The Deep End
Author: AM Hartnett
Publisher/Year: HaperCollins Publishing 7/31/14
Length: 200
Series: Carried Away Series #1


No one has seen Jacques Taureau in the flesh since a traumatic attack left him scarred inside and out. But there is a man behind every myth and even stone can become fire again.A passionate erotic romance perfect for fans of Sylvia Day. Book 1 in the Carried Away series.“Mr. Taureau, is there anything I can do for you?”For years, the Taureau-Werner building has been Grace’s playground. Hot men in suits have provided her with one sinful diversion after another without ever having to leave the thirteenth floor.Grace thinks her secret indulgences are safe, until one late night alone in the office, a call comes through from billionaire recluse: Jacques Alain Taureau. And in Taureau’s lonely world, Grace meets a prince with no intention of escaping his secretive retreat by the sea.

My Thoughts

So, i’m not sure what to think of this first installment of the series, especially since what i gather from the synopsis of book 2, there are new characters in the next one.  Anyhow, what we have here is a new take on Beauty and the Beast, with Jacques being the Beast, although he’s the vastly successful CEO and owner of a number of companies.  He was attacked and nearly killed by a drugged ex girlfriend, and since then, he’s kept to himself hidden in his home in the woods in Canada.

Its only after ‘watching’ Grace at work at one of his companies that he’s thought that maybe he’s found his next ‘beauty’.  She’s clearly not unaware of her own sexuality, given that she has a routine for finding her conquests in the office from various men that come through for meetings (she works for the president so she’s got a lot of access), and we see that each of her conquests is just that – nothing more than a toy/plaything and nothing that she wants more from.

It’s one night after a teleconference with Jacques Taureau and Grace is cleaning up the room that he dials back in and flips Grace’s world over.  He’s been watching EVERYTHING that she’s been doing in the office and instead of firing her, they begin their own relationship or sorts, since it’s always via phone or video.  never in person.

We only see the frustration build after this goes on for few weeks, that Grace wants something ‘more’ and that’s not something that Jacques can give.  He does something unexpected and brings her into his world, and that’s where things heat up.

As expected, from here for a majority of the book, we get some great chemistry, and pretty decent scening, but the ‘issue’ that i have with this is that it wasn’t that hot to read.  I don’t know what it was, but while you can clearly see that these 2 are into each other, i didn’t get the same sense of passion and over whelming desire than i usually get.

While we delve deeper into all that they try with one another (they both love their toys), we get to see Grace start to pick more and more at Jacques past in the hopes that she’ll get him to open up since he’s got these major walls down.  In my opinion, it’s a bad idea since it means that she’ll either end up leaving his home, or she’ll get kicked out.  It’s only what we start to get towards the very end that makes you sit up a bit more to read.  The dynamic between the 2 changes quite a bit and the uncertainty for what it means for Grace’s ‘job’ and her personal life perk you up.

So, all in all, average, but i have an ARC of the 2nd book in the series, so perhaps i’ll keep reading and see if maybe the next one refines some of what’s missing and it gets better.