Review: Take Me (The Stark Trilogy #3.5) by J. Kenner

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Title:  Take Me
Author: J Kenner
Publisher/Year: Random House Publishing Group 12/3/13
Length:  90 pages
Series: Stark Trilogy #3.5

Overview

I’ve long dreamed of my fairy tale wedding, but it wasn’t until I met Damien Stark—who captured me with his kisses and undid me with his touch—that I began to believe it was my destiny. Though we both carry secrets and scars, our shared passion heals us, binding us together. We have surrendered to each other completely, and our mutual ecstasy is the brightest light in my life.

But darkness still snakes through the cracks in our armor. Ghosts from our past have moved in, bringing fresh pain that cuts deep and threatens to destroy everything we hold dear.

Damien is my anchor to this world, and I am his. But if we are going to keep each other, we have to fight the shadows of our pasts to move forward into our future.

My Thoughts

Since we saw the conclusion of their story in Book 3 – complete me, i wasn’t really expecting much more out of the tale of Damien and Nikki.  Not that it wouldn’t have been nice to see a bit more into the future, i don’t know that it was necessary.  What we get in this short novella is a slight jump into the future, where we see what’s become of the couple now that things are starting to settle down between them.

The introduction to this story makes you wonder what’s really going on though since it’s quite dramatic, but after you settle into it after a few pages, you see that there’s the expected anxiety that comes with preparing for your wedding, when stress isn’t your friend.  We get a constant reminder through this story of how Nikki used to deal with pain and stress, and that’s something that she’s constantly fighting with.  Damien continues to be her rock, but is that what’s good for her?

Nikki’s mother of course shows up at an inopportune time, when things couldn’t be worse for Nikki – and of course that adds to a few pages of stress.  The question becomes whether Nikki will let her mother run over her or if she’ll find her inner strength and fight.  Of course you can expect what the answer is – but will that be the last we hear of it?  i’m doubting it.

What i really liked though is that our author – Julie Kenner sets things up nicely for a spin-off which i would welcome.  We got to know Jaime quite a bit throughout the Stark trilogy that i think we could see something come of her life.  It sounds like she’s starting to sort things out and realizes that on her own she won’t be strong enough to stay on the right path, but i think that there’s a hint of things to come.  Aside from that, there seems to be a lot of hinting towards relationships with either Evan (one of Damien’s friends that we just met) and Ryan (one of Damien’s security). so, we’ll see what happens 🙂

Enjoy this quick read – nothing too dramatic, but at least it sticks with the heat and passion and protectiveness that we’ve come to love and appreciate.  there’s also a nice little flashback scene in this installment that takes us back to the first night that Nikki and Damien reconnected (at that party not at the pageant).

Review: Touch Me (One Night with Sole Regret #4) by Olivia Cunning

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Title:  Touch Me
Author:  Olivia Cunning
Publisher/Year:  Olivia Cunning 4/19/13
Length:  134 Pages
Series: One Night With Sole Regret #4

Overview

He went there looking for a sure bet…
Sole Regret’s bassist, Owen Mitchell, is convinced that romance is for chumps. He’s only looking for a good time, and when he spots an attractive, older woman emitting men-suck vibes at a brand new sex club, he’s sure he’s found it.

She went there hoping to get over her ex-husband…
Successful business woman, Caitlyn Hanson, is still infuriated and hurt over her ex-husband’s affair with a much younger woman. She’s only looking to scrub his claim from her body by offering it to the first attractive man who shows her interest, and the young, hot stud, who just sat down at her table, will do quite nicely.

They never meant to get personal…
Caitlyn knows she’s not supposed to get attached to Owen just because he gives her body pleasure unlike any she’s ever known, but it’s her first one-night-stand and she can’t seem to keep her heart out of the equation. For once, Owen finds himself in the same conundrum. He likes Caitlyn too much to keep his heart at a safe distance, but will a mistake from Owen’s past drive her away forever?

My Thoughts

The saga continues and in a good way.  This time we get to see into the man known as Tags or Owen to his friends.  Owen has an interesting story that’s made him who he is and it’s a nice one.  He was the fat kid in school – the one that was always teased and that girls made fun of, and now he has the chance to kind of throw it in their face since he’s a smoking hot rock star with a heart of gold.

one thing that Olivia Cunning does really well which she’s done in the first few installments that we see continue here is the great ‘bromance’ pairings between guys in the band.  we saw Jacob/Adam and now we get to see more into what makes Kelly/Owen work.  It’s a nice friendship and i really can’t wait to see where she takes it.  (although i’m worrying a bit like it’s going to be like Brian/Trey from Sinner).  we’ll see

the leading lady that we get to meet here is Caitlyn who’s definitely sending out ‘men suck’ vibes from the recent demise of her marriage when her husband cheated on her and left her for a younger model (ironically very similar to how she landed him in the first place) .

In any event, Caitlyn decided to visit a sex club kind of as an ‘f-you’ to her ex and to make herself feel more sexy and attractive.  she was really just looking for some one night fun but meets Owen and her life is changed.

With the help of Kelly, Caitlyn explores her kinky side w/ Owen and we get to see that she’s not just a geek who’s successful on her own, but that she’s got all these sensual feelings that have been hiding for so long that Owen brings out.  It’s really nice too because we see deeper into Owen and really like him for the kind soul that’s there and how he translates that into how thoroughly he pleasures and consumes a woman.

and trust me, pleasure he does.  over and over and over again.  he shows Caitlyn that whatever she had before with her husband (being the only many she ever slept with) was a negative 5 on the scale of 1-10 especially since Owen knows his way around a woman and is a firm 11.

True to form in this series, we’re left on a high note when things couldn’t be going any better for the blooming couple when a groupie from concerts past show up 6 months preggo, claiming that the baby is Owens.  (or well, just about any of the band members and crew, but wants it to be Owens).  that means that there’s quite the rocky path for Owen/Caitlyn and we’ll have to wait and see what comes of it all.

good news is that i have the next installment waiting for me and i gather it’s Kelly’s story since it’s call Tie Me and his nick name is Cuff.  We also got an introduction to his ‘mad rope tying skills’ so that’ll be nice too.

 

Review: Take Me (One Night with Sole Regret #3) by Olivia Cunning

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Title:  Take Me
Author:  Olivia Cunning
Publisher/Year:  Olivia Cunning 1026/12
Length:  100 Pages
Series: One Night With Sole Regret #3

Overview

She is one woman he should never touch…

Sole Regret’s enigmatic vocalist, Jacob “Shade” Silverton, is a consummate womanizer, but even he knows better than to get involved with one special woman from his past. Mixing friendship and pleasure can only lead to a broken heart, and he’s suffered enough heartache to swear off relationships for a lifetime.

He is one man she has always desired…

Amanda Lange knows all about Shade’s naughty reputation, but that doesn’t stop her from wanting to dive into the gorgeous rock star’s arms and his bed. She convinces herself that one night of passion won’t complicate their friendship, but can she convince him of that?

They’re both playing with fire.

Neither of them realized how far one kiss would take them. As the flames of their passion ignite with the intensity of an inferno, will either of them escape the experience without being burned or will both be branded fool enough to take a chance on a relationship that was marked for ruin before it even began?

My Thoughts

i love how we get these nice short stories that clearly allude to something more coming in future installments.  What’s also nice is that most of these stories only talk through little bits of what the other band mates are doing, and possibly how their stories could intertwine more in the future.

In this installment, we get to see the human side of Shade/Jacob which we haven’t gotten a look at up until now.  What we’ve seen is that he is this cocky guy who speaks his mind, makes no apologies and does what he wants.  in reality there’s so much more to him, and it’s really nice that Olivia Cunning decided to make his story what it was.

In this 3rd book, the band is on a short overnight break from their tour and are all back home for a night.  It just happens to be the night of his daughter’s birthday (yes, that was a nice shock that he has a daughter) and Jacob does what he can to make it to the party, knowing that he’s not going to be received with open arms.  (especially since julie lives his her mom…..the ex-wife that feels completely betrayed by her rocker husband.) As expected, Jacob isn’t even allowed in the house and is only grated about 10 minuets to see his daughter.

I loved that we got this side of him since he’s clearly human, and we even get to understand a bit more about why he’s called Shade – why he chooses to cover his eyse all the time, because they are just way too expressive.

So after Jacob’s 10 minutes are up with his daughter, he’s left to figure out how to get home since he doesn’t know where his car is, and Tina’s little sister Amanda comes to his rescue.  I almost saw this happening from a slightly different angle, but of course they realize that they have chemistry and this is the right time to act on it.  if only it were that easy right?

Amanda was ready to act on it since she’s been lusting after him for ever but Jacob considers her to be off limits.  It’s his own internal battle that lasts for just long enough until all walls fall down and they realize that they are just as hot and steamy for each other and take it out of their own hands.

The scenes that we get with this couple are exciting and intimate.  We get to see that Jacob really is a performer even in the privacy of his own home.  We also see that he is afraid to get hurt again and is almost unwilling to do it, but with Amanda, there’s a potential that if family things don’t get in the way, it’s ideal.  They have chemistry, they share similar ideals, and a sense of humor..

the question that we’re left with at the end of this story – is this just a one night stand or is there a chance for more?  i think that was a nice little ending since you know that all hell will break loose if anyone finds out that Amanda has betrayed her sister in this way.