51 Followers
45 Following
FVJen

FVJen

Currently reading

Change of Heart
Mary Calmes
Trusted Bond
Mary Calmes
Archangel's Legion
Nalini Singh
Capture & Surrender - L.A. Witt, Aleksandr Voinov Brandon (Stefan) and Frank

So different than the first four books in this series. I wasn't expecting that difference or the heavy emotional tone. The authors handle a difficult subject well.

These two authors are rock stars together. More, please?
Black Heart (Cursed Hearts, #1) - R.L. Mathewson Marty and

I liked this one up until about halfway through and then it went off the rails. Not sure what happened. Weird stuff.
Power Play: Awakening - Rachel Haimowitz, Cat Grant Brandon and Jonathan

Ok, this one was so much more than the first book. In Resistance my eyeballs about rolled out of my head. I might have contemplated 17 different ways to kick Jonathan in the junk and beat Brandon's head up against the wall.

Awakening gave me a sense of peace that Resistance didn't. Brandon was calm and centered and Jonathan actually listened to him. They found a balance that worked for both of them even if, as a reader, I could never understand that balance. Kudos to the authors who made ME fall in line with Jonathan after being so against him for hundreds of pages. He was so convincing that I actually believed he only had Brandon's best interests at heart.

I wish the epilogue had been longer, more detailed or maybe we were getting a third book with this couple. I felt a little cheated by the end. Crazy how I wanted more after all that time.
Afterburn - Sylvia Day Jax and Gia

Stupid cliffhangers. Grumble, grumble, grumble. I love Day's alpha heroes and I love Gia calling Jax on how he feels. Now to wait for the next one....
More Than Make-Believe - Tymber Dalton Travis and Gary
2.5 stars

I was really enjoying this one until something happened towards the end that made my stomach turn. I was kind of sad and very put off. Wish it hadn't gone that way.
Cake - Lauren Dane Gregori and Wren

Where can I find me a Gregori? Yum. Full review to come on Fiction Vixen Book Reviews
Biting Bad - Chloe Neill Ethan and Merit

Lots of conflict but finally it wasn't between Ethan and Merit. I needed this book. Full review to come on Fiction Vixen Book Reviews
Uncommon Passion - Anne Calhoun Rachel and Ben

Um, wow? My favorite Anne Calhoun yet. So freaking good. I adored both characters especially Rachel. Full review on Fiction Vixen Book Reviews

Rachel Hill was raised in a fundamentalist religious community and one day finally found the courage to break out. She was tired of being told who she was supposed to be, what she was supposed to do and that her thoughts and ideas were not good enough to be anything worth listening to. While living in the community she worked on a family farm so she has skills she used to get a job in the outside world.

When the farm holds a bachelor auction to raise money for equipment Rachel bids on Ben Harris. He is just the type of man to take her virginity and not know the difference, or at least that is what she is gambling on. He is the love ‘em and leave ‘em type so Rachel hopes that one more woman in his bed won’t make a blip on his radar.

She is half right when Ben is too tired and drunk to realize what is going on when he takes her virginity. Unfortunately, the next morning the evidence is glaringly obvious and Ben confronts Rachel. He wants to know why and he wants another chance to make it better for her. Rachel is desperate to try new things and learn new sensations so she takes him up on the offer. Ben is able to make the next time something even better for her but strangely he finds himself wanting more. He rationalizes that he should be the one to teach her the ins and outs of casual sex, because that is all it will be. Casual.

“Rachel.”

She turned to look at him over her shoulder. The interior light cast his square jaw and forehead in planes and shadows. “You’re going to confuse it with love. It’s not. It’s sex.”

“Actually, I don’t think I will,” she said. “I know what love feels like. That wasn’t love.”

Rachel and Ben have a standing date once a week where the meet and do things Rachel never even dreamed of doing. The encounters become more and more heated and emotional and Ben starts to pull away. He has nothing for someone else. He works and casually fucks. That is all he does. He needs to figure out a way to cut this relationship off as soon as possible, even if it isn’t what he really wants to do.

Uncommon Passion has some outstanding characters. Rachel is one of the best heroines I have come across. She has inner strength and will that come across the pages so clearly and brilliantly. She had the courage to leave her home and father all because she wanted something else for herself. It might take her a while to work up to submitting paperwork for vet school but eventually she does it. She is not afraid to put herself out there, to put herself in uncomfortable places and positions just to learn what it is she really wants. And most of all, when Ben starts to demean what they have in an attempt to run her off, she is not afraid to tell him and then walk away. There is one particular scene where my heart was breaking for her but she is so strong in the face of what is being thrown at her.

Ben is complicated, broken and so lost. He has issues that stem from his father kicking his gay twin brother out of the house at a young age. His brother was his other half and when he brother was lost, so was he. His brother is back and now happy but that doesn’t change the anger and confusion Ben feels about what happened so many years ago. He has no room for anyone else because he hasn’t figured out how to forgive. So when Rachel comes along making him feel things he just can’t do he pushes her away just like everyone else.

The last 10% of Uncommon Passion is so incredibly sweet. We see a side of Ben that we knew was there but was always hiding under his hurt exterior. Rachel has moved on from the farm and has settled somewhere good for her. And the relationship they form is lovely and a wonderful contradiction to what we saw the rest of the book. The first portion of the book showed us their passion for each other, this last part showed us their love.

I really enjoyed this book. It easily jumped to be my favorite Anne Calhoun book which saying a lot because there is always Liberating Lacey. Uncommon Passion has steamy hot love scenes and scorching emotional conflict that made this book a joy to read. Once I picked it up I didn’t stop until I turned that last page. Final grade- A-

Favorite Quote:

Love. This was the love she never expected to find with a man who wouldn’t care.

If It Flies - Aleksandr Voinov, L.A. Witt Spencer and Nick

Boy Witt and Voinov can sure write the hell out of a sex scene. I will pick up anything these two write.
Take It Off - L.A. Witt, Aleksandr Voinov Tristan and Jared
Quid Pro Quo - Aleksandr Voinov, L.A. Witt Jared and Tristan

Yowser.
Zane (Alluring Indulgence, #2) - Nicole Edwards V and Zane

I call tease on the m/m. Booooo. Dare I hope that Travis and Gage will be next? With that blonde not around.
Snow-Kissed - Laura Florand Kurt and Kai

Oy, I think I need to go quietly cry in a corner now. Full review to come on Fiction Vixen Book Reviews
Bonds of Hope - Lynda Aicher Quinn and Marcus
3.5 stars

New owners so we have some new Dom's. I didn't like this one as much as the first three but it is still a good glimpse into The Den. Full review to come on Fiction Vixen Book Reviews
The Next Best Thing - Kristan Higgins Lucy and Ethan

I am so bummed I didn't like this book. Lucy was too much for me to take. I couldn't handle her grief or the depressing tone of this whole book. Full review on Fiction Vixen Book Reviews

Lucy was widow at a young age and finally feels like she needs to move on with her life. It has been years but now she wants children and the best way to do that is to find a husband. She aims for someone she won’t love because she couldn’t take loving someone again and losing them.

First she has to call off her friends with benefits relationship with Ethan. Ethan is her dead husband’s brother and somehow they just fell into a sexual relationship. Two years later they are still at it. Ethan is good to and for her but Lucy is terrified that he just might inspire too many feelings in her. She can’t afford that so she must let him go. Of course, that is not what happens because Ethan convinces her to give them a shot.

I guess my main issue with The Next Best Thing is that I did not believe in the romance between Ethan and Lucy because of the shadow of Jimmy, the dead husband. Below is how the book went for me:



21%

Though I know I shouldn’t, I find myself sitting in front of the TV, watching my wedding video once again,

48%

What I want is for Jimmy not to have died, for Ethan to meet someone wonderful and be happily married.

56%

Jimmy would’ve sat down with a notepad and mapped out a plan. Here’s what you should do. he’d say, and he’d outline the next ten steps with utmost enthusiasm. Ethan….Ethan’s not helping.

68%

Ethan nods. “Maybe he doesn’t have to be here all the time.”

He’s asking the impossible. Jimmy is with me all the time. His memory is constantly with me, and I think that will ever change.

78%

She is watching the wedding video again.

Everything about the book was so depressing. Lucy’s sister is insane with her hounding of her husband thinking he is going to die any minute. The Black Widows all bemoan The Love of Their Life dying. Lucy cannot stop talking about Jimmy every other paragraph. How in the world am I supposed to believe in a HEA between Lucy and Ethan when everything in the book screams Lucy not being over Jimmy. They were married for 8 months and it had been 5 and a half years! I know there is no time limit on grief but this was miserable to read.

How or why Ethan was supposed to put up with this I have no idea. When Lucy told him no more friends with benefits and then was upset because he acted in that fashion, I was just mad. She wanted to string him along and date at the same time. She cried , had panic attacks and was all over the place with her emotions. All the way through the book all I could think about was how Lucy needed therapy. She didn’t need a new man she needed help. Ethan was strong, loyal and kind even in face of being always put second by his family and Lucy. Why Lucy I will never know. I didn’t see the appeal.

Despite not liking Lucy, reading Lucy crap on Ethan over and over, watching her date her dead husband’s look-alike, I still had to finish the book. I wanted to find out how/if Ms. Higgins made me believe in their love. I never got to that point but I will say there is a very good epilogue. A good epilogue goes a long way for me and The Next Best Thing has a very sweet one.

This was my first Kristan Higgins book and I am very disappointed. I know her books are well-loved and I thought that would be the case for me too. I am not going to give up on her though. I think I will still try something else by her because I really liked her writing style and the humor she expertly weaves through the story. This one just wasn’t for me. Final grade- D

If It Fornicates - Aleksandr Voinov, L.A. Witt Nick and Spencer

Love the prostitute trope. And I really enjoyed this couple together. I like both books and pov's equally.