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Archive for the ‘C’ Category

Copyright: 2004

Pages: 302 (trade-size paperback edition)

Setting/Type: Contemporary/Straight Erotic Romance

Publisher: Signet

Author Website: www.LuAnnMcLane.com (ermm, the book pages leave a lot to be desired, a link to Amazon simply isn’t enough)

Grade: C

Stories of America’s other favorite pastime… (wink wink, nudge nudge, COUGH) <- this comment was added by yours truly, simply couldn’t resist.

It’s “Sex and the Small Town” in three fun and flirty stories… You’ll find both down-home dreams and big-time passion in Sander’s City. The town’s love affair with baseball sparks some scorching affairs off the field. And the men are fair game…

It’s “Sex and the Small Town” in three fun and flirty stories… You’ll find both down-home dreams and big-time passion in Sander’s City. The town’s love affair with baseball sparks some scorching affairs off the field. And the men are fair game…

In “Hot August Night,” Erin O’Shea is a high school principal with sports on her mind. The school’s lack of a baseball coach coincides with her lack of a man. Luckily, bad-boy former pro Michael Manning is ready and willing to fill both positions.

“Heat Wave” finds Josey Cooper, a recently divorced drama teacher, rounding the bases with Chase Mitchell, the sexy manager of the Sander’s City Flyers who is playing for keeps…

Skin-tight pants are hard to resist – especially when they’re on a starting pitcher. In “Hotshot,” sensible schoolteacher Halley Forrester finds herself loosening up with Reese Taylor, who’s an all-star in more ways than one…

I have finished a book, wouldn’t you believe it – YEAH – and it was for pleasure, not for money. Albeit, the money is fantastic, so I won’t bemoan it *g*. In the end, the pleasure part wasn’t that great, even though the book contained three stories about “America’s other favorite pasttime”. It took me two weeks to arrive at the last page, because – surprise, surprise – the stories were rather underwhelming, and after a chapter I felt my brain cells shrinking back into the farthest part of my thinking organ.

To be fair, I am a picky erotic romance reader, and these days, after years of reading in the genre, it takes more than an average good story. And good, the story is, in a way. We have three heroines that don’t suffer from TSTL (a big plus, IMO), three sexy men, a lot of America’s other favorite pasttime, and ….. plots so thin it made me nearly weep.

I think, I either need a very good plot combined with great characters and/or hot sex scenes (the big ideal), or, if one of those points isn’t perfect, at least one part that is outstanding and extraordinarily convincing. Like i.e. a hot story, with no plot and not overly developed characters, but mind-blowing sex scenes. I have come upon such books once in a while, but they are rare. In case of Hot Night pretty much everything is average, so when the h/h finally jump into bed with each other, it’s just another anticlimax instead of a conclusion to lots of sexual tension.

I would love for erotic romance writers to take more time developing their characters. To see them grow on each other and for me as a reader to consequently feel the buildup of passion and tension between the h/h.

Well, I’ll keep on wishing … that’s surely no sin. I have another book of this author on my TBR pile, perhaps this one will be more convincing.

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Copyright: 2003

Pages: 320 (paperback edition)

Setting/Type: Americana/Straight Romance

Publisher: St. Martin’s

Series:Grayson Brothers #2

Grade: C

When Kyle Grayson accused his competitor Tom Drake of treachery, he never imagined the man would die in his arms. Wracked with guilt, Kyle marries Tom’s daughter Amelia and vows to resurrect her father’s lumberyard. Though hard and cynical when it comes to love, he is all too aware of his desire for his beautiful wife-sensing her secret longing for his touch, her fear of his passion…and the unspoken secrets weighing down on their marriage.

I wouldn’t have finished this book, hadn’t I been sitting in a train without anything else to read. Nothing’s worse than not having anything to read on a long train ride, that’s why I stumbled through this story about Kyle and Amelia.

I put The Longing on my wishlist thanks to a review over at AAR and its (nowadays) unusual setting. I have a weakness for Americanas, so I am always eager to find out about new authors in this genre and hidden treasures.

To be fair, I do understand what makes this book so special to some readers. Wendy Lindstrom possesses a fine craftsmanship and ability to create characters and describe their lives. For me, it probably was an “it’s not you, it’s me” book.

From the beginning, Amelia, the heroine is put into a situation that makes her utterly dislikable to me, even though I DO (kind of) understand her acting and reasoning. Amelia is a school teacher and restricted to the severest rules of deportment. When Kyle calls on her to tell her about her father’s death, they are discovered and Amelia consequently tricks Kyle into marrying her by telling their “unwanted” visitors about his supposed proposal. Amelia has been ruined in the past and the only future she envisions for herself is a restricted life as school teacher. She desperately wants to marry and be a wife, and, in a way, Kyle’s visit seems to be her last chance.

Since his father’s death Kyle has been responsible for his brothers and mother, and to keep a roof over his beloved ones with a struggling family business. He has denied himself to go to university and now again kind of sacrifices himself in order to protect Amelia. Because he feels guilty and responsible for her father’s death he sooner or later would have offered for Amelia voluntarily, this way, however, the marriage is just another burden to his life.

This is just the description of the very beginning of the story. While it continues, many more facets of guilt come into play and just made me gnashing my teeth.

I know Amelia is in a horrible situation, especially considering a woman’s position in society in the late 1900s. Yet nevertheless, her acting made me dislike her immensely. Kyle was all in all a much more agreeable character, but after a while he got martyrdom qualities and I just couldn’t put up with him anymore.

There’s definitely too much guilt in this story and concerning my reading future I don’t feel very tempted to try Lindstrom’s writing out again.

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