The Training (Submissive #3) by Tara Sue Me

Book Description:

Published: October 1, 2013

Format: Free Digital Book

It started with a hidden desire.

Millionaire CEO Nathaniel West has always played by his own strict set of rules, ones he expects everyone to follow—especially the women he’s dominated in his bedroom. But his newest lover is breaking down all his boundaries and rewriting his rule book.

Abby King never imagined that she would capture the heart of Nathaniel West, one of New York City’s most eligible bachelors—and its most desirable dominant. What began as a weekend arrangement of pleasure has become a passionate romance with a man who knows every inch of her body and her soul – yet remains an enigmatic lover. Though he is tender and caring, his painful past remains a wall between them.

Abby knows the only way to truly earn his trust is to submit to him fully and let go of all of her lingering inhibitions. Because to lead Nathaniel on a path to greater intimacy, she must first let him deeper into her world than anyone has ever gone before…

Review –

The Training picks up on the heels of The Dominant. Abby and Nathaniel have rekindled their relationship, both agreeing to balance a life of a Dominant and submissive on the weekends, and that of a typical couple throughout the week. Nathaniel is tentative on this new plan…can he be both a Dominant and a lover to the same person? Can Abby turn off her submissive tendencies during the week and be the feisty, free-spirited woman he loves? This will take some time…..some Training.

It is Abby’s training and  shaping to be a submissive. It’s like a tutorial on how things are done in the playroom and gives us a glimpse on the BDSM world. Written under dual POV, I liked seeing both their perspectives.

As their weekends are HOT and sexy and sensual and limits are pushed even further, they agree that one thing they have to work on – communication. As their first round of being together was constricted around a lot of secrets and misinformation, Nathaniel makes it a big point that they talk openly and freely about limits and likes and dislikes and what to expect over all.

A visit at Nathaniel’s mentor Paul and his wife Christine, who’s also his submissive, opens Abby’s eyes even more to the dynamics, the power, the beauty and the love between a Dom and his sub. It leads to a more intense and stronger bond between Nathaniel and Abby.
It also leads to a very interesting play party that doesn’t end as expected.

I think this book rides a fine line of loving Nathaniel, the rich, successful, sweet, caring man to not hating him as the arrogant, controlling Dom. The book doesn’t sugar coat the BDSM D/s lifestyle into something we as readers want out of a story. I think that his playroom attitude will push some people’s buttons….he’s still got the spare bedroom for her, still expects her to serve him meals, and adds more submissive requirements that made me scowl at the book.  He made her do WHAT? 

Abigail’s submissive side NEEDS her Master. It’s as much a part of her as it is him. But she also craves her lover Nathaniel….

But can Nathaniel completely conquer his fear of being both a lover and a Dom to Abigail?

The story shows how real life D/s-relationship work and struggle and how beautiful they can be. It shows how much work it is and that there isn’t an only way living this life! 

The book is complete with an epilogue and we  get our happily ever after hearts and flowers.

Hot, steamy read.

 

The Submissive (Submissive #1) by Tara Sue Me

Book Description:

Published: February 7, 2013

Format: Free Digital Book

Abby King has a secret fantasy.

New York knows Nathaniel West as the brilliant and handsome CEO of West Industries, but Abby knows he’s more: a sexy and skilled dominant who is looking for a new submissive. Yearning to experience a world of pleasure beyond her simple life as a librarian, Abby offers herself to Nathaniel, to fulfill her most hidden desires.

After only one weekend with the Master, Abby knows she needs more, and fully submits to Nathaniel’s terms. But despite the pleasure he takes in Abby’s willing spirit, the Nathaniel hidden behind the rules remains cold and distant.

As Abby falls deeper into his tantalizing world of power and passion, she fears that Nathaniel’s heart may be beyond her reach—and that her own might be beyond saving…

Review –

Abby has had a “thing” for Nathaniel West  since he had a hand in helping save her Mother’s house. The problem is that she has no experience being a sub and Nathaniel doesn’t train submissives but he decides to make an exception in her case.

Since the story is told first person, only from Abby’s perspective, I found Nathaniel pretty unlikeable, given that it seemed Abby was the only one feeling anything. But as the story unfolded, and Abby meets others in Nathaniel’s life, and we the reader get to know him, it becomes easier to understand why she would fall for him.

Nathaniel is definitely a wounded soul, and his defense mechanisms make him distant. As we learn more about his history, I found myself softening towards him. And when he and Abby have their big fight, man does he give good grovel. The sex scenes are very spicy, although the BDSM element is pretty tame.

I also read the second in the series, The Dominant, and it is the same story told from Nathaniel’s POV. We learn more about his history and why he is the way he is and if you’re wondering why there is a piano on the cover, well, you’ll just to read the book and find out.

I you like the Dominant/Submissive genre then you HAVE to check out this series. You will not be disappointed .

If I Run (If I Run #1) by Terri Blackstock

Book Description:

Published:

Format: Audio/Audible

 

Casey knows the truth.

But it won’t set her free.

Casey Cox’s DNA is all over the crime scene. There’s no use talking to police; they have failed her abysmally before. She has to flee before she’s arrested . . . or worse. The truth doesn’t matter anymore.

But what is the truth? That’s the question haunting Dylan Roberts, the war-weary veteran hired to find Casey. PTSD has marked him damaged goods, but bringing Casey back can redeem him. Though the crime scene seems to tell the whole story, details of the murder aren’t adding up. Casey Cox doesn’t fit the profile of a killer. But are Dylan’s skewed perceptions keeping him from being objective? If she isn’t guilty, why did she run?

Unraveling her past and the evidence that condemns her will take more time than he has, but as Dylan’s damaged soul intersects with hers, he is faced with two choices. The girl who occupies his every thought is a psychopathic killer . . . or a selfless hero. And the truth could be the most deadly weapon yet.

Review –

After finding best friend Brent Pace stabbed to death in his apartment, Casey Cox knows she will be the prime suspect and needs to make a decision quickly. Armed with thousands in cash that her father gave her for emergencies, she hops on a bus out of Shreveport, Louisiana, and becomes Grace Newland after purchasing the identity illegally.

Back in Shreveport, war-weary vet Dylan Roberts attends Brent’s funeral and is hired by a family friend in the police department to bring Casey home for questioning. As Dylan tries to determine Casey’s motive for murdering her friend, “Grace” is trying to establish a new life in Shady Grove, Georgia, thanks to Miss Lucy, an elderly woman she met on the bus. Sleuthing online from afar, Casey uncovers evidence that Brent had information pertaining to her father’s murder. Unsure who to trust as evidence begins to point to corrupt detectives, Casey digs into her family past to figure out what really happened to her father a decade before.

Dylan, just a few steps behind Casey, is skeptical of her involvement in Brent’s death. Will her questioning end up costing Casey her life, or will Dylan track her down in time to save them both? The author  is masterly in navigating the suspenseful fugitive plot, using the alternation of Casey’s and Dylan’s chapters to ratchet up the tension. Crisp dialogue and unexpected twists make this compulsive reading, and a final chapter cliffhanger leaves things poised for a sequel. 

I really enjoyed this story but the cliffhanger was a surprise because I didn’t know about the sequel. I plan on reading or listening to it as soon as I can find it.

If You Want Me (The Magister Series #1) by July Hall

Book Description:

Published: November 12, 2016

Format: Free Digital Book

When you make the rules, you don’t need to break them.

That’s me: the one who makes the rules. I’m not a good man…I’m a hard one.

Anyone who gets in my way finds out what it means to defy Charles Magister. Ruthless in the boardroom, keeping an iron grip on everything around me—that’s the only way I know how to live. I get what I want, and since my wife died, absolute power is the only thing I’ve wanted.

Until I saw Sandra Dane. Since the moment I first looked into her blue eyes, watched her beautiful mouth, I’ve wanted something more than power. Now I want her. She’s beautiful. Luscious. Enticing. She sets me on fire, and I want to show her what it means to burn.

But she’s forbidden fruit. She’s too young for me, too innocent, and for God’s sake, she’s dating my nephew. Even I have my limits. Don’t I?

Who am I kidding? I’ve taken what I’ve wanted ever since I took Magister Enterprises away from my own father and made billions with it. I have no limits.

I want Sandra. And I’ll have her, no matter how wrong it is.

After all…I make the rules.

I’ll show the good girl what it’s like to be possessed by a hard man.

Review –

The book didn’t really hook me right of the bat,  but once I got a few chapters in I found that I couldn’t stop reading it. And I love that in addition to the romance between forty something Charles and twenty something Sandra, and the drama that are to be expected, there are some genuinely funny and  embarrassing moments.

The entire storyline is very plausible and never veers off into a situation that would have me rolling my eyes.

While I enjoyed reading this, the first in the series, I don’t know if I want to spend money for the other three because I know that Charles will get Sandra, Charles will lose Sandra and Charles will get Sandra back. That’s always the way it goes.

Very enjoyable read.

Breakdown (Alex Delaware #31) by Jonathan Kellerman

Book Description:

Published: February 2, 2016

Format: Audio/OverDrive

Psychologist sleuth Alex Delaware is surprised to get the call when well-known TV actress Zelda Chase turns up half-naked, half-mad in the LA’s rural Westside. He has little connection to the starlet, save a psychiatric evaluation he performed on her adopted son several years ago, a child who has since vanished without a trace and whom Zelda refuses to talk about. When the actress turns up dead a few weeks later without a scratch on her, Delaware calls in police lieutenant Milo Sturgis to help him crack the case—or at least the wall of silence surrounding it. When the body of a second actress turns up with the same mysterious cause of death, Delaware and Sturgis start to wonder—is this a copycat case or a coincidence? When they uncover the death of another actress, a star from another era who vanished decades ago, never to be found, they realize they’re facing one of their most baffling, mind-bending cases yet.

Review –

Kellerman offers up a slightly different Alex Delaware in this outing, a slightly obsessed one  and the plot – thankfully – kept me guessing. I say  – thankfully – because the last few have been a bit predictable.

This storyline  is mostly an interesting one, although a tad convoluted . But the author also introduces a few threads, which all tie up in a fairly surprising way at the end; but I was kept guessing and keen to understand Zelda’s fate so was pulled into the unfolding story.

I’m hoping Kellerman keeps throwing a few curve balls at his lead characters as this was an improvement on its predecessor and a very  enjoyable read/listen.

Embracing My Submission (The Dom’s of Genesis #1) by Jenna Jacob

Book Description:

Published: October 28, 2012

Format: Free Digital Book

Haunted for years by dreams of a savage, amber eyed Dominant with lips so enticing my soul ached in frustration and lust. None of the Dominants at Genesis, my local BDSM club ever stirred me in such blistering ways. While I tried to fill my submissive desires vicariously through interactions at the club, I attempted to convince myself it was enough. But it wasn’t. My dream Dom made certain I hungered for more. Forced beyond what I could bear, my passion and frustration exploded. I threw in the towel, determined to stop chasing a dream and gave up completely on finding submissive surrender. But fate intervened when two gunshots split the night. Forced to confront my desires and insecurities, I was shocked to realize that my dreams may have held a deeper meaning. Were they compelling me to finally embrace my submission?

Review –

The book is entirely written from the heroine’s perspective. 

Julianna was a submissive without a Dom, something that haunted her because she wanted nothing more but to find a good Dom who would claim her as his own. She had a past bad experience, which did not manage to turn her away from the lifestyle, and now she was under the protection of a Dom from a BDSM club she was a member of who was her mentor.

She has had dreams of a man who is meant to be her Dom and all of the dream sequences got on my nerves, I’m sorry, but I loved everything else about the story line.

Julianna and Mika were meant to be, but them getting to the point where they could finally accept that wasn’t exactly easy — Mika was grieving, and Julianna was stubborn, and had decided to give up submission — but I loved every step in their journey. It was emotional, it was hot, it was even fun.

There are other books in the series but I don’t think I’ll read them simply because the blurbs didn’t grab me.

This book however, was HOT!

 

A Cold Heart (Alex Delaware #17) by Jonathan Kellerman

Book Description:

Published: December 30, 2003

Format: Audio/OverDrive

LAPD homicide detective Milo Sturgis summons his friend, psychologist-sleuth Alex Delaware, to a trendy gallery where a promising young artist has been brutally garroted on the night of her first major showing. The details of the murder scene immediately suggest to Alex not an impulsive crime of passion, but the meticulous and taunting modus operandi of a serial killer.

Delaware’s suspicions are borne out when he and Milo find there’s a link between the artist’s death and the murder of a noted blues guitarist. The twisting trail leads from halfway houses to palatial mansions, and from a college campus to the last place Alex ever expected: the doorstep of his ex-lover Robin Castagna. As more killings are discovered, unraveling the maddening puzzle assumes a chilling new importance — stopping a vicious psychopath who’s made cold-blood murder his chosen art form.

Review –

I’m finding more and more of this series, Alex Delaware, that I haven’t read or listened to but I was disappointed with this one.

It’s a bit on the boring side and predictable to boot. The identity of the killer is a little too easy to guess and the action packed ending a tad too obvious. All in all, not the authors’ best work.

 

 

Love Restored (Gallagher Brothers #1) by Carrie Ann Ryan

Book Description:

Published: September 13, 2016

Format: Audio/OverDrive

In the first of a Montgomery Ink spin-off series from NYT Bestselling Author Carrie Ann Ryan, a broken man uncovers the truth of what it means to take a second chance with the most unexpected woman…

Graham Gallagher has seen it all. And when tragedy struck, lost it all. He’s been the backbone of his brothers, the one they all rely on in their lives and business. And when it comes to falling in love and creating a life, he knows what it’s like to have it all and watch it crumble. He’s done with looking for another person to warm his bed, but apparently he didn’t learn his lesson because the new piercer at Montgomery Ink tempts him like no other.

Blake Brennen may have been born a trust fund baby, but she’s created a whole new life for herself in the world of ink, piercings, and freedom. Only the ties she’d thought she’d cut long ago aren’t as severed as she’d believed. When she finds Graham constantly in her path, she knows from first glance that he’s the wrong kind of guy for her. Except that Blake excels at making the wrong choice and Graham might be the ultimate temptation for the bad girl she’d thought long-buried.

Review –

I have read the Montgomery Ink series so I was acquainted with the characters that showed up during this, the first of the Gallagher Brothers  books.

Graham Gallagher and his brothers restore houses that are historical landmarks and other properties and he is a dark, brooding, grumpy man with a long beard, a piercing and ink.

Blake Brennen, who has been estranged from her parents since the birth of her daughter, Rowan, ten years ago, is the executor of her family’s estate so she is the contact person  and she and Graham butt heads from the start.They’re both such strong personalities that they are like magnets bouncing off of each other but you know with just one turn they will connect in such away pulling them apart will be a near impossibility. But Blake has a history that haunts her, a history that changed her world, a history that sent her on the run for years, but now she’s back home and forced to face that history while keeping herself and her secrets close to the heart.

Blake works at Montgomery Ink and pierces as well as tattoos so she comes into contact with the Gallagher brothers almost every day because, Jake Gallagher is engaged to Maya Montgomery.

To make a long story short, Graham and his wife (now ex),Candace, lost a child and their marriage didn’t survive. Blake, got pregnant and the father became a drug addict and died and his parents have always blamed her and said they would have the baby taken away from her, so she moves often and tries to keep Rowan a secret.

Blake, discovers that Chris’s parents have found out where she lives and are taking her to court for full custody.

The Gallagher and the Montgomery’s band together and help Blake keep her daughter. There is drama but it all works out.

For a contemporary romance, this one had minimal sex, but it was well written and the chemistry between Graham and Blake was hot.

A great Summer Time read.

 

Gone Baby Gone (Kenzie and Genarro #4) by Dennis Leanne

Book Description:

Published: April 21, 1999

Format: Audio/OverDrive

Boston private detectives Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro are hired to find four-year-old Amanda McCready, abducted from her bed on a warm, summer night. They meet her stoned-out, strangely apathetic mother, her loving aunt and uncle, the mother’s dangerous, drug-addled friends, and two cops who’ve found so many abused or dead children they may be too far over the edge to come back. Despite enormous public attention, rabid news coverage, and dogged police work, the investigation repeatedly hits a brick wall. Led into a world of drug dealers, child molesters, and merciless executioners, Patrick and Angie are soon forced to face not only the horrors adults can perpetrate on innocents but also their own conflicted feelings about what is best, and worst, when it comes to raising children. And as the Indian summer fades and the autumn chill deepens, Amanda McCready stays gone, banished so completely that she seems never to have existed.

Then another child disappears. . . . Dennis Lehane takes you into a world of triple crosses, elaborate lies, and shrouded motives, where the villains may be more moral than the victims, the missing should possibly stay missing, and those who go looking for them may not come back alive.

Settle in and turn off the phone. From its haunting opening to its shocking climax, Gone, Baby, Gone is certain to be one of the most thrilling, talked-about suspense novels you read this year.

Review –

Another, fantastic, over the top story from Dennis LeHane, but this one is a real gut-wrencher. 

Young children are being kidnapped and seem to drop off the face of the earth and of course the worse case scenario is suspected. They must be taken by pedaphiles, child molesters or murderers, right? That’s what Kenzie and Gennaro try to find out.

It’s been eighteen months since the last book and Kenzie and Gennaro are blissfully happy, living and working together but this case tears them apart and Angie moves out, with help from Bubba(you can always count on him).Patrick didn’t cheat on her and she still loves him but he went by what the law said was the right thing to do not by his heart, like Angie wanted to do.  I knew the author would do something to split them up because once a couple gets too happy in a book, the author causes something catastrophic to happen to their relationship to keep the readers coming back and not becoming bored with the status quo.

I won’t give anything away, but will say that the outcome it not what you expect and leave it at that.

Five stars !

The Angel’s Share (The Bourbon Kings #2) by J.R. Ward

Book Description:

Published: July 26, 2016

Format: Audio/OverDrive

In Charlemont, Kentucky, the Bradford family is the crème de la crème of high society—just like their exclusive brand of bourbon. And their complicated lives and vast estate are run by a discrete staff who inevitably become embroiled in their affairs. This is especially true now, when the apparent suicide of the family patriarch is starting to look more and more like murder…

No one is above suspicion—especially the eldest Bradford son, Edward. The bad blood between him and his father is known far and wide, and he is aware that he could be named a suspect. As the investigation into the death intensifies, he keeps himself busy at the bottom of a bottle—as well as with his former horse trainer’s daughter. Meanwhile, the family’s financial future lies in the perfectly manicured hands of a business rival, a woman who wants Edward all to herself.

Everything has consequences; everybody has secrets. And few can be trusted. Then, at the very brink of the family’s demise, someone thought lost to them forever returns to the fold. Maxwell Bradford has come home. But is he a savior…or the worst of all the sinners?

Review –

A few high points are:

The investigation into the death of William Baldwine shows that foul play is possible and most probable.

We learn that he embezzled over $173,000,000 from his own company and family and also took most of the money out of his wife’s trust, to the tune of $1,000,000.

Maxwell, the youngest of the Baldwine children, comes home looking like a lumberjack and being very secretive.

Gin marries the sexual sadist but still loves another.

Lane and Lizzy become engaged even thought his divorce from Chantal isn’t final.

Miss Aurora has a medical emergency and may not make it

Edward, still drinking heavily, is arrested for the murder of his father.

Can’t wait for the final installment of this series, The Devil’s Cut, to come out next month.

Fantastic book.