How To Tame a Beast in Seven Days by Kerrelyn Sparks Review

In How To Tame a Beast in Seven Days by Kerrelyn Sparks, Luciana leaves everything she has ever known to marry a man feared throughout the land but, in the process, save the life of the father she never knew. Enacting the charade that she must is much harder than Luciana anticipated, and not only must she navigate a social structure she has no experience with, she must decide if she can trust the man that everyone fears, her betrothed.

Lord Leo, the infamous Beast of Benwick, has accepted the lonely existence that his power over lightning has caused him until he meets Luciana and he starts to yearn for more. As the danger around the two of them escalates, will Leo be able to save the woman who has brought light into his dark life, and, more importantly, can he save her from his devastating touch?

I will admit, by the end of Kerrelyn’s Love at Stake series, I had kinda lost interest. Don’t get me wrong, I devored the beginning of the series and they are high on my list of favorites to reread but I just wasn’t that into the last few books. BUT (and this is a big but) I flew through How to Tame A Beast in Seven Days, I love the world that Sparks’ has created. The friends/blood sisters who were raised together not knowing who they are but setting off to save their world one fantastic (presumably) book at a time are intriguing and just the right mix of strength and weakness . Now realize that I enjoy reading fantasy novels (David Eddings and Terry Pratchett anyone?!) so its not too surprising that I would enjoy a good fantasy romance novel. However, Sparks has done a fabulous job world building, the character development is believable and intriguing, and I literally finished How to Tame a Beast in Seven Days and immediately went looking to see when the next novel will be released (August 2017) because I can’t wait to read it. I highly recommend How to Tame a Beast in Seven Days whether you have read fantasy novels before or not.

You can read an except here.

The Embraced Reading Order:

How to Tame a Beast in Seven Days

So I Married a Sorcerer (August 2017)

Rating:

Content: favicon5 NB

Title: How to Tame a Beast in Seven Days

Author: Kerrelyn Sparks

Format: Paperback, eBook

Page Nos.: 415

AISN: B01KFWX5CC

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Release Date: January 26, 2016

Available for purchase: Amazon

Reviewer: Jessica

**I received a copy of this book from the publisher but was not required to provide a review and it did not impact my review in any way.

12 Days of Christmas by Debbie Macomber and an Act of Kindness Challenge

Novel Reaction is excited to take part in sharing the kindness that is one of the great things about Christmas and to celebrate the release of Twelve Days of Christmas by Debbie Macomber, one of my favorite authors. In the spirit of the main character, Julia, Novel Reaction has been asked to share an act of kindness and I thought I would share a little bit about two organizations that have come to touch my heart and that I help when I can.

Currently there are over 60 million refugees in the world, the largest in the history of mankind. These are individuals and families who have left everything they know: homes, jobs, friends, and family in the hopes that they can live a safer and happier life somewhere else. It is easy to see the stories on the news of the events taking place in Europe and think, as safe Americans, that it is too far away from where I am physically located and I don’t have a lot of extra income so what I have won’t make that much of a difference. But I have found two great organizations that are making a difference in people’s lives and that I can help when I do have a little bit extra.

The first is Liftng Hands International, they are a non-profit that has recently started taking care of a refugee camp in Greece. One of the things I really like about Lifting Hands, is besides being able to donate cash (which they use to supplement the military rations provided to the residents of the camp by the Greek military by purchasing fresh fruits and veggies for them), they also have a wish list on Amazon where I can go and pick out what I want/can afford to purchase that is needed by the camp and Lifting Hands ships it to the camp. I really like knowing exactly how I am helping the residents. Recently, the residents were asking for tea pots to make their daily tea in, such a simple comfort but they were having to make the tea in old baby formula cans, so I was able to donate $10.00 to buy a family a tea pot. I know it wasn’t much but hopefully it brought a little comfort to a family that is missing it. While Lifting Hands International has a website, more current information can be found on their facebook page.

The second organization is The Welcome to America Project, when refugees are given clearance to relocate to the U.S. they are provided an apartment for a set period of time and basic necessities. And by basic necessities I mean a bed and that’s about it. The Welcome to America Project gathers gently used furniture and other basic necessities so that families who have arrived with literally what will fit in the airplane luggage can have such luxuries as kitchen tables and chairs, couches to sit on, microwaves, and cleaning supplies. The Welcome to American Project accepts donations of money, furniture, or you can donate your time to help deliver furniture to a recently arrived family.

While it can seem that big problems exist in the world and there isn’t much that an individual can do to make a difference, there are simple acts of kindness that we can do that can make all the difference in someone else’s life. I want to challenge all of you readers to look around and find a simple act of kindness that we can do for someone else.

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Christmas_tree_sxc_huFriendly and bubbly, Julia Padden likes nearly everyone, but her standoffish neighbor, Cain Maddox, presents a particular challenge. No matter how hard she’s tried to be nice, Cain rudely rebuffs her at every turn, preferring to keep to himself. But when Julia catches Cain stealing her newspaper from the lobby of their apartment building, that’s the last straw. She’s going to break through Cain’s Scrooge-like exterior the only way she knows how: by killing him with kindness.

To track her progress, Julia starts a blog called The Twelve Days of Christmas. Her first attempts to humanize Cain are far from successful. Julia brings him homemade Christmas treats and the disagreeable grinch won’t even accept them. Meanwhile, Julie’s blog becomes an online sensation, as an astonishing number of people start following her adventures. Julia continues to find ways to express kindness and, little by little, chips away at Cain’s gruff façade to reveal the caring man underneath. Unbelievably, Julia feels herself falling for Cain—and she suspects that he may be falling for her as well. But as the popularity of her blog continues to grow, Julia must decide if telling Cain the truth about having chronicled their relationship to the rest of the world is worth risking their chance at love.

I have to admit I am posting this without having finished the novel, which is not like me. But this pregnant momma who spends her days chasing after a three year old in the triple digits of the Phoenix heat is struggling to stay up and finish Twelve Days of Christmas, although I really wanted to and have been enjoying the antics and interactions between Julie and Cain. The premise of the novel is cute and so great in the keeping of the true Christmas spirit and I love that Julia keeps trying despite who the first few acts of kindness don’t go over so well with Cain. If you are looking for a read to help you start to get into the Christmas spirit, Twelve Days of Christmas is for you.

You can read an excerpt here.

 

12-days-of-christmasRating: Star 4copy

Content: favicon5 NB

Title: Twelve Days of Christmas

Author: Debbie Macomber

Format: Hardbound, eBook

Page Nos.: 288

ISBN: 978-0553391732

Publisher: Ballantine Mass Market Original

Release Date: October 4, 2016

Available for purchase: Amazon

Reviewer: Jessica

**I received a copy of this book from the publisher but was not required to provide a review and it did not impact my review in any way.

The Art of Taming a Rake by Nicole Jordan #Review

victorian dueling pistolVenetia Stratham will do anything to save her sister from going down the path she once trod, engaging herself to a man who is unfaithful, even if it means Venetia must threaten her sister’s suitor at gun point. In The Art of Taming a Rake by Nicole Jordan, Venetia hunts down Quinn Wild, Earl of Traherne, at a gentleman’s club to convince him to give up his pursuit of her sister, interrupting Quinn’s own hunting but Quinn can’t let Venetia’s reputation suffer anymore at his hands so he agrees to meet with her to discuss the matter later. When their later meeting results in an attempt by someone else to shoot Quinn, Venetia is accused of the crime even though she didn’t do it and the rumor’s start to spread that she was the culprit.

Quinn Wild knows that Venetia isn’t serious when she points the gun at him but Quinn can’t let her good name be smeared and so offers the only solution, to wed him. But as difficult as it was to convince the headstrong, witty Venetia to wed him, it will take all the skill he has developed as a rake to love him. As if that wasn’t hard enough, Quinn must keep the both of them alive and track down whoever it is that is trying to kill him.

Nicole Jordan’s The Art of Taming a Rake is a great mix of adventure, mystery and romance. I really felt for Venetia’s character in standing by her beliefs, even at the cost of her family and her place in society.   The Art of Taming a Rake is the fourth book in the Legendary Lovers series but is a stand alone novel (at the time of writing this I have not read any other books in this series).  The Art of Taming a Rake is a good, quick historical mystery that I enjoyed.

 

You can read an excerpt here.

Legendary Lovers Reading Order:

Princess Charming

Lover Be Mine

Secrets of Seduction

The Art of Taming a Rake

My Fair Lover (release date TBA)

the art of taming a rakeRating: Star 4copy

Content: favicon5 NB

Title: The Art of Taming a Rake

Author: Nichole Jordan

Format: Paperback, eBook

Page Nos.: 416

ISBN: 978-0-553-39255-5

Publisher: Ballantine Mass Market Original

Release Date: January 26, 2016

Available for purchase: Amazon

Reviewer: Jessica

**I received a copy of this book from the publisher but was not required to provide a review and it did not impact my review in any way.

My Kind of Wonderful by Jill Shalvis Review

imageHudson Kinkaid is scheduled to the max: between his crazy family, running ski patrol for the family ski resort, working as a cop in town, and trying to track down his missing brother, he doesn’t have a lot of free time but he especially doesn’t have time for a relationship. In My Kind of Wonderful by Jill Shalvis, despite not having any free time, Hudson finds himself drawn to the mysterious Bailey.

Bailey Moore has spent most of her life having to let others control what she did and when, but now that she is finally in control of her own life, she plans to do things her way and mark things off her list. Hired to create a mural for the Kinkaid family ski lodge, Bailey is determined to finish the project, jump starting the completion of her list.

I didn’t think it would be possible to like a Jill Shalvis series more than I like her Lucky Habor series but the Kincaid family of her Cedar Ridge series is rapidly becoming my favorite. The series stared out great with Second Chance Summer and continues with the fabulous My Kind of Wonderful. Hudson is responsible, loving, and loyal to his family, which is all endearing, but it is Bailey with her spunky attitude, her willingness to push herself, and her desire to live life to the fullest, achieving every thing on her list that makes My Kind of Wonderful such a great and inspiring read. I love the family dynamics of the Kincaids and eagerly look forward to the rest of the series.

Cedar Ridge Reading Order:

Second Chance Summer

My Kind of Wonderful

Nobody But You! (March 2016)

Read an excerpt here.

imageRating: Star 5copy

Content: favicon5 NB

Title: My Kind of Wonderful

Author: Jill Shalvis

Format: Paperback, eBook

Page Nos.: 357

ISBN: 1455586781

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

Release Date: December 22, 2016

Available for purchase: Amazon

Reviewer: Jessica

**I received a copy of this book from the publisher but was not required to provide a review and it did not impact my review in any way.