Book Hoarders Anonymous

I have too many books. There, I admit it. I'm working on it though.
If He Only Knew... - Debbi Rawlins

Creepy chick on cover doesn't seem v. into it.


Because I totally relate to a poor little rich trust fund baby and her almost gratuitous law degree from Yale...


The book starts out at her going away party. Not the going away party you assume; the going away party for her alter ego who has decided she can't take living on a legal secretary's salary and doing without her favorite booze and high class dining one more day. She's going home.


Chapter one is several weeks later when the former boss she had a crush on calls her out of the blue and wants to meet for dinner or something. The next 2/3 of the book is her hiding her identity from him while sleeping with him. I sort of wondered if she would ever have told him. Her sister, not realizing the poor guy was completely in the dark, arranged a double date and clued him in.


Near the end, she reluctantly invited him to a reception of some sort her parents were hosting. His client showed up drunk and said things to her in his (the H) hearing, prompting him to decide they were mostly just tolerating him, so he started to leave but changed his mind.


Epilogue has them back in NY (she was from Atlanta) so I guess they worked things out.

The Cowboy - Jayne Ann Krentz

This is the sort of theme I have a hard time getting behind.

The H - corporate shark - spotted, pursued and appeared to snag the attentions of the h - employee of another corporate shark and competition. Besides marginalizing the h, he didn't tell her he was the competition until after she'd talked about work, etc...for 2 months. She did what any person with integrity would do - went to her employer and told him everything. Cost the H the deal. He went off on her and left.


Apparently he expected her to come crawling to him on hands and knees.


So now, he and her father have manipulated her into coming to his ranch where he intends to win her back, although he gives the impression that it's less a winning her over than a railroading.


In the meantime, his PA, unhappy that he's seemingly lost his edge over the h, is selling him out..and trying to frame the h.


Yeah I don't know. The feeling of being used would be a hard one to ever get past, no matter how much he assured me otherwise. Perhaps if there wasn't the lie by omission (failure to disclose that he's in competition with her boss), or his blowing up on her for her doing the right thing...

So I Married a Sorcerer - Kerrelyn Sparks

As much as I liked the first one, this one bugged me.


The h - cloistered away most of her life, was not the least bit baffled or bothered by the H's referrals to his wanker. You'd think she'd either act horrified upon his speaking like that, or baffled as to what he was talking about.


The H - constantly making comments about his cock to a young woman he knows has spent her life in a convent. He WASN'T doing it for shock value.


That damned Chameleon made an attempt at another crown and...he got away. AGAIN. Really dislike recycled bad guys. Kill him off and move on.


The competition and the utter lack of repercussions. Really? Your top 3 men are competing, two of them plot to kill the third one, and one of those later is killed by a dragon. Who exactly do you expect to lead your various armed forces?


The nun acting as the h's personal Dot Matrix and her infernal virgin alarm.


The h noticing a bird acting odd, thinking it wasn't really acting like Brody, and not having the good sense to not say anything just in case.


Brody - and the H for that matter - not warning the h there was another shifter around.

Bring the Heat - G.A. Aiken

The usual madness and mayhem. The h is Branwen the Destroyer - one of Bram and Ghleanna's kids. The H is Aiden the Devine and I actually don't know much about his relatives, beyond that he mostly avoids his family.


I assume this is a wrap-up of that war that's been going on for...seemingly forever. The eyeless god appears to be destroyed by several other gods, including the dragon god, so no more Zealots. What's next? Uh... I'm sure Annwyl will find something that needs destroying.


Amusing things - Kieta and Ragnar now have 14 kids(!). All the dragons seem to like pushing their kids/parents buttons (the Eastlander Empress seems to deliberately "forget" her other offsprings' names, Gwenvael isn't the only one with a penchant for hugging male relatives who are uncomfortable with such affection.)

Indecent Suggestion (Harlequin Blaze, #189) - Elizabeth Bevarly



First one of these friends-to-lovers books that I haven't spent half of it muttering invectives at one of the MCs.


H loves the h. He knows it, he's known it for some time. But she's shown reluctance to move past friendship and he doesn't want to lose her completely.


h is having difficulties of late - she keeps remembering a party a few years back where they'd come close to ah...doing it. She doesn't want to mess the friendship up though, because for several weeks after the incident (which she'd come to her senses and stopped before tab A got anywhere near slot B), he'd been cranky and had avoided her. She's a bit slow on the uptake. She's attracted, but in her mind, feels like she came on to him and that anything more will screw things up.


They have a little smoking issue. He loses a bet so they attend a hypnotherapist who gets them mixed up with a newlywed couple who're having...difficulties. The unsafe word is "underwear" - a bad thing since they're working on an advertising project for a company that makes sexy...underwear. This causes some hilarity initially as the poor h is affected by this (the H apparently wasn't open for that particular suggestion) and well, she seems to have little inhibition when the word is uttered. Eventually though, he is clued in - by the hypnotherapist who asks him how everything is going, which is when they figure out the mixup.


Much soul searching and a visit to said hypnotherapist later, she's figured things out for herself and corners in his lair where he's hiding, feeling sorry for himself. A bit of hanky-panky and a ring later, HEA.


Highlights - likable couple. Did I mention smokin'? I meant the steamy version; not the one they originally sought the hypnotherapist for.


Low-lights - was he really willing to play third wheel if it meant being able to be around her? The narrative was like, you know, being in someone's, I dunno, head. (yes; there were places it was written like that). Ok, thinking about that, we are theoretically supposed to be in someone's head but it shouldn't be so choppy there. Speech I can see.

Blue Sage (Western Lovers: Ranch Rogues #2) - Anne Stuart

I ponder a lot, about these characters who stay in small towns where they're miserable. I really ponder why this town continues to exist. Seems like such a tragedy in a town that barely qualifies for a truck stop (with no gas station...where do people gas up?). the kindest thing would be for the whole town to die. And of course, I wonder why something like what happened would keep being rehashed.


So basically, the past is that the H's father, a Korean war vet, had...issues...from his time there. And the H's mother, freaked out by him, left with the H, then a 2 year old. 15 years later, he snapped during the 4th of July, and shot a bunch of people. It is implied that prior to this, a bunch of animals in the area turned up dead, at his hand. The h was the lone survivor among the victims - she was shot in the knee.


The H has spent the last 15 years having people look at him suspiciously due to who his father was. I kinda puzzled at that. His almost-step-father insists that he go back to his parents' home town and well, figure things out.


The h has become, whether she wanted to or not, the town martyr. She wants out. The town judge took her in by marrying her (he's dead now), and well, everyone takes care of her...until she sleeps with the H, then they turn on her like rabid dogs. (see "why do people remain in small towns when they're miserable?"). He stays away for a bit and they sort of forgive her, deciding she's been victimized again (well, yeah - by them).


In the meantime, someone is planning on recreating the tragedy. The H's reappearance is v. convenient as everyone suspects him. The person makes their move against the h, the H for whatever reason goes back and gets her untied, then they go and avert disaster.


As stated earlier, I don't get why the h had stayed there. I don't get why she let herself get railroaded into a marriage (no relatives apparently). I don't get a lot of things about this set up really.

Glass Houses (Men at Work: Tall, Dark & Smart #11) - Anne Stuart

Dude on cover looks more like your friendly neighborhood MD or pharmacist than a business tycoon.


Heroine owns art deco high rise in NY (and also a modeling agency). Hero is developer who wants to put in a modern plaza on the block her building occupies - the whole block. Alrighty then.


I do get that real estate is like, gold there. Seems though that some nods to an architectural gem should be made. I mean; I'm trying to imagine the architect who'd brush off something like that so casually. And maybe thinking they're in the wrong business. Just imagining the reaction if word got out that someone wanted to bring down the Chrysler building and put in a soulless high rise.


But that's neither here, nor there. It's just that as a plot point, it's kinda weak. And well, there's not much said about how the surrounding buildings were brought down.

So our H is determined to buy, and our h is determined not to sell. And because his lawyer is having no luck, he decides to try himself. It does backfire on him, because she gets under his skin. It's one of those frenemy sort of things - once contact is made, he keeps finding reasons to see her, even though things always seem to end in an argument...except when they don't.


There's a lot of other drama that's kind of filler - a new model for her agency, who tries to blackmail them, the model's ex who wants to know if he really is an ex (because the cow didn't just tell him; she slunk off), the receptionist and her as-yet unrequited crush on a male model (which gets resolved. Yay?). There's also the H knowing the report that the building needs some serious work because it's becoming unstable and using this knowledge to cause damage to the structure.


Eventually, the damage has results - the building has to be evacuated. The h, in a moment of enlightenment, signs the papers, gives her receptionist half the agency, and leaves for CA.


As grand gestures go, I'd guess deciding to remodel the old building while having new plans drawn up for the rest of the block is a pretty grand one. And it gets her attention - she comes back...and signs that last bit of paperwork she'd ignored all attempts by lawyers to get signed. It's a prenuptial agreement. Sneaky. V. sneaky. She didn't even look at it first; just signed it.

Beauty and the Brain - Elizabeth Bevarly

First off, I couldn't read this in one sitting. I don't advise trying.
Second off, this is not the sort of book I expected from this author.


I hurt for the h. She's 2 years older than the H - child prodigy - and got stuck with him as a lab partner in their Jr year in HS. Chemistry was not her strong suit. He was...not nice about it in his constant disparagement of her intelligence. Add to that, a mother who expressed disapproval at her failures... She's a travel agent now, who can't travel because she doesn't travel well. She never pursued her strengths - geography, art - because her self esteem got tangled up in her weaknesses.


He's back in town to study the comet. Her mother - mayor - generously offers her house (that the h rents from her) for him to stay in, forcing them in close proximity. He's still verbally abusive. It's because he's attracted to her and doesn't wanna be <eye roll>.


She tries v. hard to play nice, and when that fails, tries avoiding him. Every now and then, an olive branch of sorts gets extended, they have a few minutes of civility, then he manages to remind her that he thinks she's stupid. The night of the comet, they spend the night together, causing him to miss it. He doesn't react well the next morning.


More avoidance (not that I blame her). He reads her old school stuff and figures out she'd had a crush on him in spite of his being an ass when they were kids. Decides to make lots of amends, HEA, the end...


Do I believe the HEA? Strangely enough, yes. BUT...SOMEbody has his work cut out for him both in his own mindset and in building up that self-esteem he's systematically shredded. That actually might be the only reason I believe it - she has such a low opinion of herself that she'll take whatever crumbs he offers.


I just...wonder I guess...why these three women stayed here. The other one of the trilogy I read, the h's father was a patronizing ass toward her. This one, her mother considered her a colossal disappointment. The third one, I don't know if I have that one but what little I've seen of her, the town seems to have put her on a pedestal with a "do not touch" sign on its base.

Private Eye: A Tiger's Eye Mystery (Tiger's Eye Mysteries) (Volume 2) - Alyssa Satin Capucilli

The pb copy I have also includes the short story that marks the beginning of the series.


So our h's grandma she never knew about shows up. Now, to be honest, I have to wonder exactly where did she think her parents came from. I suppose her aunt and uncle just gave vague answers to the question. All that aside, she discovers she's part banshee and that her grandfather was an abusive jerk. Oh, and that banshees are being killed off. Hmmm.


Of course, naturally it's a local who she'd thought of as a nice fellow but who does hate banshees. He has other issues too as we come to discover. He tries v. hard to kill the h.


The novella was interesting. Jack is at this point, heading to Dead End. He's also without direction now that the fights over the past 10 years have come to a conclusion. At least he's back though - one of the last times he was seen in the Atlantean series, he'd lost his human side. He stops to eat, notices a pretty girl, and gets sucked into drama of figuring out who shot and kidnapped Santa. His take on the whole adventure? Avoid women wearing shoes with red soles...and possibly eat at Wendy's instead of diners the rest of the way.

Her Counterfeit Husband (Mustang, Montana) (Silhouette Intimate Moments #885) - Carla Cassidy

I think I was halfway through this one when I realized I'd read another book in the series a week or so ago.


So our h got worked over by a con artist. She had an inheritance, and some insurance money, and he used his good looks and charmed her into marriage. Then his partner stole her money, and he "disappeared"...after getting her knocked up.


His identical twin comes behind to a) figure out what happened and b) clean up his mess if necessary. Poses as him for a bit, before finally revealing himself to her. The accomplice is after him for the money. He figures, based on twin's past history, the trail leads to Vegas so they go, and find the end of the trail for twin.


Go back, and with help of local sheriff, and h's retired bounty hunter - brother, set up a trap...that accomplice fails to spring. Instead accomplice walks in an unlocked door and takes them by surprise after everyone has presumably gone home. Fortunately, the bounty hunter was suspicious so didn't.


It was a quick read. I couldn't help but wonder if pregnancy hormones didn't help things along. Also thought H maybe a bit too quick to roll over for a PI. Really hard to imagine him being v. effective as beta as he seemed at times.

Dead Eye (A Tiger's Eye Mystery) (Volume 1) - Alyssa Day

Just what I needed at the moment - an impossible to put down book.


Written in FP, it features a new character - Tess - and Jack, the tiger shifter from the Warrior of Poseidon series. His uncle has died and left him half a pawn shop and...a PI business. He shows up right on the heels of trouble. The local sheriff unfortunately, is in on it, and Tess and Jack spend the entire book variously ducking and investigating. Fortunately, they get lucky. Fortunately, they figure things out. Now I need to make myself ignore book 2 and do things.

A Taste of Texas - Liz Talley

This one has a backstory. Lessee...


The H was apparently a creeper in earlier books in the series (no; am not hunting them down). He's the younger son of a couple who prized (or at least, the father did) his older brother's athletic prowess and indulged in his waywardness, while mostly tolerating the studious and somewhat whimsical H. Older brother got killed, so H felt it his duty to step into his shoes. In the meantime, he had this friend that he ignored publicly...


The h was one of two children to a couple of aging hippies who eschewed responsibility along with authority apparently. Kids spent their formative years bouncing from commune to commune. At some point, the preteen h managed to get herself plopped at her aunt's B&B where she spent the next 6(?) years. The H was her neighbor...and friend - at least in private. He ignored her in school. He also was too busy screwing one of the cheerleaders to attend some sort of recital and hear a poem she'd written for him. So she hand delivered it - as a paperwad, and left town. Oh, of course he was still with the cheerleader when she delivered it.


I'm hazy about this but...she was 16 at the time and still a minor, so where exactly did she go? She didn't finish HS; got a GED instead. She married some guy shortly after graduating culinary school, and is now a well-known chef. Her husband died 2 years prior while on the way to either collect their son after karate practice or some competition (confused about that one too). She's a driven workaholic and is discovering, when forced to actually spend time with the kid, that there are holes in his housebreaking.


She's staying for some ungodly reason with her aunt, next door to the H, trying not to be attracted to him, trying to keep her son from forming an attachment, etc. I can't really figure out the reason behind this. She knew he lived next door, how did she expect to avoid him, or did that never occur to her?


He, genius that he is, encourages the kid's sports obsession over her objections, flirts with her, etc.


The aunt tries her own form of manipulations to get them together.


And the kid makes me want to drag him by one ear to a room somewhere for a "come to Jesus" moment. He's rude, ill-mannered, disrespectful.


Somehow, they wrangle a HEA out of this. Somehow, the H grows a pair and tells his parents in general and his dad in particular to shove it. And I'm just wondering why he sat there, in a carriage house on his parents' property, on a degree in British Lit? Why didn't he push to become a teacher or something? Why the heck didn't he MOVE?

Imminent Danger - Carla Cassidy

It got a 3 because I'm mostly burned out.


The girl on the cover does look pregnant. Apparently whoever matched covers with books was asleep at the wheel because the h is NOT.


The background is that she's hidden away by US Marshalls outside witless protection as her sister and BIL were cops investigating other cops who killed them while she was hiding in the closet. They figured there was too much risk of her being found going through their normal network. They called upon the H for some unknown reason.

Official story is that she's his fiancee' and nobody knew he was involved (small town). Brilliantly, he lets one of his deputies in on the secret.


In the meantime, they have a crimewave of sorts - someone has kidnapped two single women from their homes, taken them to the Kissing Tree (yes, this is a thing), and well, kissed them.


Over the course of what...a week or two (not sure there), the original bad guys are arrested, and the Casanova (the kidnapper) has apparently escalated to raping one.

The h gets spooked because she heard someone outside her window...which really should have made the H suspicious of who this person might be as she, while single, is supposedly engaged to HIM, and only one person in town knows otherwise.


Of course, an argument later, the stage is set so she can get grabbed and since she's (temporarily) blind and relying on other senses, she figures out who it is.


Thoughts - the guy is all kinds of stupid to grab a person he *knows* is being collected in less than a day by US Marshalls. Did the thought never cross his mind that by messing with her, he'd invite all sorts of government attention into his proclivities? And he was rather obvious - a large person, even if you don't notice the smell of mint from his soap, in a town where everyone knows everyone, how many people meeting that description are there? Even the H seemed to be mentally facepalming - everyone knew him, everyone trusted him, he could pick locks, etc.


Kicker - h's testimony wasn't needed for original purpose as one of the dirty cops did the canary impression once caught.

Daddy By Choice (Maternity Row) - Paula Detmer Riggs

First off, if sex during pregnancy isn't your bag, you don't wanna read this one as the h is around 6 months along at the beginning. Second off, being a parent myself, I was variously skeptical and/or incredulous about some of the lengths gone to in order to arrange the H and the h's interaction.


A long long time ago, in a galaxy far away<sarcasm>, our h found herself exceedingly attracted to a young bronc buster who rented a hotel room and made sure the sheets were clean (what a guy...). They used protection but it had a leak apparently. They promised to write, then he stopped. He showed up on the doorstep 2 weeks after her parents and the Dr had pressed her to give the baby up for adoption. She more or less told him to go to hell.


We find out as the story goes along, 5 or 6 years later he went back, armed with a bs and a ring, only to discover he'd put it off a day too late because he almost blundered into her wedding reception.




The h had difficulties with her first, which lead to her being subfertile. The guy she married did not want kids. She got preggers at around the age of 39, upon which he told her it was either him or the baby. Since she's still preggers, obviously she preferred the baby. The Dr tells her she's high risk and recommends the H as the best in the country (incredulous moment no. 1 - only one OB in the country? Seriously?!)


So she goes, and over the course of the book, she gets under his skin (among other things), has to deal with the douchebag ex (who unsatisfyingly enough, is never really dealt with), has the long lost daughter show up, and confusingly enough for me, doesn't really give her the real answer as to why she adopted her out (really, why would you make excuses instead of just saying your parents made you?). Shortly after the daughter showed up, she called the H and told him. He came over and while she was talking, she had a sudden bad complication which resulted in a race to the hospital and him having to do an emergency section. I'd look it up but my recollection is that even if you're in the hospital when it happens, that one doesn't always lead to a good outcome. She's at 8 months and the baby isn't even 5 pounds


Now granted, I always had rather hefty kids but that's close enough to almost not be a premmie so the weight seems a bit...low. No info given how long he was in the neonatal unit either. The impression I was given was they went home at the same time so maybe a couple of days if that?


To be honest, I was mostly ok with the H/h. Mostly. It's just that the surroundings got in the way.

Cajun Crazy: A Cajun Novel - Sandra Hill

I had issues with most everyone in this one.


The heroine for her lack of self control/respect with regards to members of the opposite sex from her home state, for her attitude about her mom


The heroine's mom for acting like a dingbat at times (since she was middle aged, her daughter's judgmental assessments of her clothing style was a source of irritation)


The hero, for his attitude towards the heroine, and collectively with his dad, for setting such a poor example for a 5 year old girl.


Said 5 year old for being a demanding little brat wrapped in a bubbly package


Low-lights - the H bursting in on the h and an employee's sting...and being indignant that she was upset about his interference. The H making comments about her love life (he had all the makings of a player, not one to talk)


Highlights? The trial.


It just seems like conversations get skipped in this series in lieu of manipulation. And when the conversations actually are allowed to happen, they always reach an impasse where the only way the couple can be together is with Tante Lulu's manipulations. Just seems like they never really get to figure things out for themselves, and that bugs me. This one kinda underscores that. I don't think the H will be ok with her doing undercover work. I think sooner or later, he'll blow her cover in a misguided attempt to rescue her, and get someone hurt. And all of Tante Lulu's shenanigans are not going to fix that.

Military Grade Mistletoe - Julie Miller

I guess the biggest issue I have with this is the heroine's being utterly oblivious to how members of the opposite sex might interpret her friendliness. Considering she's a HS English teacher... She's not the first overly friendly heroine I've run into who's picked up a stalker either. That's actually kind of a trend I wish authors would ditch - both the implication that being an outgoing person encourages that and the implication that men are incapable of recognizing friendliness as just that.


The H is dealing with issues from his last mission. overwhelmed by her initially. He notices something off though and decides to stick around anyway.


Eventually the stalker outs himself - by attempting to kill her...and the student with a crush. The H and her retired police dog save the day, decides he got through it without wigging out so he's able to function so they can actually have a relationship... Yay?

Currently reading

Sandra And The Scoundrel
Jacqueline Diamond