- Premium reviews
- Express reviews
- Reviews rated
- Ratings received
A Seduction At Christmas was written by Cathy Maxwell and published by Avon on October 28th, 2008. It is the first in the 'Scandals And Seductions' series, and is 384 pages long.
Desperate for money, Fiona agrees to a devious plan that ends up getting Nick, the Duke of Holburn, into trouble. But there is more at stake than Fiona realizes, and she finds herself posing as Nick's ward while they try to uncover who exactly is trying to murder the duke. The longer they spend in each other's company, the harder they find it to resist the other...
What I thought -
A very exciting story from start to finish.
The romance between Nick and Fiona is sizzling, as well as their steamy encounters, and the chase to find Nick's attacker kept me on the edge of my seat.
I especially like how we've seen the characters before - in another of Cathy Maxwell's novels, 'In The Highlander's Bed'. We only caught a glimpse of the duke, but a lot more of Fiona, so it was nice to read her story - not that you need to have read the other novel to enjoy this one. Both character's had their own personal emotional journey, and reading the help each other get to who they needed to be was a pleasure. Although very different, the characters are both very charming and likable.
As usual, Cathy Maxwell writes beautifully, and tells a capturing tale from the very first word.
I'd definitely reccomend this book to somebody looking for an exciting romance, with adventure thrown in the mix.
A year or so ago, an accident changed Maggie and Caleb's lives. Now Maggie is back at school, and Caleb has just been released from juvenile prison. Upset that he seems to be fitting right back in after her whole future has been ruined, Maggie does her best to stay out of Caleb's way, but the two are thrown together when they both begin to work for the same old woman. The more time they spend together, the closer they grow and the more they begin to find comfort with one another. And soon, Maggie learns that not everything is as it seems...
What I thought -
I was gripped right from the first page to the last. I loved the way that the story is told in two different voices - Maggie and Caleb's - so we really get a well rounded view of their thoughts and feelings.
The plot itself is gripping and emotional, and filled with twists that I honestly didn't see coming.
The romance between the two characters is obviously a big part, but the storyline alongside it is also very interesting, and would have kept me reading even if their hadn't been any romace.
As for the characters - they were two very powerful voices. Both trying to fit back into a world which they used to belong, and realizing that they just aren't the same people anymore. It was great to watch them help each other to grow and learn. There are also some interesting side characters - like old Mrs Reynolds, which the story wouldn't have been the same without.
A great read, and one which I'd highly reccomend to someone looking for an angst filled young romance. 9/10
The Duke & I was written by Julia Quinn and published by Piatkus on 2nd October 2008. It is book 2 in 'The Two Dukes of Wyndham' series. The story is actually set at the same time as the other in the series - 'The Lost Duke of Wyndham', so either can be read first.
Amelia has been engaged to Thomas - the Duke of Wyndham - since she was a child. She has spent the rest of her life waiting for him to marry her, although he doesn't seem very keen to get around to doing that.
Thomas likes the idea of a fiance - mainly to keep the husband hunters away. He does plan on marrying her one day - once he's finished having fun. But just as he begins to realise that he actually quite likes Amelia, his long lost cousin, the possible true Duke of Wyndham, shows up, and if he really is who he says he is, then that makes him Amelia's true fiance also.
As they travel to find answers, Thomas and Amelia find themselves growing closer, just as circumstance might tear them apart...
What I thought -
It was a nice story, but nothing I'd be moved to read again. Having read 'The Lost Duke of Wyndham' first, I actually found this story lacking compared to that one. Definitely not one of Julia Quinn's best stories.
The plot was a good one, but the mystery was all gone if you'd already read 'The Lost Duke of Wyndham', so I was more focussed on the romance instead of the storyline, and what would be the fate of Amelia and Thomas. And honestly, I just didn't feel a connection between the two characters. Their encounters just didn't seem very emotion envoking, and I had a hard time believing in it.
The character's themselves were likable. Amelia was strong willed and lovely, and Thomas was a lot less stuffy than he seemed to be in 'The Lost Duke of Wyndham'. But all in all, they just didn't grow on me.
Not a strong book for it's genre. I found it lacking the excitement and passion you usually find in historical romances.
However, Julia Quinn writes beautifully as always. Although I found it a little dull, it was easy to follow and nicely worded.
Wicked Lovely was written by Melissa Marr and published in 2007. It was re-issued by HarperCollinsChildren'sBooks on 2nd April 2009. It is the 1st in the 'Wicked Lovely' book series, and has 336 pages.
Aislinn has always been able to see faeries, but has had to hide her talent for fear of her life. Faeries can be dangerous, devious, and oh so charming. But then Keenen, the Summer King, decides that Aislinn will be his Queen, and suddenly she has a whole lot more on her plate to worry about - her family, her safety, her freedom, and her friend and maybe something more, Seth.
What I thought -
I'd bought this book on a whim, and then put it on my bookshop and never picked it up. But then I when I needed a book to read on the beach on my holiday, I slipped it in my bag, thinking I'd read a few pages each day while sunbathing. I ended up spending the first two days of my holiday with my nose stuck firmly in the book, because I was just unable to put it down. It had me captivated right from the beginning.
I'm not usually a fan of 'faery' books, but Melissa Marr wrote them brilliantly. Her descriptions of how devious and evil and enchanting they could be had me shivering, and I loved imagining all of the different types, as she was fantastic at describing them.
The storyline was amazing. So exciting and sometimes even scary. I kept saying to myself that I'd just read one more chapter, but that turned into another, and another...
The romance is more of a love triangle - or maybe even a square. Duty pulls Aislinn and Keenen one way, but their hearts pull them another, and you really find that you just don't know who they're going to end up with.
As for the characters, I actually found myself preferring the side characters to Aislinn and Keenen, like Seth - Aislinn's best friend - and Donia - the winter girl forced to try and disuade Aislinn from accepting the position of Summer Queen after failing herself. I just found Seth and Donia easier to sympathise with, and thought they were slightly more tolerable, as sometimes I thought Aislinn and Keenen were just a tad whiney.
I've read the first three books in this series, and this one is by far my favorite. Melissa Marr has an excellent way of writing.
This is probably one of my favorite fantasy genre novels, because it's so different and original.
I'd highly reccomend this to anybody looking for a thrilling read.
Perfect Chemistry was written by Simone Elkeles and published on 23rd December 2008.
Brittany and Alex are from the opposite ends of the social chain. She's popular and rich with the perfect life - or so she leads everyone to believe - and he's a bad boy gang member from the wrong end of town. And then they are partnered together in Chemistry class, and everything they thought they knew becomes unravelled.
Having read another book by Simone Elkeles, I had high expectations for 'Perfect Chemistry', and I wasn't disappointed.
I found the characters so interesting with so many layers. The main female character - Brittany - was a lot more likable than I'd expected, and her love for her sister really made me respect her. I was happy she wasn't just the typical 'popular girl' character that is often portrayed. And the responsibilities Alex had to shoulder really made me feel for him.
I very much enjoyed the storyline - exciting and emotional - and I was on the edge of my seat at parts, waiting to see what would happen next. Although the romance was a big factor, there was also a great plot along side it.
Usually once I've finished reading a book, I pass it along to someone else, but this one I kept for myself so I could read it again.
I'd definitely reccomend this book to someone looking for a very romantic, emotional rollercoaster, with some exciting action on the side. 10/10
Troy is a film adaptation of Homer's great epic. It follows the assault made on Troy by the united Greek forces, and the fate of the men involved. Brad Pitt plays Achilles, Eric Bana plays Hector, and Orlandd Bloom plays Hector's brother, Paris.
The film was released in the UK on 21st May 2004.
I was looking forward to watching this film, as it's the kind of action movie I'm particularily fond of. However, I found myself very disappointed.
Aside from Eric Bana - who I thought gave an especially powerful performance - I found the acting lacking and unbeleivable. In my own opinion, it wasn't Brad Pitt's best role, and I'm usually a big fan of his.
That being said, the fighting scenes were brilliant, and some of them very emotion provoking. If a good, blood thirsty battle is what you're looking for in a film, then this is one I'd definitely reccomend. The special effects were great and very believable.
I also appreciated the family loyalty theme that spanned throughout the movie - it really made the film watchable.
On the whole, I'd give it a 6/10. Thought provoking, yet a bit dry