Friday, January 18, 2013

Friday Five: Historical Romance Edition (#01)

I read a lot of books. Shocking, really! Unfortunately, though, I am fairly consistently behind in reviewing. And taking a few months off last year did not help. Basically, there are books I would love to review, but I don't really have enough to say about them for a full-out, detailed review (most likely because I read them too long ago). But they still deserve to mentioned! Rather than trying to force stiff, fluff-filled reviews, after some contemplation, I came up with this feature. One Friday a month, I will be posting these mini-review batches, each featuring books from a specific genre. This will help me catch up on reviews, but it also won't clog up everyone's reader with short, separate posts. Now, without further ado, behold the first Friday Five, featuring the Historical Romance genre.

Book: A Week to be Wicked by Tessa Dare
Series: Spindle Cove, #2
Published: March 27, 2012 (Avon)
Rating: Staying in Tonight
Thoughts: This was the very first book I ever pre-ordered, because I was SUPER excited about if after the build-up between the couple in the first book. It did not disappoint! I do like road trip books set in modern day, but they have nothing on the carriage/hackney/mail coach road trips in historicals. I just love them so much, and this was no exception. Plus, the two leads were still superbly fabulous; the snappy banter and fierce attraction made for a great dynamic. Dare really just takes witty to a whole new level. Colin's comments and inner dialog were hilarious, and I really liked Min. Overall, a fantastic addition to one of my favorite historical series!
Favorite Quote: "Oh no. Oh God. I couldn't possibly be so stupid." - "Don't limit yourself. You can be anything you wish."

Book: Dukes to the Left of Me, Princes to the Right by Kieran Kramer
Series: Impossible Bachelors, #2
Published: November 30, 2010 (St. Martin's Paperbacks)
Rating: Lunch Break Read
Thoughts: I will give this book points for originality; it had one of the most original and hilarious h/hr meetings ever. The heroine belonged to a group of friends happy to be spinsters, and they were all great. The spy plot was there, but it thankfully did not take up too much of the story. The book also had great vocabulary, which always makes me happy! I learned the words sinecure, rout, and nonce. Unfortunately, the story dragged quite a bit toward the beginning and end, and there was some over-the-top drama I didn't really appreciate.
Favorite Quote: She had an obsession with his mouth now. And his hands. By God, and everything else about him, too.

Book: The Capture of the Earl of Gelncrae by Stephanie Laurens
Series: The Cynster Sisters Trilogy, #3
Published: January 31, 2012 (Avon)
Rating: Lunch Break Read
Thoughts: This book was not exactly what I expected from the summary, but I wound up mostly enjoying it nonetheless. I had two main issues with this book: the necklace Angelica had that apparently could tell you your ~hero~ when you wore it, and the fact that it was so long I got seriously bored. There were many unnecessary scenes of her family reacting/plotting about her kidnapping, but I am sure that someone who followed Laurens' books would love them. If they were, for instance, the Bridgertons, I would have loved to see the family all interacting together. But I digress. Enough with the negativity. There were quite a few things I liked about the book, too. Namely, the whole basic plot: Angelica is kidnapped by a man she thinks is her hero, but is really the guy who orchestrated the kidnapping of her sisters. Oh, and he's supposed to be dead. He also happens to be swoontacular, so romance commences. (I seriously love historical romance for plots like these.) I also like that Angelica was confident in the fact that he wanted her. Admittedly, it stemmed from the ridiculous necklace, but it added a nice dynamic to their relationship I enjoyed.
Favorite Quote: Never tell any male that he’s sweet.  It’s an invitation to be anything but.

Book: Waking Up with the Duke by Lorraine Heath
Series: London's Greatest Lovers, #3
Published: June 28, 2011 (Avon)
Rating: Staying in Tonight
Thoughts: This is one of the most original plots I have ever heard of, and I was completely intrigued by the thought when I discovered it. I've never read anything like it, before or since. It was a recipe for a deliciously angsty romance, which is one of my favorite things ever. The book overall was not as good or as angst-filled as I had anticipated, but it was incredibly addicting. I believed Ransom (Yes, that's his name. Not one of the high points of the story.) and his motives for agreeing with his friend's proposal. Their relationship development was slow and beautiful. Although there was a pointless side story and some little details that bothered me, I enjoyed the main one. My emotions were quite engaged throughout the entire book, and it made me cry more than once.
Favorite Quote: As far as bloody awful things go, it’s one of the best I’ve experienced.

Book: Beguiling the Beauty by Sherry Thomas
Series: Fitzhugh Trilogy, #1
Published: May 1st 2012, (Berkley Sensation)
Rating: Staying in Tonight
Thoughts: I had an odd sort of relationship with this book. Objectively, I enjoyed everything about it. But for some reason, I spent most of the story feeling rather detached from the characters. I don't know if it was me or the way it was written, but that feeling was disconcerting. At the same time, though, I did not want to put it down at all. The actions that set the plot into motion were rather overdramatic and ridiculous, but the plot itself was fantastic and original. I enjoyed the uniqueness of it, especially how the hero fell in love with the heroine without ever seeing her face. I also read this book after the second in the series, so it was interesting to see the Book 2 couple before their "romance" took place.
Favorite Quote: When she laughed, nothing was impossible.  He could climb Mount Everest, cross the Sahara, and raise the lost realm of Atlantis all in a day.

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