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June 22, 2009

Reading Roundup

I haven’t mentioned books and reading for some time. I’ve read some excellent books recently that have really stayed with me, and with every one of them it’s been the characters that have grabbed me by the throat. It’s also interesting to note that three of the four books below are written in first person. I’d highly recommend any of the following:

Smooth Talking Stranger by Lisa Kleypas – I always used to read Ms. Kleypas’ historicals, but after historical burnout I hadn’t picked up one of her books for ages or tried her contemporaries. This is the third contemporary set in Texas and featuring members of the Travis family. I hadn’t realized this was a series of sorts and as usual picked up the books out of order. They are written in first person. I started reading quite late and had problems putting the book down. I liked the two main characters, Ella and Jack and their interaction and the plot moved smoothly. There was some great dialogue too. I liked it so much I went looking for the first two books and ordered them online. This particular story is only available in hardcover as yet and was borrowed from the library. I think I’ll be buying a copy in paperback when it comes out because I liked it that much.

Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews – This is book three in the Kate Daniels series, an urban fantasy rather than a romance. I think this series gets better and better with each book. I loved the interplay between Kate and Curran. Once again, it was the characters that grabbed me, although I like the interesting plots in this series. This one contains some Indian mythology.

The Education of Madeline by Beth Williamson – This is Beth’s first NY published book, set in the American West. I liked the characters, although I have to say that the plot didn’t ring true with me. This didn’t stop me devouring the book, and I could be wrong because I’m not an expert in American history by any means! I’m not going into detail because that would mean spoilers. Beth has another book coming with some of the characters she introduced in this book. I’ll be snapping the second book up when it comes out.

Hard Fall by James Buchanan – this is a gay romance. It’s written in first person and is about a Mormon cop who is in the closet. He falls for an ex-con and while investigating a murder, his secret comes out, creating havoc in both is personal and business lives. Joe, the main character is interesting, and I liked the glimpse of the Mormon faith. This is an excellent read.

What books have you read recently? Do you have any recommendations?


  1. Lucinda

    The most recent was The Stone Prince by Gena Showalter. I won an autographed copy a couple of years ago and never got around to reading it until last month. Shame on me for waiting so long, because it was a very good book. I love the flow of her writing, and it was very funny.

  2. Roberta Harwell

    If you need a laugh, pick up Gotcha! by Christie Craig. Other ones I’d recommend are Vexing the Viscount by Emily Bryan and Bound to Please by Lilli Feisty. Have a great day.

  3. Amy W.

    @ Lucinda- I love Gena’s whole series of fantasy/myth & Atlantis books. They are steamy and dreamy!

    As to reads I had one that was a total disappointment but before that was an awesome set of reads by Sherwood Smith called Once Upon a Princess & Twice a Prince. They’re fabulous fantasy reads!!! Also read Feral Passion by Stephanie Bedwell-Grime, great vampire romance; & Adder by Ally Blue, fabulous contemporary gay romance set in the music scene. I also love Ally’s Bay City Paranormal Investigation series, they’re a sci-fi/fantasy gay romance- fabulous! I devoured that series!
    I think that’s all I hit in the past couple of weeks but I’ve been really busy. Oh and I reread G.A. Aiken’s Dragon books (Dragon Actually and About a Dragon) wonderful fantasy romance as well.
    Hmmmmm… I think I see a trend here.
    P.S. I’m going to check out that last one!

  4. Gabriele

    Stven Erikson, Deadhouse Gates
    Ben Kane, The Forgotten Legion

    Not exactly Romance, those. :mrgreen:

  5. Helen Hardt

    Lisa Kleypas is one of my all time favorites, though I haven’t read Smooth Talking Stranger yet. I’ve read the first two in her contemporary series.

    Recently I read The Parlor House Daughter by Joanne Sundell, an American western historical. Very emotional!

  6. Karen Erickson

    I really enjoyed Smooth Talking Stranger, so did my mom and we’re both not huge fans of first person. But if done right of course, it’s wonderful.

    I’m rereading Stephen King’s The Stand. It’s been years and I was itching to read it again. Which is crazy considering the swine flu and the panic around that. Scary! But so good. :mrgreen:

  7. Shelley Munro

    Lucinda – I loved the Stone Prince. I need to catch up with Gena’s latest series. I’ve read the first book of the paranormal series and loved it.

    Roberta – so many people have recommended Christie Craig’s books. They’re difficult for me to get because they’re not in e-format. I don’t buy many print books these days. I have Lilli’s book but haven’t had a chance to read it yet.

  8. Shelley Munro

    Amy – I like Ally Blue’s writing – especially her Bayview series. For some reason I didn’t enjoy Adder as much because the characters annoyed me.

    With m/m I prefer contemporary mainly, although I do venture into shapeshifter. This will probably change at some stage when I run out of contemporary to read! Have you read Josh Lanyon, Laura Baumbach and TA Chase. All really good writers that you can’t go wrong with IMO.

  9. Shelley Munro

    Hey Gabriele – your reads don’t need to be romances. I’m an equal opportunity reader. :mrgreen:

    Helen – I have the first two of Lisa’s books to look forward to!

    Karen – I can’t read Stephen King or horror. I’m such a wimp when it comes to scary stuff.

  10. Fedora

    Shelley, I have STS on my TBR–it’s part of a series though, right? I think I might need to read the previous one, too… I did just read Virginia Kantra’s three Children of the Sea titles–Sea Witch, Sea Fever, and Sea Lord. Selkies! And sadly, no more until next year… *sniff*