Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Summer Promises by Laura Simcox

Take set designer Carly Foster, artist Asher Day and degenerate police officer Wheeler Barstow and the results are a contemporary romance filled with intrigue.

Carly admits that closing her eyes and pointing to a map wasn’t the wisest way to choose a summer job, but Ruby Spring, N.M. offered her the opportunity to flee Chicago’s sweltering heat. When Daniel Day hired her to do set design and restore Ruby Spring Theater for an old play he wanted to produce, she accepted the challenge and looked forward to an exciting summer——with one exception. No romance.

Summer romances ended in heartbreak, and Carly had enough of them. No more! Until she met Daniel’s brother, Asher Day. “…his hands moved up her thighs and caressed her hips….Struggling for a good reason to stop him was pointless…” Carly thrills readers by wavering, getting involved with the wrong man and finally finding the man of her dreams.

Unfortunate situations and mysterious happenings follow Carly throughout the summer and she questions her rationale for ditching the city for the mountains. By the end of the story, readers approve of her decision. They also like Carly for her independent, adventurous spirit. She understands that life throws curves, but she adjusts to them and forges ahead with a positive attitude.

Simcox describes Albuquerque and its environs with expertise, which entices the uninitiated to mark that area of the U.S. a must-see destination. Her cast of characters are people in real life: homosexual Ross; young, happily married Daniel and Sophie Day with newborn baby Daniel; the incomparable, aging actress Marilyn Masters with her outrageous antics and her young lover, Nicky. Throughout the book there is the hope that another antagonist will appear, which heightens the intrigue.

The overall theme affirms the principle that good prevails and evil fails, and, of course, that people can find their true love.

Monday, September 3, 2012

"Instructing an Heiress" by Judy Teel

  Reviewing books has become my interest of late, and a clever series that author Judy Teel has developed is the Cinderella Heiresses romance series. The second book, "Instructing an Heiress," introduces charming, intelligent and business-minded CK Kazner. What a treat to read about a young, modern woman.

  CK has to account to her grandfather, the patriarch of the family, who gives her an unfathomable dictum: marry within a month and produce an heir in a year. The consequence of not abiding by his demand? She is disinherited and the Kazner empire goes outside the family. As the only heir, CK is appalled but realizes she has blocked out romance in her life.

  Her grandfather has made it clear that he will win any litigation, so CK calls on Ryan Anderson, her long-time friend, employee and well-known playboy to help her find a husband. Ryan doesn't want to spoil CK's naivete, but because of her insistence, he agrees. What a ride it becomes! Readers will see CK emerge as a sensual woman and credit Ryan with his efforts.

In the first book of the series, “Seducing an Heiress,” Dakota Jamison is also a strong, determined protagonist. Glad that Teel puts women in an authoritative position and remain a sensual person..