Thumbs down for A Christmas Proposal: A Betty Neels Best Selection, Vol 1 by Natsu Momose adapted from novels by Betty Neels. Manga/romance.
Manga-ized versions of some of my favorite old-school romances. Simply dreadful. Not even fun dreadful. I just had to know.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for All the Possibilities by Nora Roberts. Romance.
As mentioned before–maybe I should just add an explanation to my blog–I like the idea of romance novels, but my tolerance for pushy men is about nil; ergo, my tolerance for standard-issue M/F romance novels is about nil. I do, however, keep reading back-cover blurbs in hope. I was so astonished that Nora had made the hero of All the Possibilities a politician that I read the first page.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for Polly; The Bachelor’s Wedding; and The Edge of Winter by Betty Neels. Romance.
These three are not among my favorites books by Betty Neels, but their inclusion here warrants a batch review explaining why I read them in the first place.
Betty Neels wrote 123 books, each of which clock in at around 185 pages. They are what we now call ‘sweet’ romances–not a reflection of their girly gushiness, because they haven’t got any of that, but ‘sweet’ being one end of a romance-literature spectrum of explicitness which passes through ‘sexy’ and eventually ends up at ‘porn.’ There is no sex in Neels’s books, even on the occasions on which there is a marriage of convenience.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for The Magpie Lord; A Case of Possession; Flight of Magpies; and Jackdaw by KJ Charles. Historical fantasy romance.
These came to my attention in an article on Tor.com. I sample a lot of books, mind you. A lot. Most of them, I don’t continue to read. I certainly don’t get hooked in the first couple of pages, decide to take a chance with my $1.99 and a few hours of my time, and never–when done with the first book–do I download and binge-read the next three books like an addict, mentally mumbling at the author “Take my money–please” and trawling her website for extra stories.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee. Young adult historical romance.
It’s 17– and Monty’s in love with his best friend Percy. Joined by Monty’s sister Felicity, they go on the Grand Tour of Europe. Everything that happens after that would be spoilers. I was expecting a sarcastic teen romance with historical trappings which I would put down after ten pages.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for Cotillion by Georgette Heyer. Romance.
This is my third Georgette Heyer. I always feel that I should like her more than I do – that’s why I keep trying. And this one, like the other two, was perfectly enjoyable. I just find them…pleasing, not riveting.
Mr. Westruther drew his snuff-box from his pocket, and flicked it open. “If someone would have the goodness to inform me whether I am assisting at a tragedy or a farce I should be grateful,” he said sardonically.
… >> Read more
Thumbs up for Neanderthal Seeks Human by Penny Reid. Romance.
I am terribly conflicted about this book. To be clear, I enjoyed it overall and will try other books by the author. Penny Reid writes what she bills as “smart romances,” and yes, she is both very smart and very funny – I bookmarked many pages that made me laugh out loud, mostly pertaining to the heroine Janie’s hilarious habit of running off at the mouth about trivial facts when stressed.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for An Almond for a Parrot by Wray Delaney. Historical Fiction/Fantasy/Erotica.
Sophisticated reason to read a book: I was intrigued by the title. But it turned out to be charming. Tully Truegood ends up as a courtesan accidentally (as one does), then in prison (quite intentionally). Here, she recounts events. A pleasing costume-drama confection. Light on the erotica, light on the romance, gently witty, very nice use of the heroine’s magical ability to turn ghosts manifest.… >> Read more