Monday, November 12, 2012

Playing the Royal Game by Carol Marinelli

Synopsis: STOP THE PRESS:  THE SANTINA-JACKSON ROYAL FAIRY TALE -- FACT OR FICTION? — It seemed like every girl's dream:  fall in love with a prince and be whisked off for your very own glamorous happy-ever-after -- a royal fairy tale for Allegra Jackson and Prince Alessandro Santina. — Allegra's headline-grabbing family hardly prepared her for a life of public duty, and sinfully delicious Prince Alessandro has always seemed virtually allergic to the idea of settling down in Santa Maria.

Out of all the flamboyant, beautiful women his name's been linked with, the heir to the throne picked ordinary Allegra with the family from hell....

My Thoughts: I have mixed emotions about this book. I enjoyed it very much yet felt the I Love You's were out of place. 

Carol Marinelli did an excellent job of creating characters that I connected to. My heart broke for Allegra and I wanted to cheer for every character who bucked the Santina governing system. The characters were great. The plot was great. The romance could have been better.

Throughout the book the H/h were separated much of the time. When they were together they fought. Allegra was often saying how much Alex had changed from the man she met in London to the uptight cold fish he was in Santina. With that in mind I was not sure how she fell in love with him.

His inner thoughts of love, however,  were actually more believable. I liked that Marinelli didn't say 'and he realized he had loved her since they first met.' Nope. It was at the wedding that he realized he was falling in love with her. No instantaneous love at first sight which I very much appreciate!

I would recommend this book to fans of Harlequin and to not quite fans of category romances. Just keep in mind the I Love You's part is a little hard to swallow but overall you'll find this a great -- curl up in your favorite overstuffed chair by a warm fire on a cold afternoon -- read.


Friday, November 9, 2012

Blood on Silk by Marie Treanor

Synopsis: The debut of a seductive new contemporary series of vampires, lust, and revenge. While in Romania researching historical superstitions, Scottish academic Elizabeth Silk comes upon the folk tale of Saloman, a seductive prince staked centuries ago, legend's most powerful vampire. Now, in the ruins of a castle crypt, Elizabeth discovers supernatural legends that have come alive. Her blood has awakened him. Her innocence has aroused him. But Elizabeth unleashes more than Saloman's hunger, and it's going to unite them in ways neither could have imagined.

My Thoughts: I seriously had trouble getting into this book. I started reading it in October 2011 and continually set it aside for something that looked better. I can't fault the writing or the plot though. They were solid and well done.

Saloman is an ancient vampire recently awakened after being betrayed 300 years ago and imprisoned (entombed) for all those years. He is not a warm fuzzy vampire (read this to mean completely different from Lynsay Sands' and Kerrilyn Sparks' silly vamps). He is judge, jury and executioner. He needs Elizabeth's blood to get stronger. He needs to kill her to return to his full power.

Elizabeth is a scholar. She sees things in black and white so she really has problems with Saloman who exists in those gray areas. She struggles with the new knowledge of vampires and her part in 'bringing' back a potential threat to humankind. But mostly she struggles with her attraction to Saloman. She doesn't want to want him but she does. Unfortunately she also wants to live. She knows when Saloman is done toying with her he will kill her.

I didn't have any issue with who the characters were. What I had issues with was the romance. It really is more of an Urban Fantasy and could have been better without any I Love Yous. Aside from some serious lustful chemistry and some mind blowing sex I am not sure how they fell in love. Clear up to the end Elizabeth was saying I Hate You. Matter of fact she said I hate you I hate you I love you practically all in one breath. I'm not a fan of "I hate you.... Please don't Leave me" romances. Matter of fact that is the title of a book on Boarderline Personality Disorder. Drawing any connections there?

I am fairly alone in my average rating of this book by the way. Several others have found it to be stunning and a favorite. I just wasn't blown away by it. I will try the second book in the series though. I firmly believe in giving a fair chance to every author.