Posted in Books

Heating Up the Holidays – Loveswept Bundle

I think in my last review I mentioned my growing love for Loveswept. Well… it just grew a little more.


Heating Up the Holidays – A Loveswept Bundle

As leftover turkey and stuffing give way to stockings and little black dresses, this tantalizingly sexy eBook bundle offers up holiday-themed novellas from a trio of beloved romance authors. Lisa Renee Jones gives a dedicated reporter and a powerful businessman a chance to count their Thanksgiving blessings in Play with Me; Mary Ann Rivers presents Snowfall, the story of a woman who confronts a life-changing event—hopefully with a special man by her side—just in time for Christmas; and in Serena Bell’s After Midnight, an explosive New Year’s kiss leaves two strangers wondering whether they’ll ever see each other again.

PLAY WITH ME by Lisa Renée Jones

Kali Miller has spent three years reporting fluff stories, waiting for the article that will launch her career to new heights. When she suddenly finds herself forced to take a job as an executive secretary at a Vegas casino, Kali meets the subject of what will surely be a shocking exposé: her boss, Damion Ward, the arrogant and undeniably sexy CEO. But after Damion invites her to help him plan a Thanksgiving charity event, Kali begins to see another side of the man. And when she surrenders to the exhilarating tension simmering between them, Kali hopes her story will have a happy ending.

SNOWFALL by Mary Ann Rivers

Jenny Wright can’t get enough of her erotic conversations with someone she knows only as “C.” Flirting online helps Jenny temporarily escape confronting the changes to her life as she slowly loses her vision. Jenny’s occupational therapist, Evan Carlisle-Ford, is helping her prepare for the challenges ahead, but the forthright, trustworthy man can no longer ignore his growing attraction to his fiercely intelligent client. Now Jenny must choose between the safe, anonymous “C”—or the flesh-and-blood Evan, whose heated kisses can melt snow faster than it can fall.


The clock is ticking down to midnight on New Year’s Eve, and all Nora Hart and Miles Shephard can think about is kissing each other—even though they met just minutes before. Then, as fast as Miles enters Nora’s life, he’s gone . . . and she never even gets the name of the man she thinks might just be “the one.” One year later, Nora and Miles are reunited. The chemistry between them is just as strong as they remember. But Miles broke her heart once before—and this time around, Nora’s not sure whether she can give love a second chance.

Play With Me – Lisa Renée Jones

This is my introduction to Lisa Renée Jones’ writing. And I loved it!

Kali was betrayed by her father and her fiancé and decided to start fresh in Sin City. At the temp agency she is assigned to be a high profile hotel and casino chain CEO’s assistant.

Damion is a young rising star who’s managing 3 hotels in Vegas. He’s gorgeous, intimidating and demanding, and is completely smitten with Kali upon meeting her. Amidst a security issue at the firm, they get to know each other professionally and intimately, and yes – it’s steamy. Very.

I liked Kali’s attitude towards starting fresh. She isn’t hindered by the past and when facing a problem, she solves it, shakes herself up and looks forward. She also believes in herself and her professional capabilities and won’t back down when faced with a challenge from Damion.

I’ll admit, I don’t believe this situation can happen in real life, but as far as stretching reality, LRJ did a great job with two strong MCs and several appealing supporting characters. I really liked Terrance, too. He deserves a spinoff. js

My rating: 4star

Snowfall – Mary Ann Rivers

I cannot begin to express how much I love Mary Ann Rivers’ writing. When you’re hit with a story that is so unique in its concept AND its writing – bells sound.

The protagonist is a PhD microbiologist who absolutely loves the very basics of science. I have a science degree in biotechnology myself, so I’m familiar with the terms and that raw passion for all things nerdy. This might be why or part of why I felt so emotionally attached to this story, but either way, Jenny made me feel everything I’m sure Mary Ann Rivers was aiming for. Jenny Write is diagnosed with a healthy problem that gradually handicaps her and with the help of her occupational therapist is slowly and after much resistance, starts to make progress, adapt and adjust to everyday life again. She is also developing an online relationship with the previous tenant to occupy her current apartment.

Rivers uses clever analogies. I’m positive some if not most are intentional, but I have the feeling that when she writes, her whole being is immersed in the subject matter, in the world she’s creating, that some analogies just flow into the story.

Snowfall being the 2nd story I’ve read of Mary Ann’s (The Story Guy was the first and is a must read!), I almost expect her next book to be heartbreaking and hopeful. Snowfall made me tear up a lot, it’s made me giggle and swoon and feel so sad for Jenny. Addressing this difficult, possibly not so uncommon yet unexplored and undereducated publicly, in a form of a romance is amazing. And as I’ve stated before, it’s amazingly written.

At this point I have yet to read Serena Bell’s novella in this bundle, but if only for Rivers’ novella – this bundle needs to be bought and read.

My rating: 5

After Midnight – Serena Bell

OMG. My love for Serena Bell only grows from story to story of hers I’m reading.

Who doesn’t have a love/hate relationship with NYE? I sure do. And when something life changing (personally and not for the better) happens shortly before? Yuck.

That’s what happened to Miles and Nora. Each of them suffered a sort of betrayal and each of them chose to deal with it completely differently. In a chance meeting they hit it off. For 15 minutes. And then…

Nora and Miles both go through a growing process as characters, through dealing with their own personal challenge, and while it takes a long time, it’s genuine and real.

Bell’s writing is so relaxed and real, and I love the emotions she manages to carry forward through the characters.

Oh, also – and this was verified with Serena Bell herself – Miles and Nora are pure coincidence that’s completely unrelated to NBC’s Revolution. She doesn’t even watch it. LOL

My rating: 4.5star


Thank you Loveswept and NetGalley for providing this early copy in exchange for an honest review.


Pre-order links

on sale October 28th, 2013

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About the authors

Mary Ann Rivers was an English and music major and went on to earn her MFA in creative writing, publishing poetry in journals and leading creative-writing workshops for at-risk youth. While training for her day job as a nurse practitioner, she rediscovered romance on the bedside tables of her favorite patients. Now she writes smart and emotional contemporary romance, imagining stories featuring the heroes and heroines just ahead of her in the coffee line. Mary Ann Rivers lives in the Midwest with her handsome professor husband and their imaginative school-aged son.

Serena Bell writes stories about how sex messes with your head, why smart people do stupid things sometimes, and how love can make it all better. She wrote her first steamy romance before she was old enough to understand what all the words meant and has been perfecting the art of hiding pages and screens from curious eyes ever since—a skill that’s particularly useful now that she’s the mother of two school-age children.

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Lisa Renée Jones is the author of the highly acclaimed INSIDE OUT TRILOGY which has sold to more than ten countries for translation with negotiations in process for more, and has now been optioned by STARZ Network for a cable television show, to be produced by Suzanne Todd (Alice in Wonderland).

Since beginning her publishing career in 2007, Lisa has published more than 30 books with publishers such as Simon and Schuster, Avon, Kensington, Harlequin, NAL, Berkley and Elloras Cave, as well as crafting a successful indie career. Booklist says that Jones suspense truly sizzles with an energy similar to FBI tales with a paranormal twist by Julie Garwood or Suzanne Brockmann.

Prior to publishing, Lisa owned multi-state staffing agency that was recognized many times by The Austin Business Journal and also praised by Dallas Women Magazine. In 1998 LRJ was listed as the #7 growing women owned business in Entrepreneur Magazine.

Lisa loves to hear from her readers. You can reach her through her website and she is active on twitter and facebook daily.



I read, review, flail and swoon.

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