The Pirate’s Revenge by Sarita Leone


The Pirate’s Revenge by Sarita Leone
The Lobster Cover Series
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Historical
Length: Short Story (118 pgs)
Heat Level: Sweet
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

Still grieving the loss of her father, Mary Sweet finds solace strolling the seashore at Quinn Beach. There she meets a handsome stranger who seems to share her sadness. He is utterly alone in the world, and praying to assuage his grief with this change of scenery.

Revenge is a strong motivator, especially for a man who’s been mistreated his whole life. The promise of pirate’s gold colors Henry Titchell’s view–yet not so much that he can’t see the beauty in Miss Mary Sweet. But while Henry is a stranger to Lobster Cove, he has not “stumbled” upon the place as he would have Mary believe. Instead he seeks retribution rather than rest

When Mary realizes the newcomer is not who he seems, will her heart be willing to forgive his sins?

Henry has a choice to make.

Tales of pirate treasure draw Henry to the picturesque coastal town of Lobster Cove. In the beginning, the source of Henry’s sorrow isn’t clear, but it quickly becomes apparent that he has never known a kind or gentle word. When the truth of his upbringing is finally revealed, it is heartbreaking. After Henry’s tormenters meet a fiery fate, he is finally free to make his own way in the world, and Henry decides to seek out a fortune. However, the people of Lobster Cove aren’t what he expected, and Henry certainly never anticipated meeting Mary. Will he pursue the gold or Mary’s heart? I eagerly anticipated learning the answer.

The romance between Henry and Mary is sweet. They are both wounded and seek to find peace on the beach. Instead, they find each other. I enjoyed watching Mary and Henry get to know each other. Their talks on the beach are lovely, and it is clear they will make a great couple. The only obstacle to their happy ending is Henry’s inner turmoil and his belief that he is unworthy of love and kindness. Mary is smart, and she can tell he’s hiding something. Mary has never given Henry a reason to doubt her sincerity. As I read, I wondered if he’d ever find the courage to tell her the truth.

Lobster Cove is the perfect place for Henry to heal his battered soul. The people there are generally kind. There are a few suspicious folks, but nothing serious enough to put Henry in any real danger. As Henry began to realize he could build a life in Lobster Cove, I liked watching Henry’s eyes open to a new life filled with possibility.

Reading The Pirate’s Revenge was very enjoyable. I liked Henry and Mary very much and had fun following their budding romance. Fans of sweet historical romance should give this book a try.

The Mermaid and the Murders by Rachel Graves


The Mermaid and the Murders by Rachel Graves
The Monster Beach Series
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Paranormal
Length: Full Length (275 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

Teenage mermaid Danika DelMar loves high school more than anything in the ocean. She fights with her mother about joining their pod, but she fights her hormones even more. No matter what her body says, she’s not ready to kill someone with sex. Things get harder when Danika falls for a new boy at school. He claims to be a sea creature like she is, but she isn’t sure she can trust him or herself.

When a dead body shows up at Danika’s reef she risks giving away her secret to make sure the police find the victim. It doesn’t stop the bodies from coming. Soon she’s lost her friend and the first boy she ever loved. Danika is sure a sea creature is involved, and she’s the only one who can help. As her friends become targets, Danika races to find the killer.

Is the ocean safe for anyone?

Danika leads a difficult life. While she loves high school and learning, she’s terrified that others will discover that she’s a mermaid. Danika is part of the popular crowd at school, but her relationship with her friends is confusing and dysfunctional at best. Danika thinks that remaining part of the crowd is the best way to hide her secret, but she is clearly miserable. I felt that she would have been better off finding friends she could actually trust. However, I will say that by the end of the story, I saw many positive changes in Danika’s relationship with her friends.

Danika should feel at home in the ocean, but she doesn’t quite fit in there either. She’s been resistant to learning about life as a mermaid for as long as she can remember. Her pod’s casual disregard for human life frightens Danika even as her hormones and curiosity drive her to learn more about the mermaid way of life. When the bodies of a few humans and a mermaid appear in the ocean next to her reef, Danika knows she has to find the culprit before she becomes the next victim.

Danika’s relationship with Sam is definitely a bright spot in this mystery. The attraction between them is apparent from the start, and I could tell they would be a cute couple. However, I think they fall in love and move into a serious physical relationship too quickly. Also, Sam tells Danika that he is a salt golem almost immediately after meeting her. I’m not sure why he chose to reveal his secret so soon and would have liked some insight into his thought process. Could he somehow sense that Danika was different too, or was he just tired of hiding?

One of the things that drew me to this book was that it was about mermaids. I know a little bit about them, but not much, so my curiosity was piqued. I found the beginning of the story a little frustrating because very little is explained about mermaid life and how things work. In fact, Danika doesn’t seem to know much either, which I find a bit unrealistic. I know that Danika relishes her life on land, but I would think that for her own survival she’d want to know more about what she is.

Overall, I liked The Mermaid and the Murders. I enjoyed learning about mermaids and the mystery surrounding the murders was wrapped up in a satisfying way. I recommend this tale to anyone looking for a romance filled with unique creatures.

A Bodyguard of Lies by Donna Del Oro


A Bodyguard of Lies by Donna Del Oro
The Jake Bernstein FBI Series Volume 1
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (453 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

FBI agent Jake Bernstein goes undercover to investigate an American grandmother suspected of war crimes during World War II. Jake runs into complications when his growing attraction to the woman’s granddaughter challenges his obligation to remain emotionally detached. As the investigation intensifies, a neo-Nazi group tries to prevent him from learning the truth as Jake struggles to stay alive long enough to either prove the woman’s guilt or exonerate her.
Despite Meg Larsen’s mounting passion for the handsome stranger, she suspects he is not who he claims to be and strives to protect her elderly grandmother. Eventually, Meg is forced to trust a man who has become both their nemesis and bodyguard.

Jake was itching to get out of the office. He might not live long enough to regret that decision.

Jake is very good at his job. He’s smart, attractive, and he has certain skills that make him a valuable undercover agent, especially when women are concerned. The assignment sounded simple enough, but the deeper he digs, the more complicated the task becomes. Jake becomes convinced he isn’t being told everything. Will he discover the truth before it is too late?

Jake strikes me as a man who has reached a point in his life where he is ready for a change, but hasn’t quite figured out what exactly he wants. All that changes when he meets Meg. Suddenly Jake finds himself wanting a more serious relationship. Unfortunately, the timing couldn’t have been worse. Jake tries to keep his personal feelings in check, but he simply can’t help falling for Meg. Jake and Meg are well suited for each other, and I liked watching them get to know each other even though it was bittersweet. I knew he’d eventually have to tell her the truth, and I wasn’t sure their budding romance would survive. I do admire Jake for trying to be as honest possible with Meg. He gently leads her to the truth, never forcing anything on her. She is a smart woman and he knows she’ll eventually put all the pieces together and discover the truth about her grandmother.

Mary, Meg’s grandmother, is a very well rounded villain. I really enjoyed the chapters the covered her past and activities during WWII. It gave context and depth to her that really made her come to life in my mind. It would be easy to write Mary off as nothing more than an evil Nazi spy, but like all well-developed characters, she is a blend of good and bad. She did some horrible things, but also some very good things. I don’t like her, the choices she made, or the things she stood for, but she is also human. She cared deeply for her family, and she raised Meg in a very loving home.

I must admit that I wasn’t completely satisfied with the ending. I was convinced that Jake wanted something permanent with Meg. I hoped for a very happy ending for the couple, but was disappointed. I know that Jake and Meg care for each other. I can only hope that Jake and Meg find a way to a happier ending in the next book of the series.

I truly enjoyed reading A Bodyguard of Lies. The characters were intriguing, and the plot was well paced and exciting. I highly recommend A Bodyguard of Lies to anyone who enjoys romantic suspense.

Spirit Ridge by L. A. Kelley


Spirit Ridge by L. A. Kelley
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Historical, Paranormal
Length: Full Length (318 pgs)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

A dark shadow rises.

San Francisco in 1885 was a dangerous place for those who crossed Colin Doyle. To Nob Hill elite he was a successful businessman. To the underbelly of San Francisco he was The Mick, a criminal mastermind ruling from the shadows. If a buyer’s tastes ran to opium, a whore, or a politician, The Mick could name a price. No one who betrayed him ever escaped the city alive.

Until now.

Nell Bishop is a fearless investigative reporter for the San Francisco Dispatch. She’s on the run to the Arizona Territory with the one witness who can expose Doyle’s corrupt empire and stop the plan to extend his evil dominion to the West.

Marshal Sam Tanner of Spirit Ridge in the Arizona Territory fought the visions sent by his Apache blood. They always foretold a death he couldn’t prevent. Then Sam dreamed of the coyote with golden brown eyes who warned of a black shadow spreading evil across the land. Did the message call him to help the beautiful woman who stepped off the stagecoach? Can Sam and Nell elude the mysterious dark riders who dog their trail or will the next vision mean death for both of them?

Adventure, romance, humor, and the call of Apache spirits weave together a Wild West adventure where either murder or justice can come at the twitch of a trigger finger.

Nell has never been one to back down from a battle, but will her next clash cost her life?

I liked Nell from the moment I started reading. She’s feisty, smart, compassionate, and resourceful. Nell is an extraordinary woman forging a unique path for herself in life as she uses her position as a reporter to expose criminals and those who take advantage of others. Unfortunately, Nell’s latest target, businessman Colin Doyle, might be her last. His scheme is far more nefarious than Nell ever imagined, and Doyle has the resources to pull it off.

As Nell pursues Doyle, her path becomes tangled with Sam’s. Their attraction to each other is clear right from the start despite Nell’s unusual disguise. They work very well together and it immediately became clear to me that they would make a great couple. Nell and Sam find themselves in some pretty dangerous and intense situations, but when Sam has a quiet moment with Nell, he lays his feelings out in the open immediately. However, Nell isn’t quite ready to surrender her heart for fear of losing her identity and independence. Sam proves himself to be a true hero in that moment. He makes his feelings plain, but gives Nell the time and space to make her own decision. Even as Nell tries to push Sam away, it was clear to me that this couple was destined to be together, even if they need a bit of a push from the spirits that guide Sam to make it happen.

Ms. Kelley has a great sense of humor that shines through in the dialogue of various characters, particularly Daisy, a delightful secondary character well on her way to becoming Nell’s best friend. Daisy’s colorful interjections are always good for a laugh.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Spirit Ridge. Nell and Sam are wonderful characters, and I’m glad I had the opportunity to follow them on their adventures. Fans of historical romance will certainly want to pick up a copy of this fast paced romance today.

Wild Goose Chase by Jan Romes


Wild Goose Chase by Jan Romes
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (269 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

Olivia Pence has been a word-nerd and all-around geek forever, which didn’t exactly win her a ton of friends growing up. It did, however, snag the attention of a like-minded geek, Dezz Casey. Instead of becoming fast friends, Dezz became a competitive thorn. The rivalry continued through grade school, high school, college, and now as co-workers for Brilliance magazine.

The most annoying thing – Dezz went from being a homely dork to six-feet-three-inches of hotness that infuriates Olivia to the point of madness. Their boss has had her fill of the chaos and orders a two-week cooling-off period where they’re to travel (separately) and find serendipitous situations to write about.

Will the time away fix their work issues and their hearts? Or will it amount to a wild goose chase that drives them farther apart?

Will Olivia and Dezz finally figure out what their families have known for years?

Olivia and Dezz’s “relationship” has spanned decades. I couldn’t help but laugh out loud at some of the situations they find themselves in. Through all their ups and downs, they refuse to acknowledge what everyone else already knows. Olivia and Dezz are in love. Unfortunately, neither of them know to express their feelings in a healthy, adult way. The friction between them is evident from the very first page. Consequently, their battles have become increasingly epic and both Olivia and Dezz are at a breaking point. Will they open up to each other, or let their road trip take them in separate directions?

I can’t believe Olivia and Dezz have fought with each other for so long. They have great chemistry underneath the intense conflict they generate. While it was entertaining to watch them pick at each other, it was also bittersweet, especially when they reminisced about the past. Each memory pinpointed a missed opportunity to change the dynamic of their relationship. Neither one seemed to know when to stop, especially Dezz. There were so many times Olivia showed a softer side and instead of responding in kind, he chose a sharp jab. When Dezz finally begins to understand how much time he’s wasted, he makes a desperate play for Olivia’s heart, but is it too late?

While I enjoyed watching Olivia and Dezz spar, I feel that it was drawn out too long. The whole book was about them trying to find a different way of life, preferably together, and it almost happened several times. Unfortunately, something always happened to keep them apart and then either Olivia or Dezz would lose their nerve and walk away convinced they didn’t belong together. This generated a lot of interesting tension, but it became a bit much after a while. I won’t spoil the story with too many details, but I will say that there is a point when they find their way to each other again and they seem set for a happy ending. After everything they’ve been through, all the confessions, and all the revelations, the moment finally seems right for a total reconciliation, but everything falls apart again. It was very disappointing to build up to what could have been a happy moment only to have it snatched away yet again. It was just one time too many for me.

Despite this issue, I am pleased to report that this strange couple does eventually find their way to a happy and satisfying ending. Readers definitely need to have patience when following the misadventures of Olivia and Dezz. I’m sure their future will be interesting to say the least.

I enjoyed reading Wild Goose Chase. Olivia and Dezz are well rounded characters and their relationship is undoubtedly intriguing. Readers looking for a book with a couple on a difficult road to romance will certainly want to give Wild Goose Chase a try.

Love Supernaturally by Charlotte Copper


Love Supernaturally by Charlotte Copper
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal, Holiday
Length: Short Story (74 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

Cassandra Wilson, angel and first-year nurse, spends her days helping other people. Day after day. Life after life. While her best friend feels the young nurse needs a little love in her life, Cassie avoids serious relationships. She saw what her mother went through, and unless Cassie can find another angel to spend her life with, love and a family are not in her future.

An innocent night out with Fraser, a university junior and varsity hockey player, leads to something more serious and Cassie begins to experience feelings she’s been trying to avoid. But the sudden discovery—by both herself and Fraser—that Fraser is a witch, combined with his need to please everyone around him, poses a challenge to the couple’s happily ever after.

Romance is not part of Cassie’s plan.

Cassie has no intention of getting into a serious relationship unless she finds another angel. Cassie believes her mother’s union with a human and her birth were the root of the depression that consumed her mother. It is a heavy burden to carry. As I read, I wondered if there were other angels Cassie could talk to. She knew there were angels working in the hospital. Could she have asked them about her mother’s experience? Cassie has convinced herself that she is content with the life she’s chosen, but I wasn’t so sure. She’s an intelligent, sweet young woman, but she seemed sad to me. Will Cassie’s ban on romance do more damage than good?

I liked Fraser immediately. He’s friendly, caring, and handsome, and he wiggles his way into Cassie’s heart before she knows what’s happening. Fraser and Cassie have the potential to be a great couple. When Cassie figures out that Fraser is a witch, he doesn’t take the news well and their budding romance is derailed. Fraser doesn’t automatically accept everything Cassie tells him. His entire world has changed, and he needs time to process that. I find that very realistic. When Fraser’s world is rocked by another change, will he and Cassie find strength in each other, or let their chance at love slip away?

I would really like to know more about Cassie and Fraser’s world and the rules that govern it. Are there lots of angels and witches or are they rare? Do angels and witches cooperate with each other often? Are there other supernatural creatures? What sort of training do angels and witches go through as they learn to control their powers? While Ms. Copper provides enough information to make this story satisfying, I felt like I’d just skimmed the surface, and I was left wanting to know more.

I’m glad I had the opportunity to read Love Supernaturally. It is a fun and quick story sure to delight romance fans.

Love and the Pursuit of Law by C.K. Charlotte


Love and the Pursuit of Law by C.K. Charlotte
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Historical, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Short Story (94 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

Ivy Smythe is one of the first women admitted to practice law in England. Intelligent and independent, she hopes to work for women’s rights and defend those less fortunate. She is shocked when her law partner father insists she defend a young aristocrat accused of murdering a prostitute.

The Honorable Bryan Henderson is the son of a baron and a member of the Society of Bright Young People. His privileged life of wild parties is threatened by the death of his older brother and the discovery of a corpse at his family’s estate. The last thing he needs is a lady barrister!

While Bryan attempts to show Ivy who has the power in their relationship, Ivy struggles with her conflicting roles of barrister and attractive young woman. Together they experience the excitement of London’s Jazz Age and a growing attraction neither can deny.

Ivy’s first client is far from desirable.

Ivy has worked very hard to become and woman barrister, and she has lofty goals about the type of clients she’d like to represent. When her father insists that she take Bryan’s case, she is anything but pleased. Bryan doesn’t seem to take anything seriously, including the suspicions of murder. Can Ivy get him to see the gravity of the situation before it is too late?

Ivy is a very intelligent and pioneering spirit. She’s had to work extremely hard to achieve her goal of being a barrister, especially at this time in history. Her passion for the law and the work she does shines through in her conversations with others. Despite her zeal for her career, Ivy doesn’t command much respect. She keeps insisting she’s a barrister, but when the situation begins to feel hopeless, Ivy wilts and the glimmers of her new-found confidence fade away. She gets pushed around and distracted quite a bit by the men in her life throughout the story, especially by Bryan. She can’t be blamed for falling in love, and I understand that Ivy would want to relax and have some fun after leading very serious life. However, Bryan is suspected of murder, and I felt that she needed to be more forceful in making Bryan see how serious the situation was.

Bryan made an interesting hero. He seems like a typical playboy at first, and he sets out to distract Ivy from her purpose by dragging her to multiple parties. However, I do see quite a bit of change in Bryan as the story progresses. Underneath Bryan’s flippant exterior lies a more serious man who is masking his pain by playing a role. I think his character had more potential that I would have liked to explore in greater depth.

I enjoyed reading Love and the Pursuit of Law. It is a quick and entertaining read easily read in one sitting. Readers looking to take a spin through the Jazz Age might want give this romance a try.

Knights of Stone: Bryce by Lisa Carlisle

stone
Knights of Stone: Bryce by Lisa Carlisle
Highland Gargoyles Book 3
Publisher: Self-Published
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (114 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

What happens when love interferes with plans, during the most unfortunate of times?

Gargoyle shifter, and the last of her clan, Mairi, is running for her life, desperate to keep hidden. When she spots two winged creatures flying high above her in the Highlands of Scotland, she momentarily panics, thinking they’re the same beasts who murdered her family along with her entire clan. Realizing they’re gargoyles like her, she takes flight and discreetly follows them to an island.

Bryce, beta of his clan and drummer for the Knights of Stone, senses something is amiss on the Isle of Stone. At first, he believes he’s merely discomfited by the rumors of atrocities occurring in the Highlands. However, he discovers an intruder on the magically-concealed island home. Once he ascertains that the flame-haired beauty is the sole survivor of a traumatizing attack, he returns to the Highlands to warn his former clan.

Somewhere between cautioning the clan and realizing the necessity of destroying the beasts that threaten them all, Mairi and Bryce discover an attraction that quickly evolves into a consuming passion. A problem even greater than the murderous fiends becomes apparent – the love they share may not survive the battle.

Love finds Mairi just as her world is falling apart.

Mairi has just survived an attack from creatures straight out of her worst nightmares, but she’s smart and survived against the odds. After meeting Bryce and his brothers, she manages to secure their help in order to avenge the death of her clan. Mairi’s courage is amazing. Even after all the trauma she has suffered, she’s still determined to face the enemy and even plays a key part in drawing them out. Mairi does make an extremely rash decision in battle that puts her and Bryce in danger, but after all she’s been through, I can understand her emotions getting the best of her at such and intense moment.

Mairi and Bryce fall in love hard and fast. I must say that it takes a talented author to make this sort of thing work, and Ms. Carlisle has certainly pulled it off in this story. Mairi and Bryce have excellent chemistry and the sex scenes are scorching. I could easily picture them as a powerful couple and felt very secure in how their relationship was progressing until after the big battle when Bryce makes a decision that jeopardizes everything. It is easy to sit back and say that Bryce was being stupid, but whenI took a moment to think about Bryce’s past and the short amount of time he and Mairi had known each other, I could understand why he did it, even if I completely disagree with him. Will Bryce and Mairi’s romance survive his decision?

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Knights of Stone: Bryce. This tale is part of a series, but it stands alone very well. Ms. Carlisle explains any pertinent background information succinctly. I was never lost and the flow of the story was never interrupted. The pacing is great, and I was so wrapped up in their story that I read the entire book in one sitting. I recommend fans of paranormal romance pick up a copy of Knights of Stone: Bryce today.

The Forgotten Debutante by Becky Lower

forgotten
The Forgotten Debutante by Becky Lower
Cotillion Ball #9
Publisher: Crimson Romance
Genre: Historical
Length: Short Story (126 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

In 1863, America is war-weary. Fifteen-year-old Saffron Fitzpatrick, whose teenage years have been spent mourning the dead rather than dancing at her debutante ball, just wants to visit her beloved horse after being housebound due to the draft riots. A chance meeting with soldier Ezekiel Boone changes everything.

Three years ago, Ezekiel ran away with his older brothers to join the war effort, welcoming the chance for adventure. But when all four of his brothers die at Chancellorsville, he retreats home, despondent and depending on the kindness of strangers, like Saffron, who help him on the journey. They share a wild ride and a breathless kiss, parting with fond memories.

Fate reunites the couple three years later, and their former attraction rekindles as they discover unexpected common ground and begin to build a relationship. But though the war is over, a future together may still elude them … especially if Saffron’s older, protective brother and the U.S. Army have anything to say about it.

The war separated Saffron and Zeke once. Will the army tear them apart a second time?

Saffron and Zeke meet under unusual circumstances, and their emotions lead them into sharing an innocent yet intense first kiss that neither of them forgot. Three years later they find themselves face to face again. While they’ve both reminisced about that kiss, they don’t really know much about each other. Will reality be able to live up to their dreams?

I must admit that I have mixed feelings about Saffron. While it is clear she has a good heart, I think she has a lot of growing up to do. She strikes me as childish despite her insistence on being treated as an adult. One passage describes her “stamping her slippered foot.” This action is more suited to a child throwing a tantrum rather than a young woman. I also wanted more emotional depth from Saffron. The Civil War was extremely brutal and Saffron and Zeke are tasked with digging up the remains of soldiers and bringing them back to be buried in cemeteries. This would have been a particularly gruesome undertaking, but Saffron doesn’t seem to be affected by it, or at least there is no evidence of it as I read. Despite these issues, I am happy to say that by the end of the story, I saw glimmers of the mature woman Saffron has the potential to become. I can’t give details without spoiling the story, but I will say that Saffron supports Zeke in two particularly difficult circumstances.

Zeke is an easy hero to warm up to. He in kind, generous, and always willing to help. He shoulders immense responsibility at a young age. When his brothers die, he returns to the family farm even though he never imagined himself farming for the rest of his life. He does it because his family needs him. Zeke is certainly an admirable young man.

While I believe that Zeke and Saffron have the potential to be a great couple, their relationship never really flared to life for me. Again, I must cite Saffron’s immaturity as the chief obstacle in my mind. Zeke is more rounded and has much more emotional depth. When I compare him to Saffron and her somewhat spoiled attitude, I have a hard time picturing them as a truly compatible couple. However, I will say that Saffron is determined to prove her love for Zeke and she does this by fiercely supporting him when a weaker woman would have deserted him. I believe in time that they will grow into a strong couple.

The Forgotten Debutante is a good book. Zeke and Saffron are sweet and their happy ending is certainly deserved. While this story is the ninth in a series, it stands alone well as Ms. Lower explains everything very clearly. Fans of historical romance might want to give The Forgotten Debutante a try.

Pandora’s Passion by Amy Hahn

PASSION
Pandora’s Passion by Amy Hahn
Publisher: Satin Romance
Genre: Contemporary, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (46 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

Rora is the Pandora of Greek legend who released evil onto the world, but kept hopelessness from escaping. For centuries she protected The Box, but now Prometheus has appeared and issued a warning that Eris, goddess of discord, and Nemesis, god of revenge, have sent the infamous Gorgons after The Box. Seeing him again sets Rora’s emotions into a tailspin and dredges up memories of a painful and passionate past. The Titan and she share centuries of relationship baggage. And she loves him, but he’s never confessed to loving her. The tension is thick between them, the energy electric. In no time they’ve surrendered to their passion, but the arrival of the Gorgons puts them, The Box, and mankind in danger.

How much longer can Pandora bear the burden of The Box?

The story of Pandora and The Box is a familiar story from Greek mythology, but even if you haven’t read it, the history of Pandora, The Box, and Prometheus is explained very clearly. I was intrigued by the idea of Pandora living an endless life still bound to The Box. What would that kind of responsibility do to a person and the people they care about? I started reading eager to learn the answer.

Pandora, now known as Rora, has lived centuries protecting The Box from those who wish to harm humans, and now she has reached her breaking point. Prometheus is the only man Rora has ever loved, though their relationship has been tumultuous to say the least. Every time they’ve tried to make their relationship work, The Box and their history managed to drive them apart. It is a frustrating, never ending cycle, and it is easy to see why Rora is exhausted and practically ready to give up. Now Prometheus has learned of a new threat to Rora and The Box and once again they are drawn together. Rora has always loved Prometheus, but can she’s not sure he feels the same way. Does he come back for her, or The Box?

I do wish there had been more time for Rora and Prometheus to reconnect. While they have centuries of history, there weren’t many details provided to make it come alive. I truly wanted to feel the weight of Rora and Prometheus’ bond, but from the moment he walks through Rora’s door, everything happens so quickly that their relationship wasn’t as compelling as it could have been. I liked them, but when I finished reading I didn’t feel as if I truly knew them.

Prometheus makes some big decisions regarding his relationship with Rora and the path their future will take. While I have no doubt that these changes will be for the better, I was left wondering why now? This isn’t the first time they’ve found themselves in danger, so why the change or heart? Was it simply the right time, or something else? I just wish I could have had more insight into Promethus’ thought process.

Despite these issues, I had fun reading Pandora’s Passion. It is a quick, fast paced, entertaining short story that can easily be read in one sitting. I recommend this romance to anyone looking for a snapshot in the life of a passionate couple.