Wild, Wild Women of the West (Aphrodisia) is up first and has stories by Delilah Devlin, Layla Chase, and Myla Jackson. Devlin's 'A Taste of Honey' has Honey Cafferty and Sheriff Joe Tanner going toe to toe over whether Honey and her wagon of potions can stay in town or not. Any guesses who wins that battle? Chase's 'Queen of Hearts' pits Roark Sheridan against Lissa Tayte in a poker game or two over the ownership of his riverboat. Strip poker, anyone? And 'Touch of Magic' by Jackson has Caterina using her hypnotic powers to bring Trace Adams to her bed, but only for one night. At least, that was the plan. This collection is just right when you want something quick and light to read, when you're interested in more steam than substance in the tale. Nothing here is a keeper for me, but it's earned three of Cupid's five arrows by virtue of having these three spicy reads.
A Dangerous Woman (Genesis) by J. M. Jeffries is next. CIA assassin Odessa Ripley is on enforced holiday leave from her job, but her vacation turns into a case when she discovers a clue her late father left her, a clue that will lead her to his killers. But Detective Wyatt Whitaker is in her way and determined to play by the rules. And just as determined to get Odessa into his bed. This one will suck you right in, with a complicated, tough heroine who's got more to her than you might think at first glance, and a hero who could be a knight on a white horse in any time period. You'll also get to revisit some characters from previous tales, and, while that's nice, the focus is always on Odessa and Wyatt, right where it should be. Nor does the mystery aspect take away from the romance. This one's getting four arrows.
Blood Seduction (Genesis), also by J. M. Jeffries is up last with the next in their vampire romances. Major Ursula Carlson wasn't thrilled the first time she worked with the vampires, but by now, she and her special unit made up of vampires and military personnel work well together. Except now her superior officers want her to eliminate them. Permanently. Even if she wasn't a little hung up on Solomon, Ursula knows right from wrong, though she didn't always stay on the right side of the line in her past. Now she's about to throw away her career to save the people she's come to respect, and Solomon is going to make sure she stays safe as well. Just as in their previous vampire story, the ladies who write as J. M. Jeffries don't make this all about the big, dark, tortured vampire, but about the man and woman the story is about, which makes this one a fabulous example of good romance. Sure, each of them has things that get in the way of their reaching a happy ending, but none of it is drawn out too long, or too far to keep believing in the characters and the story. Very nicely done, this one also gets four arrows.
Until next time, happy reading!