Sex Lounge (Aphrodisia) by Rachelle Chase is up first. Nichole Simms has been lusting after Derek Mitchell for ages, even keeping a notebook full of erotic fantasies written about him. But he's a client of her employer, so it would be inappropriate for her to act on those fantasies. Not to mention that he's way out of her league. But then Derek finds her book and lets her know he's willing to act out a few of those fantasies. This one seemed as if it would have done better in the shorter novella format. It's light on actual story and conflict, though the steamy sex doesn't suffer from the longer format. It just felt stretched very, very thin. Not a keeper for me at all, I'm afraid.
Bad as She Wants to Be (Pocket) by Thea Devine is next. I'll say right up front, this one is much more erotica than romance, but if you're a Devine fan, you'll know to expect that. Frankie Luttrell never expected to be swept into the world of the rich and reckless, but when she saves Marianne Nyland, that's just what happens. She also falls hard for Dax Cordrey, but Marianne has dibs on the rich hunk. Frankie's life is completely turned upside down by her brush with this other world, and then again when Marianne insists that Frankie come to live with her several years later. Instead of the life of a poor college intern, she's rushing from sexy party to sexy party with this wild new group of friends. This one is hot, filled with plenty of indiscriminate sex and emotional encounters between Frankie and Dax. Thea Devine is really a master (or perhaps I should say mistress?) of the genre. This one's getting three and a half arrows.
Sun, Sand, Sex (Brava) has stories from Linda Lael Miller, Jennifer Apodaca, and Shelly Laurenston. Miller's 'One Last Weekend' has Joanna and Teague Darby on the verge of divorce after years of marriage, when their lawyer asks them to spend one last weekend together. They've never stopped loving one another, or wanting one another. So why was a divorce ever a good idea? Apodaca's 'You Give Love a Good Name' has Lexie Rollins hiding out while she writes, hiding from her demanding family. Nick Vardolous has come to collect her for a court hearing she missed, but they've run into each other before, and the attraction between them is even stronger than before. 'My Kind of Town' by Laurenston has witch Emma Lucchesi stranded in Smithville, North Carolina while Deputy Kyle Treharne tries to figure out why she's there, and what sort of monster she's looking for. My fave is the first; Miller rarely disappoints. Apodaca's was my next favorite, but I didn't care much for Laurenston's paranormal tale. The collection was fun, but, for me, only a keeper because of Linda Lael Miller. It's getting three arrows.
Until next time, happy reading!