Dueling Review, Recommended Read

Dueling Review: Big Bad Cowboy by Carly Bloom (2018)

Once Upon a Time in Texas, Book #1

Holly’s Take

Heat Factor: I found the sexting shockingly effective

Character Chemistry: Maggie is in lust with the Big Bad Wolf, and moving from animosity to friendship to love with Travis. Except they’re the same man—and she doesn’t know it.

Plot: Maggie and Travis have mindblowing, slightly kinky sex as anonymous strangers at a costume party. And then Travis discovers that they’re neighbors slash she thinks he’s destroying her business. Too bad the sexting is so fun.

Overall: There were a few rough patches at the beginning, but I ended up really enjoying it.

Ingrid’s Take

Heat Factor: I’d definitely say it borders on a slow burn IF you don’t take the sexting into consideration.

Character Chemistry: There are a lot of relationships going on and they all had pretty good chemistry. Maggie and Travis seemed to sync really well.

Plot: Maggie and Travis hook up in disguise at a costume party—Travis knows Maggie’s identity, but Maggie is in the dark. When they end up at odds as neighbors and work competitors, they end up finding a deeper connection.

Overall: It was a cute cowboy-to-be book that felt realistically small-town.

Erin’s Take

Heat Factor: It starts early and doesn’t really slow down if you count all the sexting, but I wanted the story to get on with it because all the character interactions were more fun

Character Chemistry: I was more invested in the all the dynamics of the small town characters than in the romantic relationship between Maggie and Travis

Plot: business competitors, antagonistic anonymous neighbors, anonymous hookup, forced to work the same contract, sexting deception, custody battles, and liens

Overall: If we hadn’t agreed to buddy read it, I probably would have DNFed by 25% simply for all the gender essentialism, BUT I think it was maybe Trying To Do Something, and, as Holly said, it turned out pretty cute in the end.

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Review

Review: When a Rogue Meets His Match by Elizabeth Hoyt (2020)

Greycourt, Book #2

Review of Greycourt, Book #1

Heat Factor: Above average historical romance sexyness

Character Chemistry: He’s smitten, she loathes him

Plot: Messalina is forced into marriage with her evil uncle’s fixer

Overall: I gobbled this up, but must admit that the resolution was rushed

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Review

Review: So This Is Christmas by Jenny Holiday (2022)

A Princess for Christmas, Book #3

Review of A Princess for Christmas Book #1, Book #2

Heat Factor: Two encounters toward the end of the book

Character Chemistry: Two obviously compatible people working against each other because of external circumstances 

Plot: Modernization vs tradition, fought out against a backdrop of twee mountain villages.

Overall: Do you like competence porn? If so, this is the book for you

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Recommended Read, Review

Review: Enemies with Benefits by Roxie Noir (2019)

Loveless Brothers, Book #1

Review of Loveless Brothers, Book #3

Heat Factor: Once they get going, boy do they go

Character Chemistry: That thing where they argue all the time but their competition also pushes them both to do and be better

Plot: “I definitely don’t think he’s attractive.”

“I definitely don’t want to kiss her.”

“We’re definitely not having sex.”

“He’s definitely not my boyfriend.”

“I’m definitely not in love with her.”

“Nope. Definitely not.”

Overall: Did I immediately read Book #2 in the series? Yes, yes I did.

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Review

Review: Stronger Than Passion by Katherine McIntyre (2022)

Chesapeake Days, Book #2

Review of Chesapeake Days, Book #1

Heat Factor: 🍆🍆🍆

Character Chemistry: Let’s just say that I completely understand the bickering as a love language

Plot: Hudson and Nico hate each other’s guts and own rival restaurants, which makes it really challenging when they have to work together on a food and drinks collab for the hometown summer festival

Overall: If you’re at all interested in a charming small town romance between antagonistically rival restaurateurs who are positively thirsty for each other, look no further

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