Back to Old School, Dueling Review, Rant, Recommended Read

Back to Old School: Hottie McScottie Week

The Black Lyon by Jude Deveraux (1980)

Heat Factor: It slipped in. Consent optional. Do you need consent if you’re married?

Character Chemistry: He is large, grumpy and swarthy, and she is fair, smol and pure. How can they not fall in love?

Plot: One damn thing after the next, caused by miscommunication and stupidity.

Overall: They’re mad at each other, but they don’t know why they’re mad at each other, and they won’t stop doing dumb things to each other.


versus


The Bride by Julie Garwood (1989)

Heat Factor: It’s the sexiest one we’ve read so far in the Old School read-a-thon

Character Chemistry: It’s The Taming of the Shrew, but who’s taming who?

Plot: Jamie’s like, “You told me to handle it! So I handled it.”

Overall: This book is absolutely delightful.


Content Note: These books contain rape, ablism, and racism and we discuss this content in our review. Also, sorry, Ranulf of The Black Lyon is not actually a Hottie McScottie, but he’s got highlander energy.

Continue reading “Back to Old School: Hottie McScottie Week”
Series Review

Series Review: The Princess Shanyin Saga by Liliana Lee (2014)

Heat Factor: These books go on the Erotica shelf

Character Chemistry: There’s a cosmic connection, but I don’t always buy it

Plot: Princess Shanyin gets a hot young lord sent to her harem. Power plays (and lots of sex) ensue

Overall: If you’re looking for high-brow reverse-harem erotica with bonus disturbing political machinations set in 5th century China, The Obsession is excellent. If you want the HEA, read the full series—but note that The Enslavement and The Fulfillment are less tightly written.

Continue reading “Series Review: The Princess Shanyin Saga by Liliana Lee (2014)”
Recommended Read, Review

Review: My Fair Concubine by Jeannie Lin (2012)

Heat Factor: There is some sex at the end, but I frankly think that the book would have been better without it. (SHOCKING!) Not because it wasn’t hot, but because the pining was so much hotter. 

Character Chemistry: Oh, the pining. 

Plot: Fei Long’s sister was supposed to be a peace bride, but ran away instead. To save the family honor (and the peace agreement), Fei Long decides he’s going to pass off a teahouse girl as his sister. 

Overall: The first half is slow, but the tension builds and builds and I really didn’t know how they were going to get out of their predicament.

Continue reading “Review: My Fair Concubine by Jeannie Lin (2012)”
Review

Review: Winter’s Heat by Denise Domning (1994)

The Graistan Chronicles, Book #1

Heat Factor: Sex happens early, but not often.

Character Chemistry: They are the worst communicators. Also he doesn’t respect her. 

Plot: Rowena is married off to Rannulf, and decides to make the best of it. Plus there’s a lot of drama with her inheritance and the Evil Other Woman. 

Overall: This was an interesting read when approached as an artifact of romance written in the 1990s, but it didn’t make my heart go pitter-pat.

Continue reading “Review: Winter’s Heat by Denise Domning (1994)”
Recommended Read, Review

Review: The Sword Dancer by Jeannie Lin (2013)

Tang Dynasty, Book #4

Heat Factor: A bit of sizzle.

Character Chemistry: Literal sparring partners. Like, with swords. 

Plot: Le Fing is a bandit. Han is a thief-catcher. He’s chasing her around China after she was maybe involved in stealing some jade. Then they team up because there is something bigger afoot. 

Overall: I gobbled this one up. Nom nom nom.

Continue reading “Review: The Sword Dancer by Jeannie Lin (2013)”