Listicle

Saturday Smutty Six: Old School Romances We Barely Remember

In honor of our Old School reading this month, we decided to look at our reading archives and see what turned up. Unfortunately, we read these books so long ago, we don’t remember much. Maybe we can interest you in these books based on what we do remember?

All I remember about this book is…

The Secret Pearl by Mary Balogh

Erin: …they meet when, on her first night as a (virgin) prostitute, he hires her and they have extremely uncomfortable sex in the alleyway outside a theater. Then she unexpectedly (but very luckily) gets hired as his governess. Awkwardness and angst ensues. I’m not sure if it was just the beginning, but I recall the overall mood of this one as morose.

The Pleasure Master by Nina Bangs

Holly: …it’s about a woman who gets sent back in time (by a talking toy…monkey?) to some guy who lives in a cave (not sure why) in medieval Scotland. He has sex magic. 

Prince of Dreams by Lisa Kleypas

Erin: …this exiled Russian aristocrat who is somehow related to the heroine of the first book in this duology gets the stink eye from the hero of the first book in this duology because he just knows that he’s somehow fated to be a part of that hero’s daughter’s life. Because what dad doesn’t want to hear that a grown man is fated to be with his not-yet-grown daughter? Anyway, then there’s this book where she is grown and all of that prediction of the future pulls together with, I believe I recall correctly, maximum angst. And Russian stuff.


A Pirate’s Love by Johanna Lindsey

Holly: …the “hero” tells the heroine, “Why do you keep making me rape you?” Also a bunch of pirate stuff.

Something Wonderful by Judith McNaught 

Erin: …they’re not really equals because she’s a country gentlewoman and he’s a duke, but he’s taken by her when they meet and marries her out of hand. Then on their way from the wedding to his estate, he is kidnapped and shipped off to parts unknown while she is left a naive widow at the mercy of people she doesn’t really know, unaware that they may not be acting in the best interests of either her or the lost duke. Needless to say, when the duke gets home, he’s really mad. 

A Night to Surrender by Tessa Dare

Holly: …this is the first Spindle Cove book, and it’s all about a battle of the sexes. And there’s a literal battle? With cannons? 

Dueling Review

Dueling Review: Beauty and the Blacksmith by Tessa Dare (2013)

This month, our theme week—inspired by SuperWendy’s TBR Challenge—was the Blue Collar archetype. What could be better than a cross-class blacksmith romance?

Spindle Cove, #3.5

Holly’s Take

Heat Factor: He gets her all dirty

Character Chemistry: They’ve been pining from afar for a while and are finally ready to admit their feelings

Plot: Let’s try this courtship thang!

Overall: There are a couple of really standout scenes

Ingrid’s Take

Heat Factor: I mean, it opens with her admiring the size of his………………wrists. And it ends with zero doubt some dirty stuff went down. 

Character Chemistry: There’s heavy longing suggested, but things get cooking right away, which is nice for us.

Plot: They want each other, but can they HAVE each other?

Overall: It’s really cute and I can tell this is one that will stick in my memory if not just because there are some very memorable (and unique!) moments.

Erin’s Take

Heat Factor: It’s a novella, so there’s a lot of desiring from afar but only the one fateful night 

Character Chemistry: There are some undercurrents between Diana and Aaron earlier in the series, so this book involves a good deal of pining followed by taking action

Plot: Diana and Aaron finally decide to stop dancing around each other and see if their feelings can overcome their class divide

Overall: I enjoyed it more the first time I read it years ago, but it’s still well-constructed and charming if you don’t mind some dated ideas

Continue reading “Dueling Review: Beauty and the Blacksmith by Tessa Dare (2013)”
Review

Review: Goddess of the Hunt by Tessa Dare (2009)

The Wanton Dairymaid Trilogy, Book #1

Heat Factor: The wardrobe scene is incendiary

Character Chemistry: I am so in love with you, don’t even try to talk sense to me. In fact, we don’t need to talk at all. 

Plot: Best Friend’s Sibling → Sexytimes → Seducing My Spouse

Overall: The first half is EVERYTHING. Then they get married, and I want to smash their heads together.

Continue reading “Review: Goddess of the Hunt by Tessa Dare (2009)”
Review

Review: His Bride for the Taking by Tessa Dare (2019)

Heat Factor: PG-13…mostly

Character Chemistry: good enough to scratch the friends to lovers itch

Plot: Navigating a marriage of convenience between friends who are also secretly in love

Overall: a fluffy, fun read

Continue reading “Review: His Bride for the Taking by Tessa Dare (2019)”