Category Archives: Kitty Kat

4 Star Review for Adieu Warm Sunshine by C.E. Case #FF @SupposedCrimes

CoverTitle:Adieu Warm Sunshine
Author Name & Publisher: C.E. Case (Supposed Crimes)
Publication Date : August 1, 2016

Synopsis

Pamela Costis is just another dancer/addict loitering at the stage door with no autographs to sign. She tells herself she’s not looking for anything, but when the black town car pulls up and reveals a tall, dark stranger, she’s intrigued enough to get closer.

Sunflower “Sunny” Darling is unmistakably a cop, except she’s really something darker, but that doesn’t matter until Pamela goes missing after their one night stand. No one else seems to have noticed.

Occam’s Razor flies in her face, but Sunny can’t accept Pamela’s disappearance as anything ordinary. She delves into the theater underworld, follows where drugs take her, but finds only dead ends.

Pamela’s true threat is inside Sunny’s own world.

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Review

FourStars

Sunny is an agent with lots of secrets and she’s certainly not sharing them with her NYPD partner.  When she meets dancer Pamela and they share a smoking hot night together she could never imagine how complicated things are about to become.  And they are certainly complicated! For the first third of the book I was unsure what I was going to make of this story but once it began to unravel I really enjoyed it and could see where C E Case was going with it.  There are a lot of very dodgy people involved and I wasn’t sure that the supposed good guys were really the good guys at all.  Sunny was so mysterious that I was never really sure who she was and Pamela was naive to the extreme.  They made a great couple though and I was really rooting for them all the way through.  Sunny was relentless in her quest and I liked that about her.  She was willing to break the rules and do whatever it took for Pamela.  There is certainly another book in this story and I hope that C E Case has plans to keep it going. It was well thought out and kept me interested, especially as things began to heat up in the last few chapters.  A good read
Kitty Kat

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5 Star and 4.5 Star Reviews for First Position by Melissa Brayden #FF #Romance @MelissaBrayden

CoverTitle: First Position
Author Name & Publisher: Melissa Brayden (Bold Strokes Books)
Publication Date & Length: August 16, 2016 – 264 pgs

Synopsis

Anastasia Mikhelson is the rising star of the New York City Ballet. She’s sacrificed creature comforts, a social life, as well as her own physical well-being for perfection in dance. Even her reputation as The Ice Queen doesn’t faze her. Though Ana’s at the peak of her career, competition from a new and noteworthy dancer puts all she’s worked for in jeopardy.

While Natalie Frederico has shown herself to be a prodigy when it comes to ballet, she much prefers modern dance and living on her own terms. Life is too short for anything else. However, when the opportunity to dance with the New York City Ballet is thrust upon her, it’s not like she could say no. Dealing with the company’s uptight lead is another story, however. When the two are forced to work side-by-side, sparks begin to fly onstage and off.

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Review
FiveStarsfinds it hard to relax and make friends. When free spirit Natalie joins the company she finds herself drawn to her and slowly begins to open up and embrace friendship. Although they are complete opposites and annoy the hell out of each other, their attraction is so strong. I loved the growing relationship between them as it brought out a different side of Ana especially. Her career was everything to her but she was so buttoned up until Natalie came along. Unforeseen circumstances force Ana to read-evaluate and her struggles were difficult for both of them. Ultimately it was a beautiful love story, with moments of real tenderness and a lot of heat. I found the ballet life really interesting and the NY setting was an exciting background to it all.
Kitty Kat

FourandHalfStars

There’s definitely something about Melissa Brayden’s books that I enjoy. This one started a bit slow, and I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to get into it. That worry disappeared around the third chapter. I was a bit worried that this book would be a big struggle between the two main characters for one position, but the turn that took was actually rather enjoyable. It created an atmosphere that engendered cooperation and support between Ana and Natalie, allowing them to grow closer. I also love those stories about a character who is emotionally isolated, who is then drawn out of her shell by our other heroine. It’s like something in Natalie allows Ana to loosen up and reach outside her comfort zone. At the same time, something about Ana pushes Natalie into growing up and realizing that she has responsibilities. Watching her move from shallow party girl who doesn’t want to sell out to someone who stays because she’s made a commitment is a wonderful story arc. The other part of the story is what happens after someone who has made their life out of their passion no longer has the ability to engage in that passion. The career-ending injury that occurs may not have been what was expected, but it’s no less devastating. The events after leave both women devastated and unsure how to move forward. It was wonderful to see how they got back to each other. I also really enjoyed seeing some of the characters from previous books; it was nice to see old friends. If you’ve liked previous Melissa Brayden books, this will be another hit for you.

AmyP

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5 Star Review for Your Name In Lights (Love’s Encore #2) by Miranda MacLeod #FF #Romance

CoverTitle: Your Name In Lights (Love’s Encore #2)
Author Name & Publisher: Miranda MacLeod (Apple Blossom Press)
Publication Date & Length: June 28, 2016 – 224 pgs

Synopsis

Your Name In Lights picks up where A Road Through Mountains ended. Minor spoilers ahead!

After eighteen years, the stars may have finally aligned to give Cecily and Rorie a second chance at happiness together. The trouble with stars, though: they don’t stay aligned for long.

As Cecily settles into her life in sunny California, she imagines her biggest challenge will be learning to navigate her new reality as a divorced mother and publicly out lesbian. The last thing she expects is to land the acting role of a lifetime, far away from the loving support of her girlfriend and teenage son.

As disappointed as Rorie is at the prospect of a long distance relationship, she can’t dwell on it for long. It’s hard enough stepping in as a surrogate parent when Cecily’s son arrives for college while she’s away. But when a woman claiming to be her long lost mother appears, and may not be all she seems, Rorie knows she needs Cecily to come home soon.

Despite time, distance, and some very persistent paparazzi, Cecily and Rorie have found in each other a love to last a lifetime, but only if they can survive the dual pressures of fame and family.

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Review
FiveStarsThis second instalment of Rorie and Cecily’s trilogy was not a disappointment . Having read the first book and loved it I had high hopes for this one.  Cecily moves
to Southern California to start a new life and be with Rorie. Her wish to learn to be independent causes a few problems for her though and she finds out its not easy living only on a pay check. Seeing how her career developed was fascinating and although it led to some separation from Rorie it was something she needed to do. The other characters around them were really well written and allowed facets of their personalities and relationship to come to the fore. I especially liked Rorie’s group of lesbian friends and their little side bets.
The love story was of course integral to the book and it was both beautiful and very sexy. I’m glad Miranda Macleod let us see that love doesn’t always run smoothly but needs work and time. Rorie’s past regarding her parents was a brilliant addition and it was at times heart- wrenching.  I was surprised at how affected I was by this part of the story.
Another winner and I can’t wait for the final instalment!
Kitty Kat

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TWO 5 Stars for Welcome to the Wallops (The Wallops #1) by Gill McKnight #FF #Romance

CoverTitle: Welcome to the Wallops (The Wallops #1)
Author Name & Publisher: Gill McKnight (Yiva Publishing)
Publication Date & Length: June 29, 2016 – 242 pgs

Synopsis

The villages of High Wallop and Lesser Wallop have graced either end of the Wallop valley since medieval times. And competition between the two has never ceased since, especially over the famous Cheese and Beer festival.
As head Judge of Show, Jane Swallow has always struggled to keep peace, friendship, and equanimity within the community she loves, but this year everything is wrong. Her father has just been released from prison and is on his way to Lesser Wallop with the rest of her travelling family and their caravans.
Her job is on the line, and her ex-girlfriend from a million years ago has just moved in next door.
Her life is going down the drain unless she can pull off some sort of miracle.

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Review
FiveStarsI absolutely love The Wallops. Gill McKnight has managed to dream up a village full of characters I can believe in and want more of. Jill is strong, caring and goes way beyond the call of duty. When her ex Renata turns up she is thrown off kilter and old feelings threaten to change the idyllic life she has made for herself. Their very complicated relationship is only part of what kept me reading till the early hours. I loved Bishop Andrew – he was such a mischievous fun character. He was such a counterpoint to the intensely annoying Colin Harper. The  mystery of St Poe’s and Renata’s research raised the story to a much higher level.  I am so glad that there are going to be more of these novels as the main characters Jane and Renata give me a warm fuzzy feeling.
A totally involving read, well written and with scope for a series of wonderful tales.
Kitty Kat

FiveStars
I found this book highly entertaining. There were many scenes that made me laugh and one scene that made me laugh for quite some time. In fact, I related that scene to my partner and she laughed just as hard. It was quite surprising to tell the truth. I wasn’t quite sure I would like the book in the beginning, when the two women had their initial reunion. The vitriol seems insurmountable. The entire reason for the end of their previous relationship centers around Jane and her experiences with her family. The question is whether or not Renata can understand and forgive Jane for running away. Jane considers it her own cowardice, but I see it more as a matter of her own survival. There were several things that were revealed that came as a tremendous surprise. I admire McKnight’s skill in making those revelations not only surprising but fitting. The entire plot hinged together tightly and resulted in a story that kept me turning pages and totally satisfied at the end. Oh, my mistake. Not totally satisfied. There was a preview for book 2, Wendy of the Wallops, at the end of the book. I’m totally not satisfied because that book isn’t out yet. I can’t wait and it is definitely on my list to get as soon as it comes out.
Amy P

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4.5 Star and TWO 4 Star Reviews for Piece of Cake: The Wedding (Wedding Novellas) by Gun Brooke #FF #Romance

CoverTitle: Piece of Cake: The Wedding (Wedding Novellas)
Author Name & Publisher: Gun Brooke (Bold Strokes Books)
Publication Date: August 1, 2016

Synopsis

Kendal Moore knows she’s being used shamelessly by her boss, Holly McAllister. What’s more, Kendal has willingly agreed to it. Holly needs a wife to remain in the US despite an expired visa. Now it’s their wedding day. Kendal is about to marry the woman she secretly loves, but she is afraid. What if she fails Holly by getting last-minute cold feet?
Holly McAllister tries to keep up her usual stern demeanor. If she doesn’t marry, all she’s worked for is lost. She is surprised that the only person she can imagine marrying is her assistant, Kendal, whose loyalty she always relied on. Now Holly’s heart and conscience insist she must talk to Kendal and call off the wedding. She can’t take advantage of the woman she’s grown to love. Kendal deserves more.

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Review

FourandHalfStars
This is such a sweet short. Holly and Kendal struggle with their situation because both are afraid to expose the feelings they each have for the other. At the 11th hour, both women are having second thoughts, not because they can’t stomach the idea of being together, but because they’re afraid that the other will have sacrificed too much and come to resent the other. And they each care too much for that to happen. Even so, most of the story the two are dancing around any type of admittance of how they really feel. It almost feels like an entire courting ritual in the space of a few hours. I liked how each genuinely had feelings for the other. Also, I really enjoyed the interracial aspect of the relationship, because it was dealt with so matter-of-factly. And also Brooke used such a deft touch letting us know about it that we got the picture without the type of heavy-handed repeated descriptors reminding us that Kendal was black every time Holly looked at her. It felt like it was mentioned because it was notable, but then, having let us know, we were allowed to relax in to their relationship without having to constantly be reminded. I guess what I’m trying to say is that it was treated like it was just a normal thing, and that was wonderful to read. I did knock off a half a star, simply because like most short stories that I enjoy, I would’ve liked more. I would have loved to have gotten more of their story before the wedding, and mostly because I liked Holly and Kendal so much I didn’t want to let them go. I believe this was written and included in an anthology centering around a wedding theme, and if so, I’d definitely go looking for the anthology based just on how good this story was.
Amy P
FourStars
Gun Brooke has written a lovely novella of hidden love between two women about to marry. Kendal and Holly are marrying to keep Holly in the country and are insisting it’s a marriage of convenience. On the day of their wedding we find out their true feelings for each other are romantic and sexy and intensely loving. I enjoyed this story as it was just the kind of mushy romance I love.
Kitty Kat
FourStars

I enjoyed getting to know Holly and Kendal! I love the idea of the boss and the assistant. This little story was a great break in my day.

Well written, entertaining, and sweet! Would have loved a full novel with these ladies, but loved to meet them just the same. My only issues with the story was not getting to know the characters more; however, that is the downfall of a shorter work and was to be expected. All-in-all, it was a sweet story that was well worth the read!

Tori

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5 Stars and 3.5 Stars for A Class Act by T.L. Hayes #FF #Romance

CoverTitle: A Class Act
Author Name & Publisher: T.L. Hayes (Bold Strokes Books)
Publication Date & Length: August 1, 2016 – 240 pgs

Synopsis

Twenty-five-year-old theater grad student Rory Morgan walks into her Intro to Theater class expecting it to be a piece of cake. She isn’t prepared for the diminutive little fireball of a professor who walks in. She is instantly captivated by Dr. Margaret Parks, her forty-year-old professor, and even works up the courage to flirt a little, which Dr. Parks quickly dismisses. After their first class, Rory finds herself thinking about the professor more and more and spends most of her class time watching the professor as she passionately does her job. Rory really wants to ask her out, but she doesn’t know if the professor is even gay, to say nothing of the fact that she’s her professor. What follows is a romance full of humor, passionate awakenings, and college politics. Can they overcome the hurdles that lie before them and still be a class act?

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Review

 FiveStarsWhat a beautiful, romantic and heart-warming love story! I really enjoyed being an onlooker in this well written and totally engrossing new relationship between Maggie and Rory.  Rory was just so gorgeous and kind and brought out a side of Maggie that had been kept hidden her whole life. She allowed her to be herself at last, to be happy and content with who she was. It seemed each of them were waiting for that person to make them feel whole.  They had enormous problems to overcome as professor and student dating and the threat to Maggie’s career was always there in the background.  How they both dealt with it and the reactions of those around them made this a powerful novel.  I hope to read a lot more from T L Hayes in the future.
Kitty Kat
ThreeandHalfStars
Truthfully, I don’t know how to rate this. I enjoyed the book; it turned out in some ways much better than I thought it would at about a third of the way through. But in other ways, there are some things that just missed the mark. This is a May-December book, an age gap book for those who don’t use months (I had to explain the term to someone recently). Rory is a grad student, aged 25, who falls for her professor, Maggie, aged 40. One of my first problems was Miranda’s character. I do like the direction Hayes took it, but at first Miranda seemed like a cliched, contrived character – the mean girl who ruins things for others out of spite and because she’s not getting what she wants. And my opinion of the book would have gone south if Hayes had continued with that as the main conflict. But after Miranda stopped being the main impediment to the relationship, and actually the main catalyst as well, the story coasts with no major conflict the rest of the way. Hayes lost the opportunity to use the age gap and Maggie’s feelings about it to explore the biggest stumbling block to their relationship. As the May in an age gap relationship myself, let me tell you those feelings don’t go away easily for the December portion. There was no real problem with Rory’s parents accepting the relationship, which again I think is a lost opportunity. The problem with Maggie’s coworkers also feels a bit underdone. Maggie is supposed to feel extremely uncomfortable with how much they’re intruding into her private life, but other than a note, an email, and the knowledge that they’re going to the board, and subsequently getting shut down, there isn’t a whole lot there that makes me believe the whole change of jobs would be necessary. In all, the book was entertaining, and the romance was sweet, but missed being as deep as it could have been.
AmyP

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5 Star, 4.5 Star and 4 Star Reviews for Far from Home (Belladonna Ink #1) by Lorelie Brown #FF #Romance @LorelieBrown

CoverTitle: Far from Home (Belladonna Ink #1)
Author Name & Publisher: Lorelie Brown (Riptide Publishing)
Publication Date & Length: August 1, 2016 – 208 pgs

Synopsis

My name is Rachel. I’m straight . . . I think. I also have a mountain of student loans and a smart mouth. I wasn’t serious when I told Pari Sadashiv I’d marry her. It was only party banter! Except Pari needs a green card, and she’s willing to give me a breather from drowning in debt.

My off-the-cuff idea might not be so terrible. We get along as friends. She’s really romantically cautious, which I find heartbreaking. She deserves someone to laugh with. She’s kind. And calm. And gorgeous. A couple of years with her actually sounds pretty good. If some of Pari’s kindness and calmness rubs off on me, that’d be a bonus, because I’m a mess — anorexia is not a pretty word — and my little ways of keeping control of myself, of the world, aren’t working anymore.

And, if I slip up, Pari will see my cracks. Then I’ll crack. Which means I gotta get out, quick, before I fall in love with my wife.

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Review

FiveStars

When Rachel offers to marry Pari to let her stay in the country and eventually become a citizen she could never imagine just how
much it would change her life. It starts off as a practical arrangement but becomes so much more. Rachel’s struggles with anorexia and Pari’s difficulty trusting after a heartbreak make the book all the more interesting.   The attraction was obvious from the start but seeing it grow into something beautiful and strong was wonderful.  We see it all from Rachel’s point of view but the author managed to encompass the emotions of both women so well. The love scenes were extremely sexy and the love between them was so true. This was a really great read and I found myself wallowing in the romance of it all. Five stars!

Kitty Kat

FourandHalfStars

This book kept me thinking about it long after I finished the last page. Rachel, our pov, is anorexic, and that is a big part of this story. I found it extremely interesting to get a look at the way Rachel looks at herself, and how different it is from how she views others. In fact, there were many things that caught my attention in this book and drew me in further. After straight Rachel figures out that she’s very much in lust with her fiance, and quite possible in love, I loved the conversation with Nikki and her girlfriend in the tattoo shop. A lot of that conversation resonated for me. I really liked the relationship between Pari and Rachel, and how it slowly changed. Pari made me fall a little in love with her and her mother as well. I’m glad Brown included so much of Pari’s culture in the story, but I would have loved a bit more explanation of some of the parts of the ceremony Pari wanted to cut out. And again, I loved how Pari’s parents were slowly won over by Rachel, but we still got such a real reaction from some of Pari’s other relatives. In all, there was a lot in this story that I loved. A couple of things kept me from giving it a full five stars. First, Rachel’s collapse came as a total surprise to me. I feel like I didn’t get enough of a lead up of her slipping back into her unhealthy habits. I get that she was spending an excessive amount of time at the gym, but I don’t know how long her workouts were before the stress of the wedding hit, so I didn’t get that it was becoming worse. Also, I saw all the habits and rituals she had surrounding food and how she ate it, but again, I didn’t get the sense that she’d stopped eating before she had her break down. Unless she was lying to herself as well, which could be possible, then I would have expected more signs that she was slipping back into her sickness. I loved that final scene before the epilogue though. And the epilogue itself, which holds another surprise simply in how long it took to get back to where they’d been, was a perfect way to end the story. I definitely recommend this book.

Amy P

FourStars

Rachel and Pari devise a plan that will keep Pari in the US and help Rachel pay off some of her college debt. What could go wrong? Well, how about Rachel believing she is straight, Pari’s mother showing up, and both women falling in love with one another.

Far from Home is a lovely read and I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I was worried this would be another of the same in a long line of didn’t-realize-I-liked-girls-until-you books. There is nothing wrong with many of those books; however, they are very cliched and don’t really stand out. That was no the case with this book. It put its own spin on the classic tale and we get to meet some great people along the way. I also enjoyed getting to meet Pari’s mother; she was well developed and in general, a lovely woman.

I loved getting to know both ladies; it was enjoyable to watch their love story unfold. I am glad that Rachel has Pari to love and support her through her recovery. Well done!

Tori

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