Welcome to Cozy Jo's Romance Review blog. This is where you'll find reviews and discussions on historical or contemporary romance books and maybe a few other bits and bobs thrown in for good measure.
So come on in, sit down and find yourself a good romance book to read.

Saturday, 28 July 2007

Men At Work

Disappointing Blaze anthology
2 stars

Through the Roof – Karen Kendall
Socialite Marina Reston is heartbroken when her fiancé leaves her after he loses his business but Ben will not let her support him. But Marina is used to getting what she wants and she vows to win back her man by any means.

The characters in this story were so terrible that it was hard to dredge up even a tiny bit of sympathy or compassion for them. Marina was a spoilt brat with a love of plastic surgery and only thought of herself. I admit she was written like this but I could not identify with such a person. Ben too was hard to like – an alpha male taken one step too far – basically a chauvinist pig.

Taking His Measure – Cindi Myers
Samantha Delaney has landed the perfect job – photographer for a charity calendar full of delicious, naked working men. But then Josh Kitteredge – the subject of all her teenage fantasies - walks through her door. But now the pair are all grown up and all their fantasies are about to become reality.

I again had problems liking either of the characters in this story. A boyish girl and a former stripper – not my idea of a good romantic hero or heroine. The conflict in the story was also a little weak.

Watching It Go Up – Colleen Collins
Private Investigator Gina Keys has been assigned to follow a suspected thief – Hawk Shadow Bonaparte. But this hot man gets her pulse racing with his dangerous work on tall buildings – and with what he gets up to several stories up.

By the time I got to this last story I admit to being so fed up that I couldn’t even find one tiny thing that I liked about it.

I was looking forward to this Blaze anthology about delicious working men but I am sad to say that I was really disappointed in it.

Unfortunately I really can’t recommend this book and if you’re looking for a sexy, fun set of romance stories then I suggest that you try some other Blaze anthologies as there are many excellent ones out there. A disappointing 1 star. 

Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Heat Wave

Fun, Sexy, Summery Read
5 stars

It's quite unusual to read an anthology where all the stories are really good - normally you get at least one that's not as strong as the others. But in Heat Wave - all three stories are excellent and make perfect reading if you're sitting in the sun or just wishing you were.

Rex on the Beach - Stephanie Bond
Private investigator Lucy is looking for a runaway groom and the only person who seems to know where he might be is the best-man Rex. But is it business or pleasure when getting close to gorgeous Rex is the only way to get the information Lucy needs?

This was an excellent, fun story with a really great cast of characters. Although we know Lucy is lying - you still root for her and Rex to work it all out. A great summer romance.

Getting into Trouble - Leslie Kelly
Allie Cavanaugh is fed up of being a single, alone and bored. So when she finds herself kissing a hypnotist at the carnival she realises things are looking up. But Damon Cole isn't who he says he is. But then again, neither is Allie.

Another fabulous read from Leslie Kelly focusing this time on Allie, Sabrina's little sister from Here Comes Trouble. It still works well as a stand-alone story and both Damon and Allie are very sexy and enjoyable characters.

Shaken and Stirred - Heidi Betts
Abby Weaver is happy with her well-ordered life. But when she is forced to go on a girlie holiday she decides to make the most of it. But when she finds herself on holiday alone there's little more she can do but hook up with the tastiest marine on the beach.

This was a fun story about a self-conscious girl and the man who finds her so very attractive. It was in turns sweet then sexy but always a fun, beach read.

Sunday, 22 July 2007

Secret Santa

Naughty but nice Christmas collection
4 stars

Secret Santa is a collection of three short stories all centred around the Secret Santa exchange at the New York offices of Connoisseur – a food and travel magazine.

He’d Better Watch Out! – Janelle Denison
Bosses daughter Amanda Creighton has always been a good girl – until she decides to put her name down as the Secret Santa for the office bad boy Christian Miller and give him a gift that he won’t be able to resist.

This story is enjoyable although I wasn’t sure about the angel and devil who advised the heroine throughout the story – that was slightly odd. But otherwise it was a sexy story with two enjoyable characters.

The Nights Before Christmas – Isabel Sharpe
Cathy Ann Johnson considers herself as quite an ordinary sort of girl – so when her Secret Santa gives her some sexy lingerie she decides it’s time to be a little bit naughty. So she seduces her Santa – only it’s the wrong Santa!

This story is more sweet and poignant than the others and although it does have it’s fair share of sexy scenes, it’s more of an emotional tale with a heroine you will no doubt identify with.

Mistletoe Madness – Jennifer LaBrecque
Tatiana Allen’s boss has decided to go all out with the office Secret Santa and have 8 days worth of presents and gifts. Unfortunately for Tatiana, she has to buy gifts for her office nemesis Cole Mitchell. But when they are thrown together for an assignment, Tatiana realises that this year she wouldn’t mind getting Cole in her stockings afterall.

This was definitely the best of the three stories offering arguing colleagues who change into something more. It’s funny, sexy and a really enjoyable story.

This is a sweet set of festive stories that you can’t help but enjoy even if they are quite light on that warm Christmas feeling in some cases.

Overall – although there maybe aren’t any classics in this anthology – it is a book that I’m sure you will enjoy whether it’s Christmas or not! Definitely recommended for a fun, light read.

Sunday, 15 July 2007

Operation Gigolo by Vicki Lewis Thompson

Funny, fast-paced romance
5 stars

To stop her parents from filing for divorce - Lynn decides to get them together by giving them a common goal. And that goal is to split Lynn up from her hell-raising new boyfriend. But now she just needs to find someone to play the part.

Fellow lawyer Tony Russo is much more GQ then Hell's Angels and he's reluctant to help Lynn in his schemes. But after his transformation he looks like just the kind of tattooed, leather wearing bad boy that Lynn's parents will unite to remove from her life.

But with his irresistible new look and devastating kisses, Lynn keeps forgetting that it's all just an act...

Vicki Lewis Thompson has once again delivered a funny and fresh romance that doesn't disappoint. Both Lynn and Tony are really enjoyable characters and I enjoyed Tony's portrayal of the bad boy and the fact that he was honest about his feelings from the start. And Lynn's parents were hilarious, even managing to upstage the main couple on occasion. The book isn't filled with sex and concentrates much more on the fun and romance then many other books by Vicki Lewis Thompson. However, it's still a fun, enjoyable, page-turner of a book that I'm sure that you will enjoy.