Category Archives: Mystery

The Reluctant Countess

Regal, poised, and elegant, Sophie, Countess of Monmouth, is everything that a highborn lady should be. But Sophie is hiding a past that is far from royal. When Patrick, Earl of Coulter, realizes that her story doesn’t add up, he resolves to find out the truth of what Sophie and her sister-in-law are concealing. Although Sophie has every reason to avoid him, the handsome and charismatic Patrick awakens something wicked deep within her soul . . . a powerful need that Sophie must stifle in order to protect her place in society.
Despite Sophie’s humble background, the raven-haired beauty has won Patrick’s heart. But what Sophie needs now is an ally. Viscount Myles Dumbly, the disgruntled former heir of Monmouth, is determined to expose Sophie as a fraud to recapture his lost inheritance. Soon Patrick is drawn into a fight for both their lives. Somehow he must find a way not only to rescue Sophie from poverty once and for all, but to keep her in his arms forever.

Every aspect of this novel, from the characters to the plot and the romance, was superb. They sexual attraction between Sophie and Patrick is enough to melt these pages, yet they are both loyal and caring characters. Sophie is very strong, coming from a unique background and hiding her identity to protect those important to her. Beyond her tough exterior, however, is a fragile heart of gold that Patrick vehemently protects.

First, you have Sophie, Countess of Monmouth. She is the young beautiful widow of the Earl of Monmouth. She popped up two years ago and this is her first season in London society. Family obligations are the excuse she gives as to why she was never introduced to London society prior to this season. Sophie is quite old at twenty-two for her first season, widow or not. Besides being the earl’s widow, she is also mother to their young son Timmy, the new Earl of Monmouth. She is welcomed into London Society, escorted by her high birth sister-in-law Letty, the dead earl’s blood sister. These two ladies are very devoted to one another. Sophie is beautiful, but aloof, and has been dubbed the ice maiden by the ton (Britain’s High Society). She twirls around the peerage dance floors, but doesn’t engage the males in small talk, in fact she hardly talks at all. The females are jealous of her beauty, and the males want to bed her. Oh, whatever is a widow to do?

What I liked about Sophie is she isn’t the simpering damsel, as I had first envisioned. She is a spirited heroine with a backbone, but she is living in a society where there are very set rules and guidelines. Sophie is written as a genuine character, flaws and all. I found her very refreshing, and completely likable.

Enter Patrick Earl of Coulter, handsome and not married. In fact, he has no plans to be married. He attends ton functions because that is what society expects of him. Unlike the parents and their daughters, he is not on the prowl for a wife. But he certainly doesn’t mind looking for a lover. Patrick’s sights are set on the beautiful widow ice maiden. He knows that something is not quite right about her.

He was with the old Earl shortly before he died, and no wife or son were mentioned at that time. He believes her to be an impostor, despite her close relationship with her sister-in-law. Patrick has a keen intellect and a strong background in spying from war. He believes that he will uncover the countess’ secrets if she has any.

He has one major clue into uncovering her secrets and that is she counts steps while she dances. For a lady, no matter how sheltered or hidden away she was in the country, would have been practicing her dance steps at a very young age. A true lady would not need to count steps. He has caught her in this dastardly deed, and it spurs his resolve to expose her. What boon is he seeking, if he uncovers her treachery? Well of course what any red-blooded peerage earl wants from a widow; her under him.

Patrick starts out cold and calculating. Why should he care if she is a fraud? But he does care, almost too much. At first he convinces himself that he is obliged to protect the dead earl’s reputation and family from a charlatan. He quickly becomes a possessed man with his desire to uncover Sophie’s secrets. Patrick goes out of his way to catch brief glimpses of the thawed ice maiden, and is surprised by what he uncovers. He is touched by the way she talks about her son. The child is obviously very much-loved by his mother, an oddity in itself, because most parents of the peerage were known to have distant relationships with their children.

**ARC courtesy of Random House Publishing Group – Bantam Dell via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review**

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Filed under Alpha Male, Body-Guard, Mystery, Regency, Suspense

The Silver Chain (Unbreakable Trilogy, Book 1)

The Silver Chain (book 1) opens up with country bumpkin, Serena Folkes, traveling by train to London. She is leaving her ex-boyfriend and a painful past behind in hopes of starting anew as a photographer in the big city. On her first night out with her camera she happens upon a posh neighborhood and some kids trick-or-treating. While taking photographs she is approached by a mysterious stranger, Gustav Levi.

As it turns out Gustav is an enigmatic and aloof entrepreneur and owner of Levi Art Galleries. When he sees Serena’s photographs he offers to launch her career, but she has to agree to be his for a period of time. To symbolize that union, she must wear a silver bracelet and when Gustav is near he attach’s himself to her via a silver chain.

Their story takes off from there following Serena’s career as they delve into an unconventional relationship filled with sexual exploration, seduction, battle for control, uncovering of hidden and painful pasts and teaching each other about letting go….

As the passion intensifies between them Gustav’s past is threatening to tear them apart. Are the feelings that are developing between Serena and Gustav strong enough to survive Gustav’s dark past? Or will those secrets prove to be too much for their feeling to withstand.

This book was given to me by ARC courtesy of Harper Collins UK, Avon, via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

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Escaping Reality (The Secret Life of Amy Bensen)

This one ended with a HUGE cliffhanger. Why that didn’t annoy the hell out of me? I have no clue.,

Escaping Reality starts off that something has happened in Lara’s life to force her to have to become Amy. Amy is smart, beautiful, but has been living in fear of whatever is hunting her. She receives a note telling her that her identity has been compromised and she must assume a new identity. There is a protector out there and he provides her with things to keep her safe. On her way to her new location she meets Liam Stone.

Liam is well, amazing!! I instantly loved him, he is every bit the mysterious, gorgeous and talented billionaire recluse he is described to be, and the perfect contrast to Amy’s character. He is also charming and enigmatic, even though his actions and motives appear ambiguous at times. He is a dominant in many ways, and craves to possess and alleviate Amy’s fears, and be the only person who can show her what it feels like to be taken care of again. His dominant and overbearing nature is outweighed by his compassion and sweet, yet intense affections toward Amy. Yes, Liam is one of those perfectly written male protagonists.

Escaping Reality is a fast-paced romance with a huge helping of mystery. From the beginning to the very end, I was hooked! And I mean that. There was not a slow moment in this book. That makes it very hard when it’s the middle of the night and I really need to go to bed but really don’t want to!

I received an ARC of this book for a true and honest review.

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For Love or Vengeance

FBI Special Agent Helene Alexander is a goddess. An actual frickin’ goddess. And her mission is clear, see that justice is served at all times or her days as a goddess are numbered.

 

Helene’s new FBI partner defines good-looking, but Miguel Sanchez, wants nothing to do with her ends-justify-the-means attitude. He knows through experience the type of guilt her actions can bring and Miguel wants nothing to do with Helene’s careless ways. Even if she’s so damned hot she makes him burn with the need.

 

When the serial killer they’re tracking strikes again, Helene and Miguel are drawn into a case that will challenge their most fundamental beliefs about justice and vengeance. But it’s the passion between them that forces a goddess to choose: eternal life with all her powers…or death—to save the man she loves.

 

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I received an ARC Entangled Publishing for an honest review.

FBI Special Agent Helene Alexander is actually the goddess Nemesis. She is on earth with one mission – to exact justice. When Helene is reassigned to the New York field office of the FBI her reputation precedes her.  For Helene, things are black and white and serving justice is the only option.  She is seen as cold and calculating, with no hesitation to take down a perpetrator.

Miguel Sanchez, who has also been reassigned,  has had his share of struggles (ie Unresolved Guilt).  As soon as he sees Helene he is fascinated and drawn to her…but once they are partnered he convinces himself he can maintain a strictly professional relationship with her.  Miguel notice some oddities about Helene, her social skills are lacking and her drive for ‘justice’ is almost frightening. He is wary of working with Helene, especially when it starts looking like she’s more out for vengeance than justice.

They are assigned a case called “The Broadway Butcher” that has gone cold for the other investigators in the office.  A serial killer preying on actors, posing them purposefully after they’re dead, the crime scenes, the clues, the brainstorming. The suspense built as Miguel and Helene raced against time to find the killer and bring him to justice before another actor is killed, and the ending to the case was climactic.

Can these two agents accept their differences  and catch the killer before there’s another victim ? With the twists and turns and a surprise ending you’ll just have to read this story to find the answers.  Well Don Ms. Pineiro on another 5-start book.

 

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Filed under FBI, Gods and Godesses, Mystery, Suspense

The Prince’s Gamble

THE PRINCE’S GAMBLE by Caridad Pineiro is an exciting romantic suspense.  A quick read full of passion and love. With a Russian Prince, the FBI, Russian mafia, money laundering, white slavery, prostitution, an Atlantic City casino, romance and love how can you go wrong. Follow, Special Agent Kathleen Martinez and Prince Alexander Ivanov on a fast paced, action packed adventure and danger.

Prince Alexander Ivanov is scrambling to save his reputation and his livelihood. One of the Russian Nights Casino’s hostesses has disappeared, and his business is suddenly under investigation by the FBI for associations with the mob and money laundering.   He is hard-working and intent on proving his innocence, and that he does not need his family’s wealth to survive.

Special Agent Kathleen Martinez is a tough as nails female set on doing her job. She has no patience with rich, entitled aristocrats, especially one like Alexander Ivanov whom she believes is involved in the vicious human trafficking ring which she’d tried-and failed-to shut down two years earlier.  With a second chance to bring him to justice, she goes undercover in the casino, but instead of facing the villain she expected, she finds herself battling a sizzling attraction to the man she is investigating.

Now, forced to work together to trace the source of the illegal activities, and find the missing hostess, the danger–and the passion between them–grows out of control, and they slowly begin to realize the biggest danger isn’t to the casino, it’s to their lives…and to their hearts.

This wonderful romantic suspense story is a quick intense story. The push-pull of personalities and their responsibilities reflect a reality that is often missing from short romantic tales.

I was amazed by Mrs. Piñeiro’s generosity and her pledge of her share of the profit from the sale of this book to the Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund

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To Catch A Princess

Book Description – Untold wealth, a loving family, a solid career in America: the only thing Princess Tatiana lacks is the one thing she really doesn’t want—a husband. Unfortunately, her parents have just arranged her marriage to a royal from the old country. Are they kidding? It’s the twenty-first century!
Police Detective Peter Roman is a royal living incognito … and escaping a secret that has haunted his family for years. He’s been quietly in love with his best friend Prince Alexander’s sister for as long as he can remember. Little does she know that he is secretly the Grand Duke to whom she is unwillingly betrothed…
When a series of high-end jewelry heist’s threatens Tatiana’s exclusive charity exhibition in glamorous Monaco, the two must trap the clever jewel thief before he strikes again. In a fight for their lives, Peter’s secret identity is revealed. With danger and passion increasing to the breaking point, she must decide: catch a thief…or trust the heart of her true love.

A Russian royal hiding in plain sight, a Russian princess trying to avoid an arranged marriage and a jewel heist all take center stage in “To Catch A Princess.”  With likable main characters, good dialogue, the right amount of intrigue and mystery and a sexy romance, this book grabbed my attention from the first page and never let go. With the action taking place in both the U.S. and Monaco, Ms. Pineiro gives us a whirlwind romance with a little mystery.

Young, beautiful and a royal, Princess Maria Theresa Tatiana Christiania Ivanov is used to living life on her own terms. Second in command of the family business in the U.S., she never imagined her parents would have agreed to an arranged marriage on her behalf and expect her to go through with it. Determined to marry for love, Tatiana has no intentions of marrying a stranger.

Police Detective Peter Roman has three secrets; his real identity, Russian Grand Prince Pyotr Romanovich, a private family secret, and the fact that he’s the only son of Grand Duke Roman Alexandrovich – and Tatiana’s intended husband. Though determined never to marry, Peter can’t help but be attracted to Tatiana – the younger sister of Alexander, his best friend. When an international jewel thief targets Tatiana’s charity fundraising event in Monaco, Peter finds himself volunteering to be her personal guard.

The secondary characters were interesting and contributed quite a bit to the story, especially Tatiana’s family and the international jewel thief known as the “Thief of Hearts”. While you would expect the villain to have been the jewel thief, he’s really only the secondary villain; the primary villain is another character and is a nasty piece of work.

Will Tatiana and Peter realize their love for each other is destined – even if they both opposed an arranged marriage? Will they both make it out of Monaco alive and in good health? And will the jewel thief end up having a heart of gold?

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