Thursday, January 31, 2008


A Passion Most Pure
Julie Lessman

January 2008
ISBN-10: 0800732111

Christian Romance
Rating: 4-1/2 Stars - Exceptional
Reviewer: LaShaunda C. Hoffman

She Found The Love of Her Life
Unfortunately, he loves her sister

Faith O’Connor is the good older sister who is deeply religious. She never dreamed the man she pined for is the man her sister is in love with, Collin McGuire, a cocky, sexy good looking charmer. She tried to put her feelings away but Collin is hard to resist.

Faith wants a man who loves God they way she does, she knows this is the only thing that keeps her and Collin apart. He wants no parts of God, what has he done for him. Collin thinks it’s best he stick with the younger sister, Charity only his heart refuses to listen.

Faith and Collin's passion for each other nearly rips her family apart. Collin signs up for the war hoping it will help him straighten out his feelings. Soon Faith’s father and older brother join the war efforts too. She and the rest of the family move to Ireland. Faith starts a new job and falls for her boss, Mitch. She believes she’s over Collin and accepts, Mitch’s proposal.

Charity always wanting what her sister has decides revenge is the only way to make her feel better, she succeeded in breaking up her sister and her fiancé, but at the cost of her own feelings. Faith runs back to Boston and their lives turn upside down.

Faith is torn between two men who she loves and has hurt her. She has to decide who she really loves and is right for her. With much prayer, she makes the right decision.

A Passion Most Pure is the debut novel of Julie Lessman. It was such a refreshing read that kept me up late reading. I enjoyed the passion displayed by the characters, they felt like old friends. I fell in love with Collin and Mitch; I was just as confused as Faith. Each man was worthy of her love, I was on edge until the end of the book, who would she choose. I look forward to book 2 in this series set in Boston.

Deanna Lee

Omega Chronicles
Cobblestone Press, LLC
ISBN: 978‐1‐60088‐197‐8
Dec 2007

Rating: 4-1/2 - Exceptional
Reviewer: Marilynn Fouche'

At the Outer Rim of the Omega Quadrant, Jacqueline Ezria Wolf know as Jacq, better known by the "COMPANY" as Wolf Runner has been assigned to hunt, capture and bring back Tyr Zahir Kaden dead for one million credits. This combined with her savings will be enough to pay her debt to the COMPANY and buy back her soul. Jacq hadn't been free for more than seventeen years. Indentured servitude was illegal, but the contract she'd signed with Space Tekko had effectively made her a slave. Her price for freedom is two million credits or a lifetime of service to the Company.

Tyr Zahir Kaden has left an easy trail for Jacq to follow. She was 16 years old when they first met and he had never given her anything not even a smile to indicate he knew she existed. But once she lands at the abandoned mining facility, the hunt and seek begins. Jacq soon imagines spreading herself for his use and their mutual pleasure.

Find out why Tyr is being hunted; why Jacq is in debt to the COMPANY.

The Secret Santa Project
Lyric James

Omega Chronicles
Cobblestone Press
ISBN: 978‐1‐60088‐199‐2
Dec 2007

Rating: 3 - Very Good

Reviewer: Marilynn Fouche'

It's the Christmas season and Richard Mayfield has been receiving a surprise sexy gift each day. Who's his secret Santa? He wishes it were Reghan West, but he could not be that fortunate. Bad things always seemed to happen to him around the holidays. Last December he’d had a car accident. The year before his apartment complex caught on fire. Previous to that the company he worked for since college decided to downsize.

Getting Reghan West as his secret Santa is highly unlikely. It was probably Gertrude Turner, the sixty‐five‐year‐old secretary down in engineering who took every opportunity to pinch his butt.

Who has pulled Richard's name for Secret Santa week? Is it Reghan? If so, what will happen once he finds his secret Santa? Will it change his opinion of Christmas, since he has made it known that, "Christmas is NOT on the top of his list of favorite holidays?"

Special Delivery
Marie Rochelle

Cobblestone Press
ISBN: 978-1-60088-208-1
DEC 2007

Rating: 4 - Excellent

Reviewer: Marilynn Fouche'

It's Christmas and Layla Sinclair, is homesick, but doesn't have any time off. Her family lives in Tennessee and she is working in Illinois. Her boss, Preston Scott, doesn't believe in taking time off for any holidays.

Layla is fuming at her desk as she listens to Preston Scott’s advisor tells everyone in the room, but her, that they had two weeks off for the upcoming holiday. She wants to tell Norman Peercy where he could spend his holidays but she needs this job. Norman announces to Layla that she has been assigned to work personally with Preston Scott at his home during the holidays.

Heated passion rises between Layla and Preston as they work together during the holidays. But, Preston has an ex-wife and is he still in love with Heidi, especially when he calls her name after he has just made passionate love to Layla?

Find out what becomes a Special Delivery.

Ms. Etta’s Fast House
Victor McGlothin

Dafina Books
Kensington Publishing, Corp.
ISBN: 978-0-7582-1381-5
Published: October 2007

Mainstream Fiction
Rating: 3 ½ Stars – Great
Reviewed by: Marguerite Lemons

Ms. Etta owns the only “negro” nightclub in “The Ville”. She opens her doors and her heart to Penny Halstead, after her father dies in an accident, as well as, a host of other characters.

Penny Halstead is the seventeen year old who finally has a chance at freedom and her first crush, Baltimo’.

Baltimore “Baltimo” Floyd is the handsome and flamboyant playboy who has women swooning at his feet. He’s also on the run for a crime committed in another state.

Baltimore comes to Penny’s aide outside of Watkins Emporium when her father slaps her for no reason. For Penny, it is love at first sight. She has never seen anyone stand up to her father, let alone on her behalf. When Penny moves in with Ms. Etta, it is Baltimore that pitches in to make sure that she gets everything she needs. Ms. Etta realizes that there is much that Penny needs to learn before it will ever be safe to allow her out of their sights; she’s also the only one who knows Penny’s secret.

However, when Baltimore is arrested and falsely accused of raping a white woman, it is Penny who divulges a new secret that can prove his innocence, but Baltimore’s protective instincts kick in and he refuses to allow Penny to testify on his behalf. Now, Ms. Etta and friends have to find another alternative to clear his name and rescue him from the Ku Klux Klan.

Ms. Etta’s Fast House is set in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1947, between the “The Ville” and Homer G. Phillips hospital, the first black hospital in St. Louis. This story takes you on a historical journey, through the inner workings of the prestigious black hospital, and its medical staff. It outlines the disparity in medical care that was given to patients prior to its establishment because of the color of their skin. The reader is also treated to some Negro League Baseball facts, as well as, the first push by the state to allow the hiring of Negro Police Officers; and how each side felt about the issue.

Mr. McGlothin wove the issues of sex, drugs, violence and racism together seamlessly in a highly entertaining tale that moves along at a moderate pace while taking you into the lives of a host of characters who paths have crossed at one time or another.

If you like a little history mixed in with your mystery you will enjoy this book. I did.

Wicked Ways
Donna Hill

St. Martin’s Press
ISBN: 978-0-312-35422-0
Published: October 2007

Mainstream Fiction
Rating: 2 ½ Stars – Good
Reviewed by: Marguerite Lemons

Tess McDonald has moved to Aruba to restart her escort business, along with her long-time business partner Charrie and her new partners Kimberly Shepherd-Benning and Nicole “Nikki” Perez.

Special Agent Vincent Royal has been looking for Tess since she disappeared from his life several months ago in New York. The district attorney’s office called to let him know where to find her and now he’s determined to set the record straight.

Wicked Ways is the sequel to Getting Hers, and the story picks up with Tess (aka Madame X) and her friends finally getting back together in order to restart their lives after the end of their game of “murder by stranger”. Kim and Nikki trust Tess with their lives, but Nikki is suspicious of Charrie. After Vincent, Tess’ former lover, is shot by an unknown assailant and Tess disappears, Charrie convinces them that Tess is planning to get rid of them. Will they realize that Charrie is setting them all up before it’s too late? And what happens when they discover that one of their intended victims in New York has survived?

This story is set on the picturesque island of Aruba, in a beautiful Villa overlooking the ocean. It starts off a little slow and I found Kim and Nikki to be too gullible considering all they had been through already. Charrie’s character came off looking a little unstable, as well as, vindictive and immature. I really didn’t buy into her reason for doing the things that she did. Her reaction was just too “over the top”. I also cannot fathom why Tess’ character was watered down so much. She went from being cool and calculating to an emotional wreck. The sub-plot with Vincent the District Attorney, and Tracy was somewhat of an after thought.

Ms. Hill managed to tie up all the loose ends Wicked Ways, but as a sequel it lacks the intensity and the emotion of Getting Hers.

Where Souls Collide
Stefanie Worth

Leisure Contemporary Romance
Dorchester publishing Co., Inc.
ISBN: 978-0-8439-5970-3
Published: August 2007

Romantic Suspense
Rating: 2 Stars – OK
Reviewed by: Marguerite Lemons

Navena Larimore is the managing editor for the Detroit Dispatch, the city’s oldest and only African American weekly newspaper and she’s looking forward to a promotion to Editor in Chief, that is, until Maxwell shows up.
Maxwell McKnight is a former NBA star turned professor and now the new owner/editor-in-chief of the Dispatch.

Navena’s thirty-third birthday marks the day that she, as a Larimore woman, comes into possession of her “psychic gifts”. It also marks a time for change in her personal and professional life as well. Maxwell, her ex-lover, arrives just in time to throw a wrench into Navena’s already chaotic life. She is in the processing of breaking it off with her controlling boyfriend/landlord Luke Benson. Meanwhile a prophetic dream has Navena on edge because she knows that Maxwell will die unless she intervenes, but she has no idea how to use the gifts she never knew she had to bring about the change. And to make matters worse, her mother will only tell her that she must reconcile her spirit which was divided in half on her eighteenth birthday, the day her father died, in order to save her sanity.

Where Souls Collide is an interesting tale of psychic abilities and how they affect the life of the person with the gift. It is also a story of how we sometimes allow ourselves to become involved in a relationship just for convenience, while ignoring the signs that this person is not at all whom they seem to be. It’s a story of regrets and second chances.

I found this plot to be somewhat disjointed at times, and unbelievable at others. After a while, the flashbacks, trips between realms and levels of consciousness became distracting. The sub-plots were interesting but convoluted; and the other characters were used more as filler’s.

Ms. Worth started out with what could have been a great romantic suspense story, but it fell flat for me because too much focus was put on the development of the characters “psychic” abilities.

This book was just okay for me, but may be appealing to those of you who are into “psychic” abilities.

Nappily Married
Trisha R. Thomas

St. Martin’s Press
ISBN: 9780312361303
Published: August 2007

Minstream Fiction
Rating: 5 Stars - SUPREME
Reviewed by: Xaviera Tate

Venus for President! Venus for President! Nappily Married is the much anticipated sequel to Nappily Ever After. Trisha R. Thomas did not spare us one ounce of drama or her version of witty humor! The story picks up where Venus is trying to determine how she has gotten herself into more drama than she can handle. Venus works her way through lots of sticky situations and handles herself as only Venus can against a catty wife of Venus’ old lover boy Clint. You will laugh, cry, and say, take plenty of notes (for future references) in this excellently written novel.

Farther than I meant to go, longer than I meant to stay
Tiffany L. Warren

Warner Books
Published October 2006
Fiction Spiritual

Rating: 4 Stars – Very Good
Reviewed by: Camellia Varnado

I want to commend author Tiffany Warren. She does an outstanding job of revealing some common issues of the heart when it comes to single women with low self esteem. She addresses some key heart issues that most women have experienced at some point of time in their lives. She exposes the real enemy in all of us being ourselves. Unfortunately, we don’t see that pride until things break, people break or we break. Author Warren depicts the signs and warning of the heart when it comes to relationships. All relationships starting with God, mother, sister and friends she shows all sides.

Charmayne Ellis is a picture of most women whether you’re overweight, successful, un-educated, abused or mistreated. Because of low self esteem and pride Charmayne gave all her attention to her career and church activities as a cover. A mask so she wouldn’t have to deal with the loneliness, being overweight and her hurtful experiences with men. In this day and time, Travis was a figure that some women are experience everyday. He is relentless and pulls out all stops to persuade and charm Charmayne. Lynette and Ebony are great opposites but agree on their love for Charmayne in her time of need, regardless of their concerns.

A reader will experience laughter and agreement as they travel Charmayne’s journey in the wrong love. I enjoyed the underlying love in each character whether it was for someone else or themselves. Readers will be able to see themselves, a friend, sister, brother or mother in at least one of the characters of this novel. There are so many wisdom nuggets in this novel. I advise readers to pause and think on them for they will speak to your life as well as mine.

1 comment:

Writerdiva said...

Thank you for such a wonderful review of my book Special Delivery.

Marie rochelle

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