A to Z Challenge - R
R is for Roni Loren
Drea says: This two-for-one review includes a new-to-me author and two titles toward my book challenges. Read on!
Check out our previous A-to-Z posts: O, P, Q
Author: Roni Loren
Series: Loving on the Edge, #1
Release Date: January 3rd 2012
Length: Novel (336 pages)
Genre: Erotic Romance
Buy: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Brynn LeBreck has dedicated herself to helping women in crisis, but she never imagined how personal her work would get, or where it would take her. Her younger sister is missing, suspected to be hiding from cops and criminals alike at a highly secretive BDSM retreat-a place where the elite escape to play out their most extreme sexual fantasies. To find her, Brynn must go undercover as a sexual submissive. Unfortunately, The Ranch is invitation only. And the one master who can get her in is from the darkest corner of Brynn's past.
Brynn knows what attorney Reid Jamison is like once stripped of his conservative suit and tie. Years ago she left herself vulnerable only to have him crush her heart. Now she needs him again. Back on top. And he's all too willing to engage. But as their primal desires and old wounds are exposed, the sexual games escalate-and so does the danger. Their hearts aren't the only things at risk. Someone else is watching, playing by his own rules. And his game could be murder.
Drea's Review:Crash Into You starts out with a first-date-gone-wrong and introduces us to the wry inner voice of the heroine Brynn. I was immediately drawn in. And because of the author’s engaging style, how smoothly the book flows, and the suspense element, I forgave a lot of things I wouldn’t have in other books. What are those things? A heroine who is a recovering rape victim and copious amounts of flashbacks. And I mean there are a lot of flashbacks. Important information about why Brynn and Reid are at each other’s throats trickles in through the use of flashbacks chronicling when they were younger. Long flashbacks. Fortunately they eventually become long and steamy flashbacks.
These two have a lot of heavy, emotional baggage that might be difficult to wade through for some. Again there’s the rape victim part. Plus the heroine’s mother was murdered and had been a prostitute. On top of that, Reid doesn’t think Brynn’s mother’s murderer is actually guilty and is actively trying to get him exonerated. It’s a recipe for some fireworks that I actually enjoyed. And their inability to just talk to each other truthfully is the match that lights them Roman candles. Of course everything works out well…ish in the end (it’s a suspense, so someone doesn’t have a good ending!). And Brynn and Reid get their happy times.
Crash Into You has the added bonus of BDSM, and a ménage scene with one hot blond god from both Brynn and Reid’s past. And part of it takes place on The Ranch, a BDSM playground for the Texas’ rich and powerful. Sign me up for a membership there, y’all! *grabs her lasso*
So if you like your suspense with a hot attorney and a side of spanking, grab this one!
Author: Roni Loren
Series: Loving on the Edge, #2
Release Date: July 3rd 2012
Length: Novel (346 pages)
Genre: Erotic Romance
Buy: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Her first love has returned, and he's brought a friend...
After running away from home and the boy who broke her heart, Evan Kennedy has kick-started the perfect new life with her celebrity fiancé. So what if said fiancé prefers guys? She knew the deal when they got engaged. And with her ticket to The Ranch, an exclusive resort where any fantasy can be satisfied, she can find someone to fulfill her less-than-traditional desires on the side.
She just never expected that man to be Jace Austin, her old heart-breaker—all grown up, hard-bodied, and holding out a collar. She knows it’s a world-class bad idea—especially since Jace has brought along his buddy Andre, who’s every bit as irresistible. But if they can stick to the no-strings rules, so can she.
Too bad Jace has never been so good with rules. Evan is convinced “forever” is a word used only in greeting cards, but Jace and Andre have one last fantasy of hers left to fulfill. It’s time to go big or go home. And neither man has ever been a fan of going home.
Drea's Review:Melt Into You’s first scene was back matter in Crash Into You, and boy did it do the trick of wanting me to read more. Fortunately I had it on my shelf, ready and waiting. I’d enjoyed my first taste of Roni Loren’s books, and was pleasantly surprised to discover the second book was even better!
The flashback issue I had with the first book? Gone! And there’s no rape victim! Halleluiah! And Melt Into You features a full-on ménage relationship. *fans herself* with a swanky sex shop owner and his police officer best friend. Oh my gosh! How is that not recipe for amazing steamy times? It totally is, that’s how!
Okay, enough of my rambling gushing.
So Melt Into You’s premise is that Evan (Evangeline) is a foster kid who fell for her foster brother Jace and ran away after they got close…and he freaked. She had a rough time of things but her best friend Daniel saved her from a really bad decision. Now she feels she owes Daniel. And she’s paying up by being his beard so he can make it huge as a celebrity relationship guru.
But she’s so lonely thanks to her self-imposed celibacy vow. Daniel doesn’t want to see her depressed so he signs her up for a weekend at The Ranch (you remember from the last book, right?). And guess who is there? Jace, the guy from her youth. He and his roommate Andre are all about no-strings-attached hookups, threesomes namely. Of course Evan chooses Jace as her Master for-the-weekend. But as usual in the romance world, one weekend isn’t enough for anyone. What isn’t as usual in the romance world is Evan’s luck at getting the attention of two super hot guys.
As in the last book, Evan and Jace have some serious emotional baggage that stands in their way. Jace is a helluva lot more up front about his issues, so that made it less frustrating on the “geez, just talk to each other” front. But Evan kept all of hers bottled up. The introduction of the best friend Andre and all his uncertainty adds to the conflict. Emotional conflict is basically all we got because there was no suspense element in this book like the last one. I liked that about this book actually. We do get some issues with Jace’s ex-wife, but it’s pretty minor.
So this book gets a four a half star rating from me because it’s got loads of steamy scenes, two great heroes, and a whole lot of focus on the romance rather than anything else (and no flashbacks!). Why not 5 stars? Well, I like to reserve that for books that really stick with me, and this one didn’t. That said, I’ll definitely be reading way more Roni Loren, and you should, too :)
Challenges Update: This is the fourth book toward the New To Me 2015 challenge and books two and three toward the Erotic Romance 2015 challenge. w00 h00! *goober dances*