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Reviews

Affinity's 2014 Christmas Collection
Various Authors

02/27/2018
Margaret Burris
I liked this anthology, especially since it is free. The Sweepstake story by Jen Silver was good, well written and interesting. Ali Spooner's Big Sky Christmas was okay, but had lots of grammatical errors. I have not read any books about these characters before, so that made it really hard to follow, since I didn't know who was who. Fran Heckrotte's Death was a well written interesting story and lighthearted in an intense way. Annette Mori's elf story was really cute and charming. And JM Dragon's Sleigh Bells was also good. From a literary perspective, Fran's story was the most well written. In terms of enjoyability, I think I liked Jen Silver's and Annette Mori's stories the best. Like most anthologies, you won't like everything, but you can usually find at least a few things to enjoy. Out of the five stories, I think all of them were worth reading....


Unconventional Lovers
Annette Mori

02/04/2018
Karen McIntosh
Annette Mori has surpassed herself in what I believe is her best book yet. ‘Unconventional Lovers’ is beautifully written, uplifting and sensitively told and had me smiling from ear to ear. There are two love stories in the novel - one slow-burning but ultimately such a satisfying and romantic tale. Olivia and Deb are not on the same page when it comes to making a commitment or even admitting their feelings. I loved how their friendship grew into something I hoped it would. Bri and Siera are two very special young women who find each other unexpectedly and complete the other person. Their relationship was conveyed in such a tender and understanding way that I defy anyone to leave this book without shedding a few tears. I loved it. 5 stars are not enough!...


Christmas Medley

12/03/2017
Karen McIntosh
This book has made me realise just how much I love anthologies - and especially Christmas anthologies. Getting stories from different authors is wonderful - and what authors ! They are all fantastic stories by women who wrote the most beautiful tales of love, passion and hope. They evoke the spirit of Christmas in ways that made me happy and joyful.

‘Thundersnow and Lightning’ by Del Robertson is the story of veterinarian Sam, a kind, neighbourly woman who has lost the spirit of Christmas . Finding a woman half frozen in the snow changes her life and her outlook in a heartwarming and sexy way. What’s not to love about a story like that ?

‘Maybe this Christmas’ by Jen Silver was set in Hebden Bridge, the lesbian mecca of the north of England. I loved the setting and the sweet story of Emma and her struggle to get past heartbreak and feel love again.

‘The Little Helper’ by JM Dragon follows Laura , a woman who has resisted the lure of Christmas and love for many years only to find that all is not lost. Great characters and a lovely story that really captured all that is good in the world.

‘Who is Nicolas Claus’ by Annette Mori follows on from her wonderful novel ‘Captivated’. Tanner and Juliet are living together in domestic bliss and the hope for a baby of their own begins to occupy their thoughts. When a strange old white-bearded man moves into town their investigative skills come into play. Could he be?? Surely not.! Find out in this funny, tongue in cheek tale of love, friendship and family.

‘Christmas Story’ by Ali Spooner is a follow up to ‘South of Heaven’. Kendra and Lindsey are a loved-up couple looking forward to spending Christmas with family and friends. It has a lovely  family feel and is a happy story - so utterly romantic and hot (very hot ! ). It recaptured the feel of ‘South of Heaven perfectly.

‘Reflections’ by Erin O’ReillyIt’s about two lonely but very different women finding each other. A transformation occurs for both of them that had me hooked. She’s captured something so beautiful and emotional in this story.

‘This Christmas’ by Alicia Joseph is the tale of two outsiders who find that being who you are can be the most wonderful thing in the world - if only you have the courage. I loved Sam and Lana and would love to find out more about them.

‘Peaches for Honey’ by Lacey Schmidt told the story of former teenage sweethearts Ely and Georgia and the hope that life can work out. Will this Christmas be the one to make Ely’s dreams come true?

An excellent anthology to get you in the mood for the festive time ahead....


Death Is Only the Beginning
JM Dragon

10/07/2017
Karen McIntosh
I really loved ‘Death Is Only The Beginning’ by JM Dragon as it is a wonderful mixture of mystery, humour and romance.  Millicent Parker is a code breaker during WW2 and spends her weeks in London and her weekends with her lover Charlie in the country.  When she dies in an accident and finds herself bound to Violet Reed, the driver of the car, things start to get very interesting.  Was it really an accident? As the pair begin to investigate they realise that they must deal with Charlie and private investigator Pru who are also looking into the mystery.  Charlie was my favourite character as she was caring, strong and so loveable and I wanted her to find happiness.  The bickering between Milly and Violet was laced with a fair amount of sexual tension - but would they ever admit to that? The story was a very unusual scenario and full of surprises.  It was also set in an English village which, in my mind, is the perfect place for a mystery. I want more of these characters and can see this becoming a well-loved series of books.  Highly recommended.



I was given this ARC by Affinity Rainbow Publications in return for an honest review....


Refraction Series
Angela Koenig

08/15/2017
Karen McIntosh
This trilogy is utterly brilliant! Angela Koenig has written a gripping series of novels following Jeri O’Donnell from the troubles in Ulster, to the Himalayas and onto Yugoslavia when the Balkan war was in full force. Her life is one of violence, tragedy and keeping hidden from those out to capture her. When she meets Kelly Corcoran, an American tourist seeking peace, she finds a love that changes her. Their connection was intense, beautiful and at times frantic and joyful. Can they survive the dangerous life they lead? Is love enough?

The writing was intelligent and poetic and managed to convey a sense of history that pulled me into the story and made me feel as if I was right in the midst of it all. Jeri is a very complex character and her journey is one that I am so glad I followed. The love story woven throughout is deep and vital and one I won’t forget. I highly recommend this trilogy and wish I could give it more than 5 Stars.

I was given this ARC by Affinity Rainbow Publications in return for an honest review....


The Bee Charmer
Ali Spooner

08/14/2017
Karen McIntosh
The Bee Charmer is one of those books to wallow in, to enter a world gone by. Nat is a trader and trapper who finds her life turned upside down when her father dies. She meets beautiful widow Marissa in town and is torn between her love of the wild and her feelings for this woman. Their story and that of their friends is beautifully told, with such wonderfully descriptive writing that made me feel part of a gentler time. It took me back to a time past and I felt as if I could smell the clean air, I could imagine the woods filled with trees and animals . Pioneer life was described in intricate detail and it was fascinating. Nat and Marissa worked hard and made use of everything around them and their ingenuity knew no bounds. I loved reading about their lives and how the pioneers found ways to survive in new lands. Their story was also one of passion and sexual intensity that was quite breath-taking. Ali Spooner caught me off guard too with some surprising moments that I didn't see coming. I adored it and highly recommend 'The Bee Charmer'

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