Tag Archives: 8.75 out of 10

“The Governess Affair” by Courtney Milan

28 Sep
A white woman with long, curly reddish brown hair, wearing a long bright yellow gown, looking down to the daisy corsage she's holding

This novella is a prequel to The Duchess War; it establishes one of the most important relationships for the hero of that novel, and thus is the first installment of the Brothers Sinister series, despite having been written a couple of years after the release of that book.

Reader, beware: backstory of physical abuse by a parent, backstory of rape, difficult sibling relationships, general trauma, and a most lovely scene of consent, seduction, and sex.

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Out of Nowhere, by Felicia Davin

22 Jun
Cover or Out of Nowhere; the background is a photograph of space, showing a star breaking the horizon of a planet, with space matter around. The foreground is the silhouette of a man composed of starlit sky.

The second book in the Nowhere trilogy, Out of Nowhere ratchets up the tension from Edge of Nowhere. I confess, I stalled somewhere around the halfway mark, not opening the book again for weeks. Eventually, trusting the author to fulfill the promise of a happy ending that’s the immutable part of genre romance got me over the emotional block.

Reader, beware: some sex on the page between two adult men, swearing, trauma from childhood and from recent forced experimentation, including starvation, and a bit of violence. The author has a very comprehensive list of warning and tags here, below the blurb.

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Edge of Nowhere, by Felicia Davin

21 Jan
Cover for Edge of Nowhere: over a field stars and cosmic dust, the Earth on space, the Sun just breaking on the horizon. In the forefield, a human shape made of clouds and gases and more stars.

This is one of the many books that have languished in the digital TBR for far too long. Back in November, I saw on twitter that all three titles in the series were on sale, so I snapped the next two, and then finally read this one. And now, dear readers, you get to see what I thought about it.

Reader, beware: please note that there is graphic sex on the page between two consenting adult men, as well as references to past abuse in one of the characters’ childhood. There’s also some unethical experimentation that includes starvation, and a scene of accidental chemically induced high that almost leads to sex. (The author has a content guidance note here, below the book blurb.)

For romance readers: this story ends with a very hopeful HFN.

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The Girl Who Knew Too Much, by Amanda Quick

9 May

thegirlwhoknewtoomuch

I received an ARC for this novel sometime in late 2016, and it was one of only two new books I read in the months following my mother’s death.

Although I have not yet written any reviews for them, I own and love all of Ms Quick’s early historical novels (Surrender, Mystique, Ravished, etc). In later years, I had given up on her books, after growing a bit fatigued by some writing tics, and frankly tired of the Arcane Society novels.¹

However, the cover caught my eye, and the blurb makes it clear this novel is not part of a series.² Best of all, it’s set in California in the 1930s!

Warning: there are a couple of murders, though not much gore; there’s adult language, and sex on the page. If any of these bother you, avoid this one.

The Girl Who Knew Too Much, by Amanda Quick

I liked many things about this novel, starting with how well the setting is rendered. I felt immersed in the period without awkward lectures or info-dumping. Both of the main characters are complex and three dimensional, and their world is populated by three dimensional, complex people.

The suspense thread is a lot more layered than the blurb would make one think, and the story is told from several characters’ point of view, which allows the reader to believe she knows more than our hero and heroine.
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