ARC Review: Beg for Mercy by Jami Alden

Format: E-bookbegformercy
Read with: Amazon Kindle
Length: Novel
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: Trilogy, Book 1
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Hero: Cole Williams
Heroine: Megan Flynn
Sensuality: 3.5
Date of Publication: June 1, 2011
Started On: April 26, 2011
Finished On: April 28, 2011

If I were asked to describe this book in one word, Intense is what comes to mind. Beg for Mercy is a title that sums up what romantic suspense is all about from the very beginning till its very last pages.

Beg for Mercy features the very sexy, rough and tough 37 year old Seattle Police Detective Cole Williams and the beautiful 29 year old Megan Flynn who meet one another 3 years prior to the start of the story. Megan is on her way to spinning dreams of happily ever after with her broody and silent Cole when the stuff that nightmares are made of comes true. Megan’s older brother Sean Flynn is arrested for murder by none other than Cole himself and sentenced to death by lethal injection and in the process shatters whatever fragile bond that has been forming between Cole and Megan.

The story continues 3 years later with Megan the only one who is convinced of her brother’s innocence, trying to find even a shred of evidence that might shed light onto her belief that her one and only remaining family in the world, that the brother who had sworn that he would protect her with his life could not have killed someone in cold blood. Megan’s search for the truth catches a break in the most unlikely manner when she gets up close and personal with the work of the Seattle Slasher, a killer who has been brutally slaying women in the Seattle area. What Megan is not prepared for at all is to once again meet Detective Cole Williams, the man whom she fell in love with 3 years ago only to have her heart crushed and her hopes and dreams shattered by the indifferent manner in which Cole killed their budding relationship upon the arrest of her brother.

Cole feels as if he has been sucker-punched real and good when he comes face to face with the woman who has been haunting his dreams ever since he had walked out on the best thing that had ever happened to him. Though it is hatred for what he did to her brother that shines in Megan’s eyes whenever she looks at him, Cole can’t deny that Megan still has the power to bring him to his knees because whatever that had brought them together in the first place all those years back still simmers good and strong between them.

With Sean’s impending execution looming closer, its a race against time for Megan who leaves no stone unturned in her quest to free her brother. What Megan slowly begins to uncover is the work of a killer who is well versed in the art of deception, a killer who is depraved enough to get off on the hurt that he inflicts on the women that he kills, a killer who is closer to Megan than she can even comprehend.

As the race to the finish line draws closer, so snaps the control both Cole and Megan exerts on the desire that binds them together, lending an extra richness to a story that already has enough moments of heart pounding variety packed into it. The scenes of passion between Cole and Megan are borderline erotic and very tastefully done that I couldn’t get enough of the very sexy Cole who had my heart racing doubly hard whenever he entered the picture.

There are so many things that rate Beg for Mercy as a solid 5-star read. For me the pace that Jami Alden sets with the story is the best thing about this romantic suspense. I love it when stories are intense, barely letting me take a breather before the next scene comes plummeting through which makes for very compelling reads. Of course let me not forget the impact the very intriguing Cole Williams who makes the story come alive just by his mere presence in it. He is the broody and silent warrior  type who feels so much deep inside, but shows an impeccable facade to the outside world until his hard earned control shatters around him in the most sinfully delicious way possible. His protectiveness when it comes to Megan is what endeared him most to me and Megan is a heroine who matches Cole in every way possible. I loved Megan for her unwavering faith in her brother when everyone else believed him to be the worst sort of killer possible and for Megan’s undeniable need for everything to do with Cole even when she tries so hard to tell herself otherwise.

Even as I loved so many things about the story that makes this a memorable read for the year, I was still a teeny weeny bit peeved because it was quite easy to figure out who the villain is even before halfway through the story. I like a bit of suspense in novels such as this, for the author to keep me guessing towards the end which makes the game of figuring out who the heinous killer is a lot more fun!

As I said earlier, Beg for Mercy is intense, graphic and details the gruesome bits involving the killings which makes this book that much better. If a fast paced thriller is what the doctor ordered with a healthy dose of romance between a sinfully alluring hero and a delicate yet spunky heroine then you should definitely go buy this one. For fans of Jami Alden, I am sure you would need no further convincing. Now, I can’t wait for book 2 in this series which is to be Sean’s story to come out on November this year entitled Hide from Evil.

I will finish off my review with a glimpse into the heady passion that takes a hold of Megan and Cole whenever they are together, refusing to let go until they both give in.

He bent his head the last few inches, tasted her soft gasp as his mouth covered hers.
Ah, sweet, so goddamn sweet. Even that slight pressure sent heat surging through him. One taste, one brush of her lips and he was as hard as a spike.
His hips rolled under her, pure reflex as he sought to get closer. He wove his fingers into her hair, angling her face to kiss her deeper, harder.

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes&Noble | BooksOnBoard


Review: The Price of a Bride by Michelle Reid

Format: E-book
Read with: Amazon Kindle
Length: Novel
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Harlequin Presents, #2033
Publisher: Harlequin
Hero: Alexander Doumas
Heroine: Mia Frazier
Sensuality: 3
Date of Publication: May 1, 1999
Started On: April 11, 2011
Finished On: April 13, 2011

Its being so long since I have been able to put up a review that I am afraid I may have forgotten how to write one. Stuff at work is seriously cutting into my reading time which in turn brings down my reviewing time – which is all a vicious cycle I tell you. Since I have been so very busy, I decided to go with a lighter read, a Harlequin romance that has been in my to-be-read pile for quite sometime now and see whether I would be able to finish it up before the turn of the next century.

Michelle Reid being one of my favorite Harlequin authors, at least of her older books, I had high expectations when I started out with The Price of a Bride. The one thing that older titles of Harlequin have going for them is the fact that the good books tend to deliver a lot on the emotional wrangling content which makes them very memorable reads in the end.

The story starts out when Jack Frazier, 25 year old Mia Frazier’s father forces 34 year old wealthy and ultra rich Greek tycoon Alexander Doumas into agreeing to marry his daughter. For reasons that Mia refuses to reveal, she hides behind the lie that the reason that she is agreeing to the unholy alliance is only because she has a lot to gain on the monetary side from her father.

Though Alex has been after Mia ever since he had laid eyes upon her and though Mia had tried her damnedest to thwart his attempts at wooing her into his bed, it is a very angry and resentful Alex that agrees to the marriage that takes place between them. Since neither is able to deny or walk away from the combustive passion that lights up the pages from the beginning, their relationship begins as a purely sexual one from which Mia is supposed to provide her father with a heir to his vast business empire, which then only would ensure that Mia gets what she wants out of the deal.

The feelings that crop up in Mia’s heart for her husband though unwanted foster into love and wanting before she knows it and is in danger for the first time in her life of being vulnerable towards a man that has a strong hold on her emotions. Mia’s father Jack is a piece of work that deserves nothing better than being fed to the dogs and though certain aspects of the story were predictable from the beginning, I loved the emotional wallop that this one packed which touched all the right places in the end.

I loved the fact that this story was told from only Mia’s point of view which gave me the chance to gauge Alex’s burgeoning feelings towards his wife from his reactions that were described throughout the story. It always tends to get on my nerves in any type of romance when the heroine tends to play hard to get and tends to blame the hero because she becomes dynamite in his arms. It was good to see that Mia was no such heroine and that she embraced her sensual nature when it comes to Alex and plays no coy games to get on the nerves of the reader. The only aspect of the novel that didn’t feel right for me was the ending from which I expected just a tad more though I am hard put to say what it is exactly that I am looking for. All in all, a very enjoyable Harlequin romance that is highly recommended for fans of Harlequin romances, forced marriages of convenience and fans of Michelle Reid.

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes&Noble | BooksOnBoard | Kobo | Harlequin