Review: Risky Surrender by Robin Bielman

 

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May Contain Spoilers

From Amazon:

 

Archeologist Lucy Davenport made a promise to retrieve an elusive piece of history buried in the walls of an iconic Indian village. But when she draws unwanted attention that interferes with her secret plans, she’s forced to risk it all with a man who threatens not only her goal, but the walls she’s carefully constructed around her heart.

Keats McCall is an environmental preservationist navigating the globe on behalf of heritage protection. When he catches Lucy at his latest project, he suspects she’s up to something. She’s secretive, sexy as hell—and has trouble written all over her. He devises a plan to keep her close so he can keep an eye on her. But what he isn’t prepared for is just how close he wants to get


Review:

Entangled Publishing’s Ever After line is mostly a hit for me, so when I saw Risky Surrender, I wanted to read it.  The protagonist is an archeologist skating on the edge of the law, and she avoids personal relationships at all costs.  When she meets Keats McCall, she can’t help but be attracted to him, even though a long term relationship isn’t an option for her.  All she wants is to keep the promise she made to her father before his death, so she can finally be free to live her own life.  She discovers that McCall is the only one standing in the way of her goal, and she’s determined to keep her word to her father, regardless of the sexy man standing in the way.  Is holding on to the past preventing her from claiming her future?

I liked this novella!  Lucy has already retrieved an artifact from under McCall’s nose, but she isn’t all that eager to do it again.  After he catches her poking around the historic Indian village that he’s in charge of protecting, he’s instantly on guard.  Lucy doesn’t play by the rules, he’s learned, and he’s suspicious about her motives now.  When he discovers that she’s been living in her car, and that she can’t really afford the repairs after it breaks down, he takes her under his wing.  While he’s attracted to her, McCall’s number one calling is protecting things, be it historic sites or people.  With his privileged background, helping Lucy with the auto repairs, and even finding her a place to stay, isn’t a hardship, and it’s something that he genuinely appears to enjoy.  The more he sees of Lucy, though, the better he wants to get to know her.  She doesn’t care who his parents are or how much is in his bank accounts, and he finds that refreshing.  The fact that she has zero interest in getting to know him better is just something he chalks up to as a challenge.

Lucy has been alone since her father died two years ago.  She’s been at the mercy of her father’s benefactor, forced to pay back the debts her father incurred when his treasure hunting trips yielded nothing of value.  Lucy thinks she’s done with Malcolm, but when the artifact collector learns that she’s got a lead on an ancient statue, he makes threats against both Lucy and McCall unless she hands it over.   Yikes!

I enjoyed the flow of Lucy and McCall’s relationship.  It just clips believably along, and as they get to know each other better, they slowly begin to trust each other with little pieces of themselves.  The progression seemed so natural.  Sure, they stumbled along at times, but the reasons for that were also compelling and fit so well in the overall context of the story.  Lucy was a better developed character, but she had an unconventional upbringing, following along after her father, who was always looking for that next rush, that next treasure.  It made her think that she wasn’t able to have a traditional relationship, but after losing everyone close to her, she was so over giving her heart away, only to have it returned, bruised and battered. 

Risky Surrender is a satisfying read with fun characters, snappy dialog, and just enough intrigue to keep readers on their toes.  I loved McCall, and was sad when this story drew to a close.  If you have an extra hour or so this weekend, give this novella a go.

Grade:  B+

Review copy provided by publisher

Meet Drake Cameron from Ashlyn Chase’s How to Date a Dragon and Giveaway!

Please welcome Drake Cameron, hero of Ashlyn Chase’s How to Date a Dragon, to the virtual offices this morning!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in five words or less.

[Drake] Independent, Leader, Protective, Supportive, Integrity

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you share a typical day in the life of Drake Cameron?

[Drake] I get out of the bed I built; shower and dress in my uniform; walk to Station #3 of the Boston Fire Department; have breakfast with the guys; and respond to whatever emergencies occur during my shift. After work I pop over to Boston Uncommon for a beer with my fellow paranormals—unless I need to discuss something with my firefighter brotherhood, then I meet them at The Ladder. Either way, I’m a social being and I like to flirt. I haven’t asked anyone out in a while, because I’m searching for a female dragon to mate with and save the species. I don’t think there are any available, and not many women are dragon tolerant. I might have to give up on the promise I made to my mother on her death bed.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words come to mind when you think of Bliss?

[Drake] Feisty, Funny, Beautiful

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you find most exasperating about her?

[Drake] She’s impatient and strong-willed. Snarky comments are her forte, and she’s even managed to turn it into a business. She’s the designer behind Hall-Snark cards.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you could change one thing you’ve done in your life, what would it be?

[Drake] I wouldn’t have left Nova Scotia and gone to live with my uncle in New York. How was I to know he was a mob boss? After that I had to disappear and make a whole new life for myself. I had heard there might be a female dragon in Boston, which is how I wound up here. I suppose without that experience, however, I wouldn’t have become who I am today.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

[Drake] My phone. I’m willing to work overtime when needed, and lately there have been a rash of fires. Also, I like to call Bliss after she gets off work and before she goes to bed.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t saving damsels in distress?

[Drake] I like to work with my hands. I build furniture. I’ve thought about taking up sailing, but fire and water…well, you know how those two things don’t mix.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you share your dreams for the future in five words or less.

[Drake] Loving a dragon-tolerant woman

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you!

[Drake] Thanks for asking about me. I’m not used to being in the spotlight. It’s Bliss who’s on TV all the time.

About the book:

HOW TO DATE A DRAGON BY ASHLYN CHASE – IN STORES SEPTEMBER 2013

Let the Sparks Fly…

Bliss Russo thought nothing exciting ever happened in her life. Until her building caught on fire and she had to be carried out of the flames in the arms of a gorgeous fireman. Sure, her apartment is now in shambles and she’ll have to start her huge work project completely from scratch. But at least her love life is finally looking up…if only she can find her red-hot rescuer again.

Dragon shapeshifter Drake Cameron is the last of his clan, and the loneliness is starting to claw at him. He’s met only one woman who might be able to stand the shock of his true nature. After all, she barely batted an eyelash when her home burned down. And feeling her curves against him was just as hot as the inferno. Just when he thinks he’ll never track her down, she walks into his firehouse—with no idea what she’s about to get herself into…

“[Ashlyn Chase] entertains with a voice that makes reading her stories pure pleasure. It’s like spending time with your favorite friends. Reviewer Top Pick” —Night Owl Reviews on How to Date a Dragon

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ashlyn Chase describes herself as an Almond Joy bar. A little nutty, a little flaky, but basically sweet, wanting only to give her readers a satisfying experience.

She holds a degree in behavioral sciences, worked as a psychiatric RN for several years and spent a few more years working for the American Red Cross. She credits her sense of humor to her former careers since comedy helped preserve whatever was left of her sanity. She is a multi-published, award-winning author of humorous erotic and paranormal romances, represented by the Seymour Agency.

She lives in beautiful New Hampshire with her true-life hero husband who’d look like Hugh Jackman if you dyed his hair, and they’re owned by a spoiled brat cat. For more information, please visit www.ashlynchase.com, follow her on Twitter https://twitter.com/#!/GoddessAsh, and like her on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAshlynChase.

To Purchase How To Date a Dragon:

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Giveaway!

Enter to win 1 copy of Flirting Under a Full Moon (Book 1 in the Flirting with Fangs series, directly preceding How to Date a Dragon).  US and Canada only

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Cover Reveal: Open Gates by D T Dyllin

 
Title: Open Gates
Author: D.T. Dyllin
Series: The P.J. Stone Gates Trilogy #3
Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance
Expected publication: November 12, 2013 by Dragonfairy Press
 
Blurb:
Bryn is gone. Jenna isn’t…herself, and the world has been taken over by the alien Riders. The only constant in P.J.’s life is Khol. But even he might not be able to help her pick up the shattered pieces of her life.
 
P.J. finally gets the answers to all of her questions, but will she be able to handle the truth? And will she be strong enough to face her own destiny when the time comes?
 
 
About the Author

Cynical-Optimist. Chocolate-holic. Sarcasm Addict. Paranormal Believer. Self-Imposed Insomniac. Sci-Fi Geek. Animal Lover. Writer…are just a few words to describe D.T. Dyllin. She was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and now lives in Nashville, Tennessee with her husband and two very spoiled GSDs.