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Between a Highlander and a Hard Place by Mary Wine & Ache For You by J.T Geissinger

Series: Highland Weddings #5
Genres: Historical
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: November 6th 2018
Source: ARC received for review
Rating: ★★

Mary Wine's Highland Wedding series has been a consistently entertaining historical romance series for me. I've been enjoying these books, these characters, and the setting tremendously. I'm always eager to pick up a new book with these books. Between a Highlander and a Hard Place was one I certainly could not miss, especially with that stunning cover. While I enjoyed my time with this 5th book, I have to admit that the books are starting to all blend together for me as they all have a very similar premise. When a broken-hearted Athena is forced to flee her uncle's home to escape the scoundrel who pretended to be in love with her, she runs into the arms of a Highlander, Symon. Symon helps her by providing her safety from the wilds of Scotland. While both were instantly drawn to each other, Athena was adamant about wanting to give in to her attractions. As with the other heroines in this series, she was fiery and feisty. It took a lot of courage for her to run away from the safety of her home to Scotland and I admired that about her. Symon was also a good caring man who wanted the best for his people. He had lost his wife recently and was on the look-out for a wife. Though he was fiercely attracted to Athena, he never forced himself on her. He was constantly there to save her from dangerous situations. The romance between the two was great as usual. There was a lot of passion between the two that only seemed to grow as the book progressed. What I really enjoy about this series that there are secondary storylines that delve into clan politics and historical issues that keep the books engaging. All in all, while Between a Highlander and a Hard Place did not offer anything particularly fresh in terms of characterizations and romance, it was still an enjoyable story that I think fans of the series will enjoy.

by J.T Geissinger
Series: Slow Burn #3
Genres: Contemporary
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Publication Date: November 6th 2018
Source: ARC received for review
Rating: ★★1/2

I absolutely loved the first two books in the Slow Burn series and had no idea that there would be a new book out. When I found out that Ache For You was a Cinderella retelling, I was even more pumped. I don't think I have ever read a Cinderella romance retelling so I was looking forward to Ache For You. It makes me sad to say this but unfortunately, this book didn't entirely work for me. Kimber, the heroine, is having a bit of a rough time. She has recently been dumped at the altar by her fiancee and her dad who she hadn't seen in years is on his deathbed. She flies off to Italy to see her father one last time, but she finds out that the flight is overbooked and she is kicked off. A sexy Italian man comes to her rescue by offering her his seat in exchange for her sketchbook, which contains her clothing design ideas. She reluctantly gives it to him only to cross paths with him again in Italy when she finds out that he is her father's new wife's son. I'll get to the positives first. I really liked Matteo, the hero, in the book. He was confident, sexy and charming. He was quite the swoony addition to this book. Unfortunately, the heroine Kimber left much to be desired. She was constantly rude and whiny, and I just didn't understand where her anger towards Matteo came from. At first, it was kind of fun watching her bicker with him, but then it got really old, especially because she really had no reason to be that mean to him. And honestly, he gave up his first class seat for her, why was she being rude to him in the first place! So yeah, Kimber grated on my nerves quite a bit. I also failed to really sense the chemistry between Kimber and Matteo. Something about their lust for each other felt extremely forced to me. Perhaps it was because I disliked Kimber? I'll say that Kimber's step-mom's dogs were hilarious inclusions in the book. I also really liked her best friend. But other than that, Ache For You wasn't quite working for me. While I didn't care for this latest installment all that much, I still recommend the first two books!

Do you enjoy Highlander romances? What are some of your favorite Cinderella retellings?
Let me know in the comments below!

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