Joanne Rock~~4 1/2 and 5 Star Reviews

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My Secret Fantasies 
Joanne Rock 
Harlequin Blaze #782 
Mass Market 
978‑0373797868 
****1/2

 

            Miranda Cortland came to California to become an actress, but soon she realized that acting is not what she wants to do with her life. Instead, she wants to open her own tea room, and she has the money to make a down payment on her dream location. The money came from her win on a reality television show, but that money came with a notoriety she does not want, as it brings with it the threat of her creepy ex‑boyfriend (and current brother‑in‑law) finding her.
            She’s on her way to her tea room location in wine country when her SUV breaks down. The owner, Damien Fraser, finds her as she walks. He wants to sell quickly, but once he learns of her notoriety, he’s unwilling to sell to her. His father is a famous director, and he’s fought to lead a life far away from the paparazzi. But Miranda has a way of getting under his skin, and soon it’s hard to imagine life without her.
            Joanne Rock's latest is the sequel to last year's My Double Life, and while it’s in the same format (the heroine's sections are in first person and the hero's are in third person), this book is completely enjoyable alone. Don’t miss this fun, sexy tale!

Heather Nordahl Files

 

 

A Soldier’s Christmas
Leslie Kelly, Joanne Rock, Karen Foley
Harlequin Blaze #776
Mass Market
978 0373797806
****1/2


     Three sexy soldiers woo their matches in this tasty holiday treat.
Ellie Blake has always felt a connection to Rafe Santori. First he pushed her away. Then he pursued her, only to discover she was engaged. Now he is home from military duty overseas, and they meet in the airport on the night of a blizzard. They both need to get from New York to Chicago; so they share a vehicle and a drive home. Now Ellie needs to tell Rafe that she never got married. Leslie Kelly pens a poignant and passionate reunion tale with "I'll Be Home for Christmas" (****1/2).
     Ari Demakis is waiting for Dylan Rivera to come back to Las Vegas because she think it’s time for their quickie marriage to be dissolved. She loves him, but he shuts her out and barely communicates when he’s on assignment with the military. Will they become single for Christmas? Joanne Rock writes a thought provoking tale with "Presents Under the Tree" (****), but the end is a bit abrupt.
     When Aiden Cross wakes up, he discovers that he has dengue fever and will be sent home from Africa. He must take time to recover before he can rejoin his men. He does not want to leave, but at least he has Lily Munroe with him. Lily does not want to get involved with Aiden, but their attraction is hard to resist. Karen Foley pens "If Only in My Dreams" (****1/2), where Aiden works hard to convince Lily to take a chance on love.
Heather Nordahl Files



My Double Life
Joanne Rock
Harlequin Blaze #749
Mass Market
978‑0373797530
****1/2
 
     Courtney Masterson's stutter led her mother to see her as defective. Years of therapy have taught her ways to cope, but she still tends to live in the shadows. Then at work, she catches the attention of Trey Fraser, Hollywood royalty and the sort of man who never gives Courtney's type a second look.
     Courtney has found a way to build self‑confidence--she takes a pole‑dancing class. Her teacher suffers an accident and asks Courtney to take her place in a burlesque performance. In the end she nails the performance but only after nearly losing it when she sees Trey in the audience. If he tells her employers, she could lose her job.  Trey has his own issues with his famous father, and the complicated Courtney is a most enjoyable distraction that quickly has him captivated.
     Joanne Rock is always an enjoyable read, but she really knocks it out of the park with My Double Life. In an innovative twist, Courtney's point of view is in first person and Trey's in third, giving her heroine's voice an immediacy that adds appeal. The story is strong all the way through, but it really excels in the latter pages, due to her strong and wise heroine. Their chemistry is wonderful, but it’s the ways these characters help each other grow that make this tale a near‑perfect joy.
Heather Nordahl Files

 

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