Review: Pushing Her Boundaries by Julia Rachel Barrett

Monday, February 21, 2011

Maggie is done with men. Flying to Minneapolis, she’s seated beside the type of man she always falls for. A sexy, arrogant alpha jerk.

Mace Williams irritates the woman next to him. She's so damn sexy, he doesn't care. When their seatmate suffers a cardiac arrest, Maggie and Mace team up to save his life, but it's too late.

In Minneapolis, Maggie heads to a restaurant with her sister, only to find Mace waiting. Worse, she learns he'll soon be her brother-in-law.

Stuck in her sister’s apartment with Mace, Maggie offers him one night of sex, anything goes. No obligations, no recriminations. Mace agrees...he wants more than Maggie's body, he wants her heart.

Thrown into a disastrous canoe trip, they must work together to survive. Maggie must face her demons and trust Mace with her life. Mace is determined to save her, regardless of what the future brings.

When Julia told me she wrote a book inspired by her canoe trip from hell I said hell yes I want to read that one. I always admire how much real life Julia can convey through her writing and a real life story with a romantic story build around it? What's not to like about that.

Maggie is a strong woman. She's not easily scared and has a specific inner calmness I admire. She was burned in the past and to say it with her own words: It's more like who didn't burn her. Her life wasn't easy but she made the best out of it and tries not to wallow in self-pity. She knows what she wants and mostly she got it right. She has a temper and a bit of a potty mouth but I always love this in a character. I admired her openess (even though she isn't as open as she thinks, at least emotionally) and way of thinking everything through.

Mace seems to be an asshole at first- though I liked him from the start. I knew that one was made for Maggie. I loved his directness and his dirty talking made him seem like on of those good bad guys. *winks* He's intelligent, smart, protective but not overbearing and not some hot shot über-macho who wouldn't survive the wraith of the female population in real life. I loved that he can admit that Maggie knows something better. It really shows his strength that he can see when someone else is right and has no problem in admitting that out loud.

These two really set the pages on fire- their chemistry is scorching and the way the normally so strong Maggie was able to "submit" to Mace was wonderfully pictured.The story itself was as awesome as I thought it would be- funny, witty and with a good touch of freakish craziness like you see so often in real life *wink* I love how touching and down to earth Julia writes- you can actually see yourself talking to her characters, the only thing I missed was a proper ending- I felt a bit cheated on the HEA.

Pushing Her Boundaries was an entertaining and fun read with a real touch to it. I loved the characters enjoyed the setting and I will always be grateful that I won't ever go canoeing again (different story but same conclusion). A great read you don't want to miss.

To learn more about Julia and her books please visit her website here. She has a great blog there too. You don't want to miss that (e.g. crazy canoe trip reports).

Other reviews @goodreads, but the book @BookStrand

Attention: I got this book for free from the author and I like to call Julia my friend so make out of that what you want! 


Review: Moonlight Temptation by Stephanie Julian

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Evie Simmons has magical powers she can’t control, she’s living in a house that isn’t hers, and her best friend is a seventeen-year-old werewolf. It’d be hilarious if it weren’t just so damn depressing. Add in the sexy shifter she can’t keep out of her mind and his hot-as-hell friend and it’s a recipe for disaster.

Dr. Dane Dimitriou knows Evie has had a hard time adjusting to her new life as part of the Etruscan magical community—almost as difficult as his denial of his feelings for her have been. And he’s got the perfect cure—his best friend, Ryan Maguire. Easygoing Ryan is the complete opposite of stick-up-his-ass Dane. He can act as a buffer. Dane can get close, but not too close. Yeah, good luck with that.

Together, these sexy men may be just what the doctor ordered for Evie. And the doctor himself may discover the cure for what ails him has been waiting all along.

I'm totally hooked on the Lucani Lovers series and I was very intrigued how Evie's book would be like. When we met her in the previous books she was always the vulnerable girl- the one with the bad past that everyone tried to handle with care- it was interesting to see how she experienced all this.

Evie is stronger than everyone believes and she hates that they all underestimate her. She wants to get the acceptance she deserves and she works hard to earn it even though sometimes it seems to be impossible. In the previous books I imagined Evie younger than she felt in Moonlight Temptation. She grew up and I really liked how she matured and started to take responsibility for her actions.

Ryan is a new character and oh my goodness is he hawt. I loved how easy going he is- he's one of those positive thinkers. He's not reckless but he tries to enjoy life at its fullest. At some points his "shrink" skills amazed me- he sees bullshits and calls you out on it. I love this kind of honesty. He was a great contrast to Dane who always seems to worry about what the world or better said his family thinks about him. He's so scared to disappoint them that he keeps himself from what he really wants. I loved the duality we got from those two men.

These three together put the pages on fire- their mutual attraction is breathtaking and as always I'm surprised how some authors can make me believe in this whole threesome thing- even when it's only for the duration of a book. *wink*

I enjoyed how much Julian includes her sidecast. All her characters are shown in such great detail that you just can't ignore them. Cat really intrigued me and I can't wait to see how her HEA will work out. The story itself was captivating and I couldn't put this one down. The plot itself takes a new turn in this book and I'm already breathlessly awaiting the next book.

Moonlight Temptation is a wonderful extra hot addition to the Lucani Lovers Series. It seems I love everything  Julian keeps dashing at us. I'm sure I won't miss the next one.

To learn more about Stephanie and her books please visit her website here

The Lucani Lovers Series: 
1. Kiss of Moonlight: reviews @
goodreads, buy @Ellora's Cave
2. Moonlight Ménage: reviews @goodreads, buy @Ellora's Cave
3. Edge of Moonlight: reviews @goodreads, buy @Ellora's Cave

4. Moonlight Temptation: reviews @goodreads, buy @Ellora's Cave



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